Thursday, December 31, 2015


This week here - sandwiched between the coming of a Savior and the start of a year...

It's a special one.

Just after Christ's entrance, we boot the year goodbye. 

We ponder the King-Child, and then we explore and contemplate ourselves.

Not a bad practice I'd say:

Looking at Jesus, then analyzing self - it seems smart to me.

Going into something new, fresh off the heels of considering our Savior... what perfect timing!

Because really...

We can only see ourselves clearly and accurately when we see ourselves in light of the Love that came.

I like that the new year starts right about now.

It fits.

I'm sitting at a desk, in front of a mirror, beside a window, next to a TV, under a lamp, in a hotel room.... as I write this.

I've been gifted with a few rare hours away with my husband, alone.

He has found the workout room, and I have found my words again.

One of the main points on our agenda tonight and tomorrow - is to discuss 2016.

Only the Lord knows what awaits - so we will seek Him together on this, move forward as He leads, and be all in.

One of the things that I feel might need revised and revived in the coming year, is this spot here.

I am completely aware that my blogger blog looks like it came straight out of 2005 - when blogs were new on the scene, and all the templates were the same, and fancy blog duds weren't invented yet.

I have watched sulkingly as mom bloggers like me catapulted themselves into blog bliss with new beautiful backgrounds, and professional designs, and thousands of followers because of it.

I have turned my nose up at it all - hoping that the writing was worth more than the bling - that it would attract who it should - that it would reach who it was meant for.

And perhaps it has.

But now I'm feeling a bit of a tap - to go ahead and get my act make things excellent while still making them authentic.

Because we should never let authenticity be an excuse for a lack of excellence. 

You can have both.

And Lord, let that be our aim. Let us all be open, and transparent, and honest, and real - while still attempting to live a top-notch life.

I have a fresh and somewhat ferocious feeling as we turn the page here.

There are new paths to trot and trail blaze in the next 12 months.

For us all.

Your kind company along the way means the world.

Happy, happy 2016!

Thursday, December 24, 2015

A Few Snapshots

I'm sitting here at my dining table with windows raised all around me.

I'm allowing the cool to loft in while it's lasting. It's been warmer than normal, so when that fireball rises to it's peak - it might get down right steamy. Is it really December?

It must be, because....

A Christmas tree all rickety and half lit from wear is situated to my left...

A washer whooshing all our clothes clean is being heard from the hallway...



As I've just sat down to write for a moment, all three of the children have come in from outside to beg me for a bike ride down to the park.

Such is the life of a writer-mama :)

I'm off to tie shoes, fasten helmets, and sail down sidewalks for a while.

More word weaving when I return.....



So it's night now....

the next day.

After we peddled our way to the nearest park, swung high and silly on chained swings, ran circles around the mulched ground, listened to cardinals singing and speaking in nearby trees - all manner of things consumed my attention until just this very moment.

It's almost tomorrow.

The living room is all set for Christmas bliss.

As it better be. Our babies will wake up and charge the gate early and eager.

The tinge of rush one feels the night before Christ's birthday - it's something you never get over.

As I sit propped up in bed, legs crossed, husband wrapping up work at the table....

Mary is on my mind tonight.

What was she feeling? Thinking? Fearing? Expecting?

The night before Light dawned in a dark world, the night before contractions would bring forth salvation, the night before this young teen woman delivered the Deliverer - what might she have been experiencing in mind and heart this eve?

It's consuming me.

Tomorrow, my guy and I will rise in the wee hours, light candles, warm cinnamon rolls, and wait for the pitter patter of feet to emerge from bunked beds.

We will sit at the table where a nativity is displayed, we will read the reason for this whole shebang, we will pray that our hearts would stay in tuned and tightly knitted to this Jesus, and then we will tear our way into gifts and glee.

I'm all aflutter over it. Even me here - completely grown!

Lots of merry coming from Mama tonight!

Lord, let me be this way more often! In the middle of the year! On an ordinary Tuesday! In the midst of all that mothering, loving, living holds! More often, God. Joy, contentment, expectation! Not always.... just more often!

Ah, now I feel a New Years post coming on.

In due time, friends :)

Hoping I can get some shut-eye after I shut this laptop lid here.

May every eye that hits this page be blessed with laughter, gratefulness, peace - as you journey through your day celebrating our Jesus.

Big, merry hugs to you all.

Saturday, December 19, 2015


As I walked passed the window a few days ago...

With our lessons completed, and dinner started, and laundry spinning...

I caught a merry glimpse of my girl-child right in the middle of twirling on the trampoline.

Her face was pure bliss - with her brothers bouncing high and happy beside her.

That blonde ponytail swishing, and that toothless grin all showing...

I was struck by the joy.

She was free.

And I thought to myself....

"Uh, I wish that was still me."

I hoisted the clothes basket back up onto my hip, walked it to my bedroom, and sunk into the sorting out of wardrobes.

To have that kind of sincere cheer again...

To have that continual opportunity to seize and squeeze everything good and gleeful right out of the moment...

To still have storehouses of laughter tucked away in your gut somewhere, giddy and ready for use.... 

What would that be like?

The next day...

I watched a sweet video put together by a friend, who was interviewing a now passed 96 year old woman - talking about her life, her beliefs, her outlooks.

I leaned in, listened.

She spoke of optimism.






A full house.

A full heart.



And it was like all my sense dawned again.

Why in the world couldn't I have sincere cheer?
Seize and squeeze opportunities?
Laughter tucked away?

Why? No reason!

None. I tried. I couldn't come up with any good reason at all.

I could have those things.

There are moments, circumstances, issues, ailments, that may make it seemingly impossible to choose joy. (Some of us need professional help with this, and yes! I urge it. If that is you, consider this your cue! Reach out for the aid you need, friend. You're wise and brave for doing so.)

But most of the time, with many of us reading here, we are actually able to choose an attitude of joyful fervor and exaltation.

It's being mature enough...

Gladsome in God enough...

Selfless enough...

Awake enough...

To live a life that rejoices.

And do we realize?

Do we realize what an immense impact this could have on our health?

Our homes?

On the hearts of those we do life with?

It changes, and lifts up, and revitalizes everything.

Especially people.

When a Mama has felicitous joy....

it jolts everyone around her back to life again.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015


Sometimes you have to reach up and grab your day.

Sometimes you have to lasso that thing right to you - where you can hold it, and mold it, and make things happen.

Sometimes you have to extend that appendage a little passed your normal reach, grab the 16 hours you're given with eyes-wide open, and do what you can, friend.

While there are certainly things in life that are out of our authority and realm, things that are dictated to us, things we are called to wait and wonder for....

There are also other things that are just up for the taking.

There are things we can actually decide to pick up, set down, throw away, pocket.

We use wisdom to know when is which, and we use grace when our 'wisdom' was wrong - and then we move onward.

