Friday, January 30, 2015

Vulnerable Living

Vulnerability is a necessary part of growing close to someone. It is also, consequently, a necessary ingredient in being deeply hurt. How it is something that requires trust, but isn't always something to be trusted.

...Life's synonym is vulnerability...

It is a common thread in all deeply felt and deeply desired aspects of life, but only when coupled with compatibility does it become like a living, growing organism. Breathe is taken in with the comfortability of knowing you are understood. Breath is released in knowing you find safety in the reciprocation.'s breath is compatibility...

And, quietly, the weak areas begin to be re-built and toughened. They take on a firm substance where once a sliver of paper-thin protection was. Health to a once weakened area is restored and growth becomes inevitable.

...with each inhale, we grow tough...

Then, a bold softening occurs in the corners of your life. Where the callouses and scars once were of past encounters when vulnerability was met with incompatibility, you begin to see a change. A smoothing. A softening. A renewing of what was once damaged is now brought back to refreshed glory.

...yet altogether remain tender...

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Now, I Stand.

The days go past.
The sun rises and lowers.
The weather changes.
And still, I wait.

The run gets tiring.
The pace quickens.
The energy wanes.
And so, I sit.

The tears flow.
The smiles fade.
The questions start.
And then, I kneel.

The hands clasp.
The prayers rise.
The listening deafens.
And here, I stay.

The end is without sight.
The understanding still unknown.
The peace washes over me.
And now, I stand.

I wrote this poem as I was spending time praying the other day. It's a little raw, a little real, and an overflow of the prayers and struggles I've been daily giving back to the Lord.

So, I was meant to be returning to Scotland this past week. The intention was always to go back to Scotland after the missions conference but, with the sponsorship/visa process being delayed, I am still here and have yet to purchase a return plane ticket.

I won't lie and say that my attitude has been great regarding all of this. I've run the gamut of emotions from frustration to confusion and questioning whether the Lord really wanted to send me back to Scotland in the first place. After a restful Christmas, and some of the conversations and messages at the mission conference, I can still confidently say that I am still called to Scotland, even if His timing is different from the timing we established.

These are few verses that have held me in peace over this season and given me hope:

Wait on the LORD; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the LORD! Psalm 27:14 NKJV

Even in these times of unknown, I know who I need to be focused on and waiting on. It is the Lord alone who will open the right doors for me, at His right time.

Therefore, since we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we do not lose heart. 2 Corinthians 4:1 NKJV 

This verse was the beginning of a message at the missions conference. One thing the speaker said stuck with me: (paraphrased): Serving God is an undeserved privilege, given only by His mercy. You don't choose whether you will go or stay. The One (God) who called you into ministry is the only One who can call you out." In all of this, because of His mercy, we do NOT lose heart.

So, in light of all of this, I would covet your prayers: that the process would continue along at the Lord's pace and, in the meantime, He would sustain me in His peace and patience.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy 2014, Hello 2015

As many of you already know, the Christmas and wintry season is my favorite time of year. There's something in the scent of cinnamon, cranberry, and pine that brings about nostalgia. Much of that nostalgia turns into an chance for me to look back and see the great milestones, peaks, and valleys that have made up the year in review.

After Christmas, New Years comes and as I think over the year, I am reminded of all the Lord has done in my life and in the lives of those around me. I can look back and praise the Lord for all that He has done.

If you have a moment, this Rend Collective song's lyrics seems like the perfect way to wrap up my year (and hopefully yours as well) in praise to the One who guided and directed us along the way. (Here is a link to the lyrics as well).

So really, I just want to extend my gratitude to each of you. Since I can't be around all of you as often as I'd like, I want to thank you for the extra bits of communication I get from you through out the year: I love getting emails and letters from you guys giving me updates on your lives.

When I see you pop up on Facebook or in iMessage (even with just a quick "thinking of you" or "praying for you"), it reminds me that this ministry the Lord has called me to isn't just mine. You are all an integral part of it. You hold me up in prayer to the Lord as I raise my hands and let Him guide and use me along the way.

For this, and so much more, I am so grateful to the family and fellowship the Lord has brought into my life in 2014...and for what He has in store for 2015. So with that, I say

Hello, 2015. It's nice to see you.