I sit on my bed. Joy. Finally. After weeks of hard work and endurance and patience and tears I finally have climbed another flight of stairs and made it a little bit higher.

I have felt failure so well in my life. I have felt pity and anger and depression and sadness.
Joy on the other hand has a hard time finding me. Between the hurt, the tired, the worn parts of me, only through little tiny cracks has joy made it through, and even then the joy has been small and subtle.

Am I really a Christian? I ask myself this because aren't most Christians happy? Don't they all have joy? Don't they jump to worship songs and smile during preaching, nodding their heads and underlining their Bible's?

But what did Jesus' life look like?

He was called a man of sorrows. I wonder what made Him so sorrowful? Was it the sin of other people? The lack of value they felt for themselves and/or others? The fact that they just couldn't see how much God loves them and cares for them and wants them despite their failures?

Maybe not. Maybe.

Can I be honest? Those things listed above are what bring me sorrow. My sin. The lack of value I see for myself. The lack of value I see for others. It's hard. It's hard to see sin because it's ugly and cruel to our hearts and to our lives and to others and to God. It's hard to believe we have value and are loved by God when He sees our sin and knows how disobedient we are.

But He does see value. He is the Creator of the universe so how can we say we don't have value when He made us?

One amazing thing I have learned just recently thanks to Jefferson Bethke's new book, It's Not What You Think (review coming soon), is that sin did not come first. Our identity does not start wrapped in sin. Our identity from the very beginning and even now starts with being made in the image of God. Sin came after Genesis 1 and we know Genesis 1 came first so we must follow the Word and the truth saturated in it.

So I sit in this chair and I dwell on being made in the image of God. How does one made in the image of God act? Think? Love? Live?

Like the One in whose image we are made in. We are made to be little images of the God who made us.

His love is endless.
"Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good,
    for his steadfast love endures forever." - Psalm 136:1
 So we have endless ways to show love.

His mercy is new every morning.
"The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
    his mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning;
    great is your faithfulness."

So every morning we have new mercies to receive and give.

He is love.
" Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love." - 1 John 4:8
So we come to love Him more every day because He loves us and then we go and love others.

You have value and worth. Joy will find you even when sin has drowned it out. Even when the dark has seemingly overcome you. It hasn't. It won't. Hold on, friend.

Live in the image you were created in.

Live in God.


Tuesday night thoughts....

My brain rattles.

I'm supposed to be sleeping but I'm not. Instead, I'm awake. I'm worried. I'm fearful. I'm losing hope.

The things I thought would happen have not.
My hopes have remained hopes and my dreams have not yet been fulfilled.

So I think of Abraham. He was told of the promise and he held onto that hope even though it took many, many, many years.

We both serve the same God.
The same God gave him the strength to hold on.

Will the same God grant me the same strength?
He gives as there is need. I am needy. He will provide.

I trust You, Jesus.


Wrecked Faith

I bought a car a month ago.

4 weeks later, my car was wrecked and totaled.

I've been through doubt and faith and back again over and over these past couple of weeks.

Doubt that I'll find another car. Faith that I will.
Doubt that if I had taken a different path, it would've turned out better. Faith that if God didn't want it to happen, it wouldn't have.
Doubt that He will come through. Faith that He will.

It's a journey. And it's hard. It's messy and it's beautiful.


Sometimes my faith soars and many times it falters. It's that feeling of energy in the morning... the trust and the hope that God is doing something amazing. It's also that feeling of dread and fear and panic... that maybe faith isn't quite worth it and maybe it's really not there... so certain that maybe it's not. Faith can be quite good or quite bad depending on who you listen to... the dark or the Light.

The first few days after the crash, faith was hard. I was down, sad. Then, God changed my perspective. He gave a gift. Faith. My eyes shown bright again. Joy followed my steps. And the words in His pages were sung over my life.

This is what it's all about. The glorifying of the Father in the dark... when He hung on a tree and died. The glorifying of the Father in the dark... when tears were all I could find, and yet praise rose from my throat.


It's a hard journey, but He is in this journey and that is where I find comfort to keep going.



A new breeze blows.

Follow Me. Love Me. Glorify Me. Find life.

Sin lures.

Chase us. We're fun. Do it. He'll forgive you.

A choice is made.

Follow. Obey. Listen. 

But who?

The glory of the moment of the glory of eternity.

One will last forever and one will lead to eternal damnation.

The Spirit still calls.

I choose you. I forgive you. Come. Come to Me. All who are weary. I will give you rest.

Rest sounds good when sin has left us empty. And it always leaves us empty. Don't forget the emptiness. Don't let it crawl back into your mind that sin matters more... it's more "fun". It also will make you sick and lead to death.

Go. Run. Run into His arms and run away from that sin. His promises are true and far better than the empty promises sin seems to keep making. Choose life. 



It's over. Here we go again. 

My thoughts paced back and forth. In between the stress and the tears and the fears, came doubt.

I've been here before.

In this place where the storm clouds are high above my head just settling there. Waiting for me to move so they can follow. Because no matter how hard I've tried,  they still follow me.

And so I remember what to do. I force myself out of this place, out of this fear, and I pray, despite the subtle lies, I pray. I journal, take a walk/run with some praise music to the King, and I pray some more.
I fell asleep praying, woke up praying, spent the day praying.... and forgot slightly about the nightmare that was looming around me.

