You are the quiet I find in my heart
You are the stillness I seek
You are my wise counselor
You are my source of peace
When God showed up to rescue me, I was highly addicted to crystal meth, weighed under 100 lbs and lived in a little shack with my boyfriend where he cooked and sold meth. We stole food from the grocery store to eat and literally had nothing except our habit and a life consumed with fulfilling that habit.
You’re more than a Savior to me
You are the One who came to rescue me
You showed up when no one else could
You came into the darkness like You said You would.
And now I am free
Free to get to know You
As the One who has captured my soul.
Jesus You’re more than a Savior to me.
For all the times You spoke
And I didn’t hear
The times You tried to get my attention
And I came nowhere near
For the times You shouted
Waving Your hands in the air
And in the silence You still whispered
Reminding me You cared
For the times You held me gently
As I wept in Your arms
The times You sent me warnings
To keep me out of harm
The times You’ve made me laugh
With Your wit, humor and charm
Your love, Your strength, Your kindness
Because that’s just Who You are.
Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you.
What fills in your gaps?? We are given a certain amount of information, indisputable facts. In between the facts, point A and point B, there is empty space. And in this empty space, we place our assumptions. These assumptions have a lot of room to roam. So what are you roaming with? What fills in your gaps between point A and point B. Is it offense or understanding? Is it condemnation or grace? Is it apathy or passion? Is it cynical or beautiful? I’ve been paying closer attention to the thoughts that rule my day and want to encourage others to do the same. Watch your gaps!
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
When we evaluate people, we evaluate them on what we have experienced. Therefore, our evaluations are ALWAYS limited to some degree. If you were to look at my mistakes and judge them based on your experience, my mistakes may appear catastrophic! But if you were to compare my mistakes today to my mistakes from 15 years ago, you would be astonished at my growth! Therefore evaluations are always relative. And that is where perspective plays such a huge role in our judgments. We seem to always be praising the idea of not judging one another until it doesn’t make sense to us. Then judging seems the right thing to do. I get it. I do it too. But I’m trying my best to understand that just because I don’t understand someone’s actions doesn’t mean I have the right to judge them but to try my best to give them understanding, forgiveness, compassion and kindness.
Jesus is with me
because I have the greatest need
He didn’t come for the Saints
For those strong in good deeds
He came for sinners
He came for me
On hearing this, Jesus said to them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”
Pillars of strength, confidence,
kindness, good intent
Laid in goodness, forgiveness
Perseverance and merriment
A few years ago I took a dance class at a gym that I quickly fell in love with. Normally, if I’m on a dance floor or really anywhere that would require freestyle dancing, I totally chicken out. But when I was in this class, I became free to dance because someone else was showing me exactly what to do. So I got to experience the fun of dancing without the pressure to come up with my own moves! So great! Anyway… since then, dance classes have become my very favorite.
During most of the class, I have to keep my eyes on our instructor to make sure I’m doing the right moves. Don’t want to keep doing the monkey while everyone else has moved onto the kick, ball, change right?! So I keep my eyes on my teacher. I feel like there are 3 major stages in learning new dances. The first stage, I just try to learn the basic movements. “Ok, four steps to the right, four steps to the left, now jump three times.” Once I’m comfortable with the basic moves, the second stage is paying attention to the little details. “Oh! She actually turns her hips to the left there. Ok left foot goes behind my right not the other way around. See the way her arms are held strong and not flimsy on that part?” and so on and so on. This stage can last forever as most good teachers have so many moves and nuances to learn from. However, this next and final stage is pretty darn critical to move onto. It’s called the “looking in the mirror to make sure you really look like what you think you look like” stage. The tendency exists to watch the teacher the whole time without looking in the mirror – similar to singing to the radio with the volume up so loud you can never hear yourself. This can be super fun because it’s easier this way to pretend I’m the next reigning champion on “So You Think You Can Dance”. But, the mirror has a great way of bringing things back to reality. This is where I get to see where I really am and make adjustments as needed.
