schtuff Christians say..

Saturday, December 15, 2012

I understand the sentiment behind "Why are we surprised when God has been taken out of our schools" but it is in extremely BAD TASTE and ignorant to say/post such things as if GOD ALLOWED this to happen solely because He has been "removed" from our schools.  Man cannot "take GOD" out of anything.  He can refuse to acknowledge Him but GOD is GOD no matter what.  Not only that but how dare we assume that the families of those who lost children were not of strong faith and taught their children about GOD at home and at church!  Did God allow my son to die because I had removed Him from my life somehow?  Did God allow a mom or dad to have cancer or get in a car accident and die because they are not allowing God in their life?  Ignorance and pride to assume that we can use that as an excuse for the human condition that Jesus Christ came to die for.  The same human condition that resides in all of us and even after we give our lives over to Him the enemy still (as scripture puts it) roars and prowls like a lion seeking whom he may devour.  Do you think that we can in the same "christianeese" language state that when things go wrong in our lives that "the enemy is sure attacking me, I must be doing something right" and "well, that tragedy is not surprising seeing that we have taken God out of school".  It is utterly disgusting to me that as Christians we would be so blind to the absolute ridiculousness of such statements.  PRAY for wisdom before speaking.  SEEK God before blanket statements that include INNOCENT life that was taken by a person who obviously was mentally unstable (to put it mildly) and carried out an evil that is unspeakable. 
PRAY for those families!  PRAY that God will pour out His comfort and mercy.  Next time you turn on the television to make sure you get all the "details" from the media ask yourself.. “Why am I wasting time on consuming this information and hit your knees to pray.”  Put your money where you mouth is.  Stop evoking the name of GOD to prove points and ask God to BREAK YOUR HEART for the lost and broken.  Ask God to USE your life to comfort and love others in His name.  The next time you are in a tragic situation (which I was and stupid ..stupid things were said to me, I am sure with good intention but without wisdom) glean from the people God sends your way to comfort you and apply it the next time someone is walking through tragedy.

Jesus Christ and the superstar.....

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

     I don't claim to be a Biblical scholar.  I do not claim to be an authority on doctrine or theology but I do know that in my 18 years of being a Christian and reading the Bible I am yet to find someone who was a "superstar" because of their association with Jesus.  Yes, some of them had notoriety, but it always turns to rejection by the world. Yet, in today's "Christian" world we strive to be accepted by the world and to have notoriety and well.. to be superstars.  I have been guilty of this too...but why?  Why do I crave the acceptance of the world?  Why do I long for the world to hold me in high esteem?  Now, before you start your comment back to me about how we are to "love the world" and how I am being "judgmental" read the rest of my post and then decide if you feel that way.
      I lived in the world.  I rolled around in the filth, loneliness, anger, hatred, abuse and bitterness of the world.  I would go to church as a teenager with my Grandpa and curse out the youth pastor and tell everyone at the youth meeting that they were morons for following Jesus.  I took pride in being against Jesus.  I believed that God existed I just made the choice to not be on His side.  I know the desperation of wanting to be loved but being so caught up in sin that it blinds you to the truth.  I am grateful that in my rock bottom homeless days on the streets of Detroit that God spared my life.  I still do not know how, other than God spared it.  I remember quite clearly the decision made to give my life to Jesus.  I think about it often.  I remember the rejection I got from some of the people I used to hang out with.  I remember the feeling of not having a "friend" in the world.  I was changed. I worked very closely with the homeless community after giving my heart to Jesus.  I would give them food and a drink and then tell anyone who would listen what Jesus had done for me.  There were times when people would listen.  I even prayed with a few to accept Jesus as their savior.  But there were many who would laugh at me or threaten me and I would be rejected.  Only Jesus could actually be given "superstar" status, if you will, in the Bible.  I mean, He came to earth, born of a virgin, was the son of God and preformed miracles.  People would flock to wherever He was.  They would walk for days to hear him speak.  Yet, in the end..He was rejected by those very same people.  Truth is... when we give our hearts and lives to Jesus we WILL be rejected by the world.  That's the way it is supposed to be.  Actually, we are too, to reject the world...not reject the PEOPLE..but the world.  Jesus spoke quite plainly when asked what someone needed to do to follow Him.. He said:

Mark 8:34-35

New International Version (NIV)

The Way of the Cross

34 Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 35 For whoever wants to save their life[a] will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it."

     So I ask you again... why are we seeking notoriety.  If we are denying ourselves as Jesus said we need to do, then why are we so self centered in our pursuit of a "ministry" a "career" a ...fill in the blank?  It is scary when I take inventory of my life when this is the measuring stick I am to use.  

     Don't be confused.. I LOVE the people who are in the world.  I love them so much that I don't want to just be their friends and have them like me I want them to know that Jesus LOVES them and that He died for them.  It is cruel to "in the name of love" not share the truth of Jesus with people.  It is cruel to say "I am not going to judge"  No one said you were called to judge.  No one gave you that responsibility.. you are COPPING OUT.  Don't judge... share Jesus in Love.  

     Personally, I am daily asking God to scrub out of me anything that keeps me from this calling on my life.  Dying to self is a hard (understatement of the century) process, but I can't be filled with Jesus if there is any "self" left.  I want to be filled by Him.  I want to share more of Him with others.  I want "my" life to be fully His.  I long to have people say of me when I am gone.. She loved Jesus. 

<3 Heather

Security and all things comfy.....

Sunday, July 8, 2012

There is something about me that is inherently comfort seeking.  It starts as early as I wake up and start the death march to my coffee machine.  I seek comfort.  There is something so "wrong" about that.  More and more lately I have been aware of my selfishness and my complacency.  It is time for a change..a drastic change in my life.
I was reading in Matthew where Jesus told the first disciples to follow Him...

Matthew 4:18-22

New International Version (NIV)

18 As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. 19 “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” 20 At once they left their nets and followed him.

