My hope is that this blog will be a conduit for conversation between you and me, between you and others, and most importantly, between you and God. Experience has shown me that my best conversations with the Lord and with others come coupled with the stillness of morning and a cup of coffee. Whatever your experience has been, I hope you will join me as I share what God puts on my heart.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

In Your light we see light.

I do not want you to feel trapped—trapped between what you are doing now and what you need to do tomorrow.  I do not want you to be trapped in a seemingly purposeless or bad experience.  Because that trap will always exist.  There is always going to be somethingSomething to do.  Something to be down about.

We must learn to live above that something.

We live above the something by asking God to take hold of that something.  We live above that something by acknowledging that God will use that something—even if that something is the most mundane, meaningless, or negative something.  We live above the something by communing with God.  When we commune with God, God is our context.  And that something gains meaning because that something becomes a conduit for God’s glory. 

And suddenly, that something is a vessel for God.  Every event, every duty, every action of ours is a conduit for God.

God gives us meaning.  God gives us purpose.  God cloaks everything we do with meaning.  Even the most meaningless obligations, the most meaningless occurrences in our lives can breathe hallelujahs to our Lord.

And the joyous life Christ calls us to is realized.  Endless worship to God breeds joy.  Even when I am disengaged in the task.  Even when the task will not matter a year from now.  Even when I do not understand why this event has occurred.  Even when I do not see how this insignificant occurrence can be purposeful.  Even when nobody will notice the task.  Even when I could care less about my responsibilities.  

God is our light.  God is light within you.  And God brings light to everything you do.  You are doing what God created you to do.  You are doing life—no matter how insignificant—in the context of pursuing God.  And, God is glorified.

Then, it is not the bad circumstance, it is not the purposeless occurrence, it is not the mundane obligation that glorifies God.  You are what glorifies God.

Even when we are not consciously speaking praise to God, our endless pursuit of God glorifies Him. 

How humbling that our Lord and King uses our useless life motions as His throne.  I have every reason to smile.  I have every reason to be inspired.  And so do you. 

Thank You, God, for giving our lives meaning.  Thank You, God, that every exhalation can bring praise to You. 

“For with You is the fountain of life; In your light we see light.”  (Psalm 36:9 NKJV).

“And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men.”  (Colossians 3:23 NKJV).

“My mouth is filled with your praise, declaring your splendor all day long.”  (Psalm 71:8 NIV).

Why, yes, that is a pink lipstick stain on my cuppa coffee.  It's called marking your territory.  

Much love to you,


Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Only He will release my feet from the snare.

We spend much of our lives barely skimping by.  We hang by a thread.  We speed, we sprint, and we run from one thing to the next.  And we are relieved when we complete one task—but only for a moment, for the next urgent task awaits us.  And we cannot give an inch because we do not have an inch.   

And this is a snare.

The season of Lent is very much about removing that which distracts us from God.  Lent is a reminder that there is a relationship between our schedule and our relationship with Christ.

I am convinced that God has not called us to a schedule that is busting at the seams.  God has called us to an abundant life.  Abundance is life in God.  God has taught me that abundance is tied to my decisions about time. We have experienced periods of famine, where we have very little time to spare.  But, God has given us the ability to make feast-giving choices.  Choices that give us more than enough.  Feast-giving choices are choices that give us margin in our schedule.  Margin gives us room to be moved by our Lord.

The more freedom I have, the more willing I am to spend time with God.  The more freedom I have, the more attentive I am to God.  The more freedom I have, the more flexibility I have to respond to God. 

I have freedom because I will choose margin.  And you can choose margin too.

Saying yes to God often means saying no to whatever else demands our freedom.  And that whatever else that demands our freedom may be an inherently good activity, goal, decision, or commitment.  But, if it is sucking the flexibility from your life; if it is suffocating the passion that is reserved for God, then it is hindering your freedom in Christ.  Your freedom in Christ is tied to the freedom in your schedule.  Freedom in your schedule gives you the ability to respond to what God has for you at the moment God moves.

And I am not urging you to be extreme; I am urging you to take your schedule to God.  Creating margin means eliminating that which pushes us not just over the edge, but to the edge.  Do not merely cut your schedule back to the edge; cut your schedule before the edge.  We were created to have space between our commitments and our threshold. 

Let us reserve that space for our Lord.

During this Lent season, I pray we learn to say no.  Praise God that He will show us where He wants us to say no.  By saying no, we gain margin.  By gaining margin, we gain the flexibility to be moved by God. 

“My eyes are ever on the Lord, for only he will release my feet from the snare.”  (Psalm 25:15 NIV).

