Monday, December 30, 2013


"For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, 
which God prepared in advance for us to do."- Ephesians 2:10 

My word for 2014 is DARE. 

Dare to be 
Dare to create
Dare to believe
Dare to receive
Dare to give
Dare to go
Dare to feel
Dare to help
Dare to listen
Dare to accept
Dare to forgive

Those are just a few of the things God is calling me to do this next year...

What is it that God is daring you to do?

Dream again?

Step into the unknown?

Move forward and let go of the past?

Drown out lies with TRUTH.
Attack your fears with LOVE.
Rise above your past and SOAR.
Embrace your individuality and BE YOU. 

What does "dare" actually mean?
 1. To have the courage required for 
2. To challenge (someone) to do something requiring boldness
3. To confront or oppose boldly.

Let's put our daredevil capes on as we embark on a brand new year!

Go after it...
Fight against it...
Stand up for it...
Be it...

Whatever IT can do IT!

Monday, December 23, 2013

Chosen by God

"Truly He taught us to love one another;
His law is love and His gospel is peace.
Chains shall He break for the slave is our brother;
And in His name all oppression shall cease.
Sweet hymns of joy in grateful chorus raise we,
Let all within us praise His holy name.

Christ is the Lord! O praise His Name forever,
His power and glory evermore proclaim.
O night divine, O night, O night divine."

I wonder what Mary felt when she looked at Jesus' face for the first time.
Did she really grasp who He is?

The prophet Isaiah called Him
"Wonderful Counselor
Mighty God
Everlasting Father
Prince of Peace." (Isa. 9:6)

Could this tiny wrinkly-toed infant really embody all of those things?
Surely Mary looked at Jesus with wonder.

I know, as a mother, I was so glad to be holding each of my children 
in those first moments after they were born.
Just to have them in my arms was so amazing and wonderful.

And I would look at them with wonder.
"I can't believe You chose me" is what my heart whispered.

If you have children, I'm sure you can relate. 
It's such a huge blessing and responsibility to be a mother.
I'm grateful every day.
I also don't take this role lightly.

So, can you imagine how Mary felt?
She was holding the Saviour of the world.
Talk about awesome!

Do you think she felt inadequate at times?
Do you think she felt overwhelmed by this responsibility?
I have no doubt.

And God chose her anyways.
To give birth to HOPE.
To carry LOVE.
To bring TRUTH that sets us all free.

We are all Mary's.
We have been given an assignment from God to bear His name.
We have been chosen to birth HOPE, LOVE and TRUTH into this cold world.
We are ordinary girls that God can use to do extraordinary things!

We just need to follow Mary's example.
We have to say Yes!

Ladies, let me tell you:
Your social status doesn't matter.
Man's opinion can't affect His call on your life.
Your past can't be used against you.

Because He chose you!

That is what Christmas is all about.
Bringing this good news to the world.

Embrace your inner Mary this Christmas.
Just say yes!

My favorite Christmas song. :)

Monday, December 16, 2013

Change Comes to Us All

Change comes to us all.

She doesn't wait for us to invite her in.
She doesn't give us advance notice that she's stopping by.
She just shows up.
On our doorstep.

And it's up to us to let her in our front door.

Change isn't always bad.
Sometimes she brings good things to our life.

But she's still an interruption.

Even when we're stuck in a tight spot and desperately want Change to drop by, we still dread her visit.

Because we're never really ready for what she has to say.

She always seems to call us out on our junk.
She never leaves us the way she found us.
She doesn't listen to our excuses.

Yes, Change comes to us all.

Recently I've had quite a few visits from Change.
And she has totally messed up my schedule.
I'm not comfortable right now.
In fact, I'm very uncomfortable.

But, I can see the light of a new day shining bright.
And this new day is here because I welcomed Change into my life.
I opened the door.

Oh she has made me frustrated and tired at times.
But she moved me.
She moved me away from the old and into the new.

And that, my sweet sisters, is what Change does.
She moves us.

Maybe she physically moves us from one place to another.
Or maybe she moves us to a better state of mind.
She has even been known to move our hearts to love.

Yes, Change is here.
And she is asking for us to welcome her with open arms.

Her presence causes us to stay in our Saviour's presence.
She shows us just how much we need Him.

Because Change is a definite.
But He never changes.
And that is something we can always count on to stay the same.

Hebrews 13:8
 "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever."

Monday, December 2, 2013


Community in today's modern society doesn't come naturally. 
In fact, it's a lot easier to hole up in our houses and communicate with the outside world on our own terms than it is to talk to someone face to face. 
God's idea of community is a bit different than ours, though.

Psalm 133:1
"Oh, how wonderful, how pleasing it is when God’s people 
all come together as one!"

He says that something special happens when we get together with other Christians!

It's not that we can't have online friendships.
It's just that we need to have real life friendships too.
Both are important.

