Friday, November 30, 2012

Where I Belong?

Moment of honesty...I really can't stand this song.'s true.

"Take this world and give me Jesus. This is not where I belong."

I understand it in the sense of those times when we are overwhelmed with the mess around us...the pain, the suffering, the selfishness. Ick. Ick. Ick. So, those moments when we can remind ourselves that this life isn't "it"...that there's more to come...can be peace-giving.


And I mean a huge "BUT"...

There are many who actually abuse the sense of "later". They actually mean "take this world and shove it!" and arrogantly excuse themselves from investing in "today". They focus so much on "then" that they are ineffectual in bringing the kingdom "now". A lens set on, comfort, aimed at guarding their own yard until death or the second coming.

It's just plain not what we were made for. Jesus' life and mission here serve as a huge challenge to dive into the present and share the amazing "who" of who you are...the man or woman God made you to be!! You DO belong here! There's a message written on your heart that is a gift to us in this age AND the rest of what eternity encompasses.

So...for people who need a song like this to give themselves peace in the midst of the stresses of a broken world, by all means...peace to you! But, don't stop there!!!! Let it invigorate you...let it drive you to the good Father of the present...the Great "I Am"...and then get back to LIVING.

Don't "shove it"...bring it.

Sigh...rant done. ;)

True Colors

Our Purified Heart

Our Purified Heart [excerpt from 'Beautiful Outlaw, 220. 221]

 When we recover the humanity of Jesus, it helps us find him in the messy parts of our own humanity, of humanity at large. We discover for ourselves the vast richness and beauty of his heart. If his heart is such, in whose image we are made and are being remade, might our own hearts one day be so rich?

 The religious fog has many, many Christians trapped in the Old Testament view of their hearts—deceitful and wicked. They have been blinded to the New Testament teaching that God gives us a new heart: “The seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart,” and “He purified their hearts by faith” (Luke 8:15; Acts 15:9). That’ll rock your world.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

True Friends...

...will trim your neck hair or chin hairs but draw boundaries with the legs.

Haha! It was one of those weird days at work. ;)

The Rising Sun

"And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High; for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him, to give his people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins, because of the tender mercy of our God, by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace.”

Luke 1:76-79 [spoken to John the Baptist about himself and the Christ he would precede]

I was so excited to hear about the phrase that refers to Jesus as the "rising sun". The sunrise. The dayspring. Oh my...He is the breaking of dawn...

The sunrise has been a magical thing for me since I can remember. All of the colors. The steady rising. The retreat of night. Every now and then, I drive up to Lake Superior to watch it rise "out of the lake". I try to find a place free of the possibility of shadows so I can be totally consumed by the rays of the new day. 

It's a phenomenal experience every time...

To think of Jesus in this way is absolutely a blessing. Oh's sweet to my soul!!

He's my sunrise too. My release into the new day...a new life. Things look so beautiful...because of Him. Shadows flee.

Wow. What an awesome gift in this season. The Christmas child who was...and is...the rising sun.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Such is MY Life

Sometimes I have to laugh at the pure ridiculousness of things. Weird stuff happens to me, people. Seriously weird!!! So, I have a week to get to the place of "gracious" and "appropriate"...or at least the appearance of such. ;)

But for's what I really think...HAHA!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

The "No Gossip" Girls!

Oh how valuable those friendships are...the ones free of gossip. I'll tell ya...knowing I'm sharing my thoughts and feelings with someone who will NOT pass them on...well, it's pure gold for this girl. 

It's been a yucky run of finding myself hearing about things I've shared in confidence with others...from entirely different sources. Not pleasant...not when you value your privacy...and appreciate the honor and respect of confidentiality.

How the gossipy types still get away with it? Other than people who refer to them as individuals you shouldn't tell your heart's secrets to...and now I know. Sigh. 

Blah, blah...

TODAY!!! I had one of the best, "wide open spaces" conversations. Totally a two-way respect. And I walked away feeling peaceful, rest. 

They exist, people! The "No Gossip" Girls! :)

Science vs. Scientism

I'm sure this is controversial, but I love the questions it raises. Rescuing science from scientism! C.S. Lewis had some thoughts on the subject.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Lukewarm and Loving It

Lukewarm and Loving It - A great challenge from Francis Chan

The Super Power's been a season of "walking through the dark valley" for all sorts of reasons, and I know it has been for others too. Well, it's had my heart doing some pondering...a lot of realizations. Of course, alongside all of that, it's the Thanksgiving holiday. The challenge to be grateful in all things has been on the forefront.

