Saturday, January 31, 2015

In The Quiet

I sat there listening. I knew it was where I was supposed to be. This all of sudden on set of a really bad cold left me feeling exhausted and a little quieter than usual. I was having a hard time shaking the feeling of cold. I hate to be cold. But as they began singing, then we began singing along too, I tried to listed to whatever it was I needed to hear. And when she spoke, it rang true in my ears...someone has a voice to carry....yes. The word I had been expecting. It was not a surprise at all when the scripture drove home what He spoke..... 
Galatians 6:5 
Each person has his or her own burden to bear and story to write. 
And so it is with this journey of mine. It's not easy Saying yes to God. Moreover, it's not easy to keep saying yes to Him when the first yes seemed to bring about complete destruction. Every "yes" at every turn brought me here. And so much these days I see how it could have gone another way. And it makes my heart ever so grateful that this is where I am. As I see the unfolding it makes the next yes, the best yes, a little easier. Because fear screams so loudly at times and that's when He steps in and whispers what I know. Perfect love, His love, casts out fear. And I can do hard things through Him. And again this verse...
Philippians 4:6 Don’t be anxious about things; instead, pray. Pray about everything. He longs to hear your requests, so talk to God about your needs and be thankful for what has come. 
He makes me strong. And fearless. Thankful. 

5 Minute Friday - Wait

Five Minute Friday - 4

Wait. The word made me smile quietly on the inside. It's the word that used to make my heart race and cause me to break out in a cold sweat. Waiting did not kill me as I supposed in the early days it might. It has taken on its own kind of strength in me at this point. Because my wait has been the longest kind of not yet I could have ever imagined. Yes....wait. We are friends of sorts. I am beginning to see the beauty in the waiting. The things that He uses time to grow and mature. The young fruit of the branches is often beautiful, yet hard and unripe on the inside. Its time not yet come. He allows the wait to create the fullness and richness of what it is to be. And that just takes time. What have I made of this wait? So many days I squander its potential. But nothing is wasted in His hands, no. And the beauty that this foundation has brought could have only come for waiting for the proper time. It is not quite done. The beautiful fruits are appearing. But their time is set by the Hands Who know just the right time. That know when the wait should be over. And as fear loves to whisper to me ever so often....surely it won't come. Such a long wait you have had...much longer than should be.  Perhaps you missed it. Pick what's there to fill your hands..... I know better. And I am learning to say, with much certainty, no fear, simply, NO. Thankful.


It was beautiful. It tugged at my heart. No...not practical right this second.  I felt like He was speaking to me, but I didn't do it. And the next day it became very apparent I should. And as much as it began as something entirely different, it became a gift to me as well. I'm not a jewelry wearer unless it has purpose. Everything I wear has a story. That being said, sometimes the stories behind them make me not want to wear them.  Then I saw these. There is so much new. So much changing, yet some things remain the same. Anchors. And that was the purpose for these. And for the one I would share with another. We are bound by a God who loves us and reminds us that our names are written on the palms of His hands. Such value. Such worth. And I wanted the things I love most to be there each day. Their names written. And to remind another of their worth. That they are always loved. No matter the distance. Fear crept in and shouldn't.....and I heard Him whisper....No fear. NO. Thankful. 

Sunday, January 25, 2015

5 Minute Friday - Share

How do I do this when I don't even know what THIS is? And in the quiet flippings of the pages I found it. I listened. He answered. I have been given so much grace and mercy, I can't not share it. Even when it hurts, not extending it would hurt more. He gives to us what we need to share with those around us. That comes from the breaking. All this, this life, this broken, this tearing, these share. And in that I find wholeness. Not by withholding, but by recklessly giving everything I am trying to hold on to. If you can share it, your words, your time, your tears, just your very are opening yourself up to recieve it. It's in the letting go where fear whispers. It's then I am learning to whisper right fear, no. Thankful.


Is it possible, I had to loose. Loose to find it. Because to find it that way, after a loss, after you just knew it was all but gone forever....the beauty of finding it gives new meaning. The thing that we held, we now hold dear. The thing we took for granted we now deeply cherish. The thing that irritated us seems like a joy to care for. We are geateful. We are blessed. We found all that was lost. Our joy is complete. Yes. Perhaps it's only in the loosing that we are able to find what we told Him we were searching for. He gives us what we need. Thankful. 

