How I got here | Talking Sex, Love and Relationships

I always felt comfortable on  stage- most like myself, actually- alive and free; whether I was dancing, presenting, competing or public speaking.

I thought I was destined for New York.

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While I grew up Roman Catholic- going to church and private school – I was twenty one before I came to Jesus; largely through hours of driving, listening to Praise 106.5.

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I accepted Jesus in Seattle, in-front of thousands, in a public arena. Somewhere in that time, I stumbled upon this video. It was a complete accident– a divine happenstance. But as I watched it, I began to sob.

In my heart I heard these words, as clear as day: 

This is what you’ll do…

The video was of a fiery Latina, who preaches Jesus to students. She was hilarious and real and honest in a way I hadn’t yet experienced. I was very new to Evangelical Christianity- still ribbed by the staunchness of the Catholic Church.

I laughed. Cried more. Then rewatched the video a dozen times.

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It didn’t make logical sense…. how could this possibly be my calling?!

I was a rebellious, religious screw up, currently living with my boyfriend and sleeping out of wedlock. My sin card was overflowing. I’d barely tasted Jesus and I didn’t know my bible. Plus, my sights were set on buying a wedding business. 

And yet, deep within my heart, I knew it was true.

It was an other-worldly knowing and I’ve carried it’s assurance ever since.

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Years later- perhaps five– I was wrestling with my purpose. I was knee-deep in building my (wedding) business, I was successful and yet, I struggled.

One afternoon, I stumbled upon that video again and just like the first time, my heart responded. 

Then over the course of twelve months,  three different people referred me to an organization- the same organization. I dismissed each one of them.

I saw no connection to myself, my gifts and this non-profit. In fact, I wasn’t sure I even believed what they did!

Then a friend- who I later understood has prophetic gifting- took matters into her own hands. She submitted my name and credentials to them…. and then they called.

So, I relented and went in for an interview

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…. I didn’t even know what for and neither did they! There were no formal openings or jobs posted, but they we’re always looking for volunteers.  For whatever reason, they knew I was meant to be there- I was, “supposed to be part of the organization…” as they put it.

They invited me to a leaders conference with three of their board members. I hadn’t even been hired yet and this was uncommon practice for volunteers.

While there, I became triggered and broke down in the women’s bathroom. One of the board members came in and held me in her arms. I ended up sharing my personal story.

She said she knew why I was there: God wanted me to be a part of Healthy Relationships- a team of presenters that goes into high schools and talks to youth about sex, love and relationships. It was honest, raw and vulnerable work, that took brave people willing to get messy and share their story.

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I had barely begun to process this part of my story- the years of pain and heartbreak in my relationships-  but again, my heart knew.

I was terrified.

I had no idea what this would entail, but I said yes and so I began. 

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I volunteered for two years, when the directors role for the program became available. My boss (and his boss) asked me if I’d consider taking the position. I said no. Three times. After all, I had a successful wedding business to run and that was my plan.

Six months went by.

No one applied for the job.

Then, someone didn’t work out.

Still, the position sat open.

Then one morning, a women sat-in on my talk.  I asked her why she was there and if she was considering volunteering for the team. She said no… She was interviewing for the directors role.

Suddenly, I was nerved. Then I became furious. The whole way home, I yelled at God… about nothing. What was this really about? Then, he showed me:

The position was always mine.

I just had to take it.

And accept His Call.

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When I told both bosses what happened, they laughed. They’d known along along…

I felt like the punch line of a bad joke! Like I’d been kept from some grand scheme!

They told me they’d been praying and patiently waiting…. for my stubborn streak to clear!

We completed formalities and the position was mine. I was now the Director of Healthy Relationships Community Education. 

Shortly thereafter, God told me to close my (wedding) business, but it was six months before I obliged.

I knew then, that God was asking me to lay down my life- the hopes and dreams I had and the vision I’d held of my future….

The choice was mine.  I could choose my will or God’s.

I could settle for a life I could build on my own, or I could choose the adventure and trust Him- even though, I couldn’t see what was ahead.

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It’s been two and a half years since then and my life has changed dramatically.

I am living that video, walking inside my calling.

It’s beautiful and scary; natural, yet hard. But, it’s all together wonderful! I am exactly where I’m supposed to be, doing the thing God made me for… in this season of my life, anyway.

