A Letter To My Unborn Son

il_fullxfull.1040861689_kawxWhen I first found out you were going to be a little boy, I was happy. I was ecstatic. I had always dreamed of having a little gentleman. Yet, being raised without a brother, fear started to set in as the time ticked by. Will I be enough for this precious child? Will my love be adequate? Will I know how to teach him to be strong and courageous in the LORD?

These are things that I have been praying for endlessly, little one. As I feel you move in my tummy, I think about the man that God is creating you to be – bold like a lion, wise like a leader and a kindhearted giver.

Dear son, God has his hand on your life – and that truth is beautiful to me. Your flesh has been spoken for and the King of Kings has called you by name. I have never experienced the blessing of carrying one of God’s children in my womb before; but this experience and the joy it gives me is unending.

Sure, there are days, that it’s hard to carry another life in my body. You realize your mortal nature and limits. But, when I think about the unique and separate life God is forming in me – it brings tears to my eyes. That cannot be matched.

God chooses to make warriors from feeble flesh and bone. He chooses to breathe his life into temples prone to break and shatter. He chooses to crown the unworthy with his pearls of wisdom. And, sweet son, I desire for God to crown you with his precious gifts.

I pray that you desire to seek your Creator. That I will be able to emulate an untamed passion for the Savior of our lives! May God guard my lips and make me into a vessel that only speaks pleasing and positive words over your life.

From birth, I pray you feel God’s breath wash over your body. May you feel his love burst forth over your heart and mind. As we hold you right out of the womb – may you feel God’s love beating from our chests onto yours – for you are our miracle!

More than anything in this world, I want you to comprehend God’s never-ending love for you. I want you to seek out his word and follow where his spirit is leading you.

Like King David, I will pray every day for you to truly be a man that chases after God’s heart. May you dream dreams and see visions like the prophets of old. Sweet boy, I pray for your relationship with the Maker of All Good Things.

From the moment of conception, he has been calling you by name, sweet one. May your ears be tuned to truly listen for his voice and your eyes open to see the goodness of the LORD of Hosts.

We look forward to physically seeing and holding the perfection that is you – formed by the hands of the Master Artist.


When The Brook Has Dried Up

'The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the LORD sends rain on the land.' - 1 Kings 17_ 7, 8 & 14You’re parched – literally craving the mist circling like a watery aura around the garden hose. You lean forward and try to guzzle that stream of cool water; yet – the spicket runs dry before you can enjoy even one taste.

You grimace and feel destitute; but, sometimes the brooks in our lives run dry. We sit there with empty hands, scratch our heads and try to lap up the dust – but the stream is emaciated.

When this happens, we can feel helpless – like a toddler that has our security blanket snatched from us too soon, we cry out and are baffled at why this water has been stolen from us. It’s not only appalling, it’s painful.

But is it necessarily a bad thing to be parched – especially when we are trusting entirely too much in our own shallow water source?

God gives and takes away.

And though the taking away part might be extremely agonizing, if you are a Child of God – never doubt that he will always give you beauty for ashes and strength for fear.

He will point you to the stream that overflows with rich, cool, never ending water – for by drinking from that brook, we truly fill our souls.

“Some time later the brook dried up because there had been no rain in the land. Then the word of the LORD came to him …”

“The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the LORD sends rain on the land.” – 1 Kings 17: 7, 8 & 14

We must let the LORD’s rain water our spirits and wash away our feeble sources of fulfillment.

This might mean a little time in the desert – walking on crackling, thirsty soil. But, it’s worth it. You may not feel like it now – but wandering can lead to bold contentment.

Like the Israelites, their time in the desert was not wasted. They saw miracles come to pass, God raised up brave leaders and they were led to a land flowing with milk and honey.

May we drop our earthly wanton desires and seek the water that daily provides nourishment to our souls.

God will not let you be barren for a lifetime.

He wants to water your roots; but water them with his stream of healing, living waters.


Glow With The Presence of The Conquering King

For when we glow with the presence of the conquering King – darkness has to flee. It shrivels in despair..jpgLet’s just breathe – relax. Let’s loosen the feverish grasp we have on the situations we cannot control. Because they are just that – issues we cannot manage ourselves.