“You have seen many things, but you pay no attention; your ears are open, but you do not listen.”  (Isaiah 42:20 NIV).

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”  (John 10:10 NIV).

I have purposefully delayed the introduction of my favorite latte to you.  I was not sure if you could handle it.  I am still not sure.  It is with great caution that I present to you a large, sugar-free, caramel-royale latte, with half the pumps of usual syrup, 2% milk, no foam, no whip, extra-hot. 

I'm that girl.

Don't be that girl.

Much love to you,


Tuesday, February 14, 2012

In the morning.

A few weeks ago, I spoke with my dear friend Margaret.  Margaret is 91 years old.  Margaret remarked that prayer is a gift.  And her comment has resonated within me since.  How humbling that our Lord, the maker of heaven and earth, delights in communicating with us. 

Prayer comes more easily on certain days.  Maybe it is the stressful days.  The days I am down.  The days I am at my threshold.  Or maybe it is the days that everything is going well.  The days when it is easiest to talk to God because I am happy with God. 

But, one thing is certain: my communication with the Lord is most constant on the days that I deliberately open my day with prayer.  For me, this means talking to the Lord as I get out of bed.  It may sound menial, but those good-morning-God-I’m-tired-today prayers open the channel of communication between me and God for the rest of the day.  The earlier in the day I open up the prayer channel, the easier the prayer channel is to open. 

You cannot expect to perpetuate an attitude of prayer if you do not initiate an attitude of prayer.

We must deliberately begin communication with the Lord before our day gets away from us.  Soon enough, our burdens and our distractions will beckon us.  If burdens pursue me before I pursue God, pursuing God becomes that much harder.  When I pursue God before my burdens pursue me, burdens bend my heart toward God.  

This may seem obvious and elementary, but I quickly forget it—and perhaps you forget it too.  There is a direct relationship between how early in the day we seek the Lord and how much we seek the Lord throughout the day.  It is not necessarily the quantity of time that is essential; it is the openness to God that is essential.  And talking with God makes us open to God.  And being open to God means we are communing with God.

I want to share this with you because I rue the days that I fall into bed and realize I have missed the voice of my Lord or the communion with Him throughout the day.  It is not that I spend my days making these heart-felt, emotional petitions to God all day long.  While I certainly have those desperate days, I want to experience constant communication with my Lord that is not solely premised on my circumstances.  I am convinced that our Lord is blessed by our desire to commune with him regardless of the reason.  But it is the attitude of a heart open to communication with God throughout the day that blesses us

From the moment we arise, we must clothe ourselves with this openness to God.  And we clothe ourselves with openness to God by seeking God in prayer. 

I pray you experience this consistent, uninterrupted communication with our Lord.  I encourage you to be deliberate in opening your communication channel with God in the morning—whenever your morning may be.  Praise God that He listens to us.  Praise God that He uses our prayers to Him to bless us.

“May my prayer be set before you like incense; may the lifting up of my hands be like the evening sacrifice.”  (Psalm 141:2 NIV).

“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”  (1 Thessalonians 4:16-18 NIV).

“All night long I search for you; in the morning I earnestly seek for God.”  (Isaiah 26:9 NLT).     


Happy Valentine's Day to you.  Today, be good to yourself.  Ten cups of coffee later, I have certainly been good to myself.  It's not my fault; this cup beckons me to drink from it. 

Much love to you,


Friday, February 10, 2012


Sometimes life is a chore.  Sometimes everything we touch breaks.  Sometimes acts of discipline do not come as easily as they usually do.  Sometimes we repeatedly fail.

And I want you to know that is okay.

During these time—and at all times—we must see ourselves as the Lord sees us.  We must be aware of who we are in Christ.  In the flourishing times, this may require humility to recognize it is Christ.  In the straining times, this may require confidence to still believe that it is Christ.  But in both times and for all time, it is Christ because that is who God sees when God looks at us.

For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.

Christ defines our perception of ourselves.  And that perception is not so challenging when everything is going well.  But even when I feel far from God, or I am on the verge of cracking, I continue to see God’s loving-kindness.  It is often subtle but no less present.  It is often gentle but no less powerful.  And when you see God’s loving-kindness amidst your miry situation, you will remember God’s perception of you. 

And God’s perception of you is Christ. 

But even before God’s perception of you was Christ, He loved you no less.  And suddenly when we become gripped with God’s perception of us, the mistakes we just made; the flaws we notice; the uncertainty we feel; the disdain we experience for our weaknesses are placed in the context of Christ.  And in the context of Christ, our flaws become secondary because we know our Lord is not finished with us yet.  And the Christ that God sees in me is exactly who I am becoming—exactly who you are becoming. 