Saturday, January 24, 2015

When You Know

Oh this week....I couldn't wake up in the mornings. I haven't felt that way in quite a while. So much churning in my head and in my heart. It left me wordless and quite unable to do much of anything past the required tasks of getting through the days. I questioned everything. My quiet time consisted of pulling the covers over my head and praying for wisdom and direction. Reminding myself over and over who I am. And this morning found me making toddler attempts at something that isn't new to me. And as I listened, He spoke. I can't keep trying to fit myself into this mold of what I believe perfect should be, how I believe one should act and feel and respond. It's just not me. And the times that I allow myself to just take a break....for the love already...I find my joy. I find who I am. And I like her. I know who He made me to be. What He wants from this girl He calls His own. So do it. And like everything else I have done along this journey, get freakin' good at it. Because I am strong and I am capable when I turn it over to Him and just obey. He can handle the rest. And that is freedom. And in those moments, well, there is no fear. Thankful. 

Saturday, January 17, 2015


I asked Him....what was it You told me? What was the promise? I'm afraid I've forgotten..... Joel 2:25....restore the years....yes. That's it. Three years ago this weekend found me pushing myself out of the place that had me frozen in fear. I didn't know what was coming. But I had to take a step forward. I picked up a can of paint and I began covering the walls. Anything to keep my mind from registering the horror I was walking through. Three years later this weekend found me painting again. And I remembered it. Another memory restored. Christmas found me searching, questioning....and stripping wall paper....trying to remove the old.

Things needed to change. I needed a change. And that wallpaper was going. I peeled back the outer layer. Another was waiting. After soaking it and waiting for it to soften, I pulled it away. The adhesive was all that was left sticking to the wall. Little by little I cleaned it. Little by little it was bare. But it was beautiful. It had potential. 

The stripping and cleaning and pulling down old left raw, exposed space. Completely imperfect. Some patches needed to be applied. Then sanded and patched again. The primer brought beautiful consistency to the space. I still had no idea what this would become. The day my dad came over to take down the cabinets and help me pick out materials. I cried. It was so much. And I really had no idea what I was doing. 

I'm the worst painter ever. Ever. And I hate paint. Hate it. It's so very messy. But I learned to patch walls and apply primer and I stayed with mostly white, cause it's safe. You can't mess it up, white. But the back wall should have color. I would tackle that last. 

A few minor set backs and re-dos found me ready this weekend for painting. This was it. I walked out to the shed to see what brushes I might have to finish and I found a whole stash of painting supplies from when we did my girls room a few years back. I saw this near little trimmer tool still in the package. Anything that would help me would be welcomed. That little tool changed everything. I trimmed out all the ceilings and baseboards in just minutes. Where had this been all my life?!? I could paint for days with this thing!! For days....

 We hung the mirrors and cabinets and my one splurge purchase for the space. 

And it was finished. 

And it was beautiful. 

And I had no idea what it would be. But I loved it. I had texted my dad at one point Friday ...I am the Worst. Painter. Ever.  His reply was simple.....Any mistakes you make are fixable..... Me, the girl who has start anxiety because what if it isn't perfect? I let that hard truth settle in. It's fixable. You aren't perfect. It won't be perfect. It will be better. It will be real and flawed and blemished and have it's own character. But it will be good. It is good. And so much better than hanging on to the old for fear of failure. I had nothing to loose but something that was broken. I had to open my hands and trust. I could do this. I was equipped to do this. I had to say no fear, I can't stay here. Thankful. 

Friday, January 16, 2015


Some very hard realizations have been coming lately.  So much so, He has to stop me in my tracks to get my attention.  Looking back that run wasn't so random after all.  There is something about running far, something that makes me let go of everything that is holding me back.  All the walls that I build up.  You can't run and hold on to all that at the same time.  You have to let go to move forward.  And it left me strangely open to some things He needed to tell me.  No fluff.  We are well past that on this journey.  I've been setting aside things that are better left far behind.  Change the pattern to change the answer to the problem.  And so when I woke up last night, the strangest thought came to me.  Why am I sleeping in this same one fraction of a space?  I have an entire bed.  It's my bed.  It's been mine for a long time now. I have had such the older brother mentality.  Yet everything I needed, wanted, was always mine.  I have never been without it.  It never left me, I always had access to it.  I chose not to.  Walls.  And so last night, half asleep and talking to myself, I slid myself and the pillows right to the middle.  And I slept.  I gained territory last night.  Took hold of what was mine all along.  And I'm not so much speaking of my sleeping space, but of myself.  My blessings, my gifts, my own life.  And as so often happens in the letting go, fear whispers, ever so serious, warning....what will happen if you let go of this....what will happen if this is all there is?  Indeed.  What will happen if I just let go? I have no idea.  But then again, no fear, seriously....just no.  Thankful.

