The Fall

Across from me, on the sofa, sat someone I considered a close friend, I tried to absorb her words.  “Pastor committed adultery.”  At the time, my fragile faith easily shattered.  I fully trusted no man, as I uncovered time after time the betrayal in my own memories that I had stuffed inside out of survival.  I struggled to process what she told me.  A small amount of trust in our pastor had been built over time, but now the crashing and burning of it imminently loomed.  What was my friend’s motivation?  Was… Read More

Painting My Freedom

Leaning over the side of the bed and tilting the alarm clock towards me, I read the time for the fifth time that night, 3:30 a.m. Wide awake again. After losing my last child in an early miscarriage, weeks of insomnia had set in. “Will I ever sleep again, Lord? Please help me rest. I can’t do this anymore.” My tears wet the pillow. You will rest in me dear one. The familiar voice soothed my fears for a moment. I released a deep sigh, scooting my back against my husband’s for… Read More

On Hearing God

My friendship with the Holy Spirit began when I was a teenager. Before that, I knew Jesus as my savior, but not as my friend. At the time I met the Holy Spirit, my life had been turned upside down, inside out. My parents divorced, my mom remarried: from Baptist to Pentecostal, from severe abuse to a new man in the house. I quit high school my freshman year, because of health issues, yet found myself forced to return to school, spending most of the first few months of my sophomore year… Read More

The Fast Lane

Cars, semis, pick-up trucks, and motorcycles zipped around us in a game of Russian roulette. At least that’s how Atlanta traffic feels to me. Yet, to our far left, the cars glided with ease at great velocity, speeding out of sight unhindered by the weaving, honking, frustrated drivers around us. “What’s that lane?” our new driver in the family Sarah, inquired. “The Palmetto Pass Lane,” her father said. “You pay a fee that gives you permission to travel down that lane.” As my husband spoke the words, another voice echoed in my… Read More

Crowns

“Hold onto what you have so that no one will take away your crown,” (Rev 3:11) If you have been taught to live in sin-consciousness, I just stirred up guilt and fear of loss. How does that agree with a God whose perfect love casts out fear? Instead of life and peace that Jesus came to infuse in us, you may have been taught to believe in a God who is just waiting for you to mess up…again, so that he can take from you, punish you, distance himself from you. That sounds… Read More

Chosen

Our identity as the Chosen of God is what allows us to partake of the abundant life Jesus paid for us to have.  Because it is critical that we grasp the fullness of our identity in Christ as God’s Chosen, it is the constant place of enemy warfare against us. To know how securely you are swaddled in the Love of God is no small thing.  It is what the whole structure of our armor in Ephesians 6 is designed to protect.   Every time we waver from this security, we fall… Read More

The Funhouse

As a child, I went to the county fair with my uncle. The rides spun around with screaming teenagers, while children held tightly to their parent’s hand with one and a cone filled with sticky cotton candy with the other. Whiffs of roasted peanuts, funnel cakes, and saw dust filled the air. Fun houses perplexed me. I think I’ve only been through one once, because it terrified me.   The fun house effect, illusions, smoke screens, mazes, glass tunnel that spun around, floor that was at an angle, and mirrors that make your… Read More

The Luxury of Time

The little brown donkey in the above photo is my family’s donkey, Henry.  It makes me smile just looking at him.  Henry is a sweet boy.  We had lived in the country for a few years before we found Henry at an auction house and brought him home.  By then we had become familiar with Horses, Cows and Goats, but not Donkeys. Donkeys are different. Donkeys are said to be stubborn, but I think they’re really just very smart, have a good memory, are very discerning and VERY opinionated. Some time before Henry became… Read More

What’s the Rub

“Angry voices harden hearts.  Gracious voices disarm them.  May we be known for our kindness to people, but fierce in the battle with evil.”   -Beth Grant How do I stand up for what I feel is right with grace?  How can we listen to others who disagree with us, love them well, and not push them away? I love people being at peace with one another.  I hate confrontation.  I love unity.  I love being around people that carry “grace” and “mercy” well.  But sometimes when you really love someone, you… Read More

Letting Go

Last evening, I led a painting class (a new ministry tool the Lord has placed in my hands), at which we were creating ocean scenes.  As my brush blended the hues of blues and white to create the cresting waves, my mind floated back to a summer three years ago.  Early one morning, I stood on the edge of sand, with my toes tickled by the foam created by waves lapping my feet.  I wiggled my feet down into the cool, course sand, as I watched the blazing orange sun peek above… Read More