Can I tell you how I feel?

Travis and I are a couple of weeks away from our move to Tennessee, and as we get closer, my heart is beginning to ache.¬† Only when I let it.¬† Most times, I try not to dwell.¬† There will be time for tears later.¬† But for the time being, can I just say something¬† to all of you girls who have been in my life since moving to the Treasure Coast?¬† You will know who you are… just read.¬† Disclaimer:¬† It is about to get mega-corny.¬† And I don’t care because I need to have an outlet for my cheesy-mushy feelings.¬† So suck it up, sisters, and read on!!!

I will miss all of you.¬† I know I’m not going away forever, and family will continue to bring me back for visits.¬† But I need to be real.¬† Honest.¬† I know that you will move on… I know that we won’t remain close friends, but rather “old friends”.¬† That’s okay.¬† I will see the pictures on Facebook where you are spending time together, taking selfies, and going to each others’ kids’ birthday parties.¬† I won’t be there.¬† I won’t be invited.¬† Because I will be a friend who used to live in Florida.¬† I will be spending time with new friends, new faces.¬† “Mom dating” once again.¬† While all of you grow closer and closer, we will drift apart.¬† And that’s okay.

But can I just say something?¬† Before I move on… before our friendship shifts out of the present and into the past…¬† Thank you.¬† Thank you to each of you who has loved me and my family.¬† Each and every one who has reached out and shown generosity with your time and your love, thank you.¬† Those of you who have listened without judgement as I griped about my tough days with my boys.¬† Those who have encouraged me toward Godliness, better motherhood, and health.¬† Those who have uplifted me when I felt low or worthless.¬† Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for being there for me.

I grew very close to some of you.  Some of us were moving in that direction, but it was too late.  And others were passing ships.  No matter.  Thank you to each of you who has played a role in shaping who I am as a mother, wife, and Christian today.  Whether you were someone who contributed one time to my life or someone who regularly poured into me and filled my cup, God has used you to shape me.  I am so grateful.

So with every “like” on Facebook, with every delighted comment I post on your social media lives or text message, I will be wiping away some tears that I cannot be in the middle of the fun, beautiful, chaos that has developed in our circles over these past few years.¬† Although it won’t ever be the same, I want to stay connected with each of you and continue to cheer you on through every milestone.¬† From a distance or right in the thick of it, I hope to continue loving each of you ladies who have been God-given influences in my life.

Okay, okay.  Time to sum this cheese-fest up:

I love you.  I will miss you.  Thank you.


quick look: isaiah 14:18

quick look: isaiah 14:18

Ok, so this is a strange verse blurb because I am plucking one small verse that is an incomplete thought out of a whole passage that goes together.  That being said, please, read all of the surrounding context to understand exactly what is being said in this verse.  There is a comparison being made between verse 18 and 19.  Check it out:

All the kings of the nations lie in glory, each in his own tomb; but you are cast out, away from your grave, like a loathed branch, clothed with the slain, those pierced by the sword, who go down to the stones of the pit, like a dead body trampled underfoot.”  Isaiah 14:18-19 (ESV)

As you can see, this is going to be a fluffy, lighthearted blurb today.

I know that the author is comparing an evil ruler to other rulers, but let’s just focus on the bold portion, verse 18: “All the kings of the nations lie in glory, each in his own tomb…”  This hit me in a profound way…

We carry nothing to heaven.  Neither possessions nor talents nor kingship.  But those things we’ve done in Jesus’ name will not fade away.

At the end of the day, where does your earthly body end up?  A tomb.  And even though you may have the admiration of those left behind on the earth, you take none of those aforementioned things with you.  Kings may rest in glory for those remembering them on earth, but when they get to heaven, there will be only ONE King.  The King of Kings.  So this begs the question, did that earthly king use his position for God’s glory?  Was he Godly in his dealings?  What did he do for the one Kingdom that matters?


“And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”  Colossians 3:17 (ESV)

Whether you have a talent to share, a large following on your social media account, or an enviable financial situation, choose to give those blessings back to your Heavenly King today.  Those choices will bring God glory and never fade away.


what would Jesus do? but no, like, really.

what would Jesus do?  but no, like, really.

