Monthly Archives: April 2022

Every house

Each house we drive by has a story unfolding inside. The chapters belong to the faces of whoever lives inside those walls. None of us knows exactly what’s happening as we blindly drive by.

It’s the girl walking down the road in her pajamas with a bloodied face and beaten up spirit.

It’s the eyes you lock with that show more raw emotion than you ever thought possible.

It’s the teen trying so hard to hide what’s happening behind closed doors. The addiction that has them trapped, but they have no idea how to crawl out of the shackle of shame.

It’s the person who grabs one more carton of ice cream and chokes it down to ease the pain inside….or the one refusing to eat at all because it’s the only thing they can control.

It’s the little child who cringes at voices. The one who’s quiet in a crowd. Over looked. Full of fear. Learning to lie to survive and even worse….starting to believe the lies about themselves.

It’s the overwhelmed mom in the store screaming at her kids. Lashing out at the wrong people for hurt someone else caused.

It’s the man in the middle of the intersection who hops out of his car to start screaming at the person behind him. A once little boy turned into a bully full of rage.

It’s the family wondering where their next meal will come from or how they’ll pay the stack of bills on the counter.

It’s the one crying in the bathroom as they harm themselves. Or looking at another negative pregnancy test…or another positive one.

It’s the one who hides in the closest trying to find a safe place to be.

It’s the addict who looks at all their pill bottles, consumed with the thought of how they can get more. How many more surgeries can they safely have. How many more doctors can they see before someone starts to connect the dots.

It’s the picture perfect family with the terrible secret. They really don’t resemble a family at all. The silence is piercing. The emotional abuse is suffocating.

It’s the one all alone.

It’s the house full of joyful drinking. But the drinks are no longer an option. Lives are being controlling by them.

It’s the one who acts like they’re strong, but they know what others don’t. Words and actions don’t match.

It’s the freedom fighter who isn’t really free themselves.

It’s the one who can barely crawl out of bed some days. The pain is too much. Everyone else is to blame for how they got there. They are trapped in their own reality.

It’s the grieving soul. Struggling to make it through the next minute. Shattered. Lost. Broken.

It’s the one who never follows through. There’s been no growth in years. Just excuses. The mountain of lies took years to build.

It’s the overworked. Striving for some false type of success that is never achieved. Ten years go by. Then twenty. And five more. The work never stopped and now there’s no time left.

It’s the one wondering why no one sees what’s happening.

It’s the person burying all their hurt. They feel like they have to or it will swallow them when in fact it already has.

It’s the one who bought into the hustle mentality. Seeing each person as a potential prospect. Frantic from one month to the next trying to reach quotas and missing out on genuine relationships and the very people around them.

It’s the one left with only photos to look at.

It’s the person who can’t take one more empty apology…or never gets one at all.

It’s the person who is always the victim. Always suffering at the hands of others. Always giving themselves permission to stay right where they’re at.

It’s the one reading their diagnosis for the tenth time. Hoping somehow someway, if they stare at it long enough it’ll change.

It’s the parent who’s overtaken with grief. They haven’t seen their child in years and have to face that they may never again. Or… they stand beside a grave marked with the name they chose for their child. And it just doesn’t seem real.

It’s the one who knows scripture but won’t let it transform them.

It’s the person always taking care of everyone else as they continue to weaken from lack of self care.

It’s the one saying I’ll get to that tomorrow, but tomorrow never comes.

It’s the one full of fear and anxiety trying to make it through each day. Stuck in the cycle of trying the same thing over and over.

It’s one the who still hears the taunting voices of others twenty years later. The one who let their identity become what others falsely claimed.

It’s the one who never got to say goodbye.

It’s the one curled in a ball praying with all their might.

It’s the one who just can’t take anymore. The one who’s tried to save her family and lost herself in the process. The one seeking answers, any answers. Something to make all this stop.

It’s the one who’s always right. So right that they’ve pushed everyone away.

It’s the one who can’t out run, or exercise away the ache inside.

It’s the tear stained pillows.

It’s the hardened hearts.

It’s the spouse left with once was while they face what is.

It’s the abuse cycle being passed down from one generation to the next.

It’s the person sitting in the chair. Frozen. Wondering how this could have happened.

It’s the one trying to start over. Trying to put back the pieces of their life.

It’s the one experiencing horrific things that no person ever should.

It’s the one who’s lost all hope, and has no one who’ll listen.

It’s the person who was so hurt by their church that they now blame God.

Every house, every person has a story. Cars may sit outside. Toys may be in the yard. But inside things are happening that no one sees.

Thankfully there are many houses where things are ok inside. My fear is there are too many where things aren’t. How often do we miss what needs to be seen.

It’s easy to head to our next destination with schedules and activities on our minds. What if during all that busyness we paused and took time to pray for every house we drove past.

You never know how badly someone inside might need it!

And if you’re one of the unseen…I’m so sorry. Do you know how I could write these potential scenarios? Because I’ve lived at a few of these addresses. And the one thing I want you to hear is this- there really is a God who loves you and sees you. He is very near. Circumstances won’t always make sense, but He can be trusted. In my hardest moments is when I feel His deepest love.