But this day here - perhaps we shouldn't let it just happen to us. Perhaps we should hold it in our sweaty palms, and round it out, and plan accordingly, and choose what comes to pass.

We can't control everything. You'll die in the trying.

But we can control some things. And we are wise to seize this.

I wonder how our Wednesday might look different if we understood that we really can influence and impact our hours.

We aren't always at the whim. Sometimes we are at the wheel.

We have these minds, these capabilities, these resources, His Spirit! We are actually able to regulate quite a lot.

Understanding that it is God alone who can help gear things in the right direction - understanding that His Spirit lives right inside of us speaking, counseling, accompanying - understanding that we are called to take the reins while at the same time yield when it's wise to - this is paramount.

How we schedule our lives, how we organize our days, who we reach out to for humble whispers of help, how we choose to exercise discipline, how we tap into resources, how we cry out in prayer, how we steady ourselves with scripture, how we bump that bad attitude, how we allow ourselves to rest, how we decide to actually go and grab our joy back - these things.... they change trajectories.

Today, this hump right here in the middle of the week - it's begging you to simply do what you can. Fashion what you are able. Lift up the rest. 

When you lay down tonight - you'll at least know that you warred and acted and took hold of the things that you could.

And I think you'll see that things turned out a bit different, a bit better maybe - because of it.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015


I have to write to stay awake.

I have to punch keys and form phrases to really see, and really hear, and really know.

Understanding that I am always on the lookout...

Always mining for some golden rock of truth...

Always wanting to woo you with the wonders that have struck me - this keeps my head up, and my eyes open, and my heart fully engaged.

Capturing life to disperse it - I feel like this is the job of the writer.

So these last few weeks where words here have been few - I feel like my purpose has been too.

I wane a bit when I'm not writing. It makes me feel like my candle is going out.

So I'm here to fan the flame a bit.

It's honestly the first moment I've had to really let the ink flow. Schooling, ministry, a project, a lull- it all hit full throttle about a month ago, forcing me to drop my pen for a while.

I've been asking God to show me what my assignments, my rhythms, my paths should be when it comes to weaving words. What is the goal here?

I'm listening.

And in the mean time... I'll be living, observing, absorbing, and keeping an account of it all.

At this late evening hour - I have a vintage candle lit, the door shut, and iTunes radio streaming.

The piano piece that's playing right now, makes me wish I could sit down on the bench of a baby grand and play something beautiful.

But writers....

Writers make music, whether it's accompanied by strings and notes or not. We're always singing something - whether it's in a tune, or just on a typewriter....

All the while hoping that what we say.... makes you sing and soar somehow.

Lord God of creativity and art and beauty and truth, make Yourself known through the wordsmiths! 

Open up our ears so that You can speak to us, and then through us! 

Let us not be lazy, distracted, foolish, confused! 

Set us all in tune to You! 

Let story, verse, poem, lyric, song - sing of You and all You are and offer! 

Let us taste and see, so that we can share and distribute! 

Fill us up, so that we can leak out love to a lost, broken world! 


It's so wild how just a few quiet moments behind a flimsy white door, around a chorus of classical anthems, beneath the steady Hand that guides me....

How it all leads me right back to the sweet spot.

Just after a few moments, I feel like I'm aflame again.

Monday, November 2, 2015


It's funny how fast light travels.

Since my last post - it seems as if a few rays of hope, and truth, and goodness have made their way through those clouds I mentioned.

Beams of bravery and joy don't always seer the darkness that fast...

but sometimes they do. 

Lord, keep them coming.

I've started a new writing project that's due here in a few weeks.

It's forcing me to dive into scripture, and it's calling for some recollecting on my end.

This has proven to be quite healthy and helpful.

I've also been able to spend a few sweet moments with friends - in person and in correspondence.

Both have uplifted me greatly.

Tonight, I'm sitting here at my desk - wanting to spill words that matter....

but Mama is tired.

The husband is out doing premarital coaching for a couple he knows, the kids are confined to their room....awake, quiet, about to drift off into dreaming.

The hum of the washer has ceased.

I did laundry all the live long day, so the house sounds exceptionally hushed without it's constant whir.

Tomorrow holds piano, dance, math lessons and the like.

A hot fast shower and a quick plop into the bed - is about to commence.

But first....

Aren't we blessed, friends? 

With our washing machines, and our resources, and our clean smooth water, and our mattressed beds?


Let's be grateful for all the grace's.

As I hit the pillow tonight...

I'm praying that His truth and provision permeates all the dark areas for you and I. 

Saturday, October 31, 2015

From Where I Sit

I'd rather be at the library.

But when I pulled into the library parking lot this morning, I realized it was closed.

Libraries should never, ever, ever be closed. Ever.

So I'm here, in a busy breakfast joint instead - trying to sort out life.

I'd prefer to be surrounded by books than the bustle of all these people, so I thought about just heading home.

But I have business and emails and lesson plans to attend to - and being at home doing those things doesn't always pan out to be productive at all.

Therefore, the smell of burnt breakfast sandwiches and flavored coffee is in the air. Babies are crying, groups of people are meeting, the clang of the cafe dish abounds.

I am grateful for ear buds and iTunes radio at this point.

The Ohio trip has ended, leaving me glad for the hellos - but also leaving me gripping a mile high to-do list to sift through, all the worries waiting on me that I had before I left, plus some.

Rain is falling, the cloud cover is hovering low, flash flood warnings are going off on everyone's cell phones.

The weather fits my mood, really.

I feel so very small today.

So very, very small.

And somewhat incapable.

And maybe even a tad lost.

And busted.

I feel like a few bubbles have been busted.

At 32, I look back and I look around and I look forward from where I currently sit - and I feel weird.

So much of what I thought I would accomplish, I never did.

And no wonder. I was always a really good dreamer, but a pretty lousy doer.

So much of what I envisioned for my life - isn't what has come to fruition.

That isn't necessarily bad.

It's just weird.

Pondering in this way - leaves me feeling strange, true.

But please do hear that I also feel thankful. Thankful for the good things I do have, and the bad things I don't. Thankful for the good that has happened, and for the terrible that didn't.

So while I'm at this cafe tending to the everyday mundane - lists, messages, curriculum.... I'm also thinking about where I go from here - in the big picture.

What should I continue?
What should I drop?
What dreams do I hold onto?
Which ones do I hush?
What desires are good and noble?
Which ones are haughty and selfish?
What in  the world should I be working toward?

Asking God to reveal Himself to me.

Also asking that He would reveal me to me.

Monday, October 26, 2015


I'm leaning back on a velvet crimson pillow embroidered with a golden stitched crown.

My feet are propped and crossed under a fine quilted throw.

There are magazines picked out just for me - sitting in the chair to my left.

There is a ham hot in the oven, a plate of snickerdoodles on the counter, a sky high carrot cake in the frig, egg nog in a glass serving bowl, and a woman mixing chocolate icing for brownies in the kitchen.