I was reading in Acts about the stoning of Stephen, and I came to a realization concerning the incident.¬† Right before he “fell asleep”, he cried out to the Lord asking Him to “not hold this in against them [his murderers].”¬† Acts 7:60a¬† Does this ring a bell?¬† “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”¬† Luke 23:34a¬† Jesus said those words as he was hanging on the Cross, dying in innocence.

Many times we use the phrase, “What would Jesus do?”¬† It has become trendy and millions of bracelets have been sold donning the acronym “W.W.J.D.” on them.¬† When we think of this phrase, what comes to mind?¬† Let me throw some common struggles/dilemmas out there to ya:

How should I treat people?  W.W.J.D.?

Should I watch that movie?  W.W.J.D.?

Should I use that word?  W.W.J.D?

These are all certainly situations in which to ask that question.¬† But they are kind of first world dilemmas.¬† What if we were in Stephen’s position?¬† What if we were being martyred for Christ?¬† To put it more in the context of current events… what if we were being beheaded for our faith?¬† How would we react?

Would we, too, ask that God not hold our enemies’ sins against them after they killed us?¬† Honestly, that is a hard thing to consider.¬† I mean, I see the way we tear into each other over trivial, worldly opinions on social media and wonder if we could conduct ourselves with love and grace in our darkest, last moments?

Let’s try to remember Stephen when we go through our trivial day-to-day “trials” and interactions.¬† If Stephen could live out “W.W.J.D.” until his very last breath, we certainly can do better when dealing with our general, day-to-day issues… right, Christians?



Can we get excited about God’s Word together for a second?¬† Before the ascension of Christ, He replied to His followers question about when He would return in this way:

“He said to them, ‘It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority.¬† But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.'”¬† Acts 1:7-8 (ESV)

Pay attention.  We are given power by God through the Holy Spirit!  We have power.  And with this, we receive the great commission to bring Christ to the ends of the earth.  How cool is that?  God wanted us to help Him with this grand mission.  What an honor!  We, who are not capable of saving ourselves get to help the One who saved us!  A tall order, but a great honor.

Now let’s take a look at what happened after this promise was fulfilled during the day of Pentecost when Christ’s followers were filled with the Holy Spirit.¬† Everyone began speaking in tongues and people started hearing them and understanding in their own native languages!¬† Visualize that for a second.¬† What an amazing display of the flowing forth of the Holy Spirit from these believers!¬† And yet… the response was not unanimous:

“And all were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, ‘What does this mean?’¬† But others mocking said, ‘They are filled with new wine.'”¬† Acts 2:12-13 (ESV)

Sometimes, in this day and age, the thought of sharing our belief in Jesus Christ seems daunting because people are relying less and less on faith and leaning more on their own understanding.  If they in their own prideful, fallible human minds cannot comprehend something, they toss it aside as falsehood.  However, here in these verses lies proof that even back before the age of modern technology and science, there were always those who spread doubt and mocked believers.  The believers were accused of being drunk!

Therefore, go forth boldly.  Use the power Christ has given you through the Holy Spirit, spread the gospel knowing full well that there will be mockers and doubters.  God did not give you a spirit of fear, He gave you His Holy Spirit to guide you in the greatest quest we have set out before us.  How awesome is that?

So I proclaim: I believe in Jesus Christ and am a slave to Him.¬† I love Him, and I am His disciple.¬† I will go where He wants me to go and do what He wants me to do because I have given my life to Him for His eternal Kingdom.¬† You can think I am crazy and believe in fairy tales… you can believe I am drunk… you can believe I am uninformed and stupid.¬† It won’t change what I know to be true.¬† Jesus is the Son of God.¬† Jesus is God.¬† One and all in the trinity: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.¬† He died on the cross as a ransom to save the souls of anyone who will reach out and take the gift He is offering- the gift He chose to offer to us by the outpouring of His blood.

Someday, when I die, I will be with Him for eternity.¬† Will you?¬† If you will, then I urge you to stay close to Him… realize that your eternity with Him doesn’t start when you die, but rather it started the moment you accepted His gift of salvation and decided to recognize Him as Lord of your life.¬† Make sure you follow your calling as His child: spread the gospel to the ends of the earth.¬† Help bring more souls into His Kingdom.