21 Going on from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John. They were in a boat with their father Zebedee, preparing their nets. Jesus called them, 22 and immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him.

These guys didn't even ask questions.  I would have been like "umm Jesus do you not SEE that i am fishing here..give me a second."  It seems irrational to just stop everything you are doing.. in their case.. stop their job, their livelihood, their way of life and just follow Him.  But I get it.. I have made that decision (not as easily as these guys.. truth be told it took some more convincing)  and I left all I was and was doing and followed Jesus.  Then... I just settled into a "christian" job and a "christian" way of life.  I became comfortable.  I was alright with weekly services that I would plan music for.  I was cool with everyday church as usual.  Every now and then I would get passionate about change but if it got shot down I did not fight for it.. I just accepted it and kept floating on the lazy river of my comfortable, cozy, christian life.  But God has been waking me up in a drastic way.  I don't want to be comfortable I don't want to settle for a float on a lazy river.

I also read in John 15(the message)

 1-3 "I am the Real Vine and my Father is the Farmer. He cuts off every branch of me that doesn't bear grapes. And every branch that is grape-bearing he prunes back so it will bear even more. You are already pruned back by the message I have spoken.
 4"Live in me. Make your home in me just as I do in you. In the same way that a branch can't bear grapes by itself but only by being joined to the vine, you can't bear fruit unless you are joined with me.

 5-8"I am the Vine, you are the branches. When you're joined with me and I with you, the relation intimate and organic, the harvest is sure to be abundant. Separated, you can't produce a thing. Anyone who separates from me is deadwood, gathered up and thrown on the bonfire. But if you make yourselves at home with me and my words are at home in you, you can be sure that whatever you ask will be listened to and acted upon. This is how my Father shows who he is—when you produce grapes, when you mature as my disciples.

 9-10"I've loved you the way my Father has loved me. Make yourselves at home in my love. If you keep my commands, you'll remain intimately at home in my love. That's what I've done—kept my Father's commands and made myself at home in his love.

It is clear to me that just "choosing" to follow Jesus is not enough.. you have to "live" in Jesus.  HE is the vine we are the branches...yeah, I know the kid song.  Being intertwined with Jesus, grafted in.. there is going to be pruning.  That..does NOT sound comfortable.  But it says that in order to produce fruit we have to be.   Any living vine has to be trimmed of the things that will choke out the fruit.  In my life I am seeing complacency and comfort seeking as things that are choking me...keeping me from being more fruitful.  No more.  I am done with it.

I encourage each of us to search our lives.  What are the things that are in need of being trimmed off?  Are there things in our lives that we are clinging too like a security blanket?  If so why?  What do we need to lay down?  Jesus was HARD CORE.  I don't remember reading that He ever made life easy for any of His followers.  The choices they were asked to make were not easy.  They gave up everything to follow Him and then they stayed with Him.  I don't know about you, but the choices I put the "christianeese" stamp of "is God calling me to this?" are pretty ridiculously small compared to the Disciples.  Not to make light of our life choices, just some compare and contrast.  In other countries we have people who have to make a choice that affects their life.  We have people who literally risk their lives to follow Jesus.  I want my life to be a radical one that is so much so that when people look at it they get uncomfortable.. they become aware of things that God wants to get a hold of in their life.  I want to be a life that shows Jesus' love so radically that it encourages others to do.

God, my prayer is to be with You.  I want to abide in You.  I want my life to be so overflowing with fruit that my branches are heavy.  It scares me to even ask and pray this..but I want more of You in my life.


New song Lyrics....

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Heather Williams 6/15/2012

The end is the Beginning
What you lose you will gain
There’s a hope in the destruction
Of what lies beneath the pain

Oh the pain of reconstruction
The thought of letting go
Has me turning in my stomach
And acheing in my bones

But I can’t
Hold on
And move at all

I’m letting go
I’m laying down
This rusted treasure

His glory in me
Not just filling my needs
But giving everything
To the one who knows me
One who gave it all
So I’m letting go

The wanting the desires
The burning of those fires
Bing me close to a place I don’t want to be
Oh quench this thirst inside
To be everything to my pride
Oh I’m sick of being who I want to be

Let go
Let go
I want to lose control
Let go
Let go
Of me

I want to be alive...

Monday, June 25, 2012

I sat in a great weekend service on Sunday and The pastor read briefly from Mark 5:35-43.  He spoke about Jesus raising Jairus' daughter from the dead.  The story is one I have heard and read a lot in my life but I was really struck by how clearly God spoke to my heart and wanted to share.

Jesus is a busy guy.  He is going here and there, over the lake in a boat. Where ever he goes crowds of desperate people follow Him.  Wanting Him to heal them or fix them.  In this particular story a man who is a pretty important guy, a leader at the synagogue comes to Jesus and falls at his feet, begging Him to come to his house and heal his sick daughter who is close to death.   I love the simplicity of the verse that follows this man's pleading.. it just simply says, So Jesus went with Him.  A "prayer" and "answer".  
The crowd follows them as they start off towards Jairus' house.  No doubt slowing down the journey.  I can imagine Jairus pushing people telling them to back away, my daughter is dying, Jesus needs to go with me!  Then a woman steps out of the crowd and touches Jesus.  Jesus, after asking "who touched me?" has a short conversation with the woman telling her that her "faith has made you well, go and be freed from your suffering."  Right after this amazing miracle and show of faith a servant runs up to the crowd from Jairus' house and says , don't bother Jesus anymore, your daughter is too late.  But Jesus says, "Don't be afraid, just believe."  Can you even put yourself into that moment as Jarius"  I can imagine he was feeling anguish, anger, frustration and despair.  Probably crying, asking Jesus, why did you not hurry?  I told you she was DYING!  Did you not understand me?  Were all those people in the crown more important that my daughter?  
Jesus enters the house, everyone is wailing and mourning.  He tells them the girl is not dead, she is sleeping.  They laugh at him.  They go from wailing loudly to laughing at Jesus.  Can you imagine?  Jesus puts them all outside and takes the parents and disciples into the room where the little girl lie.   then verse  41-42 tells us   He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha koum!” (which means “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”).  Immediately the girl stood up and began to walk around . At this they were completely astonished.  

