April 25, 2014

a dearer name

Five Minute FridayFriend

"Is there a dearer name than friend?" asked Abigail Adams.

I love that, but another question pecks at the door of my mind there a harder name than friend?

Maybe I've just always been shy. Maybe I have always been afraid. Maybe I learned to be afraid. Maybe both. Trusting is not easy for me. True, utter friendship runs deep for me.

But I write and I find courage in Him and He sends the people who change me for the best and hold me in the worst. These people:

The one who pens and shares soul by hitting "sent". The one who refuses to let me hide. The ones who make me laugh--at myself, usually, which is needed. The one who spoke first, who walks to my house in winter. The one whose feet were not made for marching, but whose heart was made for encouraging. The one who is who she is, who loves her daughter and loves people. The one who is nothing like yet so much the same as me. The one who shared pain and honesty. The one who went to Jamaica with me. The one who told me I was beautiful. The one who makes scones and tea with me while watching Sherlock. And the ones whom I love.

The One who

He knows what I need, and safe isn't really safe. Love isn't safe and neither is He and neither are they. Today I am grateful for friends.

April 23, 2014


“Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.” Isaiah 43:19  

"Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the holy places by the blood of Jesus, by the new and living way that he opened for us through the curtain, that is, through his flesh, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near." Hebrews 10:19-25


The word weaves around my heart with the Word the way the wind plays with my hair. Even so, it just occurred to me that, yes, of course! We are in the season of new, of re-new-al. Spring, which comes in low rumbles, between buckets of rain and sunshine, the growing pains of the year.

A recovering from winter. Being again covered in joy, letting grief slip away over the waters once ice now weaving steadily threads of life and abundance, shining with gloriously piercing pieces of sunlight, the way lake-ice cannot reflect. The threads spill over the dam and pull time along and I must let that one crinkled beech leaf sail bobbingly away down the tiny stream to its future and turn to mine. 

The old ways of fear must die--the fears that strike in winter, when we are cold and lonely, hiding inside. Relinquish the white-knuckled grip on the threads of time, of life, that will only leave painful, rope-burns as they pull away. 

When we hold our lives tight, we really only strangle ourselves, push our seedlings back into the dark ground, overshadowing, hiding the light. Let spring come. Let Him come near. 

I speak to myself, mostly. Draw near, for He is faithful. Don't neglect meeting together--stop hiding. Encourage. He will make a way. Trust. 

I pray for everyday Spring: to be remade, renewed, restored, redeemed.
For I need it. 

But I trust in You, O Lord; 
     I say, "You are my God,"
my times are in Your hand.
Psalm 31:14

April 17, 2014


Five Minute Friday: Glue
Five Minute Friday

so much broken.
so much torn.
we're a shredded collage
that tries to restore

aching for peace,
the ache almost
that cracks
the soul ruthlessly;
almost as much
as the sin does.

elmer's won't do--
it'll dry up,
like even the best
of friends.

the only glue
that will do
is not manufactured.

the only glue
is Ghost,
the One who seeps in
than any krazy

the only glue
is Gethsemane-pray-er,
the one who sweat blood,
who took
the cracking sins
and cracked.

the only glue
is God,
who restored,
no collage of wrappings,
no seams,
just scars.

April 11, 2014


Five Minute Friday: paint

There are many paintings I could speak on, the lovely lakes, the mellow mountains, the fantastical field.

But they are not my best paintings. Not because they are not good, but because there is a truer painting.

I remember mixing the colors. Black, mostly black, with streaks of darkened green, shadowed blue, burned red, polluted purple. I remember each color was a confession, a type of grief over my shame and guilt, and I painted and the confession was more than the words I spoke. That painting is of my broken heart. My brokenness.

But there, in the ocean of chaos, shadows and darkness is a small island dimly lit by a bright little lantern.

The lantern is Him, patiently standing in the midst of all the ugliness of who I am, shedding light, burning slowly away the edges of the darkness.

Only He can do it. I am glad He decided to plant His little lantern in me.

Your word is a lamp to my feet
and a light
to my 
Psalm 119:105

April 4, 2014


Five Minute Friday: Writer

I've been a writer since I could write. I still have some of my earliest work about a wolf who befriended a lake, and kissed her in thanks. About rabbits and foxes and small adventures made of misspelled words and the crazed new handwriting of a young girl.

Writing has sustained, kept me going. Sometimes I write to think rather than the other way around. But I haven't always believed I am a writer. There have been dear friends who have had to convince me. But they did. And so did He.

Writing not only sustains me, but can be the means to reach out and touch the wounds of others, a way of conversing with people far from me. It is a gift that I hope can be for His glory, ultimately.

But being a writer in this world is hard. Collegiate expectations are heavy, pushing postmodernism, this cynical, dark way. But I have never been good at being bullied into things. Stubbornness pervades, and I write my own joyful melancholy, the hope that He has given. He weaves it into every word, and sometimes I don't even see it until later.

Sometimes the writing bleeds out, but the best, hardest writing is honest writing.

He is faithful when we are writerly brave.