Wednesday, December 11, 2013

All the time in the World.

You know when You begin to realize new things? When you suddenly learn something world-altering? When you experience that rush of new breath or hope and suddenly want to propel forward in it as quickly as possible? Or when you see something in yourself that needs work. Almost the exact same moment you see it, you desire to run at full force toward a solution of some kind.

But what if God has a completely different view on things?

At this point in my life, I'm not proficient in many forms of art. I have a very artistic brain and nature, but haven't learned to speak the language yet.  I tried on multiple occasions. I bought supplies and set out to master painting. Or drawing. Gritting my teeth and spending days determined to walk away having successfully figured things out.

I've also experienced several "awakenings" in which my eyes were opened drastically and suddenly to myself.  To my ugliness. At one point to my craziness. Unhealthy behavior in every way. And immediately, I surged straight forward with every single fiber of my being,
absolutely focused and set on fixing it. now.

In both of these, I fell flat on my face. Hard. Had the wind knocked out of me for quite a while. Left so exhausted that I actually got sick from it. And got up frustrated and agitated and instantly began running again. Sometimes it takes me a while to get things through my stubborn head.

I have always strongly fought bull-headed and stubbornly against "the process." I've always butted against taking time to learn, experience, heal, train, know things. I think in a way almost everybody does. I think in our nature, we don't like the thought of a slow process to "get there". I always want nothing more than to just figure it out so I can get to work accomplishing "it".

My friend Jessie has given me a new perspective. Well, she's tried several times. And I didn't listen.
But perhaps studying Advent has helped me to grasp this at last.....
Jesus actually delights in "process". He likes to watch every step of it. If we're open, if our eyes are looking, we can see that He loves it because it allows Him to walk alongside us in every step of the process. And He delights in the intimacy that can result from that. Because He delights in His kids and hanging out with them. And perhaps that's exactly why things take time.

If I saw unhealthiness in myself and was able to work it out in a day, I would miss the ways I learned who He is and experienced Him through the 5 years it took.

If I learned how to draw this weekend, I would miss the opportunity to sit with a pencil and Him and ask Him to begin showing me His artistic side as I begin the journey into learning.

If we let go of trying to be so put together and embrace the process-whatever that may be in this season for each of us-we can potentially be extremely and pleasantly romanced and delighted in by our King.
And that's worth all the time in the world.

Friday, December 6, 2013

When the end is the beginning.

This has undoubtedly been a unique, full, and quite an eventful year.  And not just for me. For most of you as well. I see a pattern of God doing some crazy things in 2013. Some years just seem to be like that, don't they? What has stood out to you this year? What has been the most difficult challenge? The most beautiful thing? A place you've seen Jesus at work and redemption happening? 

Two years ago sitting in an airport Starbucks, Miss Beth told me that by looking at my face she could see that whatever I had been walking through was finished. Wrapped up. And that God was about to take me on a new crazy ride. I would have never believed that by December of this year I'd be writing this from a Starbucks in downtown Houston. I never actually planned on Jesus answering so many of my prayers. But answer He did.  

I had learned and observed enough to know that I wasn't going to thrive if I tried to conform to the pressure to settle down into "normalcy." But living in normalcy was where I was.  So I asked Him to plant passion within me. I asked Him to use me and mold me into a world-changer. He responded by bringing me to Africa. I was shredded and ripped apart for good. I asked Him if I could live there. He didn't say "yes" but sent me. Again. Departing for Kenya on the exact day I had left for South Africa the year before. As I sat on that plane and settled in for a long 2 days of flying, I marveled at the fact that this was the second June 25th that I was heading halfway across the world. And yet I doubt He cares to freely give what I ask for.  Only humans!

When I got back, I knew it was time for some serious change. I knew somewhere deep down that everything about my life was going to be unique. I have been through too much and seen pain and need too deep. I have also experienced and witnessed the redemption and healing power of Jesus at a level that just won't let me return to a typical way of living. I didn't say anything at first, 
(probably out of a fear that nothing would change), but I began looking into what the future might contain. I began slowly getting rid of stuff. I began looking into options. And then He finally answered.  And quickly. I received the phone call and in two weeks I was in Houston. Working for an incredible organization. And I get to spend at least the next 9 months serving and ministering to others as I grow and learn more about who I am and what He may have for me.  

It's not easy. I am still needing to make friends.  It's simple. I'm used to being unhealthily busy. There's not very many familiar things here. That's scary. I have to live on raised support.  Talk about difficult! I desperately yearn for family of my own. Being single is strange, alienating, and bitterly painful. But in the pain I get to experience Jesus as a lover in a way so weird and different and intimate. And I'm learning to accept and appreciate that more while waiting on Him to bring me the one He's designed. 

Houston is beautiful. In a different way.  The skyline is breathtaking at times.  It's a huge city.
 (4th largest in the U.S.) This means there are many incredible churches, ministries, and opportunities. And as I moved here an incredible passion I've never experienced before settled into my bones. A passion for justice. A passion to abolish the hideousness and evilness of human trafficking. I found out about it, I learned about how bad it is, and I can't look away.  It runs through my veins constantly. And I'm strangely thankful to be in the NUMBER 1 U.S. city for traffickers to send people. Because this is it.  This is the next step.  The first page of the new chapter for me. The end of the year being just the beginning of something huge. 

How about you? What's been hard? What's been beautiful? How is Jesus at work in your story?

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Saturday Morning Musings.

I woke up today and just began banging away at the keyboard. And of course, I feel so passionate about things I have to say at least some of it "out loud". Even if it's just to myself:.......

I want the Church to rise up and see things.  Understand that they really do have the ability to incredibly change this world. That there's power and resources never-ending at their fingertips. That whatever reason they have for feeling unqualified or daunted is not a problem for Him. And that God isn't going to force it on them, but they have to choose it, grab it, and run with it.  He longs to partner with us. To use us for mighty things and simultaneously give us an incredible and wild ride of a life. But we need to awaken to this. We need to get up off the "couches" of the lives we've created for ourselves and walk away.  Walk away from the enticing comforts of this world that are so good and remember the good is often the enemy of the very best. The enemy's stealthy and sneaky way of keeping us from rising up: "It's just a normal life. I'm a good person.. I tithe. I am involved at church.  My kids go to a Private school.  We volunteer in our community. My life doesn't look different than anyone else's!"……

Exactly.  We look like everyone else.  THAT'S THE PROBLEM. How in the world is looking like everyone else going to make any difference in this world?!
We weren't even created for this world.  LET'S STOP LIVING AS IF WE WERE!!!!!! I've been told "But it's not a crime to enjoy life. To live comfortably." No. It's not.  But the thing is we become stagnant. Distracted. And suddenly wake up one day wondering if this is all there will be to our lives. The living comfortably suddenly isn't the most amazing thing anymore.  It's because there's something in us telling us there's supposed to be more than this.