This can only mean one thing.....

I am at my mother-in-law's house.

Ah, Ohio.

You've been full and frantic this trip, but you have been sweet and fine and welcoming, too.

We've been all over the southern most part of this state - visiting places, hugging necks, popping in on people to say our quick hellos.

It's been three years now... that Ohio isn't home. Texas is our base these days, and I'm glad for it.

The Buckeye State is a great place to go back to, however.

It has these hills.

Hills peppered with red, yellow, orange, maroon, deep royal purple.

This place is a kaleidoscope.

Even since we've arrived - we have watched the colors of the leaves deepen.

All that chlorophyll fleeing so that the true colors of the tree can be seen and shown off to all.

And may we be like them!...

Shedding what's been covering up and shutting out who He made us to be!

Dropping brokenness that has covered up our true colors!

Yes, God. Give everyone reading this a revelation of who You are, of who we are, of what a healthy us looks like. Give us a glimpse of how You see us. Tell us the truth of our identity and condition. We want to be who You wove us to be. Heal damage. Heighten our awareness. Have faith flourish this fall. And let what You reveal and show and surface - deepen into such a fine hue.

I really, really need this from You.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Last Saturday

You can’t creep up on people in an old cabin.

Wood from the 1800’s creeks and cracks, making it hard to sneak.


I have a few jokesters in my crew who like to creep up on their Mama every now and then. Due to the old flooring, I’ve been forwarned our whole stay.

This morning I slipped out of bed early to rummage around as quietly as I could to pack the bag for a rock climb.

The oldest was up already. He’s our resident rooster - always strutting around wide-eyed at day-break.

After a pastry breakfast...we locked up the cabin, loaded ourselves into the van, and headed out to a nearby state park to tackle a trail of granite.

It was conquered by all five of us, and we were rewarded with a remarkable view at the peak.

I didn’t know Texas could look like that.

Green hills, red cliffs, peaks and points all over.

God’s grandeur at it’s southern finest. 

All that energy spent and gone, we went to the local airport diner for lunch afterward.

The smell of oil, the sound of single engine propellors, the scene of pipers and cessnas and bonanzas all lined up along a runway - it took me right back.

My Daddy used to fly me to small municipal airports, buy me a shake, and putter and poke around the airport property with me before winging back home again.

These are among some of my most favorite and treasured memories.

Right now, I’ve traded the old desk for the front porch.

Debussy is coming from the laptop speakers.

The boys are flying paper planes around the cabin’s yard, and the girl is swaying barefoot and pretty in the swing to my left.

The wedding is this eve, so I better head in to curl hair and look descent. My husband will be looking quite dapper - so I think the pastor’s wife should at least try to match.

Tomorrow is our last day out here in these hills - but I’ve been storing it up, and etching it out, and imprinting it on my memory - so all I’ve gathered will be traveling the trek back home, too.

Store the good things up in your hearts, friends. And offer up all the other stuff to a God who is willing to take them for you.

Friday, October 9, 2015


I wonder how many letters have been written at this old dark desk.

How many notes of affection, business transactions, letters of love to family in some far off town somewhere.

It’s an antique. All high and broad and stoic.

I’m always drawn to desks.

Furniture stores, flea markets, homes of friends - I feel a sort of connection with them….imagining writing something fine on their flat tops.

So when the family and I turned the key, and roamed each room of this place - I saw this desk here - situated next to an old fireplace in the master suite, and knew I’d found my writing place.

We’re out of town, staying in a cabin on the fringes of this fair town - so that my husband can officiate a wedding tomorrow. The precious couple purchased us this rented space to enjoy during our stay.

Bless them.

My children have gone absolutely wild and have felt so free since we arrived yesterday.

There are arching old oaks, and dozens of deer, and sheep and a donkey - just outside our door.

We have a porch with rockers and a swing - and we feel like we may just be in Mayberry.

But the world didn’t go away when I walked into this getaway.

I’m noticing that I brought worries and maladies right along with me. Different location. Same concerns.

But this little change of pace is affording me more time to pray and offer up those things - and I’m trusting that the load feels lighter each day we roam these parts. 

And I’m going out on a limb and asking for this great God I know - to go ahead and do some drastic miracles in me while I’m here.

Yes and amen.

It’s early. 

There’s a cloud cover and puddles on the small back road out front.

The kids are ‘adventuring’…as my middle child has coined it…. walking the property in pajamas, catching amphibians, and exploring this small plot of country Texas.

Today holds sweetness, I’m sure.

We plan to visit quaint shops, and taste German pastries, and take in new things before the husband does his duty at the rehearsal dinner this eve.

I shouldn’t say duty….it isn’t one. 

He loves this - one of his favorite parts of being a pastor now - walking couples through pre-marital coaching and officially forging their bond at the ceremony… he is crazy for this gig.

I better slip on shoes and slowly find my way into my day.

I’ll be back to pay another visit to my desk-friend here soon.

Friday, September 25, 2015


Sometimes I long to drive downtown.

Where the big buildings reach to the heavens and the big wigs power play all day.

I've shared here that my family and I long for the lush country quite often.... that open spaces, and wide plots of dirt, and tree covered trails, are something we pine and ponder often.

But there has always been a portion of my soul that thrills at the thought of a big city.

When my parents and I would make a yearly trek across the nation from Ohio to Texas when I was a teen - I would beg and whine and throw fits about stopping and staying right smack in the middle of some large metro.

Nashville was a favorite. Memphis , too.

Occasionally, they would give in to my cajoling - and book a room in one.

I loved the bustle of the big time, then.

And still do, deep down.

Being where the action is, where the trends roll, where deals and destinies are mode - there is an aspect of this that woos me.

So today....we will load the van and ride a short highway - and discover downtown again.

Because Fridays are Saturdays for us now.

And Saturdays are Mondays.

And Sundays don't exist.

When your husband pastors and preaches - your week looks different.

You have one full day off, rather than two.

You dress and drive your kids to the church hour alone on the Sabbath.

And your Sunday lunch is sans Daddy.

I am truly okay with all of this. 

His schedule is flexible in other ways that bless me, but it is different...and it did take a while to adjust.

So, Friday is the golden day these days.

Any time I can have that man within eye shot of me the full length of the lit up hours - that is a good, good day.

He is in the kitchen fixing plates of breakfast for our three blonds right now....

Allowing me to have a moment with you before I scurry off to pack kid bags for our short flight down the freeway.

I'm learning that it is so important for me to punch things out in word form on more of a regular basis - even if I don't feel particularly inspired and faith-filled or up for it.

I work things out through words.

Weaving these few this morning, will make me better company today.

My husband and children rejoice!

As I'm walking between skyscrapers and wondering through city parks here soon - I'll be dreaming and hoping and asking and seeking.