We see the swirling world around us – and it worries us – for good reason. We witness evil and malevolence gaining a foothold in society. This moss encrusted virus covers the hills and crevices of our culture.

We weep for such a loss. It’s terrifying – absolutely horrifying and depressing.

What you once considered right, gazing through the glasses of morality, are now mucky – caked in debris. You try to warn those around you that calamity is coming if we give way to such deceit; but, the clear looking glass is smudged – and black and white features have faded to gray.

It’s easy to walk around defeated and dulled by the sharp edges of life. For life in this world is not always fair – no, it’s painful sometimes.

Flowers do not always line the pavement to our imagined field of dreams. Sometimes we have to scrub the pavement of the graffiti – made by the hands of vandals and thieves. We have to pluck the thorns of the ruby rose – in order to appreciate the full beauty and fragrance.

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You have anointed my head with oil; My cup overflows.… Psalm 23:4

We may witness evil gaining a foothold. We may see the sky illuminate with the smoke of destruction and chaos. These are things that we, as children of the Living God, may witness.

Yet, we mustn’t lose heart. The LORD tells us to keep shining his light.

We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. – 2 Corinthians 4:8

For when we glow with the presence of the conquering King – darkness has to flee. It shrivels in despair.

We cannot fix this broken world; but we can bring hope to the hopeless and true healing to the broken. We can stand firm on the bedrock of our faith and share with others how to distinguish what is good and lovely in the midst of the bleeding, blurred lines of this crumbling society.

We can hold forth a lantern of truth – knowing that God’s luminosity (no matter if the stream of light is small) can irradiate the darkest of nights.

It just takes faith – and the courage to stare down that sinister smog the world exudes. Darkness and despair should never define us. Look to the light and let it defeat the evil among us.


Beautiful Love Bursting Forth

The LORD appeared to us in the past, saying_ _I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness. – Jeremiah 31_3Love. It’s bursting forth. Like a bubbling brook with cool, refreshing water. God’s love for us is overflowing and never-ending. What love is this that the Father has lavished upon us!

The LORD appeared to us in the past, saying: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness. – Jeremiah 31:3

He looks into our eyes – and deep emotion is garnered. Affection is felt. Not the kind of affection we feel for a family member, loved one, children or spouse. No, this love is deeper. It’s a mixture of all those loves combined along with heavenly, pure passion.

What chills we would feel, if we were to look into the physical face of the King of Kings! One day – we will. But until then, we are blown away at the sensation we garner as the LORD’s loving wind sweeps over our senses.

This feeling is beyond compare. It’s selfless. No mortal being can love us with this type of zeal and adoration.

He is jealous for me, loves like a hurricane; I am a tree, bending beneath the weight of His wind and mercy. When all of a sudden, I am unaware of these afflictions eclipsed by glory, and I realize just how beautiful You are, and how great Your affections are for me. – David Crowder Band Lyrics

Look up to the heavens, sweet child of the King, and feel the LORD’s love wash over you. He is pleased when you fall before him and thank him for his gracious and greatest sacrifice of all – his blood.

Dance in the freedom that God’s self-sacrificial love has given you. Share his light with the world. He has not called you to be a canister that blocks and snuffs out his all-encompassing light.

Shine bright. Breathe in his love, and share it with others searching and seeking. We all need love, and the kind that the Father of Lights offers can complete a seeking soul! Amen.


Choosing To Wear Garments of Kindness and Humility

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.Humility and kindness – these are qualities that all parents desire to teach their children. In fact, they are attributes our parents strived to pass down on us.

However, as knock-kneed children, being meek and compassionate toward others was probably the last thing on our minds. We were fixed on story-telling, impressing those around us with our wild experiences, winning coloring contests, and collecting the most Easter eggs in our pastel wicker baskets.

Unfortunately, the truth is – we were sure to have stepped on others feelings a time or two in that process.

Even as adults, it’s not easy to count others better than ourselves. Outdoing others in work projects is a top priority, and climbing the career ladder becomes a prime focus. Yet, as Children of the Living God, it’s necessary to die to our pride every single day.

