Monday, August 29, 2011

Holy Spirit..old school style

     I had an incredible encounter with God last night. The kind that left me electrified to point I was trembling and overwhelmed with emotion. It was a night like the old revivals without the sawdust floors and open air tents. The kinds of services where children and adults alike laugh, bawl, and fall out under the move of God. It was amazing! And I realize I miss that…I miss the power of
God, and even more I miss that feeling of deep satisfaction after experiencing the Holy Spirit. The experience that compels you to look any skeptic in the eye and boldly said, “I don’t care what you call it. The Holy Spirit is real and alive.”
     Don’t get me wrong…I appreciate the way the church has sought balance and seeker friendly services. I like how now we can wear jeans to Sunday services and take coffee INTO the auditorium. And I love how we have welcomed, more and more, the unlovely, the broken and even the hated into our church families. I feel these are vast improvements and have helped cultivate more real and safe environments….but what’s the balance? Have we sacrificed one only to create an imbalance in another?
     I can tell you one thing: it took only one encounter, one moment, one touch from God and His power to remind me that I miss the Holy Spirit. Not the chills, the crazy reactions or powerful winds…..the Holy Spirit - His comfort, His peace and His counsel. Have we really become so turned off or intimidated by the workings of the Holy Spirit that we ask Him to sit on the back row and only come  when He absolutely has to? Well, again I will say it, I miss Him…and I feel compelled to say we will need the Holy Spirit more in the coming days.
    The Holy Spirit is the person of the Trinity that reveals the voice and purpose of God. It’s the Holy Spirit that counsels, leads and convicts us of God’s heart and spirit. And yes, He even gets us closer to God through tangible experiences and manifestations. And I’m sorry but what’s intimidating about that? Have we…or let me take it home….have I become on independent that I can no longer understand the remarkable gift that is the Holy Spirit? Have I become so selfish and intoxicated with this world that no longer require God’s help, instruction or conviction? Have I become so preoccupied with being a creator that I forget I’m the creation?

Survival Plan

Read my Bible - Psalms 27

Worship - yes
 Work out - nope....just my ears

Do something for someone else - had a send off for a sweet client

Do something for myself - was able to spend time with a friend

Eat well - ummmm....I think so....wait maybe

Emotional state: content

High point: bought MAC makeup and had lunch with Amy

Low point: discover my puppy had chewed up two of my blinds

Tip of the day:  what we focus on becomes our reality

Friday, August 26, 2011

wait for it, wait for it.....KISS HER ALREADY!

    This week has been emotionally hard for me...and, honestly, I have no idea why. Ever had one of those weeks? In the natural everything seems good and moving forward. Work has been busy, my circle of friends strengthens and grows, and I live in a beautiful state and home near my family. Sooooo what's gives?
    Well, I did notice that I had to "wait" on many times this past week...and I can not stand waiting. I don't like waiting for the phone to ring. I don't like waiting for my dog to poop (it seriously takes forever some days). I don't like sitting in my office waiting for my next client. I don't even like waiting for the good parts in movies (KISS HER ALREADY). And I definitely don't like waiting for the future. Wait....waiting for the future? Why does that irritate me?
    I wonder if it has to do with my fear of the future, and maybe waiting means (to me) I could be doing something else to help move faster towards the future. (Side note: when I'm saying "future" I'm not thinking of some far way time or land. The actual word appears in my head but it's fuzzy, sparkling and rippling. As though it's some magical, unattainable word, like a carrot being dangled in front of a horse. lol) But WHAT am I trying to move towards? What's the fear?
    Sigh! Honestly, my fear is my reality. I am once again single, without a family, trying to make friends and very tired of working on myself so I can be happy and attractive. Ouch! Okay, so based on rereading the previous statement, waiting means to me that I am just sitting back and hoping the fulfillment of my dreams come true. I mean I guess that's what it means to me. I'm not trusting God. I am not trusting His understanding of my situation, my pain, the state of my heart and desires. Ugh..back to Sunday school for me. Wait, trust, patience, relax....sounds intimidating to me. And what do I do when I'm intimidated? CONTROL! (The plot thickens) So....something happens and I have to wait. I get irritated or restless and attempt to figure out how I could be out doing something else (working out to help me be more attractive or meeting a new friend so I'm less lonely) to move me towards the "future" and away from my reality. Well that's quite a humbling revelation.

Survival Plan

Read my Bible - not yet today

"In the day when I cried out,m YOU answered me, and made me bold with strength in my soul." Psalms 138:3

Worship - ugh i wish I have

Work out - nope....unless a lot of walking up and down three flights of stairs plus cleaning all day counts.