Those high buildings in town - inspire high hopes in me.

Of wild things!

Like penning books.

And publishing poetry.

And writing children's stories.

And advocating though journalism.

And telling testimonies.

And travel.

And touching lives.

And changing trajectories.

And creating words and works of art that move people....

In every genre and mode.

London did this for me. It caused a fire storm of stories and words and shows to swirl.

Houston's not London - but it's here, and I think it will do for today.

May inspiration of some kind be yours this weekend, friends.

Bang-whang-whang goes the drum, tootle-te-tootle the fife;
Oh, a day in the city-square, there is no such pleasure in life!
- from Robert Brownings Up at a Villa - Down in the City

Sunday, September 13, 2015


I'm sitting outside and I'm not sweating.

Down here in the coastal south.... this is a welcomed shift.

After months of hot humidity, we welcome the first signs of autumn here with verve and delight. 

Our falls can be flaky, true. 

But when the temps dare to wonder down into the 60's overnight - we bask in the change and relief.

Because of this...

I'm out back. 

Situated in thick St. Augustine, with pines and palms as my background - I'm visiting you from the outdoors today.

My feet are propped up on the opposite lawn chair, a mower's motor is within earshot, the smell of steak is wafting over fences, and there's a breeze tussling leaves and yard weeds.

Cicadas are singing high up in the pines, the kids have gone inside to welcome Daddy after his preach, and football is on the tube screen.


I'm so grateful.

After reading about refugees, and watching those videos, and glancing at headlines, and hearing what's happening to friends and such... my current station in life seems like paradise.

Prospective checks are necessary.

And they usually end up ringing in thankfulness and contentment.

I do have some pressing concerns going on personally, as does everyone else. I do have things happening in my life right now that raise fear and frustration. I do have questions on certain issues, and I do need guidance in many areas, and I do have some hard things I'm handling.

But standing back, looking at the broad scheme, seeing the global picture... I feel full and thankful.

A Texas diesel just roared through the neighborhood, and another mowing machine just now began to tear through green, and my middle child just got sent to timeout. 

I'm getting ready to patch this up and close this out... because it is just about time for me to slide on shoes, and pack a few kid bags, and wrangle everyone to the van for yet another first gathering of community group.

I hope the beginnings of this new season feel sweet to you. And I hope this week surprises you with some kind of relief, refreshment, and joy that abounds.

Back soon, friends. Hugs to you all.

Friday, September 4, 2015


The only thing that should be washing up on beaches is foam.

And smooth pebbles.

And ivory shells.

And century old messages in bottles.

Not boys.

Not toddlers.

Not people.

Not tiny humans completely dressed for a journey.

I laid in bed last night.... face down, hands crowning my face - in shreds over what's happening to real individuals on the other side of the waters.

Not knowing what to do. Shaking my fist at the sky. Shaking my faith. Shaking my head, and scratching it.

Why? Why is this happening? Why am I tucked between freshly laundered sheets when babies and their families are capsizing trying to flee?

What? What is actually taking place? What am I supposed to do about it?


That loved child, face down in the sand, toddler bottom perched up in the air - like he's taking a mid-day nap - my heart can't handle the depravity.

That photo put a small face on a giant problem. 

That picture screamed humanity.

And it screams at me.

And I'm broken.

Two year old boys should be basking in worlds of soccer balls and toy trucks and imagination... not escaping on the Mediterranean.

Two year old boys should be playing in sand boxes... not lying lifeless on sanded beaches.

But no.

Because of the unrest in his country - he has now been laid to rest.

And I lament it.

And so should you.

And we should mourn for this child who's lungs filled with sea.

This makes me punch air. And it makes me pray fervently.

God! Give me my role! Give them relief!

Can you imagine the life of a refugee? Simply seeking safety? Simply wanting life?

No matter brown, white, black, purple, yellow, rainbow, or polkadots...

No matter head scarf around crown, or cross dangling from neck, or jewel on forehead, or null of faith all together - if people are being persecuted, ravaged, hunted, oppressed, forsaken - no matter their faith or lack of one - no matter their status, nationality, or gene pool - they are our neighbor.

And they should be helped as such.

These are humans!

Houston has many displaced people. Help me to forge through fear, and reach out Father!

I don't know the complexities of war that are pounding parts of the world. I don't know solutions. I don't exactly know what prime ministers, and presidents, and governments, and organizations should work out here. I offer no intelligence on that.

But what I lack in mental prowess on these matters, I pray I more than make up for in heart feelings.... that lead to hands, extended.

I am asking for aid to be given, assignments to be handed, salvation to be implanted, and for revelation from Him to come to all.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

An Evening Snapshot

Cheeks have been kissed...

Backs have been scratched...

Heads have been patted....

Prayers have been lifted....

And lamp strings have been pulled.

I have tucked my three charges in for the evening.


After this nightly ritual, I most often feel so exhausted and spent - that the only thing I can do is rinse off in hot water and slide between cool sheets.

But sometimes....

I feel such a longing for a filling, that I stay up and attempt to do something that replenishes the tank.

This usually involves reading or writing.

Tonight, it's the latter.

I've lit the candle once again that sits to the left of my typing fingers here, and Song for Sienna has already come through my computer speakers.

The husband is sitting at the end of our dining table, hot cup of Texas Pecan coffee in hand, staying up late to situate Sunday's sermon.

He loves this.

And I love watching him love something.

Seeing your spouse in a role that rings true to his core - this is a gift.

Thank you, God.

Today was filled with life, and extracurriculars, and history lessons, and more than a few sibling squabbles.

Piano this morning, dance this afternoon, all manner of attempted learning in-between, dinner scarfed down and dinner cleaned up - it was a full, round 24 hours.

My eyes are drooped.

And I'm leaning back far in this uncomfortable desk chair.

And I feel tired, a bit more full, and grateful as I glance at the bed behind me - ready for the plop down.

There is much on my mind. Things, people, places I want to bring up to you. Those posts are in process.... working themselves out, freeing themselves up, and will hopefully be published in a relatively short fashion. :)

Blowing out the wick now, friends.

My cherubs will charge the day in no time.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

The Source

Few things fill and stir me like writing does.

I'm aware that my audience here is just a handful, and that my voice is but a whisper. I know this, and if I'm being honest I sometimes lament it.

But the emptying and surge that comes from this practice, this hobby, this ministry of sorts - it's what makes me come alive and leaves me feeling wide-eyed and awakened.

No matter how meager the readership.

What's more...

When I find myself composing for a cause, championing some effort, exposing some serious devastation, shining light on any heinous act being performed around the earth, - this takes my little practice here to full circle, completes it, and makes it round and full.

Using words to rally and awaken souls....

Whether through story, journalism, or poetry....

It's what I'm after.

So when I walked the halls of that women's clinic a few weeks ago - my veins pulsed as I searched for words to describe it.

