Here I Am

Because I can still remember all the prayers I thought you forgot.

The nights I spent crying.

Asking you what I did to deserve any of this.

Because I was miserable. I was lonely. And because I felt forgotten.

But then here I am.

And I am only here because of You.

Because you pursued me.

And you brought me even closer to you.

This entire time. There you were. Right beside me.

Loving.

Pursuing.

Even when I messed up.

When I gave up trusting you.

When I was convinced my way was better.

When I thought you had better things to do.

When I was too ashamed to talk to you.

There you were.

Loving.

Pursuing.

Because you knew better.

You knew this place.

You knew him.

And you knew that he was exactly what I needed.

Because you heard every prayer.

Because you caught every tear.

And because you knew exactly what I deserved- even better than I did.

Because you always keep your promises.

Because you’re still not done.

And because you’re still at it.

Loving.

Pursuing.

Lord, thank you. Thank you for all of this. For this life you have created for me. For him. Lord, you are so good. Help me to trust more. To be reminded of how good You are everyday. Even in this world of brokenness and hurt. You are still good. And we can put our hope in you. Lord, thank you for loving me and pursuing me even when I begged you to just leave me alone. You are so good, Lord. Lord, thank you for being such a good father to me. Help me to grow into Your ways, Lord. Give me a new heart.Help me to trust you, Lord. Without ceasing. But mostly, Lord, thank you. Just thank you. In Your Name I pray. Amen.

Come Holy Spirit, come.

Change my heart.

Give me a heart that desires the things you do.

That loves without borders.

Align my heart to yours.

Change me into the woman you desire me to be.

Lord, help me to seek your will above my own.

And cleanse me of anything that breaks your heart.

I pray these things in Your name for Your honor and glory.

Amen.

Amen

Lord, thank you. 

Thank you for this man. This amazing and perfect man. This man I never realized existed. 

This man who changed everything. 

Lord, thank you. 

Thank you for sending me a man who loves You more than he loves himself. A man who knows You. A man who fears You. A man who isn’t afraid to talk about You.

Lord, thank you. 

Lord, bless this man. Bless this relationship. And bless this family. 

Lord, help us to live a life that brings honor and glory to Your name. 

Lord, fill us with your Holy Spirit so that we may walk in Your ways.

Lord, thank you for guiding us when we don’t know the way. For forgiving us when we fall short. And for loving us in a way that allows us to love each other. 

I pray that no matter where we find ourselves down the road, that our eyes will always be fixed on you, Lord. 

Hand in hand, I pray we will always seek you, together. 

I pray these things in Your name. For Your honor and glory. 

Amen. 

With You

I will not make this tragedy about me. 

I will not make it about my beliefs. 

I will not make it my platform to take my stance. 

Because I think that’s the problem. 

The sense of self. 

This pride and sense of entitlement to be right. 

To be heard. 

To be sure that everyone knows how we feel. 

So instead, I’m going to think about you. 

I’m going to let my heart break with you. 

I’m going to get angry with you and not at you. 

Because I will not make this tragedy about me. 

But I will use it as an opportunity to stand with you. 

Familiar 

No one can serve two masters, since either he will hate one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money. Matthew 6:24

I cannot tell you how many times I’ve read that verse. 

Let’s just say that I read it enough where I thought I understood it enough to just glance at it when it would come up. 

Except that’s just one of the amazing things about God’s word. It’s never the same each time we read it. 

We can read the same verse over and over and somehow, we still have this amazing gift to take something different from it each time. 

This is why His word never fails. 

So, yeah, okay, can’t serve God and money, got it. 

Except that I didn’t. I don’t. 

I have this amazing ability to turn anything into a little God. 

Anything. 

From my family to my job to my prayers. 

I can even turn my coffee into a little God every morning if I’m not careful. 

So as I read this verse again, I replaced ‘money’ with all those other things, but something still wasn’t right. 

And then it hit me.

You cannot serve both God and yourself.

It hit me straight in the gut and took my breath away.

It was never my intention to compete with God. But that’s exactly what I had been doing. 

It was never any of those other things. 

It was me. 

It was thinking I knew better than He did. 

It was thinking I was more resourceful than He was. 

It was thinking that I was exactly where I was in life because of what I did to get there. 

Gross, right? 

Because I don’t know about you, but every time I have tried to do something on my own either one of two things happen: 1. I fall on my face. 2. I make a bigger mess than necessary. 