God has used this position to heal and remake me, from the inside out. It was a lifeline in my darkest season. He’s refining my character through it and cultivating in me a humble, servants hearts. He’s teaching me compassion and perseverence in the face of suffering and I’ve become a prayer warrior because of it!

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It’s front lines battle work; spiritual warfare in enemy territory. It’s the lions den – every day- as we fight culture and the lies of darkness: the perversion and deception that has infiltrated our world’s view of love and sex.

But I have never in my life, seen God move like he does in this program.

It’s powerful, crazy, edifying work.

I have more God stories and seen miracles, than I can count!

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I know, every day, that I am part of something so much bigger and I’m making a difference.

I’m fighting for the one, where no one fought for me .

 

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Slave to Acceptance

15 Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in them. 16 For everything in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—comes not from the Father but from the world. 17 The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives forever. 1 John 2:15-17

As maturing Christians, we understand that our focus should be on Jesus. Like the peeling of an onion, we stip away the layers of gunk from our lives that distract us from his call to love and be disciples of all nations.

As his face becomes clearer and his voice more familiar, we courageously start to see our sin [our shortcomings and areas in which we’ve greatly missed the mark] in plain site.

Our need for Jesus becomes real and extremely personal [why Jesus had to not only die, but for US… for me, personally] and on many accounts, for the very first time, we’re find ourselves on our knees in true repentance.

I believe it’s in this place that God can truely begin his work in us. We see our brokeness as it is, our hearts begin to break open wide and our vulnerability, like a child, seeks the comfort and healing of our father.

3 He said, “For sure, I tell you, unless you have a change of heart and become like a little child, you will not get into the holy nation of heaven. 4 Whoever is without pride as this little child is the greatest in the holy nation of heaven. Matthew 18: 3-4

 

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Humility welcomes change and as Children of God, he wants to transform us and renew our minds- to create in us a new heart that loves as he does, give us new eyes to see the world as he does and begin a renovation project in the home in which he dwells in each of us personally.

He refines us, like a gem stone sent through fire, into an image that reflects and resembles Christ himself and sparkles in the light of day.

As we journey with the Lord, trusting him with more of our deepest selves and giving over our lives to him, we acknowledge the things that have for so long, kept us from him and stolen our attention from the one who’s most important. Our idols [anything we place on a pedistal and seek, desire or praise before our Lord] begin to show themselves and we come to understand the jealousy our father has for us.

As a society we’ve become slaves to this world. We tend to see and work to rid ourselves of idolatry in it’s obvious forms, like selfishness, greed, gossip, material possessions and the need to be recognized.

Many times, however, we fail to see the sometimes bigger things that keep us from deeper intimacy with our God…
 

Our pride. Our need to succeed. Our obsession with control [which is the biggest oxymoron of all] and many times, our desperate need for approval.

 
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Approval is a scary thing because it creeps in and disguises itself in seemingly harmless ways:
  • trying to fit in with the women at church
  • sitting back as people slander the Christian faith, the church and Jesus’ name
  • keeping our faith to ourselves
  • omitting our “sunday selves” from our “weekday selves”
  • hanging out and doing things that contradict our moral values, because we’d otherwise “never see anyone”
  • being lukewarm on a public platform and in our careers, for fear of facing advertisty or harsh critics
and most unrecognized….. the deep routed and desperate pursuit of approval from our families- as women, particularly our mothers- and friends. Anyone with me?

“Anyone who comes to me but refuses to let go of father, mother, spouse, children, brothers, sisters—yes, even one’s own self!—can’t be my disciple. Anyone who won’t shoulder his own cross and follow behind me can’t be my disciple. Luke 14:26

Too often, we seek the acceptance of our moms, our friends and our communities, before the very one who saved us and loves us more than anyone ever could! He accepts us exactly as we are; no need to change, impress,  or be approved of!

You shall have no other Gods, only me! Exodus 20:3

While you might say approval is not a god, it’s pursuit is certainly an idol; one thats keeps us in bondage, endlessly chasing after it. We become slaves to it and it dictates the very things we do and how we do them!

God might call us to move across the country, leave our cushy corprate job to help the homeless or share our faith boldly with our families but we reject HIM, ignoring his call, in fear of rejection from THEM!

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This sin eats away at us. This sin, my friend is slavery!
We struggle to justify our wrong and avoid God when we most need to confess. But, he is always ready to forgive. Because nothing we gain from sin is ever worth keeping, when it keeps us enslaved and bound up before him. We need to trade our yoke of slavery for his yoke of freedom and liberty!

