Sunday, June 30, 2013

Things I Learned In June

I learned something today.  The hard way.....gasp....who saw that coming?? I can't eat like I used to.  I began eating a new way completely almost 2 years ago....and it changed me on the inside.  The things that look appealing at the onset, when I ingest them.....uugghh.  Misery.  So as I lay sipping on my Sprite feeling like I have been run over by a truck, I remembered just a short time ago I tried to eat in a way that I knew wasn't good for me.  It made me pretty sick, but this time..OH.MY.LANTA....

It reminded me of my life in a way, how God is changing me from the inside.  I'm different than I was a year and a half ago.  The things I take in, they aren't the same as before and when I attempt to get out of step with that, I pay a price.  I can't live like I used to.  I don't see things the way I used to.  Things changed. 

Sitting in church, our Pastor spoke of doing it God's way.  Period.  It's the only option.  "Drama and dysfunction will be the norm until God and His way become the priority" - Josh Lispcomb.  Just like the chaos in my stomach, chaos will reign when I step outside of Him and His will.  It leaves me tired, feeling just awful and robs me of time better spent doing the things He has planned for me.  Put in the hard work.  Push away from the temptation.  He has a plan.  For my good.  Thankful.

Psalm 19: 7-11
7 The Eternal’s law is perfect,
turning lives around.
His words are reliable and true,
instilling wisdom to open minds.
8 The Eternal’s directions are correct,
giving satisfaction to the heart.
God’s commandments are clear,
lending clarity to the eyes.
9 The awe of the Eternal is clean,
sustaining for all of eternity.
The Eternal’s decisions are sound;
they are right through and through.
10 They are worth more than gold—
even more than abundant, pure gold.
They are sweeter to the tongue than honey
or the drippings of the honeycomb.
11 In addition to all that has been said,
Your servant will find, hidden in Your commandments, both a strong warning
and a great reward for keeping them.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Faith and a Guest Post

Psalm 138:8

The Voice (VOICE)
8 The Eternal will finish what He started in me.
Your faithful love, O Eternal One, lasts forever;
do not give up on what Your hands have made.

God Is Faithful.  On March 20, 1995, I became a Christian.  I "got saved" as I say.  I am from the South :) I began journaling.  I have always had the love of writing.  Even when I was little.  I would write books and poems...expressing myself through words was natural for me.  God called me to writing when I became His.  I had No.Idea.  No idea that the first time He called me to really write, for a year in was the beginning.  No idea, last year when He called me back to that again, filling page after page...that it was just part of what He has in store for me.  I fought very hard when He pushed me back to blogging again. " No", I said.  "Begin Again"....He said...and so I, here I am...and if you were here with me and I could tell you the story of this journey, of this date..June would not be able to walk away without saying He is faithful too.  And so when I saw my verses for today, I smiled.  Please join me at Blogs By Christian Women.  It's my first guest post.  Ever.  Excited....Thankful.

Psalm 27:14
Amplified Bible (AMP)
14 Wait and hope for and expect the Lord; be brave and of good courage and let your heart be stout and enduring. Yes, wait for and hope for and expect the Lord.

Friday, June 28, 2013

5 Minute Friday - In Between

Linking Up with Lisa Jo Baker for 5 Minute Friday.  No Edits, No Re-writes, 5 minutes....
Topic: In Between


When I saw those two words, in between, I started to cry.  Because those two words mean a lot to me.  Especially on this journey.  Its the place between glory to glory.  And I know that glory isn't always pretty.  Sometimes glory is the complete breaking of yourself and giving it over to God.  It was for me, but the in between, the hard here I am, knowing that I am moving out of this place, on to the other side of it.  Into His glory once again.  Stronger, different, changed forever by a love that wrecked my life and then handed me back something amazing.


The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. 2 Peter 3:9 NIV

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Dear Weary Mom....

I'm joining Terry Lynne Underwood at her site today for Dear Weary Mom,.....

Dear Wear Mom,

I know you.  Seems like the older our little ones get the more people think our lives somehow become easier, a little less complicated....but you and I, we know better.  Sleepless nights aren't ever really gone.  It seems that their tears in the night time are replaced with our own.  That them coming into our rooms for comfort are replaced with us standing in the doorway of theirs, watching, praying...please Lord, just tell me we can get through this.  Tears over pig tails or pony tails are replaced by why am I not pretty enough, thin enough.....prayers that he will see the strength that is in him and will be encouraged. 

Sending them off to high school rivals the fear of standing with them that first day of preschool.  The tears aren't any fact, I believe they have been more.  But the one things I have seen and know to be true is that God loves them even more than you and I do.  Every prayer, every seed sown into their beautiful young lives, watered with our tears, He sees.  And watching them grow under the weight of that is amazing.  And He gives us strength too.  Especially on the hard days, when their mistakes are ones they can't take back and they too, learn a little bit about growing up, a little wiser from what not to do....each time we walk through these things with them hand and hand, we have the chance to help them grow closer to Him...and then we do the same. 