I could not help but be moved by this story.  I don't know any parent who can read this and not be.  For me going through the death of a child I have my heart strings pulled a lot.  Then the thought came to me.  What is lying in the "other room" that is "dead" that I may be wailing and mourning over that Jesus can bring back to life?  What can He speak to and have rise up again?  It shook me to my core, I have to tell you.  So many things in our life we think are dead and over.  We think that there is no way anything or anyone can help or heal these situations.  For some it is relationships, marriages, addictions, anger, frustration...fill in the blank.  I read this story and realized that I may be wailing and mourning loudly something that Jesus can simply speak life to and be awakened.  I have been searching and praying a lot over the last 24 hours.  God has spoken so sweetly to me and I have begun to make a list of these things.  I am going to lay them at the feet of Jesus and ask him to speak life to them.  I trust Him.  I believe that He can and will bring them back to life again.

Take a moment, maybe more to write down things in your own life that may need Jesus to speak life to.  Pray for God to reveal them to you.  Then, lay them at the feet of Jesus and let's watch Him bring them back to life. 


Harsh but True...

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

I have already decided that this post is probably not going to be too popular but.. oh well.  Seems to me that too much emphasis is put on being "popular".  We all remember Jr. High and High School.  Some of us maybe had popularity and most of us remember being the ones chasing it like the Holy Grail.  Why?  Because it feels good to be accepted and liked and ..well.. chased like the Holy Grail.
I remember feeling like I had to make everyone like me.  I remember trying to be funny with the class clowns, Intellectual with the straight A's, Chain smoking bad girl with the burnouts, Hip Hop loving white girl...well, you get the picture.  It was exhausting.  I remember trying to figure out "who I was".  It is too cliche'.  Why do we continue this behavior into adulthood?  Well, because the need to be "liked", "accepted", chased like the Holy Grail it a tough habit to break.  We have these needs deep down that we attempted to medicate with people pleasing.  It rears it's ugly head in the most odd places.  For us moms, we try to make sure we are "super mom" and look good, play hard and let everyone know about it.  For others it can be things like, be the best student, be the worst student, be the best "local band", be the funniest person on campus, be the best local jewelry sales person, be the best dressed person at church, have the best car, have the most children, have a girl, have a boy, have a husband, be single and love it thank you very much, have a pool, have a big house, have a boat, be the king fisher, hey I play a guitar and can rock you like a hurricane.  I am tired just trying to type this all out.
Why, Heather, are you saying all of this... wait for it.  (here comes the "I am going to tick off some people and I really don't care" part)
When we give our lives to Christ we should PUT DOWN all these foolish things and strive to make HIM known, not us.  But what do we do?  We still chase after the dumbest, self chill bump giving things.  If we truly put our trust in God then why the need to be so "popular"?  Facebook is a funny little heroine needle no?  We post all this crap about our lives ... for what?  To self promote"  To make people think we have a great life?  To get sympathy when we are having a bad day?  To post really good pictures of ourselves so others can tell us how good we look?  To make sure everyone is aware of our awesome workout routine?  To make sure everyone "likes" our band page?  To make sure everyone knows our awesome ability to be smarter and write cool poetry than other people?  ....seriously?  (btw.. I am guilty on a lot of these)  
It is time that we STOP chasing the things that leave us empty.  

Let's look at John 4:1-30 (the message)

The Woman at the Well
 Jesus realized that the Pharisees were keeping count of the baptisms that he and John performed (although his disciples, not Jesus, did the actual baptizing). They had posted the score that Jesus was ahead, turning him and John into rivals in the eyes of the people. So Jesus left the Judean countryside and went back to Galilee.
 To get there, he had to pass through Samaria. He came into Sychar, a Samaritan village that bordered the field Jacob had given his son Joseph. Jacob's well was still there. Jesus, worn out by the trip, sat down at the well. It was noon.
A woman, a Samaritan, came to draw water. Jesus said, "Would you give me a drink of water?" (His disciples had gone to the village to buy food for lunch.)
The Samaritan woman, taken aback, asked, "How come you, a Jew, are asking me, a Samaritan woman, for a drink?" (Jews in those days wouldn't be caught dead talking to Samaritans.)
Jesus answered, "If you knew the generosity of God and who I am, you would be asking me for a drink, and I would give you fresh, living water."
The woman said, "Sir, you don't even have a bucket to draw with, and this well is deep. So how are you going to get this 'living water'? Are you a better man than our ancestor Jacob, who dug this well and drank from it, he and his sons and livestock, and passed it down to us?"
Jesus said, "Everyone who drinks this water will get thirsty again and again. Anyone who drinks the water I give will never thirst—not ever. The water I give will be an artesian spring within, gushing fountains of endless life."
The woman said, "Sir, give me this water so I won't ever get thirsty, won't ever have to come back to this well again!"
He said, "Go call your husband and then come back."
 "I have no husband," she said.
   "That's nicely put: 'I have no husband.' You've had five husbands, and the man you're living with now isn't even your husband. You spoke the truth there, sure enough."
"Oh, so you're a prophet! Well, tell me this: Our ancestors worshiped God at this mountain, but you Jews insist that Jerusalem is the only place for worship, right?"
 "Believe me, woman, the time is coming when you Samaritans will worship the Father neither here at this mountain nor there in Jerusalem. You worship guessing in the dark; we Jews worship in the clear light of day. God's way of salvation is made available through the Jews. But the time is coming—it has, in fact, come—when what you're called will not matter and where you go to worship will not matter.
 "It's who you are and the way you live that count before God. Your worship must engage your spirit in the pursuit of truth. That's the kind of people the Father is out looking for: those who are simply and honestly themselves before him in their worship. God is sheer being itself—Spirit. Those who worship him must do it out of their very being, their spirits, their true selves, in adoration."
The woman said, "I don't know about that. I do know that the Messiah is coming. When he arrives, we'll get the whole story."
 "I am he," said Jesus. "You don't have to wait any longer or look any further."
Just then his disciples came back. They were shocked. They couldn't believe he was talking with that kind of a woman. No one said what they were all thinking, but their faces showed it.
 The woman took the hint and left. In her confusion she left her water pot. Back in the village she told the people, "Come see a man who knew all about the things I did, who knows me inside and out. Do you think this could be the Messiah?" And they went out to see for themselves.