WE were made to be mighty warriors. Part of an army. Daily arising to work for and advocate our kingdom.  With fierce roars of war upon the one who has reeked havoc on this world.  Taking back the piles of ashes the Destroyer has created and watching as Jesus grabs them and creates redemptive beauty out of them. Healing the sick. Ridding disease. Rescuing the unseen and unheard that are trapped. (Yes. WE can do this!  Jesus said Himself that we are SUPPOSED to.  We have just forgotten!) Getting down and dirty in the gutter with the addict. Come on now.  This is a basic Sunday school question: Where would Jesus be today if He was physically walking this Earth.? You know the answer. Let's start looking like it, church.  For the Kingdom's sake. 

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Here's to ending it!

When I moved to Houston, I thought that perhaps this would be a wonderful year to begin networking with the mega-churches in the area that do a lot of youth ministry, women's ministry, and global missions. I knew Houston was huge and hoped for new ways to get involved in what I pictured my future probably contained. And I can see already that I was so right. And even more wrong.

 Last year I began learning about TheA21 campaign, an organization started by Christine Caine of Hillsong United. And right before I moved, I began her book called Undaunted. It's mainly about fulfilling the calling God has for your life. But part of it is about her journey into the work she does. When-through her words-I met the first group of girls she helped rescue from this modern-day slavery, I had my "Schindler's List" moment. Something shifted within me. Something came awake. Up until that point, I was convinced that working in Africa was going to be the thing I would forever be the most passionate about. I would have never dreamed of caring about anything more. And then this happened.

I learned that there are 27 million people enslaved in human trafficking today.
That every 30 SECONDS another person becomes a victim.

I learned that almost 100,000 children are sold into sex slavery every year in the United States. These statistics can be numbing numbers. But when you think about, read individuals stories, and consider what those numbers mean (180 people every time you watch a movie), I have a difficult time understanding how it doesn't shake you to your core. And the fact is the numbers are rising. This problem has been growing. And yes.  Even right here.

When I moved last month, I had learned all the statistics and was processing this in my heart. A bit shaken. Once I got here my team took me on a prayer tour of the city, something we do when a youth group comes for a missions trip. At that time they informed me that Houston is the #1 city in the U.S. for Human Trafficking because of the I-10 corridor and the Ship Channel. (Many of those trafficked are forced into and locked in shipping containers like sardines.) I was in shock. My roommate proceeded to point out several buildings the next week that are known to be trafficked brothels. And I had a flashback of being in Kenya this summer. There's a particular building next door to one of Agape's properties that for several reasons I'm positive is a trafficked brothel with CHILDREN. It all began sinking in. And I realized something. I have never felt so deeply about anything in my entire life. I can't stop thinking about it all the time. I want to crawl out of my skin it bothers me so badly. I want to scream and shout and stand on every street corner and make every person aware of this. When I pass what I know in my spirit is a brothel, I picture young children and young women-trapped helplessly in those rooms and it takes every ounce of energy in me not to burst through those doors and do something. How can we just pass by? How can we not DO SOMETHING?! NOW! These victims are chained up. Broken. Horribly abused. Crying out for help in their spirit. And unheard. Without hope.

I have to believe that this injustice is something Jesus hates. Something He'd physically be stomping all over if He was walking across earth today. Something He'd be unstoppably active and vocal about. Without apology.
Wait!......... So then........ Why He isn't doing these things now?.....
Why is He allowing this?................ And then it hit me.

 WE are Jesus on Earth. We are called to be His hands and feet.
What does the LORD require of us?
-"To Seek Justice, Love Mercy, and walk Humbly with thy God." Micah 6:8.
-"But don't just listen to God's Word. You must do what it says.
  Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves." James 1:22.
God's Word talks openly and often about seeking justice, taking care of those who can't take care of themselves. Standing up for those who need it. Jesus IS at work. He IS diligently rescuing and redeeming. But only a small percent of those trafficked are rescued. That's inexcusable. And I wonder if perhaps, one of the reasons this hasn't already been stamped out is because not enough people are realizing that Jesus does wait for us. He does want and need us to be Him in this World. Sure. He could handle it on His own. But He CHOOSES to wait for us. He is allowing us the privilege to CHOOSE working for Him and with Him. He is allowing us to take part in what He's doing. He's waiting on us to choose this. What a blessing and honor! To work for the ONE who can't be stopped. To have the ONE who created this Universe on our side as we squash and eliminate the most horrific crime imaginable and the other crimes it ends up entailing. But we need to get going. Get active. The 30 million can't cry out for help. They can't get out. They NEED us. They need Y-O-U. We have the God of all resources on our side. We have each other. If the church came together with all of this truth in the forefront, we would be un-stoppable. I believe it's possible to wipe this out for good. I believe it's up to us. I believe it's up to YOU. You can make a difference. You can.

 I don't yet know what the future contains for me. But I am glad God moved me here where this is huge. I am glad for the year of developing relationships with organizations that are actively rescuing girls here in town and across the globe. And I'm excited for a future that I am convinced will entail working to end this. WE can and WILL be their freedom. I'd love to see you on that journey. I have resources if you're interested.

Monday, November 25, 2013


I've been wrestling with and talking lately about this pressure I constantly sense to have a life plan. My friend works here in Houston for a mega-church as a worship leader. She gets to travel a lot and do some of the coolest things. I'm quite envious of her talent and the job she has. And even she was telling me this week that she's been wondering about it lately. Feeling pressure to move up. Make her way. Have more income & stability. We both agreed that we feel like maybe if we just figure out how to get things good and stable, we would be doing God a favor. And we wondered out loud if even when working for a church there's pressure coming from within to move in that direction with life. Stability. The goal. 

But then my friend said something so simple yet so profound. She was talking about recently really worrying over it. In her words: "I was spending time trippin' over it for a while & then all of a sudden I realized what a waste that is. Because I'm the ONLY one tripping. God's not tripping. It's not as if anything I do to be more stable affects or improves His plan for my life." Yes. Exactly. 