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While it’s easy to say and hard to live, we’ll soon realize:

The things we fear most in letting go of are the very things that hold us back…

from true transformation, from our personal call in life, from lasting joy and from freedom- the freedom that Jesus so willingly died for, as a gift. And my friend,  it’s time we take it.

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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.” Matthew 11:30

Was Jesus just a Good Man like Ghandi

Totally not my normal style, please forgive the poor quality of this video.
I’m trusting this message was put on my heart for a reason and I pray it reaches the person who needs to hear it. Perhaps that’s you….

Was Jesus just a Good Man like Ghandi?

Thank you for your grace, friend. 

Grief Filled Grace

My entrance into motherhood was anything but pretty. It shattered every elegant notion and bliss-filled fantasy that I had held onto in my 9 months of waiting. I don’t know why I was shocked when reality came crashing down… my wedding experience was no different.

This is how God has refined me time and time again; in the shattering of my perfect laid plans that my mess has become my message – where God has humbled me, stripped me raw and taught me grace, compassion and love for others, as well as myself.

I had been praying for the last year that he would heal me from the things that still held me hostage after years of trying everything [in my strength] to fix myself and for the first time in my entire life I believed he would, with every fibre of my being.

And a strange knowing told me motherhood would be the beginning of that journey.

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It started with my pregnancy roller coaster: the inability to control my every changing body, not being able to run or workout past 12 weeks, facing my fear of food to discover it as fuel, and weeks of tests and complications that had no answers. All the while I felt alone, like I didn’t know who to trust or turn to for answers. Was there a right one?!

I was slowly accepting the reality that only God knew. As much as the doctors could tell me one thing, God was ultimately in control of this pregnancy.. of my hearts condition … of my healing journey.

My delivery was point 2 seconds in before my birth plan got ripped to smithereens and as I grieved my loss of control there [like I had any in the first place over this!] God began a work in my heart preparing me for the trauma of what was ahead.

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I never dreamed I’ve be hooked up to IV’s, summoned to a bed and without [any] food or drink for nearly 48 hours. I never dreamed I’d hear the words “undiagnosed pre-eclampsia. You might want to call your family. ” or that a weeks recovery in the hospital would be just the beginning; that my daughter would spend that same duration in intensive care, subjected to test after test asking a “why” that still isn’t answered. That I’d blame myself or that this would open the flood gates of grieving the loss of my 6 month old brother when I was 6 years old- a pain I’d never been able to touch.

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I feared every day that my daughter would die. That God would take her from me and I’d be a heap of nothing on the floor forever….

And while anxiety surged hourly panic attacks through my veins and my fear bore witness to a woman unrecognizable to those who love me most, it brought about a vulnerability I’d never dared let anyone see- not my husband, my family or even God. It ushered in conversations I’d played out in my head for years, confessions of anger and frustrations and most beautifully, the asking of forgiveness for the ways I’d judged, blamed and harboured resentment for years- some my entire life.

And it was there, in the midst of my ugly brokeness, that my healing began. That I came to the end of myself and finally took Gods hand admitting defeat. And like a switch, my heart changed and I surrended. Fully surrendered to whatever God has planned for me.

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While I wish I could tell you things got easier from that point on, they didn’t and I’d go on to walk 8 weeks of darkness before the sun would shine again; the anxiety still plagued me, worry was my best friend, tears were my comfort and a quiet numbness kept the Kailey of yesteryear seem far far away. Yet God felt near and more real than ever before. I could feel his arms hug me, his palm cup my face and his whispers sing delight over me.

With every new dawn, I would extend a trembling open palm accepting each day as grace; every messy, unknown part of it.

And slowly but surely, my standing turned into walking and my walk into a run; my murmurs to grumbles, my grumbles to signing and signing to shouts of praise.

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A mere 3 months in, I still go back to that place when all feels hopeless and my weakness seems all consuming in this thing called motherhood. But Im learning what it truly means to lean on God, to know his strength rather than my own and to keep glued my eyes on him while everything else grows gravely dim.

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I’m settling into the passengers seat and for the first time, enjoying the ride.

He Touched and She was Healed

He touched her hand and the fever left her; and she she got up and began to wait on him. – Matthew 8:15

Jesus has authority over all evil that is a result of this fallen world. He speaks a word, he gives a touch and people are healed; made new and restored to wholeness. He does this to glorify God.