Keep going sweet friend.  We know the days of diapers, cheerios and naps vanish all too quickly.  They are replaced with phone calls and driving and first loves.....and there is beauty in all of it.  And I was reminded yet again of this scripture today, so I'll share it with you too..

Isaiah 40:29-31
29 God strengthens the weary
and gives vitality to those worn down by age and care.
30 Young people will get tired;
strapping young men will stumble and fall.
31 But those who trust in the Eternal One will regain their strength.
They will soar on wings as eagles.
They will run—never winded, never weary.
They will walk—never tired, never faint.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Psalm 73

Psalm 73
1 Truly God is good to His people, Israel,
to those with pure hearts.
2 Though I know this is true, I almost lost my footing;
yes, my steps were on slippery ground.
3 You see, there was a time when I envied arrogant men
and thought, “The wicked look pretty happy to me.”

When I read this yesterday it struck me.  The entire verse was pretty much the conversation I had been having with God.  I was letting comparisons, anger, bitterness, resentment all that, start to overshadow what I know and begin to take hold of me. 

11 You will hear them say, “How can the True God possibly know anyway? He’s not even here.
So how can the Most High have any knowledge of what happens here?
12 Let me tell you what I know about the wicked:
they are comfortably at rest while their wealth is growing and growing.
13 Oh, let this not be me! It seems I have scrubbed my heart to keep it clean
and washed my hands in innocence.
And for what? Nothing.
14 For all day long, I am being punished,
each day awakening to stern chastisement.

I just could not wrap my mind around it.  Why Lord?  When Lord? How come Lord?

15 If I had said to others these kinds of things about the plight of God’s good people,
then I know I would have betrayed the next generation.
16 Trying to solve this mystery on my own exhausted me;
I couldn’t bear to look at it any further.
17 So I took my questions to the True God,
and in His sanctuary I realized something so chilling and final: their lives have a deadly end.
18 Because You have certainly set the wicked upon a slippery slope,
You’ve set them up to slide to their destruction.

It doesn't really matter why or how or when or what.  I know I can't live apart from Him again.  It's not in me.  And I am also beginning to notice something too.  He restores little by little.  Why? For me, I believe that if He heaped it all up on me all at once, I might be sorely tempted to forget, to settle, to take the easy road AGAIN.  And so on this beautiful foundation He has set in me, He brings up the structure of what will be my life, of what is to come.  I just have to take one day at a time, living in what I have now, taking each day, each blessing and letting it settle in, letting it become a part of this new place and then moving forward.

22 But I didn’t know the truth;
I have been acting like a stupid animal toward You.
23 But look at this: You are still holding my right hand;
You have been all along.
24 Even though I was angry and hard-hearted, You gave me good advice;
when it’s all over, You will receive me into Your glory.
25 For all my wanting, I don’t have anyone but You in heaven.
There is nothing on earth that I desire other than You.
26 I admit how broken I am in body and spirit,
but God is my strength, and He will be mine forever.

If what I have is apart from God, well then, it's never going to be worth it.  Because in the end, He's all we've got anyways.  What will matter truly is, did I do what He placed me here to do? Did I use His time and mine being jealous and greedy and envious and boastful about stuff instead of investing in those who needed to know who He is?  I'll admit I have wasted more time than I have actually obeyed....I've acted like a spoiled child...a stupid the God that loves me and wants so much for me, but also expects me to show that to those He has placed around me.  Yet in spite of it all, He loves me.  He holds my hand, waits patiently...says begin again :)  And so we do...together, He and I.  Thankful.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Behind The Scenes - 365 Days

Linking up with Crystal Stine today for Behind the Scenes.... 
There are 365 days in a year.  365 of them in 2012 that walked me through God calling me back to Him.  Days with memories that brought me to my knees.  And then this....2013...what I know is His year of restoration.  As I walked along the beach with my sister, not of my own blood, but of His blood, bought with a price and given to me to walk hand in hand for the rest of my days, I remember how I had prayed the year before, what memories that day had held.....and then this.  He gave me this beautiful reminder.  He doesn't remove something without giving us His best in return.  The funny part about this is that I'm 5'1 and she's 5'9 and we kinda don't look too much like the shadows we cast :) But He sees us...His girls in a different light than we see ourselves.  What we think we look like isn't at all how He see us I think.  And so this day brought peace, laughter, family, community, healing...all the things that just 364 days before were stripped away yet again.  He restored not in the way I imagined He would, quite differently in fact....but what I needed right then at that moment.  Thankful.

Monday, June 24, 2013


Thessalonians 3:3-4 VOICE
Still, the Lord is true to His promises; He will hold you up and guard you against the evil one.     
Still.....that word catches me this morning.  I've been restless, wondering, fearing, panicking, crying, picking it all back up and then putting it back down....still, none of that changes Him.  Who He is, what He says....I can do all that, but nothing in His agenda will change.  He knows the plans He has for me.  I need to be still and realize that even though life is swirling at times around me, still, He's not changing.  He's not moving one inch.  He's still.  My strong tower, my place of refuge, my Deliver, my Fortress.  I can try to do all this in my own strength and end up two steps behind where He had me....

