Part Two…A Curve in the Road

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Anna tiptoed as she did when she was a child playing hide and seek. She stifled a  desperate giggle. She put her fingers to her lips to silence the butterflies in her stomach. Finally, she closed the door behind her hoping her father wouldn’t awaken. He used to be a deep sleeper but ever since his health started to decline, he had been waking up more frequently. As Anna closed the wooden door behind her, a wisp of her father’s wisdom pressed in on her heart. “Be sure your sin will find you out”. Anna brushed the thought away. Visiting the most handsome solider in town was not sinning. It was pure excitement! She loved the thought of doing something secretive. It was freeing. With that thought Anna attempted to walk like a lady though inside she longed to race.  Would Luca still be there? Anna was thankful that the cobblestone streets of Jerusalem were silent. By the time the stars were out the townspeople were asleep. Fear crept in. What if he was there? What would she say? She reached the outskirts of town and saw the lone Olive tree that overlooked the grassy fields nearby. She saw Luca sitting on a rock in front of the ancient tree. Trying to look calm and serene Anna smiled and sat down on the rock beside him.
Luca smiled though he kept refolding his hands.
“Anna, this land of yours is beautiful. I have not been here long and already I am in love with it”.
Anna smiled, unsure of what to say. She knew what her father would say if Luca had commented on the beauty of the land. Her father would tell Luca how the land was blessed by God and that His hand was on it. Anna gasped inwardly, surprised that she would be thinking about her father at a time like this.
Luca spoke again. “But it is not the land that I have grown deeply fond of. It is you”.
Anna blushed as Luca inched closer.
“Are you seeing someone”?
“No, I am not betrothed”.
“Perfect, then would you consider going steady with me”?
“Who else would I chose over you”? Anna smiled a coy grin while batting her eyelashes.
Luca squeezed her hand silently and the two continued to watch the stars in silence.

Later that night Anna slipped carefully into bed, hoping that her movements wouldn’t interrupt her father’s sleep.
Morning dawned fresh and hopeful.  The people in Jerusalem went from day to day. Sunrise to sunset was how they lived. But to Anna today was a day full of miracles. She was in love and nothing else seemed to matter. Anna was in a cheerier mood. She quickly got dressed as she had overslept due to being out so late with Luca. She began bringing the eggs in from the chickens and crack, crack, she began to make breakfast. Anna knew her father had been up since before dawn praying.
“How did you sleep”? Anna asked as she heard her father’s steady footsteps enter their kitchen.
Her father did not respond. It was unusual of him. Anna hoped that her father did not know about her secret rendezvous last night.
“Anna, I want you to come with me today to the temple. Jesus is coming”.
Anna turned around to flip the eggs, so she could roll her eyes privately.
“I don’t know father, I am busy”. What she actually wanted was more time to day dream about Luca and last night, and a future as bright as the stars last night. Her heart grew tender just thinking about it.
“Anna, Jesus is coming. You do not have time to be busy. You will come with me”.
Anna was not in the mood to argue. Anything to hide from her father about last night.
“Alright father, I will come”.
She might see Luca. She brightened at the thought.
She packed a small lunch, humming the whole time.

Anna was not sure what to think of her father’s Jesus. Jesus was sitting on a hillside preaching. He was sitting on a hillside preaching. What man of the law sat to preach? Where was his level of authority?
She said none of this to her father. They sat in the back, because there were so many people crowding up near Jesus. How could Jesus speak? But He didn’t seem bothered to be around so many people.
Her father was listening intently even though Anna knew that his hearing wasn’t what it used to be.
Anna halfway tried to listen, but her mind was on other things. She kept looking over her shoulder to see if Luca would arrive. Jesus kept talking about being poor in spirit, and how believers were to be the salt of the earth. It was all rather puzzling. Suddenly, she spotted Luca out of the corner of her eye.
“Excuse me father, I will be right back”, she whispered. Her father would probably think she needed to relieve herself.
She forced herself to walk slower and look more at ease.
Luca smiled but it wasn’t a wide smile.
“Hi Luca”. Anna said, shyly.
“Good morning Anna. Did you sleep well”?
“Yes”.
“I can tell. You look more beautiful than you did yesterday”.
Anna lowered her eyes and blushed again.
“So, did you come to watch Jesus too”?
“It is my job to watch Jesus. I have no choice. It is my duty”.
“What do you think of Him? He is so unlike any teacher I have ever seen”.
“Anna, don’t pay him any mine. He is simply a radical. There are rumors that he wishes to outrun the Romans”.
Without thinking Anna tenderly touched Luca’s arm.
“I’m sorry. I hope those rumors are false”.
“Don’t worry. I’m not going anywhere”. He winked at her, but she could see the uncertainty in his eyes.
Anna could see Luca pull away from her as his supervisor came into the distance on a horse.
“Tonight, at the Olive tree”?
“Tonight”.
Luca squeezed her hand and quickly left.
It was not fitting for their relationship to be public, a Jewish girl and a Roman solider would never fit in society. But Anna knew better. Love was stronger.
Anna went back to sit with her father. His eyes were still fixated on Jesus, but her father’s face was tense and strained.