You know what I've been realizing?

Gratitude is a super power.

It's true. 

It's a major key to focusing our eyes...surrendering our we can see things the way God is seeing them. 

“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow.”  ― Melody Beattie

For those who want to make a difference in this world in all circumstances...who want to know hope, peace and joy and freely give those things from a full's a necessary discipline and delight. What an asset!

Another infusion that comes from choosing gratitude?


"He inhabits the praises of His people."

Gratitude helps us sense the intimate presence of the Father. In gratitude we see that we are not alone...that, in fact, He is so very near. hope for us all this Thanksgiving is that we would be able to be grateful from the heart...and see the super powers unleashed in our lives. :)

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

We Love Each Other?

My parents and I were responsible for bringing treats for the Gathering Grounds time after the church service. It's a time for food and fellowship before we break into our Growth Groups. Mom and I decided to get a cake made at Wal-Mart (super yum sheet cakes) and have it decorated with something nice. (Pretty sugar...yep. Hehe.) What'd I pick???...for lack of any special occasion, I just had them write "We Love You!" with some hearts and such.

So...enter the moment of "pause"...

When I went to pick it up on Sunday morning, the lady at the checkout asked what the cake was for. I replied that it was just for the snack time at church. She stopped short and gave me this really puzzled look.

"Wait. You love each other at your church?"

She went on to clarify that she wasn't used to "church" people expressing love for people in general, let alone each other.


Umm...hey, churchy people of America! Something's wrong with that picture!!

"And they'll know we are Christians by our love..." Let's make the statement TRUE!!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Fictitious Real

Oh my...I just have to laugh at myself sometimes. I have this weird "issue" with getting so drawn into stories that the fictitious characters actually become real people in my mind. Real enough that I'll be extra concerned  for their happiness, safety, etc...even after the story is done.

Sigh. I'm so weird. ;)

It happened again tonight. I sat in a movie and found myself enormously concerned and then freakishly relieved for the characters in the story. The made-up story!!!! they were people I've been friends with for years!! And now...home and tucked in for the night...I'm actually wondering if they are really doing ok...

Hoping so... Haha!!

Yep...that's life in this head. ;)


I'm starting to wonder if it's ok to tell the self-proclaimed "experts" know, the people, who for all their facts but mostly their pride, hurl out "expert" opinions (a.k.a. snap judgments, criticism) like they are God's gift to the world. Lord!!!...assuming we all actually want to know their limited, typically negative and slanted opinions!!!

Oh my goodness....SERIOUSLY!!

They tell you their judgments on everything...EVERYTHING...oh heck, even on yourself!!

Pretty ballsy.

Pretty rude.

Pretty stupid.

I actually got the giggles tonight thinking about giving myself permission to go all "expert" right back on their arses. Wouldn't that be a shocker!?!? HAHA!

Oh dear...but for some reason it actually seems INAPPROPRIATE (because of love, grace, skills!!!) to inform them that they 1) make for insanely qualified Pharisees...legalistic, white-washed on the fringes rather than getting in there and serving, 2) likely have an undiagnosed depression issue with serious need for meds, or 3) are revealing with their massive over-compensation that they are actually pretty insecure, 4)...and on and on... cool to return the favor. Deeeeeep breaths....

So...I wait...and I pray...and I remind myself to NOT be the same way.

I don't want to be known for sucking the hope out of the room...constantly.



Oh my goodness...I love P!nk.

Monday, November 19, 2012


It strikes me how much of a gate pride is to things we'd never have dreamed in the beginning...sorrow, destruction, pain, isolation. 

‎"Pride makes us artificial, and humility makes us real." -Merton

“As long as you are proud you cannot know God. A proud man is always looking down on thing and people: and, of course, as long as you are looking down you cannot see something that is above you.” 
― C.S. LewisMere Christianity

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Opportunities in Grief

Based solely on my own grief of late...

It strikes me that both the Father and the Enemy see great opportunity as we enter seasons of grief.

For the Father...opportunities for greater intimacy with Him, greater depth, lessons, humility, community...healing.