At the time of this story, the Bible tells us that Jesus healed this woman “to fulfill what what spoken through the prophets: He took up our infirmities and bore our diseases.” vs. 17

In todays world, Jesus blesses to gift us with a taste of what the whole world will one day experience in God’s kingdom. It’s a glimpse.

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When God chooses to heal us or bless us it is an unnecessary and willful act of love; a gift. Yes he loves us and yes he wants to see us happy, but first and foremost it is to glorify God and give testimony to his goodness and power.

It’s always been about God first and never about us. We are here to make manifest him!

His acts of love are not mandatory. They are a free gift lavished upon us in mercy and kindness. Our response then should be one of gratitude and debt.

How else would you respond to someone who gave you a gift of incredible value and selfless love?

Say your life for example. You were standing before a judge who had pronounced the death sentence for you and some man stood up and said he’d take your place. An exchange. His life for yours. The judge agrees and you go free….

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Too often, our response to God’s blessings is one of entitlement or expectation, like he owes us something for our “allegiance.”

Yes, we should expect God to answer our prayers, but it won’t always be in our time or our ways. While God loves us and desires for us to know and experience joy in this life, he ultimately wants to be the source of that joy- just him and his relationship – that isn’t dependent on circumstance.

His delight in us sure isn’t based on our performance (ha!) so why then, so often, is our devotion weighed on a scale of his ability to “bless us” and answer our prayers the way we’d have it?

Jesus is far more concerned with our hearts condition than with our comfort or circumstance. He wants to see us grow up and mature spiritually, moving beyond asking what God can do for us, to a place of asking what we can do for him.

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Peter’s Mother-in-law, the women healed in Matthew 8, is a perfect example of how we should respond to Jesus, especially in times when we receive his touch; his blessings, his gifts.

To love and devote our lives in service.

Immediately, not after she did the things she needed to or after she got bored, immediately she got up and waited on him. She served Jesus.

She responded to his act with acts of her own that blessed him. She received his love and lavished it upon others in return.

These are the things he calls us to. This is the heart of God; Love and Service, all as an outpouring of gratitude in response for all thats been done for us… already.

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So let me ask you. How have you responded to God in the past? How will you respond to him today? Right now? And with the vary gift of your life?

 

Pray with me:

Lord, Thank you for your love that you so graciously lavish upon me. Thank you for your desire to know me and be known by me.

Help me to respond to your love in a way that is worthy and honouring to you- to receive your blessings and love and respond with my life as an outpouring in thanks for all your are to me and all you’ve done for me. But not just for the now or the blessings of my current circumstance, but for what has already been done, accomplished and made available to me, through Jesus’ ultimately loving and selfless sacrifice on the cross.

Ignite in me a passionate desire to seek you, love you and serve you, devoting my life to the things of your heart. Fan in me your flame and may many come to know and experience your love for themselves, through me.

In Jesus’ name, Amen.

When you’re Struggling to Care about What’s Happening in Iraq

The honest truth is, I felt numb to what their now calling a “Christian Genocide.”

I cannot even comprehend such suffering in my wrapped up pretty, over privileged North American Life. But while my mind can’t fathom the horror, my heart has less than stirred for my Christian Brothers and Sisters in Crisis. Why? I won’t go on a “cushioned life” tangent, but simply put, because I feel so far removed.

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I’ve felt shame these past weeks; disgust with myself and the fact that my heart wasn’t breaking nor did I seem to really care. And so I kept quiet. Bound by the lies that I’m a joke of a Christian. That I don’t deserve to even call myself one. I’m a fraud. A sham.

…The perfect stomping grounds for the one who comes to lie, cheat, steal and destroy.

“Don’t even pretend you care by chiming in or share anything on social media! Don’t talk about it with others. That’s being a hypocrite!”

And so I didn’t. I’ve stayed quiet, for weeks; mute both inwardly and otwardly, afraid to even admit the truth to my Father.

I’ve watched from the sidelines as friends and mentors have shared updates, prayers and pleas for those suffering the unthinkable.

And then last night, God did what he always seems to resort to when this stubborn legalist can’t seem to remember what grace is.

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I stumbled upon a video. The man shook and cried,

“There are people dying and no one seems to care! There is no help. There is no aid. How can we simply stand back and watch a genocide occur?! Please do something. Anything that you can. Pray!”

He pleaded with the camera and within seconds I felt the two-by-four of power overcome me. The Holy Spirit moved me to pray, words I hadn’t dared to utter until now.