 

That evening as they were walking home, her father startled Anna’s daydreams by speaking a loud. “Anna, I was full of hope today. I have seen the Messiah! I have heard His voice. It is really Him”!
Her father’s face was full of light. It had a special glow about him.
“Anna, why do you doubt?”
“Father, how do you know that He is really who He says? How do you know that He is not just trying to turn the people away from Rome”?
Her father gasped. “How could you say something like that, He is just and meek, bringing salvation. Every since you were little I have raised you to know the prophecies of old. This is Him in fullest light”.
Anna simply nodded. She thought everything her father told her as a child were merely stories.
“Anna, I know you must want to be married. I hope he is a good man and loves Yeshua.
Anna was silent.
“Is there such a man? Oh, how I have prayed to see this day! How come he has not approached me yet”?
Her father stopped and watched her face.
“Who is it”?
“I cannot tell you”.
“You must. You know that our heritage the father must match the daughter. It is to be a match made in Heaven”.
“His name is Luca, and I love him”.
“I don’t remember any boys named Luca in our district. Who was his father”?
“Father, you wouldn’t know his family. He is Roman”.
Her father’s face turned red. Her father rarely became angry. Losing Beulah, her mother had been the hardest blow on him and she believed it had aged him. But Anna knew her father was angry that she would have the audacity to go behind his back.
“You must stop seeing him”.
“I will not”.
Her father was upset but he didn’t speak. He put his hand over his chest. He began to breathe heavily, and then he collapsed to the floor.
“Father, I am sorry. I am sorry. What can I do”.
“Stop Daughter. Stop your worrying. My time has come. I don’t have to be here any longer. I have just seen Jesus and I tell you He is alive. The prophecies are true! You must follow Jesus. He is the way, the truth, and the Life”.
Her father smiled.
And then he was gone.
Anna held his body in her lap and began to sob. It was all her fault.

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A Walk in My Shoes

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I don’t know about you, but I hate buying shoes. Oh, I know it’s beneficial and I love the end results, but I don’t enjoy the process. I must try on so many pairs before I can find the perfect match. I also become very attached to old shoes. They may be ripping at the seams and have holes, but they are comfortable, and they are mine. I know what miles I have walked in each pair of shoes. I know which shoes I was wearing when the guy told me I was pretty. I remember the shoes I wore to an audition or a special occasion. Shoes are like a piece of where I’ve been and of the miles I’ve traveled.
I like to compare friends to shoes. When you first meet a good friend they are snazzy, new, and so put together. At first you are not sure how to fit them into your life. Maybe this person looks really cool from far away but how could they possibly want to be friends, with an ordinary person like me? You want them to fit but we all know the pain of wearing cute shoes that pinched our toes. But friend you must be brave and go make some friends. Share your smile. Some people may reject you but keep being the person God has called you to be. He will show you. Some friends may appear perfect. However, the more you get to know them the more real they seem.  Outward appearance is such a small portion of what truly lies inside a person. It’s what in the soul that counts (for shoes and people 😊).
There are some shoes that you would never where in the rain, they are not durable. There are other shoes that you would wear to a party while others are perfect for cleaning the car. I think some friends are like that. Some friends can empathize with your deep pain. They know when to speak and when to stay silent. Many times, God puts friends in our lives that can empathize with our pain because they have walked the same road before and have tasted the same flavor of heartache.
Our friends will fail time and time again. “Faithful are the wounds of a friend but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful” Prov. 27:6.  The shoes will break, and you will have to go to the shoe store again to try on fifty some pairs before finding the right one. Sometimes our friends will leave and our hearts will stand by and break. But alas we cannot keep every shoe. Sometimes it’s sad when we are just getting comfortable in our new pair of shoes and then leave. But we must trust God. He must have brought a friend in our lives for a reason that may never be explained to us. You have no idea how your life could be eternally impacting your friends lives, even those friends that walk away.
Sometimes it is healthy to let our friends go. Just like I had to throw away shoes that I’ve had for years due to sentimental reasons, we to must put aside feelings of the past and walk in the new future God has for us. Lives will move on and situations change.  It can be difficult to give up control and say goodbye to memories or moments of affection but You can trust God. It is better to surrender at God’s timing then to hold on and cause more damage after God has asked for the release.
But you know what? Jesus is the closest friend you can ever have. He has walked every mile with you. If you are His child then He is with you through every puddle, every heart break, and every time you turn away. Jesus is there. He will never leave you or forsake you. Stop looking for a perfect friend, a perfect parent, or a perfect spouse. They will never be flawless. We cannot expect them to be.
But Christ Jesus is flawless. He will never leave me. Only Jesus Himself can completely empathize with my pain and wipe away every tear. Jesus is the best friend in the world because He is God and He is the only one who completely understands.
“O LORD, You have searched me and known me. You know my sitting down and my rising up; You understand my thought afar off. You comprehend my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways. For there is not a word on my tongue, but behold O LORD, You know it altogether. You have hedged me behind and before and laid Your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; It is high, I cannot attain it” Psalm 139:1-6.