Our Lord is our grace.   And because our Lord does not change, the truth that our Lord is perfection for us will not change.

Throw off your disappointment in yourself.  Stop relying on yourself to live a life that you cannot—it is only through Christ living in you that you can.  We are disappointed because we rely on ourselves.  God has freed you from that shackle. 

Trust, trust, trust that it is God working in you.  Trust that it is Christ that God sees in you.  Trust that God is not finished with you yet.     

Praise God that we are free.  I pray you release the burden of becoming who Christ called you to be because that burden rests with God.  Praise God that we are hidden in Christ, and that God is responsible for completing that work in us. 

“For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.”  (Colossians 3:3 NIV).

“[B]eing confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”  (Philippians 1:6 NIV).

“And if by grace, then it cannot be based on works; if it were, grace would no longer be grace.”  (Romans 11:6 NIV).


Please forgive me.  I have absolutely discriminated against non-coffee drinkers.   My peace offering is hot chocolate with sweet, sweet succulent marshmallow hearts.  No matter how weak I think you are for drinking hot chocolate, you are no less my Valentine.

Much love to you,


Friday, February 3, 2012

Taste and see.

There have been times in life when I am wholly consumed with what I should be doing.  I strain and I strain in an attempt to be exactly where God wants me.  I dissect every detail hoping that I have not missed God or that my heart is right.  And in analyzing every facet of my relationship with our Lord, I forget to enjoy our Lord.  Perhaps you do this too.

Our God is good.  Our God is so very good. 

And I cannot help but smile as I write this because even when I do not feel God’s goodness, I cannot deny it.  And you cannot deny it.

God has called us to an abundant life in Him.  That life to which our Lord has called us is only abundant because our God is abundance.  I cannot deny that the more I rest in our Lord, the more apparent our Lord’s goodness and the more abundant my life.  But, this requires that we take time to enjoy God.

Our relationship with God easily becomes a chore.  We quickly forget how lovely the God that we serve.  While our relationship with God is not solely based on emotion, we can enjoy God despite our emotions because our enjoyment is premised on God’s goodness.  God’s goodness is unchanging. 

We are not called to stand by and passively adopt the truth that God is good.  We are called to taste and see; we are called to experience God’s goodness.  And we experience that God is good when we enjoy our God.  And by enjoyment, I mean taking pleasure in God.  And how you enjoy God is distinct to you.  For some, this may mean resting in God.  For others, this may mean praising God.  Our God is certainly good whether we take time to enjoy Him, but taking time to enjoy our God reminds us of why our God is good.

Let us enjoy our Lord.  Let us stop struggling step after step to get to where we think we should be.  Our Lord is good, and our Lord is kind.  And I know I am being redundant, but it is too important to leave unaddressed.

If you do not stop straining, you will not enjoy His goodness.  And if you do not enjoy the goodness of our Lord, you will continue straining.  Because until you appreciate the goodness of our Lord, you will perpetually be dragged down by an oppressive perception of God that a limited reality from this broken world creates.  You must go to God to experience the full reality of His goodness; you must go to God to be released from the yoke you have placed on yourself.  We too easily forget.  And we wonder why so many walk around unexcited about our Lord.

We must taste and see.

I am concerned that you are burdened because you have bridled yourself with duties devoid of joy in Christ.  One who fails to enjoy our Lord will easily forget the joy that comes with serving a good God. This is not the life to which Christ has called you.  

For me, I enjoy the Lord when I praise Him.  I enjoy the Lord when I make it only about our Lord and not about me clawing at my flaws or requesting something of God.  While there is certainly a time for conviction and a time for petition, thanking God reminds me of His goodness in my life.  As of late, Psalm 34 has expressed my joy in God that my heart could not articulate. 

I pray you find your Psalm 34.  I pray you enjoy our Lord.  Rest in Him.  Delight in His presence.  Be filled with His joy.  Relish the security.  Praise God that He is the abundance to which we are called.

“Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.”  (Psalm 34:8 NIV).

“I will extol the Lord at all times; his praise will always be on my lips.”  (Psalm 34:1 NIV).

“They celebrate your abundant goodness and joyfully sing of your righteousness.  The Lord is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love.  The Lord is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made.”  (Psalm 14:7-9 NIV).

“I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.  Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.”  (Psalm 27:13, 14 NIV).

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”  (Romans 8:28 NIV).

Hello, Valentine.  February is my favorite. 

Much love to you,