Tidings of Comfort and Joy in March

God gives and gives and gives and gives again. I am already anticipating the holiday season. I love that we savor that season as long as we can. We give thanks for the year and then we prepare our hearts to celebrate the Life who gives us life. We celebrate the birth of Jesus on Christmas Day and it’s such a beautiful time for our souls to pause and remember.

But God isn’t bound by our holiday season. He doesn’t stop giving when the season is over. He continues on just as He always has. Bestowing good gifts. Holding us in steadfast favor. Loving us fully and deeply. Pouring out mercy which never ends, but still begins again with every new morning. Weaving our every ordinary day in grace. Sewing our broken hearts with His nearness.

Our God goes on giving…on and on and on.

But here I am sitting in March. Feeling those pinpricks of discouragement. And then it overwhelms me. I’m sitting there saying, “I don’t know what I should do to turn my day around.” I don’t really pray or ask God for help. I just sit there wondering what on earth I am going to do to turn my Saturday around.

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The Girl with the Headaches

We always want our circumstances to change our seasons, but it is God who would rather change the seasons in our souls to change us to be more like Him. In these ever-changing seasons of the soul, we learn to sing, I have tasted and seen that the Lord is good! It is well with my soul. And we are surprised because we mean every word!

At 15, I was pushed into the world of chronic pain. Headaches had always been a part of my life since a very young age, but by the age of 15, the headaches became a permanent fixture in my life. I lived as the girl with the headaches and I couldn’t see past the pain–not really. You can read more about my struggle and the emotional onset of my chronic pain in my book, A Pygmy’s Life for Me.

But throughout these nine years of pain, the seasons in my soul have shifted drastically and for the better. Nothing has stayed the same though I am in the same trial of physical pain. There has been an ebb and flow of chronic pain, many incredible life events, added trials much harder for me than physical pain itself, and yet nothing in these nine years has placed my soul in a stuck position–because God doesn’t ask His children to live stuck lives. Ever. Read more

More Than Watercolor Grace

The  beautiful thing is God’s grace meets us as we are and does not leave us as we are. God loves us far too much to let us stay as the women we once were. God’s grace isn’t just a pretty word. His grace runs far deeper than watercolor or a brush of butterfly wings. He is Mercy upon our poor reactions, Comfort within our recluse structures, and Refuge in our chaos. And a grace we never have to work for works in us. It is impossible to truly explain the depth, the complexity, and the wonder of God’s grace!

But as we rest under God’s unmerited favor, He begins to change us to become more like Him. For our good. For His glory. From His love.

If not for God, we would be forever frozen in our old ways…stuck in a sedentary life. But His grace is more. More than a pretty watercolor quote. More than a brush of butterfly wings. More than a pretty self-help book that makes us feel good. No, His grace reaches deep into our gritty seasons where we are buried and pulls us upward–to hope, to victory, to change. Here we are shedding layers of who we used to be while we rest favored and secure in God (Titus 2:11-15). Read more

You Are Not the Forgotten Woman

I know you, because I am just like you. And I don’t care how different your life looks from mine or the diversity of our valleys. You are me. And I am you. In so many ways.

These words are for you.It’s like the darkest place you’ve ever been, right? Like you could suffocate or be crushed in an instant. It’s like you’re walking in a hard place next to people who are rubbing salt in your wounds. Like the cold, impersonal floor knows your tears better than anyone else. It’s like questions that grab you and shake you and say, is God actually good? It’s like sitting in church and being unable to sing. Like you’re surrounded by fear on every side.

So yes, we know each other.

And I need you to hear this.

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