If you don’t know that you know that you know that you will spend eternity with Christ, I urge you to change that today.¬† Can science prove it?¬† No.¬† Will there be plenty of mockers and scoffers?¬† Yes.¬† That is why we need faith.¬† God’s Word says:

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.”¬† Proverbs 3:5-6 (ESV)

Are you willing to let your pride die for the sake of your eternal life?¬† Are you willing to say “Maybe I don’t know it all… maybe I can’t know it all because I am a created being with limitations… but I am willing to have faith to accept this gift that was paid for by Christ Jesus.”?¬† I can’t give you scientific proof that Jesus is God.¬† But I know what He has done for those who have believed in Him, including me.¬† Trust me, you may not know now, but if you decide to follow Christ, you will have all the proof you need living inside of you.

If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.¬† For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.”¬† Romans 10:9-10 (ESV)

a changed perspective

a changed perspective

“More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.” ¬†Romans 5:3-5 (ESV)

“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” ¬†2¬†Corinthians¬†12:9 (ESV)

Travis’s grandfather had a stroke a few years back, which for any typical man in his 80’s doesn’t sound too unusual. ¬†However, for Grandfather, it was unusual. ¬†This is a man who up until the stroke had not been on even¬†one medication- not one! ¬†Healthy as a horse! ¬†Here’s the kicker: not only is he on multiple medications now, but he is also pretty much sedentary. ¬†The man who was still doing yard work, volunteering, and fixing things in the heat of the Florida summer when I met Travis back in 2004, is now having to use a walker to be able to move around very slowly. ¬†He cannot drive. ¬†He is completely reliant on others’ help whereas¬†he used to be the one to lend a helping hand. ¬†He used to take care of others. ¬†Now he can’t. ¬†Everything takes effort. ¬†When he started getting a little depressed, I understood to some extent. ¬†Sympathized some. ¬†That has changed recently.

As many of you know, two and a half weeks ago I wrecked my ankle at a local trampoline park because I evidently have no boundaries. ¬†I was trying to get off of a professional grade trampoline when I landed wrong on the edge mat. ¬†I got a third degree sprain which basically means I tore my ligaments (possibly tendons) to the point where it pulled at a bone in my foot causing a tiny hairline fracture (which is actually not even a huge deal- the bad part is the ligament damage). ¬†The doctors basically said it would have been better for me to have broken my ankle instead of what I did. ¬†Awesome. ¬†Therefore, now I am in a boot for 8-12 weeks ordered to completely immobilize my foot and keep it elevated. ¬†Thankfully, Travis bought a scooter for me that works by me resting my knee on a seat-looking part, while my free foot scoots me along. ¬†It has a basket on the front. ¬†It’s pretty sexy.

Now before I launch into this, please understand that I am not saying I understand grandfather’s or¬†any other disabled person’s plight at¬†all. ¬†So don’t send me e-mails.

What I will say is that since spraining my foot, I am getting the tiniest, slightest taste of what it means to live with a disability.  Just a slight taste.

I don’t know what I would do if I was told that this was it. ¬†“This is how you have to live for the rest of your life.” ¬†Rolling around on a device to make it from point A to point B. ¬†Everything taking 3 times as long. ¬†Struggling with simple things like putting your child down for a nap or bathing. ¬†I would be… depressed. ¬†Just like grandfather. ¬†I understand that more now. ¬†I can’t completely fathom it because in 5 & 1/2- 9 & 1/2 weeks, I will be out of my boot and able to get back to normal life (potentially with some muscle therapy). ¬†But that is the rest of his life. ¬†Immobile for the most part. ¬†After 80-some years of doing everything and keeping active, he was asked to sit down. ¬†I can hardly stand it for 8-12 weeks, much less the rest of my life. ¬†And there are people who are born without ever being able to experience complete, uninhibited mobility. ¬†There are some who get a sample of mobility before having it taken away as young children. ¬†And that’s it. ¬†Forever.

That being said, here are some things I have learned so far from my much less severe experience:

1. It is depressing. ¬†I have cried, I have been frustrated, and I have been angry. ¬†Don’t be surprised if someone who can’t get up and move around gets snippy or sad. ¬†It is really hard not to get emotional when something as small as clothing left on the floor can make your trip to the restroom a difficult, time-consuming process of getting a wheel stuck, having to balance and pick something up move it, etc. ¬†When you feel helpless to what is happening around you.

