Friday, April 24, 2015


I have been up for 3 hours (its 7am now, naps are beautiful).  Waiting for the Lord to give me something to write about. As Brett was packing up for his River to River race, running around grabbing this and that, and all his stuff, I just sat here waiting and waiting for what I should write about! As he was ready to head out the door, he grabbed the Pineapple Upside Down Cake to take for food day at work.  And it hit me...perfection.
I have been working all week to perfect my pineapple upside down cake.  All week.  All I really want is to make a yummylious PERFECT Pineapple Upside Down Cake. Moist, definitely not dry! But I like the crust a little carmelized.  I even would like some slivers of pineapple throughout it, instead of just pretty rings and cherries on top.  Have you ever had a wonderful, delightful, PERFECT, Pineapple Upside Down Cake?  Ever?  Well, I THINK I have! I of course didn't make that cake, but I'm prettier sure I have had it. Maybe as a child, I don't know, but I know I have had.  I just can't seem to recreate it.
My life can be like that Pineapple Upside Down Cake!  I know what it should be like in my head. Well disciplined, God honoring and fearing, happy go lucky kids...perfect. A marriage with no disagreements or squabbles...perfect. Children eager and happy to be homeschooled...perfect. You get the picture. Easy peasy lemon squeezy right? Maybe your picture looks a bit different, but we all have a mental image of our hopes and dreams and what our  perfect little lives would be, could be, should be.
But let's be honest...its NEVER going to be PERFECT on this side of Heaven!  My kids are learning and growing and well, being kids! Just like my cake, they have a great foundation.  My marriage...its two broken sinful people learning to love one another and love like Jesus. Just like my cake, it takes just the right amount of extra heat to get it carmelized and sizzlin'. Just like my cake, life takes the right amount of, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control to enjoy life at its fullest or should I say moisteee-est?

Enjoy the life God has blessed you with and have a piece of PERFECT cake now and then too.

Galatians 5:22

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

A life long lesson

Let's talk about being content.  I know!  This past week facebook circulated a picture of an African Momma giving her barely alive and standing child, a drink from a huge water container.  His knees were knobs and a thin layer of skin covered his bones.  The picture stirs strong emotions in me.  I have seen this, in real life, in Africa. Many have not and can easily believe its not real and continue reading their fb posts and carry about their comfortable life unaffected.  Not me.  That picture burns into my brain. Not just that picture, but the real moments in my life too. 
While in Kenya we distributed food to many tribes. I have so many mental images of those beautiful people. Long lines of mothers and their children waiting in the scorching sun with any containers they could find to hold the grain.  Children crying because they were burning up with fever from malaria.  The little boy dying under a tree waiting for the medical team to arrive.  The child with the distended belly probably due to a nasty parasite or for sure, hunger.  The child picking up the leftover grain that spilled into the sand. And its not just in Africa!  Its also in my own backyard (yours too).  Our schools are sending home food bags for the weekend so children have enough food to get them through til they return to school on Monday. (How did we get here?  In a first world country!!  Perhaps that's another post)
And here I am.  In America, in my cozy warm house robe on my computer at 6 am drinking my warm coffee, thinking about contentment. What does it mean?  How does it work?  How do I know all of this, yet still struggle to be content?  Maybe you are waiting for me to give you the answer.  I don't have it.  I'm learning.  And relearning.
I'm learning to be thankful for what I do have.  I'm learning to give it to Jesus when I fall into a place of self absorption.  When I start believing the lie that happiness comes from more, or from "simple" perfection.  I must stop the insanity of it all and hand it over to Jesus.  He is the cup. He is enough.  That is where my hope comes from.  Your hope too.

Satan wants us to believe otherwise. He wants us to strive with all our might, to lose focus through our wasted efforts trying to obtain a falsehood of security. Buying the lie that we can achieve contentment through things of this world. His goal in life is to steal our contentment in Jesus Christ. Staying in a place of discontentment is lacking peace.  Not satisfied with Christ. 

Today I refuse to let Satan have a foothold in my heart.  I refuse to believe the lie that contentment comes from a false sense of security in anything other than Jesus. He is my cup. He is enough.
What steals your joy, your contentment?  Crying, rebellious children?  Lack of money? Broken relationships? Health issues?  Perfection? Will you embrace Jesus with me today and rest knowing that HE is enough?
Hebrews 13:5:   Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”
  1. 1.
    in a state of peaceful happiness.
    synonyms:contentedsatisfiedpleased, gratified, fulfilledhappycheerfulglad;
    unworrieduntroubled, at ease, at peace, tranquilserene

Saturday, April 4, 2015

A New Day is Coming

     This day many many years ago he was in a tomb.  Betrayed.  Rejected.  Mocked. Flogged. Pierced. Crucified. Abandoned.  It happened to the King of Kings, Lord of Lords.  No worries, I promise you He didn't stay there.  The HUGE rock they put in front of the cave didn't stop our Savior. Today He is on His thrown in glory patiently awaiting our arrival.

     But in the can be hard.  Right?  Painful.  Ya?   Have you felt what Jesus felt from close friends and family?  We haven't carried a cross dripping with our own blood (although some may argue it feels as though they have), but are you carrying your burdens?  Have you been rejected?  Abandoned?  I know I have.  It hurts.  Its heavy. Sometimes more than I can bear. In your suffering do you relate, connect with our Savior?  He knows our heartache.  He knows our deepest thoughts, concerns, longings, and fears.  Just as His Father knew His from the Garden to the Cross.  Our Savior wasn't alone in His battle.  His Father didn't abandon Him, although it must have felt as if He did...remember Jesus cried out, "My God, My God, why have you forsaken Me?".  He knew.  He knew what His Son would encounter at every single crossroad.  Just as our Father knows for us.  He knows we have been betrayed, rejected, abandoned, He knows our every heartache and pain.  I don't know about you, but I find comfort in that.  I'm NOT alone. I'm not facing anything near as heavy as what my Father suffered.  And its in that moment I grab a hold of Him and find...solace.  Peace.  A breath of fresh air.  His compassion.  My Savior, my redeemer, my Father.  Rest.

     Please take sometime today to sit and cling to our Savior.  Let His promises sink in.  We are NOT alone in our suffering. (Satan will try to convince us otherwise) God knows. Let him bottle up every tear. Let him hold your heart in the palm of His hand, as you let go of your pain.  Give it all to Him. He is strong enough to carry it ALL, let Him.  He can.  He has experience and I promise you its nothing He can't handle. (remember THE CROSS).  

     A new day is coming.  HAPPY EASTER!

Some verses to meditate and memorize:

Matthew 11:28-29New International Version (NIV)

28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.

Romans 8:37-39
No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.
And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Psalm 56:8New King James Version (NKJV)

You number my wanderings;
Put my tears into Your bottle;
Are they not in Your book?

PS: my previous post is one of my favorite songs by Citizen Way, have a listen.  :)

Citizen Way - How Sweet the Sound (Official Lyric video)