I can't lie. I'm still worried and afriad and annoyed and angry and doubtful at times. The storm clouds have grown lighter, but they haven't moved yet. Depression, stress, and fatigue are threatening to overtake me.

I'm scared.


He did the impossible before and I trust Him to do it again. It's not over. No, the fight is still being won.


War Room - review

So if you haven't seen the trailers, the Lifeway promotions or gotten an email about it, there's a new movie out by the Kendrick brothers called,War Room. I have not seen it yet, but I had the pleasure of getting a free copy of the book to review. So without further a do, here's my review...

First off, let me say that I used to think that fiction books weren't "Christian enough" to read. Ya' know what I'm saying? Like, how could you possibly learn the things of God (ummm... Jesus used parables... yeah my little brain didn't think about that till later.) by reading about fake stories? That was my mindset for a while until I read some things on C.S. Lewis and Tolkien. Mind = changed.

War Room has been a book that God has used to slowly change my heart towards my sweetheart. This book revolves around the lives of Elizabeth, her husband Tony, their daughter Danielle, and Miss Clara. Elizabeth and Tony are encountering marriage problems but when the Lord brings Miss Clara into their lives, everybody is changed, not by Miss Clara, but by the Lord.

The power of prayer is hugely a part of this book. I must say that God has shown me how belief vs. doubt is a battle in what we choose pray for. Sometimes doubt can be the very thing that propels us toward prayer and furthermore, belief.

I have so enjoyed reading this book. It is a page turner, a faith encourager, and just an all around great read. It does have some adult situations so parents keep that in mind when thinking about this book for your children. I would place the age group to 16yrs and up.

I'm thankful that Tyndale let me review this book. Such a good read! Recommended to all married couples.

*Note: I received a free copy in exchange for a review. All views expressed are mine.


For The Love

Humor. Truth. Honesty. Humor. Real. Encouraging. Did I mention funny?

For the love by Jen Hatmaker is one book that you will want to read and re-read (at least for me and I don't do that with very many books) for years to come. Yes, it's that good.

I read her first book, 7, and was extremely pleased with it. When I saw this come out I signed up very quickly to review it.

I read this book in a few days. It's so easy to read with the funny thank-yous at the end of each section and the truth that is put concisely, but so powerfully throughout. With chapters on church issues and wearing leggings as pants (yes, you read that right), you won't get bored with this one.

I cannot recommend this book enough. Whether you're a Christian or not, I think anyone would enjoy this book. Ladies, if you need an effortless read, go grab it!

Note: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a review.


I want to know him

Book stacked on top of book.
Journal. Pen.
Different translations of the Word.

My heart.
Cluttered yet clean.
Restless, yet at peace.

Those books, all those Christian literature, are not there so I can mark it off my Christian checklist. These are because I truly want to know God.

No, no. Not know more about Him. I want to know Him.

Those books teach me more of who He is and more of who I am. What a blessing it is to read someone else's sentence and know you're not alone.

That journal? It's there so I can sing His praises and tell Him my sorrows. It's there to celebrate the joys and remember the hard times. I look back and see His faithfulness and my sinfulness. I look back and see His goodness and my joy in it.

The Word. There are many translations... I need the ones that speak clearly to me. The ones that aren't in some crazy code that I have to figure out to know what He says. No, I need the ones that make you dig a little, but not so much that you can't clearly understand what He says.

I mess up every single day. This life is hard and my sin makes it harder. Romans 7 was meant for me. Indeed, I am the worst sinner and He is the great Savior.

I may act like a Pharisee at times, but today I just want to know Him.


The beast returning...

I felt it in the early morning.

The beast. Awakened yet again. The gloom and darkness pulls so heavy.

Go back to sleep.
Roll over. 
Close your eyes. 
Pray. Don't give in. 
Those are lies. Don't listen to them! 
Oh... it's gonna be a day. Just hold on.

The thoughts are always swirling.

But the thoughts? The thoughts I can deal with through God. The feelings though? Those are much harder to turn away from. The anxiety, the depression... oh yes. I know those too well. The lies from Satan, the lies from the past, the lies in the present... all congregate to the bottom of my stomach and the inside of my heart.

They seep through the crevices and then decide to explode. Causing not only my head to spin, but my heart to plummet as well.

Oh, God. Lord, it's dark. It's scary. It's hard to explain. I know You see. I l know you hear. I know You're here.

Tell that to your heart. Tell that to your mind. Speak it. Sing it. Know it. Believe it. Darkness cannot overcome light. 

Jesus, help me. 


The beauty of ugly

Today was ugly.

I am talking, sweating in the car (because it is definitely 100 degrees outside), makeup running down my face (because I was crying and sweating... yep. At the same time. UGLY.) I said a few cuss words that I SO wish I could take back. I got mad about nothing. It was bad.

The Lord is gracious.

Was my Father sad about how I acted? Totally. He was probably disappointed too.

But He is gracious.

He has blessed me with a gracious person who loves me far more than I deserve. He has blessed with the knowledge that even when I fail, H i s love NEVER does.

Today was ugly. Yes. But it was also beautiful. I was reminded in the form of truth spoken gently by the Holy Spirit and by the love of one of the most faithful people, that though I fail, love  n e v e r  does.

Wow. Thank You, Lord!!!!