Monday, March 5, 2012


Talk about a word that isn’t used often, but is loaded with meaning.
What do you think of after reading that word? Maybe it’s a landscape so rich in beauty and colors it strongly whispers of a Maker. Or maybe it’s a book that snatches you from reality and envelops you in a story. Or it could be music that translates your emotions into sound, with lyrics that voice your thoughts with incredible accuracy.
I could keep going for a long time…but let’s just say my thoughts go on over-drive when I simply see the word “captivating”.  
And who would have thought it, there’s even a book called Captivating (by John & Stasi Eldredge). I should have finished it much sooner than I did, but GEUSS WHAT?! It made me think so much about life, love, and the pursuit of happiness (cliché saying=check) that I couldn’t read more than a few paragraphs without setting the book down and getting lost in thought.
That’s a lot of thinking. And it’s almost as much ink from underlining the sentences piercing my heart.
 You see, to write out what I learned from a whole book in one blog post is impossible. It really is. 
Basically, (and this where you go “oh boyyyyy”) Captivating is the layout of a woman’s heart and how she was created to be. Scary, right? Very. But it’s begging to be revealed. I want to share something that I had never realized before…
So many women are wounded, hurting, and broken. They may not show it, but it’s there. Why? Because this world is broken. But is there more? Doesn’t it seem like there’s a special assault against women, starting way back with Eve? Why? “No explanation for the assault upon Eve and her daughters is sufficient unless it opens our eyes to the Prince of Darkness and his special hatred of femininity” (Eldregde 84). Let me attempt to explain this. Google Ezekial 28:12-14, 17, or actually look it up in your Bible *gasp*. Lucifer was a stunning angel. Beautiful and radiant. It was his ruin, for pride crept in and destroyed him. He was jealous of God, wanting all the praise, honor, and worship for himself. That’s when God kicked him out of Heaven.  Naturally, this angel-turned-devil takes his revenge on God’s most beautiful creation: woman. She embodies God’s glory and gives life. What Satan cannot have drives his assault on femininity.
Think about it…in almost every fairy tale the hero’s true love is attacked by the villain. Rapunzel’s supposed mother attacks her heart by filling it with doubt about Flynn’s love for her *cough cough Eugene*. The witch goes after Sleeping Beauty. And Satan has a special burning hatred for women.

“He fears who you are, what you are; what you might become. He fears your beauty and your life-giving heart” (Eldredge 91).
Now read Jeremiah 30:16-17.
“You are passionately loved by the God of the universe. You are passionately hated by His enemy” (Eldredge 92).

So understand this- There is a raging war against the heart of a woman. But that is most definitely not the end of the story…there is One who is bigger than any twisted lie and crushed, tattered dream. His name is Healer. 
And He will captivate you.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Imprisoned Life

Imprisoned Life
Within a cage the heart does cry,
No hope to stand against a lie
And beats in pain to be set free
To all that it was meant to be

To wipe away the loss and past
In order to preserve and last
A heart was not made for bitter end
But overcome and make amend

A rectifying God is He,
Who made this heart to dance for free
Believe in hope of healing hands
Of One that molds the heart to stand

Occasionally I wonder how that poem escaped my thoughts. One day I sat down and my fingers started typing out the first lines before I realized what I was even writing about. Then it dawned on me that I wasn’t writing a poem just to complete a homework assignment.

I typed more. The truths that had been jumbled in my head were now words. And these words summarized a few prayers that had been recently forged on my heart.
Halfway through the poem I realized I was writing this poem for someone whether I meant to or not.

It’s the oddest experience to sit back after writing something and wonder who wrote it...(I’m not magic am I?) Like a teacher helps a 1st grader form letters, Someone helped me. --yeah we’ll forget that I’m a junior in high school for a few minutes--

I didn’t know what to expect, but the effect this poem had on the person God intended it for was not what I had imagined. But I refuse to own the words that so beautifully and tragically captured a picture of an imprisoned life.

This is not my poem. It belongs to the One who spoke out His Truth through me. Who am I?
Romans 9:21  

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Who doesn't want to boast?!?

Jeremiah 9:23-24

This passage has appeared in my prayer journal over the last few weeks. I find that it provides reprimands, encouragement, and hope. But how many times do I read the first verse with a proud attitude, secretly thinking I am above boasting in knowledge, power, or money. I’m not. That, my friend, is a sad reality.  
And then comes the frozen- yogurt- topped- with- brownie- pieces- and- happy- confections part. insert any other food you are currently dying to have. The next part says “…but let him who boasts boast of this, that he understands and knows me…”.
So I still get to boast…only as long as it’s only in Him alone. Solely. Not about how I’m such a great person because of Him. Not about how I’m a much better person then that stranger over there. Not about how I am a super righteous and loving person.
Okay that makes me want to gag when I write it out. 
I can boast in Him and about HIM. Leave every “me, myself, and I” all alone in a dark pit.
I can boast in Him because He overcomes my ugly, battered, torn, and prideful heart. I can boast in Him because there’s a breath in every life form on this planet because of Him. I can boast in Him because it gives Him glory. I can boast in Him because He flips the twisted lies and hurts I see into something beautiful-something where I end up going “Ahhhh, God You were there the whole time”.
What else is truly as satisfying as boasting in Your Savior? If you can think of anything else, I promise it’s because of Him anyways. to find something somewhat similar to frozen yogurt and brownie pieces…