 4 We do not doubt the Lord’s intentions for you; we are confident that you are carrying out, and will continue to carry out, the commands we are sending your way.


Sunday, June 23, 2013


It's been a long day...fitting this was my verse.

Isaiah 40:31 But those who trust in the Eternal One will regain their strength.They will soar on wings as eagles.They will run—never winded, never weary.They will walk—never tired, never faint.

Saturday, June 22, 2013


It comes....on the heels of such a shift, it always does.  I think it's me, not Him.  If I can do this, then things will be even  I spent an evening exhausted, stressed out and in tears.  If I can just be better, do better, prove to You.....then perhaps You will see me worthy.  Such the trap I allow myself to fall into.  But I made the hard choice this morning.  And my own striving let someone else down.  And so another hard lesson learned.  It is He who provides what I need.  And it's not based on how many hoops I jump through.  He knows me.  He knows where I'm at, where my struggles are.  I think the devil does too sometimes.  If he can just distract me....then I loose my peace, I won't spend time in the Word.  I become performance driven instead of being still under the weight of His grace.  It's not about what I do.  And I have that voice in the back of my head that says are soooooo lazy if you even think about taking a break!  There is so much to do.....

Romans 11:29
29 You see, when God gives a grace gift and issues a call to a people, He does not change His mind and take it back.

I'm always so afraid He will change His mind if I'm not doing everything perfect.  But let's be honest, I have never been perfect and in fact, I'm that kid who went on sabbatical for oh, I don't know......10 YEARS before He said.... let's try this again Baby Girl, no more time to waste....So this verse in Romans has been His reminder to me this week.  He doesn't take it back.  And if He removes something it is to bring something that in the long run, will be better for me.  And I'm counting on it. 

Friday, June 21, 2013

5 Minute Friday - Rythm

Time to join Lisa Jo and all the other amazing girls for 5 Minute Friday...5 minutes, 1 topic, no edits or re-writes and love the ones that came before is RHYTHM


I really don't have rhythm as far as you would think about movement, dancing.....ummmm nope.  My kids think it's the funniest thing ever.  But the rhythm He put in me is much different.  I see rhythm when I juggle my daily tasks that require me to be in 5 different places at once, when I do all these things He has placed before me.  The rhythm is determined by the One Who flows inside my heart.  Moving to the beat of His call, His will is the most beautiful things of all.  Sometimes the steps are a little more tricky than just a shuffle, step....sometimes He asks for a pirouette...but no matter, He's right there, keeping time, being the music creating His rhythm in my life.


This is my writing space :) Most of the time, kids, the dog,, swirls around me while God lets me share my heart...Thankful.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

It Only Takes A Whisper

Jude 1

The Voice (VOICE)
22 Keep being kind to those who waver in this faith. 23 Pursue those who are singed by the flames of God’s wrath, and bring them safely to Him. Show mercy to others with fear, despising every garment soiled by the weakness of human flesh.
There are times I grow weary of it.  Times it all seems to be too much for me.  But when I quiet myself, lean into Him,ask Him what His will is for me's always the same.  There are days I want to pull the covers back over my head, hit the snooze button just one more time and tell Him.. not today Lord....too much for one tiny little girl to handle.  Can't You see that?....

He sees me.  He hears me.  He lets me rest in Him.  And then He will whisper ever so quietly....and leads me back to where I left off......Begin again Baby Girl...

24 Now to the One who can keep you upright and plant you firmly in His presence—clean, unmarked, and joyful in the light of His glory— 25 to the one and only God, our Savior, through Jesus the Anointed our Lord, be glory and greatness and might and authority; just as it has been since before He created time, may it continue now and into eternity. Amen.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

This Isn't A Remodel

So here I am.....God is moving and I am wondering.....

I keep trying to do things like I did last year. That's what got me through then so surely that will work, right? Ummm no. The more I try to do what I used to do the less it is working. He keeps telling me...."I'm doing a new thing Baby Girl"........apparently so.

You see this isn't a remodel. This is a restoration.

  1. The return of something to a former owner, place, or condition.
  2. restitution - reconstruction - renewal

Isaiah 43:19

The Voice (VOICE)
19 Watch closely: I am preparing something new; it’s happening now, even as I speak,
and you’re about to see it. I am preparing a way through the desert;
Waters will flow where there had been none.
The verses He gave me so long ago, the thing He called me to 13 years ago.....coming forth. And what He whispered to me over a year ago...."I will restore....Joel 2:25".... the years....years.  Restoration begins at the foundational level.  What it was designed to be, the purpose it was made for before all the years of dirt and grime....bad choices, wrong roads and prodigal living....all stripped away, ready to show the glory of the One who made it, who purposed it before it ever came to be.  This isn't like before.  I'm not that girl.  The place I am today isn't the place I was then.  Foundations...frameworks...all of these set in place.  I am expectantly hopeful.  I just know I will not pass this way again....and for that, today I am grateful.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Behind The Scenes - Restoration

