my journal

Today you guys are going to get a peek inside my journal. It’s not like it’s a HUGE deal or anything, although I certainly don’t make a point to whip it open for just anyone to read. HOWEVER, a few of my friends have prompted me to share a couple of entries from over the last few months. And after seeing some threads of struggle/suffering in our lives come together for a small slice of the bigger picture and much of God’s glory, I was encouraged to impart these tidbits to help prepare us for and encourage us in the battle.

Like I said already, it’s not like I believe I have something earth shattering to give (other than the Word). I’m guessing the Lord is just pressing to share because someone needs to see it or read it a different way than before. SO, the first thing I’m going to cover are some thoughts and conclusions that I came to while studying the armor of God from the passage in Ephesians 6. So here we go with the typed out version:

Ephesians 6.10-20
The FULL Armor of God:
  • “underwear” of truth (belt)
  • breastplate of righteousness - integrity/ moral rectitude/ right standing with God
  • shoes of Gospel of peace - prepared to face enemy with firm-footed stability produced by Good News
  • shield of saving faith - covering that quenches all fiery missiles
  • helmet of salvation
  • sword of the Spirit - Word of God and is wielded by the Spirit (not me!)
So what’s being protected:
  • my most intimate/ private parts (what’s closest to me) are being protected by (knowing) Truth
  • my heart is being protected by integrity & righteousness
  • my feet are given stability by the Gospel
  • my whole body is covered by my faith
  • my mind is protected from forgetting God & His Word by salvation
  • my whole being is defended by God’s Word in me by the power of the Spirit
And sometimes when we grow weary of not only fighting but also just prep for battle alone, we need to remember this as well:
Go to church. Be in the midst of the body. God will bless even your act of obedience in showing up. Something happens when you’re there. Healing. Restoration. Just by being obedient to come. So think what the Holy Spirit will do when you come with EXPECTANCY. Waiting for Him to move. And if God is going to do this (because He is), don’t be shocked at the battles that will take place to keep you at bay. As much as it is possible, do not forsake meeting with other believers. To worship. To commune. To enjoy Him, His presence, together.
For references to check on that quote, look at Deut. 28, Psalm 24.1-6, Matt. 18.20, Gal. 6.1-2, and Heb. 10.19-25, just to get ya started.

***And just to keep it real. As I was just finishing writing this, my son dropped my iPhone into my cup of coffee. Hello, trial. Hi there temptation and opportunity to sin. This battle just got real again y’all!!! I was almost lured away by my desire to blow up on my kids and give up and not finish this. But I pressed in to the Lord with a fierceness and fought through for YOU whoever you are reading this and ultimately for God’s glory. Big Hugs from my crazy self to yours! ;)


grace and grief

My grandfather passed away yesterday.

He was my Paw Nick, and I was his Peanut. I was his only granddaughter. And I have never in my life suffered loss like this before. Heartache, yes. Trials, yes. But deep loss? No one this close yet.

Unitl now I would deliberate for great lengths of time on how to say the right thing at the right time. I worried about sounding sincere and not being trite.  I wanted to do right by the words and the receiver the best I could.

But yesterday, I realized I had never truly been on the receiving end. And I was overwhelmed. Not only with the onslaught of emotions harassing me and the inability to grieve (because I have three VERY NEEDY LITTLE PEOPLE who are currently all under age three) but also with every tweet of a text and ping of a notification. I was overwhelmed that I would even be thought of.

Somewhere, at some point, God allowed someone to share a piece of the ache that I feel. And so much so that it motivated them to reach out to me. And it didn’t matter then the verbiage they used or how eloquent or moving their words were. I knew that their act of reaching was sincere. I was humbled to be thought of and cared for in that way. Their words put some sturdy legs back underneath me so that my faith didn’t give way.

They healed. They held. And they are STILL the vessels that are ushering grace in to hold me.

So I want to encourage you, whoever you are reading this, that when a time comes for you to give comfort and words are all that you have, give them. I promise you most people aren’t going to be picky about what you give. And I sat there yesterday thinking of all the sad hearts who have mulled over who didn’t say this or that or do this or that. I pray that grace comes in and softens that hardness to receive and be humbled by such sweet love. I pray that we can continue to be thankful and rejoice and graciously receive what gifts of healing are sent our way. Because they are all from a great and gracious Father and King who has given far more than we could ever deserve.

And there lies my Hope. There lies my Joy.

Thank you to those of you who have already been willing to keep pointing my eyes back to my Helper. He is the Lord, the Issuer of every breath I breathe, and I will rest in Him now and one day for eternity!