Friday, August 12, 2011

Remember the "K" is a G sound

I wanted to name this blog "It's been a while" but that reminded me of an awful song by Staind that is from who-knows-when middle school...but the point is, after 8 months I decided it was time again to blog:)

Tonight I'm thinking about some of the crazy places I've been in the last few years. The bayou of Louisiana, the end of the earth North Carolina, the sun-scorched land of Africa and the cool air in Colorado. I think of one phrase that my friends in Africa say multiple times a day "Nkulunkulu mule"(in-goo-loo-in-goo-loo moo-sh-lay) it means, God is good. I've newly appreciated Psalm 124 lately. It talks of deep trouble and fierce struggle and that if God had not been on the psalmist's side... well, it moves through what could have happened. It ends in praise and with two reminders(at least) for me these days.

Nkulunkulu mule and I am weak.

It is good to remember God's grand and masterful ways of saving us, what He has saved us from and where we are rescued out of. It is good to remember "If God had not been on my side." This is not only to remember the former, but to understand my frailty. My never-had-a-chance self. Because as a human, as someone living in the struggle of spirit and flesh, I don't have a chance. The majority of my days are spent knowing I am weak and acting as if I am invincible. But that doesn't generally end well. I am trusting God to remind me today that He is always on my side. He is for me, because He wants to be. Nkulunkulu mule, because that is who He is. Not because He does unreasonably good things for me (which He does) but because it is Him.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Take Notice

Stop. Look around. Take notice. What's going on around you? Who is close to you? What are you thinking about? One thing? 100 things? How was your morning? Who have you seen today? What's important to you today?

Today we sang "Beautiful" by Phil Wickham. The first three sections start with "I see you..." and end with "you're beautiful." I see you in the sunrise. I see you in the moonlit night. I see your bride come together. You're beautiful. It's about taking notice and acknowledging our source. What would happen if we were a people who took notice? Some of the best conversations happen when we notice. We see the funniest things when we notice. We feel important when we are noticed. It's loving in the moment and possibly one of the most powerful things you can do.

We see Paul (acts 17) taking notice to the people of athens and that is how he begins to share the gospel with a "deeply religious people."

Do you have a friend who just points things out all the time or remembers the little details you didn't even tell them? It's astonishing sometimes. What a gift!

What happens when we notice? We see beauty. We invest. We look beyond ourselves. We acknowledge who is in control and that it isn't about me.

What happens when we don't notice? We see ourselves. We become steeped in our circumstances. We lose a sense of hope. We don't serve others.

I'm not always great at taking notice. Sometimes I don't remember peoples names and I don't remember who had a test when and I get distracted by whatever I just came from or to where I am going...
My prayer lately has been to be a friend, daughter and sister who takes notice. I want the people around me to feel important and to know that when people walk by in their world and don't notice that someone does. It's about loving them.

My Savior noticed me. He noticed my sin problem and my family life and my wonderful friends and my surroundings. He doesn't just notice me...his thoughts about me outnumber the grains of sand. My Savior loves me. And He takes notice of you too. And his thoughts of you are more than the stars in the sky and He takes delight in you. I pray you believe that and that we together can take notice and be a picture of our Savior to a world distracted.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

The Hope of Glory

Today in church we talked about Heaven. We talked about where it is and a little of what it might be like but really we talked about how heaven and earth interact. What it came down to was that the overlap of heaven and earth is in us.

you. me. us.

Because of the Holy Spirit dwelling in us and our lives here on earth...the overlap is us. This does not come close to touching all the things we talked through today but what I'm going for here is the reflection. I began to pray through after the service was what it looks like to live the overlap. Where am I not doing that? What does it look like to do that? The only thing that came to mind was "To them God chose to make known how great among the Gentiles are the riches of the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory."(Colossians 1:27)

How beautiful!

Christ in you, the hope of glory!

Praise. We have the hope of glory because of His Spirit, because of the overlap.


Monday, August 30, 2010

What do we really do?

The moment high school graduation hits how many college hand books, this-is-what-it's-like conversations and t.v. shows do we see about the impending transition? maybe more than the number of mountains in Colorado. The funny thing is...the bigger transition comes after college graduation as the real world inches closer...and how many preparations do we have about that transition? close to none. So then we hang in the balance of "What do I do?" It's exciting and nerve racking and feels slow and horribly fast and overwhelming all at one time.