Linking up with Crystal Stine for Behind The Scenes...... Restoration
This picture was taken at my son's graduation for Flight Academy, a camp that kids can attend from 7th grade until 12th grade at the Naval Air Station close to our home.  Last year was his first year attending.  Last year I was knee deep in the hurricane of changes our family was weathering.  His graduation was stressful and emotional because we were trying to keep it together for just one day, to just make it through.
This year, the second year of his camp, his graduation brought restoration.  It showed the power of God's love.  It showed truly what obedience to His ways and His word can bring.  We established a tradition in the middle of our imperfections.  We look past the messy to love the person underneath.  Because we are all messy.  We are all imperfect.  And we are all in need of grace and a Savior that loves beyond all measure.  We are a family regardless.  Broken but remade......wounded, but learning that sometimes we hurt those that we love the most, because they are the ones in the end who stick with us and who show us His amazing love when we let Him shine through the cracks of our shattered vessels.  One more hard day replaced with a good day.  One more good memory to replace one we might have rather forgotten.

Isaiah 61:7-9 New International Version (NIV)

The Year of the Lord’s Favor
7 Instead of your shame
you will receive a double portion,
and instead of disgrace
you will rejoice in your inheritance.
And so you will inherit a double portion in your land,
and everlasting joy will be yours.
8 “For I, the Lord, love justice;
I hate robbery and wrongdoing.
In my faithfulness I will reward my people
and make an everlasting covenant with them.
9 Their descendants will be known among the nations
and their offspring among the peoples.
All who see them will acknowledge
that they are a people the Lord has blessed.”

Monday, June 17, 2013

Monday Musing.....

So it's Monday.....and the verse that He gave me so long ago, that had such meaning then, has an even different meaning now...not what I ever expected or the way I expected it, but nonetheless, here I am.  It was foretelling then, but it means something now, ties it all together. 

Isaiah 42: 6-9
I am the Eternal One. By righteousness I have called you.
I will take you by the hand and keep you safe.
You are given as a covenant between Me and the people:
a light for the nations, a shining beacon to the world.
7 You will open blind eyes so they will see again.
You will lead prisoners, blinking, out from caverns of captivity,
from cells pitch black with despair.
8 I am the Eternal One.
I Am is My name.
My beauty is unique, a weighty splendor all My own.
And nothing else—no idols could possibly gain My praise.
9 Look here, what’s done is done and gone.
The now is new, and there’s hope in the not-yet.
I will tell you what’s to come, even before the events are brand-new.

The last two lines of this verse speak so much to much time, so much wandering, yet He still bring His plan to pass.  His way and in His time.  Thankful

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Return To Me

Return to Me and I will return to you....

Zechariah 1:3

New International Version (NIV)
3 Therefore tell the people: This is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘Return to me,’ declares the Lord Almighty, ‘and I will return to you,’ says the Lord Almighty.

These words have been ringing in my head for quite some time now.  Return.  It means that we have wandered somewhere if we must come back from it.  And I did wander.....far.  So how is it then if He calls us to return to Him that we would be able to do so...without fear of rejection, fear of abandonment, fear of retribution from a God who says place no other gods before me.  A God who is a jealous God.  A God who exacts justice.

Faith.  A belief that He says He is who He says He is.  Even on the worst days, even on the days when breathing is pretty much the best you can do, even when you can't see how in the world He can work this...THIS..for your good.  It's that seed, that sometimes is so small you can hardly detect it.  But that is all it takes to send the prodigal running....

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Just Breathe

So I knew this morning, I was at the greatest of impasses....He's holding me here, asking me to who saw that one coming??  And I have been fighting this stillness with all that is in me.  But He set it up.  So I cancelled plans, cried on my way to Target, blew my nose on the way to WalMart, let the tears stream down behind my dark sunglasses.  "I quit" I told Him.  "I can't do this and You are just being mean."  I didn't say this was gonna be pretty......

So today in my quiet He has walked with me, showed me things from others who came before, and as I sit here, knowing it's my only option, He speaks to me....about lingering,  about finding out who I really am called to be in this, and so here I am.

And this is where jealousy and discontentment rear their ugly heads...and this is where I battle my self pity and pride.  This is where that girl I see in my mind ready to do battle goes toe to toe with the very enemy of her soul.  And even though I know how this war doesnt' mean I am not wounded in the battles I face.  And these cuts go deep into the core of who I think I am and what I think I need.  And I have to look at this and then hand myself over to the only One who knows the remedy.

In the face of all that I am feeling today, I know I am blessed.  I know I am set apart.   I know that there is purpose.  Sometimes the extent of a wound is not revealed until everything is cut away, revealing the depth, the extent and the true nature of what will bring the healing.  And sometimes that healing does not come without more pain.  The old, dead, toxic tissue needs to be cut away, making the wounds greater than before.  But in that, the healing can come.  New healthy life grows in the place that was cut away and the place that was wounded becomes stronger than before. 