It is a waste. We act like we can improve things. When in reality His plan is more brilliant than anything we could come up with in the first place. And the energy wasted on the much that could be spent on so many better things!  I guarantee stability and finances are the least of His concerns. He owns it all already. He came shift it around anytime He wants. 

With that as our focus, we can confidently go against the flow of the "normal" and practice perhaps the largest and most amazing act possible as the children of The King. Be still & breathe. It's not up to us. Let's stop functioning like it is. 

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Church and polka dots.

A few matching luggage bags. When I take them on vacation, I get teased for needing more than one of their space on the adventure. Funny how suddenly those same bags look so different when everything I own is in them. It becomes strangely daunting. I look at them. I remember dragging them through the dirt on more than several occasions in Mexico. Wondering if the airline would ever find them in South Africa. And on the way to Kenya, rolling them through 3 countries in 30 hours-always with the "click-click-click-click" of the wheels echoing behind me and bouncing almost hauntedly off the hallways of the airports at 2 or 3 am. 

Quite differently this time, they seem so small. Sitting there busting at the seams  with clothing and pictures and a few special trinkets I have hauled halfway across the world. It sinks in that this is what's left to my name. I stare at them. I think about the fact that one month ago I had 4 times this much stuff, a room of my own, and a car. Every time I went to Target, I'd run into people I know. Every day at work, I knew the names of hundreds of people I made drinks for. And on a Sunday morning I could walk into any room at church and find "family." 

Everything is so different. Constantly transitioning. I haven't even unpacked my suitcase in the last month. I moved to Texas and then went to New York for 5 days and then came back to a project that involved moving locations across town. (I finally get one wall of a bedroom tomorrow.) Today I sat at church and didn't know a soul. And I didn't recognize any faces at the store. I had some moments of almost panic, just wanting to lay eyes on someone who knows me. Who I have history with. Longing for the hug or shared glance that ends up being an entire conversation.  

As I was struggling today with wanting something familiar, I realized I did have it.  It may not be a hug or the words of my friends that I am missing, but there WAS something I know right in front of me today. The Word of my King was taught. I sang songs I've known my entire life-the depth of "here I raise my ebineezer" just as powerful here as anywhere else. And there was something else this evening that I found comfort in. One other thing that has been old and familiar to me during the last 30 days. It's those danged polka dot suitcases. Oh, hey, old friends. Thanks for strangely being with me in yet another new place. Thanks for being consistent. 

Thursday, November 14, 2013


I recently began reading the book Undaunted by Christine Caine. I've rarely had a book capture my attention so quickly and entirely the moment I opened it. This is from the first chapter: 
"I offered no excuses that day, but I did know that there were reasons. Reasons that, when we hear God's call, when we feel that gentle (or not so gentle) urging of God's Spirit for us to make a bold step, take a risk, serve others, save a life, commit-we so often hold back. 

It's because we don't feel empowered. 
We don't feel qualified.
We think we lack the courage, the strength, the wisdom, the money, the experience, the education, the organization, the backing.

We feel like Moses when, from out of the burning bush, God called him to speak for him before Pharaoh. And Moses answered "Pardon your servant, Lord. I have never been eloquent....I am slow of speech and tongue......please send someone else." (Exodus 4:10-13) 

Not me, God.
I'm afraid. 

Not long ago, that is exactly how I would have responded. But it has never been my desire to be daunted, to be afraid, to be unable to respond to God's call. Is it yours? I doubt it. I think that you, like me, want to be able to say instead, "here I am Lord-send me." We don't want to sound like Moses, stammering around in search of excuses. And we don't need to. Because, just as God gave Moses exactly what he needed to accomplish great things for God, he will equip us in just the same way. If he calls us to slay giants, he will make us into giant slayers. 

God doesn't call the qualified. He qualifies the called."  

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

The secret life of our Newsfeeds.

Recently, I've been more thankful than ever for Facebook, Instagram, and snapchat because it allows me to stay connected with everyone I love even though there are miles, time zones, busy schedules, and contacts being lost on my phone. However, I've had an inckling about something that I haven't heard a lot of people discuss. I was analyzing this issue the other day (because that's how I do), and I think I stumbled upon something that seems so simple but is so deep.......

The newsfeed. What if I told you that your newsfeed (or equivalent on Insta and snap) was much more of a destructive tool than you think? Some people would claim it doesn't effect them at all. Some-like me-if I am completely honest and real- can examine their actions and emotions in response to hanging out online often and see it. Here's what I mean......

1.) When I'm on often, scrolling through my friend's posts, I don't realize it at the moment but something shifts within me. I will many times walk away from my phone with a sinking negativity about my life. Or a jealously of everyone else's. At this time in my life, my Newsfeeds look very much like this: "Baby. Baby. Baby. Engagement. Baby. Baby. Wedding. Baby. A bunch of people I love together whom I've lost contact with. Baby. New boyfriend. Baby. Travel. Baby........" You get the picture. It's hard for me to see this every time I log on without feeling badly about myself and my life. It's not as if there are many others my age I know of who are completely single; trying to be as healthy as possibly and flourish as largely as they can. It can be even more painful at moments to see all the high schoolers you once mentored getting married. I want to be married and have kids SO badly. And now. (Honestly. I'm not old, but I'm not that young for having kids either.) I've come to a conclusion that Newsfeeds can rub this in my face & cause me to play the comparison game which will destruct my self-confidence. And I wonder if I just have a weird issue with it or if there are others out there who are being affected a lot by this too. Maybe feeling at times that their life is not exciting or good enough when looking at their friend's daily posts. 

2.) I am having more of an issue lately with people being on snapshot and Instagram while hanging out. I feel like it does two things: a.) tells the person they're with that snapchatting and instagraming other people is more important than good conversation and making memories & 
b.) robs THEM from learning and maintaining healthy face-to-face relationships.  

Maybe I'm a very strange person. But I have an inckling this whole newsfeed thing might quietly be more destructive than we think if we're not aware and careful. That being said, I have no plans to cease my use of these things. Just to be very careful of allowing them to impact me I'm certain ways. 

Sunday, November 3, 2013

The beginning

Greetings from Houston! 
Wow. So much has happened in a few short weeks. I've been trying to get to know the city. It's a transition to be without a car. Taking the Metro requires extra planning and extra time. (It took me several hours to get to church today. But oh, was it worth it!) 

The apprenticeship has started off well. All the apprentices from the U.S. went to New York for 5 days of training. It was wonderful. Tracee, who is in charge of the apprentices, Nicole, who's with our Philly site, and Dan, the president of CSM, both spoke on a vast array of subjects. After having spent time with them, I can honestly say that I am 100% behind this incredible organization. Their heart and mission and way are so healthy and good. I have an unbelievable sense of peace after being in a room with them hearing their heart for several days. 

