Monday, June 27, 2011





I have written lots recently about the ways that Jesus radically entered my life 4 yrs. ago and pretty much changed everything. 
I do this for one reason.
 Because I had no idea that He could.
Change EVERYTHING...
I was under the illusion that salvation meant that you prayed a prayer and life was instantly easy.
And boring.
And full of rules and people happy to let you know if you broke any.
It seemed naive.
And judgemental.
So I avoided Him.
And charted my own course.
I focused on all of the things that were supposed to make me feel on the inside the way other people looked on the outside.
I wanted more. I needed more. I deserved more.
My eyes focused only on the voids that needed filling.
And I tried harder and harder to write the story.
The one where I was the star.
And I kept coming up empty.
Afraid.
Exhausted.
Mad.
But one day I heard the right thing at the right moment.
And I chose.
I released my hands and surrendered the pen to Jesus.
It wasn't instant.
And I doubted.
It definitely hurt. 
What if?
Reborn and vulnerable,
it exposed me.
What if? What if? What if?
Surrender was scary.
It still is.
It forced clarity.
Many have not understood.
And the "what if's" have not disappeared entirely.
Joy seeped in.
Flooded in.
And it was different.
Radically different.
Simple.
Filling.
Relational.
Perfectly imperfect.
Always...imperfect.
ALWAYS.
A life now aware of  and transformed by moments, stories, choices, pain and blessings.
All of it designed to forever point me back to HIM.
Grace and deep dependency.
Truth.
Promises.
 And daily I learn to wait, to trust, to see.
To count.
This is how he fills the emptiness.
He is the gift.
His story is the only one that needs to be told.

Focusing my eyes on the gifts that are right in front of me and all joy,

  • beautiful and sweaty boy hugs, kisses and I love you's
  • a morning at the beach watching brothers laugh and ride waves
  • the tiniest seashells
  • 12 years of marriage...trusting and loving him more
  • hard conversations that lead to deeper understanding
  • long walks in muggy, hot weather
  • celebrations of baptism
  • the sound of beyblades in tupperware
  • aunts, uncles, cousins, friends and grandparents cheering on my oldest in his baseball tournament
  • his smile when he sees them all there and how he watches them
  • late night conversation with my brother
  • a seagull on the baseball field
  • girlfriends who tell it
  • grasshoppers
  • puppy love and hugs and kisses
  • singing in the car with the boys
  • the little people I get to work with who create and heal and trust me to walk beside them

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The Joy Project 40

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