As I’ve been dancing the last few years, I’ve often thought about how similar this process of dancing is to the process of seeking to know and follow God. And each step in the process is just as important as the next. If I don’t show up to class or look at my “Teacher”, I miss the opportunity to learn from Him. I miss the opportunity to dance in freedom while He shows me the next step. If I stop there and don’t pay attention to the details of His movements, I may miss the subtlety of His graceful ways. And finally, if I don’t turn to look in the mirror, I’ll miss the chance to take an accurate account of where I am to make needed adjustments to my moves.
And just when I think I’ve got the moves perfected, a new song comes on and I start learning to dance all over again.
How free would I be if worth wasn’t measured in friendship
My value wasn’t defined by other’s views
My fulfillment not met by earthly dreams
My heart’s needs met by only You
How clear would my vision be if I erased the clutter
How light the load if I let the weights go
How patient the wait if I fully surrendered
How complete the path if I trusted all You told
“Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”
Didi lived down the street from me when I was a kid and she had honeysuckle vines in her backyard. I loved the smell and loved getting to eat the flowers. It was a really nice childhood memory. 30 plus years later, I came across a beautiful smell in the air when taking an evening stroll and I thought “there must be a honeysuckle vine nearby!” It had been so long since those days of honeysuckle in the backyard I couldn’t even remember for sure what they looked like but because I had no other frame of reference for the strong yet sweet fragrance, I had undoubtedly decided this was honeysuckle I was smelling. And for awhile all of my walks were filled with the smell of sweet honeysuckle.
Until one day someone I was walking with corrected me and explained the flower I was smelling wasn’t honeysuckle at all. It was jasmine. All this time! They have some similarities and both emit a stronger fragrance at night but they are actually two different species. And while the petals of the honeysuckle are edible, jasmine can be quite toxic to humans if ingested. And I wondered… in how many other areas of my life am I believing I am enjoying the sweet nectar of honeysuckle all the while I am ingesting toxic jasmine petals?
Have I mistaken lust for love? Acceptance from others as self worth? Have I misinterpreted setbacks as failure? And looked at my emotions as a compass? The smell of honeysuckle tends to pop up in areas filled with immaturity or painful past experiences. It may be where there is incomplete information or in areas that are in need of the most growth. And this is where it’s important that on my evening strolls, I’m walking with Someone who knows the difference.
I thought I knew what was around me
I thought I recognized the smell
But truly I was mistaken
All this time I couldn’t tell
But the One right beside me
Began pointing out the truth
He corrected me and taught me
All the things I’d misconstrued
So now as I am walking
I make sure He’s close by
To teach in each new fragrance
What is truth and what’s a lie
John 16:13 When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.
My sin is not greater
My gifts are not lesser
Than all those who
have gone before
Equal in measure
For the standard of Christ
Is the only judgement
That matters any more
There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
James 2: 12-13
12 Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the Law that gives freedom. 13 For judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. Mercy triumphs over judgment.
Grateful no matter where I go
You’re with me
No matter what stage, what season
You are there
Running into Your arms
I see all You teach me
Through these storms
My stubbornness gets shattered
My treasures all tattered
My humility is deepened
My sins are forgiven
“Your Love never fails, it never gives up, it never runs out on me.”
(One Thing Remains)
38 And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[b] neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. 39 No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord
Can I dedicate my life to You no matter what comes my way
Can I make You my life’s purpose
And hold my faith steady when I’m tempted to stray
Can I leave behind all my doubts
Never to look back on them again
Can I follow You and defend Your truth
To the very end?
Can I stop looking at other’s approval
And adjusting myself to gain that win
And instead look only to You
No matter the circumstances I find myself in
Can I trust in You to meet my needs
Before I see them being met
Can I trust Your plan and step out in faith
Without view of any safety nets?
