Dearest Grieving Daughter,
I am writing you this letter on the Eve of my 7th Mother’s Day without my mother, and my 14th Mother’s Day, married, without a child. And this is the first year in the past 7 that I am approaching Mother’s Day doing “just fine.” I have been doing SO fine, in fact, that I have been surprised. Leading up to this weekend, I have been checking myself regularly, and giving myself space to feel the weight of emotions that I typically have learned to expect and make space for during this time of year, but I haven’t been able to find my usual sorrowful outpouring of silent, private tears, nor can I find my usual “May” visitors, PAIN, SHAME, and DEFEAT. I don’t share that with you to boast of myself or my own strength. I don’t share it as a badge of honor, to say, “Look at me,” no, I decided to begin this letter sharing this with you because I am a testimony of what God will do for His Daughters who find themselves in the throes of sorrow.
As I searched for Tears, Pain, Shame, and Defeat, I found instead, a burden on my heart for you, God’s Grieving Daughters. Women who have come to dread this time of year completely. Women who don’t feel like there is much to “celebrate” this weekend. So I wanted to write you a letter to tell you that you are not forgotten, and to assure you that there is indeed hope on the other side of your pain. I want to be very clear, this letter is not only intended for women who have lost a mother to death. I am also writing to women who have had to live with the pain of barrenness, women whose mothers are alive, but they are estranged from them, women who have buried children, or lost them to the judicial system in the form of incarceration, and women who are raising their children to the best of their ability, Read more
In order for you to see God complete what He began in you, you must exercise the courage to keep going! Motion is the responsibility of the believer, so keep moving toward the promises God has made you because that is the only way to obtain them!
Step by step, I assure you, Read more
Last week, I shared the immense impact that reading Purpose Driven Life had on me this year. On Sunday evenings for the next several weeks, I want to share some of the impactful principles in the book. My hope is that you would be encouraged, and also intrigued to consider reading, or maybe even re-reading the book as well.
The closer you live to God, the smaller everything else appears
-Rick Warren, Purpose Driven Life
I am entering 2018 joyfully sober.
Today, as I thought about the coming year, the word SOBER kept ringing in my ears, so much so that I looked up the definition. Of the many differing definitions, this is what stood out to me,
Quiet in demeanor, Free from exaggeration, showing self control
Going into a new year, we tend to be SO LOUD. There’s so much to prove because no matter how great, or how horrible the current year has been, the next year must be better, bigger, and greater. So we eagerly pop off to our friends, loved ones, and followers, proclaiming all of the many things we are going to accomplish in the coming year. Yet, today as I pondered my own desires for 2018, I challenged myself not to be intoxicated by the possibilities of a new year, without being disciplined enough to count up the cost of my goals. Jesus said, Read more
…The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel (which means, ‘God is with us’) Isaiah 7:14
Today, I join my praise and worship with Christ Followers around the world, pausing and giving thanks to my Heavenly Father for sending Jesus, to ransom my life from the bondage of hopelessness, shame, and fear.
To ransom is, to free from captivity or punishment by paying a price.
Because of Jesus, I was delivered from captivity! Before I encountered Jesus, I was a hostage to my circumstances. Bound by the unjust things that had happened to me, and limited by my own ignorant choices. I was without hope, constrained by shame, and enslaved to fear. Thanks be unto God, because He did not leave me in that state of darkness and confusion. Instead, He sent Jesus, just as He had promised the Prophet Isaiah, some 700 years prior, that He would. It was the Father’s unconditional love that made a way for me to be saved, freed, delivered.
For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him would be saved. (John 3:16-17)
The past two weeks have been challenging, not so much for me personally, but for my loved ones. Two who received devastating diagnosis news about a parent, and several who have been in the throes of the fear and anxiety that just being alive can bring. I was in the middle of a blogging challenge, and feeling deep disappointment within myself for simply not being able to create the extra time to BLOG, while being present for my loved ones, investing time into the women’s organization that I lead, and accomplishing the daily responsibilities of my full time career! In the midst of my wallowing in self-pity for “just not being enough” to get it all done, I felt like I was jolted awake by this thought,
While it’s nice, maybe even “noble” to have a desire to inspire people I don’t know through my writing, it is a part of my DIVINE PURPOSE to care about, encourage, uplift, pray for, listen to, and BE PRESENT for those who are right in front of my face!
I am, HOT, frustrated, and set a blazed, for broken women who are alone, silenced and put to shame.
I am BOTHERED, annoyed, yes PISSED, that we live in a culture that requires women to hold up tattered banners of UN-BOTHERED-NESS! Read more
Welcome to the 4th Quarter of 2017! I don’t know about you, but I have spent a good portion of this year being shocked by its pace. At the beginning of each month, I have found myself stating, “Is it [insert month] already?!” Only to discover the same definitive answer each time, “Yes it is“! I can’t count the number of conversations I have had with loved ones, friends, coworkers, and others in passing, who have not only confirmed by sentiments about the pace of this year, but who have also shared in my anxiety laced fear that, THERE’S JUST NOT ENOUGH TIME!!!!!.
But, What if I told you that there IS enough time? Will you accept that? What if I told you that the culprit of your anxiety is something you and I have full control over? Will you, for the sake of this discussion, entertain the notion that the deficit has not been in seconds, minutes, hours, and days, but instead, that the true deficit, has been in your FOCUS? Does that encourage or discourage you? Read more
If you know me personally, you’d be surprised that I am even entertaining the topic of “Haters.” I am known by my friends for despising this entire discussion. I think people have a lot less haters than they think, and I also think people cheat themselves out of meaningful relationships because they are fearful of , or assume people are “hating.” Yet, as I read and wrote tonight’s Scripture passage, found in Luke 23: 33-38, I was inspired to dedicate this one discussion to the “Haters”, after all, they do exist, and I’ve never argued that.
In the text, we find Jesus being Crucified. In the midst of being tortured and mocked, He isn’t feeling sorry for Himself, and He is not angry at the people who are responsible for His Crucifixion . Instead, He concerns Himself with their well-being. And instead of cursing them, He prays,
Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing (Luke 23:34).
Have you watched the movie The Passion of Christ? I have only seen it once at the movie theater when it was first released. I found myself crying and burying my face in my hands so many times during the graphic depiction of the Crucifixion. I can remember thinking to myself, “You need to face this,” but no amount of “self-coaching” would allow me to keep from turning away periodically. It was so difficult to watch , and I can only imagine that it was much worse than what was depicted on the screen. Tonight’s passage is from Luke 23:26-30. I read it several times focusing on each verse. I kept coming back to verse 26,
As they led Jesus away a man named Simon who was from Cyrene, happened to be coming from the countryside. The soldiers seized him and put the cross on him, and made him carry it behind Jesus.