So be thankful for your family and friends. They are worth keeping. But as you take each step remember the One who goes before you and walks beside you. With His steps He bore our sins as He walked to Calvary. When we belong to Jesus He can mold our will to fit into His. And then there is always a perfect fit between you and Your Savior.  ❤

Ch. 1 A Drop in Time that Flooded the Centuries

A 6 part series leading up to Easter.

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Anna smiled. Dawn was rising in Jerusalem as she and her father were sitting on the roof enjoying the sky and each company before the daily duties fell upon them.

“The Messiah will come soon. Did I ever tell you that your grandfather saw Jesus “?

Anna rolled her eyes and smiled. She knew her father was becoming older. As each day passed her father seemed to care less and less about this world. He must miss mother, Anna mused. She could never understand her father’s tight holding to the phrophies and their Jewish heritage. Why couldn’t he simply embrace world with the Romans?

“Yes, at least a thousand times”.

“Anna, one day the Messiah will come. “Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold your King is coming to you; He is just and having salvation, lowly and riding on a donkey”.

Everysince she was young her father had quoted the old phrophicies over and over again. To her they were just beautiful stories that were a part of her Jewish heritage.

Her father took a long pause and his eyes misted over. His gaze sifted upward. Anna noticed that he got this way quite frequently.  Everyday he seemed less and less with her. Anna  worried about her father’s health. Yet he refused to use their hard saved money for a doctor.

“Very soon Anna, very soon”.

Noise erupted the silence. The sound of hoof-beats could be heard, racing around the cobblestone streets.

Her father sighed. “I wish they would leave us alone”.

“Maybe your Jesus will come to deliver us from the Romans”. Anna sarcastically suggested.

But the tone was so slight that it went unnoticed by her father.

“Anna, Anna. You have it all wrong. Jesus is coming to save us from our sins, not the Romans”.

Anna shook her head. She was obviously getting nowhere with her father. He was deeply set in his ways. She eased up from the bench and strolled down the outside stairs to start making breakfast. The Roman solders were already mingling throughout the town, letting people know was in charge. Unlike her father, Anna was used to the Romans. Since she could remember Romans flooded the streets. Their armor metal constantly scintillated in the sunshine.

She began humming as she kneaded the bread for flour. Over and under again. The simple motion was therapeutic and healing. Sometimes she wondered if she would need to care for her father for the rest of her life. She longed for freedom but that was not yet possible in this society. It simply wasn’t fitting for a single-women to live alone unless she was a prostitute. Pulling back the curtains sewed from her mama, she peeked her head out the window. She liked to watch the Roman soldiers make their rounds in the morning.

One stopped at the window.

“Do you have some water to parch my throat”?

Anna nodded. His voice was deep and rich. It was the kind of voice that demanded attention and respect.

“Of course, sir”. What she felt mattered little. To refuse a Roman solider anything would mean punishment and even death.

Thankfully she had a bucket of water by the door that she had collected yesterday. She dipped the gourd in and handed it to the soldier at the window.

He drank eagerly.

“Thank you. What is your name”?

“Anna”.

“Anna. It is a pretty name. It is Jewish, are you?”

