July 9, 2010
Moving to a new climate where wild life abounds made me a wee bit weary about starting a garden. I opted for some experimental container gardening. I started with an assortment of random pots and decided to try growing a variety of food from cauliflower to zucchini (which neither seem to be happy in their pots). I am finally seeing some tomatoes arrive and my herbs smell great and are used daily in my kitchen…but the Swiss chard, oh my! It sprang up and up and up. Gardening is beautiful and delicious, and the best part is the satisfaction I feel from the planting effort and the waiting – it arrived!
So what does this have to do with living and loving? Well, around the same time my chard harvest began, so did the harvest in my home.
Since Lily was a baby, Bobby and I have been reading the Word to her, praying over her, and doing our best to model and teach her scripture and of God’s heart toward her.
After a season of her ‘testing her boundaries,’ I was worn out and thought I was losing the battle. Then one day as she tried to climb the playground wall, “all by myself”, I heard her say under her breath “I can do all things through Christ” and she scaled that wall.
“Daddy don’t worry there is no fear in love, God is always with us. I can trust him! Then when her ‘boo boo’ was just too much to bear, she said, “Mommy pray for me and God will heal me.” Another time she said, “Mommy do you need me to pray for you?” “Let’s worship Him for he is so good.” “There is a big spider but I do not have to be afraid.” “Dakota treat others the way you want to be treated.” “Let’s be gentle at all times.” “I am free” ….and the list goes on. My heart soars with joy because she is three and the truth is penetrating her mind and thoughts! Her heart is beaming with the freedom and love that I have just discovered in my 20’s. How incredible, her life will be built on the truth and the love from her Creator.
We toss out seeds not knowing how they will be received. Some may fall on fertile soil, others may be choked up. Remember that the Sheppard goes back for one lost sheep, and so the Gardener, day after day, until the harvest time has come.
May 19, 2010
What is beauty? For years I had it all backwards. I spent much of my time both consciously and subconsciously striving to be what I thought was beautiful. Now I am learning to live in the beauty that is already within me. What is it I want to offer my husband, my daughters, my friends, and this world? What is the message I want to portray, the presence I want to impart, the legacy I want to leave?
As a mother of two young girls my prayer for them is to grow into beautiful young women. Not beauty as the world defines, but really beautiful women that are free to offer their feminity from a heart that is at rest.
Have you ever been around this kind of women? A woman that draws you to rest in God. She is a rare treasure, a diamond in the rough. Circumstances do not define this woman. It is an internal beauty that comes from her intimacy with God. This is the legacy I will chose to leave.
May 5, 2010
I am sitting here in my new place soaking in the extradionary view and reflecting on what the Lord has just done. He said if you have the faith of a mustard seed, it can move mountains – so I believed, and He did.
I knew from the time I was young, I would never be satisfied with a mediocre life. I knew God had a great plan for me, but I wasn’t quite sure I deserved it or would be able to achieve anything substantial on my own. I did the church thing, I served, I held bible studies, I prayed with my husband. I did all that good stuff, but I always knew deep down there was more.. and I wanted more.
So I asked God for it.
He then led me on an unexpected journey of deep inner healing. That was no fun and certainly not the dream I was asking for. Yet, through the process, I began to understand that the healing was the beginning of something greater that He wanted to give me. Through humble moments of churning on the potter’s wheel, I was able to see how desperate I was for Jesus. All of Him, more of Him.
So I asked.
Hello, Holy Spirit. My world exploded, and I began to see that “My kingdom come, My will be done,” took on a whole new meaning. Welcome, heart of God.
Life and love – not sin management.
Oh, Freedom. Delight, enjoyment, intimacy with the Father.
I am not a wretched sinner, but rather a daughter of God.
A royal priesthood.
Know who you are, take your rightful place.
Welcome life – and life abundantly.
He said I did because you asked.
So my charge to you in writing this is that…
There is more.
Life with Jesus is not about being a “good Christian”.
It is not about obedience, service, or work.
Let me say that again. It is not about work.
Life with Jesus is the most incredible, passionately wild romance and adventure that you could ever dream about in the natural.
It is a supernatural life, if you will receive it.
It is glorious.
It is every passion of your heart, and more is coming true before your eyes in every moment.
It is so real.
It is powerful.
It is not easy.
It is not the popular way.
You will lose some.
You will offend many.
You will be humbled.
You will be exalted.
You will be shaken…
But, never forsaken.
Some want it, but are too scared to pay the price.
Yet there are a few that contain this fire inside and are burning with the heart of God to change the world. They will never be silenced. They live outside of themselves, and want more than average Christianity at its best.
Who will live the dream?
March 16, 2010
I have been asking the Lord to show and reveal more of Himself to me. I want to really know His creative heart. I want to enjoy what He enjoys, and to experience what brings Him joy.
I had no idea He would use a paintbrush to teach me.
I am not naturally a gifted artist, but I have always had a fascination and desire to paint. He reminded me of this while sitting in a room of artists painting in the spirit. I looked around wondering why am I here?
“You asked” the Lord replied.
He was right! Not only had I told Him many years ago that I wanted to paint, but I have been praying and asking Him to grow me in the gifts of the prophetic. I am blessed to be part of a church that operates in all the gifts of the Spirit, and I have experienced the encouragment that prophetic words bring. My desire in operation of this gift is to grow and exhort others the same.
Who knew it would be through a paintbrush?
Yes, as I sat frozen before the canvas – shaking in fear – I asked Him “What do I do, what will I paint, and what will it mean?” Especially for someone I have never met. I do not even know the person’s name. “What if I am prophetically wrong?”
I waited, and then I prayed.
“I trust you Lord. You do this, not me.”