Trust is a huge reason why virtual relationships take the place of tangible relationships.
It's a lot easier to confide in a faceless person on the other side of the screen 
than it is to open up about our issues to someone we actually know.
Don't you agree?

Anonymity can be good sometimes. 
But if we don't talk to a real person about some problems, 
then we're not gonna move past them.

It's hard to empathize with someone through the "Like" button.
Voices need to be heard. 
Hands need to be held.
Hugs need to be felt.

Sometimes we just need to TALK IT OUT. 

I know this isn't a problem for everyone.
Some of us are really good at having online and real friendships at the same time.
It's all about balance.

But if online social media is replacing tangible friendships in our lives, 
then maybe it's time to take a break from Facebook and Twitter.
Maybe it's time to focus on our next door neighbor or the girl sitting near us at church.

Community creates a safe place.
A place to be real.
A place of authenticity.

Virtual relationships just can't see you through tough times like your church family.

Someone has to bring the meals when you're sick.
Arms are needed to hold your baby when you're depressed and can't get out of bed.
Encouraging words have to be HEARD in your ear when you feel hopeless.
Prayers need to be said out loud (for and with each-other) to get through some things. 

Our iPad's and Kindle's can't replace community. 
All they can do is offer an imitation of what real fellowship should look like.

Real relationships require work but are much more rewarding!

When a computer crashes, we usually have to buy a new one.
But when a friend falls down, we don't replace her.
We physically help her up. 

Take a chance today and be the hands and feet of Jesus.
You just might make a new friend. 
Proverbs 18:24
"A man who has friends must himself be friendly."

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Thankfulness is a Choice

In the spirit of the season, I thought I'd focus on thanksgiving today.
Not the holiday.
The heart attitude and life changing perspective of gratitude.

One of my absolute favorite writers, Ann Voskamp, 
wrote a book called "One Thousand Gifts." 

In it she explains the simple yet profound truth that
giving thanks for something every day can literally change your life. 
She goes through her own life story - and much of it is agonizing and tragic- 
and gives God thanks for the little things through it all.
The little things that most of us would miss.
She sees them.
Because she makes a choice to see them.

Thankfulness is a choice.

How many little things do we miss because we're focused on all the big things that went wrong?

Life is definitely tough.
There's no getting away from that reality.
But our attitude can make or break us.

When tragedy strikes, do we blame God for the pain?
Do we blame ourselves for what we did or did not do?
Do we blame someone else?

Or, do we thank God through it?
And give ourselves grace to be imperfect?
Do we offer that same grace to others?

Thankfulness is a choice.

It's not something we can just fall into.
We have to pick it up. 

When the snow is piled high in our lives, we have to dig until we find it.
Our hands may get cold.
We may start to shiver.
But when we find it...oh the warmth that takes over.
Thankfulness becomes a warm blanket to our cold souls. 

It brings relief.
It brings joy.
It brings life.

Thankfulness is a choice.
It can literally save your life.

Without it, we are dying a slow, painful death of soul- hypothermia.
We become bitter and cold to the blessings in life.
We become frozen where we are.

But when we say, "Thank You, God", JOY ENTERS IN.
And we notice the little things. 

The heart shaped leaf among the huge piles we have been raking all morning reminds us of God's love.
The endless rain on our roof reminds us that He is pouring out His goodness on us until we overflow.

Oh, how so much joy can come from such little things!
You'd be amazed.
Just try it.

Let your heart be embraced by the joy it brings.
I'll start.

Thank You, God, for today.
That I woke up.
That Your mercies are new every morning.
That Your word is true.
 That my family is with me.
That my needs are met.
You are the author of all that is good.
And I am thankful.

Buy Ann Voskamp's book here:

Monday, November 25, 2013

Forgiveness: Part 3

Ephesians 1:7
"In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins,
 in accordance with the riches of God's grace."

Many people walking around today don't truly understand that they are forgiven.

And I'm not talking about unsaved people. 
I'm talking about those that profess to be saved. 

They believe they have to confess daily.
They believe that they're only forgiven for their past sins. 

But the truth is that forgiveness is an ongoing, forever and ever thing!
It's even a past, present, and future thing!
And it all takes place in that one defining moment of salvation. 

Why do we make it so complicated?

When we get saved, we are forever made clean. 
Jesus took care of it on the cross. Once and for all!

Isaiah 43:25:
“I—yes, I alone—will blot out your sins for my own sake 
and will never think of them again."
Once we grasp what He did for us we can't help but be changed. 
We've been forgiven and our sins have been forgotten!

No more shame and guilt. 
No more condemnation.
No more!

Accepting His forgiveness of our sins is the only pathway to true FREEDOM!

Understanding that we don't have to constantly ask Him to forgive us 
is the key to getting out from under shame, guilt and condemnation.

Why are we forgiven?
Because God loves us. 
Plain and simple.
He loves us so much that He sent His son to die for us.
Jesus is the answer. (John 3:16)

How well do you know this revelation- truth?
Is it heart knowledge or head knowledge?

