When you feel scared and you wanna run anywhere but here

We were a mere 24 hours into our trip before the text came in.

“He’s gone.”

…..and then the phone calls one after the other, after the other.

Having left my phone at home to charge, I’d missed ever last one of them.

I was two hours too late. 


I called him back. “What do you mean he’s gone?! What happened?”

“We were out walking and things were going great! He was off leash for over an hour and then suddenly, he took off… And he was gone.

He ran across the highway and before I could do anything he disappeared. I have no idea where he is! I’m so sorry!”

We had left our city dwelling labradooddle with extended family and while they loved dogs dearly, he didn’t know them too well.

I had told myself countless times he’d be fine, but to be quite honest, I had my suspicions. 

Our dog Guinness was abused and neglected as a pup, and when we got him, his behaviour was nothing short of timid, skittish and afraid. It took us months to get him to come out from behind our feet and even longer to mingle with other people or dogs. But with persistence and a patience love, Guinness transformed into the worlds best dog.


He was so loyal and well behaved and never did he need a leash. I could leave him outside a store to roam while I picked up groceries. The idea of running away did not allure him because he’d found home and a love he could trust. 

That is until we dropped him off, reminiscent of the times before he’s been neglected and given up by former owners. He knew he was far from home, that we were gone and and he didn’t recognize his new caretakers. And he spooked. 

Not knowing the whole story- that we were only gone a few days and would return to pick him up- he got scared and ran for his life. Except that where he ran was so much worse.

… onto the highway, into the mountains and far off the beaten path! He was out of our will and so far from our plans for him- our plans to protect him and to love him; plans for his good! 

Hours later in the pitch black some family picked him. He was just sitting there exhausted, they said, on the side of the highway, like he’d given up hope all together.

“If we hadn’t stopped, he would never have made it through the night! It’s bear and cougar country on that mountain pass!”

A cuddly, scared, suburban pup; certainly he wouldn’t have made it home… If it wasn’t for that family!


In his love and mercy, God gave Guinness [our dog] a way out of his own foolishness, and led him back to the safety of our arms. But it wasn’t without a long detour- a 6 hour car ride and an overnight stay in a land and with people he didn’t know; all the while, leashed and restrained – something he wasn’t used to even on his worse days!

And while I sat there shaking my head, I couldn’t help but think of myself;  that I too- perhaps you- have done the very same thing, time and again. 

While I know God loves me and he’ll never forsake me, I don’t always trust his plan. Because let’s be honest, a lot of the time, I can’t quite figure it out! 

In my limited understanding, my fear and my discomfort, I spook and run…. to anywhere but here!

….running in an attempt to take back “control” of my life.


Like Guinness, when I run from the centre of Gods will, I run head on into the wilderness ; to territory that’s far more dangerous and unknown then where I was!

And yet, the same way God rescued Guinness, our Father rescues us.

Ever faithful in his pursuit of bringing us home, he relentlessly chases after us regardless of where we’ve run. And sure, it’s not alway painless coming home – coming back to the centre of God will and his path for us – and it may require we take the long way home and spend some time in places were uncomfortable…

But eventually we’ll get back. 


The same way we were coming for Guinness but our return took shy of 12 hours, so too does our walk with God require us to be patient and to trust that he’s working to get us- to save us, to heal us, to change us and our circumstances- even when we can’t see it or feel it. 

Because regardless of the effort and inconvenience we’ve caused God, in spite of our naivety and our tendency to wander,  he always welcomes us home with open arms and a grateful heart…. the same way we welcomed Guinness home.

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He does not look at us disapprovingly, shaming us for our behaviour. He does not question how, after all this time and after all the ways He’s loved us, we’d could still doubt him. He does not get angry at us out of sheer frustration of the inconveniences we’ve caused him. And He doesn’t give up on us, leaving us to fend for ourselves with the bears. 

He cradles us in his arms and rocks us like a baby, for as long as it takes for us to trust again, knowing in our heart that we are indeed safe and loved, unconditionally.



Going back to Bethel | Meeting God in the middle of Nowhere

” 13 Then God ascended from Jacob in the place where He had spoken with him. 14 Jacob set up a pillar (memorial, monument) in the place where he had talked with God, a pillar of stone, and he poured a drink offering [of wine] on it; he also poured oil on it [to declare it sacred for God’s purpose]. 15 So Jacob named the place where God had spoken with him, Bethel (the House of God).” – Genesis 35:12-15 

I’m going back to Bethel.

Because I’m living in the middle of nowhere right now, on the way to a place I’ve never been, in a place I planned to pass over. A place of transition, if you will.

And after weeks of feeling lost, God answered my plight of prayers. He reminded me of all the times he’s met me in the middle of nowheresville – in the middle of lost, uncertain and unknown- and made me promise after promise, which he’s answered time and again.