Do something for someone else - offered to buy the soda and lemonade for the Legacy Chapel BBQ

Do something for myself - taking a night off

Eat well - cooking a healthy version of Beef Stew

Emotional state: humbled and reflective

High point: booked my ticket to DC

Low point: paying bills

Tip of the day:  a clean, organized space helps the mind and body relax

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Friends For A Season, Friends for A Reason

Day...oh who knows these days!

    A friend once told me "some friends are there for a reason and some are there for a season." Weirdly enough this was a friend that I'm no longer close to, but the truth still sticks...and I thought a lot about it today. I feel blessed, because I've spent the day (in class) and dinner laughing and talking with new friends....friends that could be both.
    During the day, I discovered I sat next to Elvis Presley's pastor's son. lol (Try that five times fast.) He's a man well into his 60's that has quite a few interesting stories. Then I had dinner with three new friends, one is which is from China. We had amazing laughs about her adventures in America and mine in China. Such awesome belly laughs and deep, thoughtful moments in both cases. And I couldn't help but think....I'm grateful for friends that are "sometimes just for a season....and who knows the reason"
    Honestly, I know that I would not have been able to make it through this without the "friends for a reason." They are the ones that look me in the eyes and tell me the truth and still love me...because they know me and want the best for me and my future. They take my midnight calls and listen to my roller coaster days. I know their daily struggles and the confessions that need grace and understanding. They are my God reason (many times) for remembering that I was put on this earth to love and live for others.'s the friends for the season...that help for all the times in between....almost like anethestic or rather electro shock for who God wants me to be. I can even apply this to my clients (I hate calling them this by the's why you'll hear me refer to them as my girls, or teens, or kids).
     I've seen some clients for a while...and they are constant reminders and encouragement. Then there are those clients that are like flashes in the pan. They don't last long, but for some reason or other they remind me to stay sharp, close to the Holy Spirit, and current. They are quick and lively, not always leaving happy or "fixed," but marked (for both of us) nonetheless. And each experience...even if I don't always recall everything it pushed me to be better, want better and know better. Toknow there is higher, deeper, wider places to venture.
     So my recent "friends for a season," meaning those that i know are only there for the duration of my class or stint of their internship..I'm reminded...the world is an interesting, diverse, deep and colorful place. I'm reminded God really is in control (I mean how many people sit next to someone that actually knew Elvis Presley). And sometimes, I think, only to remind me that the world is a big place..and destiny can occur in the most unlikely places. AND destiny doesn't have to mean a destination it can be a moment, a memorial that moves us forward...sparking the memory of how God can do anything, at anytime, through anyone.
My Survival Plan

Read my Bible - Psalms 34 and 37

"In the day when I cried out,m YOU answered me, and made me bold with strenght in my soul." Psalms 138:3

Worship - ugh i wish I have

Work out - nope....although my brain is fried

Do something for someone else - paid for dinner for a friend

Do something for myself - took a class to expand my horizones


Emotional state: happy

High point: laughed, laughed from my belly

Low point: reality, reality, reality

Tip of the day:  mystery is magic

Monday, August 15, 2011

Full Moon?

There is beauty in humility, pain in love, sacrifice in giving, and purpose in living!

     Is there a full moon? I'm not sure how much of "that stuff" I believe in, but it just seems something is in the air. I had more friends and family tell me about crazy things that have happened to them in the last couple of days then I can remember in a while. A friend's house got robbed, another friend has been trying to help a suicidal neighbor, my brother's family came down with the stomach flu,  etc. And unfortunately it was a wake up call for me...."Hey Bone're not the only one going through something right now." Even crazier....the world becomes very small and lifeless when it's all about me. Then when I find out something else (and in this case a lot of somethings) is going on it's a deer caught in the headlight look from me. "You mean the world is still existing without me?" lol  I wonder if that's not a huge trap of the enemy?
    I'm not trying to invalidate my reality right now (because it's SUCKS)...but I this a normal scheme of the devil? We get so obsessed and focused on our own pain that we can not see the forest through the trees? I'm grateful for the lessons I have learned...that when I need help it's okay to rely on others, see the red flags for what they are, trust yourself and friends.....but it's not okay to forget that we are all apart of a bigger picture. Yes, there are seasons for everything...and it's okay to grieve, it's okay to need time to focus on self, and it's okay to even disappear for a time to work through things...It fact it's my time to die (metaphorically speaking) and mourn....BUT when we are eternally does much of that change? The focus I mean.
    I don't want to focus solely on myself. Don't get me wrong...I need the focus to work on a few things that need major tweeking...but focusing only on me causes me to forget the reason I'm love God and live for others. To further the kingdom and beat the crap out of Satan's plan to diminish the people of God.  I think Satan wants us to get preoccupied with ourselves and our mess so that we are so bound we can't aid in the freedom of others. Believe me I KNOW this is easier "typed" then practiced....there are days I don't want to get out of bed much less listen to one of teens talk about their dysfunctional relationships or a friend rehash some daily difficulty...but it's in those moments I have to remember..."I am confident of this..I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living." Psalm 27:13. I must remember...if even one of my teens walks away free and can lead others into freedom....the struggle was worth it. If a friend felt wanted and understood maybe they will be more engaged with their child or husband. This puts me in a place of humility and responsibility. It also allows me a place to openly receive the help I need but also understand that place will be called upon in the learn now...learn deeply and heal fully.