This next year is beginning to take shape. Jesus has begun to place the pieces of the puzzle together for me in wonderful ways. The goal for the year is to really dig in and try to get to know myself well. Learn my giftings and grow in them. I get to serve my community and be Jesus to them while learning more about being a leader. Part of what the year should hold involves community at a church and mentoring by people doing what you want to. 

 I attended church for the first time here today. I went to a church that I've followed and podcasted since it's birth 2 years ago. I was apprehensive about just walking in and being comfortable and connecting with anyone. It's not as if I'm used to going to new churches all the time. And walking into one where I know no one is TOTALLY abnormal:) 
Fortunately, everyone was extremely friendly. Several young ladies my age introduced themselves immediately and invited me to small groups this week. And I got to speak with the pastor and wife right away-whom I know from a distance. And Miss Beth attends and it's always fun to chuckle a bit with my "Momma". They spoke about loving the orphan. About entering into the pain rather than just trying to fix it.  About how Mercy enters in and heals from the inside out. It sits in the pain with someone. About being undefiled and pure and how we have to enter into a defiling situation with our purity to be HIS hands of healing. I wish all my friends who are adopting and fostering could hear today's message. Y'all should podcast it. 
Anyway, I felt so at home and I'm thankful for the beginning of a new community. 

The next project is a ministry partner. What I get to do is volunteer my time 20 hrs a week to a local outreach of my choice. It's looking like I found a promising one. There's a large park with a rec/community center and they have many activities from after-school programs to senior citizens card nights. I am looking at volunteering there; helping kids with homework, helping seniors out, AND......(drumroll please)......I'm hoping to start a Zumba program there!!!! Yeah! I'm very excited to be reaching out to the community and establishing relationships with everyone who comes. If there's time and interest I may even consider wanting to begin a community theatre program. 

That's the nutshell for now. Things are vastly different than they were at home. But it's good here and God is up to huge things. I'm eager to live simply and more quietly and to grow in my gifts and love of Him.

If anyone reading this feels so inclined, I definitely appreciate prayer. I'm in a huge city alone. I need peace & confidence being so independent. (It can feel strange & daunting at moments). I need community to establish very quickly. I need smooth planning for my outreaches. I need more financial support. And I need Jesus.  To show up. To be HUGE for me. To continue healing MY wounds and ugliness and ministering to my spirit. Because I want to do this life right. Meaning-filled, significant, powerful, and dynamic. For the Kingdom. 

Thank you for being The Body. Thank you for who you are in the Kingdom. Thank you for being YOU. 
I'm crazy about you! 

Saturday, October 19, 2013


Everything about the way this next year will be lived out is so vastly different from the way in which my life has been spent for the last many years. Extreme simplicity. Minimal possessions. No vehicle. Infinitely more time to focus and concentrate. Something other than logging hours at a job for 40-65 hours a week. It's enough change to shock me and make me want to sob with a strange mix of emotions & almost feels like I'm in another country or something.

I'm very excited. Excited to pull myself far from the several very strong factors that contributed to severe overwork, clouded views of myself and life, and too much stress. (Sometimes there are things that just pull you too far in the wrong direction and instead of exhaustedly standing there trying to fight it the best thing you can do is physically walk away). I'm happy to be much more simple with much less technology. I'm practically shaking with anticipation over getting to be still and listen to the voice of my King rather than hit the ground running by 4:15 every morning. And I can't wait to listen to the Spirit as a job description and practice functioning in my gifts with my co-workers.

The best way to move towards being as dynamic and powerful for the Kingdom as possible is to remove what's in the way.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Too scared NOT to.

You would think after years of short term missions trips I would understand that God loves to provide. However, the last few weeks I have been finding myself terrified numerous times everyday. Obviously this is pointing out that I have some serious faith issues. It's not the giving up of my things or car or leaving home that bothers me. Its the fact that I have to fully trust God to provide for me financially every day. I have never been in a situation that requires this much trust before. On one hand, I want to say "No" to living like this. On the other, I am catching just a glimpse of who Jesus is and what it means to ignore Him when He calls you to go or do in utter blind faith. It means insulting Him. Telling Him He can't or doesn't care enough to handle it. It also means missing out on something that could possibly be more incredible than anything you'd imagined.

I've been reading George Meuller's writings a lot lately. I want half the faith this man had! He started that orphanage on nothing. He'd tell the kids to sit and pray for their meal, while having nothing to give them. Then He would thank God for the food He was about to provide. And every time, a bread or milk truck would break down right outside. Or someone would show up.

I keep going back to the concept of not seeing God do the impossible on a daily basis because we're too scared to live in a way that ALLOWS for it. As scared as I am to step into this new way of living in trust, I'm beginning to be more scared of saying no.

"How do you expect to strengthen your faith without allowing opportunities for your faith to be tried? It's in the trying of your faith that it becomes stronger." -George Mueller

Friday, October 4, 2013

Texas (Part 2)

I've talked for years about wanting to live in Texas. I have a thing about the south. So I'm okay with moving. With getting rid of many of my possessions and just going. With not having a car. With not knowing anybody there. It's a bit stretching, but I'm okay. The part I really struggle with is finances. You see, you have to raise support while you're an apprentice. You're living missionally. And THAT terrifies me. 

Since I was 14, I've worked. Always. I can't remember a time more than a few months long where I didn't have a job. I've worked too much and too hard if I'm just bluntly honest. I was taught the mentality of over-working being what there is to life and I still haven't fully unlearned it. (For the past 3 years, I've gotten up by 4:00am on a majority of my mornings. And I am WORN. Hey, I'm broken and Jesus is working on me, okay?)

The thought that I should raise $2500 in the next two weeks and around $900/month support for living and ministry expenses is mind-numbing. Like...I can't actually get my mind around it. Never have I lived life like this. Never. Moving everything I have alone to another part of the country on trust that God will prompt supporters for me to sustain?! So THIS is what it's like. I always wondered what my missionary friends felt. I don't know about them, but I've been breaking down all week. Fear is absolutely trying to paralyze me and take me over. I'm wrestling with God in a way I never have before. But here's two beautiful parts of that.....

1. I'm wrestling with God. Wrestling. Hmmm. Thinking about the act of wrestling. It's quite intimate, really. So maybe-just maybe-God is allowing me to go through this stage of wrestling because He wants intimacy with me. He wants to get all twisted and jumbled and close and personal. Hmmmm....