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I think back to the college girl who never felt like she had her tribe; who felt misunderstood and jealous of all the bestie’s others clung to. I remember praying, begging God to find me a friend, a genuine friend who would know my heart and never leave me, even when I said the wrong thing or got into a fight. And then he brought me not one, but two, then three; women who loved me in the messy days when I was fighting Jesus and my pride kept me from seeing my need for him. They loved me as I learnt to crawl in my faith and fell down daily. Then picked me up time and again and spoke life and love over me when I didn’t deserve it. And they continue to walk with me today, holding my hand in every bright and beautiful moment; even tighter in the dark and scary ones.

Chantalle. Michelle. Amy. 

And now, I sit weekly with many more woman, who see my ugly heaped up high on the floor, and love me in spite of my mistakes, seeing me for the woman God has made me to be.

Kaley. Abby. Jessica. Alicia. Laura. Carly. Mary. Sue. Heather. Dawn. Diane. 

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I think back to the woman who lay lonely on a futon mattress in a rented room, in a town she swore she’d never live, longing for a place to call home- our home. And how God brought us to this house, even when the ad read “No Pets. Professionals only.” and we were struggling, fresh out of dead-end jobs with a dog. And as we turned the corner, my heart leapt for joy and I told dave boldly, “we’ve found home.”  And it was here, in this sleeping town of Port Moody, where God met me on the trails and began a renovation project in my heart and turned my life upside down.

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And how he led us to Coquitlam Alliance Church, after feeling unknown and unaccepted in our previous one. How again he gave us both the same revelation, at exactly the same time as we walked up the driveway the very first time we attended. “This is home.” And how it was through this church that God spoke like never before, asking us to walk out our faith with our time, our money and our vary lives. And how it was through these convictions that we began to learn generosity, giving and sharing Jesus not just on sunday, but in everyday.


And how that change in our hearts led me to start speaking openly about my faith in my business. And it led me to incredible women who love Jesus too and gave their work to him as an offering. They inspired me to find a mission bigger than myself and changed the entire way I saw the work of my hands.

Lara. Natalie. Emily. Nancy. Gina. 

It was through these woman that God nudged me to trust him with more than just my work, but with our finances and our marriage too. We started  Financial Peace University and paid of $35,000 of debt in 12 months. We now live and aspire to remain completely debt free through new home and business acquisitions.


And how this change in my business, brought more people of faith out of the woodworks, locally this time, and slowly but surely God blessed us with community, here in our little city, in a little industry that seemed God-lost so much of the time. And how God used us to spur each other on and bless each other in just the right time, in just the right ways.

Sarah. Matt. Donna. Nuover. Yinger. Suzanna. 


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I think back to that girl who couldn’t find her identity apart from stuff and achievement. Who was addicted to people pleasing, paralyzed by anxiety (at one point I was house bound and couldn’t be alone for 5 months) and ran from grief and hardship even if it left her friends lonely and scared. The girl who masked her hurt, shame and distrust in negative self-talk and disordered eating; who pretended like she wasn’t broken from years of giving herself away. And how God so gently and lovingly peeled back the layers of the onion, to reveal its stench. Who ripped out the root of those hurts, planted new seeds and continued (and continues to) water and nurture those seeds until I was a new creation – a completely different woman; a transformed life.

“Therefore if anyone is in Christ [that is, grafted in, joined to Him by faith in Him as Savior], he is a new creature [reborn and renewed by the Holy Spirit]; the old things [the previous moral and spiritual condition] have passed away. Behold, new things have come [because spiritual awakening brings a new life]. 18 But all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ [making us acceptable to Him] and gave us the ministry of reconciliation [so that by our example we might bring others to Him], 19 that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting people’s sins against them [but canceling them].” – 2 Corinthians 5:17

And how he’s used the things that hurt me the most to become my message of hope, redemption and freedom.

How he’s used those vary things – the things I wanted to pretend never happened- the things I would have rather died than have people find out about before – to draw me closer to others in community, to lead a group of woman and to speak to youth, empowering them to fight for sexual integrity.

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Because when God shows up in the middle of nowhere – on your way to somewhere you’ve never been, in a place you planned to pass through or stop over on the way to somewhere better – he renames it NOW HERE.

This season that I’ve called unknown, He renames it Surrender. Because he is NOW HERE. 

Because where I saw waiting, he sees preparing. Where I saw longing, he sees drawing near. Where I saw nothing, he sees surrender.

He sees me, this heart and this life wanting nothing more than him and his will. 

A hint of who you might be

Lately, my minds been whirling with new heart discoveries, a shift in my thinking and focus and the realities of feeling a new season of life approaching.