My Survival Plan

Read my Bible - Psalms 34 and 37

"Psalms 27:13, "I am confident of this, that I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living."

Worship - nope....but I will

Work out - yes 50 minutes...but I just purchased and tried "Turbo Jam" from it

Do something for someone else - sent a fun card to a friend

Do something for myself - went out with a old college buddy

Eat well - probably not

Emotional state: happy

High point: went tanning and told the tanning salon I won't be renewing my

Low point: reality check about my self-absorption lately

Tip of the day:  a merry heart, doth good like a medicine...LAUGH

Friday, August 12, 2011

"Let's get ready to rumble"

Day 670 (I have no idea what day it

     Ever wonder why we feel the need to defend ourselves? Lately, I have wondered why I felt the need to "stick up for myself" to people that hardly know me; even those that I could care less what their opinions are now. Maybe worse I want to defend my "honor" and sanity from those that have chosen their opponent (well obviously), hearing only one side of the story . lol It's funny in ways, but it isn't. It's amazing to me how much my self-preservation kicks in when I hear "you're crazy", "TO religious" or friendships will be ended if he ever thought of reconciliation (his friends not mine)...I can't help but go into defensiveness. The need to explain my side of the story, rescue my sanity, my reality. Defend my reputation.
   Today I sat across from an "authority figure" (if you will)...drilling me with questions and information that related to a situation that happened months and months ago (unrelated to my marriage). It occurred to me...this person doesn't even care what my actual feelings or reality at this moment, they only care about the past...or the "details" that described that situation...then acted genuinely surprised when I answered with feeling or opinion that did not line up with the "idea" they had already formulated or "thought" was truth. (please excuse any attempt to talk in code...I'm not trying to but at the same time I'd like to keep things private..and this is unrelated to my marriage and divorce). Then the last question the "authority figure" asked me was, "how do you feel about being in this situation?" And I instantly responded, "Judged, annoyed and unaware." The "authority figure" blinked and finally, for the first time, looked away from her computer screen at me and asked, "really?" I just smiled and responded, "how could I not?"
      Then I went to lunch with a wise friend, and she reminded me that we can not live in the past nor live out others preceptions of us or our actions. She said "you either live in the past, the present or the future, but most of the time God is not camped out in the past, so then who are you living for?" In her story she had come out of a long term, compromising relationship when she met her (now) husband. She claimed she knew almost instantly he was the one. It was hard for her to leave a current relationship (although strikingly wrong for her) and move into what she instantly felt was right (and in the end it was hard for both of them)....but they both came to the past (what we came out of) worth sacrificing what we feel God wants for us?

       Okay pause...I feel like I've miss a step in the story. I left the office of the previous situation feeling dejected, unknown and uncared about. It felt as though there was nothing that I could say that would ever justify my past or even defend who I am now. So when I met with my friend for was revelation for me that my past (and therefore those that judge from the past) does not define who I am now or who I want to be. God does not live in the past...He uses the past to move us forward.
      So what was my revelation? I realized I have been trying so hard to defend my past actions and decisions. To justify my feelings because somehow they would bridge my past to my present....and even explain the future. That if I could reconcile my past it would somehow credentialize current decisions or feelings. But in the end...what am I fighting for? Am I trying to make myself look good in the past or move forward with God's future for me? Am I trying to reconstruct walls and ideas that no longer apply or am I attempting to just be who I am, who I know God says I am...or am I fighting for a reputation that I feel has to be maintained or defended?

My Survival Plan

Read my Bible - James 1

Worship - nope

Work out - Turbo Jam (Cardio Party)

Do something for someone else - avoid, avoid, avoid...and if you knew the situation BELIEVE me you'd agree this was IN FACT doing something for

Do something for myself - took the night off

Eat well - Yep...I think so

Emotional state: grateful and inspired

High point: my nephew just has the flu or something like that...