For the Enemy...opportunities for the prisons of bitterness, agreements with his lies, entrance into a smaller, reactive life...further destruction.

It's not that we shouldn't grieve...God knows that's an opportunity for the Enemy! No, we SHOULD grieve...grieve honestly...grieve humbly...grieve well. All of this WITH the active intention of partnership with the right team. Team Jesus. :)

Hebrews 4:14-16

14 Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. 15 For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet was without sin. 16 Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Looking for the Sunrise

One of the things I'm sad about in all this [see posts below] is a loneliness.

While I'm definitely a Jesus-girl, I don't seem to fit in the boxes that some Christians seem to need. I don't always understand the modernists and Evangelicals...seems like too much reliance on "truths" at the expense of real relationship with the "truth-giver", seems like too much emphasis on "later" that "today" is robbed of its beauty and potential. Sigh. 

I'm a mystic. I'm God's daughter in this "now" who is messily learning to live humbly in and from the right kingdom. I'm committed to becoming the "me" that He wrote on my heart and living the destiny He and I were meant to live together. I want to chase Him in the sunrise and find wonders all around. Express the Eden in my heart.

I'm experiencing Him HERE...and I'm misunderstood all the time. :( friend who is struggling right now was my free space to "be". Even if he didn't always understand, I had great permission to explore and discover. So much grace from one person. I grew and deepened because of it...and was able to speak more and more out of it. I'm sure that space is still there, but the reality of the situation means things have to change for a while. 

I guess that makes me sad...because heart-friends are hard to find. 

My Dad reminded me that we all hold a piece of this thing called "faith", and that each of us then carries some of that loneliness. Yep, that rings true. So, it's a good reminder to honor that in everyone and see the common ground that can exist because of it. true Dad-fashion...I am reminded that being "alone" in actuality ISN'T true. Varying perspectives are pieces of the beautiful puzzle. It would be so wrong and isolating to continue to think otherwise. Yep...done.

And then there's God...what He's seeing and saying...that regardless of the situation, it's time...and it's not be the "kid" anymore. It's time to be a "big girl" and walk in confidence in Jesus and HIS wide open spaces of grace...and maybe start being that free space for others...walk alongside others. 

So...being a bit sad...but looking for the sunrise. His promises never end. :)

Wednesday, November 14, 2012


When Sin Comes At Ya

Note: These are just some of my thinkings prompted by a situation at church. Whether allegations are true or not (praying things will become clear with time), it is a good reminder to stop and consider our reactions/responses any time we encounter sin...other's...our own...

Note #2: Grief is a real and necessary process. I believe wholeheartedly in embracing the journey to healing when hurt by another. Getting stuck isn't a good idea. Living in reaction (see previous post) isn't God's ideal. Being free to be real, though...wonderfully good. So, for those reading this that are grieving, keep on keeping on! I pray you will find God's "with" presence and find yourself longing to gaze where He is gazing.


First of all, let me say a HUGE "Thank You" to the majority of brothers and sisters in Christ from area churches who have overwhelmed us with support. Whether true or not, allegations alone can really rock a community, and sadly, the church at large doesn't always have a reputation for love and grace. Recent experience has shown me, though, that the remnant is in full force. Your kindness, encouragement to keep going strong, and space to face this free of judgment are a BLESSING!! In Christ, no one is alone. What a beautiful response!!

Every now and then, though, I run into people...only a handful...who aren't very good at being brothers and sisters in Christ. The anger of grief is one thing (and totally acceptable and understandable), but with only a few words some others reveal their pride, legalism, divisiveness... I feel so, so badly for people like that. Imagine how they view themselves in the face of their own sin...horrifying. And how inhibited others are to be authentic in struggle when in their very tragic. Sadly, it's usually heartbreaking wounding in their own life (that and/or an enormous pride) that creates the Pharisaical approach. A sad facade...unpleasant reaction.