My artist friend Jamie had organized the visit - after feeling a fire rise up in her heart over the Planned Parenthood videos.

I pulled into the parking lot of a strip, and right there, situated in the middle of rowed store fronts - I saw The Source.

This is a place where women can go here in Houston - who need care in their reproductive years.

It's a life-giving, holistic alternative to Planned Parenthood.

Praise God.

The Source offers up all of the services a PP would...

Minus the taking of innocent life, plus the gift of mental and spiritual guidance.

But here is the wild thing...

They do it all for free. 

They receive no government funding. All they do, is paid for by donations. They operate on a very low budget, while still giving the highest of care at three locations.

I was extremely impressed.

And I was very inspired....

Inspired to ask myself, "What is my role in all this?"

Naturally, among a few other things, my first response to that question was envisioning myself picking up the pen.

So, here I find myself punching keys for the place - hoping that you will ask yourself the "What is my role?" question, too.

We all have a part to play in giving life.

Is it medical care? 
Is it funding? 
Is it advertising?
Is it awareness?
Is it art?
Is it sharing your story to encourage others?
Is it guiding someone you know to a life-giving clinic?
Is it mentoring?
Is it prayer?
Is it reaching out to those brave women who choose life?
Is it helping to provide care for those needing post-abortive recovery?
Is it adoption?
Is it starting more holistic clinics around the globe?

There are so many options.

If you feel led to donate to The Source, head here. Or, if you find a clinic similar to The Source in your neck of the woods - bless them with a donation, volunteer hours, or prayer.

On average 125,000 babies will be torn from wombs today by the time your head hits the pillow.

Life doesn't have to be taken from the babies, to give life to the women housing them.

Both can live and thrive....

If we all seize our role in it.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

He Covers Me

I remembered grace today.

Standing at my kitchen sink, rinsing off plates and spraying down pots, rushing.

Hurrying.... because I still had a half dozen things left to do on my agenda list for the day, and the evening was approaching with speed.

As I scurried and panted through it all - I noticed other things undone and dirtied that needed tending...

The white kitchen floors.
The stains on the white kitchen sink.
The crumbs in every corner of the living room.
The dust on the bookshelves.

These things weren't even on the list - but needed my efforts, too.

Would you believe that I felt overwhelmed and weak and incapable?

Even after checking off line after line on my list already...

Even after schooling two elementary aged kids all morning, and wrangling the young third...

Even after completing not mounds of laundry, but mountains of it...

Even after cleaning bathrooms, and picking up all manner of things in the playroom, and preparing two meals with a dinner to come, and working out, and scribbling through emails, and tidying things...

Even after banging all this out alone for the husband was extremely busy each day and eve - counseling, working, writing, officiating.


Even after all that - I looked inward and felt disappointed that I couldn't accomplish everything more quickly, better, with more zeal, with more efficiency.

Never mind what I could do. Never mind what I had done.

It seemed all for not - because I couldn't tackle everything.

But then...

Standing there at my basin, water running over utensils and containers as I scrubbed off leftover contents with bare hands....

The whisper was low but sure....


There is grace for you.

You can't do everything, remember.

You can't be everyone, you know.

Look at your efforts and be pleased and satisfied.

And let My grace cover you, child.

I wasn't even looking for it.

It just plopped itself right into my jabbing thoughts and ceased them.

I stopped the scrub for a moment, looked up from the sink, took a deep breath, and thought...

"Yeah. I'll do my best. And You cover the rest. Yes and amen."

It was a sweet, freeing moment for a tired, busy Mom.

Contentment reigned after that.

Friends, it's true that grace is given at no charge.

But let's keep at the forefront....

That this doesn't mean we should play that card all the time - pulling it out whenever we need an excuse for laziness, or deliberate sin, or unrighteousness.

God is always doing His part, even when we are not.


But doesn't that make you want to work as if working for Him always?

Doesn't that make you want to give all, give your best, and walk out your role well?

And then leave all the rest for grace to cover?

Because we do fall short. Us women...we are good, but we aren't God.

We shouldn't expect ourselves to be.

This ministered so mightily to my soul in frail moments.

Thank you, Lord.

And this's yours too friend.

Let that wash over us all!...

And lead us to thanksgiving and wonder.


P.S. Speaking of grace....I got the grand gift of being able to offer up a chapter for an e-book here recently.....where all the proceeds go to digging a well in Kenya for The Mercy House. Head over to Beauty Through Imperfection to read about the project. If you feel so led... head here to purchase your copy - and enjoy the words of lots of Mama's strewn there - knowing that you are providing water for those who very desperately need it. Hugs and high fives to you all. :)

Monday, August 3, 2015

In Response

The only way I know how to start weaving words on this topic, is to begin with Wilberforce.

Before I take us all in that direction however, I need you to know that always....

No matter the theme or purpose of the piece...

I pray fervently that what I write will bear fruit and bring faith.

This one is no different, and is even more heightened so.

And also, I need you to know...

I am aware of the delicacy with which this topic needs to be dealt.

I'm striving for...

an awakening
a change
a reformation

...but all through appropriate means and measures.

I'm aiming for this to be a gentle push. But a push that gets us somewhere.

Lord, help me.

William Wilberforce was a major catalyst in the abolition of the slave trade in Britain. In his day, slavery was a widely accepted and rarely contested practice.

But when he started hearing about the conditions of the boats bringing African people to Europe, the treatment of the enslaved upon arrival, the deaths that ensued from the audacious journey, the families torn apart, the children left orphaned, the children being enslaved, the kidnappings, the horribly true stories of slaves, and ship captains, and other early abolitionist....

He was stirred to action.

Upon the urgings of his like-minded friends - He decided to pick up the cause and spent the rest of his life championing for, fighting over, and campaigning about freedom for those in chains.

A part of Parliament - he used his position, giftings, wealth, and resources - to put an end to the depravity.

Even though it must have seemed like a mountainous agenda....

An unpopular one.
A dangerous one.
A controversial one...

He picked it up and changed the world, anyway.

And now here we sit.

No longer across the waters dealing with Albion and abolition...

But America and abortion.

It's been weeks since the videos surfaced.

And my heart has ached through and through with each release.

And my repentance has begun, as well.

I have felt a guttural agony over abortions for a long while now. I have screamed on the inside, and streamed tears on counter tops, and pounded my fist on walls over the issue -

But I have never really been a voice for the voiceless in this cause.

And I confess and repent.

Of my laziness.

And of my penchant for being liked.

Both of those things have kept my mouth shut and my arms empty.

But the videos that I've watched - of Planned Parenthood employees talking about babies, and crushings, and infant parts in pie dishes...

Has lit a hot fire under my rear and inside my torso.

I should have been this ignited all along. Everyone should have.

Remember the visions that were laid on my mind while I was in the UK?

One of the first things the Lord put in my head while I was in the bath in Bournemouth....was abortion.

