The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me...
To comfort all who mourn, To console those who mourn in Zion,
To give them beauty for ashes, The oil of joy for mourning,
The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness;
That they may be called trees of righteousness,
The planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified."

Isaiah 61:1,2c,3 (New King James Version)

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Josh Wilson - Before The Morning

Once you feel the weight of glory,
all your pain will fade....
How amazing is that? Wow. Such as awesome feeling to believe you have glimpsed the glory of God. I see it Chey's smiles, in my ache of missing Mak, the phone calls from friends, and the support of family. I see it when my brothers and sisters choose to be vessel and share God's love. This has helped lighten the load, Love you all!

Friday, November 26, 2010

When all the uncertainty begins to settle...

the new reality begins.
The visions have stopped of that horrible morning, instead I see her sweet face and here the echoes of her curious screams. My heart breaks. Reminiscing is bittersweet, it doesn't come with the trauma and shock of the initial event, it comes with a longing, hurting, heart felt plea to God asking "why" for the first time and temporarily halting my attempt to pursue "what" my life should be, focusing instead on the past and wondering why this is what it is. I'll only stop momentarily  - I know that I have things to do, things I want to do, to pursue and fulfill my purpose, allowing my life to be God's and God's alone and accepting it's not about me.
It's a tough topic. How are we supposed to live a life that isn't about us, when we are loved by such a righteous God? How are our heads not to inflate when we realize the Lord of Lords, King of Kings, The Beginning and the End, our Alpha and Omega loves us in such a pure way it was given its own name: Agape? Between you and me, had God been my boyfriend in high school I'm pretty sure we'd be voted prettiest couple and been SOOOO much more popular than that cheerleader and football player. How am I not supposed to see the prize of heaven and think that I must be someone who is pretty special to be loved so much that my God is going to make this world new and give me happiness I've never experienced? How? My love and respect and FEAR of God grows daily. My conviction goes so much farther than what I demonstrate outwardly I reflect on feelings of my heart. Want to living selfishly - but fully knowing as a human I will never be GOD, but strive to be like him. To love like he does. Hillsong sings a song that puts it so eloquently it furthers my conviction. "Break my heart for what breaks yours, everything I am for your kingdom's cause..."
Yesterday, I realized I have SO much to be thankful for. How blessed I truly am in my life. How ironically I am happier and more fulfilled today - than I have been in a very long time.  James 1:12 says "Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him." My trials this year have been immense, things I thought would never be part of my life story. When I cried out for God he came into my life, held my heart when it otherwise would of broke. Sent blessing after blessing into my life, while allowing my trials to take their course. Allowed me to endure the hardships necessary to open my heart to the love this world provides. To open my eyes, mind, and soul to the beauty of the word and the promises of our Lord.
One day every decision will be understood, one day I'll know the whys. For now I'll pursue the what. Spend some more time on my knees and longer hours with my nose in the bible. Realizing there is a bigger plan, not one for my understanding because, after all, it isn't about me. Life is good. God is great.