“My lineage is that of a Jew”.

Mhhhhmm

“What is your name”?

“Luca  “

“I like it”.

Luca turned when he heard his centurion call his name. She didn’t want to get him in trouble.

“You should go”.

He turned to go and then he stopped.

“Are you seeing someone?”

“No”.

“Then meet me tonight when the stars come out under the large olive tree outside town”.

Anna nodded and smiled as he ran away.

“Luca” she whispered the name as she continued kneading her bread. He was far more audacious than any of the Jewish boys that had asked for her hand.

She turned to see her father standing in the kitchen. Anna was startled. She hadn’t heard him. Her father didn’t say a word. He simply nodded to Anna as he strolled to his room to pray. Anna let out a sigh of relief. Hopefully, he didn’t hear the conversation she just had.

That night her father retired early. Anna slipped outside being careful not to make a noise. The streets of Jerusalem were quiet and peaceful. Would Luca be there?

Dare to be Different

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The fog masked the morning bringing out the darkness but hiding then next steps. The girl drove slowly. Though she had driven the road a thousand times before this time she felt like a wanderer on a forgotten road. It was a Pride and Prejudice kind of morning full of mystery, wonder, and heart pangs that intensified the longings. She drove cautiously searching for any ounce of light of hope.  It was still too early for any light to peek through the immense darkness.  Nothing could penetrate the eerie vagueness. Hopelessness covered the air and the sky. The girl couldn’t even see the sky. She felt like she was going alone, uncertainty consumed every hidden space. But then relief flooded her soul when she saw light. Light. Hope. Never had she experienced so much happiness upon arriving to work.

As God’s child I am commanded to be salt and light. (Mt. 5:10-16,Col 4:-6) But to be real honest I don’t always want to be salt and light. I don’t like to stand out. I want to hide in the shadows. Sometimes it’s because I’m afraid or insecure or not feeling beautiful. Standing out is hard. If you look up at the sky on a clear night you will see the stars. They cannot be hidden. If you go outside on a warm, sunny day, you cannot avoid the sun’s presence.

The other day someone told me that I was too strong for God. Well, not those words exactly but this person thought my writing was a waste because I chose to use it for God. I was hurt by this person’s words. I didn’t know this person well at all, but the words still hurt the same. But I cannot allow one (or two or three or a thousand) negative comments define who I am in God’s eyes or change how I live for Him. If I cannot take one person’s comment then how weak am I? When someone makes fun of you for being to passionate for Jesus, take it as a compliment! I know it doesn’t feel like it at the time,  but when you are passionate for Jesus it proves your authenticity. If people disagree with my stand for Christ that is okay. But I want them to know Jesus. They can choose to reject Him but I don’t want it to be because I never told them. I want my life, my lips, and my thoughts to display the gospel. “No weapon formed against you shall prevail” Is. 54:17.

This is the battle cry! Forget what is behind and reach forward to what is ahead. I press toward the mark of God in Christ Jesus. Philp. 3:14. Put on the whole armor of God! Eph. 6:10-20. This is not the time to be a wimp. Yes, some days I want to hide away for a week and become a hermit in a sunny field far far away. But God has called me to be a light. You have no idea what others are going through while you continue to shine. So shine, through the fog, the uncertainty, the doubt, the heartache, and the tears. People will leave you, your heart will get broken if you chose to follow God ,but one day when I am at the throne room of my Savior every trial will be worth it. Every one. I will see His scared hands and I wonder if I will weep at my lack of caring.

Shine because you never know who is watching. You don’t know who is driving a foggy road by themselves desperate for an ounce of light of hope. When people reject you they are not rejecting you, but Christ their maker. Keep your eyes heaven fixed and your eternally entangled. I know it’s hard to shine when everyone else blends in, but we were meant to be courageous and reflect eternal love.

Though I am Weak

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“The crucible for silver and the furnace for gold, but the LORD tests the hearts” Prov. 17:3.

I read this verse this morning while sipping my coffee. Outside the world was bleak and dreary and the inside of me was depleted in every way imaginable. This verse made me think about the diamond, the pearl, and the standards of holiness that I long for as God’s child.  What girl doesn’t like a diamond or a pearl? But first the stone must be purged.

 

“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure, buried in a field, that a man found and reburied. Then in his joy he goes and sells everything he has and buys that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls. When he found one priceless pearl, he went out, and sold everything he had, and bought it” Mt. 13:44-45.