Truth be told, Dave and I have been sensing this change for a bit now- the soft, steady push into a new and unknown stage of life. We feel as if we’ve left the young adult stage and suddenly entered adult-ville. And the reality of the unknown is, it can be scary.

What do I know of Holy

No longer do your decisions affect only tomorrow or the next year. But in their place are ramifications on your future and the future of your one- day children. The decisions we make today, have the potential to guide and shape the course of our lives in very distinct ways.

While in the midst of my busiest season of work, we’ve been given opportunity after opportunity to put our faith to action and lean on God, with full force and might. Resisting temptation. Weeding out the “lesser good options” in an effort to stay focused on what matters most. And most unnerving [for me anyway] is multiple new opportunities – big choices that effect our home life and our professional lives, for potentially the next 10-20 years.

The reality is i’m scared and anxious. We and I alone, have made choices in the past that were not God’s will and without fail, God revealed each time, we’d taken paths not meant for us. We’d gone into territory and ventures, he had not anointed us for. We’ve learnt our lesson and vowed to do everything we can, in trust, prayer and faith, to move only where we feel God is calling us. But here’s the thing… it requires  trust, patience and faith- fulling leaning on God and not our own abilities, foresight and judgement.

God has made is vastly clear,  this year in particular, that even when I think I “get it”, and see what he’s doing, I’m always slightly off course and never see the picture crystal clear. Why? Because his plans are always SO MUCH better than I could ever conjure up on my own- they’re more joyful than I can usually anticipate- and in reality, they most times cause me anxiety as I anticpate all “I need to do” and “is expected of me.”  **Yes. I’m laughing with you at my ridiculous “I got this God” ways!!

See my problem.. I’m still learning to let go.

But the beauty in that reality is that with each finger I lift, and slowly release the grip of my control, I see God more clearly. His glory shines brighter and His power magnifies.

Yesterday, the words of a song I’ve listened to a million times, pierced my heart as if I heard them for the very first time…

I made You promises a thousand times
I tried to hear from Heaven, But I talked the whole time
I think I made You too small. I never feared You at all!
If You touched my face would I know You? Looked into my eyes could I behold You?

I guess I thought that I had figured You out
I knew all the stories and I learned to talk about How You were mighty to save
Those were only empty words on a page

Then I caught a glimpse of who You might be
The slightest hint of You brought me down to my knees

-Addison Road | What do I know of Holy

And before I knew it, I was drowning in tears of repentance for my self-reliance, yet again. For putting him in a Box and thinking his ways were not mysterious. For thinking my relationship was alright when half the time I talk WAY TOO much and then run off to “do another thing or make a decision!” I must be getting close to the “end of myself,” no?!

I have far from discovered what it truly means to fear you, my father. But I will not focus on where I need to go, but rejoice in how far I’ve come, because of you and your patient refining.  You will surely complete the work you have started, in me….


PS: To remind  us how good, merciful and trustworthy our God is, Dave and I started a thanksgiving cup.  Each time God answers our prayers, whether it’s little or big, we write it down and full the cup. In times of doubt, uncertainty and overwhelm, we can come back and see just how much God loves us and cares around every little thing that concerns us! Nothing is too big or too small to bring to God.

“You prepare a feast for me in the presence of my enemies. You honor me by anointing my head with oil. My cup overflows with blessings. ” Psalm 23:5

His ways are Higher

I’m been struggling to know what season of life I’m in right now; so desperately, that I half knowingly over analyze every “sign,” encounter and days happening, in an attempt to understand just what Gods doing right now and what he’s preparing me for.

My intentions are good. Honestly.  But my instinctive, “Give me the steps and I’ll master it yesterday!” is a gene that both blesses and curses me.

I want nothing more than to be in Gods will and do everything within my ability, or that which he asks of me, to prepare myself to walk in it. My earnest desire and hunger to hear from God and know him more intimately is a good thing, but I have to remember that it’s not in what I can do, but in what has already been done for me…

“Now God has us where he wants us, with all the time in this world and the next to shower grace and kindness upon us in Christ Jesus. Saving is all his idea, and all his work. All we do is trust him enough to let him do it. It’s God’s gift from start to finish! We don’t play the major role. If we did, we’d probably go around bragging that we’d done the whole thing! No, we neither make nor save ourselves. God does both the making and saving. He creates each of us by Christ Jesus to join him in the work he does, the good work he has gotten ready for us to do, work we had better be doing.” ~ Ephesians 2:8 MSG

In trying to make sense of it all,  [ie: attempting to feel somewhat in control of something I have absolutely none over, while simultaneously learning to give God the reign of my life and love it… what an oxymoron that is!] I’ve done nothing but frustrate myself!  Because the fact of the matter is, I’ll never fully understand God’s ways and he never promised to lay out the road map in full.