Thursday, November 18, 2010


I wrote about things that were hard to deal with, things that effected the way I thought about things. I'm not going to lie. They hurt, each hurt bad.
Young calf's are branded on ranches across the world, the brand is put upon them to make easily identifiable. A mark that is with them forever snow, sleet, rain, mud, and element the worth throws at em won't wash it away. It hurts to be branded, but you know each of those calves get up and returns to their program, their purpose. The brand is there, its not forgotten but that calf isn't changed much. He just has a reminder of where he's come from. Now maybe, comparing myself to a calf isn't the most glamorous of visions - but it definitely describes how I feel.
Bad things have happened in my life, bad things have influenced my life, bad things do NOT define my life unless I give them that power. I'm not strong all the time and sometimes they do. But let me tell you, I'm fully stocked on big girl panties and have a good grip on my boot straps. Always have.
Why? Because the same people who may have hurt me once or twice, also showed me how to brush it off a hundred times. That it's not about being tough or not having my heart broken. It's about being fair, smart, and loving enough that my heart can break.
My Aunt, she was my idol growing up. I thought she was the coolest, smartest, most beautiful person in the world, I wanted to be like her. She broke my heart when she told my cousin to stop, that she would look like me. But, she also taught me the importance of forgiving the people that I love.  That everyone makes mistakes, that I would one day hurt someone too. That I should love as God does. I love her, always will. That's what family does, forgive and move on. My Aunt is cool and taught me to be bold with my hair, and cool with my clothes. I owe my fashion sense to her.
When I felt that my parents didn't see the same vision my dreams. (OK, there might of been a little bit of spoiled brat in that, but it hurt. I still want a pony)  I pursued new ones. I learned to dream bigger, broader, and vastly. I've experienced so much in my life, explored so many different desires. I've fought forest fires, rushed into burning buildings, patrolled a lake as  life guard, watched a person come back to life, surfed an ocean wave, scaled a rock wall, and piloted a horse over an oxford jump. I'm not done dreaming either. When life throws an obstacle up I find a way to scale it. A way to dream and pursue in whatever place I am in life. I love that about me. I'll take on whatever life throws at me, knowing with God's grace and the strengths he's given me I can take on anything. My parents supported each of those goals driving me to practice and showing up to graduations. (They have another one coming up in a couple years, as I pursue another goal - Master of Science in Counseling)
Family members didn't show up. Happens to so many. I learned that this world isn't about me. That bigger, badder wolves lurk in the shadows that I thank God I have not had to encounter. I know that so many in my family who struggle with addiction, so many in this world that struggle. I developed an empathetic heart. The ability to see the perspective of many, and realize that the demons of this world are fighting for a team I despise. I team I prayerfully hope will be eradicated soon, when our world is new again. These family members are more sober today than they have ever been, or were more sober when they passed away. They showed me that hurt and anger can rock you to your core, but you don't have to stay down, that any heart can fight the demons of this world. They showed me that there is a fighter in me and giving up is not an option.
My attitude is all about perspective. How I choose to let these experiences effect me. How I choose to let my heart be impacted. I choose to protect my heart. I choose to only let it acknowledge the truths now. No more lies. I choose to know that my family loves me, my God is great, and I am more than prepared to take on this world and pursue my purpose. So I'll take my brands, I'll cry out with the pain, then I'll return to my herd - my brothers and sisters in Christ; the ones who have shown me who I can be in life, and continue with my purpose.
Life is Good. God is great.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

I am NOT alone.