These verses above are about the kingdom of God. You have to seek the Lord with all your heart. Jer. 29:13. He is a fine treasure to be sought with all you have.

These verses make me think about holiness and purity. Be a woman that must be sought after. Where one must leave all to find you. Are you the kind of woman that is courageous enough to rise above the standards to be the woman that God has called you to be? It is never easy to be different for God but it is eternally worth it to be different for Him. Browse through an old History book. The heroes of the past were always people that rose above the status quo. Always. Nothing great is accomplished if you want to be like everyone else. Greatness happens when you  trust God with everything and dare to rise above easy and pursue HIM.

The pearl must be cleansed again

Again

And once more.

According to Pearls.com the perfecting process of a pearl can take up to three years.

Till it is refined.

breathtaking

beautiful.

When you see and touch a true, genuine pearl it’s so fragile and yet so strong and resilient. It is a true beauty. Oh, how I long to be that as a woman.

You see I believe that a true beauty is a rare treasure. I think that in society today true, inner beauty of a gentle, quiet, godly spirit is not esteemed. It is thought that beauty is found by skimming the surface of one’s walk with God, barley making it with The Kings of Kings who is enthralled with your beauty. Ps. 45:11. True beauty is refined again and again by the Master’s hand. True beauty is a life that has surrendered to God while being molded through the waters of suffering. But a truly beautiful woman doesn’t allow herself to become bitter. The hardships do not define her. The people who rejected her do not define her. Her king of kings and Lord of Lords defines her as He continuously makes her more beautiful. True beauty does not come cheaply. Elisabeth Elliot said it best when she said that it was not with mere silver and gold that Jesus bought you. Oh, no. He paid for you it with His Life, with His blood, and with the sweat of His tears. Jesus paid it all. He suffered for those who spat in His face. He suffered for me even though I continuously tear down Jesus by my words, thoughts, and actions. True beauty doesn’t come cheaply.  True beauty comes through a life refined through the fire.

Everyone goes through discomfort and trials. It is unavoidable in life. We can choose to harden and become bitter or be flexible and allow God to shape us. Don’t allow your trials to be a waste. I had to thank God for my daily pain. It is so easy for me to complain or become self-focused because of my pain. But in my weakness, He is strong! 2 Cor. 12:9. Through my suffering I don’t just know God is good and faithful, I experience it first-hand. When I think I’m going to pass out. He sustains me. He guides me. And friend, He is so faithful! Through my weakness I want Christ to be magnified in my life. I want my life to be like a stained-glass window. When people see me, I want them to see my weakness. I want them to see God do things in my life that are only God because I am to weak and unworthy. Though the cutting away of my sin and spiritually immature ideas is painful, I think it allows me to be more beautiful in His eyes. “Every branch in Me that does not produce fruit He removes, and He prunes every branch that produces more fruit” John 15:2.  My friend put it best when he said that we ask God to make us more like Him and then God takes away whatever was distracting our focus of God. But then we complain or are surprised by the purging. We must let patience have it’s perfect work so that we may be complete in Him. “Consider it a great joy, my brothers, whenever you experience various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience, but let patience have its perfect work that you may be perfect (mature) and complete lacking nothing” James 1:2-3.

“Now may the God of all grace, who has called us to His glory by Christ Jesus will perfect, establish, strengthen, and comfort you after you have suffered awhile” 1 Peter 5:11.

My life is temporary and so short. I don’t know how long I will be here. I hope I will be here to pass the torch to the next generation but only God knows. He holds my future. I must live each day with eternal purpose even in the midst of my suffering. ❤

 

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You are Loved!

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Happy Valentine’s Day! I don’t know what this day has been like for you. Maybe it has been beautiful with rose petals and kisses (chocolate or otherwise…:)). Or maybe you have felt pangs of loneliness and vulnerability that are sharpest on this day of love. Maybe you’ve heard it a thousand times before but I want you to hear it again. You are loved and cherished by the Creator of the universe. He sculpted the stars and made you in His image! “We love Him because He first loved us” 1 John 4:19. The only way that we are able to love or scratch the surface of the depthness of true love is because God spanned the galaxies because He loves You and wants you to belong to Him! “For whoever calls on the name of  the LORD shall be saved” Romans 10:13. The hands of Jesus are open. Run to Him. He is the source of true, love. Nobody loves you as much as Jesus does. Trust Him friend. Trust Him.

