Friday, October 29, 2010

On Being a Mom

I always wanted to be a mom. I made some pretty stupid choices in my haste to make that happen. But God being what He is, redeemed my stupidity. I got pregnant easily. I have such deep empathy for those for whom that is not the case....I did not deserve the gift that God would slip inside my young and naive womb. I lost two before I would know the joy that would come with holding my son. I was literally terrified I would have a daughter, the result of a very difficult relationship with my own mother. I will save this for future blogs.....We named him Nathaniel which means "gift from God." How appropriate, he is just that.

I know that I would not have experienced the character growth that I have if I had not gone through the sacrificial experience of motherhood. I was a selfish, immature child. My son was born and it wasn't about me anymore. God provided me the profound opportunity to be what I always thought a mom should be. I have failed time and time again, but my children love me anyway. How much more like Christ are they? How much easier do they forgive and wipe my slate clean? I have learned a lot from my boys. I have been sanctified through my children.

I was thinking about Eve and the fall. There were consequences for her choices, for all of us. Can you imagine how Eve must have felt? I can only image, but she must have felt a lot of guilt. That would be a pretty heavy burden to bear, don't you think? But God LOVED her. He loved her enough to die for her. There would come a day when God would use another women, in another time, to redeem EVERYTHING!! Just one young woman and God. A woman, Eve, made a choice and turn from a perfect relationship with God. But God would use one woman, Mary, to bring us a Savior and make restoration of that perfect relationship possible.

Redemption is hard. Jesus knows.

Thursday, October 28, 2010


I led worship at a women's conference last year. The speaker was great, inspirational and all that you would expect from that type of event. But on her resume was Christian college, pastor husband, kids that had troubles but had overcome them, etc. I certainly don't want to diminish a person's struggles or cheapen their victory over them. But you know what I was saying in my own head as I listened....Yeah, but.....

Yeah, but. It's the doubt that God can really forgive ME. Sure He can forgive all you, but ME?? Sure Conference Speaker Lady, you called on the God of second chances and He came through for you. Yeah, but me? I need the God of fifteen chances. I had great intentions every time I stood back up after a fall, but I KEEP FALLING!!! God, surely one of these times you will say to me, "Forgiveness DENIED."

This is why I love Josh don't have to be a sports fan to love the heart of this story. He IS a phenom. Amazing athlete. Watch the video to get a little background. But guess what...He fell again. He gave into temptation, again....after all his "God rescued me from it all" He fell. Now THAT is something to which I can relate.

The scripture Josh referred to is James 4:7. Crack out your bible and read it...and keep going. More on that in a second...I don't know of anything more humbling than standing in front of the WORLD and admitting your failings. This is what Josh chose to do, he relapsed and he confessed.... AND his teammates rallied around him. The David vs. Goliath nature of his team the Rangers battling against the Yankees just adds to the drama!! The Rangers hired someone to keep Josh accountable, to be with him, to help him. Out of respect for Josh, the team replace the traditional champagne celebration with Ginger Ale. They love Josh and don't want him to fail.

You know what that's called? Love. That's what love does. Since you had your bible out anyway go to 1 Corinthians 13 and read what love looks like. Does Josh's story move you on some really deep level like it does me?? Here is what I think the reason is. We all know it's just a matter of time before our veneer wears out, our imperfection will be shown, we make a mess out of everything. We need a love that will not fail us, that will be there and not judge us. I need a love that knows EVERYTHING about me and still smiles when it sees me. God invented love and he made the rules. This is how love is.

So we read about humility, this is just being honest about who we are. God goes on to tell us in James
4:8-10, "Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Be wretched and mourn and weep. Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you." If we are just honest, God gives us His promise that He will draw near to us and exalt us. Like the ultimate drill sergeant, we get broken down so God can build us back up into what He created us to be. He builds us back up into a closer likeness of His son, Jesus.

That is a cause for celebration. Somebody break out the Ginger Ale!!

I Am Second Josh Hamilton

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


I don't know what's goin' on everywhere else. But up here in the great white north of Northern Michigan for the past couple of days, we've been having some wind storms that would knock your socks off. That's if you went outside without shoes and pointed your feet into the storm, but you know what I mean...I lay there in my bed this morning and I'm not gonna lie, I got a little nervous. If you've ever experienced a tornado you know what I mean. The winds are so strong they could probably rip your face off. That's scary stuff. But it made me think of Jesus.

You know how our story starts...the story of God and His creation, the "in the beginning" story of Genesis. Jesus was there with God and the Holy Spirit. They brought everything into existence out of nothing but words. Jesus called it forth and it was so. Can you imagine??? Me either. It's too big. It's too AWESOME to consider the power!! One minute, nothing. The next minute, LOTS OF STUFF!!! I'm pretty sure this wind storm that I'm listening to right now is a chump compared to THAT storm. I literally get breathless and overwhelmed at how little I understand about the power of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Think about how Isaiah saw it in the year King Uzziah died. Chapter 6, read it and feel small.

Then there is going to come another day, a glorious day. It's going to be more intense than this storm that blew the cushions off my patio furniture. Believers, atheists, Muslims, all of us will bow our knee and acknowledge that Jesus was, is and always will be exactly who He told us He is. My burden is for those who do not know this now. I do not want my friends to experience that day and hear Jesus say to them, "I never knew you."

This wind storm is scary, no doubt. And the metaphorical storms we are faced with are real and difficult. But I thank God that He called me and made it possible to tether myself to Him. I can have the assurance that no matter how hard the wind may blow, God's not gonna let me get blown off His porch.

So Here We Go

My Grandma was an excellent cook. She was a humble Cajun lady that I didn't appreciate nearly enough when she was still here. But one of the things that I remember about her was the meals she would share. Whenever we would go to Grandma's she would feed us. Food was her love language. She would have "a little dab of this and a little dab of that." She always shared everything she had, and she never had much.

That's kind of what I'm thinking as I attempt to share some thoughts. It always seems random. You may ask yourself, "Where in the world did THAT come from???" In fact, I'm quite sure you will think that ALOT!!! Well...what I have to offer is just like Grandma, a dab of this and a dab of that. It isn't much, but I'll share what I've got. My prayer is that you leave with your belly full and feeling a little more loved than before you stopped by.