DEEP IN THE HEART BLOG

PRAYERS AND REFLECTIONS BY ELIZABETH GOODINE


Deep In the Heart is a collection of prayers, reflections, poems I have written, lyrics to songs and family stories.

I hope it will challenge and encourage you in your own journey of faith! 


Please scroll down for more posts (seven total). To hear the song "Deep In the Heart" click on the following link:

https://soundcloud.com/egracemusic/new-recording-14



Please scroll down for more posts.

"Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer."  Romans 12:12 (NIV)


December 1, 2018

My maternal grandmother, Edith Fuller, age ninety-nine currently, was interviewed at age ninety-one regarding her prayer life. The title of the article was "What Prayer Means To Me," and it was printed in a newsletter from The Life Church Dallas where she attends. Here were her comments:


"When I was a little girl, four or five years old, I remember we had family prayer every night. We all knelt, and my Dad always did the praying. As I got older and especially after I received the baptism of the Holy Ghost, I learned that praying was how I connected to God. I find comfort in prayer. I get healing through prayer. I can feel the presence of the Lord through prayer. After my husband died, I lived alone for many years. Prayer is what helped me sleep well at night and not be afraid through all those years. I pray when I wake up in the morning and when I go to bed at night. If I wake up during the night, I pray. I try to live in an atmosphere of prayer, so if I have to connect with the Lord, I can. Prayer is a great part of my life.  


My great-granddaughter Bethany was sleeping in my room one night a few months ago. She told me the next morning about being awakened in the middle of the night. She said, 'MawMaw was praying for everyone in the family, calling them by name, and prayed that they would be ready for the rapture. And it wasn't for just a few minutes; it went on and on and on.' Well that's ok that it woke her up! She needed to hear me pray because all of my family needs my prayers. And I need their prayers. I thank God for the privilege of prayer."



Photograph: Mamaw Fuller and Bethany.

Special thanks to Felicia Hill for interviewing my grandmother.

"Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always."  1 Chronicles 16:11 (NIV)


January 7, 2019

Our cousin-in-law Evangeline Inman hosts women’s conferences and invites internationally recognized speakers as well as women from her local area in eastern Canada to speak. She also invites her own mother, Mary Byrd, to speak. Although no one ever tells this to the famous speakers, Mary is always the favorite speaker at the conferences!

Mary taught first grade and led the chapel services for many years at the school in California where my own son and daughter attended. In her beautiful Scottish accent, she used to tell of her childhood days in Scotland and also make Bible stories come alive for the children She taught them to cry out to the Lord in prayer and to worship him with their whole heart. There is no doubt about it—this soft-spoken woman has had a powerful impact on hundreds of children.


Yet when Mary began speaking at Evangeline’s conferences, she felt intimidated standing on the stage addressing these adult women. After all, she was used to looking from the podium and seeing boys and girls. She prayed about it and sensed the Lord saying to her regarding these women, “They’re just little girls on the inside.” She then felt the confidence to speak at the conferences.


Do you ever feel that way? Like a child on the inside? Honestly, we all feel that way at times no matter how old we are, no matter how much responsibility we carry and no matter how fearless we may pretend to be. Sometimes we just need to run to our heavenly father. We are his children! We can cry out to him. He loves us and welcomes us. He will give us the strength and courage we need so we can do what he has called us to do.



Photograph:  Mary and my daughter, Bethany, sharing a special moment at a family wedding.

"Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you." 

1 Peter 5:7 (NIV)


February 15, 2019

Vivian Goodine was awakened in the middle of a freezing cold, Canadian winter night in 1972 by a loud knock at the downstairs door. Her husband, Glasier, was away on a snowmobile trip with some of his brothers and friends. Peering through the window, she was startled to see the face of her pastor who had come to relay tragic news: Glasier had died of a heart attack.