Below is a poem I wrote last February. It’s about Cinderella (my favorite princess 🙂 ). I hope you enjoy it! ❤

 

Singing Cinderella

Velvety twilight
Glistening galaxies
girl weeping by the treasured tree
Her hair is matted, her dress is torn
Tears sprinkle cheeks now forlorn.

A kind woman smiles
Touches the girl’s cheek
Bringing hope, comfort.
Uplifting the meek.

A wand is waved
Words wave and change
Change
Changing the girl in tears
To a woman in a lovely gown.

Rags are present no more
Tear smudges are now replaced
Dress of the finest silk swishes and swirls
The girl smiles as if in a trace.

Off to the castle the girl flew
On a carriage made of silver and gold.
Heart went pumpity pump
At possible wonders to behold.

The carriage stopped
And the lovely girl crescendoed out
alone.

Shaking, in her silver slippers
She was beautiful inside and out
And it scared her
What would anyone say if they found out?

Smiling she began to sing
Softly, silently
A gentle lullaby
Soprano orchestrating with the velvety starry sky.

Picking up her long train
Squaring her shoulders strong
She waltzed into the ballroom
Alone…
But not for long.

Royal red carpet welcoming
Oblivious to the fact that she was in disguise
Guards in regalia of red and blue
Chandeliers playing the riches tune.

Bravely yet meekly she entered the background
Transforming the picture entirely.

Bored, the prince stifled a yawn
His eyes glazed past the yearning women
He caught his breath at the sight of the
Beautiful woman.
Quickly, he strode towards her.

He’s coming toward me.
Authentic blush grew
No, he can’t
Maybe he’ll know
Who I really am.

He bowed with graceful goodness
His gloved hand reached for hers.

Together they danced and danced.
Feet silhouetted upon the glass floor.
His eyes dreamy green. Hand upon her tiny waist.
Around, around, through the arms and back again.
Twirling, twirling,
Her dress swirling
His eyes fixed on her.

The music ceased
Side by side they strode into the moonlight for a stroll.
Still shaking, she strolled near him, she knew he cared, she wasn’t afraid.
Whatever battle he was fighting, she would fight with him.

The prince was thankful for a kindred spirit
Wait, I apologize.
His voice resounded soft.
I never asked about you.

She blushed
About to tell him who she really was
When dong, dong dong,
Twelve times strong
Her ears were pained
Oh, how she longed to speak frankly.
I’m dreadfully sorry but I must go
Tenderly, he kissed her cheek.
Ella ran, ran
Faster, faster.

He’s chasing me.
Calling me
Wistfully she longed to run back
But her will pulled her on.
Slipping, her shoe
Fell to the ground

It didn’t crack.

 

Orion’s belt shone strong
As Ella raced away
Hopped into the carriage
Prayed for the prince in a wistful way.

Twelve O’ one
Docked the clock
The girl returned to rags

Her heart smiled still.

Days passed
Dishes were washed
Pancakes flipped
Clothes strung on the line
Hopeful was she
Waiting.

The prince searched with the missing shoe
High, and low
Far and wide.
Searching for the beautiful woman
With the pure heart
hidden, on the inside.

Finally, he heard the song of sweetness.
He dashed into the house
Past the angry, fiery woman
Past the silly, flirtatious females
Up the wooden stairs
He knocked down the door
Fighting for the woman inside.
Fighting for her heart.

He found the same beautiful woman he knew before
She wore not a grand ball gown
Rather plain, work ware.
Her eyes were red, blood shot yet hopeful
She gasped,
He was seeing her in her truest of self.
She blushed in shame.
Carefully he came near
Striding on the wooden boards
He knelt before the girl on the window seat.
Placing the shoe on her cold, graceful feet.

Eyes locked
It’s you I want
He softly said.
Though I’m homely and plain and all alone, she whispered
No, because you’re beautiful inside
And I want you
For my own.

He Carries Me.

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I am so tired and bone weary. Sometimes it is all I can do to get out of bed or stay awake till 9:00pm. But I must allow God to be my strength. I don’t know what insecurities or burdens stand in your way to what God has called you to do. Maybe this is the season where God has called you to mother your crying children, care for an aging parent, or pursue something that scares you to death. Look to JESUS and run towards Him. Don’t let Satan allow the allurement of the past to drag you down. Run hard after Him.

“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witness, let us lay aside every weight (distractions from God’s calling), and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us (the ministry God has called you to) , looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down, at the right hand of the throne of God” Heb. 12:1-2.

