Wednesday, April 11, 2012

there are no words for this

We sit. The table so grand, yet intimacy tasted. We sit. This big bad world with it's deceptions and worries, so what is this peace before me, this peace we share? It is opposite of what rages nearby, so close. I can touch this war around me, in me, about me. I can hear the voices that long to drag me away, drag me away from this peace I taste, I feel, I touch. I don't have to ask where you are, or if you will come near. You are here. You are the silence that screams comfort, that pushes away worry, and demands shame to silence it's grip. You are the silent sound that reminds me, "I know all, and no one else has to know. No one else has to know what I have redeemed, what I have made new in you. But, we know." Your grace covers me, protects me, lifts me. You are this peace I need. This peace that freely gives and asks for nothing in return. For at this moment you want only me. Weakness, doubt, fear - they consume me; yet, you want me. Why would I not give in? Why would I dare to taste the rage and entertain the fools, when you are near? You are here, and you No penance to pay. No show to perform. You take me as I am. No one else does that. No one else takes me as I am and gives freely, gives goodness with no lines, no limits. When there is no one around, no one near... you are here, and you are true. You know I need this, and you provide. I need not this world. I need not these things. For in your arms I find myself in heaven's surrounding truth. In your arms I find myself connected to eternity and to those who know not time and it's walls. In your arms, your bride finds.... many joys unseen. In your arms, I know what matters, I know what's real. For in this moment I am surrounded by love. There are no words for this.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Seeing Again

I like to think this is what God sees when I am having a hard day, a distant season, a battle with thoughts, faith, and reality. I like to think that when darkness surrounds my days and my perspective that the truth of the matter is... this picture. I like to imagine that when blue and gray are my truth... color, life, light, and a clear vision are His. If this is what He sees, it gives me power. It gives me power to believe that even though I stand surrounded by darkness, by lack of vision, by weariness, and by unanswered prayers, this truth remains: His love covers. That even though I doubt His hand, question my truth, and feed my bitterness, even still, His love covers. His love is so grand that He declares it covering a multitude of sins. So with that truth my question is this: How can we judge ourselves so strong when His love is so forgiving? Why are we so intent on grabbing our brothers covering and showcasing their darkness when God is covering it, forgiving it, redeeming it? Oh Lord, I want to see what you see. I want to be where you are. I desire light to continue its journey on revealing the truth of matters, the hardness of my heart, the past lies I believed, the now lies I believe. I am forever growing, changing, and seeing again. I want to know you cover me, and I want to know you cover others. Perfection is not the condition. The straight and narrow is not the dictator. American republican clean cut living is not the combination. The church doors are not the pearly gates. He just covers. Thank God He covers.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Another Year Has Gone By - Celine Dion

Another year has gone by. Mike and I will be married 20 years in Jan and my love for him remains not only a choice, but a feeling. Some things are a little easier and some things not so much. But, one thing is true: My love for him grows deeper still. My need and desire for him in my daily life rings loud through the daily grind. But, it is during the holidays that I remember that the fight to keep our marriage strong, fresh, exciting, and fun is worth the steps that have been taken. It's during the holidays that I am thankful for the steps to come. I love you Michael Shane Simmons. I love you. And, one day, I pray, that we will be the couple in their 80's still laughing.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Not Today

I can feel you pulling me in. Always drawing my heart near to you. I am distracted much, but you hold me together and give me days that I hear your sweet voice louder. He still wants to surprise me. He still wants to come down and remind me that He sees me and that He is for me. The race for me is long and I get tired. Not for Him. He is the author, the source of freshness and newness and goodness. Open wide your heart dear one. Open wide your voice in asking for the newness, the life not yet tasted, something fresh not yet touched. Been there done that is for yesterdays thoughts. For today I know not the good that awaits, the treasures that hope has stored up for me but, I know they are in reach. They are for me, now, as I surrender and open my heart. You are the One I seek. You are the One I need. You are the One I follow. I want to lose this life that holds me back. Teach me what lose means to you. Show me. For today I have life greater than yesterday. Your mercies are new every morning. Everything about you is new every morning. What are you saying to me today? What will fill me, change me, renew me? I will take this chance to ask. I will take this time to ask. I will join in with creation today and long for you. I missed it yesterday. Not today. No, not today.