2. The Spirit prompted me the other day to remember being a younger child. When I was young, I didn't think about finances. That wasn't my concern. That was Daddy's job. I just hung out with him. Went where he went. Lived where he told me to. Rode along. Shopped when he shopped. Ate where he wanted to go eat. And it was my dad's job to take care of the money. Even to this day- I have never once doubted when he said he'd take care of it. And my father is just a guy. A flawed guy. So if I trust HIM so much, how much more can I trust that father GOD will provide?! It's not like He doesn't own it all, anyway! Yet here I am, worried and freaking out about providers. HE is the provider. HE has called me. I have to go hang out where he says. And trust he'll take care of the rest. I don't know about you, but I found that to be pretty cool! 

Texas (part 1)

It's one thing to rant and rave about being audacious and just jumping into an unknown adventure with Jesus rather than choosing to stay and have a life of "knowns" IN a place you know.

And we could spend all day talking about the fact that perhaps the reason we don't seem to witness the God of constant miracles and defiance of the impossible like in the "old days" is because we are choosing to live such a self-sufficient lifestyle that we aren't ALLOWING for it. 

But we could talk all day and it doesn't mean a thing. Even going on several trips half-way across the world doesn't mean THAT much when I know I'm coming home to a job and income and the ability to fend for myself. I THOUGHT I'd grasped trusting God to provide. But this week I'm finding out I haven't even begun to get the picture. 

On Monday I received a phone call that I'm accepted as an apprentice with an awesome organization called Center for Student Missions (CSM). They specialize in urban ministry/missions in larger cities throughout the U.S. And I get to enter a very cool program of training and learning about leadership in ministry/missions. 

So in two weeks, I will be on a plane moving to Houston, Texas. Not sure of what the next year holds or the adventures to be had. Simultaneously ecstatic and terrified about this new chapter filled with new everything. 

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Maybe I choose tired.

I'm tired. Just.So.Tired. 
Tired of working so much more than most of the whiners I serve every morning. Tired of the feelings of inadequacy I experience with making coffee at my age. Tired of fighting with my weight. Tired of the shame that quietly worms it's way in and is larger than life before I get a chance to realize it's there. Tired of being single my entire life and having nobody to share mine with. Tired of taking care of everything and making every decision all alone. Tired. Tired of well-meaning people who apparently know it all and have the answer to my "predicaments". Tired of Christianese solutions. But most of all? I'm tired of the lie. The lie that I do have to get this all figured out. That I do need to get a plan. That I do need to lose weight, rope a man, find that perfect career. Choose the house with the right picket fence. I'm tired of falling for the entirely empty lie I'm handed daily on a silver platter that it's not okay to be tired. To wrestle with God and be a little grieved and depressed during these seasons. I'm tired of keeping my mouth so shut because I can't find people who get it and I wouldn't want to offend someone. I'm tired of believing it would be better if I wasn't tired. Because what I'm learning right now is that it's in the desperately weak and tired seasons that we get to experience fully and mind-blowingly the one who doesn't answer to the concept of "tired". If that's what it takes to know Him this well....I'll deal with being tired. 

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

ALL of it.

I'm so thankful for technology. When I get up at 4:00 in the mornings to get ready for work, I often listen to several of my favorite teachers via podcast. It's important to me-we should ALWAYS be proactively feeding ourselves on truth. The amount of garbage the world is constantly feeding us is so intense we could feed on truth all day and still have a hard time balancing things. But because we're not feeding on truth, we often don't see how intense the world shouts lies. (Side tangent: we should ALWAYS be listening to a variety of people. If we insist on sticking with just one, we're being unhealthy and they will end up in a pedistal.) 

This morning I was listening to David Platt, a wonderful man. He was sharing stories about his time in several countries in which the government in-humanely tortures & kills people if they find out they're participating in any acts of Christianity. He was simply talking about his experience with people who are desperately hungry for teaching in the Word & ways of Christ. People who sneak to houses at 2 am just to worship together. Who know with every passing day it may very well be their last before they're caught. There was nothing about David's talk that was trying to evoke an emotion or commitment or desire or action. He was simply sharing what's going on in the underground churches. As an encouragement to us.  
BUT....(aw. You were looking for that!)....
I have never been so convicted in my life. 

If you know me, you know I have a large heart for Africa. At least what I've seen of two of its countries. I've been passionate about this for years. You probably know that I'd love to live and serve there. So you would THINK that I have an attitude of wanting to be a missionary. And in a way, I do. I'm okay with not having a career or home or newer car. I'm okay with not owning much. With moving halfway across the globe. Plenty of people I know and love are already doing it, have paved the way, and are the kind of brave hero I will never be. And that's fine. But I realized this morning that my heart is not as in tune with Jesus as I may have so arrogantly assumed at one point. 

I'm willing to work full-time for a ministry here. To give myself to pouring out in order that other believers will go deeper. I'm also willing to pick up and move to Africa. I know I would love it. But here's the's because EVEN Africa is comfortable. It's third world. It's sad. It's a whole different culture & way of living. But it's comfortable. I can love and minister and freely be the hands of feet of Jesus if I wish. Awesome? Yes. But safe. I would not get more than a few curious inquiries about what the heck I was doing living amongst a different people. I can walk the streets openly, work with the people, live out the church. And I'd come home. I'd furlow. I'd eventually move back and settle here at some point. See? Safe. 

I realized this morning Jesus is asking for my ALL. We always talk about that. We sing about it. We even say we've given Him our all. But have we? Honestly. Have we?!?! I haven't. In a flash today, I saw a side of myself I'd never payed attention to before. The Spirit asked me if I'd be willing to go "there". As I listened to David speaking, I pictured it. Having to pretend I was going for alterior motives simply to get into the country. Lying to government officials at customs. Smuggling in Bibles and discipleship materials. Being disguised and hid in cars in the middle of the night just to travel to a house somewhere with all the blinds pulled. Being escorted secretly into the the house where it was overflowing with 50 people Just thirsting for worship, teaching, discipleship. Doing church at 2:00 in the morning. Risking being caught each day. And if caught, tortured in ways more haneous than anything I've ever seen in the movies. Beat. Raped. Beat more. Burned. Cut. Starved. Thrown in a stone cell with no bed or toilet. Who knows......killed slowly. Because I taught Bible Study. Am I willing to do THAT with my life? Leave tomorrow and possible die this week? THAT is what Jesus wants from me. The willingness to say yes to THAT. Whether I actually do it or not is hardly the point in this moment. The point is seeing that Jesus said "Go & make disciples of ALL nations". The underground church is "all nations" & IS desperate for teachers. Kind of hard to argue with what Jesus says there. People can try telling me that it's not required of every believer, only especially "called" ones. I just have to say that I can't find anywhere in Scripture saying "Go if you're feeling extra called".
And don't tell me I'm young and shouldn't throw my life away. There is NOTHING more worth throwing my life into. NOTHING. 

