Posted in Friends, Uncategorized

Friends

The wounds of a friend are trustworthy, but the kisses of an enemy are excessive.
Proverbs 27:6 CSB

 

I’ve been quiet this week with some people. Not so much with others. I’m aware. I’m processing something.

What I’ve noticed all week long is how many friends I have and how much value they add to my life.

Like my “bestie tribe.” 3 amazing ladies who I can tell my heart to. Tell my “stuff” to and they don’t flinch. And when I need a “seriously, girl?!” insert-eyeroll-emoji moment – they deal it out. When one of us is at the hospital, we’re all at the hospital. When one of us is in crisis, we’re just there. I love them so much.

Then there’s my friend I get to sit next to at work. She’s this amazing lady who tells it like it is, takes charge, and is just sweet & sassy. The great thing about her is – we just know how to read each other. We observe and adjust our attitude accordingly. We either cry on and off all day or look at each other and burst out laughing for no reason.

And I have a dear friend from high school who I don’t see as often as I’d like, but when we get together It’s like we were never apart.

This week I talked to a friend of 13 years whom I’ve never met in person, but he has encouraged me more over the years than anyone will ever know. He always asks me 1. What are you writing creatively? and 2. Who is the man who is loving you as well as you deserve? My answers this week were 1. I blog, but need to get back to poetry. and 2. Uhm… You see, what had happened was…

I had a long text conversation with another friend (from high school) this week. Turns out we had gone through the same set of events together back then, yet experienced them in vastly different ways. When we finally had the ah! ha! moment, it helped us both heal.

And last but not least, I have a great friend whom I’ve only known for a year, but it feels like we’ve known each other forever. Whether I need advice or a wake up call, I can count on this person to be just what I need. This is the kind of friend you hold on to. The one who you know will be there in all seasons. A forever kind of friend.

I’ve been noticing who my friends are this week. Appreciating. Loving. Admiring. Being grateful.

You should try it.

Posted in Anxiety, Depression, Teenager, Love, Poetry

Oh, Turn Your…

When I was alone or felt I was alone as a child, I couldn’t stand it. The minute the door shut and the lights went out I felt like the walls came alive and a living, retching monster might come forth at any given moment and find in me a tasty snack.

Often when I would find myself in this anxiety-inducing darkness, I would hear something from the living room that eased my fears and allowed me to rest. I would hear music.

You see, as far back as I can remember, my mom has been a pianist at church. I grew up with her practicing hymns on the piano. When she’s not actually playing, my mind still recalls stanzas of God’s promises and choruses reminding me of His goodness, His faithfulness, His love. It lives inside of me.

Age 11 often found me sitting outside, usually nestled in the ample bicep of the Oak tree by the back porch, writing. I was usually writing poetry. Writing has always been my solace. It started as a fortress against the monsters in the walls. Like the music mom played, writing in verse and rhyme is a majestic theme my mind uses to relax and feel safe.

In 2017, when I walked the halls of the hospital where my daughter was receiving therapy for her own anxieties, I found myself alone and in a place where, it seemed, a monster was pacing me; it wanted to find me – panicked, cowering, alone.

Instead, my earbuds provided a conduit for those hymns (and few new ones) to invade my heart and flood me with peace in an otherwise terrifying place.

When the soundtrack of your life is God’s love and faith is your refrain, the darkness and the monsters must flee.

Last week Lauren Daigle came out with a new version of one of the old hymns mom used to play on the piano. It is my favorite. My heart just cannot stop singing it. Now when I hear it, it’s my daughter Stephanie’s voice I hear in my heart – she has the most angelic voice I’ve ever heard.

The song? Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus

I’m not solely writing to tell you where I go to find my solace.

I’m writing to ask you – “Where do you find yours?”
I’m also asking you to reflect on my favorite song.

This world is far too full of darkness and, despite being so connected, entirely too lonely.

Won’t you turn your eyes?

 

 

 

Posted in Life Lessons

Unanticipated

Life has its dips and straights.

Sometimes Summer feels more like Spring, sometimes Spring feels more like Winter.

Sometimes the road is paved with love and laughter; sometimes it is washed out by torrents of tears.

When I look back over my life I’ve always known what is right and what is wrong. And I’ve always known that my God is a good God.

I’ve not always chosen the recommended path. I have scars on my skin and my heart as mile markers for the roads to avoid.

Sometimes my silence shrieks while my karaoked daily routine resounds like a symphony.

I’ve come full-circle from where I thought my life ended to where I felt alive again. I stood on the precipice of hope, only to find what I’ve longed for is just out of reach, then gone.

When the straight highway to the great unknown I’ve anticipated takes an unanticipated turn in a valley ahead, and the road bends from an exclamation point into more of a question mark, I will choose to take a moment and ask for this one thing: God, if you’ll give me more of your Holy Spirit and I can feel your presence, then I’ll continue on. I can’t live without the power and the presence of the Almighty. In fact, I won’t.

 

Lord, fill me with your presence in this valley so I can get to that glorious unknown you have waiting over there for me to inhabit.

You’re a good God. Without you I add up to nothing.