my weekend

As children and even as adults, we look to our fathers for not only love but support, validation, security, and acceptance. I know as a young women I needed to hear words from my dad like “You are beautiful” and “I love you.” But that isn’t the way my life has turned out and those are not the words this young teenage girl heard. The words I remember from my dad were “I’m leaving.”

This weekend I chose to attend the visitation of my father. He passed away last week at the age of 68 from multiple, serious strokes. I wasn’t sure what I would do when he died. Would I go to his funeral? Maybe I would not go and have my own moment of silence? Well, I chose to go. Not out of obligation but for myself.

Attending his visitation was like being a part of the funeral of a stranger or someone I only knew from a distant memory. And coming away actually provided much clarity for me. I feel a sense of closure and peace that I had not before. A burden of my life has been lifted and a stain wiped clean. I realized that although my earthly dad may be gone my Heavenly Father is alive. He is active and present in my life. He is good and always for me.

About 45 minutes from the location of my father’s services is the cemetery where my mother was buried almost exactly one year ago. The anniversary of her death is January 27th. I  ended my weekend by remembering not what was void in my life but by celebrating what was present. A loving mother. A gift of God. As God would have it, the sun was shining right on her even in the cold, barrenness of this winter season. It was an appropriate picture of this season of my life.



every season…a declaration

I need a lot of permission.

Permission to go.

Permission to stop.

Permission to strive or cease.

Permission to be or not to be.

It comes with the territory of being uber-responsible. It’s a curse really!

My challenge is living in the real freedom of Christ for which I have been given. How do I live in freedom from sin, from the demands of this world and freedom from myself? The Bible says it way better than I can…..

Romans 7:23-25(nlt)

But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me.  Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death?  Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord.

God has already created a way for me to live in His freedom. It’s Jesus. Not Jesus and my striving. Jesus alone.

This all goes back to permission. I am learning to give myself permission to stop the striving. Cease the doing and the urge to always GO….to always be producing or creating something. I have decided to give myself permission to stop striving and permission to live in the gift of the freedom that has already been given to me on the cross. The freedom of THIS moment. I declare it!

I am in a new season of life. This year I have lost my mother, one of my best friends. For a while I lost my health. I have lost a job working with a team I dearly cared for and now I am in a another kind of loss. A loss of security, a sense of home and comfort and even love. I know God is allowing this season for His purposes and I can already see it. Yet, it still is difficult and the pain is real.

I intend to embrace each season for it’s intended purpose. Right now, the purposes for many of the losses of 2012 have yet to be revealed. They may never be known. But God is still God and He is still good. I will continue to trust Him. I declare it!

God continues to use the Matt Maher song Hold Us Together in my life this year to remind me of His goodness. The bridge says….

This is the first day of the rest of your life. 

Even in the dark you can still the light. 

It’s gonna be alright. 

God’s mercies are new every morning.

His light is always brighter than the darkness.

He is good.

He has already made a way for freedom.

And it really is gonna be alright.

I declare it!

Lamentations 3:22-23

Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,

    for his compassions never fail.

They are new every morning;

    great is your faithfulness.


God is the author of every season.