---What water are you trying to drink to quench your thirst?  If it is not Jesus than get ready to be thirsty a LOT.  Let's drink from the Living Water and then let's actually walk away from the other junk.  How can we expect God to move in our lives if we are not even willing to drink from Him.  
All these things we are chasing, they are going to leave us empty.  I know, Trust me.  I am not speaking from some lofty position of judgement here.. I am speaking truth because I have been that woman at the well.  I have felt the absolute dry mouth thirst and do not want that for anyone.  

My prayer this morning is for us; as believers drink deeply from the Living Water and then share that water with others who are dying of thirst.  Don't offer them a bucket of sand.  Don't settle for that.


I'll trade for some stew....

Sunday, June 3, 2012

It is amazing the deep thoughts that you can have while doing your kid Bible reading at bedtime. For me it is the story of Jacob and Esau. It is a good one to read with my two, who at times can fight like they are re-enacting said Biblical characters. As I am in the middle of Rebekah's hair applying and stew making it hits me. Esau, the older (even if just by minutes) was given a "birthright" which means he was entitled to certain privileges and blessings. He is at the time where he is about to be ready to receive this "birthright" from his father. The stage is set and Jacob (the younger brother) with his mother's help has animal hair applied to his body to fool his blind father to think he was Esau. But in order to seal the tricky deal His mom makes a Delicious stew and when Esau comes home from a long day of hunting and working he smells this stew and in a moment of weakness "sells" his "birthright" for a bowl of stew. Now, you may be saying "umm, yeah Heather I know the story... " I have a point and this is what I felt spoken to my heart.
What is your bowl of stew Heather? What is the one thing you are allowing to rob you of your "birthright?" You are offered blessings and privileges by your daddy God, but what keeps you from receiving them? Truth is we all have this "bowl of stew". We all have weak moments where we chose the stew. We smell how good it is and we are worn down and hungry and give up and eat it instead.
I am sure going to search my heart tonight and ask God to be my strength. I don't want to lose what God has for me and settle for something that seems to satisfy for the moment but will always leave me hungry later.

short but sweet tonight.


What to get mom for mothers day....

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

This morning is a hot mess of a blur to me. Could have been the alarm clock that did not go off. Could have been the dog that decided to run off. Could have been the frantic search for socks that match for the kids. Could have been the pace of a three toed sloth that my daughter decided to move at. Could have been my son's obsession with getting new shoes so he could run faster and his old ones were not good enough. It could have been any number of those things. But I think, just maybe.. it was when I saw out of the corner of my eye a tiny white sock being thrown across the room that I snapped. I DO remember the look on my sons face as I yelled and then him starting to cry and saying "Why do you have to yell." Ah, yes, I DO remember that quite clearly. It was dead silent for about 15 seconds and trying not to cry myself and slink away in shame I sunk to my knees beside him and looked him in the eyes and said I was so sorry. He hugged me and said softly, "it's ok mom. I get mad too. I love you." It was that that got me. We loaded up and drove to school.
Here we are just days before mothers day. Now I could go on a rant about it being a Hallmark card invented "holiday" but I am going to refrain from that. What I want to do is focus on our moms. We all have them. Weather we want them or not. They gave birth to us. Some of them might have only done that and then not been part of our lives. Some may have done an amazing job of raising us and we talk to them all the time and giggle and have girl talk. Some may have horrible memories of their moms that they would rather forget. Some have volatile relationships with their moms. Some may have lost their moms already and miss them terribly. Point is... we all have them and if we have children of our own then we ARE them to someone else. One thing I have learned from being a mom (besides that I am a hot head who can revert to the maturity of a 4 year old in2 seconds) is that we are not perfect. We make mistakes. Some of us admit that we make mistakes. Sometimes we hide our mistakes and try to act like we are perfect. It can be exhausting. I remember before I had children I would dread mothers day. I was given away by my mom at age 11. She was never there for me and I harboured a lot of resentment and anger towards her. I would mope and tell anyone who would listen about what a crock Mothers Day was and that I hated it. I was selfish really. You see, I was choosing to not forgive my own mother and somehow I would be able to raise children of my own someday that would forgive me. Ouch. Truth is that we are told in Matthew this (pay attention to verses 14 and 15)

Matthew 6:6-15 (The Message)

6 "Here's what I want you to do: Find a quiet, secluded place so you won't be tempted to role-play before God. Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage. The focus will shift from you to God, and you will begin to sense his grace. 7 "The world is full of so-called prayer warriors who are prayer-ignorant. They're full of formulas and programs and advice, peddling techniques for getting what you want from God. 8 Don't fall for that nonsense. This is your Father you are dealing with, and he knows better than you what you need. 9 With a God like this loving you, you can pray very simply. Like this: Our Father in heaven, Reveal who you are. 10 Set the world right; Do what's best - as above, so below. 11 Keep us alive with three square meals. 12 Keep us forgiven with you and forgiving others. 13 Keep us safe from ourselves and the Devil. You're in charge! You can do anything you want! You're ablaze in beauty! Yes. Yes. Yes. 14 "In prayer there is a connection between what God does and what you do. You can't get forgiveness from God, for instance, without also forgiving others. 15 If you refuse to do your part, you cut yourself off from God's part.