It is through our weakness that He is strong! (2 Cor. 12:9)I wish I could be strong all the time, but I am weak. But in my weakness God can be glorified because the great things I have done are only accomplished through Him. Think about Gideon. (Judges 6-7). He was the youngest son from the lowest tribe and God used him. God used Gideon to defeat the Midianites although Gideon only had three hundred men. The winning of the battle was only an act of God. There could be no other explanation.
So, I don’t know what battle you are facing whether it is emotional, physical, or spiritual. You cannot win alone. But with God’s strength He will win! The winning may not be what would have wished but if God is praised than it was not a loss. I am still weak, but if Christ is better seen through my weakness than it will be worth it.

Love you. ❤

Sarah

 

Open My Eyes

SAM_3025 Have you ever lost something precious and extremely important? I have. Last night and today I was searching frantically for this item. I looked everywhere, under the bed, in the car, under the couch, in all my coat pockets, in my book bag etc. I even went through the dirty laundry. I was grumpy and moody and I took it out on my faithful family who volunteered to help me in my search. My day was burdened because all I could think about was how careless I had been. But you know what is even more embarrassing? This item was in my purse…..the whole time! I know any high thoughts you might have had about me are smooshed and trampled. I thought I had cleaned out my purse five times already but apparently not. Through this experience I think God was teaching me something.

Some trials in life are made harder simply because I fail to see the promises of God that are right under my nose. Like Mary Poppins said, “Some people can’t see past the end of their nose”. This is a true statement. God’s promises are in His word if I would have the eyes to see and the desire to search His word for wisdom. God wants to see me search, yearn, and crave His presence. As children of God, we are equipped to fight the spiritual battles that are constantly waging! Eph. 6:10-20. So, open God’s word dear friend and seek Him.

Maybe some of you have family or friends in your life that don’t have a relationship with Jesus. You pray and speak and pray some more and you still don’t see any results. Maybe you grit your teeth out of frustration or give up through misunderstood tears. But pray that God would open their eyes. This person that is weighing heavy on your heart, is blind.  Maybe your friend or family member is searching and searching for truth. They search in the Koran, under religion, and behind the New Age movement.  Yet they continue to search because each time they come up empty. That’s why they continue to stumble. God is available to all. Jesus died and rose for all so that all may follow Him.  “For whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved” Romans 10:13. Be vigilant. Prayer is a powerful weapon. “The effective, fervent, prayer of a righteous man avails much” James 5:1. You have no idea how God may be using your prayers. Be strong and hold tight to the promises  that God has placed within your hands!

 

Love you all!

Sarah ❤

Dare to See the Details, Dare to See the Extraordinary.

SAM_2306      Sometimes God asks for our attention when we are too busy and have no time.
“For He shall grow up before Him as a tender plant, and as a root out of dry ground. He has no form of comeliness; and when we see Him, there is no beauty that we should desire Him. He is despised and rejected by men, a Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised, and we did not esteem Him. Surely, He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, smitten by God and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned, everyone, to his own way; and the LORD has laid on Him the iniquity of us all”. Is. 53:3-6

The Lord Jesus was the son of God and people ignored Him allowing Him to pass by. We still do that today. We don’t allow the presence of God to penetrate our daily choices and schedules. Yesterday God gave me a glimpse of my own selfishness and pride. How many times do I forget to thank Jesus for taking on my sin, heartache, and sorrow? I met a World War Two Veteran. Regardless of your political views this man was still an unsung hero.  I felt like others brushed past this man.  Isn’t that how we as a society treat the Lord Jesus? We push Him aside as if His sacrifice was commonplace. We treat the Lord Jesus as less than when He deserves all our devotion. Choose today to look beyond your agenda. Maybe God has something special for you if you would only have the eyes to see.

I was busy
And didn’t have time.

There were more items to be picked
Then could ever be done
My supervisor yelled, “don’t stop till it’s done”!

“Faster, faster keep up the speed
Keep it moving Sarah
That’s all I need”!

The words of my boss echoed strong
But I decided to stop
And talk to this man
though it might seem wrong.

He was creeping along the aisles
Amidst the harried shoppers
Who couldn’t even stop and smile

What caught my eye
Was the hat that read
WWII Vet
He was alive and not dead.

I looked at my list and all that was still undone
But I knew God had greater plans of opportunity.
Not wanting to miss His great plan
As I had done before
I abandoned my cart to talk to this man.