“Lord, I don’t care. I want to but I don’t! I feel so awful even admitting that to you, but worse, pretending that you don’t already know! If anything is going to change, it needs to be you. Oh please Lord, change my heart. Give me the capacity to love like you do and move in me, so that the things that break yours pierce mine.”

I sat back, felt nothing and waited.

Because that’s the thing with our Father. When we come to him in sincerety, when we’re honest and confess, he is faithful to forgive us and slap the guilt right gone from us. And when we pray, in the vine for his will, does he surely not listen and answer?! Of course.

… in his time and his ways.  So I simply waited, trusting that he would do in me, what only he could do.

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This morning I woke to this article and knew it was my answered prayer:  5 Things we can do right now, that will ACTUALLY help our brothers and sisters.

As I read, my heart beat fast and I could hardly finish before starting to pray… before wanting to share the article… before jumping to speak up using the gift of words he’s given me.

My heart change!

Yes he is capable of far more than we can ever ask or imagine. What is impossible with man is possible with God… even when it comes to renovations of the heart!

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So while I cringe writing this, afraid of what you might think of me – That you might look down on me and think I’m less of a person; Less of a Christian- deep down, I wonder …. if sharing my truth is freeing to even one person, bound by the same guilt that I’ve felt.

That somewhere, you’re looking for a nudge – the permission to confess your numbness and move beyond silence to taking a stand.

This is it. You’re not a bad Christian. You are not unworthy to speak or to pray. Go to your Father who loves you. Seek and you will find!

 

Praying with you, my friend, for hearts that desire to cry out for our Christian Brothers and Sisters.

When all seems hopeless and you feel like a freak

“That’s a lofty dream.” My Grandmother nearly whispered it, almost hesitant, I think somewhat saddened by what she’d say next. “Just remember. You’re only one person and it’s hard to change the world.”

My heart sank for her. That isn’t my Jesus at all, I thought.

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Sensitive to not invite another eye roll from that evenings family dinner with my “Jesus freak talk”, I quietly shared…

“Well for me, it’s not about numbers or quantity. If I can help save even one person from the pain and hardship- change the trajectory of even one life or one marriage- then I want to. And that’s success in my eyes.”

I was quiet for a moment. Unsettled. That wasn’t the full truth. So I finished, no longer caring how I looked, or sounded.

“Jesus cared about the one life- the one sheep. He invested in the lives of twelve, which eventually changed the entire world. He is the perfect example of love, because God is love. Who am I then to think that modelling exactly that is a waste of time or not worth spending my life on?”

I could feel the weight of decades worth of broken dreams piling at her feet- the armour she wears , the result of a hard life lived- deflecting my words at lightening speed.

She said nothing.

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I remember the day that would have broke me- her silence throwing me into a tizzy of “I’m different dispare,”; and for days I would fight for the ones I love most to hear the Gospel and not reject it – wanting desperately for my family to understand me, to not think i’m wierd or that this is just another phase, “a Jesus phase,” that will too, soon pass.

But instead, my heart ached for the things that break His; here,  a women, so beautiful, so loved, so treasured and CHOSEN and she doesn’t even know it! Or maybe she does, yet continues to choose darkness and live with clenched fists raised high, rather than open palms receiving grace.

So I did the only thing I could think of – the one thing that can soften that heart and open it to the rhythums of his ways with thanks – I prayed.

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Lord, sometimes life feels so broken and people appear hopeless. On many days, it feels like we’re a one man army, standing against ten thousand troops of darkness. But let us not bow down in defeat, for we have victory at our fingertips- The Lord of all triumph at our side and the greatest weapon on our lips.

Let us live a life of prayer, asking in your Name for what is only possible by your power- your works…. that changes us first, so that we may be used by you for your kingdom good.

Help us to remember that it is not our duty, but yours to change lives and soften hearts toward you. And that you are always at work, watering seeds, even when it feels like ground is dry and barren and the seeds we plant have been snatched just as quickly as we’ve sown them.

Because with you, nothing is impossible, only possible.

A few loaves fed five thousand, mere morals have walked the water, the lame have been healed and the dead have been raised to life again!

Those who pillaged your people have come to save them and those who’ve denied you, now preach your word! For your Kingdom is made of outcasts and sinners now redeemed and the sick and broken, healed and spared….

including me. 

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But we mustn’t forget the key to such power; Giving thanks for what may seem impossible, but is possible, only through Christ.