2. Sitting on your butt for hours and hours catching up on Netflix is awesome for a day.  After that, it is pretty boring.

3. Cleaning and organizing your own home is a gift.  Yes, I appreciate everything my parents have done.  They have been saints!  But, there is just something about cleaning my own house exactly how I want to with my own two hands that I miss.  Thankfully I can clean some with the use of my scooter, but I can forget about vacumming and mopping.

4. Getting clean is a lot easier on two solid feet.  I have been taking baths rather than showers since I cannot stand on both feet, and it takes forever.  Be grateful for your quick showers!

5. Visitors are awesome. ¬†If you have a friend or family member with a disability… go spend time with them. ¬†Even though it is great to have people come over to “help”, I have really enjoyed when people come over and just sit with me and talk to me. ¬†Getting out and about is more difficult right now, so I appreciate when people sacrifice and come to me.

6.¬†This situation has given me a greater appreciation of things like wheelchair ramps, handicap bathrooms, etc. ¬†When I have healed, I will bound up steps with a greater appreciation for my ability to do so. ¬†On our drive up to Tennessee, we stopped at a Starbucks to use the restroom, and pulled right up to an entrance- perfect! ¬†I was happy we were close to an entrance before I realized there was no ramp… the only way to enter was through the main entrance. ¬†Now I am not going to harp about needing more ramps and such, but I guess I am just trying to point out how nice it is to have a ramp when it is available. ¬†Those parking spaces in the front of stores specifically reserved for people with disabilities? ¬†They really help! ¬†I was grateful to have a handicap bathroom stall that was big enough to fit my scooter! ¬†When people demand handicap ramps and such, I kind of understand why now. ¬†It didn’t seem as big of a deal until I experienced needing to use them.

7. Asking people to serve you gets tiresome.  Asking people to get me things and do things for me was nice at first.  Now I am just over it.  It would take me less time to actually do what I am asking someone to do for me if I had two working feet than to ask them to do it for me and wait for them to complete the task.  Also you start to feel a little guilty for asking someone to continuously serve you, even if they are the most giving person.

8. Sometimes I am going to move slower, be more cumbersome, be “in the way”, or accidentally bump into something or someone. ¬†It is so easy to get frustrated when someone in a wheelchair is moving slowly right in front of you at a theme park or in the store, but just remember that (in most cases) they don’t have a choice. ¬†They are just as or more frustrated than you because they have to experience the slowness and difficulty moving ¬†24/7. ¬†You have to endure it for a few seconds. ¬†Be patient. ¬†I definitely need to work on this with myself.

Overall, I have a gained a much greater appreciation and respect for people who live with disabilities every day of their lives.  Your strength inspires me.


quick look: psalms 7:9-10

quick look: psalms 7:9-10

I was reading Psalm 7 today, and these verses stood out to me.  I would like to share:

“Oh, let the wickedness of the wicked come to an end, but establish the just; for the righteous God tests the hearts and minds. ¬†My defense is of God, Who saves the upright in heart.” ¬†Psalm 7:9-10

I thought this verse was so important. ¬†“God tests the hearts and minds…” ¬†So often as moms, we make mistakes even though we have the best intentions; or we do something that on the surface looks great, but we¬†don’t¬†have the best intentions.

How often do we make a meal that is healthy and nutritious only to receive scowls back at us?  The whole thing may blow up into a fit of yelling, timeouts, and tears.  God sees your heart, Momma.  He knows that you were doing your best to feed your children something healthy- putting forth effort to this whole mothering thing.  It blew up.  Mistakes were made.  Apologize and move on.  Forgive others and yourself.  God sees you and your intentions.

On the flip side, He sees when you begrudgingly clean the house, replaying a destructive thought pattern in your head, “No one is going to care. ¬†No one give a crud whether or not I clean this house. ¬†My ungrateful children will destroy it in two seconds and my husband won’t even notice the clean floors! ¬†What’s the point?” ¬†You’ve done a valiant, inherently good thing that would normally glorify God, but He sees your heart, Momma. ¬†Better to not even clean the house rather than do it with bitter intentions and thoughts.