I have a seed of faith
And oh how small it feels some days
But You say a seed is all I need
To move mountains as I pray
So here we go little seed
Show me the way
He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”
It runs through every inch of me
It seeps into my head
It covers all the trouble I see
It leaves my soul well fed
It demands kindness to all
It leaves no room to judge
It dictates my perspective
It fills my heart with love
This is not the path I had in mind
These are not the troubles I would have designed
But my easy roads would never have known
The beauty your paths have shown
so I will trust in you
I just found this poem/song from 2006 while going through old journals and I don’t think I’ve ever posted it. Lots and lots of questions in these old journals and it’s encouraging to see how many of those questions have since received answers or just gone away. It’s a lovely reminder that seasons are just that… seasons – they don’t last forever – they change. Harsh winters do turn into beautiful springs. Happy Sunday 💗
A pretty face – torn up heart
Missing pieces – falling apart
Looking for a seamstress
Holding the thread
Where do I begin?
So many blessings
But thoughts so confused
But it will only approach
Like the waves
Calm this sea
Make sense out of me
Put to rest my questions
Lay out Your path before me
I am at the brink of despair
With so many doubts of why I am here
Put an end to this wrestle
Please calm me, wash me
and my fears<<<<
In the darkness, hope becomes visible
It’s the glimmer of light around the bend
In doubt, faith becomes tangible
Turning trials into a dearest friend
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance
My shame tries to claim me
Tries to define and name me
But You have something
different to say
You say I’m a child of God
My past tries to haunt me
Tries to destroy and taunt me
But You have something
Different to say
That I am forgiven and loved
Not chained to my sin
But to Your presence within
I am free to let go and grow
So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith,
Give me a rule
And I’ll try not to break it
Expect too much
And you’ll not be pleased
Show me my debt
And I’ll toil to pay it
But convince me of your love
And I shall never leave
Nothing can take me from You
No sin too great
No fall too far
No heart too broken
You’ve covered it all. 💗
1. think about (something) carefully, especially before making a decision or reaching a conclusion.
When I was a little girl
And fairytales were my whole world
I stopped to ponder You
Nighttimes wishin on a star
Wondering where and who You are
I stopped to ponder You
Struggling and livin on a dime
Lost and cryin all the time
I stopped to ponder You
Had some kids of my very own
No longer feeling all alone
I stopped to ponder You
Getting older every day
Wondering if I’ve lost my way
I stop to ponder You
Answers still not comin round
Hoping we’re all eternity bound
I stop to ponder You
This whole world leaves gifts and pain
It’s the journey and the friends we gain
Yet no matter where I am and what I do
I stop to ponder You
There’s a little extra pain in my tears
A little more sorrow in my heart
The struggle is getting the best of me
Each day I’m not sure how to start
One breath at a time
I slowly move forward and pray
That I’ll see something, hear a word
That sounds different than it did yesterday
If I don’t want to be here or there
There is only one place left to be
It’s in a place of peace
Inside of me.
I never discover a solution
My battles never find resolution
My actions never match my words
My thoughts are always disturbed
I never write a famous song
I never find a place to belong
My worry doesn’t cease
My soul never finds peace
Promises are fulfilled
I perfect the art of being still
I continue to grow and gain
I find purpose in the pain
I gain insight and faith
I discover new strength
I hold fast to the truth
I stay beside You
We want magical
Mind blowing days
We want mysterious
Beyond the mundane
the in between times
Full of contentment and grace
We want answers
Purpose, Wanna make a dent
in this place
I need a vail
Need some privacy
As I figure out
Who I want to be
Then I can be me
I want to create
Want to affect change
Want to add something to the day
That will make a different tomorrow
I want to make good things clear
And help bad things disappear
Want to smile with those in joy
And cry with those in sorrow
As the noise fills up my mind
I sweep it all away
I find my place of rest
And go on about my day
There is much to be done
Don’t be distracted by fear
We have much more important things
To focus on here
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
Giving into you
Made you stronger
Giving you attention
Made you hold on longer
Always seeking your own satisfaction
While pretending to be my friend
Yet every road you’ve chosen for me
Has led to bitter ends
So once again I denounce you
Your wicked ways and selfishness
I’ll nourish my Spirit to overcome
This battle with my own flesh.
Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry.
So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves. The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, so you are not free to carry out your good intentions. But when you are directed by the Spirit, you are not under obligation to the law of Moses.
To Your side
For in my heart
To go astray
To Your side
To keep me near
And protect me
From my own way
I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.