Low point: ugh, spent a 100.00 dollars on some really, really stupid things that I HAVE to pay for 

Tip of the day:  small, sentimental gifts can make such a difference 

Saturday, August 6, 2011

My Jane Eyre days

"Have I become nothing to you? Am I machine without feelings? Do you think because I am poor, obscure, plain and little that I am soul-less and heartless? I have as much soul as you and full as much heart, and if God had blessed me with beauty and wealth I could make it as hard for you to leave me as it is for I to leave you." Jane Eyre by Bronte

Day 52

     I've been rather quiet these days. I can't say why or how but I've enjoyed my days that would probably look a lot like lonely, pitiful cry fest. Watching "Jane Eyre" and slasher joke. They aren't really cry fest....I hardly cry at all, but what I've noticed is that I can not muster the emotional strength to entertain others. Then I that how I've always felt about being a social person? That I am entertaining them? What does that even mean? Then I panic. Have I lost myself completely. I love people...and I love this drought, this weird, non-effort to it here to stay? God, please, I hope not!
     I watched "Jane Erye" three times today (please keep all judgemental thoughts to yourself). Something stuck out to me. Jane was so use to being disappointed yet immensely believed in herself that she ran away at the first real heart break of her life. Ultimately she comes back around...but to even more wreckage then she left. And I so identify with the character and the reality that I will now probably be faced with. "Not only my own heartbreaks but others as in men in the dating world. I have such compassion and forgiveness, but am I ready for that? Do I want that? Do I want to feel less than so i connect with a seeking heart?
     I entered my marriage for many different reasons, but regardless I entered feeling pure, wanted and untainted. Now, I feel as though i'm entering the world experienced, ruined, marked and tired. Pretty pathetic huh? And it's hard...because I can't be the one that sits around and wallows in her misery, drinking and eating excessively all day. I recognize the responsiblities I have in my teens, friends and future. But I also can't be the woman that denies her pain and won't allow herself grace through the trauma. (Geez am I babbling now?)
    So how do I hold on? How do I hold on to my purpose, my heart, the woman I know God has called me to be? How do I move forward when I can't see anything clearly or promising? When so much of my heart and life picture has to die yet I somehow have to find the strength to believe for something new?
     Something new? I'm so tired of praying for my Boaz. I'm heart sick over even imagining someone would want me much less think i'm worthy of the chase anymore. Don't get me wrong...there will always be men. There will always be those that are interested...but I've tired of that journey. I don't even have the ability to hang on to picture of hope and redemption that lays buried in my heart of hearts. Am I worthy of redemption? And even if I I have the energy or heart to engage? This is my reality today!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Ever seen "Country Strong"

Day 51

   Have you ever seen the movie "Country Strong?" Wow! I saw it in a class setting so it was extremely difficult for me not to fully express myself...which was uncontrollable crying. What a sad, but powerful movie. I think the theme that stuck out to me the most was the lack of caring and empathy on the part of the husband towards Kelly. The other was how she lost herself to this life that didn't care about her but only what she could produce and offer. Then her husband and other business associates acted shocked when she became an alcoholic and started to sleep with everyone in sight....looking for a reprieve or a moment of escape and acceptance.
     Believe you me....she was a grown adult...who should have looked to healthier avenues for comfort...but I sympathized with her journey. How can people to claim to love her abandon her when she needed them most? And then when they return after she's gone through, what they preceive as, the hardest part they start to try to understand her struggles. When is it ever okay for that to happen? But then I think....maybe they couldn't handle it. When things are good..they are good...and when things are's when you find out who your real friends are...who really cares about your life.
      I am so grateful for my friends. I'm grateful that even through poor decisions, bad mistakes or unlikely circumstances my friends have prayed, stood and crawled with me. My best friend reminded me today that I can lean on my friend's faith, my friends prayers, my friends love to carry me. And when I watched "Country Strong" I think that is what made me the most sad. The most devoted person in Kelly's life was the long term affair. Someone who saw through the fame and glamour and witnessed the the torn, broken person underneath. Saw the talented, lovely woman that needed acceptance and redemption...and at the end of the day...someone who could stand by her side and guide her when she couldn't see for herself. Lord, thank you for allowing friends like that in my life. Those that can see for me when I can't. Those that will remind me who I am when I need to be reminded.

My Survival Plan

Read my Bible - haven't today, but I will

Worship - nope....but I will

Work out - not today

Do something for someone else - bought brunch for a new friend

Do something for myself - stay in on date night

Eat well - well...I haven't cooked but I had an amazing breakfast sandwich

Emotional state: confused

High point: realized I am soooooo blessed to have two best friends and a mom that are there for me when I really need them

Low point: turned down a date

Tip of the day:  dior iconic black mascara is amazing!!!