To Be or Not to Be

“if we are spiritual at all, we have visions of what Jesus wants us to be.  It is important that I learn…not to doubt that it can be attained.” from 30 day My Utmost for His Highest on


We are called to be (not to do).  I feel like this is an important distinction. We are called to be (not to do).


I know for me it is easy to get caught up in a (well-intentioned) quest to fulfill “my calling.”


However, over the last few years, I’ve made the mistake of framing that as a specific job.  God doesn’t call us to a specific job.  


He calls us to be His, strive to be like Him in everything we do.  Calls us to be His loving hands on earth.  Calls us to let our being exist in adoration and obedience.

This is true of the every day and everything, not just some calling I want God to clarify and send my way. (However, if you still wanted to that God, that’d be great)

  • S

Grace from a Two Year Old

I got down on my knees and held his squishy, stinky hands and waited for the fire trucks to pass.


grace from 2 yr odThen looked him in the eyes and said I’m sorry. I’m sorry momma snapped.


He took my face in those same sticky hands and looked me in the eyes and said its ok momma.


Grace from a two year old. Nothing sweeter.


Instantly granted and forgotten with the next request for more apple juice please.


He is growing and learning and time is passing and I am aging and learning more from him than vice versa I’m sure.


He pushes me to the point…the point right before I go crazy daily. He pushes me past it -quite frequently too.


Those days I lean in extra long because the boycub needs to be held extra.


God blessed me big and I fail daily, but man am I glad He chose me.

  • J

Through Her Eyes

12540822_10107749970154504_4449193873919404720_nAinslee has these big bright eyes, that are definitely turning browner every day, but right now, you can still see the specks of green and gold.  I love those eyes.  

And, every once in awhile, she catches me totally off guard with them.  Sometimes, I find her just staring at my face when I’m holding her.  When I make eye contact at these times, she doesn’t turn away, but seems to be studying my soul as she gazes deeply into my eyes reflecting the green in hers.


I can’t help, but wondering at the woman she perceives.  I hope she sees the woman I try to be (and sometimes fail to be).  


I hope she sees how much I cherish and love her – the oceans I would cross for her (and her brother).


I hope she sees a woman chasing God, grace, and compassion.


I hope she sees love, hope, and faith.


e9dc8c309754aeee1d6b63c8359e87e2I hope she sees safety and joy.


In these moment, I hope we can always take time to just stare into the depths of each others’ souls as we both grow older and closer.  In the meantime, I’m just going to enjoy being the TiTi she needs and wants (most of the time), loving her to pieces every step of the way.

  • S

They Come First

“ Really good mothers make the tough choices…and they don’t look back. Being a strong mother means having a backbone of steal and resolving to always do what is best for your kids. And there is never anything easy about that, because many folks around you, including family and friends, will tell you you’re crazy”


They’ll tell you you’ll burn out, you’ll lose yourself, you must take care of YOU first.


But they are wrong.


they come firstI chose to create two little, very dependent lives. I MUST take care of them first. I want to take care of them first. If the whole world comes crashing down they will laugh under the blanket of my body.


Knowing they’re safe and loved and mom is with them and for them. And they will watch the world rain down unafraid.


That is my job; that is my blessing.


I get to love them so hard, in a world so hard. I get to teach them sacrifice and beauty in the ashes and in the glory.


And I get to do it first. Not after my “me time” not after my workout, not after my coffee. They come first. And they run me ragged. And they are my new perspective. And they fill me up, my blessings I’m trying to raise up.


They are growing me up, they are lifting me up, and they come first, always.


I’ll come second, I’ll come third. And some days that’s hard, but I still choose it, I won’t change it.


In a thousand worlds, in a thousand ways, I pray they know my love and take for granted my sacrifices. And learn to seek the beauty in the ashes and rain and find the glory hidden and bold.

  • S

More Space

“…We must learn to make room for HIm…We plan and figure and predict this or that will happen, but we forget to make room for God to come in as He chooses.”  from 30 day My Utmost for His Highest on

This is so difficult for me at times with my natural inclination towards worrying combined with OCD tendencies.

God always makes room whether we are ready.  As I’m entering a time of flux, I’m trying to keep this in mind.

 3238cc5e186c784a964b3ee7e74d0da7I’ve found that I had the space for him all along.  It was right where I had been parking, harboring my unnecessary levels of worry.  

So, when I intentionally choose not to stress the details and trust God to step in as I’ve always known Him to do, everything is better.

“Keep your life so constantly in touch with God that His surprising power can break through at any point.  Live in a constant state of expectancy and leave room for God to come in as He decides.”  