Monday, September 26, 2011


God is not in a box. God is not in a box of any kind. I know that and you know that. But even with that knowledge we allow life, it's disappointments, failures, changing beliefs, and selfish ambitions create boxes that we live by. Then, in our human experience we take our boxes and shove the Most High, King of Kings, Lord of Glory, and Father of All in those man made, wrapped in human understanding, boxes. What are my boxes? What are my comfortable wrappings made of? I am finding out. Its somewhat of a journey I am on with Him right now. Oh how I want my heart revealed. Oh how I want my thoughts, so small and fearful, to be challenged by a God that will do all it takes to lead me to freedom, to let me taste understanding, and hand over insight that liberates. Mike and I have not been able to settle our lives enough to find a church home, much less look for one. The summer was a blessing and a treasured time with family, making new friends, but in the middle of it all a church has not yet been found for us. I long for connection, I long for a place to be challenged, a place where people are there to serve, give, and support each other. I desire a place where I not only know others, but they know me, and know my children. I have had that. The taste of it is like none other. Having a dedicated family, that is not your biological family, is a feeling that is hard to describe to those who have never had it. So, here we are, settling in and beginning our search. In the search and passion for a family here, God has been such an amazing Father to my seeking heart. Holding on to only what I have to offer Him has been the glue that keeps me, the insight that frees me, and the truth that grounds me. And yet it has become what I have to offer Him that needs changed, needs His touch. He has been revealing to me in many ways that it's not what my talents can offer Him, it's not what my disciplines can offer Him, and it's not what other people can offer him because of me. It is so not any of those things. He wants to know if I am willing to place it all aside and offer Him my mind, my opinions, my beliefs... you know, the very things that set us apart from others. He wants me open to change. Open to a mind renewed. He wants my boxes. He wants my ways of thinking. I have been so set in my ways, so convinced of my truth that with enthusiasm and passion I "tag" Him there, in those places, wrapped in those boxes. Basically, there are so many areas that I have "tagged" His name, and... He's not there. He wants me to hand over the boxes, all of them. No church, not much support, changes and insecurities around, and now you want me to hand over the boxes I have you in?? Now is the time you want to reveal some hard truths to me?? So, He sheds light on a box. My response, "WAIT, WHAT? That's a box?" We have this joke in our family about the saying, "Wait, what??" The kids will say, "Wait, What?" when clearly they have heard what we said. We know this because without us giving a response to their "wait what?" they answer our question, or respond to our original statement. I have had a lot of "Wait, What?" moments with God over the past few months. WAIT,WHAT? THAT'S A BOX? With many of my boxes revealed He gently taps me on the shoulder, and whispers like a strong Father, "Where the Spirit of the Lord is there is liberty." And, to me right now, liberty is being free of the boxes I have placed Him in. So many of these boxes I have labeled freedom, and yet, what was inside was anything but. What these boxes so pridefully display is a coward, selfish, fear filled religion. There is a judging box of puffed head and a pointing finger, but labeled humility and change. With my boxed in eye view they are pretty boxes, safe, decorated to my style, lavished with my passions and my opinions. And because of that they are filled with unholy untrue personalities of God. Oh how this box revealing has been tough, but I am learning, and always hope to be learning: Where the Spirit of the Lord is there is liberty. And this is not a human definition of liberty, because we all know that even in that scripture we place our values and our opinions. HA! ...and those change depending on the day of the week it is, who has pissed us off, or what all is going our way. OH MY GOD! SET ME FREE OF THESE BOXES! Help me believe, without doubt, that where your Spirit is, liberty engulfs. Join me today. Ask Him today to show you a box made by your hands, by your mind, in response to your wounded heart. He will. Maybe not right then, but He will. Why? Because, where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. It's about His Spirit bringing it, not by human creation. The liberty He brings, I long to have in fullness. Scales have come off just a little for me over the past few months. I have so far to go, but I have tasted, just a taste, of the liberty His spirit brings, and boy do I need more. Age forty is fast approaching for me and in so many ways I'm still a child. I continue to be a child that when told something that goes against what I feel, know, or have always believed, I say, "WAIT,WHAT??"