I may end up married with kids in Modesto. Homesteading on a ranch in Washington or Montana. Working for a big-haired mega ministry in Texas or Georgia. Living among the Voodoo culture of the french cooridor in New Orleans or the shacks of the Bayou. Running an orphanage in Africa. Who knows? I hope it's one of those things. But, Lord change my heart and mold me, I need to be willing to give him my A-L-L. He's big enough. That I know. 

Monday, September 9, 2013

The Kenyan files #1

I've yet to talk a lot about the trip to Kenya. I came home and hit the ground running with a project for Agape that has kept me extremely busy. That being over, I can finally begin sharing a bit.

One of the most explosive parts of being in Kenya was the intensely different way in which the culture walks out their days. We have so much here that we often go for very long periods of time able to work and purchase whatever we need. But in a world of poverty, it's as different from that mindset as can possibly be. A majority of Kenyans live solely on faith. Having to trust God for daily provisions. And often when they're praying in church on Sunday, you'll commonly hear praise and thanks over surviving the week and having enough to eat. Very different from the daily Taco Bell stops that helped me weigh 230 pounds once upon a time! 

The upside to the "Kenyan way" is something that has shifted my head so much. Because of this faith-based way of living; crying out to and deeply and desperately depending on God for survival, I witnessed God in a completely different way. He come through. And He provides. And because they're witnessing this constantly in a way we don't get the BLESSING to, it automatically makes many of the people there extremely deep and powerful and deeply peaceful and beautiful in their dynamic intimacy with Jesus. They seem to move and breath right along with the Spirit, just because it's their way. Knowing He performs miracles daily, expecting them, and because of that praying in dynamic faith that I believe almost releases and allows God to move and work in a way that we don't often evoke here. And THAT is something I want. 

I've always wanted to be powerful and dynamic and deeply intimately connected to Jesus in a way that evokes miracles
when I pray. And my time and my witness of daily miracles while there made me want it even more than in the past. And now I don't want to settle until I've become that kind of woman. Hard to talk openly about, yes!? But there it is nonetheless. 

We can all be that. We can all adopt a bit of bold, expectant, Kenyan attitude in our prayers and day that evoke the impossible on a regular basis. Maybe if we did, we'd truly start something incredible. 

Sunday, August 18, 2013


In the last few days alone I've witnessed numerous occasions in which families are clearly tearing apart. A car pulling over to the side of the road and a mom shoving her teenager out & driving away. A pick-up rammed into a light & a father screaming at his son about it at the top of his lungs. Several customers who's spouses just left them or are cheating on them. Co-workers who's parents are immature, irresponsible, & selfish. It leaves me grieving deeply for our world. The pain so many people experience. And it leaves me with the renewed awareness that we do indeed have a very real & active enemy. One who's goals are to leave us unaware of his activity & to get us to believe it's hopeless.

The truth? There is ALWAYS hope. Nope. You're not the exception & neither is your family. There is no situation that cannot be turned around. It's just that we so often think people are healthy and put together just because. There is NEVER a "just because" in the equation when it comes to health. If someone or some family is healthy, I guarantee that it came by hard work and fighting through blood, sweat, & tears. Too many people are afraid to say this. But it's the reality & the truth. So I'm going to say it....

It's extremely difficult. But health is worth what it takes. So please. Do the hard work. Get the help you need. Be as extreme as it takes. Go wherever it requires. Be open & honest. It won't kill you. It will make you stronger and more beautiful than ever. Fight for your family. Fight for health. There's something greater than you can imagine just around that corner. 

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

I refuse.

My heart is about to explode. 

 I see it everywhere. I cannot turn to the left or right without it in my face. Every time I check out at a grocery store. Every T.V. Show from the 80s on. Every picture of every singer or actor. Every movie. Every advertisement. Even every fiction book that's written today. An obsession with weight and the "American Dream". It is so subtle and so infiltrated into everything we see and do that we don't even realize we're completely living in bondage to it. Go ahead and call me extreme right now. But keep reading, because I'm about to prove it......

I've gained weight lately. It's no secret. I may as well say it. It's not as if you won't notice by looking at me. Why is it that somewhere deep down, I feel ashamed of this? Why do I sub-consciously try to hide it?.......

A lot of people are asking me about my trip to Africa. If I'm going long-term. And if not, what my plans are. I realized the other day that when I respond, it's with very well-worded and cleverly thought-out "Christianese" answers. What I know will sound good and mature and impressive. Heaven forbid I should be anything but totally put together. 

Do you see it? Do you see the bondage here? I'm using myself as an example to prove that most of us are caught in it whether we think so or not. We are living as every other Amercian is. You may wonder, what's wrong with that? Why am I always speaking against living as a typical American? Why is this so horrible?

Look around you. How is Amercia doing?Are her citizens thriving? Filled with joy? Flourishing? Healthy? Victorious? Or are they busy? worried? striving? Running? Often getting sick? stressed out? being controlled by fear: Fear of failing? Not being good enough? Not being successful enough? Not having a title like everyone else? Not HAVING as everyone else does? Not looking the same? Are their lives filled with empty striving?.....

Just seeing how everyone else is living makes me not want it. We are miserable, hopeless, often ill, hating ourselves, obsessed with our sizes, and living in endless cycles of striving. This is absolutely anything but the way things are intended to be. This is NOT the way God intends His heirs to live. 

I refuse. I refuse to be like the 65 year old woman with flat-ironed hair and blush and lipstick in abundance just to be on that treadmill next to me every day. I refuse to count every single calorie that I put into my mouth anymore. And I apologize for the endless posts while obsessing over "fitness", which was actually living and breathing "skinny" and nothing short of bondage. 

I refuse to create some grandiose plan to sound great or put together when people ask me what the next step is for my life is. I'm done pretending. I'm done trying to appease those in my life who seem to think I need to have a plan. I'm done bending my back to our society who says I'm crazy for not having everything layed out. 

