Wednesday, September 30, 2009


Fall is in the air and breathing it in just makes you feel alive. Shep and I love this time of year. We met in the early fall and fell in love so that makes this time of year very special for us anyway.

The completely clear bright blue sky.
The touch of cool in the air without a hint of hot Georgia haze or humidity.
The sounds of high school marching bands.
Fall festivals complete with candied apples and cotton candy.
Going for rides just to glimpse the masterpiece on display of God's trees.
The expectation of Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.
It is just refreshing....

God has been good this week. Not in the earth shattering kind of way. He spoke so much last week about me being in the wilderness. This week has been me just resting in that. He has let me see Him answering some of my prayer requests that have involved me building relationships and telling those people about His love and redemption plan.

He and He alone has opened some of those doors and I love it. Don't get me wrong... I am scared and a bit intimidated but He is showing me that I don't have to give a perfect salvation speech in order to share Him. I just need to talk about what He is doing in my life right now....that should be enough to show Him off...

Speaking of right now, we are still in lockdown mode financially. Things have never been this hard for this long. I don't know how we will make it----but if I believe that God can heal my child----then He can pay my bills.

I don't know what is coming next, but I do feel like Shep and I are doing some things right. Prayer, helping people, and telling others how good He is to us are all things that honor Him. He loves to be honored in our lives. He loves to be shown off by His children who love Him even when it is really hard. I believe He will honor His children. I still believe something BIG is coming.

Until then and even after....may we be worthy to live for you....tell others about you....and give our burdens and desires to you!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Pure Joy!!

It has been very rainy around our parts for the past few days. (it has felt like it has been a month)
We were itchy to get outdoors. Of course, we love going to Shep's parents farm. Lots of land to roam, puddles to jump in, and cows (including baby twin bulls) to see.
On the spur of the moment I grabbed my camera and took some pictures of some of the most gorgeous people in the world.

When Caroline laughs, she opens her whole mouth...I love it!! The camera captures her perfectly.
Ava can make her laugh like no one. She is such a wonderful sister and a huge helper to mommy.

Zeke goes without saying...he is easy on the eyes just like his daddy. So glad their mine to kiss on!
I must brag on the picture of me and Shep. Not that it is a great picture or anything...but considering my 4 year old took it...I would say it turned out super cute!
Listening for God to speak.......

Thursday, September 24, 2009

"Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert..."

the remainder of that verse says..."to be tempted by the devil." Matt.4:1

Do you want to see your head spin???

Check out the verse just before this one....

"And a voice from heaven said, 'This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased'." Matt. 3:17

Did you catch that??? God was pleased with pleased in fact, that the Spirit thought He was ready for the desert.

*****desert-any area in which few forms of life can exist because of lack of water, permanent frost, or absence of soil; unsettled area; any place lacking in something (

*****wilderness-difficulty of finding one's way because of barrenness (

I have always heard these words thrown around in church. From what I have found...they pretty much paint the same picture.

In the past 2 days, God has made it abundantly clear that I am in the wilderness. He has sent three different people on separate occasions to speak this to me. This season that just won't end.....this hollowness....this emptiness....this hunger....this thirst....this is what is intended.

He himself has confirmed it to me in John chapter 12...."and he (Jesus) hid himself from them..."

The good news is that deliverance is coming. There is an end somewhere. However, right now...I am in the thick of it.

I am encouraged to think of the power that emerged from Jesus' ministry after his wilderness experience. That helps me to press on and pray through the day.

You know that feeling this way, experiencing these unsettling feelings is so unnerving. But thinking that as a believer I should never feel this way is even worse.

Jesus had to do it....Paul had to do it....Job had to do it....Abraham had to do it....Joseph had to do it....

We act like that these great men of the faith must not have felt the same emotions as we do. I don't buy it...making light of the pain and struggle they dealt with only cheapens their hardship.
Yes, they felt it. Every single step....

Listen to Paul.....2 Corin. 1:8 "We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life. Indeed, in our hearts we felt the sentence of death."

Listen to Jeremiah...Lamentations 3:2-3 "He has driven me away and made me walk in darkness rather than light; indeed, he has turned his hand against me again and again, all day long."

There are so many more...but I am trying to get to my point.

I desperately want out! I want to be rescued right now. That isn't the plan. So, I must rest in knowing that this season will end and I will exit as a closer follower of Jesus than when I entered.

This blog is my wailing wall. I feel that God asked me to be willing to live out the good, the bad, and ugly in front of you. I don't know who "you" are but hopefully you are encouraged by this. This is real, raw, and incredibly challenging. Not only do I have to be real with you before my God but I have to type it out to myself.

I am asking that God would give me His power, presence, and comfort in exchange for the answers that I want. I pray that this season ends soon because selfishly I am exhausted from it. If you are in your "wilderness" and you think you can't hold on much longer....know you are not alone.

I believe every single believer that yields to God will have a wilderness....not every every believer will yield though. I used to judge them for that but I understand now that no one wants to experience this place.