Friday, June 3, 2011

Towels That Look Lonely?

Untouched. Put away. Lonely. Poor Towels.

Here I sit in Texas without them (family that is, not towels). It's going on several weeks now and the lonely is setting in. Nothing is meant to be alone. No one person is meant to be alone. It's not even the big things I miss. Things like dinner together, ballgames, family gatherings, a night on the town. No, it's the little things. It's the small things in life that scream, "You are not alone!" It's the small things in life that give a gentle tap on the shoulder to say, "Hey, its really good to be alive, isn't it?" It's weird how that works. I get snatched away from my daily crazy life and I miss nothing more than my daily crazy life. The things that brought frustration, now I miss. Yelling, "KEEP THE DOOR CLOSED!" now a door untouched, unmoving, silent. Time goes by and the daily events are forgotten and never shared. Even the mind and word games played by two, now I long for. The voices I shushed, I long to hear, close by and in the distant rooms. The games and toys I tripped over in frustration, I now buy and leave out just to remind myself they are coming soon. It's good to be alive when you get a hug and kiss goodnight from your 16 year old son. It's good to be alive when you see your husband chuckle at something you said, or not chuckle is more like it. Life and togetherness shout when you are soaking wet after a shower, dripping, water turned off, dry towels. But now, how is it that all of the sudden a stack of perfectly folded dry clean towels look lonely and sad? Noise I tried to run from, now I look for it. Hearing "MOM!!" like chocolate I crave. Enjoying a show in silence, but together, I desire. Singing children that I tell to quiet down... what is wrong with me? Dishes are clean. Floors they shine. Laundry complete. I have time to do whatever I want. Peace surrounds. All of it, well, it's just not life and so not what we all dream it will be. SO BRING IT ON! BRING ON THE unflushed toilets, the dirty clothes on the floor, tripping on shoes in the doorway, a dog barking, kids fighting, video game time limits, the whats for dinner dilemma, carpooling kids, lights staying on, water bill high, out of milk frustration, flies in the house, someone take the dog out, where's my keys, don't talk to your mother like that, stop tracking in dirt, unbrushed teeth, kids saying I'm bored in a house of entertainment provided, we need gas, use napkins for toilet paper kinda days!!! Bring it all on. Because, it means I'm not alone. It means I have a purpose. It means I am a part of something bigger than myself. Oh how good it is to be alive and see the daily expressions and life happen in the faces of those you love most. Good, bad, happy, or sad. When the road is traveled together, it is well traveled.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