I have to be real, I have to be honest. I have been in my writings - today should be no different. But today, I may hurt the ones who love me the most - the ones I love the most. I will start this by saying my life is not awful. Human actions both mine and those in my life did not put into motion everything that has happened to me. Satan and his demons are at work in a world that our God was wonderful to create, and will surely restore. But the fact of the matter at hand now is, I'm hurt. I'm broken and I need to heal. I need to heal the little girl's heart who's Daddy or Grandfather didn't show up when he promised, I need to heal the young ladies self confidence that was broken when a trivial remark about her appearance scarred her forever, I need to address the pain that came from feeling like second best and that MY dreams weren't practical enough for a busy family, and I need to heal a young adults heart that was scarred, battered, and bruised in a world she chose to embrace and when she lost focus on what truly mattered most in her purpose in life.
My heart fails to recall a specific situation that my father or grandfather missed. I do remember waiting anxiously for their arrival - only to receive a phone call they wouldn't make it, or the event would pass and they would not of attended. I remember fearing to ask if they were coming - knowing that whatever the answer, the outcome was as predictable as the mega lotto.  I learned I wasn't important enough, loved enough, that I didn't fight enough to get these people to attend events. I learned that I would have to pursue other's involvement in my life if I didn't want to experience this world alone. I learned that just being me, just wasn't enough. I learned a lot of lies. I know now that bigger things than my birthday party were going on. Addictions, grief, and other personal struggles harden hearts and confused souls in the men who I loved so much in my life. But, as a little girl waiting for their arrival I learned that it was easy to be abandoned, so as an adult I chose to follow, pursue so I couldn't be abandoned. Or at least that has been the rational behind it. That rational doesn't work well.
Sixth grade, I stood in the living room of my Grandfather's home. The tv played in the background. My cousin sneezed, needed a tissue, and wiped her nose. I assume she pushed upwards as most toddlers do. "Stop doing that" I heard, "do you want to grow up and look like Jessica." I focused my attention on the tv, tears welled up in my eyes, and that day I learned of my nasal monstrosity and that I was in fact a beast, and if no one wanted to look like me - why would they like me?  At the pool, we had to rinse off before diving in for a summers day of splish splashing. I walked confidently to the showers in my two piece swimsuit, it was grey with neon stripes, my neighbor had one just like it.  Then the boys walked past "She's over there, near the fatter one, by the showers" That day I learned I was fat. That because of this no guy would pursue me, I would merely be a landmark to guide them elsewhere.
I never felt more empowered, more at peace than on the back of a horse. I felt the connection of my soul to this powerful animal. That we could work together and achieve a goal. Another living, breathing, beast that liked me whether or not I had an apple in my pocket. That night, I got to ride FoxyLady our instructors daughter's horse. She was a beautiful bay/Appaloosa, a cross between a quarterhorse and arabian. She cantered smoothly and easily sored over jumps. I was honored to be offered the opportunity. I probably had fifteen minutes left in my lesson. My feet had just found the irons on the stirrups,  when I heard my brother run down the driveway. He had a ball game. In a league that my Mom often volunteered and my dad was president of. I had to go, his game was the priority. I walked away. I learned my dream was impractical, not in line with my families lifestyle. I told my Mom I wanted to quit. My dreams, didn't matter.
I wanted to be noticed, to be prided upon by family, friends, and society. I took big dreams, made big moves, and did big things. I also experienced big hurts. My life became a check off sheet. I had to fulfill a, b, and c. Or I would never be "enough."  Halfway through "c," I forgot what "a" was and already planning "h." Time after time, after time. I tried to fulfill a void in my heart. I filled it with work, with school, with sex, with bad relationships, with food, and with gluttony. I saw green pastures all around while I sat in tumbleweeds. I would plan my escape over the next white clapboard fence only to find the grass wasn't as green, not when the shadow of all things on this world blocked the sun from shining as I carried the burdens of the world on my shoulders, not trusting God with the hurt that prodded me into that field.
I'm hurt, I'm broken. I see the cracks in my foundation. But I also see something that was built so strongly upon the unbroken structure. Somewhere along the way friends showed me I was worth it. That there were people who would pursue a relationship. Who took me just as I was.  Along the beaten path family pointed out my boot straps and taught me that my dreams don't have to matter to anyone else, after all I was the one who was going to achieve them. Someone told me I was beautiful, and I genuinely believed them. Then finally, someone woke me up and I began to see there was a bigger purpose.
How I have  LONGED to be pursued, feel beautiful, feel irreplaceable in the life of someone, and live my life according to God's purpose. It's only recently that I realized I have all those things. They are in me, but there is rubble in front of doors, and stair wells filled with smoke blocking it's entrance into this world. Hurts and trials I have kept inside to only block what I seek the most.  I am of this world, prayerfully searching to discover my purpose to be less of this world and more of God's obedient child. What promises we have in the sovereignty of the Lord! What a wonderful God to tell ME that I matter to him, the God who knows all the fish in the sea, knows how many hairs I have on my head. God wants me to love HIM, as he loves me. God created me, a woman when the earth was new and an element was missing. Created ME to fulfill his plan in this world.  God has given me a beauty, not one found in magazines or television. A beauty inside of me to radiate his love to the world.
So here I am, in this world -  a world becoming over run by Satan and demons. Here I am with all I ever need, yet feeling so empty at times. Here I am God. Asking you to take my life, take my soul, open my eyes to my purpose, to the love you have placed in my life with irreplaceable family and friends, to light a fire in my heart to pursue you, to show the world the beauty you placed in me. I know it's all there.
Life is good. God is great.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Let me, be real