God, please use this time in my life to encourage others. Please let this blog stand as not just my wailing wall but as a walking testimony of one of your kids trying to get it right. Let others see You in my life even when I can't. I choose to accept that this is my season. Thank you for showing me that I am exactly where you would have me to be. Despite my confusion, I trust Your wisdom. Please God end this soon. My soul is weary and I long for brighter days.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Blue Sky Smiling at me...

We have been water logged around here. It has rained and rained. Many of my friends have back yards that have been washed away along with swing sets. It is crazy.....

Today, though....the sky is my favorite shade of blue.

No haze at all just crisp, clear, stunning blue September sky. (I get dreamy in September anyway because Shep and I starting dating in September and it carries all of those new, exciting, heart-fluttering memories with it)

I wonder if the past few days shaded in black and grey make this blue sky all the more appealing to me?

Sure it does.

We never really appreciate something until we have experienced the absence of it.

My devotion this morning had a sentence that just made me that spiritual at all? I am guessing that God laughs at His children when they cop an attitude right in the middle of their quiet time with Him. He knows us so well, huh??

' "You call me Teacher and Lord..."-but is He? Teacher, Master, and Lord have little place in our vocabulary. We prefer the words Savior, Sanctifier, and Healer.'
-Oswald Chambers from My Utmost for His Highest

Ouch!! I know that I prefer those other words because they reflect what He can do for me. Teacher, Master, and Lord are hard for us to choke down because they usually coincide with obedience. Obedience is what I can do for Him.

Father, help me to be obedient. Give me a soft heart toward Your commands. Make me like clay in Your hands. I don't like this part and You know it. It is hard for me to relinquish control to You. I am trying to and You know my heart. Give me gratitude instead of my typical attitude. Change me as only You can! I love you!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Doesn't take much

Just wanted to give you an example of how quickly I can go from being on a faith high to suddenly becoming faith dry......just trying to be real.

Yesterday we were in the car and I was eavesdropping on Ava as she talked to her sister. Now Caroline cannot talk back to her. (she babbles, laughs, and looks at you...those are the ways that she communicates and she does it quite well)

Anyway, Ava wasn't deterred in her conversation with Caroline even though she was the only one really talking. She was asking Caroline different questions about her day and then giving her the rundown of all that she had done at her pre-school. I watched her in the rear view mirror as she held Caroline's hand and just interacted with her as if she had no idea or concern that Caroline is so handicapped.

Then she said, "Caroline, do you want to play princess with me....after you get healed?"

That was it! That was the moment! I went from high to dry right there.

My heart broke for many different reasons. I miss what I don't even know. Is that even possible...
-her voice saying words
-pictures of her standing up
-watching her dance in a recital
-seeing her enjoy birthday cake or ice cream
-watching her play princess with Ava

So, basically I just kind of died inside for the rest of the night. Sad...but true. I felt empty and hollow....brusied by a wound that just won't go away.

Well-that was then and this is mercies...

I cried out to God this morning and He led me to Psalm 77....I read it and knew it was Him.

The Message version says it this way:

Ps. 77: 1-15
"I yell out to my God, I yell with all my might, I yell at the top of my lungs. He listens.
I found myself in trouble and went looking for my Lord;
my life was an open wound that wouldn't heal.
When friends said, "Everything will turn out alright,"
I didn't believe a word they said.
I remember God-and shake my head.
I bow my head-then wring my hands.
I'm awake all night-not a wink of sleep;
I can't even say what is bothering me.
I go over the days one by one,
I ponder the years gone by.
I strum my lute all through the night,
wondering how to get my life together.

Will the Lord walk off and leave us for good?
Will he never smile again?
Is his love worn threadbare?
Has his salvation promise burned out?
Has God forgotten his manners?
Has he angrily stalked off and left us?
"Just my luck," I said. "The High God goes out of business just the moment I need him."

Once again I'll go over what God has done,
lay out on the table the ancient wonders;
I'll ponder all the things you've accomplished,
and give a long, loving look at your acts.

O God! Your way is holy!
No god is great like God!
You're the God who makes things happen;
you showed everyone what you can do-
You pulled your people out of the worst kind of trouble,
rescued the children of Jacob and Joseph"

There is more but I am out of time.......He is good!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Better today

Anyone else ever wonder why we don't see our prayers answered immediately? This isn't to say that there aren't some that are answered right then but most of them require some form of waiting.

I have noticed that as I really try to push myself and force my flesh to sincerely pray all through out the day and then sincerely try to listen when God speaks throughout the day...I am starting to see some proof of these answered prayers.

A few of the things that I have been praying for lately are:

-joy.....when I want to feel sadness
-contentment....when I want to feel dissatisfied
-gratitude....when I want to feel selfish
-faith....when I want to give up
-strength....when I want to crawl in a hole and cry

well--here is the kicker: God is truly giving me these things.

As I have been praying for these traits to rule in my life...I have felt disappointed and even let-down after I have finished praying because I didn't experience a great wind or fire from heaven that has immediately changed my disposition.

What I have noticed though is that these traits are just there. I am not having to work at it or fake it....I just find myself smiling and singing for no good reason. In fact, I can give you many reasons I have to not smile or sing but God is letting me see how His goodness can trump any bad circumstance.

Anyway....I just wanted to testify about His work in me the past couple of weeks.