It is tough sometimes to see past our own experiences to what God is doing or Who God is. Forgiveness is an amazing gift. Not just to the person who you give it to but to yourself as well. Life is not fair. Life is hard. Life is ugly at times. But there ARE times when life is beautiful and wonderful and some of those times are when you still have the chance to have your little children be so willing to forgive you. God help me if I can't get that I need to be forgiving towards my own mother. Mom, I forgive you. I have told you that in person and want to continue to extend it to you. God is an amazing God who is able to restore and rebuild.

This Mothers Day give your mom forgiveness. Maybe your issues with her are not as severe as mine, maybe they are..either way..forgive. No promise that it will all be better or that rainbows and unicorns will appear and you will go to tea together blah blah.. but you WILL have given the same gift Christ Jesus gave to us and extends to us even in our worst offenses. Give forgiveness.

Happy Mothers Day to all you Moms out there!

Much Love,

Raising the dead...

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

I remember staring at the tiny casket and having so many conflicting emotions. One, I was trying not to snicker at the site of eight grown men shuffling what looked like a cooler to a small hole and two, trying not to cry knowing my precious son was in that “cooler” and I was never going to see his precious face again. It was without a doubt the most removed from my body experience I had ever had. My son was dead and I was left here to grieve. In life we are dealt things that leave us frozen. They leave us feeling as if we are outside of our own bodies paralyzed with grief. Death is a part of life. It is the effect of sin entering the world when Adam and Eve chose to disobey God. It is the reason Jesus Christ chose to come as a human being and die for us. It is what Jesus defeated. Yes, He defeated death. Jesus bore our sins upon himself, died and then rose again. He came back to life! Now, take a moment and contemplate that. We read it so many times in Bible studies and hear it in sermons but have you ever taken just five minutes and actually contemplated the weight of that statement? He Died and CAME BACK TO LIFE. Takes your breath away. The thought of something being dead, all life removed from the body and then life returning to what was once empty and making it LIVE. Jesus, the ultimate sacrifice rose from the dead and defeated death. Scripture tells us in Romans Chapter 8 that the same power that raised Jesus from the dead lives in us. Wow. That is amazing. The SAME power that RAISED JESUS FROM THE DEAD lives in US. I am actually sitting here dumbfounded by that statement. Then I am realizing that all that is dead in me HE has raised back from the dead. All my past sins, my old life the things that brought me pain and suffering HE has helped me allow to die and then HE has raised them from that death and made them NEW. I am NEW! It never ceases to amaze me that in the simplest of scriptures that we read over so many times He can bring to us a fresh revelation. Dear God, help me to cruicify my flesh. Help me to deny the desires of my old life. Help me to allow them to die. Continue to raise the dead in me to the new life I have in You. Amen

baby steps......

Monday, April 23, 2012

Have you ever been at a place in your life where you just had God do something incredible? There is this rush of .. well.. emotions really. You feel like you could conquer anything, like nothing is impossible. Then “it” happens…. A roadblock, a tragedy, a friend betrays you, you can not figure a way out of another issue. What happens to that “rush” you just were experiencing? Well, for most of us we panic. We start freaking out and wondering.. “Why God!? Why is this happening to me?!”
Ever feel like you are the only one who experiences this garment of emotions?
What do we do in THAT moment is critical. It is probably THE most important step we take in the journey. The one step that says, I TRUST You God.
I remember when my kids were still only crawling. They desperately wanted to be more mobile. They would pull themselves up on anything they could. They would be so excited that they were standing! They would start clapping, laughing and just full of JOY. Then “it” happens. The realization that they don’t know what to do exactly. I am a few steps away holding out my arms encouraging them to just “walk to can do it!” “Mommy’s got you..come on you can do it!” They would look at me do the “baby bounce” of “I WANT to do it.. but not really sure what to do? Can I bounce over to you?” Then after a few minutes of “trying” they would plop down and just cry. THIS is how we feel sometimes isn’t it? I can imagine our Daddy God holding out His arms just a few steps away encouraging us that “We can do it.. I got you!” And we just stand and bounce with fear and confusion.
The enemy likes us to focus on the FEAR of the situation. But GOD wants us to focus on HIM. The truth is, if our eyes are fixed on HIM, even if the storm rages we are not shaken. Isn’t that the lesson Peter learned? Oh we of little faith, myself SOO included. Today, I am fixing my eyes on Jesus, the AUTHOR and FINISHER of my faith. I am not going to be shaken by my circumstances but I will be footed in TRUTH!
Doesn’t mean that the fear is not there, it means I CHOOSE to not focus on it, but rather on Jesus!

Happy Monday everyone!

Scriptures to read today:
Hebrews 12:2
Matthew 14:22-33

Insecurity is a four letter word.....

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

I was having coffee with a friend yesterday morning and one of the questions we were discussing was .. How do you define insecurity? I answered.. Lack of worth. I have been contemplating that answer ever since.
It has been a vice of mine to pursue the approval of others. I can think back as far as my mind will allow me and pin point people I was trying to make "like" me or even "love" me. The ever out of reach love was pretty much what fueled my existence. It made me the most unlikely of optimists. A little girl abandoned and abused yet still holding out hope for the day it would stop and these people would love me. No wonder I struggle with insecurity. My worth has been tied up in the approval of others.. even others who don't like me or harm me. This blog is becoming a therapy session.. no?
When this journey began for me.. the one where I decided to lay it all out there for God to hear.. not just read my mind..but hear. It opened up a wound that I had held close for a while. It made me painfully aware of the fact that even though I KNEW that God loved me I still was living small parts of my life to "make Him love me". It is idiotic really. I mean, my head and my heart are obviously not on the same page and need to get it together...right? Total honesty and transparency are not just Church buzz words or Christian-eese to me. They are the absolute foundation to this relationship I have with God. They are the tools that are attempting daily to dig out of me this need to go after others approval and love. I have fought it. I have even tried to say it was not worth it.. but each time it digs a part out.. after the pain subsides I find myself injected with a little more worth. The kind that only takes a drop to make you stand a little taller. The worth that only my daddy God can give me. One day I will be able to stand completely. One day I will be able to look at my children's faces and not see my empty child-like self staring back at me. I will be able to fully embrace this Love and Worth. It might not be in this life.. I might have to wait until I step into eternity with God..but I am absolutely certain that no matter what God loves me.