And one of the first lines in the poem He directed me to after I got back....was on abortion.

And now here it is - before people's faces now - the realities of abortion.

And so here I am - wanting to war this with words here...and see where it leads me after that.

My goal isn't really to just defund Planned Parenthood.

Or to terminate all laws allowing abortion - although I'm up for both.

My main goal here is for there to not even be a reason for those things.

I want the people...the public...the persons that fill this nation - to be keenly awakened to the killing that takes place when a child is suctioned from a womb.

I want the truth to reign here - in such a way - that people choose life....not that it is simply forced on them.

I want heart change, not just law change.

That may seem like a pollyanna longing - but look how hearts and minds have done an about-face on slavery over the last few centuries.

It's all very possible.

Especially if the people of Christ will provide help, and homes, and aid to those who bravely choose life and living.

Many say that allowing abortion - gives women the ability to take control of their lives and bodies.

But all it really is....

is taking.

A beating heart. A synapsing mind. A growing, purposed, inspired....soul.



Fervently pray.
Ask God for your field and assignment in this.
And go forth and do what He tells you.

There are wombs tonight....that are full and pulsing.... that tomorrow will be bloodied and empty.

There were intact families in Africa at sunset way back on any given eve in the late 1700's.... but by sunrise - family members were missing, gone, taken for good.

That stopped.

Abortion must, too.


"You may choose to look the other way but you may never say again that you did not know."
- William Wilberforce

Make me poet laureate
For the world that writhes in pain
For the child sucked out of the womb
For the prisoner in chains
- From Make Me Poet Laureate by Steve Turner

Monday, July 20, 2015

A Birthday

On this day...

Six whole years ago...

Sandwiched there between my two guys...

God blessed me with a girl.

Typing here, recollecting back on her entrance and her growing - I'm teary and grateful and wild for this spitfire of glory God gave me.

From the very start it could be sensed that she had this certain thread of sweetness....

This underlying thick ribbon of tenderness that softened me in hard places.

But don't be fooled. Running right next to those streamers of gentleness and grace - there's an ability to dart and defend and muster up solid anger, if warranted. 

She seizes and squeezes life.

She always has a plan, an opinion, a comeback. 

She's the first to respond in care when someone's wounded.

She walks around most days with a doll baby on her hip and a purse over her shoulder.

She likes to sit high and perched on Mama and Daddy's bed - next to a lofty stack of library books - where she makes up her own story, out loud, as she flips the pages.

Dresses are her ensemble of choice most days of the week.

And her grandma-purchased Marc Jacobs wedges are her favorite shoe.

She prays over people, and senses moods, and thinks deeply.

She has a silly side - and shows it off often.

She is strong...

In body and in spirit.

She likes shopping, and planning parties, and being around people.

She likes to go, and do, and be, and discover, and belong.

She enjoys a good movie, a tall glass of sweet tea, and a rare treat of snacking on Cheetos.

She is affectionate, funny, loud, quiet, complex, sassy, capable, athletic, curious.... and made of the finest stuff I've ever seen.

And she's pretty.

So, so pretty.

Long flowing hair, and tan hued skin, and blue ocean eyes, and tall to the heavens.

Daddy is already nervous....but very, very ready.

She has changed our hearts and home, brought in much laughter and glee, and rings in all kinds of lace, and a special kind of grace.

She animates, and purifies, and livens our world here.

And so today - I marvel, and stand thankful, and praise the Maker... for this little lady who gives, and loves, and lives so fully well.

Happy, happy birthday child.

You are cherished...

And needed...

And loved...

And valued beyond comprehension or measure.

Let us celebrate you, today.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Marvel the Mind

I couldn't keep up with the creativity.

I couldn't hold pace with the barrage of thoughts, dreams, ideas - filling my brain waves and asking to be scribbled down and seen through.

I was visiting family, when my Mother blessed me with a whole 24 hours to myself.

She kept the kids, while I whisked away to rest, write, wander, dream.

And dream I did.

The second half of my time away - was filled with constant concoctions of creative concepts.

A brainstorm if I ever experienced one.

Remember those bubble diagrams in language arts class?

You start with a big circle - your main idea, and branch out into dozens of other bubbles from there.

That's the mode my mind was in.

And I could hardly get the concepts from brain to paper fast enough.

It's crazy what can happen when you rest....

When you remove yourself for a minute and let your mind open, and let your God speak.

I've often heard in recent years, that creativity comes from rest - not striving.

And it's true.

What strikes me today most, though...on this day I've set aside for relaying what makes me marvel -

Is the ability our brains have to imagine.

We can see things behind our eyes, that aren't before our eyes.

We can watch a movie reel in our minds, and go back to past experiences, and dream up new ones...

And then have all that fantastic stuff flow to ink, and find itself in book pages, or see it's way to stage, or play itself out on screen, or dance it's way through the fringes of a paintbrush.

Isn't that fantastic?

And what's more....

Is that often times all that goodness that is forming in the fibers of your head, and then working it's way out into art - it usually ends up encouraging, inspiring, blessing, speaking to - another.

What a fine process the whole thing works out to be!

And what a wonderful thing to stand in awe of!

Today - if a poem, a song, an image, a story - drops in on your reflections..... let it come to the light. Write it down, draw it out, sit on it for a few - and then whenever you have time for some tinkering, allow that thing to dawn and come to life.

Use what you've been given!

And marvel at it all.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Snapshot: Anniversary

I'm sitting outside here on the dawn of the day I wed.

The fireball that lights our way everyday is rising steady.

A squirrel is having breakfast on the branch of my tall pine, and his crumbs and extras are free falling in a funny line to the ground below.

The birds are singing their morning song.

An airplane just made it's way overhead.

And a pair of doves are doing that deep hoo they do as day arrives.

Two of the squirrels I mentioned above are fighting over food - screeching and scratching.

The doves: singing loud together their song of light...

And the squirrel's: demanding their own way...

They both remind me of marriage.


What a sweet morning!

There's something sacred about the opening peep of daylight.

And this day, in particular.

Because it's been a decade, plus one - since I walked that long aisle and pledged that vow and promised that person I would stand firm for it all.

The highs and lows, and twists and straights, and mountains and valleys of our marriage are running through like a movie in my mind this morning.

He's sleeping in a bit, because I pulled the door and told him to.

The children are awake and eager to storm-start our anniversary - waiting in their room for the moment their clock says they can do so.

Those children....the result of the commitments we spoke all those years ago - they have taught me the art of celebration.

They have showed their Mama that it's good, and right, and worth it.... to mark, and remember, and praise special occasions and victories.

And this marriage is a victory.

It's been fought for...over and over again.

The man I love.... he's different.

He's countercultural in the way he approaches our union.

He goes beyond expectation, let's pride die, and offers out all of himself for me.

And as he does all this... I learn and clumsily attempt to reciprocate.