The snowmobile trail had been packed with deep, wet snow making the journey to the campsite twelve miles into the forest much longer and more tedious than the men had anticipated. Around midnight they stopped for a few minutes to catch their breath. When they were ready to continue, Glasier pulled the cord to re-start the engine of his snowmobile. As he did, he fell backwards onto the snow and took his last breath.  He was only fifty-five years old.


You can imagine the shock and sense of loss that Vivian, my mother-in-law, felt and how quickly her life changed. In a few short months she experienced another loss as Wayne, their only child, left home to attend college in the USA. Vivian found strength through her close relationships with family and friends and through her faith that God would take care of her. Her attitude made a real impression on me. I remember hearing her say, "Why worry when you can pray?" Too often I have the opposite attitude:  "Why pray when you can worry?"  Can you relate?


What I do know is that worry will not change my situation. But when I focus my eyes on the majesty of God, when I worship him with my whole heart and invite him into my situation, something changes inside me.  The result is genuine peace, refreshing joy and seeing God answer prayer in unexpected ways.



Photograph:  Vivian and Wayne at our wedding.  

"Whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst." John 4:14 (NIV)


July 14, 2019

Elizabeth's description of the word "craving": It's around midnight and you think, "I need a little something sweet." So you rummage around the pantry and discover some chocolate such as Bark Thins that you feel certain would be the perfect solution, and you indulge. Well, let's say you basically inhale it. But in a few minutes you think, "I have got to get that sweet taste out of my mouth!" The term "peanut butter" flashes in large bright letters in your brain. So you grab a little spoonful of peanut butter. And then you think, "Well maybe I need a couple of Wheat Thins to go with that peanut butter." But suddenly you realize that this could go on and on. You start to feel defeated and think, "I should not have eaten any of that!" But at this point you do feel that you need a little milk or something to wash it all down. And then it's like, "Someone, please get me out of this kitchen right now!!"


How many times in life do we have the expectation that something is going to  

satisfy whatever we are craving, but somehow it does not? So we keep longing for more and reaching for something else. From a spiritual perspective, we need to remember that there is a longing deep in our hearts that cannot be truly satisfied by anything but by God himself. Years ago my husband described this longing in the words of a song: "Searching for something to really satisfy; longing for something to fill this heart of mine; I found the answer was just a prayer away. My searching is over, and now I can say. . .I've found in Jesus everything. I've found in Jesus all I need. More than all that this world can afford, I've found in Jesus my Lord."


Go pour yourself a glass of cold water and read John chapter four. Jesus said to the woman at the well, "Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life. (verses 13 and 14, NIV)  He offered to her, and he offers to you and me, "living water" that satisfies our souls and gives us eternal life. Be filled!



Photograph: I'm trying to stay hydrated on this hot summer day in the South! The mint leaves are some that I grow on the side of our house. My neighbor from India grows them in her front yard and she gave them to me to plant. The cloth belonged to my mother-in-law, Vivian.

"You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart." Jeremiah 29:13 (NIV)


August 17, 2019

Two verses from a song I wrote express my own need and search for God:  

"I've had this crazy expectation that if I got what I wanted

Then and only then I'd be at peace.

I've had this image of perfection, and if I just could attain it

Maybe then I could feel good about me.

But these dreams I'm chasing they do not fulfill.

And yet so often I expect that they will.

But in my searching I cry to you God,

I need you deep in the heart."


"I've thought my need for affirmation could be filled by another,

A sister or a brother, but I was wrong.

I've thought my heartache and my pain could be healed by another,

Maybe even a lover, but I was wrong, so wrong.

What I am craving they cannot fulfill.

And yet so often I expect that they will.

But in my searching I cry to you God,

I need you deep in the heart."


Does that resonate with the cry of your own heart? Pray this prayer with me: "God, I acknowledge you; I need you." This simple but powerful prayer can be the beginning of a new life of purpose and peace.



From the song "Deep In the Heart".

Words by Wayne and Elizabeth Goodine; Music by Elizabeth Goodine.