I encourage you to be intentional today. ¬†Think before you act. ¬†Forgive for the things that were done with a good heart but blew up in your face, and face the truth of your wrong intentions for things that are good and have great potential for pleasing and glorifying the Lord. ¬†Be the “upright in heart”. ¬†God sees your heart- let that be a comfort and a conviction to you today.



Sometimes I struggle, as many do, with that quintessential question: how could a loving God punish so fiercely? ¬†Currently we are studying¬†Revelation at our church, and the study really brings into perspective for me what is going to happen to those that don’t accept Christ. ¬†It hurts me. ¬†It haunts me. ¬†Why? ¬†Why God? ¬†I understand the punishment for child rapists, serial killers, etc. ¬†But what about the person who simply doesn’t accept salvation before the end? ¬†Do they really deserve eternal damnation and punishment? ¬†Gnashing of teeth? ¬†I read Isaiah 13 and think of the women and children dashed to pieces. ¬†Why? ¬†What could children have done to deserve that fate?

I have come to a conclusion of sorts.  Not one that is going to make you any more settled or enlightened, but a conclusion either way.

I don’t think we can truly grasp our depravity because¬†we cannot fully understand God’s holiness. ¬†I know this seems obvious and uninspiring. ¬†But really think about it for a second. ¬†I don’t think we even understand¬†just how holy the Lord is. ¬†We say He is holy. ¬†We praise Him for His holiness. ¬†But do we really¬†fathom that level of holiness? ¬†No. ¬†It is in a realm beyond our comprehension. ¬†It is comparable¬†to trying to¬†understand God’s eternal existence. ¬† If you want to induce a headache, start to really concentrate on the fact that God was¬†always there. ¬†Uncreated. ¬†Never “poofing”¬†into existence or being created… He was always there… always. ¬†Okay, I need to stop or I am going to give¬†myself a headache!

We cannot know just how messed up we as humans are in general (I’m not even speaking of the obviously evil people in this world) because we cannot understand the perfect holiness that is our Heavenly Father. ¬†This is why Isaiah 64:6 (ESV) says, “We have all become like one who is unclean,¬†and all our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment.” ¬†Don’t misunderstand. ¬†God¬†loves when we worship Him through righteous acts and works, but this puts into¬†perspective that His holiness is so vast, that our righteousness doesn’t even compare. ¬†Mother Theresa may have been amazing through human eyes, but compared to God’s holiness, her good deeds were less than nothing! ¬†Hard to imagine, right?

There are simply some things we don’t understand. ¬†I know that seems shallow, unexciting, and like an¬†easy way to get out of answering the hard questions, but is it? ¬†Is it really easier to accept that we may never truly know and understand something than to believe we can somehow study and think our way into understanding and enlightenment. ¬†History of human behavior would probably point toward the latter as being our leaning. ¬†This is both good and bad.

I think having a thirst for knowledge, especially knowledge of our Lord is a wonderful craving we (thankfully) can never satiate! ¬†However, we as fallible, small-minded humans must come to the conclusion in¬†certain areas of divine knowledge that we cannot and will not fathom or¬†fully grasp certain heavenly concepts. ¬†Even the angels don’t have full understanding of all the ways of God. It is a thing of pride to think we are capable of knowing all of His ways. ¬†That kind of self-worship leads to dissatisfaction, doubt, and pride. ¬†When we assume we are able to or should understand all the ways of God, are we not again attempting to eat from the Tree¬†of the Knowledge of Good and Evil to make ourselves¬†like God? ¬†Rather, to make ourselves into gods?

My head is swirling, but that is okay because I am safe in the knowledge that my God understands all, even if I don’t. ¬†In my fallible stupidity and na√Įvet√©, He is knowledge perfected. ¬†Just as I cannot attempt to teach my 2-year-old algebra because he simply (according to Piaget) is not at that developmental level, I will never be at a high enough developmental¬†level to understand¬†all the choices and actions God has made. ¬†That is okay. ¬†I must rest in that.

I must abide in the peace that Christ gives me simply by knowing that¬†He knows. ¬†Even if I don’t. ¬†He knows.

“Great is our Lord, and abundant in power;¬†his understanding is beyond measure.” ¬†Psalm 147:5 (ESV)

“Even before a word is on my tongue,¬†behold, O Lord, you know it altogether.” ¬†Psalm 139:4 (ESV)