This is where I say can you just knock me out and wake me when we are done.....instead He lays me at the foot of that cross where those two pieces of wood held not only His broken body, but also the weight of my sin and says "grab hold Baby Girl".....this is hard.  This is ugly.  This is painful.  And sometimes this is what it takes, facing our own frailty and the impossibility of it all, to find Him...His strength, His grace, His mercy....for His glory. 

Friday, June 14, 2013

5 Minute Friday


It Friday again...time for Five Minute Friday....5 minutes, no re-writes, no edits and love those that came before you..... LISTEN
Listen...He whispers to me.  Especially in the times when He can catch me off guard.

Jeremiah 33:3

The Message (MSG)
2-3 “This is God’s Message, the God who made earth, made it livable and lasting, known everywhere as God: ‘Call to me and I will answer you. I’ll tell you marvelous and wondrous things that you could never figure out on your own.’

Listen for My Voice.  Listen to what I am speaking to your heart.  I don't want to sometimes.  It requires more than I think I can take, but often times, more than I believe I can hope for.  And the pain of that feels worse than being corrected.  Listening takes all of who we are.  It's not just our ears that hear.  It's looking around and seeing Him speak in everything around us.  Every experience, every blue sky, every rainy day.  To be so close to Him that listening isn't really something we strive for anymore.  It's just who we are.  We can't turn it off or get away from it. 


Thursday, June 13, 2013

Begin Again

Ephesians 4:31-32

The Voice (VOICE)
31 Banish bitterness, rage and anger, shouting and slander, and any and all malicious thoughts—these are poison. 32 Instead, be kind and compassionate. Graciously forgive one another just as God has forgiven you through the Anointed, our Liberating King

Oh how He is dealing with me and my sporty little attitude.  I'm digging my heels in a little, fighting what He is asking because I just don't feel like I've got it in me anymore.  And then He whispers.....and it makes me weep.  I know that this is an impossible task for me.  It's not about me's what He wants to do through me.  He wants the glory, as He should.  He wants people to see Him in this, and rightfully so.  But it means dying to myself yet again and I.Am.Tired. 

Ephesians 4:31-32

The Message (MSG)
31-32 Make a clean break with all cutting, backbiting, profane talk. Be gentle with one another, sensitive. Forgive one another as quickly and thoroughly as God in Christ forgave you.

Be gentle.....gracious, sensitive, love....forgive.  Because He forgave me.  And I sure didn't deserve it.  Because He rescued me, and I surely didn't do anything to make that easy.  And so I will do all that He asks.  Because there is no other option.  He asked me today "Baby Girl do you love me?"  Of course Lord.... "Then follow Me.."  And it's the following that scares me.  Where are we going?  Can I take this much longer?  Can there ever possibly be an end in sight to this road, this path that makes me want to scream and puke and say enough!?!?!  I know there will be.......I believe it deep down.  But on the days that the pain of it all come over me in waves, He simply reminds me how much He has forgiven, how much that cost Him.  And I wouldn't dare...WOULD NOT FOR A MINUTE want to keep that from someone else if I have the chance.  And I I will....because He who is in me is greater than anything I face.  And those waves of sadness and anger and frustration are replaced with His waves of grace.  Thankful.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013


"The breaking always precedes the miracle".  Ever since I hear Christine Cain say that it has stuck with me.  And today He showed me that.  Yesterday was hard.  It was raw.  It was emotional.  But I have learned enough to know when He says be quiet, be do it.  Breaking.  Letting Him have His way.  Believing even though my feelings said otherwise, good will come even from this.

It fueled an anger in me that said "enough".  I don't want to be second choice, second place.  I won't be.  I was the first choice and I won't settle for anything less....I can't.  It will never work.  And walking to the bathroom (oh the way He speaks to me in the bathroom....) the miracle...the key opened up that door and it settled...

"now do you see baby girl?"

It's what He has been saying all along.....He was first.  My first love, first in my heart.  And He won't, He CAN'T take second place.  It doesn't fit.  And what I have been feeling, that's how He feels towards me, about me, His fierce jealousy and desire to be what He was made to be in my life...FIRST.  No second place.  No person before Him. 

And so I got it....finally.....and He stepped back in to what was rightfully His all along.  The Owner of my heart.  The Lover of my soul....what I truly  Because what He told me a long, long time ago about love is this...

1 Corinthians 13:7-8 NIV
"7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails....."

The Proper Time

Romans 3:21-24 MSG

God Has Set Things Right

21-24 But in our time something new has been added. What Moses and the prophets witnessed to all those years has happened. The God-setting-things-right that we read about has become Jesus-setting-things-right for us. And not only for us, but for everyone who believes in him. For there is no difference between us and them in this. Since we’ve compiled this long and sorry record as sinners (both us and them) and proved that we are utterly incapable of living the glorious lives God wills for us, God did it for us. Out of sheer generosity he put us in right standing with himself. A pure gift. He got us out of the mess we’re in and restored us to where he always wanted us to be. And he did it by means of Jesus Christ.