This death to vanity presents the perfect beauty and picture of God’s grace. You are not saved by your works, good deeds or latest work victory.

You are saved by the LORD’s grace alone. We are all sinners, born with this nature, and that is why the spotless lamb had to suffer on that rugged cross – for you and me.

“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.” – Colossians 3:12

May we choose to dress ourselves in the grace of our Almighty Father. By making the choice to wear garments of kindness and humility, we are choosing to display the grace of our Father.

Every morning may we step into our spiritual clothes of faith – acknowledging that no man is better than the other; but, we are all unique and meaningful in the eyes of our Creator.

Smell in the freshness of these garments stitched with the threads of gentleness. They are some of the finest vestments we can model. We decide everyday either to strap on pride and selfish ambition or to button ourselves with His grace.

May we always choose grace.



A Flower Does Not Think of Competing – It Just Blooms

“A flower does not think of competing to the flower next to it. It just blooms.”How often do we look at others around us, while we ourselves are growing strong and tall? It happens to us all – we lose sight of our distinctive strengths and fixate on those around us. We lose sight of our personal walk with God and try to measure up to someone else.

It’s so very important we focus on our individual roots not the roots of others.

The flowers around us may be sprouting up in confidence and beauty (and, that’s grand); but don’t let the beauty of others growth stifle who you are!

There is no reason to compete with children of the living God. We are all serving one purpose – to glorify the King of Kings. He has made us all wild, brilliant flowers in his everlasting garden of life. Hallelujah!

“A flower does not think of competing with the flower next to it. It just blooms.”

Bloom, sweet flower, you are uniquely beautiful. Reach up toward the sun and garner your strength from his light. We all have petals of diverse elegance – some bright yellow others pastel pink. But, remember, you were made for a purpose.

Do not lose heart with the virus of comparison – for it can steal your joy. Our confidence should be found in Christ. He is the only one our souls should seek to impress.

“Am I saying this now to win the approval of people or God? Am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be Christ’s servant.”  – Galatians 1:10

May we strive to be the best flower that we can be! Let’s unfold in grace and dignity – displaying God’s power and ongoing provision.

Grow in the fertilized soil of God’s Word. Fixate on the sun and not the progress of others around you; for it is the Sun that observes and fawns over our development.


Locked in the Lion of Judah’s Grasp

You are locked in the Lion of Judah’s grasp.I see your thoughts, child. Wild and apprehensive, you look to me with questions and a genuine pursuit of clarity.

You fall before me and say,

“Father, lead me in your ways. Reveal your beautiful plans to me. May I hear you swiftly and assuredly.”  

Keep looking to me and seeking my face, dear child. For it is in the seeking and the knocking that you will truly hear my voice.

Your action – to pursue my face speaks volumes to my heart; and, I will answer your call.

My plans for you are mighty. You are locked in the Lion of Judah’s grasp. Do not fret about tomorrow, just continue to walk in my will – and expect to receive my blessings and voice of direction.

I have made you for great things. Step out, sweet child. Beyond your comfort zone – and trust in my mountain moving ability. It is I that has said, I will never leave you nor forsake you. Please take me at my words.

“They will have no fear of bad news; their hearts are steadfast, trusting in the LORD.” – Psalm 112:7

Trust and listen for my voice. Breakthrough is on the horizon.

Cranberry, Brussels Sprouts Detox Salad

saladThis refreshing salad was too good not to share. It was my little delicious dinner last night. I call it my ‘detox’ salad because a lot of the ingredients are actually quite detoxifying and super good for your body.

There is little to no prep time to whip up this yummy meal. So start cooking – and your taste buds will thank you and your hips too!

You will need (for the salad): 6 medium sized Brussels sprouts, 1 wedge iceberg lettuce, 10 almonds, ¼ cup cranberries, ¼ cup cooked quinoa, handful of fresh sprouts and 2 diced green onions.

You will need (for salad dressing): ¼ cup olive oil, ¼ cup apple cider vinegar, 2 tbsp. lemon juice, 1 dash of garlic powder, 1 tsp. of mustard and a dash of salt and pepper.

Simply cut off the end s of the Brussels sprouts (I just discarded the ends in the trash) and chop your tasty greens up nicely with a sharp knife, and place in a bowl.

