This morning someone said to me ,” the more we are hidden on earth, the more we are revealed in heaven “. This is an anthem today. I am building a fortress around me out of scripture. I am laying down and covering myself with a blanket of promises, old and new. But most of all , I am believing that the ugly, the dark , the hidden places are making me known to heaven, those hurt and broken places are making me familiar with my Father. Inside and out he knows me , he knows you . So for now , you and I can keep hiding out, crying in our secret places , and all the while … our hiding is leading the son of man, the son of God right to us . We are an incorruptible seed planted by the one who paid for everything we have ever wanted to hide . We are the innocent ones …. revealed over and over again . Take heart and have courage . We are not alone .
You don’t know fire , until you are in the fire. You can’t describe it, or explain it. All you can do is pray. Pray that this is not the end , pray that a flood is coming. A flood of hope, a flood of relief, a flood of goodness and grace . A flood of love big enough to drown the fire and stop the burning . That’s the gospel, that’s the scarlet cord, that is where our help comes from .
I wrote this psalm at a time of such struggle, and I still love it today.
How far away will you let me go ?
How afraid will you let me be ?
Fear is my enemy, he is chasing me
He calls out to me in the day, wrestles me in the night
Lord please hold me, keep me in your sight.
My eyes search you out, your voice, your wisdom, your light.
You push back the heavens until I am in clear view
You answer cry, give me all of you.
You never looked away, even in the darkest day
my spirit shines and sings praises to your name
I will dance, I will dance, I will dance , I will dance
I will give hope a chance.
Thanksgiving. My favorite holiday . Except thanksgiving is not a holiday at all, its a place.
Thanksgiving is a city that we build with words, and thoughts, and feelings of grattitude too big to be contained. Therefore….the gates are open.
My word for 2016 is BEAUTY. I’m more than halfway through the year , and to be honest I’m feeling guilty that I haven’t spent more time studying the word. That’s right, I was sitting right here thinking about it and feeling bad when…. You guessed it… Lightbulb moment. I’ve been LIVING my word out right, and out loud . I started the year off by affiliating myself with BeautyCounter, a non-toxic skincare company, and in May I moved into my beautiful dream home. The word Queen Esther has been spoken over me twice now …. It’s big and scary and a little overwhelming. She was beautiful , and pure of heart , and powerful. She was as brave as any man. Damn it, she was a queen! Esther’s in today’s world will be feminine and proud of it . We will come to the understanding and ownership of the theme of beauty in our lives . No matter our size, or the number of friends we have … The beauty that was created for Eve and passed down to you and I … remains, and it is powerful. It’s powerful in the home , and it’s powerful in the workplace , it’s powerful in our highschools and youth groups , it’s powerful even in our doubt.
About 4 weeks ago I started watching YouTube videos ,mostly about beauty. I searched to find women my age , women who are embracing their differences , sharing their experiences and building tribes . ( Ms gold girl is my favorite )Yes, it’s about makeup, and so much more. I started to feel like I was wasting my time, but the Lord , ever patient , reminded me of my word . Beauty. I’m still learning . I’m listening . It’s ok to love beauty, we were created for it. So take your place , you standing at the oven , wearing pjs , and you the one who has gained a few pounds , take your place even though you are not 24…. Take your place . The place created for you by the Lord of all creation . You are beautiful . Inside and out. And here is a tribute to some of the most beautiful , powerful women I know .
What a season of change I am in ! Let’s catch up…Man child has gone to college, he doesn’t live with me anymore. This has been more brutiful (beautiful/brutal)than I had imagined. And big blue eyed girl is driving… which leads me to lion boy who is growing at warp speed, he is in high school. A big public high school . And he is winning ! Killing it. My heart almost stopped the week that all these changes took place . My two littles ( I use that term loosely) drove away together and I fell onto my bed and thanked the lord for the pain in my heart. As I’ve learned , HE always responds to grattitude. He was gracious enough to tell me something . And I wanted to share it with you there in the grocery store, you there letting go of your college student, or kindergartner , you wondering what in the world you are supposed to do now . The lord whispered this …. MY LOVE overshadows all of it. Your pain, your tears of joy, your shopping to fill up that spot, your wandering heart, your ugly and your beautiful…all of your comings and your goings. MY LOVE casts a shadow so GIANT that your whole life is covered.
And that was it , simple and stunning . I am in a season that is NOT a mid life crisis, it’s mid lifeAWARENESS. I am resting, and laughing. I am loving and letting myself be loved … Extravagantly. Amazed by the coolness of the shadow the Lord’s love has cast on me .
Sometimes it doesn’t look like I want it to. This life, this love, this walk. I’ve always known what I wanted , I’ve wanted to be a worship mother, to lead a family, not a congregation . And it’s been hard . The seeds I plant , and the songs I write seemingly , go unnoticed . It takes time and perseverance and rain . Boy, does it take rain . The melody of my life has been a sacrifice to the one who made me and to the one who put this desire in my heart . I’ve poured time and energy into my family and I’ve spent nights asking for the Lords hand to guide me . I’ve been disappointed and emptied out . Only to find HIM there in that desolate place . Only to have him fill me up again and again .
As women we are the gatekeepers for a great number of things . This week I felt like a light came on for me in one of these areas. I decided to educate myself about the products that I allow on , and in my body. I am a self diagnosed product junkie, hell bent on aging as best I can . How could I have neglected to find out the real cost of some the items that I rely on daily ? Not the expense, but the cost. The cost to my hormones , my thyroid …. My health. Products with fragrance are hormone disrupters. I don’t know about you , but my hormones don’t need any help in being unpredictable , and all over the board . This goes for my teenage daughter too. It’s my job to decide what comes into my home . Laundry detergent, cleaners, body lotion,deodorant , soap … These are all things that I can control .
So why wouldn’t I ? I am excited about this , it makes me feel like I’m doing my job ! I also love the idea of passing the information on to others . You know better, and then you do better . I’m aligning myself with a company on a mission . Beauty Counter . I’m so grateful for their mission . Better beauty .
Or something like that. Things are shifting . One of my sons in particular makes fun of me for getting so excited and intense over New Years . I ask the Lord for a word for my year, and then I read ,and study ,and pray and often tell long, drawn out stories at the dinner table about what I am seeing and learning through that word .
This year, maybe more than any previous… I feel a real shift. It’s a shift in my way of thinking , a breaking down to get to breakthrough . I’ve had plenty of breakdowns , but the shift is causing me to be able to see the breakthrough !
Relationships are changing , friendships are changing . I feel like I am looking through a different lens . Some of it is hard , and it will take some getting used to and some grace . I am excited about the newness . I am eagerly anticipating this year and all of its bittersweets. Adam will graduate , and Belle will be sweet 16. I am claiming that , SWEET 16 . Hahaha !
I can either white knuckle it with them , or I can hold on loosely, trusting that the same FATHER that held me ALL the days of my life , is holding them too.
I’m not checking out. It’s just time for a shift change .
when I caught fire
and the flames burned , out of control and wild
and then slowly ,smoldering into a pile of ashes before you
you breathed on me …and I was beautiful.