Friday, May 21, 2010

Where I will be spending the next 4 months...

I am overwhelmingly excited to be back in Kenya, and able to work among the beautiful Maasai, as well as other amazing tribes and communities of Kenya. There is much work to be done, much to learn, and many to love. My prayer is that my heart would be soft and pliable, humble and learning, willing to do any and every blessed thing laid before me, my my good and His glory. There is so much work to do, so much that the enemy that has tried to destroy.

But Jesus....

He changes everything.

Will you join me in the fight for justice, redemption, and love?

If you would like to be added to our list to receive newsletter updates, please feel free to email me or leave a comment below. If you would like to stand with us financially, please leave a comment and I will get in touch to let you know how, or visit I will blog as much as possible. We leave June 3rd. Much to do. Much to pray over.

Jesus changes everything.

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Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The Robbery

Yesterday I witnessed a robbery. It wasn't violent with guns drawn, but rather fast and abrasive. I was entering the Dillards of our local mall, when a man and woman came smashing through the door with arms full of loot. They barreled over my children who were sauntering ahead of me, which is what got my attention to begin with. As they plowed down my girls, I noticed the arms full of purses, nice, expensive purses and the man who was waiting just outside the door to whisk them away.

I was with a girlfriend at the time, and the two of us stood in silence for a moment, stunned by what we had just seen, feelings of helplessness and violation lapping over us. We walked inside the store to see a bare shelf that was previously occupied by these lavish brand name purses, the security chain that had held them, cut and dangling over the edge.

We alerted store clerk to what we had just seen, which brought stunned faces, slight confusion and anger, and calls to security. But my heart was broken, and remains to be, over the despair that I saw.

What would drive a person to such desperation, such stupidity, as to rip off bags like that? Such selfishness, such lack of care for humanity, such depravity and brokenness.

As I said yesterday though, you just never know the journey a person is on, or how they got on it. What you can know about an incident such as this is that a person is broken and desperate to be driven to such selfish choices. They have bought a lie and are believing the enemy for a victory, on which he can never deliver.

Scripture says that the thief has come only to steal, kill and destroy. This is the only thing on which the Thief can deliver. But Jesus...

Oh how I love that phrase. That, in and of itself is enough.

But Jesus...

He comes that we may have life, and have it to the full.

But Jesus...

He can deliver on His promises.

But Jesus...

With Him it's different. There is hope in the most hopeless of situations and circumstances. It doesn't make sense and it may seem like over-simplified Christianese. But He brings hope.

Or maybe it's the peace that from letting go and trusting Him. No need to worry; the Savior's got this.

Or maybe it's the comfort that comes from knowing that in the end, the right path that we choose today for His Name's sake will all be worth it.

See, He delivers on His promises. The Thief, though, doesn't have a leg to stand on. And so he kills and destroys, and leads folks to believe that they need to steal some bags for who knows what reason.

Oh, but if they knew Jesus...He changes everything.

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Monday, May 10, 2010

Beauty for Ashes

Tonight I met with a fellowship of some amazing women. I am new to their group and am absolutely loving getting to know them. Now, I have been a part of women's groups before, where they sit around and chat and gab and maybe throw some Jesus talk into the mix. But these ladies...these ladies are different. These gals don't fool around with the Jesus business. They get right into it and get their hands dirty, cheeks wet with tears, hearts open and bare and vulnerable. These ladies dig.

I was humbled and honored tonight to hear one mommy's story of great loss and heartache. How does a mommy do it? How does she bury her baby after suffering such loss of life? In the years working in the Pediatric ICU, I often wondered that. When we would lose a patient, it was hard and heart-wrenching, but at the end of the experience, we gently carry the child to the morgue and then return to care for another patient. I don't mean that as callously as it may sound, but that's the bottom line of it.

But the mommy? How does she leave the hospital? How does one walk back out the car and drive away, knowing that she will not be returning for her child? How does a mother bury a child, and yet still breathe? How does she survive that?

I saw the heart of this mommy tonight, still grieving 9 years later, still aching over the magnificent love for her beautiful son. I saw this mommy, whom I have admired, never having known before the reality of her journey. Isn't that the case for most of us? That most of us don't really know the journeys that our brothers and sisters have traveled to get to this place now? But this sister tonight...I saw Jesus in her.

Such strength in broken weakness.
Such humility in incredible hurt.
Such surrender where there could easily be defiance.
Such worship where there is unimaginable pain.