So typically, in the past I've marked new milestones and desires to change inside,  by changing my outward appearance. So often, when my hair color, make up, even change in attire would verge from it's usual course - an eye brow of a friend or my Mom would surely raise. Wondering what I was up to this go around. I can't deny, it's true. It's my "thing" just happens.
Today though, I think my choice was more significant. I went from a very bold (and really not "me") platinum blonde to what I thought was going to be "just brown." Why? I wanted ME back. I wanted that 19 year old girl who felt like she could do anything, who feared less and did more, I wanted to be true to ME again. More so, I wanted to be true to the world, symbolizing that what comes out of my mouth, what radiates from my actions, and what comes from my purpose is true, most importantly that it is genuine. Getting my hair back to "normal" symbolized that for me. It was taking off a mask, one I donned to escape the transition between my realities. No more fronts, take it or leave it here I am.
In prayer I search for what my purpose is, I attempt to go boldly and confidently where he wants me. It's scary as HECK, for so long I've trusted things a lot less worthy than such a wonderful God. I've gone from who "Me" is supposed to be to me and people of this world, to getting closer to who God intended. I'm beginning to look in the mirror and see God's grace and a woman who has been blessed so much in the life. A lady who God thought enough of to take into his arms and comforted  in painful times, healing my wounds, pacifying the ache in my heart, placing the will in my heart to share him, to serve him in a capacity I never thought I would be a tool in.
I have scars, I have deep deep wounds. I have still yet to escape the binds of Eve to Eden,  I crave that forbidden fruit. I am still slightly convinced that God is holding out, that the sweetest apple is the one just out of my reach.  But I'm working on it. Working on accepting that this place, right now is where I'm intended to be. That when I truly pray, pour into God's word, and take a moment to listen that I can confidently pick fruit and harvest from the trees rightfully provided to me, turn my back to the enticing and convincing words of the snake telling me there is so much more to THIS world, when my heart is being more and more convicted to a better one. So it's hard to be real, to be true to the God that I truly believe offers me the possibility of eternal salvation. But, I'm trying - for the first time in my life I'm being real, laying it out there, healing, growing, and taking the steps to serving an awesome God - mind, body, and spirit.
Life is Good, God is great.

Monday, November 8, 2010

My Prayer

Today, was rough. Thinking about things I hadn't thought of in a long time, if ever. Driving home from work I prayed that God just show me that Makenna was okay.  That in those last minutes she didn't feel pain, that she just continued her dance in heaven. That heaven was truly as magnificent - hopefully more so than I could ever imagine.
Then, he showed me. Not in some get reveal of a show choir of angelic host, a shooting star, or even a rainbow in the distance. No, he opened my eyes to what was in front of me. Mountains to my right, huge clouds from a recent storm in the distance, a brisk fall like breeze, and the crazy lady in the car next to me rocking out in what obviously should of been the hit of the century. I had to smile. Had to see how truly amazing this world is. The miracle of everything just working - sometimes dysfunctional, but working. If he could make THIS world so spectacular, to bless so many in a world ruled by Satan, then surely, SURELY Makenna was safe in his arms that morning, that she is experiencing incredible happiness waiting for THIS world to be new again.
How truly amazing is it that it rains? that babies are born? that I have survived numerous trips up and down stairs without breaking my neck? How truly amazing is it, that there is a God who has the grace to forgive - yet hold accountable. Who's influences makes me to be a better member of society and also grants me the chance at eternal life. The opportunity to dance and laugh with my babies for ever?
When I prayed for a sign, I didn't expect to get it from the blonde chick rocking out to - well, whatever she was rocking out too. But that's where I saw it. That's where I realized that there is NO way it's just "happenstance" things happen in our world, that indeed promises are true. It made my heart lighter, my conviction stronger, and just a bit more strength to get through the next minute, hour, day, year...whatever God has planned for me.
The realization that this IS my new reality, and I don't have to rely on my strength, I get to find comfort in God's grace.
Life is good. God is great.