If you need help please reach out. You don’t have to suffer in silence.

Wrapped in His grace,


Healing hope

There are days I barely recognize my life. This wasn’t the picture I had in my mind all those years ago when my kids were small. Things were never perfect, but we had a rhythm that was at a minimum predictable. Until it wasn’t and the unraveling began.

There are times when no matter how hard you try to keep all the pieces together they just won’t fit. Some fall to the ground, some get lost and some fray along the edges.

I think as females we try to hold everything together, but our arms get so full we just can’t do it. We believe the lie that we’ve failed instead of understanding we are limited in our human capabilities.

I thought if I just tried harder or a different way that eventually things would get better. I could see my efforts coming up pretty empty, and I prayed for the Lord to fill in the gaps that were being left.

I’ve always struggled with “not good enough” thinking. I thought if I did enough then I could be enough. In being enough I would be accepted as enough. It’s a crazy circle of enough. One that never stops spinning. All of it was so far from the truth. More importantly, it couldn’t have been further from His Truth.

None of us can ever be good enough. That’s why we need Him. If my identity is in my roles or tasks, then it’s terribly misplaced. My identity has everything to do with Him and nothing to do with me. If I don’t live out my days from that true identity, I’ll always feel like I’m falling short.

You know….it’s funny, looking back I never really had a vision too far ahead in the future. I’ve been taking it day by day for years. Oh, trust me, I had ideals and dreams…but I kept those tucked away in a safe place.

Maybe you know that place. Where no one else can crush or sabotage your dream.

I kept them neatly arranged right next to the Lord. He knew every single one. What I didn’t do was pray about each of them. They were my thoughts and things I hoped for, but not things I sought His direction with.

When some of those things started falling apart, I realized just because He let me put them there didn’t mean He was holding them in his care. They weren’t part of His plan. They were part of mine.

In the blink of an eye the day by day has become years gone by. Back then days felt so long. Now years feel incredibly short.

I can’t make human sense out of a lot of what happens. This is what I do know…every generation makes choices that effect the next. Each person’s choices impacts others. And wounds will be present.

Sicknesses, tragedies, abandonment, death, accidents, addictions, abuse, losses, all the unplanned are rarely seen as a reality on the horizon. When they hit it causes a shattering.

As awful as those things are I can tell you it was in those places where I learned the most about changes I needed to make. Each and every one took away more of me so there could be more of Him. And it still is, because refining never ends.

Verses like 2 Corinthians 5:17 and Colossians 3:1-4 lead me back to the thoughts I need to have in my mind. Thoughts that bring life, not death.

None of us can force someone else to see, own and make needed changes. We can’t stop accidents or disease from happening. We can’t undo what someone else has done. We can’t be the glue that holds everything together….but there is One who can.

In the midst of all the hurt is healing hope. His wounds ushered in healing for all.

I may never see restoration in some areas, but that doesn’t mean it’s not possible. There is nothing beyond His reach. Nothing and no one.

Some days I open my eyes and am exhausted before the day even starts. My mind races with “how long, Lord, how long.” I can’t tell you how many times my morning bible study and devotions hit right at the core of my weariness. He meets me right where I’m at.

Other days I’m able to start out with a heart of gratitude.

I wish I could tell you I anticipated each day and had eyes immediately ready to see all the blessings. Right now those days are on the rare side as I sit in the waiting. What I haven’t done is give up. I know with each new day comes a fresh filling of mercy that gifts me with His guidance and help for my thinking.

“Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart be courageous. Wait for the Lord.” Psalm 27:14

Jesus willingly endured the cross to make all things right. There was pain and heartache. And suffering. Because of what He did I’m able to get through pain and heartache. And suffering.

Psalm 121

If you are surrounded by circumstances that have you heavy laden please don’t give up. He is the God of all hope and he’s right by your side!

Romans 15:13 “Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you believe so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (CSB)

I know it can feel hard to find hope when so much heaviness is surrounding you. My prayer for you is that you’ll find comfort in His word and in his presence.

“Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take up my yoke and learn from me, because I am lowly and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30

I don’t know if you’ve ever seen a yoke in action but if both animals don’t move together it doesn’t work. They have to go in the same direction and speed. One can’t get in front of the other or there’s no momentum. It’s the same if one pulls, lags behind or turns their head. There must be a unison effort. A more experienced animal is paired with one that needs direction and guidance.

Guess who needs direction and guidance? Yep, I’m the girl with her hand raised! When I try to go ahead of Jesus, do things in my own effort or take off in a different way I lack His peace and rest.

Those verses are incredibly personal and specific. Jesus knows we will be heavy laden and weary and invites us to come. To come to Him. We don’t have to walk alone. The world is a hard place to be. We can yoke with Him and he will help us make it through.

I want to learn from Him in the waiting. I need to learn from Him. If you’re in the waiting there’s space for you right next to me. We can wait and learn together.

Because He lives you and I can make it through today and face tomorrow. Never forget that! All Because He lives!

Resting with Jesus,