5 Minute Friday - Send

Send 2
I asked Him to send me the answer, send relief, send a rescuer, send anything, anyone except me. But He did send me. Unequipped, ill-prepared, fearful, doubtful, tearful me. One step, two step, out on this journey. And looking around I see what happens when He sends such a tiny little girl out on a great big adventure. He sent me out with a hand full of small. I'm coming back with arm fulls of big. He sent me out to strengthen me for what I would gather along the way. Sent me forward when I had no idea where I was going. He knew. He still knows. And what used to be an uphill battle when I was first sent is just a stepping stone. And when He says who shall I send?  I lift up my head and say me Lord. Send me.  And when it comes, because it always does, I have learned to say no fear, no. Thankful.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Clear Eyes

Just pondering so much lately this thing He is doing. I prayed for so long for a miracle. And perhaps the praying was the miracle. Perhaps the truest answer was the change it would bring. Perhaps the realization of that is the biggest miracle of all. I had a last minute race this weekend. And it broke down the walls as it often does. Prepares me for what He's about to say. I didn't see it coming until I did. And then I was face to face with it. Be the constant baby girl.  Yes, wishy washy, back and forth baby girl. Stand your ground and do whatever He tells you for however long that takes. Day in. Day out. Morning after morning. Word by word. Prayer by prayer. And I woke up and looked around and saw the fruit of it. And it is beautiful. And I sense it trying to creep its way in....what if.... No fear, just no. Thankful. 

The Financially Confident Woman - Book Review

I came across Mary Hunt and her website, Cheapskate Monthly, many years ago.  My kids were young, I wanted to stay at home and we were on a very tight budget.  I learned a lot from her insights, wisdom and strategies.  Having the chance to read over her book, *The Financially Confident Woman, these many years later, I was challenged yet again.  Her advice and principals are still the same....spend less than you earn, save money, tithe, it is never to late (or early) to start and there is no excuse not to understand your finances....even if you are a girl.  I have always been responsible for the household budget.  There were times when that was comforting and times when it brought sheer panic.  I have succeeded and failed at being a good steward of what God has placed in my hands.  The last three years have found me having to make many choices I never planned on making.  The foundation that was set long before my world crashed gave me the ability to know what to do and I gleaned many new things in reading Mary's book.  This resource reaffirmed what I believe and what I teach my children.  It's not an easy read, but it is insightful and full of hard truths none of us can really afford to live without.

*I was graciously supplied a copy of this book in exchange for reviewing it.

5 Minute Friday - Welcome

Five Minute Friday - 4

I laid there watching it unfold. A similar repeat of that New Years Day, only it wasn't. There was peace. I was not anxious. There was nothing hanging over my head threatening to over take me. No lies. No wondering. Just peace. Just solid foundation. The knowledge that what will come is being built on a new foundation. And for the first time in a long time, I welcomed this new year ahead of me. I welcomed God into the moment, into my space, into me. I welcomed His reminder that I should not fear.....because He is with me. And He never leaves. Never forsakes. Never goes back on a promise. And I can depend on Him without fear. And I welcomed that beautiful truth. I welcomed His plan. I welcomed the freedom to say no fear, not this time. Thankful.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Old Wells

It. Is. Freezing. Seriously. I'm still bundled up in bed. And I'm not the least bit sad. This week has been exhausting. Getting back into our routines and I must confess, I still have decorations that need to go back where they came from. This week has found me exhausted on every level. Emotionally, physically, relationally, in parenting. I fed my kids fast food for dinner. Our other option would have been eggs and lettuce. They are gracious to me. And I am giving myself mercy. I have one beautiful day off in this week and it used to stress me. Today I am just appreciative to have some time to get my feet back under me. This brand new year has found me asking some hard questions. I've been whinning about being ready for new. I think moreover God wants me to see new things springing up from what He has already given. Forget the former things.....I am sensing it's really more about forgiveness.  Digging out from under all the things that have prevented His blessings from springing up. Right where I am. Where I have always been. Where He has held me. Yes. He is with me. Never leaves or forsakes. I can sow the seeds without worry of want. No fear, just no. Thankful. 

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Faith In The Odd Year

Three years. Day in and day out, it has been with me. On good days and bad days and days when I didn't want to look at it. Days when I wondered if any part of it was even true. Do it anyways. It has been my comfort when I felt I had not one thing else, it has never lied to me or told me things I wanted to hear out of flattery. I have had the outside cover since I was 11 years old. It has my maiden name stamped in faded barely readable letters. The inside pages have been with me since March 20, 1995. Almost 20 years. I depend on it. I need it everyday. It is my hope on the days I want to quit. It's my reminder that His Word will remain, that time cannot change what is the Truth. Three years now, it has become my constant companion. On nights I can't sleep I lay my hand on it. On days that seem unending I find relief in it. In times where I wonder if I have strayed too far again, I find my anchor. My road home. When I wonder if I am ever gonna make it, if this is all just too much....I find my answers. No, fear. No. Thankful. 

