Monday, June 18, 2012


Early June, between the hued edges of dusk and dawn, I saw it. There, in my hands.

I held it still.

But God...I thought I had already surrendered it..., I told Him, blinking hard, half hoping I was seeing wrong, had heard Him wrong. But no, my eyes- my heart - echoed His truth.

He had breathed but one word into my soul, so clearly.


I had seen it then... I saw that I held it still. And I knew what He was asking of me. Not that I hadn't surrendered it before. But He is always -will always- be calling me deeper. Would I go deeper?..

 I looked up that word;



Voluntarily cease to keep or claim; give up.

abandon - renounce - give up - quit - waive - leave

Could I abandon my treasure to Him? The treasure I thought I had already given up? Did I realize He was asking for not just access to my life, to my treasure, but for unconditional surrendering, giving up, of every area of my life? What would my answer be?...

The beauty of saying yes to God, is that with each new yes, the next yes becomes easier.

When you realize your hands are way too small for what you had been trying to hold on to, and you renounce any and all ownership and authority over it, placing it instead into the same hand that guides Venus across the sun, it unharmed, you realize that your treasure is safest when it's not yours, but His, the Consuming Fire that burns through you only to heal you, and not to harm.

You realize, that the only things that are fire-proof are those which are His, and if you are fully His, then you are fully safe.

 In this journey of unconditional surrendering, this relinquishing of every right to any and all parts of me, I'm finding the sweetest kind of happiness....And I know it's just the beginning, this joy-journey deeper into His heart--the only Treasure worth everything.

"It is a mercy that our lives are not left for us to plan, but that our Father chooses for us; else might we sometimes turn away from us the choicest and loveliest gifts of His providence"
- Susannah Spurgeon

"If you will give God your right to yourself, He will make a holy experiment out of you-- and His  experiments always succeed."

"Put no conditions on your life--let Jesus be everything to you, and He will take you home with Him not only for a day, but for eternity."
Oswald Chambers

And eternity is so, so near.
Hebrews 12:1-3

Monday, June 4, 2012

I Am

Would that this heart of mine wasn't perpetually bending into detour mode; would that I always trusted in the Hand that has yet to give more than one can bear... would that I never caused His heart sadness from my lack of quiet rest in His good intention for those dearest...

But although I often slip into quiet despair, He who is Quiet Rest finds His way into my heart time and time again, and daily moment-by-moment He reminds me Who He is. Not just with words.


Early one Tuesday morning I pick my mom up from the airport, her having arrived safely from South America. As I pull out her suitcase and bring it up our stairs I sigh relief, and there, at 3am, He pulls at my heart. Trust Me.

Not forty-eight hours later, I wake to find a smiling face bending over mine, one I all to often let my fears tell me I wouldn't get to see again, him having driven through the night after arriving from Afghanistan to surprise us. Thank you God, Thank you God....Thank you God! are the first whispered words out of my mouth, my face in my hands. And as I reach out and embrace the brother who's name means prayed for, who was prayed for even before he was born, He reaches me, this God who astounds me daily at His heart of love.  Trust Me.

And I am so grateful... grateful that my brother made it home safely. Not all brothers make it home after 4 deployments. And yet I can't help aching over the things I don't even know about, that he's had to see and do and hear over there, the things I may never know about...and renewed despair wants to settle into me, but again, His words settle over me. Trust Me.

Four days later sister Diana arrives safely from Africa, and at last our family is down to one continent after being stretched across four.

Two days later I pack up our Ford and as the miles clip past, and the distance between us and our destination falls away,  I plead with God to make the distance between my heart and His, the distance I've created, fall away too. I plead with him to help me see these days of change and transition as He sees them. (Matthew 6)

South Carolina welcomes us with rain showers and as we settle into our hotel, I wonder at my wandering heart;how worry can blind out hope. And sleep evades my evading soul.

Wide awake at four the next morning, I try to connect with this God who I do not understand. The heaviness inside is deeper than the muggy air outside. And I read how Jesus "...never lost hope for anyone, because He put His trust in God first. He trusted absolutely in what God’s grace could do for others."

Do I trust in what God's grace can do for others?...Or do I trust my own understanding of what God's grace should look like.

Hours later, as we drive the two miles on to Parris Island, through beauty that cuts deep, I sense His love deeper still. I am here. Trust Me. One hand on the steering wheel, the other on my phone, I pause to capture a piece of the One who has captured me.

And minutes later I get to see the brother I haven't seen in 13 weeks, who in spite of Pneumonia and dental surgery complications successfully completed training, and while worrying about both brothers night and day comes much easier to me than letting God carry the burden, merciful as He is, He reminds me this beautiful Thursday morning, that the past and future are His, and only the present mine to hold.
And He is present. And I smile long at Adrian, and remember to number the mercies that brought us each here.  "He trusted absolutely in what God's grace could do for others." I want that absolute trust.
And I see the smiles on their faces, friends that travelled 14 hours to show their support to a young man who's never known what it is like to have a father-figure that believes in him-until now- and I blink back tears all day, me trying to wrap my mind around a love like theirs.
And the next day, Friday June 1, the day of his graduation, I'm still numbering them, the harmony of gifts that make the present crowd out the dissonance of worries. Another friend, taking time off work, takes time to smile with Adrian, him being a faithful friend to this new Marine since they met many years ago.
My two brothers and our two friends, they smile and laugh long, and I think longer still on the goodness of God.

And all too soon it's time to say goodbye, us girls needing to make it back home to feed Kitty.
I'm too overwhelmed with this God that cares for the sparrow to be able to sleep, so my mother and sister rest, while I talk to Him as I drive down I-75.

"Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. ...

But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. ...

Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?

And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin:
And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.

Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?

Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?

(For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things."

And 4 hours from home, He again pulls back a bit more of the curtain, and through the seen I catch a glimpse of the unseen God, the setting sun aflame.

Open your eyes. I am everywhere. Even in your deepest darkest pit; here I am. 

I love your family more than you do...They are mine. I am here. 

I will not leave... Why question Me when you can't understand My ways? Why not trust Me?

Do the cares of this life hold your heart, or does my care hold you?...

Do not dread tomorrow.

Seek first My Kingdom... Seek Me first... Open your eyes. I am everywhere. I am here.

Seek Me. First.

I will never leave.

"God will be to us everything we will let Him be."~ OHC, pg. 131

"Turn you to the strong hold, ye prisoners of hope: even to day do I declare that I will render double unto thee;"