Saturday, April 25, 2015

Getting Unstuck

I suppose at times I should get a bigger phone. A newer one. But I'm not that girl. I'm a holder-onner. It's a word. It's one of those things that I feel like God made not wear out through all this walking. It was a special gift. It means something. I realize it's a phone. But I write 90% of what I write on this phone. I make notes, write sentences, words....on this little phone. It was a day of profound revelation and truth. And these days usually find me outside. I need air when He speaks. When He changes me. The sun peaked out and I grabbed my bathing suit and camped out. He's too much to be contained by walls and doors today. I need to breathe so I can process these words.

I've been reading my books for review. And I started one that challenged me right along with everything else challenging me these last couple weeks. Life Unstuck. Stuck is a word I use frequently. Stuck is something I feel more often than I admit. But as I read through these pages that described Psalm 139 in great detail, my perspective changed. My perceptions changed. And my heart changed too. 

One thing in the Bible that we are instructed to do is pray without ceasing. It took me years to come to grips with what that could possibly mean. In that time,  I have learned more and more that our daily conversations with God in all things are prayers. And He wants us to come to Him always with and in everything. As I was nearing the end of the book, she mentioned prayer and conversations with God dropped down right in the middle of our tasks. The whisper grew louder. Praying without ceasing, without stopping what I am doing at times, but letting that prayer/conversation with God happen as my day is happening. Pray without ceasing our activity, our movement, inviting Him in to the moment, to the task. 

It was a shift in perspective that was life changing for me. How often do I get stuck when I feel like I need to stop everything for that encounter with God? And sometimes that should happen, but mostly, He wants to be so ingrained in our day to day that we share it with Him without missing a beat. Some unsticking over chicken strips and ranch. Thankful. 

5 Minute Friday - Hide


All I have wanted to do lately is hide. Its coming at me from every direction and at some point it feels like the only thing to do is sit down, take cover and let it pass. I can feel the tension in my shoulders. I can see the strain of it all in my face. And I don't know what to make of it really. How in the world did I get here? This was not the plan.....not that any of this has been the plan really. And I tend to want to run from it all. But I am not going to face another do-over. It's that simple. And so the only thing left to do is sit still. Hide in the shelter of Him. Psalm 91. It came last week. Reminding me what to do when these days that feel like a barrage of weight fall down on me. Run to the Shelter. It's ok to hide in Him. It's ok to pull away. To say I can't handle this. To place yourself face down before Him and say what a mess this is. Take it. Not hiding from but hiding in. Taking it all to the only One who knows. Who sees. Who can fix this. And find rest in the hiding place. Thankful.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Meltdowns and Ink

It had been a solid week without peace. And I'm battling myself more than anything else. I know what the answer is. I knew it all along. It's just getting there and I thought my way was best. Funny how I can get all judgy about things while missing the plank in my own eye. Because if I'm honest with myself it's the same struggle, it just looks a little different. I had to get back to the last thing He told me. Yesterday was a train wreck of epic proportions. How in the world did we end up here. Just 9 short days....all hell broke loose. And I couldn't even catch my breath, much less put a thought together. I was surrounded by piles of groceries. A familiar scene that brought me 3 1/2 years backwards. Something about gathering your wits and just doing what's in front of you. And so I did. And with dinner cooked, laundry washed and a vehicle too thrown in for good measure, I stood at the sink. I washed dished and prayed. How Lord, what is happening, this will never work.... And He said to me so matter-of-factly... You gonna take your hands off now? On both counts. Let go. Well then. There is that. The thing He told me. The thing I did. The thing that brought peace, yes. I had picked it up and run with it. The only peace is in the letting go. And when he came to me and needed to print, but low and behold the black ink was out, oh for the love. This is the straw Lord. If I have to go back to town to get this thing, I surely will. But I'm not sure what state I'll be in when I return. Open the drawer.  And I did. Nothing. So I opened the top one all the way out. And there it sat. New in the package. One black cartridge. And I popped it in and he printed. Yes. And my insides screamed thank you. He sees it all. He cares about even the smallest detail. Placed there long ago. For just right then. Prepared in advance. And the rest of this is no different. Let go. And do what's in front of you. He's got this. He does. Thankful. 