Oh, and there is one more thing: I always come back to Him. 

Have I truly been a disciple of Christ? I can’t help but wonder. 

Oh man, do I love Him. I love Him so much it hurts. 

But do I love myself more? 

What a conviction it is to ask yourself that very question. 

I was hoping to finish this blog and shout from my bed that I loved Him the most. 

But as I sit here, comforted by this hot cup of coffee, I’m not sure I can say that with an honest heart. 

So instead, I’m quietly asking the Holy Spirit to come into this broken heart and to make some changes. 

Reluctantly, I am asking the Holy Spirit to come into my broken heart.

Because this is terrifying. 

Dying to one’s self? 

Choosing to trust in something you can’t even see? 

Laying down all the things that bring me satisfaction and joy? 

I wish I could say it was easier, but it’s not. And I can feel myself clinging on to those fleeting things. 

Because for so long, even when I wasn’t acknowledging it, for so long it was up to me. At least, that’s how I looked at it. 

That’s what we’re conditioned to do, right?

We grow up with the idea that if we want something we have to work for it. 

That our best choices have gotten us to where we are. 

And that if we aren’t happy with something we have the power to change it. 

But what if that goes against everything that He is?

What if by believing those things we are giving ourselves too much credit and taking away from what He has done for us? 

I hope you weren’t expecting an answer. 

Because I’m drawing a blank. 

And maybe this is His lesson. The thing that’s happening right now. The not knowing. 

Maybe this is Him proving a point. Making His case. 

Maybe, He brings us into the familiar just to show us how unfamiliar it actually is. 

And how much, despite what we may think, we actually need Him.

 

You Can Be

So recently I’ve been living or trying to live (verdict is still out on that) in a season of contentment. 

God has really put it on my heart that despite my best efforts this is where I am supposed to be, doing what I’m supposed to be doing. 

I can stop trying to run. 

I can finally stop and catch my breath. 

As a single mother I am constantly thinking about money. Maybe that’s an unfair assessment? Maybe we’re all thinking about money.

I know I am. 

Always.

Whether I have enough. If I will have enough. How I wish I had more. What I would do with more if I had it. 

You get the picture.

Yesterday I found myself praying. 

My bank account had only $20 in it and payday was a long ways away. 

So I prayed. 

I prayed that I would get to a place financially where I didn’t have to worry. 

I even threw out a specific amount, you know, just in case He wasn’t sure. ;)

But before I could even say ‘amen’ I knew I was wrong. 

I was completely wrong in that prayer. 

He could answer it. I have no doubt that He could provide the exact dollar amount per my request. But it wasn’t really about the money. 

‘You can be…’ He answered.

I retraced my words wondering what He was talking about.

‘You can be…’ He repeated.

And He was right. 

I could be. 

I didn’t have to worry. 

Even with only $20 in my bank account and payday a long ways away. I didn’t have to worry. 

Because I can be in that place despite the size of my paycheck. 

Because I can be in that place by choosing to trust Him.

Because at the end of the day it comes down to me and where I put my faith. 

The truth is, instead of praying for more money, I need to change my prayer. 

What I need besides a bigger paycheck is a complete change in heart. 

A change in the way I look at money.

A change in the way I handle my money. 

Because, let’s be honest, I’ll never have ‘enough’. 

No one can serve two masters, since either he will hate one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money. Matthew 6:24

But the truth is that I already do. 

I already have more than enough.

I have so much because of what Jesus chose to do for me on the cross when He gave up His perfect life for my messy, broken, imperfect life. 

And so do you. 

More than any dollar amount we could ever want. 

Lord, thank you. Thank you for sending your only son to take my place on that cross. Thank you for always giving me enough. Even when I don’t deserve it. Lord, change my heart. Help me to be content despite my circumstances. Despite the size of my paycheck or the size of my bank account. Remind me always that you are enough. You are all I need. And help to make you all I want. I pray these things in your name. For your honor and glory. Amen. 

Just the Two of Us

So here we are. Just the two of us, again. 

You know, you’re setting a pretty impossible bar. 

Because even the good ones fall short. 

You did that. 

You made me realize just how much I deserve. How much I shouldn’t settle. And just how much I have settled in the past. 

I wish I could tell you that I’m getting more comfortable with the lonliness, but I’m not.

I wish I could tell you that I’m not sitting here wondering what the heck is wrong with me, but I can’t. 

But mostly I just wish that you could be here so I could feel a little less lonely. 