I didn’t speak much
Perhaps a phrase or two
I thanked the man for his service.
He said he was just looking at the discount food
That was all he came to do.

My heart broke

did nobody see

this man

a hero from history?

He hobbled away on his walker
I was afraid he might fall.
As he walked away
A tear surfaced in my eye
For this man had lived
He had not died.

He was shuffling
With his two old feet
What a miracle
He was not a defeat.

But amidst the angry shoppers
Who had no time
This hero was left unnoticed
And unrecognized.
He was simply seen as another old man
Walking around with no fanfare
Probably in someone one’s way
Not knowing they were avoiding history that day.

And I wondered if perhaps
My Jesus, Savior, and Lord
Was also overlooked
When He came to earth
People scoffed
And turned away
Not knowing they were avoiding
Saving Grace.

Thank Your Jesus
Who died for you
Who gave you, life
Remember,
He didn’t have to.

But He gave His life

because He loves you.

But also thank a vet today
Who chose to sacrifice
Who chose to pay.

Let Me Hold Your Hand Through the Shadows and Sunrises, the Storms, and Surprises.

mom
Mom, you have been my champion through all my mood swings, heartaches, and every dream across the horizon. You are a picture of a stable woman of God. I love you.
Writing Confrence 2 2017
My “aunt” Wendy is one of my mentors. She has known me from before I was born and has guided me in my writing journey. I love you!
SAM_3039
This is my dear friend Ms. Judy Stiles. She is such a picture of an elegant woman of God. I love you!

I’m thankful that God’s placed others in my life that are in different seasons. I think it’s vital because it’s God’s way of showing me that these seasons that I might think are more desirable still have their struggles. Seeing my friends struggles  allows me to see things in the proper perspective rather than a Facebook perfect frame. The young mom with little ones who are sick must learn how to reach out her hands to God. She must learn to trust Him when she feels inadequate and alone pacing the floor back and forth to soothe the earached toddler. The older lady whose husband is resisting God must cry out to God and ask Him to hold her. The single woman must learn how to trust God even when she feels marginalized or inadequate. She must allow what God says about her to  define her.

Which is why small groups and cups of coffee (full caffeine 🙂 ) are, so important for women. I’m sure they are good for men too but since I am not a man I cannot say. 🙂  It’s vital to have other women in your life who can authentically point you closer to God. I know of these women in my life. What about in you? Learning from women in my life isn’t always easy for me. I am highly independent and quite sassy at times… And I’m also learning that while I desire to learn from women that are in different seasons and therefore wiser I must also incorporate what God has taught me to younger women….Ouch……That sounds…scary……… Titus 2 talks about older women training the younger women. Nancy Demoss Wolgemuth puts it best when she says that every woman (yes even you!) is an older woman to someone. If you are a daughter of the king then it is your duty to go love on another woman. It could be someone that is about to walk the same valley you are in now. Maybe God wants you share a heartache with another woman. I’m not sure ,but be courageous enough to pour your brokenness into another soul. I have thought I was going to minister to a woman before. And in my own selfish pride I thought I was ready to give all flavors of wisdom….oh, boy did I need a large dose of humility! I went to serve but in fact this beautiful woman challenged my faith! She challenged me to trust God in deeper ways. So enter ministry with a heart of humility.

Regardless or where you are or what you’re doing you’re being an example. When you visit that site that you know is a waste of time, or buy one more dress that you know you don’t need, (guilty!) you are being example. When you choose to spend your time wisely or bite your tongue when you want to sass like crazy you are being a godly example. People that don’t know Jesus and who are younger in the faith are watching. Your co-workers, friends, and family see your life and hear your words. Does your life and words match who you claim to be? Live a life that shines JESUS. Sometimes you will stand out, but don’t be afraid. The greatest people chose to stand above the status quo because they saw what others couldn’t see. As a child of God I know things of eternal value and therefore should live and speak in accordance.

If you are God’s women, then sister you are called to women’s ministry. You are called to mother younger women in the faith. First you must tell them about Jesus. And sometimes you must keep pursuing people, just like God continued to pursue you. Don’t give up on the salvation or the growth of those God has called you to minister to. He is faithful.
“And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart” Gal. 6:9. Don’t give up on the people God has called you to minister to. And don’t give up on yourself either. You are a work in progress. If you are God’s child, then He is still fine tuning you for His glory. He continues to shape away at my selfish edges.
“Being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ…And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and discernment, that you may approve that things that are excellent, that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ, being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.” Philp 1:6, 9-11.