Thursday, January 30, 2014

for those who are rich...

Teach those who are rich in this world not to be proud and not to trust in their money, which is so unreliable.  Their trust should be in God, who richly gives us all we need for our enjoyment.
{1 Timothy 6:17}

I didn't really want this verse.  Wouldn't be my first pick...if I was picking.  I'm just saying.

But this isn't called 'First Friday Picks', right?  So tonight when I plopped that big book in my lap and spread the pages open - this is what I found.  And here's what it got me to thinking about...

february First Friday Finds

I love to cook.
But I regularly forget at least one key ingredient at the store and have to send Joey back {or improvise}.

I love to take my kids on 'adventures' and of all the places we've been I have never lost or left either one of them...not one single time.
But I have been known to get somewhere and realize they don't have any shoes.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

living in the digging times

Sometimes when I write for you I simply sit down and pour out the words that are spilling over, leaving me in a puddle of thoughts.
Those words are birthed from the emotional, relational, sharing side of me.
The part of me that suddenly sees a series of dots connecting one to another to create a picture that I can hardly wait to draw.

Sometimes the picture is breathtakingly beautiful and other times it is ugly and unresolved.  But always it offers a clear vision even before I strike the first key.  The color and shading may develop as I write but the penciled outline already exists.  The finished product is already revealing itself.

And then there is another kind of writing I offer you too.

Friday, January 17, 2014

a song for your crazy prayers

Have you prayed that crazy prayer yet?

May we have the courage this weekend to seek and find the desperate places in our hearts.
May the breaking apart lead us to wholeness again.
May we run toward...not away.
May the dry places be flooded with living water...

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

when you pray crazy prayers

It's hard to hear big ugly words coming from such a small beautiful place.

I HATE you mommy!  I do not like you at ALL!  I wish you were NOT my mommy!  And I wish I didn't have a brother either!

Sticks and stones break your bones...

and what was that part about words never hurting?
The hate-filled words of your child break more than bones.  

I guarded myself from their meaning early this morning.  It's not the first time I've seen them coming like arrows for me.  By the grace of God, a deep breath with eyes closed makes their penetration into my heart less painful.  

It's only a matter of minutes before the attacking screams turn to repentant cries.  And the roller coaster ride of Graves disease barrels forward.  

Monday, January 13, 2014

housekeeping of the heart


I heard her knocking on the doors down the hall from me.  At one point she tried twice and when there was no answer she inserted her key and turned the handle.

I'm so sorry!  I didn't hear you in here.

And she quickly pulled the door back tight.

I can't imagine doing that day after day...door after door.
Knocking and knowing that if someone is on the other side they don't want you coming in.
Always feeling like you might be intruding.
Picking up behind people who never even acknowledge you {well...actually that kinda sounds like being a mom}.

As I pulled my suitcase down the hall to the elevator I passed her.  I smiled and said 'hello'.  She smiled back.  I kept on walking but something told me that wasn't enough.  I made it to the elevator and watched the doors slide open in front of me...but my legs wouldn't carry me inside.  I left my suitcase sitting there and began walking back.  When I turned the corner she was coming out of a room with dirty towels in hand.  Our eyes met and I told her.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

the day i stopped caring what other people think

Hi, my name is Elizabeth
and I am an approval addict.
I have spent my life caring way too much what other people think about me.
This addiction is the one thing I referred to in my previous post.  The one thing I have to break free from if I really want to step into all this year has for me.

An approval addict's greatest fear is this...

Monday, January 6, 2014

where you are

I pride myself on not making New Year's resolutions.
But it's a lie.

When January unfolds 365 new days in front of me, I get busy filling them up.
I may not have a spreadsheet
or a list of goals on the fridge
or an accountability group
but you better believe I have an agenda.
Before December even has a chance to make her exit I have already begun thinking about all that could be accomplished in a year...
a whole. entire. year.

I may never declare my plans aloud but my mind fills with the expectations I place on myself for the days of opportunity that lie ahead.

In some wild-eyed delusional state I begin piling my arms full of dreams and ideas and projects.
I don't just resolve to do a few things, I resolve to do everything.
It's heavy carrying all that stuff around, which is why it's not long before every good intention comes tumbling down into a broken heap on the floor.  I'm usually left feeling like a failure before February even takes a breath.

Friday, January 3, 2014

january First Friday Finds

I haven't spent enough timing seeking real truth these past few weeks.  

We've been reading our advent Bible readings and all that jazz but if I am honest I was resting more in the ritual than the relationship.  Rituals can be a good thing, but...
Rituals don't care when you are hurting and struggling.  Relationships do.
Rituals don't get all up in your business.  Relationships do.
Rituals don't surprise you by meeting you in unexpected ways.  Relationships do.
Jesus is a person.  People connect through relationships...not rituals.

I've spent a lot of time combing websites and perusing cookbooks for help but so often I forget where my help really comes from.  It comes from a person...not an accumulation of knowledge.  

Even when I remember who to go to for help I so often do all the talking.  
Blah Blah Blah Blah
I am a master at praying and laying my life down at the throne of God but I have a tendency to stand from my knees too soon and walk away before I hear what he has to say.  Relationships require listening...finding out what the other person has to say on the matter.  There is one way you can be sure to hear from the One who wants desperately to speak to you...

Last night I took only a moment.
I read only one verse.
I was headed for bed but I paused.  That book of truth sat still under a pile of bills and lists and advertisements on my counter but I heard it whisper to me.  There's been so much drowning noise in my head lately but last night I heard.
I pushed the pile aside and opened those pages just ever so slightly and then it was me that was was torn open.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

bounty and abundance

May we all experience the truth of these words each fresh new day of 2014...
happy, bounteous, abundant new year my friends!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

when you didn't ask for anything new

Today I watched a mother and daughter walking out of an ice cream shop with treat in hand and smile on face. They looked so happyso carefree.
I stood there with the lump in my throat that warns of tears. 
We have been living with Lucy's diagnoses of Type 1 Diabetes and Graves' disease for over 2 months now.  

I am hopeful that I will gradually shed more and more of the anxiety and grief and bitterness associated with this season but for now I must be honest in saying this