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Just The Beginning

I saw it on a shirt today. That verse. And it all tied together and made sense. It's the verse that got me up off the floor three weeks into the nightmare that had consumed me. I stumbled aimlessly for 23 days before I could catch my breath. And once again face down on the floor I told Him...I give up. I can't do this. So I'll do whatever You say. Just makes this stop... And the church on tv.... because it's baby steps when you are crawling your way back. When you have gotten so far away from what you know, church in any form, yeah, I'd take it. I had finally managed to turn it on again. The TV. Because even the normal of that I couldn't stand....that verse. He read it out loud and I turned my head. I looked up. And the tears stopped for a brief second. 

Isaiah 40:31 But those who wait for the Lord who expect, look for, and hope in Him shall change and renew their strength and power; they shall lift their wings and mount up close to God as eagles mount up to the sun; they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint or become tired. 

Yes....He gave me the end at the beginning. And so that verse, it's been coming back round. The beginning at the end....and it all falls into place. And I remembered this week. I took two days to deal with so much swirling around in my world. So much to be done. And I was drowning. So I did the only thing I know. I stopped. I sat still. And I waited on Him to show up.  I got up on those mornings and I ran. Because everything in me wants to run away from this. But He changed all that. He did. So I ran to let go. Ran to understand. Ran to pray. Ran to question. Ran to get something, some sort of answer. And I did. 4 miles felt like nothing the first day. 6 felt even easier the next. What's happening here?? I asked Him. I did. And today, this morning I ran a race in the rain. I ran alone. All my people were in different places in their journey today. Some ahead and some far behind. So it was just me. And I ran my own way. And I wasn't scared. I wasn't tired. I wasn't anxious. I wasn't anything other than me. I was able. It was just like breathing. Just run baby girl. It's who you are. Yes. And my head was down, deep in thought. The beautiful face pacing beside me spoke to me as we rounded the corner and I couldn't help but smile ... There it is! You see it?!? We are almost there.. I saw it. Finish. Yes I saw it. And I remembered the words from another beautiful face last year when I rounded a corner, praying for death or a finish line. And it came. Just at the right time...the finish line, that is. And so I sprinted. Yes. I ran with all I had to the end. I through it all off and ran my race. It's what I'm doing right now. Sprinting the finish. It's hard. It takes all I have. But I will finish. It's nearly done. 

Isaiah 40:1 1-2 “Comfort, oh comfort my people,”says your God.“Speak softly and tenderly to Jerusalem,but also make it very clear that she has served her sentence, that her sin is taken care of—forgiven! She’s been punished enough and more than enough, and now it’s over and done with.” 

Friday, April 17, 2015


It's the week I lost my peace. Everything was on track. I thought I knew the answer. And then I didn't. It was a week of words a week of do overs and right back rounds. It was a week that I had to choose. It was a week I had to fight back my fear. And it gripped every part of me. What is the answer and how do I make this work? What do I do? And the only answer I got was be still. Be still. And it came, very quietly. In when I didn't expect it. And my heart filled to overflow and I did that thing that I was made to do. I loved. Because that's my answer. That's who I am. That's where my peace is. And when I try to be anything else I struggle under the burden of striving, of lack, of never enough. And when He says eyes on Him, it's just not about me. And then I am able. And then the real words come and the healing comes and the fear goes. Because the greatest fear is loosing my words. Letting the wrong things take over and use them up. I will never regret I love you. I will never regret kindness. I will never desire to take that back. And He gives them when I let Him. And they are life giving. Thankful. 

Wednesday, April 15, 2015


All my words feel all used up. Talking instead of typing. Hard words. Not fun words. Fearful words. Backbone words. I didn't want to come back to this valley, yet I'm here. And two days of quiet have left me wondering. And I keep saying I can't hear Him.....and then the rains come in a sprinkle. And I know. He's here. And perhaps that's all that matters. Thankful. 

Sunday, April 12, 2015

What's In The Box

She asked for a wedding ring. He gave her a guitar. And she said what in the world am I gonna do with this? And so she taught herself to play it. And it changed her life. I was watching the story of Loretta Lynn. I look at this right now, knowing what I wanted, what I asked for. And it feels like I got a guitar instead of a ring. But perhaps the One Who is the Giver, sees what I cannot see. That what has been given will allow for something far greater than the immediate I seek. I'm sure her guitar gave way for a ring she never dreamed of when she first asked for it. Ephesians 3:20. Sometimes the box makes us question the gift. So in all circumstances, I am reminded to be ever, thankful. 