Such beauty.

She has a perspective on mommyhood that most of us will never know, would never wish to know, and yet would always long to see life with such compassion, grace, mercy and unconditional love. She has a gentleness about her that just cannot be defined. She knows how precious it all is, and how easily it is lost. She knows what it is to cherish.

I mourn with my sister who mourns. I honor her journey, for thus far the Lord has brought her. And He will continue to do so...

Love you, sister of mine. Praise God for who you are, who He has made you to be.

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Sunday, May 9, 2010

A Mother's Prayer

Today is a day to celebrate mothers, and I honor the mothers of the world. I myself am honored to be among the ranks of mothers of the world, and feel the weight of the pressure and responsibility to see my girls become leaders and influencers of the next generation. I adore my daughters, and most days, absolutely love being their mommy. But this is, by no means, something I take lightly. Anyone who knows me knows that there is not much that I take lightly, but this one...this one is a driving force. 

When I was a kid, my folks used to say, "I hope you have kids just like you some day."

Please, God, no. Please don't let them be like me. 

This is how I know God is real and active and present. His healing hand continues to move and work in my own life, freeing me from insecurities that have plagued me for a lifetime, restoring a heart that the enemy tore apart.

Please, God. Don't let them be like me. 

Let them be strong and confident. Let them know You and Your statutes. Let them take the right path, rather than experimenting with every bad choice possible. Let them know and believe that You are worth everything that they will go through and every stand they choose to make for Your Name's sake. 

Please, God. Spare them from being like me. 

I love being a mommy and love my girls more than I will ever be able to express. I pray for the wisdom and discernment to show them such love everyday of their lives. 

Happy Mother's Day, y'all!

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Saturday, May 8, 2010

And then life...

Somehow life has a funny way of becoming oh-so busy. With a husband who travels more often than not, three little ones under the age of 5, a house to run, and somehow a life to be involved in, many of the things that I love and are passionate about get pushed to the back burner. At the end of the day, my brain hurts too much to try to form complete sentences, much less put together a coherent blog of any kind.
And so here it has sat. 
I must say that I have been forced to reevaluate many things in my own life lately. I have been challenged in what I believe and what it is based upon. I have been requested by some to speak or write about less controversial topics, as it is viewed as being too political. 
I can easily confess that I have a very sensitive spirit. I always have. It has toughened a bit through the last several years, but I still remain very sensitive to many things in general. That's not necessarily a bad thing, though some would argue otherwise. It is what it is, and I remain with the choice of what to do with it. 
I read an interesting quote recently: 
Research shows that the more elements make up your identity, the less threatening it is when any one element is threatened. Losing your job might be a blow to your self-esteem, but the fact that you lead your local alumni association gives you a comforting source of self-respect.
That came from a book that I have been reading through called "The Happiness Project" and has been a great source of inspiration and refocusing on many things for me. I stepped out of the career world when I decided to embrace mommyhood and support my husband's vision as his helpmate. I was by far no expert nurse, but I was a good nurse and loved the opportunity to be a part of a healing process for families at their lowest points. It was a great source of satisfaction and accomplishment. But it was my choice to walk away and I do not regret it. 
But I think it is safe to say that there are days when I flounder as a stay-at-home mom, not able to feel a sense of accomplishment or productivity. I enjoy writing, and yet am challenged most days to say anything beyond toddler talk. 
I have been told that my blog is not an effective way to reach people, or reach out to people. Pow.
I have been told that my posts are too controversial, even political, and pose a problem for those around me. Pow.
I have been told I should submit posts for censorship before posting. Pow.
For a girl with a sensitive spirit, this all comes as quite a blow and leaves me...floundering.
It leaves me with no voice and just really wondering what to do now. And yet God remains to be God over me, and the calling and gifts I have received remain to be there for Kingdom uses.
Defend the weak.
Speak on behalf of those who cannot speak themselves.
Maybe no one reads it. Maybe no one cares. Maybe no one agrees.
It's OK.
So there, I've put it out there. Random, yes. Maybe I just needed a place to start again after not having written anything for so long. Life is hard and complicated sometimes. It gets messy and people take offense. We lack grace and love and would rather close people out than feel awkward or condemned or disliked. And at the end of the day, my introverted self would much rather curl up in silence with a book than engage in risky business. But maybe some refocusing will get me going again. That's what I'm praying for.

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