So help me. 

Help me to find contentment in this season. 

Because it’s hard not to compare. Especially when it’s so quiet here. 

It’s hard not to want what ‘they’ have. 

Because the enemy is desperate to convince me that I don’t belong. 

So that’s why I need your help. 

Help me to appreciate this season. 

Help me to feel your presence. 

Help me to remember that I am not alone, not really. 

Help me to shift my focus to all the amazing things I have in my life. 

Help me to have a heart of gratitude. 

Help me to love this life just as you intended. 

Because it’s not about me. Nope. It’s about you. 

You should probably remind me of that too. A lot. 

Give me the knowledge of your will and the strength to carry that out. 

I’m putting a lot of emphasis on that last part. 

Because that’s where you really come in. 

(Because I don’t know if you know this, but I kind of like doing things my way.)

So, here goes nothing, right? 

Because here we are. Just the two of us, again. 

All Wrong

Y’all, I think I’ve been doing it all wrong. 

Let me start off by asking you the same question someone asked me. 

“Why do you go to church on Sunday morning?” 

I didn’t even have to think about the answer. 

I go because it’s what I do. I go because of how I feel when I’m there. I go because I want my kids to be raised in a church. 

And sure, there’s nothing really wrong with those answers, but there is something missing from those answers. 

Let me ask you another question.

“Why do you read the Bible?”

To comfort myself. To educate myself. To find answers. 

Again, nothing wrong with those answers and yet, they are still missing something. 

Y’all, I’ve been doing it all wrong. 

Because this whole time I’ve made it about myself. 

What can God do for me? 

I never really thought of it like that. I thought I was doing right by reading the Bible and going to church every Sunday. 

You know me, dotting my i’s and crossing my t’s. 

But the truth is, it should never be about me. 

It should be about Him. 

Yes, the beautiful thing about Him is that when we honor Him and we praise Him, it does something for us too. It gives us that warm, fuzzy feeling that so many of us long for. But it isn’t about that feeling. 

It’s about Him.

I have been to church for answers. For when I’m having a bad week, a bad day, a bad morning. You name it. I go and I try to make myself feel better.

What can you do for me? 

When I’m struggling in life, as a single mother, with finances, relationships, you name it. I flip open my Bible and I try to make myself feel better. 

But, it isn’t about me. 

Whether I’m happy or sad or stressed or not, it isn’t about me. 

It should be about Him. 

I should be praising Him and worshiping Him despite what my personal life looks like. 

It should never be about what He can do for me, but rather, what I can do for Him. 

Now, in the grand scheme of things I realize I really can’t do much for Him. Truth be told, He doesn’t need me. But thankfully, He doesn’t expect much.

And instead of showing up on Sunday mornings for me, I can show up for Him. 

I can stop worrying about what He can do for me and I can just show up for Him. 

I can love Him. 

I can love Him with my whole heart.

Instead of opening up my Bible to answer all the questions I have to the unfairness of life, I can just be grateful for His living word.

I can just spend time with Him. 

Now, I’m not saying we can’t pray. Or that we shouldn’t pray. I firmly believe that in order to be in a relationship with God, we need to be able to talk to Him. 

And I don’t know about you, but my life would be even more of a wreck if I wasn’t able to pray to Him.

But instead of focusing on the prayer. Instead of focusing on the desired outcome of the specific prayer. Perhaps, I could focus on the action. 

The very blessing that it is to be able to go to Him in prayer. (Thank you Jesus)

Truth be told, I can find myself off track, a lot. 

Desiring my will instead of His.

I’m there right now. 

Boldly praying for Him to do things my way. 

But I think I have it all wrong. 

The bold part is not asking Him to do things my way, it’s being able to talk to Him at all. 

Because it’s not about me. It’s about Him. 

Because, y’all. I’ve been doing it all wrong. 

It was never actually about me. That’s the sin and the brokenness in our world. That’s the reminder that I desperately need Him in all things. 

Even in these kinds of things. 

Because I mess up. 

Because even when it’s about Him, I make it about me. 

Lord, help me to make it about you. 


Enough. 

Seek peace and pursue it. (Psalm 34:14)

Every so often, as I am spending time in God’s word do I stop and go, ‘That. That’s what He wants me to write about.’ 

I read it over and over. 

Seek peace and pursue it. 

At first, I was convinced it had to do with my life. What had been going on. 