(c) 2011 Wayne Goodine Music (admin. by BMG Chrysalis, New York, NY, USA)/ASCAP.  


To read the complete lyrics and to hear a recording of the song, click on:

https://soundcloud.com/egracemusic/new-recording-14




Photograph: I snapped this picture of my dad, Vily Arlen Guidroz, praying in front of the baptistry during a church service at The Life Church Dallas a couple of years before he died. It is special to me because it reminds me of his tender heart. He was a seasoned Christian leader, but he would be the first to admit how much he needed the Lord every day in every area of his life.

"Search me, O God, and know my heart. " 

Psalm 139:23 (NLT)


September 8, 2019

Both my father and my father-in-law died from heart disease. My father’s heart problems did not become apparent until age sixty-five when he had a routine examination for insurance purposes. Thankfully, he had the opportunity to have surgical intervention and to make some lifestyle changes that allowed him to continue living a productive life for many years. Later in his life he battled more heart disease until his frail body could not take any more, and he died at age eight-four.


When my father-in-law was age fifty-four the doctor told him, “You’ll live to be a hundred!” He found that comforting to hear after having had some chest pains and shortness of breath. But he died the next year at age fifty-five of a heart attack. On the outside he had appeared to be healthy and strong; but on the inside—something the technology of the day could not detect—his heart was not healthy. He did not comprehend that his life was in danger.


Used figuratively, the “heart” is the center of who we are. The word often symbolizes our most private thoughts, emotions and desires as well as our beliefs, conscience and character. It parallels the actual physical heart in that its condition can often go undetected for a long time. Problems with potentially devastating or even fatal consequences don’t always reveal themselves until it may be too late for intervention. We may sense that something is not quite right deep in the heart, but we may not recognize the seriousness of it. Maybe we are afraid to deal with it, maybe we are too busy, or we are embarrassed for anyone to know. So often we ignore symptoms.


God alone sees the true condition of our heart. David, the king of Israel, prayed, “Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life (Psalms 139:23-24, NLT). As shown in other passages of scripture, when confronted with his sin, David showed genuine remorse and humility. He turned from his sin and turned to God—the essence of repentance. This is a starting point for what David called “the path of everlasting life”.  Will you pray David’s prayer with me?



Photograph: This is my husband, Wayne, and my father-in-law, Glasier. When someone would thank Glasier for something he did for them, he would say, "It's a pleasure to be helpful".  

"Teach me knowledge and good judgment, for I trust your commands." Psalm 119:66 (NIV)


October 12, 2019

My paternal grandmother, Dora Guidroz, kept a bottle of Vicks, a salve that contains eucalyptus, next to her bed. During the night she would reach for it without even turning on the light, spread some around her nose to help her breathe better, close the bottle, and then return it to the nightstand. This was a common routine. But one morning she received the shock of her life when she looked at herself in the mirror: in the darkness of the night she had mistakenly reached for a bottle of ink!


To clarify, my sweet grandmother was someone who had good judgment in life; but at that moment she could not see, so she made a choice that she regretted the next morning. What a lesson for all of us. So much in life depends upon our seeing and thinking clearly so we can have good judgment and make good decisions. And good judgment, as we know, can be impaired in many ways.  In the darkness of depression and disappointment, for example, we may reach for the wrong things, oblivious to the consequences.  


A simple prayer from the Psalms can make all the difference: "Teach me knowledge and good judgment, for I trust your commands." Psalm 119:66 (NIV)  



Photograph: Mamaw Guidroz. I always loved her little grin and that gleam in her eye. She used to serve me a cup of “cowgirl” coffee--a little bit of coffee with a lot of cream and sugar—after I woke up in the morning when I used to go and stay with her. She and my grandfather, Vily Able Guidroz, were both born and raised in south Louisiana, and they conversed in French and English. They had nine children.



DEEP IN THE HEART, Prayers and Reflections by Elizabeth Goodine. 

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