His Encouragement #66


Good morning, and welcome to His Encouragement Thursday! I don’t know about you, but Thursdays are my struggle day of the week. By Thursday, I have already been working hard at school and at home, and I just wish it would hurry up and be Friday already. LOL! I definitely need a little extra Jesus time on Thursdays.

Trisha, my blogger friend at Joy of Reading, and I decided on calling this post “His Encouragement” because our real source of peace, strength, and security can only come from Jesus Christ. He, and He alone, is our constant! We pray and hope that these Thursday posts become a real encouragement to you and help you end your week strong in God’s love and purpose for you. God bless!

Today’s Thursday Encouragement comes from:

Psalm 34:18 (ESV)

The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.


I chose this verse today because of the words “brokenhearted” and “crushed.” Tomorrow is my dad’s funeral, and I am definitely brokenhearted and crushed.

On November 25, 1995, my mother married a man named Mike Shepard. On that day, two families became one. I would like to say that the transition went smoothly, but that would be a lie. It took a couple of years for our two families to become one, and for Mike to become my dad, but eventually we all settled in and became a great family.

Please know that I do love my biological dad, it’s just that my biological dad never wanted the job (and he hasn’t hidden that fact). This is part of why my parents divorced when I was 11.

But back to Mike.


October 23, 2011

Mike Shepard chose me to be his daughter. He chose to be the dad I sorely needed. One of my most favorite memories EVER is when he gave me my first BIG hug. He told me that daughters need BIG hugs from their dads so they grow up strong. My dad gave the BEST hugs. I will miss his hugs every day for the rest of my life. He was right — daddy hugs do make daughters very strong.


I am brokenhearted because the man who chose to raise me, guide me, and love me has died. I am crushed because with Mike gone I feel like I’m back to being that 11-year old girl who isn’t good enough for a daddy to love her more than he loves himself. This hurts hard!

The thing is though, I do have a Dad who loves me more than He loves Himself. Mike illustrated Jesus’s love for me during the 28 years that he was in my life, but Jesus has illustrated His selfless love before I was ever born. And, Jesus’s love will last for all eternity. I never have to worry that Jesus’s love will be taken from me.

Right now, I am brokenhearted and crushed for sure, but Psalm 34:18 tells me that Jesus is close. He is close and wants me to know that He’s got me, and this does comfort me a little today.

Before I go, I just want to make a plea. My dad was taken from me and my family without any notice. He was killed in a car accident. My family and I will never get the opportunity to say, “Goodbye.” I know one day I will see my dad again in Heaven, but the not getting to say goodbye hurts. My plea is this — please contact your loved ones today and tell them you love them. Please! We truly never know if today is the last day we will see or speak to our loved ones. Don’t miss opportunities to tell those you love that you love them.



Check out more Thursday Encouragement from my fellow blogger friends:

Trisha @ Joy of Reading

Jacquelyn @ A Heavenly Home

Jessica @ A Baker’s Perspective

Becca @ The Becca Files

Jenny @ Author Jenny Lynn

Gina @ Stories by Gina

Rebecca @ Rev. Rebecca Writes

If you would like to join us: please contact Trisha or Nicole

14 thoughts on “His Encouragement #66

  1. My prayers are with you at this most difficult time. Just because the funeral in over doesn’t mean the pain goes away. It will take time and prayer to ease your pain. Know that others lift you up as well.

    I’ve tried to tell others the same thing you talk about. We aren’t guaranteed tomorrow – not even the next minute, so make sure you let those you know that you love them and let no bad thoughts linger. I can always remember the saying “don’t go to be angry”, but I think it’s better to say “speak of your love often” is even better. If we would live like this was our last moment, wouldn’t we all act differently – better? That argument would be settled, you would ease that persons pain instead of waiting to do it later and loved ones would never doubt how much they mean to us.
    2clowns at arkansas dot net

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love when you say, “speak of your love often.” I think it’s imperative that we all act like today is our last day. God’s the boss, not us. I feel we need to make our loved ones absolutely sure where they stand because we are not guaranteed a tomorrow. Thanks for your prayers, Kay. They mean a lot to me. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I love this loving, heartfelt, and truthful blog. Even through your hurt, I love how you share Jesus. I am so sorry for your loss and I will pray for you and your family. Thankful for your reminder to take this day and share our love with others too. As you say, you never know when it will be the last time. LORD, rain down comfort on this family in their time of need. Amen.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Wow this made me cry. Praying for you big time! I can’t even imagine. It’s a special prize to have people in our lives who choose to love us and overflowingly fill the holes others have left. Your dad was truly a gift from God and my heart is breaking for you. Sending prayers and hugs ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Many hugs and condolences to you and your family. You all are in my prayers.<3

    And thank you for this heartfelt word of wisdom: "Don’t miss opportunities to tell those you love that you love them."

    Growing up, my parents tried to teach us this lesson and so we never said goodbye — in person, on the phone, etc. — without letting the other person know we love them. I am so glad that they taught me this. Now that my mom is gone, I miss send her happy "Good morning!" texts with emojis and ending our conversations with: "Love you, Mom!" So while there is much I wish I could have said to my mom before she passed, I know with great confidence that she knew how much I loved her.

    I am not the best when it comes to thoughtful gestures (flowers, cards, surprise gifts at just the right time, knowing just what someone needs, etc.) but I want to live this wisdom every day: to never miss the opportunity to tell my husband, my boys, my dad, my sisters, my family… how much I love them and care about them.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Sending you hugs and prayers today and in the days to come! Death was never part of God’s perfect plan. Sin took over and has fully corrupted this earth. Once Jesus comes again, all will be made new, all will be made as it should. We will rejoice in our Savior and be reunited with loved ones! Oh, how I long for that glorious day!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. How amazing that God allowed you to have such a terrific dad as Mike. I’m praying for your family as you work through the grief – that you remember you are not as those who have no hope.

    Liked by 1 person

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