My gratefulness surpasses words.

The kids we created are eager and itching to begin festivities.

I should close the laptop lid and head in.

But before I do...

May I pray a blessing over you?

Father, I ask that you lead and show Your love to the person scanning these words today. I pray that they see you working in their lives, arranging events, pouring in strength and faith. If they are married Lord, wrap up their union in truth and vulnerability and sacrifice and healing. If they aren't, Lord speak intimately to their mind and hearts today - holding them close and whispering loud of your love for them. Give that to us married ones, too! Guide each mind that's reading here...into the things of life. And let all of us linger on the good, the things of You. In Jesus, Amen.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Marvel at Man

My Dad is the hardest working person I know.

Most days of the week he is flying all over the country helping some manufacturing plant run properly. He's a beast at what he does.

And he got that way by working for it. 

No college degree.

No pedigree.

No favoritism.

No hand-outs whatsoever.

Grit, and wherewithal, and endurance, and bravery, and divine guidance - is how he busted into the awesome that he is.

A dyslexic child, who was told he would amount to nothing by ignorant teachers...

He was forecasted to achieve little in this life.

For him... the letters were switched up all sorts of ways. And the words wouldn't line up right. And the grade school instructors in 1960's Texas called him stupid, dumb, mean, worthless.

This one certain teacher in particular had a dumb row in her classroom. The person who sat in the front seat of the dumb row....was the dumbest.

That first desk belonged to my Daddy.

All 7 or 8 years of him, holed up in that sweaty wooden desk - labeled and slapped with a losing title from the get-go...

I picture him and his cole black hair, dangling legs, squinting eyes - and it makes me furious.

He has since picked up that dumb row desk and thrown it into a raging fire of passion and work ethic and watched it burn to bits.

Because when you live a life that blows the boundaries others have placed on you...

When you surpass odds...

And sail forth in the midst of setbacks...

And pave paths where others have told you there are only barricades...

You get to grab-hold of those others-induced limits, and catch them to hot flame.

(And your daughter gets to marvel at the wonder and blaze of it all!)

Isn't it incredible what we humans are actually capable of?

Isn't it grand that we have soared to moon landings...

And orbited heavens...

And built contraptions that jettison us across continents...

And invented ways to see and speak to people in real time from any spot on the globe...

And projected images onto giant theater screens...

And climbed massive mountains...

And written wildly beautiful volumes of books from imagination...

And so forth, and so forth...

Isn't it thrilling when a person breaks molds, and forges onward, and succeeds despite lowly estimations?

Marvel at this with me today!

Marvel at all the people you know who have punched prognosis and false prophecies in the face.

Marvel at their God-given gifts, tenacity, and unending drive.

And tell them you are doing so.

Show them you see.

Tell them you admire and admonish their fantastic feats.

And thank the Lord for their example, and inspiration, and fine life.

And then mimic their moxie.

My dad turns 59 this week.

He has strongly endured all of the almost 60.

And I have witnessed it.

And I stand next to that burnt dumb row desk...

And crush the ashes under my feet with him.

Because he has wrestled and he has won.

Marvel, friends.

And enjoy your birthday, Dad. (That desk had nothing on you.)

Monday, June 29, 2015

Marveling is for Mondays

We were all resting well and quiet, just passed midnight, in the dark hours of the day yesterday.

All three children were tucked and snuggling.

Mom and Dad had laid heads on pillows in need of sweet sleep.

And the doors were all bolted tight and the windows were all shut and latched, and our world was ready for the recoup.

When all the sudden.....

The skies built up a fury and ripped and roared a storm overhead.

As usual, the Mama here heard it first.

A few slow rumbles of thunder with a few more distant streaks of light brightening up the night....

I checked in on the littles, and all of them were still pleasantly wrapped in blankets and stuffed pets, sleeping.

I made my way back to my room, where I curled up in a side ball and tried to drop off again.

Within seconds, however.... the bolts and booms and brightness that descended on our city woke the whole of us.

The youngest, all three years of him, came scurrying into our bedroom begging for Daddy to cover his ears and hold him tight.

Daddy did so.

I checked the weather, and watched.

The lasers of light that were piercing the darkness outside were a show and a sight to behold.

And that noise...when light splits causes that terrifically loud crackling sound.

There's no other noise like it.

As I laid and listened and peeked through blinds ....

I stood in outright awe over the power and force and potency within the storm.

It roared.

And it dropped rain.

And it ran me right up the grand steps to marveling, again.

The amount of energy and tension that filled the skies that hour, was frightening. And it made me feel small. And it made me grateful for safe shelter.

The whole process is a mystery to me.

How in the world does a cloud become electric?

And how does the electricity find rods on the earth?

The whole thing is mystifying.

It's Summer. And big storms build up down this way throughout the day - and over the next several weeks I'll have a chance to study and wonder and ponder these great and fantastic shows of meteorological power.

Join me.

Watch from a window - how the light beams the sky and punches land and illuminates the heavens. Feel the reverberating bang of thunder that follows. And marvel with me at it's grandness.

And as you go about your Monday, friend... find something, someone, someplace to behold and capture.

Your hope and faith will soar in the wondering.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015


I was on an overnight in Austin.

The hotel room had a wide window facing the heart of that self-proclaimed weird city.

Upon entering I placed my bags in a corner - walked over to the view, pushed the curtains aside, and gazed out on urban landscapes.

The speed and presence and height and design of the big city excited me.

But one building in particular struck me special.

It was a skyscraper.

A fairly ordinary one - all tall, pointy, and reaching.

But when I looked at it through the thick glass of my hotel window - up close and on eye level - I was absolutely awed.

It was a mix of materials all stacked layer on layer.

So many walls, windows, and beams.

All that glass, and electricity, and fine-tuned temperature gaged air.

Elevators that push and plummet people up and down, over and over.

Winding staircases.

Clean water pumped throughout.

Architectural beauty.

And all of this.....filling 30 some-odd levels!

With people moving about inside it all day!

With the ability for all that mass to sway if needed!

It's baffling and it floors me.

And the whole thing has me thinking...

May we never miss an opportunity to marvel.


It's Monday evening.

I'm out back facing pines and palms, hearing cicada songs, and watching the sky say bye to the sun.

And I'm declaring tonight that Mondays....

they are for marveling now.

They are for the mundane, and getting back into the swing, and working well, and doing the little things.

But they are also for a good, sound, meaningful....


Perhaps I'll plan to post on Mondays here? To scrawl out what's astounded, and inspired wonder, and caused me to cue in on the amazing? I'll certainly try.

Until then...let's look out, and up, and through, and over.

Let's stay stationed on the things that are good for a bit.

You'll have to help me.

My eyes tend to see the ugly more than they see the awesome.

So this Monday marveling should be a healthy dose of light for me.

I sure hope your week is grand, friends.