The transition from the school days to the real world is one everyone faces and no one talks about. Why? It's uncomfortable. It's uncomfortable to wait. I find myself in this particular waiting rhythm. I don't expect to exit it soon and therefore, I pray to find a way to embrace it. I wonder often what it looks like to serve and worship and embrace and be patient and be bold while I wait. I still don't have a clear picture...I do know it will require a sensitivity to redirection, interruption in "my plans" and through it I pray this is my confession and song of my heart:

Lyrics to While I'm Waiting :
I'm waiting
I'm waiting on You, Lord
And I am hopeful
I'm waiting on You, Lord
Though it is painful
But patiently, I will wait

I will move ahead, bold and confident
Taking every step in obedience
While I'm waiting
I will serve You
While I'm waiting
I will worship
While I'm waiting
I will not faint
I'll be running the race
Even while I wait

I'm waiting
I'm waiting on You, Lord
And I am peaceful
I'm waiting on You, Lord
Though it's not easy
But faithfully, I will wait
Yes, I will wait
I will serve You while I'm waiting
I will worship while I'm waiting
I will serve You while I'm waiting
I will worship while I'm waiting
I will serve you while I'm waiting
I will worship while I'm waiting on You, Lord

Sunday, June 27, 2010

But I want it...

Psalm 23 is an ever present theme this summer it seems...the newest thought on it rests in line one: "The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want."

When I think of being "in want" I think of material possessions or a state of being. I want a new pair of toms or to always have clear direction. My summer is full of embracing a new phase. This is brand new territory each day and it's easy to be "in want" over a phase in life. I want to be doing missions or married or to see where my future is headed...I am "in want" over things that make me "enough." None of those are bad fact they are enjoyable things, but they aren't everything. The pastor of my church asked the congregation last Sunday to fill in the blank, "The thing about __________ is, although it is a wonderful thing, if I am not enough without it, I will never be enough with it." I wonder if that blank could be a season or phase or point in life rather than just a possession or person.

So in order to be free from "want" I must first identify what is holding me. I pray you would join me in this pursuit to live in the freedom that was bought for us and the beautiful life that is painted in Psalm 23.

Thursday, June 3, 2010


Sometimes it rains. Sometimes I don't wear shoes. Sometimes coffee makes the whole day better. Sometimes laughing is all that we need. Sometimes we give things up because the return is better. Sometimes we dig our heals in.

I read 1 Samuel 15 the other day...all about Samuel and Saul...moral: Saul is arrogant and Samuel is diligently obedient. Both believe with everything they are making a sacrifice-a sacrifice for God. It's funny the way we are willing to sacrifice if we know there is a bigger and better reward. But is that really sacrifice? Sure, we are giving something up aka sacrificing something but is it true and total sacrifice if we are looking for reward? Wouldn't that just be waiting?

I wonder if sacrifice isn't more about the heart and less about the eventual gain. Motivation that comes out of a genuine desire to please God whether rewarded or not rather than a motivation to see something better in place of what we are sacrificing.
(DISCLAIMER: I fully believe God gives good gifts and when we are in seasons of waiting or when no is the answer there is a better plan in store always because God is a good God. I am talking about the condition of our hearts ...)

I'll speak for myself now: I had plans this summer. I had plans for the upcoming year. My plan did anything but work out. And what my plan was included sacrifice. Sacrifice of time with friends, family, relaxation, safety, comfort, was an exciting plan with lots of adventure and "sacrifice." This plan I'm living now...the plan I was not excited about but the plan I was meant for is sacrifice of my immediate desires. I struggle with it most days because I want what I want but I'm living what God wants and learning that, as my devotional said today, sometimes obedience is the sacrifice.

So then this begs the question: is it obedience without sacrifice? Is sacrificial obedience my goal if all I'm looking for is something to replace what I gave up? Am I the core of all?

*Enjoying the adventure of this summer*

Saturday, May 15, 2010


Pause. Take a deep breath. Listen.

As Christians we are called to rest. Not to be lazy. Not to excuse inactivity. But to replenish. To make loving, forgiving, speaking truth and worshiping even possible. It's part of abiding in Him. I haven't truly rested-not as a break for part of a day but as a life style in...wait...have I ever?
Psalm 23 (He makes me lie down in green pastures and leads me along quiet waters...) is admired and looks excellent on a bathroom stitching but dare I say, is not lived day to day. My goal this summer: rest. That means time with Him, seeking His heart, learning more of His word, loving His people and pursuing them. It means sitting with my fears, insecurities and hopes then laying them before Him. It means asking God to break me, mess with my heart, renew my mind, transform my actions and lead me out. It doesn't sound like rest, but if I am truly in the presence of my Creator, it is.

Here is what I long for:
To rest my head on His chest and feel the tension in my body release
To look at Him in awestruck wonder
To tell Him all about my day-to thank Him, share my heart, release everything and listen
To rejoice and celebrate in His goodness and faithfulness
For Him to show me how to love
For Him to break me for people
To see hearts and passions focused on Him
To be a part of His story