A true mark of friendship is when you become a better person because of it. A true friend can love you where you are but also encourage you to change for the better.
A friend loves at all times…
As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.
Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses.
I always come back to You
You are the highest good
I can think or see
You are my heart’s home
You are my shelter
The safest place for me
I hold you all loosely
These thoughts in my mind
These desires for outcomes
I hope to find
a little spark…
Untainted by night
Shining so bright
a little flame…
inside my frame
Burning the mire
a little light…
Working to be
My own melody
Shake off the dust
Get rid of the junk
Junk that’s been piling on for years
It’s weighed you down
Brought you down roads
That never were planned for you here
Your exit is now
Don’t miss the turn
This new road will be free and light
I’ve heard your prayers
It’s never too late
I’ll turn all this wrong into right
Remember ye not the former things, neither consider the things of old. Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.
The other day I was approached by (I assume) a homeless man asking for money. I rarely have cash but happened to have some that day so I felt compelled to give him $5. Someone with me made a comment like “ya we know what he’s going to do with that!” And it was said in a not so nice way.
I understand that thinking and I’ve struggled with it myself. But at the end of the day, I don’t know his story and I don’t need to. I’m just called to help others in need, not just with my money but with compassion as well.
The beggar is an opportunity for me
To offer my help to a person in need
Will I glance away pretending not to see
Assume the worst and count him undeserving?
Or will I give simply because he is in need
No judgement or condemnation, no expectation
Just help for a man life has knocked to his knees
Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.
I give you my treasures
All tattered and torn
They’ve lost all their luster
They’re long over worn
At first I couldn’t see it
I didn’t have a clue
How worthless they were
Until I saw You
Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ
Will You do it for me
Will You be my strength
Will You face my enemies
And counsel me at length
Will You bring redemption
And hold me safely there
Will You offer forgiveness
Will You hear my prayer?
He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.
He’s the hope for the broken
The light in the dark
when we can no longer see
where we are
He’s the producer of miracles
The way out of our storms
Bringing heaven’s power
To our fading earthly forms
Revelation 19: 11-13, 16
I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and wages war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one knows but he himself. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God. …. On his robe and on his thigh he has this name written:
KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.
There’s a loop in my brain
Going round and round
No beginning, no end
No solution to be found
Traveling the loop
Day and night
Looking for answers
To make this loop right
Time to desert this train of thought
And leave my loop behind
Let it sit uninhabited
While I go live this life of mine
Speak to me when my eyes are open
Searching for clarity
Open my heart to new possibilities
Beyond what my past has seen
One thought and nothing more
Maybe fate guiding, intended for me
Just a thought lingering
Tempting me to make it be
So I examine it, explore it
Start wanting it to become true
It intertwines my being
Influences what I think and do
This thought, this seed
Fighting day and night to win
What if this thought feeling like destiny
Is really just my sin
1 Corinthians 10:13
No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,
Discomfort causes me to stop and listen
What is it you’re trying to say?
My normal devices are saying nothing
So I’ve got to look your way
Some might wonder
How I could speak Your name
After all that I have done
It’s not because I’m worthy
But because of Your grace
That I am unconditionally loved
This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same testings we do, yet he did not sin.
I give You
My preconceived notions
My misled emotions
All that I want and dream
I give You
Every part of me
When things got tough and my dreams were taken away, I ran away from You.
When I felt Your hand convicting my heart, I threw my anger at You.
When my world gets mixed up and my vision disappears,
I fumble in the darkness scared to face You to ask for forgiveness again.
Especially when I can’t seem to get rid of my sin.
But You keep calling me. You keep calling me home.
I don’t even know where to start so You help me to pour out my heart.
By this time, there are so many dark corners I’ve hidden.
The messes were piled up too high.
Moment by moment You chipped them away
And overflowed Your grace on me.
It’s alright to feel the heaviness of wanting to live right for You.
In my desperation, I saw how many things are impossible for me to do.
But there You were again, offering Your help to me.
Your power to take away my sin.
Your love to see me through.
Your friendship because You’re the best friend I have.
Your Spirit to make me more like You.