when i am weak.

When I feel weak,

I come to

your arms,

And lean in,

To your strength.

In that place,

With your arms around me,

I am safe,


I am loved



As I walk out our side door this afternoon with my kids, I breathe in the fresh air as an elixir.  As one who has been stuck in the house for a week with what we can only guess as the flu, the blue sky, the trees and the grass feel like an open expanse of freedom to me.  I look into the sky and feel like I could get lost in it, in a good way.

I have never had a “word for the year” before but this year I decided to try it.  I decided if one came easily I would try it, but if none came, I wouldn’t force it.  So, on my couch one afternoon, vulnerable came to mind.  I have desired in this season to be vulnerable, something that is so not always easy, right?  But vulnerable felt like kind of a complex word to focus on so I looked up vulnerable in Webster.  One of the synonyms for vulnerable was the word open.  This was much more simple and easier to focus my mind on.  So, OPEN, it was.  Being open feels scary in a way but then it is also very much like the blue sky that I stared into this afternoon.  It is freedom.  This is what I want, freedom.

May I…

Be open to days looking different or seasons not meeting my expectations.  For that matter,may I be open to let go of expectations when I realize I even have them.  This is what I realized I needed to do this very morning.

Be open to lingering longer with a kid at bedtime, does rushing make it really go any faster?  Yes, I want my own time.  Perhaps being open is really saying yes.  Saying yes to what is important.  In this case, its saying yes to the sacred moments before bed with my child.  My own time is important too, but I do see when I don’t try to rush, it goes pretty much at the same speed but my soul is in a better place!

Be open to go slower when I want to go fast and go fast when I want to go slow.

Be open to the different, CHANGE, the uncomfortable, the good,and the truth.

Be open to love and the Word and looking in the eye when I want to look away.

Be open to imperfection, and the rest and beauty it will bring.  Perfection is not all what it is cracked up to be.

Be open to think new thoughts.

Be open to be gentle with myself when I want to be my own harsh critic.  Can I not choose to be my own cheerleader already?!

Be open for things to be better and more beautiful than I could ever imagine.

Anna McParlan of @alonginlandsea on Instagram said this, “We grow most in the seasons of surrender-when we release our clenched fists and let God plant exactly what He wants in our open hands.  It will bloom in its time.  It always does.”.

Yes to that.  So, here I am, with my open hands, my open heart and my open mind.    Here I am, open.


Right Now.

Upon reading over my January entries in my journal today, I came to this quote, “Give your ENTIRE attention to what God is doing RIGHT NOW (all emphasis is mine), and don’t get worked up about what MAY or MAY NOT happen TOMORROW.”  I read through my past month as I move into the new month.  It honestly helps me to remember what stood out as important or what impressed itself on my soul, because I often forget quicker than I would imagine.


Give your ENTIRE attention to what God is doing RIGHT NOW.  Entire is a lot.  It means to have no element or part left out according to Webster.  In other words, it means WHOLE.  Give your WHOLE attention to what God is doing.  Do not have even one iota of your attention on any other thought,or any other pursuit but have every part of your mind on what God is doing.  Whoa.  


So, focusing my attention on what God is doing is evidently important, right?  I can hear the next question you have, because it was mine too, so what is God doing right now?  How can I know what God is doing right now?


There are times when I know, I just know without a shadow of a doubt that God is speaking.  This usually happens when I am taking a walk or doing some task, not expecting anything and suddenly I sense it, a phrase or an assurance of an idea that feels like it pops into my brain.  There is a yes in my mind that agrees with what I “hear”.  When I am hoping for an answer, often anxious about it, I don’t feel like I hear anything to be honest.  Mostly, I sense to trust God.


In this example, I actually had written this verse Matthew 6:34 from the Message not on only one page, but I had written it twice!  I had not remembered the second time that I had written it.  I also had written a box around it as a way of highlighting it BOTH times.  When I see something repeated, usually it is a theme that is repeated, not actually the same verse, I know that it is something to pay attention to.  In this case, it actually repeated to pay attention to what God is doing right now!  What He is doing is giving me this verse from Matthew 6:34 right now.  Oh, and not to forget the second half of the verse, because that is included in the repetition, He says, “and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow.  I so often have a script playing out in my mind if something would happen or trying to prepare myself for something that may or may not happen.  This part of the verse speaks to my overactive mind and imagination, that I have a permission slip to not get overworked or should I say, over fixated on it?


This gets even better!  A week or so after I wrote the verse for the second time, I go to church.  Guess what my pastor said right at the beginning of his sermon?  He said, “God is at work in your life RIGHT NOW (Yes, I had those last two words in all caps in my journal, just like the verse was written both times in my journal.)  It’s almost like God would know (He does know us.)  I would question if he was really working in my life right now.  Can you really pay attention to something you are not sure that He is doing?  No.  So, in that case, He makes it clear to me that He is indeed speaking.  Perhaps He is getting my attention so that when He does speak, I am ready.  I am not sure what He wants me to focus on, but after writing this, I am even more ready to know!  


I do not share this to say this is how it will work in your life when God speaks.  I am not giving you a five step formula but rather an example of how it could actually play out in your real life.  I wouldn’t have remembered any of this if I hadn’t journaled and if I hadn’t gone back to read my journal.  So, it may be a shameless plug for writing things down.  


Know that God is indeed working in your life, despite all the circumstances that are playing out in your life right now.  He wants you to know to put your whole mind on what he is doing right now and not on what may or may not happen tomorrow.

…Words of Life

Dear One,

Jesus stopped for the one, he will stop for you.  He is never too busy.  He always has the time for you.

He pays attention to me, and he will pay attention to you.  He doesn’t play favorites, but yet, you are his favorite.

Jesus is your help,your healer and he takes delight in you.  He is there at all hours of the day and in every circumstance.  He doesn’t shake his head at you when you make mistakes but he looks you straight in the eyes and he smiles at you, because you make him smile.  You do.  You really do.

Walk in these words of life today.