Chop your lettuce wedge up too and add it to your sprout mixture. Dice your almonds in a food processor (or simply by hand) and add to your bowl. Then one by one layer on your other yummy ingredients:  cooked quinoa, sprouts, cranberries and green onions.

In a separate bowl, mix up your salad dressing components and once they are all mixed up – drizzle it over your awaiting salad. And then – enjoy.

This recipe yields one sizeable salad (double the ingredients for a dinner for two!)


Christ’s Joy – Brewing In Our Souls

May my lips overflow with praise, for you teach me your decrees. May my tongue sing of your word, for all your commands are righteous. May your hand be ready to help me, for I have chosen your precepts. – Psalm 119_Joyfulness, may it brew within our souls. In this life, so many people strive for happiness. We seek out hobbies that will ignite our hearts and plan trips to far-off places in order to quench our curiosity.

We figure happiness can be caught in the sights and sounds of something far more attractive and interesting than our everyday lives. But, we miss the joy that comes from the minutes discarded on mundane mornings and typical nights.

We miss the beauty of life. Not the thrill-seeking, adventure prone life; but, the normal obedient one that tends never to get recognition or wide acclaim.

But, child – there is splendor in the diligent routine.

Oh dear heart, like the scripture teaches – our joy comes in the morning. Look to the heavens when you arise and ask for that joy (that only our Maker can give) to fill your lungs and reside in your smile.

Sing praise to the LORD, you His godly ones, And give thanks to His holy name. For His anger is but for a moment, His favor is for a lifetime; Weeping may last for the night, But a shout of joy comes in the morning. – Psalm 30:5

You may feel like you are rising to just a typical day; yet, with God – nothing is typical. You, in fact, are atypical. Created with a purpose unlike any other – you can shine even in the most mundane moments.

Let Christ’s strong herbal nature pervade your body. Allow his Holy Spirit to brew within your soul. May he quicken your heart and bestow on your life – the complete joy of the LORD.

The joy of the LORD moves mountains. No longer search for happiness – for it will never satisfy the soul. Like water to the parched tongue is Christ’s joyfulness to a human spirit.

May my lips overflow with praise, for you teach me your decrees. May my tongue sing of your word, for all your commands are righteous. May your hand be ready to help me, for I have chosen your precepts. – Psalm 119:171-173

Rejoice in Him. Drink in his security, provision and guidance. Celebrate everyday obedience. You are light to the nations every single day – whether mountain climbing or quietly worshiping.


The Call Of The Trail

BESTThe trail is paved. Though rocky and uneven, it is surprisingly inviting. The winding road beckons you to trot with faith in the clearing up ahead. Mounted on a vehicle of strength, a steady steed, you ride into the distance with sheer anticipation of the events up ahead.

Will you encounter deep darkness or tremble in shivering fear? Or will you garner strength and hold out the sword of the perfect spirit? You will never know unless you gallop forward.

And gallop forward you must. For God does not call us to be complacent. He has called us to be warriors of his passionate truth. Surrounded by thick vines and branches, you see the clearing – and the uncertainty up ahead is great.

However, you know that your feet are equipped with the buckles of his salvation and you are lined with his armor that is impenetrable.

Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and he will establish your plan. – Proverbs 16:3

You may fear the enemies in the distance; but, God has already defeated them for you. They are nothing but empty threats lined with hollow souls; so – do not fear!

The LORD has gone ahead of you and displayed his power of utmost greatness. He has established your plan – and that is one of striking triumph!

Ride on, dear seeker. Leave the comfort of the nest and branch out. Search out the beauty that the trail ride can offer your life. For it is when we leave the comfort of the familiar, that we are richly blessed.

I could never resist the call of the trail. – Buffalo Bill

Trust in the provision of the Most High. Answer the call of the trail before your glistening eyes. Take chances that reflect his Almighty Nature. Shine with his great light and be not afraid of the scoffers that try to knock you down.

Suit up. Grip your saber and ride forward – into the great unknown. Breathe in the bounty that Christ offers and brush off the vines that attempt to hinder your path. Look to the light – and rest in the mercies of your Maker’s promises.