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Que Sera Sera

Been some late nights around here which make for late mornings. Doing my run at almost noon....6 hours later than normal. But it's habit. It's what I do. It's me. So much has changed about me in three years. This string of days, these dates, they were life changing for me. And as much as everyday God tells me it's time to forget, I think remebering comes first. I think you have to be in a place of healing to remeber and then you can forget. Not necessarily the actions, they shaped who I am, where I am, what God is making me to be. But forget about having to have all the answers, how this is gonna play out, what the ending will be.....who will win. That's been the thorn in my side. And walking up the long drive this morning, I heard myself saying how Lord how? And just as quickly I said...never mind. That's Your business. No, fear. No. And peace. Forget about all that....remember Who He is.....and who you are baby girl. I read 2 Samuel 7:27-29. Yes. That is my prayer. You build it. Thankful. 

Friday, January 2, 2015

How Many Coats?

The panic began to rise. Who decided this was a good idea?!? What was I even thinking?? I'm horrible at this and it is going to look worse than before.  Why couldn't I have left well enough alone?  Me and a can of paint.....against the big empty wall. Did I mention I am the worst painter?  I got a solid coat on and shook my head. Maybe it was the fumes. So I went to begin my clean up. And I kept trying to come up with ideas that would salvage my poor bathroom. Poor, poor bathroom. And I kept saying over and patient. Let it settle. Let it dry. And go from there. It became quite obvious I would not be finishing this quick little project over the weekend. Quick being comical at this point. I talked to my dad. Just let it dry. Fill in the imperfections and sand them. Then paint another coat of primer.   Yes. The primer brought out all the rough spots I missed. But it also brough unity and consistency. I can't stop looking at it. It'sbeautiful. Even with the blemishes. So much better than before. So much better than pretending like the horrific wallpaper was just fine. So much better than pretending like the way things have been were the way they needed to be. Peeling it all back layer by layer. Letting the light reveal the rough spots. Laying them smooth. No, fear. Just no. Thankful. 


Along with the do not fears and the forget the olds, He threw in the one thing that was the first thing He said to me. Before it ever went south. Before I ever had an inkling of what really was to be. 1 Corinthians 13. And that verse became the structure, the outline, the skeleton, if you will, of what He wanted from me....for me. It's the reminder He sends on the days when I doubt I can even take another breath. Love never fails. It doesn't. It's why He came. It's how He overcame. It's how I will do this thing He has asked. It's how I have come this far and how I will continue. His love through me....Will. Not. Fail. It hasn't looked one thing like I thought it should. It has been unyielding, hard and sometimes unkind. Bloody, dirt under your nails and mud on your face from the falls that humble, but allow you a perspective and a platform you never dreamed. It has taken more than I believed I had to give. Over and over again. It has ripped my heart out and made me think that this was the stupidest thing He has ever asked of someone. Yet it changed me. You see when love is offered it changes the giver and the receiver. Neither may know or even see it, but it does. It's there. It plants seeds and believes that the good will come. Yes. Because it doesn't fail. He doesn't fail. With love, you have it all. You won the lottery. You got the prize. Love. Thankful. 

Thursday, January 1, 2015


It's a Day 1. I'm three years out from my last Day 1. The one that shook me and stripped me bare. The one where my life began again. Because I had prayed to The One. Help me.... I said. And so He did. He destroyed all that was destroying me. And part of me went with it. So it is really a double Day One. That year day one of a new year that brought about the death of all I knew. And that first Thursday when my world changed. The day I also picked my journal back up. The day my words came, like drops out of a faucet that preceded the torent that will be. Yes. This day, this date, this decade for me. Again and again. Forget the old, the new has come. And yes, I am perceiving it. I am. I awoke to do the same thing I have done for three years now. Three. It took this long to let it settle in. Before, I would go for weeks, months, without my words. And now, no matter what, they are here. It began with pen and paper. Then He brought me to this place to meet amazing people. To share my words, my voice and to find help on this path. Today I have both. My pen and paper, this space to share with others and the knowledge that this is who I am. And that I can see the change in me. That this was not wasted. Today is the beginning of something amazing. I know it. Thankful.