 I am reminded how much we all fall short.  None of us without need of grace...a Saviour.  There are times in my head I will judge a situation and think of how I might do it differently, and then He shows me that perhaps I held my own intentions a little too loftily.  As much as I fear it, I find the best place for me is humbly on my face before Him.  Because my own shortcomings are far too many and far to real to look around and judge another.  When I am bowed before Him I am saying that I have no control, that I trust Him completely. I fear in this place, this "position" as it were, of being humbled that somehow He will forget me...out of sight, out of mind.  Or maybe that I will get trampled..if I can't see what's coming or what is surrounding me, I can't defend myself. 

I have been forgotten, been trampled, and it feels horrible and I don't want to relive that, don't want to feel like I did in that place.  But at His feet, when we are humbled before Him, in the most vulnerable of positions, we are covered by Him. 

1 Peter 5:6
The Message (MSG)
6-7 So be content with who you are, and don’t put on airs. God’s strong hand is on you; he’ll promote you at the right time. Live carefree before God; he is most careful with you.
God's Hand is upon us when we are laid low and humbled.  And we won't stay in this place forever.  He will lift us up, by His hand and His strength and His grace when He sees fit. And we won't get trampled.  He is careful with us.  He loves us. 

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Behind The Scenes - Reality

Linking Up with Crystal Stine today for Behind The Scenes.
Take a snapshot and write about the moments leading up to it....
May 2012 and freshly finished at the salon.  A peaceful day in the midst of a raging storm. I thought that at least this....this is one thing that I have done right....God gave me grace in this one little part of my life.  That's not the reality.  There isn't one part of my life that is actually under my control.  There isn't one aspect that He doesn't want to be Lord over.  I am not a perfect parent.  Shocker.  I can talk and pray and do my very best to instill the values I hold for myself and my children....but the reality is they have to make choices too.  They aren't little anymore.  They have to make choices and bear the weight of them just like I do.  And to stand by and watch is excruciating.  He humbled me yet again today.  I got a glimpse into what it must be like for Him to watch me walk this road, watch me grow, see what has taken root and what hasn't, see what will make me fall and see what has made me stronger.  He knows.  He sees.  He gives grace.  Especially on the hard days when I realize I don't have anything held together on my own, it's His hands holding me.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Monday Morning Full of Grace

Colossians 3:13

The Voice (VOICE)
13 Put up with one another. Forgive. Pardon any offenses against one another, as the Lord has pardoned you, because you should act in kind.

As I lay tossing and turning last night, trying yet again to figure things out...which never happens by the way, I kept asking "What Lord? What is it You want me to do and seriously?!?! Don't You see?".  And then this was my verse at 2 am.  "Put up with one another.  Forgive."  Uugghhh. ANY OFFENSE.  Why? Because He does see and He does know and He will make all things right in His way and His time.  But my job? To love.  That's truly who He made me to be.  To withhold it, even though I hurt, feels wrong to me.  And so here we go again, one foot in front of the other...let go of the controls and hold onto my trust in Him. 

Sunday, June 9, 2013

In The Belly Of The Whale

"The plans of the Lord stand firm forever, the purposes of his heart through all generations." Psalm 32:11

I am reminded this morning that the Lord has a plan.  He has always had a plan.  Jeremiah 29:11 says He has one, for good and not for harm.  Even if that good has to come from something that doesn't feel so good.  I was reading Obadiah this morning....yeah, not sure that has happened before and I did have to actually look it up in the index.  It's theme, basically the same as Proverbs 16:18 "Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall".  Hmmmm.....been there too.....and then I turn the page and I see Jonah.  Jonah. 

And God said "now your listening baby girl".  You might wonder why.  Well because God told Jonah to do something and he  No sir.  No way. No how.  And so he ran when God told him what he wanted him to do.  And so I whine....a lot..... and want to run from what God is asking me to do.  So He led me to Jonah this morning and you are getting more than just a Sunday Scripture :)

I had some dates and highlights from the last time the Lord spoke to me here.  1999.  I wanted to run then too.  I didn't.  And God opened a huge door for me.  Life changing.  So here I am again. 

Jonah 1:11-16 The Voice
11 (shouting over the building storm) What should we do to you to make the sea calm down for us?
Jonah (shouting back): 12 God is using the sea to punish me, so pick me up and throw me into the sea! Then the sea will grow calm again, and you’ll be safe! This is all my fault! This great storm of my God’s anger has built against you because of me!
The sailors fear what will happen to them if they kill one of God’s people.
13 The sailors ignored Jonah’s advice and tried to row back to land. They made no headway because the violence of the storm kept growing.
Sailors (to God): 14 Eternal One! Please, we beg You—do not kill us as if we had murdered this man. And don’t punish us as if we’d killed an innocent person. We understand that You, Eternal One, do as You please.
15 At that, they grabbed Jonah by his arms and legs and threw him overboard. And when they did, the raging sea grew calm. 16 The sailors were even more terrified of the Eternal One. They offered sacrifices to Him and made promises to Him.