Love the sinner .. not the sin.. oh, and if you could just pretend as if you never did sin.....

Saturday, April 14, 2012

There is a funny thing called reality. It is not the prettiest of things. It is not the funnest (is that even a word?) of things. It can be gritty. It can be smooth. It can be hideous and beautiful.. even at the same time. This reality is captured in many forms. Artists render pictures that show flaws and all.. that is, unless the artist has photo-shop and in that case if that artist knows what is good for him he or she will alter my face and body to make me look like a super model.. capiche?
We live in an age of instagram, photo booth, twit-pic etc..etc. We also can upload our "world premier" music video, diary of a mad (pick a color) person and rant. We live in a society that is on a quest for "reality"... but give it to us with our own "comfortable" slant please. Nowhere is this more evident than in some Christian circles. We like our reality sanitized.. thank you very much. I mean, we can't let little Johnny or Susie know the "real" story of our past. We have to make sure that they think Mommy and Daddy were super Christians from birth carrying on the quest of Christiandom with gusto and perfection. Well, here is the warning for anyone who is easily offended.. you MIGHT want to stop reading now and find a nice Joel Osteen blog and get on with your day. I for one am NOT in the business of trying to just add fluff to your day and make sure my sweet little stories and antic dotes make you feel better about yourself and encourage you to put on a smile and fake it til you make it. (yes, I have actually heard that preached from a pulpit before)
Why do we offer people such a small view of what God can do with a life? Is it more important to protect our reputation or appearances that we do not share with others our struggles or our past sins that God has forgiven? What is the deal? Why the shame? Now, I am not suggesting that we all sit around and just go on a sin-fest-share-a-thon and have a good ol' time.. I am saying that we can lose our effectiveness as a witness for Christ when we hide from it.
There is a room in all of our houses.. you know the one.. the one where all the crap lying around your house is shoved when you have guests coming over. Mine is the spare room.. which is exactly WHY I have a 4 bedroom house.. to have a crap room. In a panic I shove it all in there.. unfolded laundry, kids backpacks, half eaten cakes.. ok, maybe not the cakes but you get the picture. Then my guests come into my "clean" house and I get to pretend that everything is in order. I only lose my cool and panic when they happen to wander down the hall towards "the room" It is like The Tell Tale Heart and Beauty and the Beast all in one. I hear the heart beat and if they dare to touch the door knob I turn into the Beast and inside I am screaming.. "I told you never to GO in there!" Why? Because I want my guests to see the "cleaned up" version of my house.
This is just like what we do in our lives. We shove all our "crap" down and put on the "put together" mask and soldier on. All the while we are presented with people and opportunities to GENUINELY share Jesus with others and we smile through them. I for one find that God uses my "crap" as a tool to share Him with others. I can not even begin to tell you how many women I have spoken too who used to be alcoholics or sexually abused, emotionally abused, abandoned, lonely, ran from God, into drugs, anger issues etc..etc.. the list goes on. God is GLORIFIED by my admissions to these women of my past and then POINT them to the one who forgave me and is making me new every day. Oh my friends, how many broken hearts have we (not purposefully) ignored and rubbed salt into the wounds by acting as if we are perfect? How many desperate cries have we muffled by our "reality" banter and "clutter free" conversations?

The Bible is FULL of imperfect people. Daytime soaps have NOTHING on the Old Testament I tell you. Why do you suppose the inspired Word of God contains all these details? I mean, it could have been weeded out and cleaned up for us so that we wouldn't blush. But it reads, warts and all. The beauty of that is the redemption that is offered and many times given. The crucifixion would most certainly not be an event we would want our Church Lady Luncheon to be held at. The wife of Hosea would probably be a topic that we did not approach.. unless we are catching up on our gossip.
This post is getting a tad long, so I will wrap up. Here goes.

That is all.

<3 Heather

For a dear friend... words are cheap but you are not... (whispers a prayer)

Monday, April 9, 2012

Background noise
Inside my head
Trying to listen
Get distracted

Not quite sure if I am even aware
Of how I ended up right here
But I know in the process
Things became unclear

Cleaned up
Banged up
Give up
Not in that order
But most certainly
The way I’ve called out
The way I’ve tried to record it

How did it become
The little things
That outweigh the heaviness
of truth
How did the fuzzy line creep up
And steal
The sharpie pen mark

Gravel consumes my teeth
Sand overtakes my throat
Wind sweeps through my eyes
And leaves me dumb and blind
And choked

Oh to be a little girl
That looks out and sees
All the brightness of the sun
Taste the saltiness of the sea

The ache of want
Is a terrible thing
Stealing contentment
Raping peace

Sick of the mess
Tired of the retreat
Time to stand up
To lay down the knife
To pursue life
To pursue peace

Runnin' Runnin' Runnn Runnin' Runnin'....