“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the LORD. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways.” ~Isaiah 55:8-9


Today, after seeing my pointless frustration, God showed his mercy and kindness. He revealed a glimpse of where I am and where he’s taking me, through the life of King Solomon. I can relate so passionately to his personal lament and reflections on his life…

“I said to myself, “Come on, let’s try pleasure. Let’s look for the ‘good things’ in life.” But I found that this, too, was meaningless…I decided to cheer myself with wine. And while still seeking wisdom, I clutched at foolishness. In this way, I tried to experience the only happiness most people find during their brief life in this world. I also tried to find meaning by building huge homes for myself and by planting beautiful vineyards.  I made gardens and parks, filling them with all kinds of fruit trees.  I built reservoirs to collect the water to irrigate my many flourishing groves.  I bought slaves, both men and women, and others were born into my household. I also owned large herds and flocks, more than any of the kings who had lived in Jerusalem before me.  I collected great sums of silver and gold, the treasure of many kings and provinces. I hired wonderful singers, both men and women, and had many beautiful concubines. I had everything a man could desire!.. Anything I wanted, I would take. I denied myself no pleasure. I even found great pleasure in hard work, a reward for all my labors. But as I looked at everything I had worked so hard to accomplish, it was all so meaningless—like chasing the wind. There was nothing really worthwhile anywhere.” Ecclesiastes 2:1-11

Oh, Lord, this is me! This is the path I walked down for years, my very story and where you’ve brought me to this very day. From a young age, I witnessed the ups and downs of entrepreneurial life, living with my self- employed parents. While it’s rewards were joyful at times, they saw more hours of “busy” and “I can’t, I have to work,” that I care to remember. So I vowed to never go there, running far the other direction. I’d still make something of myself, but with personal pleasure as my mantra.  But still it left me empty. No Party, shopping, drink or “friend” fulfilled me. There had to be more…  So in vain I turned a corner, a new leaf of wisdom, I believed. There had to be more…So, I decided to conquer the world.  I wanted money, influence, status and possessions. I chased accomplishments after accomplishment, always raising the bar and never satisfied. Around the next bend I’d find my identity, my worth and life’s true meaning. But still it left me empty, even more so this time round. For as much as I thoroughly love my work and can say every experience has helped shaped the person I am today, my pursuit was for something unattainable and ultimately meaningless in the grand scheme of things. Perfectionism, my friend is impossible. And everything we have, but love, will be left behind.

I knew in my heart, at the closing of 2012, I was at the end of me. It was time to fully surrender. To move beyond being a baby Christian, asking God what he could do for me, to a mature Christian, asking God what I could do for him! 2013 was my year to put my money where my mouth was, and allow God more than just my good intentions, but  all of me- my heart, my will and my desires…

While he may not have revealed the entire blue print to my future, I can rest in confidence that his plan is at work in me. I have assurance I’m walking down the right path and so long as I keep my eyes cast upon him, he will make straight my path!

“The Lord makes firm the steps of the one who delights in him; though he may stumble, he will not fall, for the Lord upholds him with his hand.” ~ Psalm 37: 23-24

 “So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way.” ~ James 1:4

More concerned

Though uncomfortable at times and unfamiliar, [the old me thrived on busy, bigger, and self-sufficiency] this season in my life is essential and God will surely use it to refine my heart and produce in me a steadfast focus on him and his good, perfect and pleasing will.

“There’s an opportune time to do things, a right time for everything on the earth:

A right time for birth and another for death,
A right time to plant and another to reap,
A right time to kill and another to heal,
A right time to destroy and another to construct,
A right time to cry and another to laugh,
A right time to lament and another to cheer,
A right time to make love and another to abstain,
A right time to embrace and another to part,
A right time to search and another to count your losses,
A right time to hold on and another to let go,
A right time to rip out and another to mend,
A right time to shut up and another to speak up,
A right time to love and another to hate,
A right time to wage war and another to make peace” ~ Ecclesiastes 3 MSG

This is my time to…

    • die …. to my fleshly desires
    • tear down… the chains, walls and bondage that I’ve allowed to build up and keep me from all God has planned for me
    • weep… for the pain my sin has cause and see it’s brutality in the light of Christ
    • embrace.. . my weaknesses and my story, seeing it beautiful and useable for good by God
    • shut up … listen more than I speak, to Gods promptings and the council of others who have stayed the course of the path I’m travelling
    • search… for God with my whole heart earnestly and with persistence, like never before

But most importantly, this is my time to plant…. seeds of truth, love and light into my mind and heart, so that God’s promises and word can embed and begin to grow and expand into an unshakable, deep rooted system of nourishment and eternal life. 

Patience, dear Kailey. In due time, his time, you will reap a plentiful harvest, abundant and free flowing.

“And be not conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what is good and acceptable- the perfect will of God.” ~ Romans 12:2