Monday, October 31, 2011

With great thanks...

When I feel paralyzed by my own failings...
When I try to catch my breath and feel my heart seemingly beating out of my chest...
When fear claws at my mind with lies of unworthiness...

I fight with gratitude and praise to the One whose perfect love casts out all fear, to the One whose light of truth shines on the lies, to the One who whispers that His power is made perfect in my weakness.

Overflowing with thanksgiving here today as we celebrate Reformation and remember the courage and faith of Martin Luther. "My conscience is captive to the word of God..."

Just a few of those things for which I can shout thanksgiving to the God who loves us all
...the way little one wakes with sleepy eyes and says "Mommy" with trusting love in His voice
...words of pure kindness from a new but oh so true friend and women of courage, past and present, whose love for Christ teaches and humbles
...God's always faithful provision
...strong words of love spoken by the love of my life
...campfires and s'mores
...sweet family time for cousins to play
...the Scriptures, readily available in print, audio, or electronic form, in a language I can understand

Loving and Learning,

Thursday, October 20, 2011

A Prayer and A Song

Dear God,

Thank you. Thank you for breath and life, for hope and grace, for love more full and sacrifice more deep than I can ever comprehend. You reign, so I can rest. You give, so I can exist. You shine, and the darkness flees. You forgive, and I am made whole. You sing over me, and the noise of chaos is silenced.

Pain is real. Suffering surrounds. Despair destroys. There are questions to which I can find no answer and fear that seeks to choke out the beauty you give as weeds choke the plants in a garden. But when I look to you and seek your face, I see your glory and know that my only Hope is in you.

Give me grace to be thankful for each path you take me down, no matter the cost or the pain. Give me voice to speak and sing and shout your praise in every circumstance and to speak your truth to everyone who needs to hear. Give me vision to see where you are leading and give me courage to live with abandon and follow you no matter what.  Give me opportunity to show your heart, to share your love, to give as you have given.

You alone are worthy. You do not change. You Are.
I love you, Lord. Amen.

Day after Day (Kristian Stanfill)
"Men will try to rule the world You made
But we know power is Yours alone to give and take
A day will come when every knee will bow
And every tongue confess that You are Lord both now and forever

Day after day our God is reigning
He's never shaken
My hope is in the Lord
Time after time our God is faithful
Trustworthy Savior
My hope is in the Lord

The fear of man and what they plan will fade
When we know you alone are God of everyday
Like the flowers man will rise and fall
But you are everlasting, never-ending, God eternal

Let the songs of adoration rise
Our God is reigning up on high
He's worthy to receive the praise and the glory"

Loving and Learning,

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Possessions, Poverty, and My Own Sin

I have to say thanks to Amy at "Thoughts from an Overthinker" for linking to the below post, thus allowing me to discover it. It is about money and truth and the church and poverty and the Gospel--topics that are much more complex than I can began to address or summarize.
My own sin in this area is forgetting and closing my eyes...I don't want to forget what I have seen of suffering and poverty. I don't want to stop asking the hard questions of myself and asking God to open my eyes, my heart, my much is enough to keep and how much to give away? God didn't give me what I have so that I can hoard it for myself and those few people in my family. He gave it to me as a means to love others, show His love, give as He has given to me, and live the Gospel (not just preach it). Suffering is real, and as a child of God, I am supposed to use whatever He chooses to give me to give to and love on others. I want to love God and desire Him, not the stuff He gives.
Read it. I think you will be glad you did.

Loving and Learning,

Friday, October 14, 2011


I usually revel in the fall - enjoying the falling leaves, the crispness of the air, and the color of a fall blue sky (something different about its shade from the sky of summer). This season always reminds me that harvest is a blessing, that the dying must happen for new life to burst forth in spring, that thanksgiving is something we get to live every day of every season.

This fall has so far been a season of hardship and uncertainty for our family--filled with change and risk that have brought little peace or confidence in our decisions. I have felt completely attacked on every front as a mom, wife, friend, and child of God. And it has taken so much of my energy to listen for God's voice in the midst of the lies that the deceiver throws my way. There are so many questions that I do not have answers for, but I am thankful that I don't have to have those answers. God has them, He is good, He loves us, and He is Sovereign. I do not say those words lightly or flippantly, and am fully aware that the really hard circumstances with which we are dealing may be God's exact plan for our family. He is teaching me that what I want and need are oftentimes so far from one another, and I know from His word that Him making me like Jesus is far more important than giving me temporary happiness. HE is an awesome and amazing God whose grace I experience every day, but my thoughts are not His thoughts and my ways are not His ways (see Isaiah 55:9). I just pray for His grace that I may accept with gratitude whatever He gives me and walk by faith even when the road is dark and I cannot see the way.

This season has also been marked by reminders of God's goodness--encouraging words, faithful prayers, and kind gestures by sweet friends and sisters in Christ; a realization of how God has strengthened our family and marriage as we face these changes united in purpose and love to walk by faith; and the support and love of our extended families. God has also shown me some amazing scriptures and reminded me of some old hymns that are His gifts to me when I am having a particularly tough day. So, I will close this post with one of the passages and one of the hymns that have encouraged me through this season. I pray that your current season whether it be one of joy or sorrow, comfort or hardship, doubt or certainty, will be filled with His presence and peace. His grace is sufficient.

Psalm 40 has been a great comfort and prayer for me in these days. I hope you will read the entire Psalm, but here are a couple of the verses to which I particularly relate.
"But may all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you; may those who long for your saving help always say, 'The LORD is great!' But as for me, I am poor and needy; may the Lord think of me. You are my help and my deliverer; you are my God, do not delay." v.16-17

I will arise and go to Jesus, He will embrace me in His arms. In the arms of my dear Savior, oh there are ten thousand charms.

Loving and Learning,

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Piper on God and Racial Unity

I have for the last several years been challenged and encouraged by reading and listening to John Piper's wisdom and sermons. His humble and passionate love for God, for people, and for God's word is apparent in what he does and says. Today, I just discovered this amazing documentary, Bloodlines, from Piper. Take 19 minutes to watch this. It is truth. It will be more than worth your time.

Bloodlines Documentary with John Piper from Crossway on Vimeo.

About Me

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I love Jesus Christ, am a seeker of beauty, and am a grateful child of God who would be lost and hopeless were it not for His grace. I am learning to walk in love, see interruptions as divine appointments, and value people and relationships above agendas and results. I pray my life is grace-filled, and brings joy and encouragement to everyone I know and meet. We are a family of 6, built by God through love, birth, and adoption, living in the beauty and the struggle that accompanies parenting kids from hard places. Got questions? Email me at

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