Also, just a random question/thought?!?

Is anyone else noticing a huge hunger for revival among believers? It seems that all around me I am learning of people who are desperate for what only God can give. I have said before that I want to experience what the first church in the book of Acts got to encounter...maybe we are closer to that than we think. Could this be the calm before the awesome storm of God's power unleashed??

I'm ready.

Monday, September 14, 2009


I tried to do so good today.

Kicked off the week. Got the girls to school. Came home and played with the most handsome little man ever. Put him down for a mid-morning nap and then fell face-down for some "real" time with my Jesus.

I had watched a really neat skit that had two men performers. One of them was playing the role of God and the other was playing the role of man.

The conversation between the two was interesting, challenging, exposing, funny, and uncomfortable. As I watched it...I saw myself and ran through my head what my conversation may sound like with God.

I knew immediately I needed to go pray.

I had to just get down to the hurting point. Why is prayer like this so hard??? I want to bare my heart. I want to lay it all out and expose it before Him. Yet...when the time comes for me to do it.....I hold back.

Anyway, I tried not to do that. I tried not to paint on the smile. I lifted up my praises and thanksgiving with a huge helping of heartache to go along with it. I wanted desperately to feel better. But nothing.

This is where I have to know obedience counts for something. Just the satisfaction of knowing I was obedient was going to have to suffice in the place of feeling better.

To briefly sum up my afternoon....I spent a total of 2 and a half hours on the phone with insurance people, hospital people, and phone people. I hope something was accomplished. I feel drained and poised for attack. My poor children. When your nerves are this shot out you want to warn them to stay away....for their own good. Ha Ha!!

I will brag on Jesus and tell you that although inwardly I was exasperated and aggravated to no end, my voice remained bright and cheery on the phone. I knew that the people I was talking to were not at fault at all but still I wanted someone to suffer.

See these are the real-life application things that we typically want to leave Jesus out of and handle on our own. We don't want to have to exert self-control, gentleness, kindness, goodness, mercy, and so on.

Only He can do that! I don't know why He wanted me to spend most of my afternoon dealing with unpleasant things....but that is beside the point. He showed me that Christ in me can do the impossible...

I am off to get dinner ready and prepare for the last leg of the day. I am trying to turn this annoyed attitude into an anointed attitude. Wouldn't that be a great example for my kids to see??? Let's see how I do.....

Friday, September 11, 2009

Pics from our paradise

This is a "hodge podge" selection of some pictures of us on our getaway vacation. Shep and I were alone for the first part of the trip and then we were joined by some of our best couple friends. (I will say that there was a couple missing that couldn't join us....and it wasn't the same without them there! Love you J Peeps and Lulu.)
On Saturday, my man and our couple friends left me and my 3 best childhood friends came and we stayed out the rest of Labor Day weekend enjoying each other's company without children or hubbies.
It was so much fun and soooooooo needed. I must admit though that without my children around my hands felt rather empty.

How fun is it just to hang out on the the beach everyday and just read and watch the watch roll in and out?
Seriously, I could do it every single day I think.

This was my view from my beach chair. How pretty, huh???
If creation is this extraordinary on earth....what must heaven be like???
My week back home in reality has been good too. It has done me some good to get back into my routine. God has really challenged me to "rest" even in the midst of shaking circumstances. I have found that the more I focus on how BIG my God is and just concentrate on Him and His lavish love for scary circumstances fade into the background.
Praise you Lord for all Your help this week. I couldn't do it without a matter of fact...I can't do anything without You. Gazing upon Your goodness has been my consolation this week. Pondering the many blessings you have given me fills my heart to overflowing. I love you. Help me love you more. Increase my faith. Help me to talk to everyone I meet about You and how You have changed my life. The miracle of changing me from the inside out is mind-boggling. Thank you for blowing me away with Your life-changing power!!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

My "Rest" Test

Home again.

Shep and I had a marvelous time away followed by some time that I got to spend with my longtime best girl friends. My soul was in heaven.

I didn't have to think. I could just lay and soak in the sun. (I missed my children like crazy...their smiles, their smells, and everything else about them.)

I am sure I will post a blog later full of pictures to share from my trip.

For now I am starting the real test.

I could rest while I was away. I could rest when I didn't have to look at reality. I could rest when I knew the junk waiting on me was far away.

But what about now?

Can I still rest in the midst of this?

The answer is YES of course! I am just trying to learn the posture of rest.

The stress of burdens that we don't currently know exactly how to deal with can seem overwhelming and too big.

My head hurts from thinking....
My eyes hurt from losing sleep and worrying....
My heart hurts because I want to help and support my man in all the ways that he needs...
My pride hurts because I don't want to give up or let go of things that I love or enjoy...

So. Just like everything else in my life...this will be a moment-by-moment thing. I will choose each moment to trust that God has it under complete control. I will consider these trials as joy and know that God must work these circumstances out to work for and not against us. I will learn to sing when I want to scream....laugh when I want to lose my temper....pray when I want to pout.....praise when I want to roll in pity...give when I want to gain...and help when I want to be helped.

This is being at rest...I think. I will keep you updated to let you know if I am passing or failing these days.