Saturday, November 6, 2010


I'd like to say I enjoy being busy - but it may not be entirely true. I enjoy having stress. Crazy huh? Stress doesn't have to be bad, there are good stresses, but either way I crave it seek it out. Put entirely too much on my plate and end up doing a lot , half way.
It's where I hide, hide from my thoughts and fears, its a culmination of my indulgences that I seek to be everything to everyone. I'm struggling.
So what am I hiding from? Reality - my new reality. The reality that I've fooled so many into thinking I'm taking head on, when in fact I'm running like a maniac, hands over my head, screaming like a girl.  I've read that you find light sooner chasing the darkness, than chasing the light. Instead of giving up my trials to God, I'd given up. Not allowed him to work in my life, and pursued the hear and now to distract me from things I could not control, and wouldn't let anyone else have control over. Taking that leap is terrifying
I feel like I'm on the 20 foot platform with my toes over the edge, looking at the pool below.  Knowing I have to tools to succeed, but knowing there is so much out of my control. That is NOT a venue I thrive in. So instead of taking control, I turn around and prepare more. Make more list, make more dreams, pursue something that's close - but not just quite. Sometimes I go back and nail it, other times i do a belly flop, then other times I back down, pursuing the next on my list. 
I've come to the realization that if I do give it up to God he will provide. He's already providing. Unconditional love, Agape. How amazing is that. I may endure horrid things in life, I may accept it's God's plan. I struggle allowing him to show me through it and trusting that he loves me like no one here on earth ever could. So now, I work on trust. That I'm made to be me, and I'm good enough for any situation I'm put in because God loves me. I want to radiate that.
Life is good. God is great.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Crossing Jordan

So, it went something like this:
God: Joshua get those Guys to follow that box, don't let em touch it, get them follow it where ever it goes. Just because I said it.
Josh: ummm sure, why not:?
God: Let em know that  I got the people in the promised land on the run, they are FREAKED that you guys are coming
Josh:Good deal, making this whole leadership an easy gig considering you're working through me
God: Oh, one more thing, when you get to the river just keep walking, I'm gonna hold it back so you can cross right through.Then when you cross gather up some stones and make a monument, let people know that you're God is an awesome God.
Josh: say whhhhat?
God: Hey Josh, don't sweat it. I'll be with you just as I was with Moses. I got your back.
Josh: sweet deal.
I'll admit, for me there was no CHOICE in getting into the riverbed. It defitnitely wasn't the path I would of taken. I kinda feel like I was tossed into the middle of the Jordan to only then realize that God can and will hold back obstacles, even if he's throwing you in a direction you didn't really know you needed to be going. I still wonder what the other side of the Jordan would be like today the side I came from, I was safe there - not nearly content or really happy, but there were things over there that I really loved, things that I know now were temporary and just part of this world, a world that won't last forever - thank GOD, because as Pastor Matt says if Disneyland is the happiest place on earth, well...I'm ready for heaven. (disclaimer, yes I love visiting Disney but let's face it lines suck!)
In the last few months, I feel like I've been drug through the mud of that riverbed.( I mean in reality, had I actually been on of those to follow the covenant and cross the River Jordan I probably would of tripped at some point and got a face full of mud) It's not cool to be drug through mud, however, in reality I realize that the torrent of the flood waters that could of come would of been much much much worse had I not had the Grace of God and had he not provided me a promise that I hold SO dear to my heart. I could of drowned in my own raging river of grief, loss, and change but I was provided with the courage, sticktoitiveness, friendship, family, love, and grace I needed to find my boot straps and big girl panties and really LIVE in a time I could of just died.
The last few weeks have stung, the reality of the permanence of my life change is sinking in. Never in my life, did I think this year would be part of it's story, but now I can't imagine who I would be without it. I'm discovering my purpose and my worth in a whole new light. Embracing that God made ME the perfect ME, and striving to achieve the purpose he has set for my life.  So now, I feel like Im nearing the bank of this river, to get closer to the land that God has promised me. Who know's if there will be more rivers, more lands to be moved to - only God does. What I DO know is I'm ready to take this land. To serve a great God who has amazing plans. A God who loves his people SO much he forgives them for sins and takes them as his own, so that death doesn't end us, but provides us with a blissful  new beginning.
Tonight, I pray that I learn to love God more than I love this world. To trust HIS plan for my life and be silenced enough to hear when he speaks. I pray that God's love radiates from me in the days to come, and I can be the vessel that shines on just one lost soul. I am SO thankful for having all I need, and so much of what I want. I am blessed.
Life is good. God is great.