Let my thanksgiving precede the miracle, each and every day, in every circumstance – big and small – hard or joyful.

For it is all a gift and it will all be used for good, if we’ll simply give it to you in thanks.

Leaving room for miracles

When The Lord saw that Leah was not loved, he enabled her to conceive. Genesis 29:31

Our Father is a gracious father, who loves us unconditionally. His heart breaks for the things that break ours no matter how big or small. He grieves when we grieve, he rejoices when we praise and his desires to see us prosper in a hopeful future.

But by proposer, I don’t necessarily mean financially. I mean to flourish in the places he has put us; to have hope and joy beyond circumstance.

Leah was given to a man that did not want her and The Lord saw her. He wanted her to be loved and appreciated, so He blessed her with Child.

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She gave him praise, but like us, far too often, she worshiped God while clinging to her earthly desires- expecting him to answer her prayers and heal her wounds in the way she felt was right and just.

“The Lord has seen my misery. Surely my husband will love me now.” Genesis 29:32 B

Three more times would Leah conceive, each time thanking God while focusing on her plans and making clear her expectations of Him… God that is.

Hear that. Expectations.

Oh how I have expectations for my life. And make them very clear to my Father. So often I dawn a Leah mindset, making known and clinging to my hopes and expectations for this life, like he owes me something for my “allegiance” to him.

But heres the thing; our hopes and expectations are so small! Compared to what God is capable of, our plans are akin to making sand castles in the mud slums because the idea of white sand at the beach is incomprhensible.

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The problem isn’t that our expectations are too high – it’s that we are far too easily satisfied.

Keeping our fists clenched, clinging to hopes for a “pretty little life,” we stifle space for God in our plans…

We don’t leave room for miracles!

Because that’s what he is capable of if we’ll simply make room and let him!

Miracles. Glory.

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Yes, that’s what I desire to see in my life, more than the fulfillment of my demands and expectations. They never satisfy anyway… for long.

I know. I chased achievement after achievement; always raising the bar and never satisfied. 

Why? Because theres a hole in each of a us; one that God artfully created for a purpose and that purpose is him. It’s a void that only he can fill.

But so often, we try and stuff it full of the things of this world- distractions, busyness, influence, significance, accomplishment, possession, control– even good things, like service and loving others – and allow our actions to blink a no vacancy sign to the baby looking for an inn.

And when the sign flashes, God moves on.
No he doesn’t leave us. No he doesn’t disown us and not love us.

He simply knows how we’ll respond. He searches for an open hole- a willing and longing heart that desires to know him- to hear him…

to live for him, rather than ourselves.

It wasn’t until her fourth child, that Leah would mature enough and let Go of her expectations, simply giving God praise and surrendering her need to be loved by a man.

“This time I will praise the Lord.” Genesis 29:35

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What heart ache could God have spared her if she had simply run to him from the start? How powerfully could he have revealed himself to her and comforted her, if she would have trusted him for the answer? How many laps around the mountain and years wandering in the desert of despair could he have saved her from, giving her joy and contentment in its place? How could he have used her to relate to others in similar situations and bring him glory?

We’ll never know. But if his promises are true, and I know they are, it would have been something to write home about!

Because when we seek him with our whole heart, there we will find him. And when we ask for what we need to do his will, he will give it to us abundately. And when we trust him with our lives, he will finish what he has started in us, taking our threads to weave a masterpiece.

A life that shines of his Glory and goodness.

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Let’s not be like Leah or the Israelites wandering in the desert.

Lord help us to trust you with our lives, beyond our feelings and our circumstance, clinging to your promises and running to your for our every need. Because you are our best friend, our confidant, our healer, our comforter, our forgiver, our only hope and security! Help us to love you with our whole hearts and desire to know you unlike anyone one. Because the more we seek your face, the more we’ll taste glory and live the life we were made for!

Symphony of the Creator

I woke to gentle light pouring in on the first day of spring.
Pulling the curtains back, I am still not yet accustomed to the dancing of sun on the inlet below.

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A symphony of song birds bid me good morning and the gentle tune my mother would sing me as a child lingers…

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Good Morning to you. Good morning to you. Good morning, good morning. it’s lovely to see you!

With the window cracked, I can smell the great outdoors.
Spring is coming.

People walk the wooden water path.
I smile.

Goodness I love where I live.

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For far too long, I’ve praised the creation of my tiny inlet village, rather than the one who’s hand brought it into existance.