It Anchors Nonetheless

We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. Heb 6
He is my anchor. Many times throughout one week, one day, and in one minute; He is my anchor. It's like He has an endless supply of anchors that continue to multiply as my need for them arises. Anchors are made and designed to hold fast, stand strong, prove firm, and produce an outcome of stubbornness, strength, and ability. Anchors are here for me to hold when the wind blows harder than my life had prepared. Anchors are here when the waters rise and there I sit, in the middle of a boat that is being tossed as wind and rain do its violent work. This storm I did not ask for, I did not see coming, I was blindsided by this strength of power that is beyond my control. At that point, in the middle of the storm, as I am vulnerable and in open air, all I have is this anchor. This anchor that was made for me to survive and come out on the other side safe. I love that I can grab an anchor when I am in a storm that I myself walked into, asked for by my actions, welcomed with known consequences. I love that He has an anchor for those storms too. The anchor knows not why you grab it, judges not if you deserve it's strength that day. The anchor does the job it is designed to do. The anchor has no choice - it has to anchor. It has to hold fast, stand firm, grip tight, and not move. The anchor, as small as it is, is able to hold down and keep safe the largest of all ships. The ship is bigger than the anchor, yet the anchor is stronger, the anchor is unmoving. Firm. Protecting from devastation. Oh the strong winds blow and the anchor knows not why. The heavy rains fall, and the anchor cares not how. The skies darken and the anchor notices not when. The storm beats against my life, stronger one day, slowing the next - and even then the anchor is not moved, is not changed, is not weaker in it's ability to hold me in place or hold tight in it's job to protect me. What I must continue to do is this: Hold fast to this lifesaver that is given to me without judgement, without regard to why I need it that day, without comparison to the strength it provides for another. What I must continue to do is this: Hold tightly to who the anchor is, what the anchor promises, and what the anchor is there to do. My problems, my fears, the judgements, the consequences, the doubts, the losing, the weakness of mind and body - these things are not strong enough to break chains in the anchor that hold you and in the anchor that holds me. The only thing able to defeat the anchor, the only thing that is able to prove the anchor disable in its strength to hold us is when you and I let it go and choose to hold something else, trust someone else, place faith in things that move and change. The only time this anchor will not be able to do the work it is designed and made to do is when I let go and cling to things that come and go as the wind blows. Only my holding of the anchor will allow it to do it's full work in my week, in my day, and in my minute of need. So, hold tightly to the anchor of the day. Worry not what tomorrows anchor will save you from because tomorrow and forever there is an endless supply. The anchor cares not why you hold it, how far into the storm you grab it, or how many times you have needed it in the past - it will anchor nonetheless.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Bring on the Rain

Let the rain come down today. Let it make the ground ready for new growth, new things. Let it prepare for life - things living, growing, changing. I love the rain. I think I can love the rain because I know it won't always be raining. I think I can enjoy the mess it brings because the mess won't always be there. The sun will come, dry out the wet things, bring a warm heat, and renew. The rainy days group together sometimes and try to strip hope from my grasp, from my heart that is so longing for just a small taste of it. Rain reminds me that whatever I am in...won't be long. Whatever I face, won't be forever. Whatever I need, will one day be mine. So, bring on the rain. Let it get the bottom of my jeans wet with annoyance. Let it fog up my car windows, let it give me a sinus headache. Let it make me wish I was at a beach. Because, newness awaits. Redemption stands near. Hope begins its journey past my fears and small bumps in the road. So, bring on the rain. Because really, it prepares the ground for something good that I don't yet see.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Today, March 29th, 2011

Today was loud music in the car. Singing Sara, Let the Rain (see below) loud and free. Who cares who sees.

Today was picking up my daughter for lunch, a walmart run...when she was supposed to be in school. Breaking rules are fun sometimes.

Today was a long hot shower with the struggle to not splash shampoo in my cup of coffee.

Today was a fountain diet coke... from McDonald's. Because I wanted one.

Today was time with Mandy and Veronica - My soul sisters, you know, those you can be real with, and still, love and acceptance shouts past the problems we discuss.

Today was my friend reminding me how old I was...really. I'm not joking.

Today was an emotional precious phone conversation with one of my favorite people in the whole world, my Shanen.

Today was hearing my lovers voice on the phone, long distance, and missing him. Oh it's just the gift to have someone I miss so much...after just three days, and after being married 19 years.

Today was kissing the faces of the little ones I would die for goodnight. Hearing my Isabelle say she loved me "fifty million," and my Gabby say "till the end of numbers."

Today was my sixteen year old telling me about his friends... by his choice.

Today was Isaac's cheeks, in my hands.

Today is my dog curled in a ball at my feet.

Today. It was good.

Today. I am thankful.

Sara Bareilles Let The Rain Lyrics