  • S

God is Love

If God is telling you to love someone don’t over think it. Don’t list reasons they don’t deserve it or list how they’ve done you wrong or worry how it might hurt again. Just love.


If you have an itch to show some love or kindness just do it. That is God. God is always love.

god is love

Every good and perfect gift comes from above. James 1:17


…The greatest of these is love 1 Corinthians 13:13


And He will use you and your good deeds, your love poured out, in ways you may never see. And it may hurt again, that is life.


But God is good and God is love, and you never know the ways someone needs you or the ways God will use you.

  • J


God is always there.  He doesn’t hide or evade.

He doesn’t play hard to get.

“I am the Lord, and there is not other.  I have not spoken in secret, from somewhere in a land of darkness; I have not said, ‘Seek me in vain.’ I, the Lord speak the truth; I declare what is right.  Turn to me and be saved, all you ends of the earth; for I am God and there is no other.” Isaiah 45: 18b-19


He is always there, eagerly awaiting us to seek HIm – even pursuing us to return at times.  


Why would we seek Him?  Why do we?


Because He is our light in the darkness – our salvation we wrongly seek in so many worldly things.


Because when we run to Him, we feel His power – the power of HIs love, power of His grace, power of redemption.  


After all, before me every knee will bow, by me every tongue will swear.  They will say, ‘In the Lord alone are deliverance and strength.”’ Isaiah 45:23b-24
And I don’t know about you, but I could use deliverance and strength more often than I like to admit.

– S

Dragon Thoughts

Just yesterday I was talking to my neighbor about being an adult and still wanting parental approval.


It’s funny because Nici and Bug already search for it. She pauses and waits for my eye contact before becoming a bounce machine. He’ll lash out and then cling to my leg in true bear cub fashion seeking attention and love.


We don’t outgrow this, the lashing out and clinging, the desire for direct eye contact; the desire to be seen and cherished and praised.


And as I lay in bed next to my bear cub I can’t help but think on how my parents balanced this…the internal dialogue went like this:


Parents: if you play with dragons, you’re going to get burnt


Me: I want to play with dragons so I will (I don’t know where Nici gets his defiance)


train your dragonParents: here’s some burn cream. What did you learn? By the way, you are fearless and awesome.


(Yes, How to Train Your Dragon is Nici’s current obsession)


And as I lay there hugging my bearcub I know he will ride dragons bareback.


And I listen to my little bug with her heavy sleepy breaths thinking, “let her sleep for when she wakes she will breathe fire.”


And I pray I equip them appropriately. That they always feel loved and seen and treasured and fearless.


And I pray that when I do drop the ball it’s ok, because they know their heavenly Father who always sees and always loves.


And I remind myself I am His child too. And enjoy playing with Dragons.

  • J

What Shall I Fear?

“Fear not Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding reward.”  Genesis 15:1b


I don’t usually (and by not usually, I mean never) read King James version.  But, for some reason, my Bible app had reset to this setting.  I am so glad it did, because I love this version of this verse.


God protects us and He is our reward.  The two main things.


We know he has our back. And we know what we are fighting for ~ a reward we’ve already been given.


We’ve already won and God is on our side.


Truly, what do we have to fear?


This is not what I would consider my “natural” demeanor or inclination when it comes to fear, worry, or anxiety.  

But, for some reason, I am becoming increasingly okay with this idea – Making the conscious choice of letting things go because I know who is in control, I know who knows better than I, and I know at the end of my life I will find myself sitting at His feet.
So, again, truly, what do I have to fear?

– S

Bear Cub Perspective

I opened my eyes to minion talk and bear breathe two inches from my face. At 2 am. And no I wasn’t sleeping so this didn’t startle me; we’d been awake since 11 pm and this was just one of his many silly antics that night.


By God’s grace I find him endearing, and can smile and keep perspective (most days and nights) through the exhaustion.


Perspective that these all nighters surely will end. And I will desperately miss his little bear body beckoning me to hide and feed him at all hours of the night.

3 hours of sleep is the norm this month. I realize that makes me some sort of a vampire.


Some days I’m just angry, I was told sleep would come by now. The training and theories and well intended advice, that’s for other, less stubborn, less strong willed children. I have nothing less than a bear cub. And he will not be tamed or bribed.


And that energy, freedom, dare I say defiance, is what I love the most. He beats to his own drum and requires minimal sleep and oozes passion.


It’s not my job to break him down into this convenient (sleep oriented) box.


His is a wild spirit; my bear cub, too soon to be man cub.


It is my job to teach him to harness this spirit for good and truth and adventure. To rest and recharge in his ways, not mine.


What is most frustrating in him, is also most exciting.


I love this bear child and thank God for perspective and grace (for us both) on these long nights.

  • J