And it wasn’t until I read those words that my ignorance struck me.

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Every time you feel in God’s creatures something pleasing and attractive, do not let your attention be arrested by them alone, but, passing them by, transfer your thought to God and say: “O my God, if Thy creations are so full of beauty, delight and joy, how infinitely more full of beauty, delight and joy art Thou thyself, Creator of all!” –  Nicodemus of the Holy Mountain

As I’ve counted my gifts, my mind has awed at the mundane graces before me. My body has bowed to the luxuries of everyday ordinary. My soul has found solace in a thanksgiving harvest of simple.

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But it’s stopped there most days.

Sure I can acknowledge The One behind these hidden gems- can recognize the need for orchestration in the treasure hunt of creation. But have I truly pondered it each time I’ve discovered my next prize?

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Like the song birds… do I truly consider that their chorus resembles the way He sings over me, in anticipation of my waking?

The wind rustling through the forest trees and the dandelions swaying in the fields…they, the way He dances over me in joy and celebration of simply who. I am. not. what. I’ve. done.

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The reflection off the waters edge too striking to simply pass by – the vary nature of my own reflection in Him.

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After all, I too was created in his imagine and am being refined more and more each day into the likeness of His precious Son!

I see it now, as the scales of ingratitude chip off my eyes.
My heart feels full. Almost radiant.. what is that?

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Hope, He whispers, Longing for me.

A deep desire for the wholeness only I can give. .
Your heart knows it; it feels it.

You’ve entered my gates with thanksgiving, my child, and you’ve feasted your eyes on glory- looked straight into the eyes of your very creator.

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I taste my miracle. Eucharisteo in flesh and real life.

This is the art of joy, of gratitude and praise!

Praise of The Creator, not the created.

Abiding in the Wait

Over and over the bible teaches what it means to abide in God. Over and Over I’ve brushed past it. Until last night.

To Abide: to wait on, to rest in, to simply be with The Lord.

Like a ton of bricks it hit me…

Do not let anyone rush you into anything. He said. You need this time to get to know me to prepare for what’s ahead.

I remember his words that were spoken over me last year and the not so gentle reminder he gave this past fall, as I retraced my dictation and wrote his words out again, placing them somewhere I’d see daily.

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You see, this go getter likes to run a head. She most days feels jostled with a hunger to run and “take on.” Change has never sacred me. In fact I crave it.

The words of my mother still cut like a sword. “The queen of re-invention.”

But the truth of the matter is He made me this way, built restless and eager to sprint, for Him- to build and cast vision for his name sake.

Heavens, he’s showed me my future in many ways. I recount. I recount the ways he has.

But like Joseph, I’m so impatient. And immaturely wave the vision prematurely. It would be 25 years before he’d see his brothers bow before him.

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And then theres Abram, oh Abram. My father indeed.. God promised him an heir of his own blood to take possession of his estate, despite his old age. In fact he promised him more descendents that the stars in the sky.

And then the chapter ends. 15. and rolls into 16….

Ten years have passed. TEN YEARS.. of what? I ask. Waiting? Oh gracious Lord help me.

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Ten years of abiding before another word is penned in his story. And he is the Father of our faith?! What does that mean for my story.

My pride sulks and my ego feels bruised. This girl would rather cling to the notion that big is better and theres no time to sit on the sidelines. After all we have a race to run. People to save. A God to glorify.

Hush child. Just sit with me. And learn the rhythyms of grace. Give your heart time to catch up with your mind or your gifts will overtake you…. away from me.

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Remember, salvation is a gift. Love is an overflow. No act of doing, achieving and winning will change that.

Oh, I know. really I do. I just sometimes get ahead of myself. It’s this restlessness you’ve put inside me. I never knew what it was before and I used it for all the wrong things. But you gave me it for you! For your namesake.

Indeed. But learn from your father Abram. 10 years may pass, but my promises are still good. Don’t run ahead and try to force my ways in your own strength. Your understanding is futile and small. You’ll see. What I have planned is way better than you could ever, ever imagine.

For now, lets simply sit together and be still. Draw close and let me love on you. I want you to see me for who I truly am, in the darkest of nights, away from the crowds, in the closet of your suffering and the boredom of ordinary.

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This is where faith is tested and your character strengthened. Give me your threads and I promise to make a masterpiece.

and like a dazed child, I oblige, trusting what daddy says is best.