God's word says we are to love Him & know Him more. That's it. Period. I think there's reasons it simply commands this and nothing more:

1.) The more you know who He is and His heart, the more freed up you become of anxiety, worry, stress, comparison and self-rejection. Which, BTW, could arguably be the very deep and underlying cause of almost any known health issue. Yes. I went there. Yes. Knowing who God is more may result in better health. Let that sink in a bit......

2.)If we stop trying to figure out what to do, or what's RIGHT for us to do, and spend that time studying Jesus and Kingdom, we will invariably end up knowing what to do because we'll know where His heart is and Where He's up to things. It's all in The Word. Alive and active, folks. Alive and active. 

Hi. I'm Elisabeth. I'm going to be 31 this week. I have absolutely no idea where I'm going or what I'm doing with my life. I don't own a house. My car runs on grace. I make enough $ to survive. Period. And I am ridiculously in love with Jesus Christ. Period. I want others to get how free they can be. That's my passion. That's what I love. I'm not ashamed of where I am anymore. I'm radically loved by the King of Kings. The living one who hand-knit me together. Nothing else matters. Nothing else goes with me when I die. Jesus. Just Jesus. The end. 

Thursday, July 25, 2013

The effects of a summer spent in Africa, Little House, Mark Twain, and Downton Abbey.

I ache for some of the older things:

-Good, meaty conversation. 
-Learning a friend over lunches or teas rather than through Facebook, Instagram, Vine, and Snapchat. 
-That flip of excitement in your stomach when you open the mailbox and quickly recognize the handwriting on the return address, the envelope filled with carefully thought-through words intended just for you and your heart to read. 
-Spontaneous and adventurous roadtrips that are made up as they go. 
-And there's nothing I long for more than being in the theatre again. 

I want to purposefully get back to this. I want to rebel against the concrete jungle and busily packed days of California in 2013.  I am not any GOOD at rebeling against it. But I want to. And I hope there's at least one kindred spirit out there who would join me. 

Sunday, July 21, 2013


I have been told so often lately that I need to grow up & figure out my life career-wise. The response I keep getting to that from The Lord is "WAIT"! So I looked it up in Websters: 

to remain stationary in readiness or expectation
2:to look forward expectantly
3:to hold back expectantly 
4: to be ready and available
5 : to remain temporarily neglected or unrealized

Also, I did some research into the Hebrew word often used for "wait" in the Old Testament. The term means "to bind up". Back then, they often made thick rope by binding or weaving a lot of string together. The more time spent binding it, the stronger and thicker the rope when it was finally used. Get it?!?! 

Seems to me waiting may be one of the best and most aggressive things we could possibly do. He's got things under control. That's not our job. 

Thursday, July 18, 2013

In the quiet.

It's in those annoying moments when you wake up much too early and you just can't go back to sleep. Or when you are laying in bad late at night seemingly unable to finally drift off to Neverland. It's that one stitch that acts up and the pain wakes you. 

In the quietness and very still moments between very late and too early, there is something special. Something different. Nobody awake to text or snapchat. Nobody tweeting anything new to read. Nobody around to talk with.  Except the one who probably woke you up. He is jealous for you. He wants you to seek Him, pursue Him. He waits patiently and hopefully for you to desire His presence. He wants to completely take your breath away and sweep you off of your feet. But He doesn't force Himself upon you. A true gentleman, He watches. He enjoys being stunned by your beauty and standing right here, at the ready to intimately sweep you off your feet and into something better than a fairy tale. All you have to do is let Him. Invite Him. Believe Him. Go ahead. Dive in. Everything is about to change. 

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

I am an African

My friend Lisa sent this poem my way a while ago and I believe it's more appropriate now than ever before.....

I am an African
Not because I was born there
But because my heart beats with Africa’s
I am an African
Not because my skin is black
But because my mind is engaged by Africa
I am an African
Not because I live on its soil
But because my soul is at home in Africa
When Africa weeps for her children
My cheeks are stained with tears
When Africa honours her elders
My head is bowed in respect
When Africa mourns for her victims
My hands are joined in prayer
When Africa celebrates her triumphs
My feet are alive with dancing

I am an African
For her blue skies take my breath away
And my hope for the future is bright
I am an African
For her people greet me as family
And teach me the meaning of community
I am an African
For her wildness quenches my spirit
And brings me closer to the source of life

When the music of Africa beats in the wind, My blood pulses to its rhythm
And I become the essence of sound
When the colours of Africa dazzle in the sun, My senses drink in its rainbow
And I become the palette of nature
When the stories of Africa echo round the fire, My feet walk in its pathways
And I become the footprints of history
I am an African
Because she is the cradle of our birth
And nurtures an ancient wisdom
I am an African
Because she lives in the world’s shadow
And bursts with a radiant luminosity
I am an African
Because she is the land of tomorrow
And I recognise her gifts as sacred

Thursday, July 11, 2013


She was different. She was extremely beautiful. Not by worldly standards. But severely striking in a way that couldn't be denied. A way that required-commanded-you to notice it. Not that she ever realized it. But everybody around her did. They found themselves to have an unexplainable fascination and gravitation toward her. And the fact that she was so oblivious to it made her even more desirable to be around. She was boldly confident. Held herself with elegance as royalty who'd been trained would. That always made others wonder, Curious as to how she became this way and what her story was. There was a gleam in the corner of her eye that you almost didn't notice but sub-consciously took in. It told you that the confidence came from some kind intense journey of hard work to become the person she is. A story tucked away just at the edges. You just knew that someone doesn't become this way by accident of chance. 
The way that she held herself with mighty authority made you stand in awe. The power that she held. The way she approached Jesus when she spoke with Him. It rang strangely similar to a fully-armored and engaged soldier. Not idle, but as if in the midst of war. Speaking and checking in with fellow soldiers at regular intervals, all the while moving with ease and having a breezy and peaceful calmness. You just knew that whether she had shared it with you or not, she had helped the helpless. Gotten down into the ditch with the sinner. And laid hands on and seen the diseased healed. 
And somehow you knew that she was quietly changing the world. 

We can all be her. We SHOULD all be her. I'm done with excuses. I'm done with comparison. I refuse to continue watching and reading and looking at even the most normal material if it means being a "normal" woman, American, or Christian. If we put our foot down, dig in, and do the hard work, we CAN be this. We can overcome normalcy, complacency, our culture, boredom, insecurity, selfishness, and addiction. We CAN be stunning in a way that goes deeper than anything our society says. And we CAN change the world. We CAN. 