Like words that have been spoken from heaven, through the lips of a stranger, came a word picture, a piece of art that ministered to the spirit of a woman I did not know. Again and again, He speaks – He paints – He blesses – He heals – He creates! Our God is the same yesterday, today, and forever.
What an honor it has been for me to pray and paint for others. It is giving words of life from our Father. The joy of going deeper with Him has not only grown my faith, but I have truly come to know His heart toward His children. He loves us all widely, and longs for us to experience real freedom in Him.
The journey in knowing my Father has only just begun. I will never stop seeking after ALL of Him in everway. It is more fun each and every day.
I have come to realize that painting is just a picture of our walk with Christ. We are the canvas. He is the master artist. What we do with His artwork is up to us.
March 4, 2010
I was to busy soaking it in to think about taking pictures but here are a just a few….
|free digital slideshow created with Smilebox|
No keeping up with the Jones, no interstates,
no winter coats ( I promise its warmer than Atlanta ),
no chain restaurants, no traffic, no smog & no one’s in a hurry.
We literally can ride our bikes to the office, grow our own veggies,hike national forest trails from our backyard, be at the top of the ski lift in 20 minutes,
& walk to natural hot springs.
When God places something in your heart GO WITH IT! It is far greater than anything you could ever ask for or imagine.
February 9, 2010
I hear these words everyday, all day. With the arrival of a new baby sister, Lily has decided she too wants to be held like a baby, nursed, and carried again. At first, this really annoyed me. I had become aclimated to her independence, and already had my hands full.
One day, the Lord spoke to my heart and said “I have never told you no when you wanted me to hold you, to nurse you, or to carry you. Rather, I delight in our sweet moments together, no matter what the motive.”
He reminded me that “Lily will not ask this of you for long, and before you know it she will be too big to hold all together.”
I have learned to carry Dakota (I love my sling) and pick up Lily with the other hand. I give her the affection she is longing for, and then she hops down on her own to play. If I am nursing, I make room for her to crawl up in my lap with her water or smoothie. I take the time during Dakota’s morning nap to play and be with Lily — one on one. I have no idea how this will look as we have more children, but I guess I will learn as I go. The most important thing I can offer them now is to know they are loved by us, and by God. If I want them to learn to love one another and others well, I must lead by example.
Now when I am holding D, Lily says “I wanna hold you both of your girls.”
If the Lord can hold all his children all at once, I can hold my two.
February 6, 2010
I am drunk in His love.
Smitten in His presence.
Taken by His kindness.
Renewed by His strength.
In awe of His power.
Growing in His truth.
Encouraged by His promises.
Empowered by His revelation.
Captivated by His glory.
Tasting His goodness.
Enjoying His freedom.
Enthralled by His beauty.
In wonder of His creativity.
Blessed in His abundance.
February 3, 2010
My husband and I have just ended an incredible journey that many of you have been on as well. As a first fruit offering, we joined millions of others in a 21 day fast that is similar to the one found in the book of Daniel. (No meat, bread, sweets.)
The desire of my heart in this was just for more of my Lord. I was asking for His presence to be released in my life in greater and more tangible ways.
I knew the physical benefits of fasting would energize, cleanse, and heal my body, but I had no idea of the spiritual renewal I was in store for. Each day, I would pray and ask God to shed the spiritual waste. And He did. Day after day, as the cleansing and healing increased, I could feel myself getting “lighter”. I am not just talking about the 10 pounds that disappeared from my body, but the “junk” that clouded my mind. He showed me that this “junk” was keeping me from entering into the fullness of His Glory. As I died to my flesh and removed the daily barriers of distraction, I entered into a Holy Place where His presence is all consuming. This Holy Place does not just appear because of the act of fasting, but rather the state of humility that pleases God. The bible says, “That you will find Him, when you seek Him with all your heart” and that “He roams the Earth looking for those who’s hearts are pure before Him, that He may show himself mighty on their behalf”.
The motive of the fast was not, “What could God do for me ( although there were incredible breakthroughs)” Rather, the earnest desire for transfiguration.
In my comfortable life, I have learned there is much to lay aside in order to fully be emptied out, thus making room so that I may truly be filled up. At times, this means saying no. Whether it’s a committed fast or just a prompting, I sincerely believe we keep our lives so full and cluttered, there is no room or time for true intimacy with our Maker. Although there is so much freedom in Him and in fasting, I am becoming more sensitive to His leading – even in the smallest details of my day-to-day.
For my family, food is a huge part of our life. We love to eat healthy, and we eat very well. I take much time and effort to prepare healthy, homemade meals and snacks each day. Can this be a distraction? Yes. Can it become an idol? Of course it can.
To lay down a good thing for the sake of a greater thing takes discipline – from the Lord. Each time my mind wanders to what I do not have, I am reminded of what I do have, and how much greater He is.
My heart in sharing this is that our God is so faithful and good. He does not let the righteous go hungry, rather He gives us food, spiritual food, that many know nothing about.
Have you tasted it?
For most of us in America our pallets are so padded down that we do not know the taste of hunger. Fasting was not meant for just a once per year, but for the lifestyle of a believer.
Don’t think you can do it?
Think about His sacrifice for you.
Change your mind?
I challenge you to seek His presence this year like never before. Lay it all down, so that He may rise you up.
January 15, 2010
Some have never seen the ocean blue.
Some merely look at the horizon as they pass by.
Others stare and appreciate the beauty of the shore.
Some stay on the sand, others chose to swim.
Many wade in the shallow waters.
Brave souls venture out to the sand bar.
Yet there are a only a few not satisfied until the have seen the depths.
They pay the price and learn to dive.
It is there in the deep they encounter LIFE.