Life was crazy. Things happened. I had been running away for a long time. Too scared to come back. Too scared to look Him in the eye.

So surely, this is what He was laying on my heart. This. Finding peace within myself. Peace through Him. Peace from this small town that I didn’t always care for. 

And maybe I was sort of right. 

But that wasn’t it. I didn’t feel the words flying out of my fingertips the way they do when He gives me the words. 

And then it happened. 

It has covered my facebook feed. Twitter has been going crazy. It’s on the news. It’s on the streets. It’s in the eyes of my dearest friends. 

And it has been something that I didn’t even have the slightest clue was happening. 

It was because of my privilege that I was clueless. Oh, the irony. 

Brothers and sisters, I am talking to you. 

Church, I am talking to you.

But mostly, I am talking to myself.

Seek peace and pursue it. 

Because there should be no reason for this mess we’ve gotten ourselves in. 

Because there should be no reason why someone is hated because of their skin color. 

Because we shouldn’t even be seeing skin color.

Because we are all His children. 

Because we are all made in His image.

Because, quite frankly, I’m sick and tired of hearing ‘All lives matter’.

Because it isn’t about us anymore.

Because I’m afraid of the people I see on the TV. Not because I think they’ll hurt me, but because I have a feeling I know more people just like them than I ever realized. 

Because no one should leave their house worried about what could happen just because they don’t look like me. 

Because I’m not talking about jobs or pay or social injustices like that. No, what I am talking about is people of color having to worry about coming home simply because they are people of color. 

Brother and sisters, I am talking to you.

Church, I am talking to you.

Seek peace and pursue it.

Because our brothers and sisters are hurting. 

Because He calls us to love one another as He has loved us and I’m not sure that we are understanding just what He meant.

Because what is happening right now is not making America great again. 

And because now I am talking to you. 

To my friends who don’t look like me.

I am sorry. 

I know these are just words on a screen, but I am sorry.

I am sorry I didn’t understand sooner.

I am sorry I didn’t speak up sooner.

I am sorry I didn’t seek peace sooner. 

I am sorry that my heart did not break sooner.

But know this. I am choosing to stand with you. 

I am choosing to love you.

I am choosing to speak up on your behalf and use my privelage to let you be heard. 

Because I will not be associated with what’s going on.

I will not let them decide where I belong based on the color of my skin.

Because I refuse to raise my children in a world where one is better than the other.

And because now I am talking to you.

Love them too. 

I know what I am asking seems ridiculous.

And I know that you could come up with many reasons why I should never ask this of you.

But be better than they are.

Seek peace and pursue it. 

Even when it’s hard. 

Even when it seems pointless. 

Because He is peace. 

And we should all be pursuing Him. 

Lord, I know to many it might seem like you are not here. But I know that isn’t true. Lord, I know your heart is breaking like ours. Lord, be with us. Be with all of us. Help us to pray for each other. Help us to pray when it hurts, Lord. Help us to pray even when we don’t have the words. Lord, love on those who are hurting. Lord, use me. Help me to do what you have called me to do. Lord, help us to seek peace and pursue it. Lord, I pray this in your name for your honor and glory. Amen.


Caught

My sin finally caught up with me. 

I'm not sure how long I thought I could outrun it. Out smart it. And, well, just ignore it. 

But I tried. 

I tried really hard.

But it finally caught up with me. 

I expected an outrage. Punishment. 

I expected to be shamed. Hated. 

And so I hid. 

I hid for a long time. 

I hid behind these words. I hid behind you. Anything I could do to hide, I did. 

But my sin finally caught up with me.

I stood there, face to face with it. 

And you want to know something? 

It wasn't as bad as I thought. 

Yes, it was bad. Yes, it broke God's heart. But it didn't define me. 

It didn't control me. 

And it didn't make Him love me any less. 

Because that's who He is. 

The world would have you believe that He couldn't love us. That He couldn't forgive us. 

That it would have to be up to us to make it better.

Y'all. The world is wrong. 

He loves us. Period.

He loves us even when we don't love ourselves. 

When we can't love ourselves. 

Because what the world uses to hurt us, He uses to love us. 

To meet us wherever we are. 

And to say, "I love you, anyways." 

It's not to justify our sin. Or to make it okay. But it's to remind us that even though we are broken, He is not. 

Even though we fall short, He never will. 

Even though we can't, He can. 

So, I finally stopped running. 

I finally stopped hiding.

Because I finally let my sin catch up to me.