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

On the streets.

Today I was on the streets learning to connect with many boys who've run away. Former Agape boys. New boys. All kinds of boys. All on glue. All addicted. All literally living in dumpsters. All without any apparent future unless Christ is in the equation. Ah. But He is. And this is so basic. Yet when you are in the middle of watching Jesus do this in front of your eyes, it's mind-blowing. 

We literally ended up in the back-alleys of the slum. We walked right up to the spot where all the boys buy the glue they sniff.

And right before me I watched Jesus save two boys from the streets. Just like that. And it got me thinking.....

What stops US from living life in a pit? Any kind of pit? All the pits? Are we so special and have we done something to deserve a better life than living on a street  in the slums of a third-world country? Or addicted to drugs or alcohol? Severely mentally ill? Have we somehow come to DESERVE living in America? 

Absolutely not. Saved by Grace is all we are. Nothing more. And we need to stop acting like we're entitled. 

Today was an allegory for me. We all need to bend down, get into that slum and be willing to get dirty in the process of extending the hand grace to somebody else. And if we aren't actively doing this...... well, I worry. 

Monday, July 8, 2013

That hard-to-say stuff.

I had every intention of writing quite a bit while on this trip. But I'm discovering the very vibrant reality of not being able to actually put into words many of the experiences that are taking place. Sure. I could try to explain what things are like. And I'm sure I will at some point. (Mostly with pictures.) But it's impossible to "get" it without being here. Besides, more than anything else, I have one thing right now to say. And it may surprise you....

My resolve has only been deepened. The urgency with which I feel it quickened. A passion that burns out of control set dangerously ablaze. I will not lay off. Stop speaking about it. Or quiet down. I refuse to sensor my statuses and topics of conversation to avoid offending "friends".
And I stand cemented in my convictions. 

We need to completely quit living a friendly, convieniant, acceptable Christianity. Too long have we looked the same week in and week out. Too long have we lived a life so afraid of allowing the Holy Spirit rein that we end up becoming un-identifiable to the neighborhood except the 2 hours we are at church on a Sunday. Too long have we allowed complacency and easy choices to replace audaciously giving up all we have and walking with open hands and hearts into whatever He would
choose. Too long have we replaced healing others, powerfully stopping injustice, and teaching the flawless truth of Jesus Christ with 9-5, rush hours, break room gossip, and absolutely empty status updates. Too long have we lived as the rest of this world when we are supposed to live and kings and queens, walking every step of our lives filled with authority, beauty, and representation of an Ultimate King who is very much alive and active. Yet one we have the intimate honor of calling "Daddy". And too long have we been afraid of saying these things for fear of what our "circles" will think. 

It's time, church.
And it begins with me. 

Sunday, June 23, 2013


I struggle severely sometimes when looking at my newsfeeds. The things that people post, talk about, and complain about tend to infuriate me. I get it if one isn't a believer. There isn't an example, standard, and higher goal or calling thrust upon them. But if one is in Christ, they have no excuse. The self-centered, high maintenance, materialistic, image-focused, American Dream life that we've begun to whine about obtaining as if somebody owes it to us makes my stomach knot up. And it's sad how difficult it is for me to find like-minded people in this. VERY sad. 

I wish there was a way to force every single person to spend time working in the heart of the impoverished areas of our towns right here or a third world setting. Because if the American church doesn't begin getting some perspective, it's not going to be a pretty. The time for revival is now. And I'm talking about WITHIN the church. A revival of heart and focus and purpose. And I've drawn the circle around my own two feet. It begins here. With me. 

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Loving the impossible.

I never get tired of the way Jesus shows off. Seriously!

 Yesterday, I received an e-mail about my up-coming trip to Kenya with some details I had not been aware of. Several of these details meant some extra expenses that are hard to cover when you're working as a barista. So I naturally forgot most of my Believing God stuff and let the human-nature side take over. I panicked. I kicked and screamed against God's chest with frustration and fear. I sobbed. I became irrational. And over-dramatic Liz took over sounding strangely close to a certain donkey we all know and love who delights in pointing out the negative in every situation. I finally  threw up my hands and, exasperated, said "Alright, then. I can't do anything to make sure I can afford this. If it's gonna work, YOU have to do something." 

I'm thinking at that very moment His response was "THANK YOU! Now that you've finally handed me the reins, I can show you a little something." And show me He did. Within 2 hours, I was being told a check was coming my way. And then before I could be done being blown away by THAT, I had more money today. Jesus is rapidly turning my world upside down and around in a way that will make sure I'm never the same. He continues to show me how much He delights in doing the impossible. Every day. And the more I get to do the harder things, the more He pours out. I wouldn't be witnessing miracles big and small, left and right, if I didnt have the honor of living a life that requires utter dependence on Him. 

...Which makes me think again about the fact that we may be missing out on watching Him do things that are of ginormous proportion because we don't want to let go and completely say "YES!" to faith-living. To complete Kingdom-work. And how sad would it be to never experience the God who hand-knit you together doing things for YOU that no human being could ever even consider. Heal the leaper? Cast out demons? demolish strongholds? Banish disease? Tell people who've never heard that their creator walked Earth and died just to have a love-affair with them? Yep. Still can happen every single day. If we learn to start loving the impossible because we know it's the perfect formula for Him to show up and be BIG.  I'm Believing God. 

Sunday, June 9, 2013


Sometimes I think we honestly desire to hear the voice of God, but we don't know how to listen. We spend some time in His Word, we ask for an answer. And then we sit in silence for a few minutes and hear nothing. We drive to work with Christian music, hoping the answer will come in a song as we so often hear others claim it did for them. And by the time we've been at work a few hours, we've become frustrated with the "silence". So we subtly throw our hands up and begin focusing on other things. On the tasks before us. And when the day is over, we're tired. We drive home or to the gym. We flip on our shows. Make dinner. Hang out with the family or friends. And unintentionally, we've forgotten about the way we poured our desires out before The Lord. We subconsciously give up. 

Maybe, just maybe, Jesus has been sitting with us the entire time. Maybe He delights in the fact that we poured ourselves out before Him. And maybe-since He is outside of time itself-He has already answered our prayers. Not the way we expect. Not WHEN we expect. But even better. And bigger. And nicer. But maybe, just maybe, we give up too soon and cease eagerly anticipating the answer. And maybe that can cause us to miss seeing the moment two months from now that the answer comes out of nowhere, dropped right in front of us. Beautifully packaged in a way only someone who knows us intimately can perfectly deliver.