Monday, April 2, 2012

I am at the moment crawling out from under the proverbial rock known as spring break...or should I say sleeping in for a week and now attempting to use my coffee cup as a floatation device. It is too bright out and too early to be talking much less typing. There are a few things still lingering from this last week. It seems that in the rush and craziness of life stopping and being still is very, very hard. It is almost as if we cannot survive without stress and craziness in our everyday lives. Now, I know some of us will immediately jump on our defensive, "Christian-eeze" horse and start quoting Scriptures about relying on God and He is our strength.. or too blessed to be stressed..but I say cut the crap we all fall victim to this and it really stinks.
I find that being in ministry we tend to fall victim to this even more. Why? I think it is because we assume our "job" is so "important" that it has to be full on stress and events and meetings and planning and... ugh! I for one am sick and tired of the church ministry hamster wheel of doom. The one where you run and run and seem to go nowhere but feel exhausted. Ugh! This last week has been such a sweet time of reflection and rest. It has been a time that God has shown me that my "ministry" is my life everyday and that if that "everyday life" includes stress and so much on my plate that the plate breaks then it is NOT good. I think that we all at one time or another fall victim to the "rat race".. I think it is time I am not a victim anymore. God is using all of us everyday. We should volunteer at our Church and be involved but not so much so that we lose our JOY and our FOCUS on Who and What is important.
I am trusting God today that He will continue to order my family's steps and keep us from ever being in a position of putting a "ministry" in front of GOD or our family.. yes, you CAN put "ministry" before GOD. Trust me.. I have and I am done with that.

God, You are my God and I will ever praise You!
sincerely,EX-"Christian Rat Racer"


Friday, March 30, 2012

This weekend we celebrate Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem. The people "prepared the way" by laying down palm branches and shouting Hosanna. As we enter into services this weekend begin to "prepare the way" in your hearts for Jesus to come in and reign. Start "laying down" the things that are in the way of His rule in your life. Hosanna! We love you Jesus!

Read Mark 11:1-11

Reflect on the atmosphere of celebration. May our hearts be bursting with enthusiasm and celebration of Jesus' arrival.

uncomfortable ....

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

I woke up this morning in my central AC/heating. Went to the kitchen and popped a K-cup in my Kurieg and sipped my coffee. Went to my pantry and picked from the overflow of groceries what I was going to pack in my children's lunches. I went over to my Mac notebook and checked all my social networking sites and emails. Laughed at clever status updates and lamented over sad ones. I then went and took a hot shower in my own bathroom in my rather large house. I then went to my walk in closet and picked out my clothes for the day. I check Pinterest to see what kind of outfit I want to create etc. I pick out a classic black blazer and white top and top it off with my MAC Russian red lipstick and use my Chi straightener to make my hair look "did". I then gather my children into their school uniforms to go to my new car. I start up my car and open the sunroof and tell the sync to play my morning playlist. I am cruising on a road with not a lot of traffic and I am in harmony with nature and Starbucks. It is a good day. I am feeling good. My kids are feeling good. My life is good.. no worries, no pain.. no.
I wonder. How much of God am I missing? How much of Him speaking to me am I muffling? It is a sobering thought. Today being Ash Wednesday I have been mulling over in my mind what I am to give up for the next 6 weeks and honestly a few of the things scare the crap out of me. The thought of giving them up has me in an all out panic attack. I am finding myself putting myself under the microscope, and I do not like what it shows me. A self centered, placid in suburbia soccer mom heaven in my ideal life in my ideal comfort zone. Comfort zone.. think about that phrase for a moment. Comfort-a state of ease and satisfaction of bodily wants, with freedom from pain and anxiety. Zone-any continuous tract or area that differs in some respect, or is distinguished for some purpose, from adjoining tracts or areas, or within which certain distinctive circumstances exist or are established.
So What I have done is created a continual tract of absolute self satisfaction and bow to any want I feel.
To say that this is not a picture of who I want to be is a gross understatement that is ridiculous to even type actually. Why do I create such comfort for myself? Why do I feel the need to have satisfaction surround me? What is it that I am placing in place of God? As I think about it I am convicted. No, I am disgusted. I sincerely am at a loss.
I am taking the next 6 weeks and giving up some "comfort" in my life. I know it is going to be tough. I know I am not going to like it... actually I probably will hate it and not be the nicest person to be around for the next few days, but I am praying that by denying myself some comfort I will put God back in the place He should be in my life. The place where I can literally have Him BE my comfort.

I am not telling you what you should do or how to do it, but I do know that this is a perfect opportunity during Lent to take 6 weeks and let go of some "comforts" in your life and let God be comfort for you.

In Christ,

Parking wars.....

Monday, February 20, 2012


There is nothing quite like a south Florida early evening in February. The temperature is perfect somewhere between 75 and 82. Blue skies and sun. Breeze on the water and somewhere in earshot is a live band usually playing island/reggae music. You are instantly put in relaxation mode. You find yourself walking with your flip flops in your hand and your feet in sun kissed sand. ahhhhhh...
Sounds nice.. right? Well, that was yesterday for me. I was in relaxation mode. I had had a fairly full and crazy few weeks and we decided that we would take a drive to the beach and grab some dinner. The windows are down the music is up. The kids are not fighting in the back seat. We are for all intensive purposes a happy go lucky all American Family. Then... it happens. Well, let me just back it up a bit.. I was, no joke, a picture of calm and happy. I was the car cruise director.. stating fun things we were going to do, how beautiful it was outside.. how amazing God was to create such a day... then, I am waiting for a parking space that was premium I tell you. All other spaces in the overflow lot were taken but I had spotted this perfect one two spots from the front and I am literally saying "see, we are blessed.. look at this great parking spo...."
Then IT happened. Out of nowhere from the road comes this lady in a gas guzzling monster vehicle and zips right into MY spot. I instantly begin to turn green and my jeans are splitting from the Bruce Banner like Hulk transformations that took place in a split second.. I then hear out of my mouth.. MY mouth.. the same one that was just talking about how blessed we were say something to the effect of... "oh NO she Dient!" " Did you see that?! Did you just SEE THAT?!" "she just done took MY spot" "Oh I am going to talk to HER?!" It is a rant that would make my Detroit born heritage proud. No profanity.. although I was close (just being honest..) I then go down 17 spaces to find the LAST spot in the lot and am huffing and puffing. The kids get out and we start walking towards the restaurant...right past the lady who pulled into MY spot. It is then that I hear my daughter say rather loudly...You took MY mommy's spot! Oh, I am going to talk to YOU!"
Has this ever happened to you? Have you ever been in the mindset of that everything is ok.. all is peaceful and calm, and then POW! You find yourself in a battle with your tongue? Biting it until there are teeth marks and puncture wounds? Yeah, I have. I am going to admit it.. I was embarrassed. I was ashamed that my careless words flung out in frustration were picked up by my 8n year old who then felt it necessary to fling them at a lady who took a parking spot. i mean it is kind of hilarious no? There are things in our lives that go legitimately bad and we don't even flinch but insignificant things like that we blow up about.
I talked to my kids and had to apologize for my over-reaction(yeah, you could say THAT again) and ate some real crow with my meal. This morning I prayed for God to help me more with my careless words flung in temper tantrums.