The sea was crazy, Jonah was sleeping and those sailors were like What.In.The.World?!?!?!  They woke Jonah and he can't out run God.  He will find you.  So I picture in my mind he gave a weary I do...and we see above what he says.  It's me...all me.  I'm doing what I shouldn't do.  Running from what God asked of me and He's not letting me out of it.  So just throw me over and it will be ok.  Umm...huh?? They thought he was NUTS!  No way!  It will kill you and if your God can actually do all this, no way are we gonna do that!!  But Jonah said, yeah, it's the only way....and they did....and He calmed it...and THEY BELIEVED.  Jonah's mess caused them to believe. Even in our disobedience God brings His plans to pass. 

But the main lesson here for me is Jonah ran, but he still ended up doing exactly what God told him too...just the hard way.  And the hard way is the way I have chosen in the past, what put me on this journey to begin now here I am.  He called me yet again....and I cried.  I got angry and I wanted to run.  So I had my little tantrum....felt a little sorry for myself, panicked and so He has brought me running.  I don't want to end up face down repenting yet again in the smelly belly of my own disobedience, swallowed up by thinking that my way is the right way...when really my way only leads to being eaten it right the first time.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Just One Word

1 Samuel 15:22

The Voice (VOICE)
22 Samuel: Does the Eternal One delight in sacrifices and burnt offerings
as much as in perfect obedience to His voice?
Be certain of this: that obedience is better than sacrifice;
to heed His voice is better than offering the fat of rams.

I keep coming across this.....obedience is better than sacrifice.  Sometimes I think He wants to take everything from me, to test me to see if this time, this time.....maybe I'm listening.  What else can I do Lord? I ask...What else can I give?....Nothing.  He actually has what He wants from me.  My heart.  And where your treasure is, there your heart will be.  He is my treasure.  I have come to the place where love the Lord and love your neighbor rests in my bones.  I have wept and run and screamed and fought and begged and prayed.....all to find myself face down at His feet yet again saying if it's not You I just don't want it.  I just don't.  I just can't live separated from His will, His truth.  It's just not in me anymore. 

When He whispers....obey.  When He calls....obey.  When He changes directions....obey.  That's it.  It sounds so simple, but it has been the absolute hardest place I have ever come to.  This has been a mountain that I stopped walking around and let Him guide me as I am climbing it. From here you can't look down, you can't look from side to side...I can only look up, because that's the only way out.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Leaving the 99

I said all of this....if it is what He has called me to, would be worth it if it changed just one life.  If it brought one person to know Him.  She looked at me and said "it did".  So how do you measure that? How do you let that sink in?  It doesn't register most days.  That my mess showed someone His love and made them want to follow Him.  I want to run from it all on most days if I am being honest with myself.  But she wasn't looking at me....she was looking at Him.
I prayed..OH HOW I PRAYED...God please, send me the people you want in my life...and He sent her to sister.  The one who didn't understand a thing I was saying, yet she kept listening, probably thought I was a little crazy, yet still stayed right with me.  All the while she was changing right along side with me.  She was very aware of church...everyone around us goes.  I went...I invited, she refused, I kept praying.  And one day she wanted to go.  And I took her with me.  And then she went again, on her own...and I saw it, something was different.  I didn't know when or how or any of that...but I knew.  He won her over too. 
And so I wept...ok I sobbed..when I was there to witness her baptism a couple days ago.  Another step in the journey for her....another step in the journey for me.  This broken road, leading others to His healing, leading me to His healing.  Perhaps without my brokenness there would have been none of this.  Perhaps He knew I could shoulder this load to go down this most painful of trails to get to the ones He needed to reach.  To let Him save them and in turn, let Him save me. To leave the 99 for the 1.
I laughed one day when I was looking at our middle names...what they mean together....she made us a picture of it..
Because it fits us both.  Two pieces of His puzzle...she is a beautiful thing that causes joy.  She made me laugh again...bubble laughter..that spills over and makes your heart heal....and God has certainly brought me back to life, back to activity in all of this and I have had a complete change...a spiritual change....a heart change.
So I'm thankful for her.  I'm so proud of her.  He reminds me that this isn't for nothing.  This has purpose.  Genesis 50:20.

5 Minute Friday

It's Friday again....time to link up with 5 Minute Friday.  No re-writes, no edits, 5 minutes and love those that came before you.
Topic: Fall


When I see this word many things cross my mind.  Fall is my favorite time of year.  I feel like I can breathe again.  Something lifts inside my spirit.  But the other thing that presses through is that I have fallen.  Face planted.  I was running for dear life with everything I just could not bare to loose and I fell.  And it all shattered.  What do we do when we fall?  For the little ones I care for at school each day, they fall, everything scatters, and they sit there crying, waiting for someone to pick them up, dust them off and care for their wounds.  Bandage them up, tell them it's ok....and then they get right back to it.  Falls hurt but they don't have to be the thing you don't get back up from.  That's what our family and friends are for....our community.  Even when He rewrites everything after our fall....


Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Behind The Scenes: Brownies

It has been a long week...both teenagers trying their hand at working along side of my own schedule....we have been tired.  Last night we came home, and I made dinner and we sat around talking, hanging out together.  My girl loves to bake....I cannot tell you where this came from because I have no desire to bake and honestly, unless it's cookies, you might not want to eat it anyways....but my girl makes it look easy :)  She gets the bulk pack of brownie mix.  She has made some amazing creations with this stuff as of late.  And last night, well past bed time, she made her momma some brownies :)  Next summer will find her getting ready to go off to college.  Late night brownies won't be so easy.  So I'm trying to slow down, be reminded, seasons don't last forever.  God takes us into new and exciting times in our lives....for her, for me....

Tie A Ribbon On Your Finger

Deuteronomy 6: 4-9 The Voice
4 Listen, Israel! The Eternal is our True God—He alone. 5 You should love Him, your True God, with all your heart and soul, with every ounce of your strength.[a] 6 Make the things I’m commanding you today part of who you are. 7 Repeat them to your children. Talk about them when you’re sitting together in your home and when you’re walking together down the road. Make them the last thing you talk about before you go to bed and the first thing you talk about the next morning. 8 Do whatever it takes to remember them: tie a reminder on your hand and bind a reminder on your forehead where you’ll see it all the time, 9 such as on the doorpost where you cross the threshold or on the city gate.

Again, He's bringing me here.....Do WHATEVER it takes to remember ....write it, talk about it...TIE IT ON YOU...yes, I have been that forgetful in the past.  I have been that disobedient, KNOWING what is the right way, His way.

I am reminded of this when I speak to my beautiful girl.  I lover her desperately.  I want so many good things for her.  I have so many good things planned just for her...but, Remember, I say to her.  Do not forget what I have said, what the rules are, what I expect from you, when I give you this privilege.  I see the excitement and joy in her eyes...she hears me, but I see that faraway look....she's dreaming big!  Big plans, big hopes, big world!!  She's so excited, what she has waited for is coming, but there are rules......and as much as she knows them, sometimes her joy spilleth over because she gets ahead of herself.....ahem.....yes, she is her mother's child. 

And God has had this conversation with me before......and my decisions got the better of me and I disobeyed His rules, His ways, ignored His cautions, His warnings...and I have paid a price. So as I come to this place yet again, I have a hope, I feel that excitement...something......but don't forget Baby cannot forget this time.  Because forgetting this time would destroy you.  And it would.  I've come too far.  I know too much.  There is no excuse.

He wants His best for me.  He does.  But that comes with responsibility.  All privileges do.  To whom much is given, much is required. Don't forget.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Just Around The Corner

It sits there.  Cleared.  Empty.  Flat.  This was the completed demolition of the building that I watched.  The destruction of what was, the unearthing of things that set below the surface, big chunks of what used to be crushed and hauled away.  Little by little....until one day, this was all that was left.  Cleared.  Leveled.  Solid. Now all the things that were used to do the job have gone.  I drove past again today.  Still empty.  Still just there.  Waiting.  Today it rained.  It smoothed the flat, barren earth down.  I saw the beautiful oak trees bordering it, the grass surrounding it.  Waiting.  Like me.  A firm foundation He has set in my heart.  And now I wait.  For the Architect.  For the Contractor.  For the Builder. For what will day.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Sunday Scripture

Matthew 11:28-30 The Message
28-30 “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”

Be still...cease striving....over and over again, He's been giving me this verse.  My mind doesn't shut down as of late...I'm in this place of "I have no idea" and so I keep having to bring it to Him, ask for guidance, and answer something and I have just become spent with it all. 

I've been to some amazing services at church where God has been really dealing with me, revealing the hurt places and then replacing the old lines with His truth.  This weekend our new series "Simple" really put it all into perspective for me as far as where I am at right now.

Tired, depleted, wondering....but the answer is really, well, simple.  And don't confuse simple with easy :)  But if you want to check out the podcast of services, follow this LINK

The one labeled Sisterhood is amazing and then probably by tomorrow, Monday, June 3rd, The first sermon in the series simple should be available.  I hope it speaks to you as much as it has to me :)

Saturday, June 1, 2013


Psalm 46:10
New International Version (NIV)
He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth.”

She has a tendency to borrow trouble.... much like her mother does. The need for planning. The need to know how it's all going to go. Control. No surprises. Then she I can breathe. And if there is anything that I have learned in these that I don't have control. And I'm not even sure I want to most days. Because when I control, I am locking myself into what I believe is best for me and saying that nothing else can possibly do.

And I'm sure God sits back and smiles as He says "baby girl you are borrowing trouble again. Stop worrying about what isn't even here and that when it does get here, you can't possibly love it".

Same thing I say to those beautiful blue eyes on that precious girl I love more than words. I know it will be just fine. I know she will be over the moon. She just has to be patient. What she is giving up to get something new isn't going to be an issue once the time arrives......the anticipation. It can strike fear like no other in a girl so prone to living in the "what ifs".

Such the reminder. He's got this. Sit back. He won't disappoint.