Cause we can't live the same anymore once we grasp it! 

And no-one is exempt from this eternal forgiveness. 
Just believe and receive!
Yes.He saves us. 

Anyone. Everyone. 
For anything and everything. 
We only have to ask Him once. 

Then we get to spend the rest of our lives giving thanks 
for this priceless gift of forgiveness!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Forgiveness: Part Two

I want to hand you a lifeline of grace today.

Here it is wrapped in a shiny bow from me to you:

We ALL have a past.
We ALL have made mistakes.
We ALL wish a situation turned out differently.

If you really think about what I just said, you should feel relieved.

Relieved that you're not the only one  who's done something she regrets.

We're all human and imperfect!

Every single one of us needs a Saviour to rescue us. 

2 ""

Psalm 40:2-3-
"He lifted me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and the mire.
He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along."

Thank You Jesus!
Now that I realize this truth, I am free to forgive myself!

We have to be willing to let it go.

Whatever IT is.
The thing that has been gnawing at you all these years.

There is no guilt or shame in forgiving yourself. 
Don't let anyone convince you to stay stuck in that place.
You are imprisoning yourself when you do. 

Galatians 5:1-
"Christ has set us free to live a free life. So take your stand! 
Never again let anyone put a harness of slavery on you."

Can I tell you something, ladies?
When we don't forgive ourselves, our whole identity is compromised.

We don't believe what God says about us.....

That we're beautiful (Song of Solomon 4:7)
And wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14)
And radiant (Psalm 34:5)
That we're captivating (Song of Solomon 4:9)

We can't see ourselves the way Christ does if we are looking at all our flaws!

When we focus on what we did wrong
 then we're not focused on the only One who did it all right.

When we look at the bad choices we made 
then we've taken our eyes off the One who is the best choice!

Let me encourage you today with the lyrics 
from the song "Forgive Yourself" by Downhere.

You keep laying down $100 bills
On the counter of your untamed guilt
And you'll keep paying out from your empty purse
Until you feel you've satisfied your curse
No one here is throwing stones
But you have got to drop your own

Forgive yourself, forgive yourself
Anyone who bears a scar wants to forget it
Forgive yourself, forgive yourself
Nothing ever frees you more than just believing
That you've been forgiven, come out of the prison

Can you tell me how you spend every day
Looking in the mirror of your shame
And staring like a judge, you are ruling for yourself
You tied a stone around your neck
You're drowning in a past regret

Don't believe it's okay to be like this
Don't believe you deserve to live like this
'Cause every part of you wants to know
Just one reason why you should let go

Forgive yourself, forgive yourself
Nothing ever frees you more than just believing
Come out of the prison
You've been delivered.

Let's drop our baggage today.

I'll do it with you.
Take a deep breath, breathe out and LET IT GO. 

Monday, November 18, 2013

Forgiveness: Part 1


Forgiveness is a touchy subject.


Because we assume that forgiving someone means we are excusing their behavior.
We think we have to trust them again to prove that we forgave them.

So we don't forgive.
We hold pain, bitterness, resentment and anger inside towards that person.
Because those feelings seem justified.

No, my sweet sister in Christ.
Being justified in feeling something doesn't make it ok.
All that does is make your life miserable.
And what you really want is for your offender's life to be miserable.


Un-forgiveness is a slippery slope. 
The enemy lurks near those with unforgiving hearts.
He knows he can get you to replay the hurtful situation over and over again in your mind.

But, how does that help you?

I might have every reason to get revenge on the guy/girl who hurt me 10 years ago. 
I might feel justified in my actions. 
The devil wants you to FEEL justified.

Did you know we can't let our feelings dictate our actions?
Feelings trick us!

All we need is one excuse 
to stay stuck in un-forgiveness.

But, what does Jesus say about it?

Ephesians 4:31-32 NIV- 
"Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you."

You know what I've discovered about forgiving others?
That we can't do it on our own. 
We have to have help.

I can never muster up the courage to forgive in my own strength.
I have to surrender the offense into Christ's ever capable hands.
Only He can give me the ability to forgive.

I am not going to feel like forgiving that person.
But if I give it to God, HE WILL HELP ME.
Every single day...

If forgiveness were easy, 
then the world would be doing it!
But we, as Christian women, 
are not of the world, are we?
We are set apart! 

Deuteronomy 14:2 says, 
"Remember you are people who have been set apart for Him; He has chosen you to be His own possession out of all the peoples on the earth."

When we forgive, we show people that we really believe what we preach:

 God forgave us SO we can forgive too!

No one said it would be easy, though.

I don't know what you've been through.
But, I do know Someone that does know.

And He promises a day to come without pain, sorrow and tears. 


Until then, we have to learn to forgive so we can truly live.

And the only one who can teach us is Jesus. 
He is and will always be the ultimate example of forgiveness.