P.s. It's just a parking spot.

running...running.. running...

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

This is going to be a brutally honest Blog post today. As I sit typing this I am in conflict within myself. I am feeling a knot in my stomach and a lump in my throat. It is probably good no one is around me because I am pretty sure I am behaving like a Bi-polar hormonal chick and it might get weepy up in here.
You see, I just got back from doing some "gigs" on the road and I am at this space where I love what I do and I am extremely blessed beyond belief and wanting to be the best. I struggle with watching record sales and charts and all that stuff that either gives you an ego or makes you feel like the biggest loser ever. Right now I am struggling with feeling like the biggest loser ever. I am struggling with insecurities about who I am in this "business". I am panicked about making sure I am constantly practicing and moving forward. It is exhausting. I find myself over the last few days really struggling with these things. I am not putting all this out there for people to then comment about how great I am and all of that.. I am just wanting to be transparent. I feel the need to be. You see, I am only one of many who are doing this for a living. We can puff out our "stage chests" all we want..but we all struggle with these same issues. From the very top to the very bottom. We all have times we feel invisible, not relevant, loserish and ignored. It is not a pleasant feeling. In fact it is a very very UNpleasent feeling that I try to stuff down a lot of the time. But today.. today I am reading in 1 Corinthians chapter 9. I am reading about a race and a prize. I am reading about being free from the chains of peoples opinions and expectations. I am free because of the experience I have had with Jesus. I am free in order to then show others the change He has made in my life and share it. Free. This word, even as I type it is lifting my spirits. I mean, that is a powerful little word. 4 escape..a way out.. a way to
This is such a mind altering thing for me today and I wanted to share it. I know I am not the only one who goes through ups and downs emotionally. I know that singers are not the only people who feel these emotions. I want to let you know we are free.
I look further down at verses 24-27 and I am even more encouraged. In fact I am downright challenged by it.
"Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.


So much I could dissect here and analyze. So much meat to chew on and ponder. I mean.. if that does not take my eyes off of my emotions and point it to truth I do not know what will. I want to have the discipline to not be subject to my emotions dictating who I am. I am not any of those negative things. I am free in Christ and called to run a race, to TRAIN for that race and then run like heck towards the prize. The prize that is eternity. I am to run in a way that shows others they can run too.


Thank you God for your word. Thank you that I can come to you no matter what I am "feeling" and lay it down and trust you to speak to me. Today I thank you for allowing me to know your freedom. Allowing me to be encouraged by your word. I love you Jesus. Thank you for coming to my rescue. Thank you for never leaving me or forsaking me. Thank you for calling me and allowing me to say YES to you.


He who is and always will be....

Sunday, January 1, 2012

I was watching "Armageddon week" on the History channel 2 last night (wow does SHE know how to party on new years eve). First off, let me just clarify that it was something I stumbled on and seeing that It was almost midnight I, why not. So, there I was emerged in black holes, collapsing stars and our ozone being eaten away to leave us all to die when one of the scientists says something that I guess you could say..made me think. He said; about black holes, "you can try to do something about it.. you could shoot a thousand nuclear bombs into it..but it will not change the fact that the black hole is going to come and swallow the earth. It is just going to happen. there is no changing it." wow. sobering. I sat and contemplated the horror of knowing that something was going to destroy the earth and that we as humans would foolishly be trying in vain to alter the reality all the while it is inching towards us. And as with almost everything I read, see or hear I begin to think about it in other ways. For me I began to think about God. How he has always been God. He Is God. How He is always going to be God. That before time began He held it all in His hands and planned it all out. We try so very hard to foolishly put it together and plan our lives and our aspirations. Those of us who Know Him and have a relationship we still try to put God into these little pockets of ourselves and attempt to pass it off as "the will of God in our life". We push and struggle for admiration and approval from everyone all in the name of "Gods calling"(s) on our lives. All the while God is there continuing to BE God. Continuing to weave it all together. We take a scripture like Romans 8:28 and say that no matter.. He will make it all work out for me. Which IS true, but how humongous of a thought to think of if we were in full submission to what GOD wanted and how much MORE powerful that scripture would be and act out in our lives. It is in the perfect submission to God's will that He is able to perfectly work things together. Free will is not an excuse for the believer to do whatever we want. It is not an excuse to be loose with our lives for the sake of "fitting in" or not "reaching out" it is not an excuse. Yet even in our Christian-ese world we seem to act like it is. We twist theologies and squeeze "truth" out of our own thoughts and opinions all the while.. God is still God. He is weaving it all together. In our foolishness we scurry around like teeny tiny ants puffing our chests out and saying "look how many important things GOD has me doing!" "Look at MY ministry that GOD has me doing!" "Listen to how GOD has told me to do these GREAT things!" All the while God is still God. he is weaving it together.
These thoughts are very sobering to me. Go figure a sober thought from me on New years day. But honestly my desire truly is to have God's hand guide my life, and quite honestly more often than not I am the one with my big fat hand on the wheel. Steering and telling everyone it is God. Is it though? It is cheesastic to the core in my opinion to make a bunch of "New Years Resolutions" but I have to say, in this new year I truly want to grow more in my complete trust and submission to God's will in my life. I hope and pray that for all of us. So that He who was and is and is to come will be able to bring to fruition all He has planned.

Happiest of New Years to all of you!
Much Much Love,