What I'm most concerned about is how grief over the possibility of sin in another can cause people to question their own freedom or healing. They can let their mind spin enough to rob them of their new life. Steps backwards in their "becoming". You know what?'s not a place we have to linger in for very long. While no one is promised immunity, we can choose the way of humility and continue in our journey. We can pause and take account of how our hearts are doing when it comes to sin and enter into repentance for areas found wanting. Maintaining relationships of accountability helps in preserving humility. That person who will help you see when you are playing with fire. And best of all...we don't have to journey alone. Embrace fellowship with the body!! Community inspires the release of true identity and destiny. Friends "becoming" together.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Peace, Be Still

Now, this is a face I could stare at forever. The artist (see link below) is offering her rendition of Jesus calming the storm. She notes that His eyes are filled with peace. That's where I'll gaze. :)

Peace, Be Still

Yum On!

...and now for Ben & Jerry's...yep, strawberry cheesecake ice cream. Don't even think about taking that away from this girl. ;)

"With" in the Valley

"God With Us" in the valley.

Psalm 23

The Lord is my shepherd. I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside quiet waters.
He restores my soul.
Even though I walk through the darkest valley,
I will fear no evil for you are with me.
Your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil. My cup overflows.
Surely goodness and mercy will follow me
all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the
house of the Lord forever.

Life has its moments, people. Those ones where everything makes no sense. What's going on? What's true, what's not? What is sure is that "God With Us" is real. He goes through the darkest things with us...His here-and-now presence, His authority, His guidance. So we keep our eyes fixed on Him...we trust His ability to shine light where it needs to be shone, to bring truth and freedom...and we follow HIS path as walk through. His promises are true today just like they were on the mountaintop. So...don't get distracted by all of satan's garbage. Fix your eyes on Jesus...and DON'T LOOK AWAY!

Living in Response

Reaction versus Response. 

Reaction keeps a person a prisoner to their pain with bars of resentment, bitterness, legalism... Response is different. It allows a person to grieve but then helps them to unhook from their wound so that they don't have to live in reaction. Response allows for grief, valuable lessons and continuation in freedom. Better equipped!! I choose response. Jesus is real and wonderful that way. :)

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Monday, November 5, 2012

Keep On Keeping On

In Jesus' Name, We Press On.

When it's time to go through the darkest valley, we lock our eyes on Jesus and follow Him. We face what needs to be faced. We grieve what needs to be grieved. AND...we trust that His promises are no less true in this moment than they were on the mountaintop.

"He (or she) who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty." Psalm 91:1


Sunday, November 4, 2012

The Single Problem

Sometimes I wish I could explain to the "church" [universal] how much they don't understand and thus serve the single crowd that occupies seats in congregations. Marriage/family is treated as the "yes, you have arrived" level of life. Beyond a beautiful arrangement experienced by some, it has become an idol. Try even challenging it a bit (especially in this political season), and you'll get your hand slapped for messing with the cookie jar.

Single people in this system are the wallflowers...pitied by some for "missing out", feared by others for choosing something different than the "married way". I've actually had people spiritualize lack of marital bliss by explaining (in true formula-fashion) "if you'd just let go of wanting to get married, God will give you your significant other"....because being single, obviously, we are doing something wrong to create the lack. Ironic "idol" psychology. Sigh. I've had others pull away from me a bit, acknowledging subtly that I'm their worst nightmare for their daughters because instead of a Mr. Right (at the moment) I have...dare I say...personal goals and dreams. Shriek.

Women's ministries are set up to support motherhood and the wife-life. They celebrate weddings and births. That's about it, though, as if these are the only things to mentor and celebrate in women's lives. Now, don't freak out...these are valid and wonderful aspects of womanhood...but when did these become IT???

It makes me crazy.

To elevate marriage to such a state puts people in boxes. Definitions that keep us from true identity. We are NOT our roles, relationships and responsibilities. We are what we BRING to our roles, relationships and responsibilities...WHATEVER THAT LOOKS LIKE. That, my friends, puts ALL of us on the same playing field.

Besides...aren't we FIRST God's child and the bride of Christ?...seems like more of a place to start defining "quality of life"...but I digress. ;)



Oh wow! I'm going to see this!!!


Be Thou My Vision

Beautiful "With"

I felt like pausing from the busyness of life to bask in something truly amazing. It's really a whole, new world for this girl. A life of "with". Intimacy with the Trinity is a beautiful that unleashes identity and destiny. The reality of Him is sometimes the thickest thing I feel. It certainly fuels a longing for I'll wait with expectation. :)

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Fortune Days

I'm weirdly productive when this song come on my Pandora. It's my techno-side. ;)