Big grateful hugs to you all.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Snapshot of a Tuesday

It isn't as early as I'd like.

It's already bright and warming outside, the birds have already announced their awakening - and so have my children.

They are holed up in their room playing with Nerf guns until the clock tells them they can emerge from their bunked den.

Opening my eyes this morning, dreary from a late night before, I glanced up at the clock to see what the window had already told me....

My 'me' time would be short today.

But I rose, and am here, and am wanting to type something out quickly before the day hits full force.

Speaking of force...

The forecast is warning me of heavy rain, wind, and squalls.


I've never seen that written on the weather - but that's what's coming.

Living in a tropical climate affords me the privilege of palm trees and toasty winters and sunshine - but it occasionally also brings wild weather.

I have extra water, extra food, library books, and a few movies for us to peruse as this tropical storm hits land today and tomorrow.

My oldest has a thing for all things weather - and so he is our in-house meteorologist... making sure we're all aware of the impending elements.

He studies clouds - the way they rise high in the sky, and the way they smear across the blue, and the way they blow and fall. He has inadvertently invited me into the wonder of weather, too - and now I enjoy a good look to the skies with him.

After his morning piano practice today - he will turn all his attentions upward, I am sure.

I picked yard flowers yesterday, and have filled small vases with delicate blooms. They are propped up around the house - on the mantel, on the bathroom counter, in the middle of the kitchen table, on my small desk here.

All that color spilling over calms Mama. And it reminds me that there is beauty and goodness in the world. This is something I need to be alerted to often.

Especially on days that include squalls of any kind.

I'm going to blow my double-wicked green candle out here in a minute, to head in to the kitchen for the stampede of hungry little bodies that will barrel in soon.

And I'll start the laundry load, and put clean dishes away, and make beds, and scurry off to piano, and cut and dice for the evening's vegetable soup, and brace for the grimacing faces when I tell them that is what's for dinner :)

I hope your day.... renews your faith in Him. I hope you are spoken to in the depths of you over the next 24 hours. I hope, that no matter squalls or sunshine - you hear and see the God of it all, today.

Lord, I want that for every single one of us.

It's late and I better get a move on.

Look for Him with me this week?

Have a happy Tuesday, friends.

Thursday, June 11, 2015


I was standing in the worship service with all the other congregants.

Music was pouring from speakers and words were up on a screen.

Some were holding their coffees in distant participation.

Others had hands raised high, proclaiming what was being bellowed.

Some stood quiet, worshiping in their own private way.

But I....

I saw the babies who were killed after Jesus' birth by King Herod.

Yeah. Just right there.....right when I'm trying to offer up an incense and stammer through lyrics of truth...

My mind is filled with the thoughts of those boy babies found in Matthew 2 - who were put to death because of the fear and jealousy of an evil king.

I envisioned....

How soldiers with hellish orders barged homes.

How babies were stripped from screaming mothers.

How the youngest were wide-eyed unaware of what they were about to endure.

How the oldest of them were shrilled with terror.

My heart pounded and so did my fist.

Instead of my mouth filling with eyes pooled with tears.

And my throat ached like it did in Bournemouth.

And I could barely bear the sorrow.

Now.... sitting at my writing desk, just punching keys explaining, I'm doing so through a foggy lens of eye moisture.

Tears have streamed and my sadness is of the deep, deep sort over this event.

And it makes me wonder....why in the world I'm struck and panged so randomly by visions of this variety. Why I hear and see the details of the debauchery from thousands of years ago.... all the way to now, when others skim over it and move onward with life in bliss.

I do think the pen has something to do with it.

Those who want to write, and woo the hearts of people - they should really feel the details.

It doesn't make scribes special - it just makes them tuned.

Christian artists should never be afraid to deeply feel.

Painters, poets, sculptors, weavers of any kind - they should have antennas to the raw essence and roots and insides of the extremes and all in between.

I totally get the fear of it, however.

If we look at certain stories in the Bible, or we stare too long at the awful things going on in our world today - we may think it will squash our faith and steel our joy. We may fear that it will counter what we know of a good God.

I get that.

The skeptic here - understands.

But I can tell you that every time I have allowed myself to feel deeply and see thoroughly into the crazy polars of life - and I start to fall off into the abyss of unbelief or indifference....

He reveals Himself.

Somehow. Someway. Every single time.

And I almost always then - feel compelled to pen it out. To pen out awareness, alertness, or a truth of restoration.

I don't know the whys of life. I still stand with fist lifted in tense anger over the terrible issues of the ages. I'm still somewhat frightened to really look upon the truth of what's transpiring around the globe. I still waver.

But I always end up assured of His presence in it...

And I always end up wanting to write it out.

If you're a creator of any kind.... ask the Lord with me.... to allow you to feel, while still holding on to faith.

What might come from inhabiting that combination.... 

Just quite possibly could change the world.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015


A few weeks ago...I watched him whittle wood.

From the living room - I leaned over the back of the couch and stared at this first boy of mine... chiseling tree.

This child who introduced me to mothering - he was fashioning tools for his boy trade.

He was sitting on the edge of a red plastic porch chair, Swiss Army knife in hand - shaving a stick into an arrow.

What he was doing to the wood....I'm attempting to do with him. 

A mother - she shapes and trims and etches and engraves her young, yes?

Being purposed in this endeavor is of paramount importance.

The influence of a mama on her young bucks is a lasting one.

God help me!

It's been 9

9 years ago, all near a faint from long labor - I held that baby of mine and felt so proud of the thing....already.

He is creative.

His bedroom walls are all adorned with homemade art and images made from recycled household items.

He touches the keys of a piano - and melody pours forth.

He puts pencil to paper and draws me pictures that inspire.

He picks on his younger siblings, while simultaneously loving them well.

He throws a football and finds joy.

The outdoors, nature, open air - they are his haven.

Dirt, the growing of things, the cultivating of garden matter - he's a sound farmer, even here in this concrete suburbia.

Insects of all variety find a home in his gentle hand... always putting an almost dried out worm back into a puddle, and always carrying around an amphibian or two.

But most importantly....

He encourages me to notice.

I can't count how many times he has told me to...




He points me to things that give light and life - and I need that.

But perhaps....he needs me to?

While the piano and the pencil and the outside pleasures all tell me he is finding niches and growing into goodness...

There are other things that Mama needs to whittle.

He is halfway to adulthood now - and the trim and prune, the plant and water... is especially necessary in these years.

Yes, yes God help me to fashion him into a mighty, mighty tool.

Today - we celebrate.

We open up the day - remembering the moment he entered our world, and pondering all that he brings to it - and we give grateful thanks.

Happy Birthday, Boy.

Your Mama is wild for you.

And she always will be.

I better make my way to the kitchen, friends.

I have a carrot cake to mix and bake.

I hear that new 9 year old of mine - ready for the festive reveling to begin.