Wednesday, April 8, 2015


I thought about it as I drove over the bridge. So much different, but yet the same. The feelings themselves are the things that have changed. We are all grown up. What does that even mean? It feels like when I was 17 years old and finally got to drive on my own for the very first time. I had failed my driving test the first time. I went back the very next day. This was not going to beat me. And I passed. And the angels were singing.... Or maybe that was me saying hallelujah....  Freedom came on a Saturday morning. Hot and humid as southern summers are. And my car...well it had no a/c and no radio. And I didn't care one bit. I manually rolled all the windows down, put my boom box in the passenger seat, amply supplied with a mass quantity of brand new D batteries and I headed onto the freeway. I wore my bathing suit and shorts because it was so hot. I could shower and change at my destination. I was free. And I learned how to drive that stick shift because that was the only way I would be allowed to have a car. And I drove. Half an hour to the other side of town. I drove. I was a grown up.... Insert much sarcasm here. But I sure did believe that I had finally arrived. My heart kind of felt that kind of freedom yesterday. I looked around and here I am. All the things I have worked for, somehow settling in. And we can do this. We are doing this. And it's beautiful. And my heart is full. Thankful. 

Sunday, April 5, 2015


And so I went on the Saturday. The in-between day. I've never done that before. I always followed the rules. It's the Sunday, that day when the good has come, that you worship. That you praise. That you believe. And that has been the way I have always done it. But that isn't what He has called me too. I'm learning that sometimes you have to praise long before you see the resurrection. You have to trust long before you see the evidence of your faith. Because seeing doesn't requires faith. But this certainly does. And I woke up thinking about the grave and the two times I know God emptied it. Two. And both times the grave clothes had to be removed. When He called Lazarus from the grave, he still had to remove the clothes that bound him in death. And Jesus did as well. And perhaps I do too. The old way is gone. Something new is happening. And I can be alive as I want to be and still be bound. By the old. By the grave clothes. But I don't belong in that place anymore. And I have to remove what hinders to go forward. And it's scary walking out of that and into the new. But after three years, I don't belong in this place anymore. The stone is rolled away. Shake off the old. Because that girl, that one who went in, she isn't here. Thankful. 

Saturday, April 4, 2015

The Time In-Between

It's Saturday. The in-between day. This year feels different. That I'm feeling anything at all is different. I have a tendency to just shut it down and let it pass on the hard days. That has been my salvation for the last three years. But I just can't do it anymore. And I keep stepping out more and more and falling flat on my face. And it hurts. And I want to run. But I won't. Not this time. So Good Friday lived up to its reputation and the despair of it all sent me to bed at 8 pm. Despair. I looked it up. The complete absence of hope. Is that what this is? Is this where I have parked my car? Maybe I needed to come here, to despair. What will you do in this place baby girl? Yes. That seems to be the question. It seems fitting that she texted. Are you going to church tomorrow? Not sure I said. I'll be alone.  Alone. Me too she said.  That's why I asked. I didn't want to go by myself.... Oh He sets the lonely in families, He does. And it isn't lost on me that with this in-between day, this Saturday where despair feels like it is holding hope for ransom, I will go there. And I will pray again. Believe again. Ask again. Wait again. Hope again. Thankful. 

Friday, April 3, 2015

5 Minute Friday - Good

Good. I want to believe it. I want to believe Romans 8:28, that in all things, yes even this, He is working it out for my good. Yet I'm struggling. With myself, circumstances, even my words. Even they seem to want to bring anything but good these days. He reminded me of His goodness a couple days ago. I had chosen something for someone else instead of myself. And I was fine with that. I decided to let the other go and that was that. And quite unexpectedly, the very thing I wanted showed up in the locker at the gym. Thank you.... They said. And the gift was more than a gift. He sees the hearts desire and gives it. He desires good for His children. Later He filled it to overflow. This is the same thing I do each week. And yet there was leftover. And she came asking can you spare some? And there was extra. Where there shouldn't have been. His goodness. His mercy. And I'm looking for good where there seems to be none in sight. I need to believe. I need to hope against hope that this is not the end. And I realize there were others that Friday. The others that saw the dream die. That saw what was good all but vanish before their eyes. How can good come from this horrible place? Even though they had seen things, miracles with their own eyes. They had heard the words, His words with their own ears, this seemed to erase it all. The good was no longer. Yet it was this very thing on this very day that would bring goodness into the land of the living.Death for life. The temporary grave for the eternal. Good things often come in bad packages. Thankful.