Thursday, January 5, 2012

These Are Weird Times

If someone ever won an award for sporadic and random blog posts it would be me.
It just happens that I have moments that I deem my thoughts possibly worthy to be written somewhere.
Endure this if you so desire

I don’t write songs.
Last time I did, I was 7. After jumbling together a few lines about Jesus and singing it in the bathtub with bubbles as an audience, I wrote the song out on a little piece of paper. That was the last time I crossed paths with writing my own songs. *gulp*
But I wrote a song.
*The whole world gasps*
Oddly enough, I guess sometimes there’s enough going on in my life that I can actually puke out some lyrics. Actually, they appeared without too much thought. I’m still debating if that’s a good thing or not…
My next feat will be mixing the lyrics with what guitar skills, if any, I have recently explored.
This brings up another issue. I don’t even own a guitar (!!!), so the guitar I am using is borrowed. Her name is Augustine. But I feel that I can’t fully own the statement “I play guitar” until I have my own guitar to name. Feat #2.

And yes, the lyrics were not included in this post. But no, they will not be secret forever. 

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Ever have a torrent of memories flood out reality and take you into the past?
This song was played several times during powerful moments at the training camp in GA before my month in Nicaragua.
The constant flashes of vivid memories from that time of my life, summer of 2011, overwhelmed me today.
I found this song and sat in stillness and quiet listening to the simple words. For some reason it puts my life into perspective.
I’m sure everyone has a song or two that does the same thing.

But then I looked outside. I knew it was raining but the streams of water trickling down the window caught me up in the TRUTH of God’s constant presence. He rained down His love.

I am filled up.
Whether in Nicaragua holding the small little children who don’t know a life beyond tin shacks, biting ants in the sand on the beach of lake Granada, rubber sandals, shirts brown from grime, the innocent freedom of running almost bare-naked into the Lake to swim and forget the poverty they were born into, or in America holding onto those precious memories, in my struggle against complacency and normalcy.
Open your eyes. Find the rain. You will be filled up.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Ministry Through Healing

     Tuesday we spent our afternoon doing VBS at a church called Luz del Mundo. The building is a mere tin shack with a bumpy dirt floor and half of a flimsy metal wall in the back half of the church.
     We finished our VBS, which consisted of a prayer, songs, the story of Jonah and the whale acted out by willing kids, and games. Amidst playing hot potatoe, Jesse (our translator/protector/father-figure that we call Padre) noticed an infected gash on the big toe of a little boy named Michael. His one toe was twice the size of his other. Concern washed over Padre's  face and he brought it to mine and Jessie's (our leader) attention. I grimaced as Michael limped away to join a marble game after showing us his toe.
Jessie looked at me and suggested I pray over him. I glanced at the boy and felt a tug on my heart. I walked over and asked what had happened. After he told me an animal had bitten him, I told him I was going to pray over him in English. I knelt down, took his hand, and prayed for this little boy, no more than 8 years old, with an untreated wound that he should not be bearing.
     Turns out, God used me to answer my own prayer. I ended up running back to our hostel (for the sanity of my family, I was not alone) to get the medical supplies I had brought for myself. Who knew I would use them for something like this? God.
Returning to Luz del Mundo, I called Michael over and sat him down on a plastic chair across from me. Padre  appeared by my side and immediately began looking through what I had brought. He started washing the toe with water and wiping away layers of grime. Assisting him during that time became one of the longest five minutes of my life. We had to pin Michael's leg down and hold his hands while Padre cleaned around the puncture wounds. He worked at it until the raw wounds were visible, the infection was squeezed out, and the bacteria killed with rubbing alcohol. My own body was sweating and I could barely handle hearing Michael's wails, gasps, and screaming, let alone look at his face twisted from pain.
     His body shaking and wimpers escaping his trembling lips, this little boy sat exhausted after we had bandaged his foot. I wrapped his sweat-soaked body in a big hug before giving him the remaining bandages. He hobbled out of the building down the street, followed by a string of children giving him support with compassion etched across their faces.
     Helping this little boy in such a small way made my heart about to explode. When we go back to the church next week, I will bring more supplies and treat his toe again. I know if we had not been there to help him, he would have lost his toe, if not his whole foot. I hurt to think of all the other children in need of medical attention but I must remember that God is still God. He will guide our team to the right people so that we can become a piece in the broken puzzle of their lives.
     To Him be the glory.