Saturday, November 28, 2015

She Reads Truth :: Psalms of Gratitude, Day 3

Day 3 of She Reads Truth's Psalms of Gratitude has commenced! I would love for you to join me in digger deeper within Psalm 34:1-22.

This is a beautiful section of scripture packed with blessings and promises from the Lord! I am overwhelmed by His character that I have learned and been reminded of in this passage. The authors of this devotion want you to dig deeper into each gift that we are given in the specific verses below:

God’s gracious gifts to me!

verse 4:  He answers me
verse 4:  He delivers me
verse 5:  He sees me
verse 6: He hears me
verse 6: He saves me
verse 7:  He delivers me
verse 7: He protects me
verses 9-10:  He provides for me
verse 15:  He sees and hears me
verse 18:  He is near me
verse 18: He saves me
verse 20:  He protects me
verse 22:  He redeems me


Those who seek the Lord will not lack any good thing. Psalm 34:10

Because of His gracious provision, I will continue to be grateful. I am grateful for the truths found in scripture and seen to fruition in my own life. Lord, may my eyes be opened to Your blessings and provisions. May I continually turn back to You, in all things, and give thanks!

What new things are you learning about God while reading these Psalms of Gratitude? 

Friday, November 27, 2015

#FridayFive :: Five Thanks

Hello on this Black Friday! I'm going to be linking up with Mrs. Disciple for this #FridayFive--Five Thanks!

1 Chronicles 29:13, "Now, our God, we give you thanks, and praise your glorious name."
Psalm 106:1, "Praise the Lord. Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever."

If 'giving thanks' is in scripture multiple times, there must be a reason for it. I know that it isn't in our human nature to be thankful, rather it is an attitude and discipline. Hebrews 12:11 says that a discipline at the time is unpleasant; however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those that have been trained by it. I am currently in a season of training. Looking at each facet of my life and training my mind and heart to be thankful in all circumstances, as Paul learned to be content in everything. I yearn for that.

On Thanksgiving day, my husband gave me a wonderful gift--he took care of our sweet baby and allowed me to shower and get ready in quiet. While getting ready, I was reflective of what season of life we are in and why we should be thankful. I was reminded of a wonderful book that I had the opportunity to help launch this year.

In Jenny Simmons' book The Road to Becoming, she breaks down each season of life:  the dreaming/destruction, burying, lostness, waiting, and becoming. Her beautiful words bring me comfort for whatever this season of life it is that I am in, He will meet me there. I am thankful for each season of life, as I've been through each one, and I want to reflect and express my gratitude. I can see His hand in each season, and for that I am THANKFUL!

Thank Him in the Dreaming and Destruction
Life happens--both beautiful and sad. During this season, we are thankful that God is sovereign. We understand that He is in control, though it may not come easily. He paves the way. Lives are made new each day and sometimes that life is taken away. We can doubt God during this season or we can lean into His gracious arms. I've done both, and the doubting I did allowed me to draw closer to Him in time. It's how you handle the destruction that reflects your heart.

We are thankful because He is still there when all else fails.
We are thankful because He is the rock we cling when hard times come.
We are thankful because He is beside us in the midst of suffering.

Having walked through both dreaming and destruction while trying to start a family, I am so very grateful for the truth found in scripture.

Psalm 46:1, "God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble."

We thank You because, in You, we dream and find hope in the season of dreaming and destruction. We thank You for trust, strength, and desire in this season. We thank You for hearing us when we call.

Thank Him in the Burying 
Burying something is the acceptance of it being gone. The control you think you have over things is not truly in your hands. In the burying of these things, you soon realize that you should hold loosely to them. That doesn't mean that you shouldn't love well or fiercely nor should you live in fear that all will be stripped away; rather, you should live and love each day accepting that our hearts are made for things not of this earth. Our hope is in Christ alone.

We accept the grief that comes with burial. Grief allows your soul to heal. Burial brings grief and grief will eventually birth hope. We are thankful for that painful, yet magnificent, process!

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 says, "Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus."

We thank You for the season of burial, for we know that through this season You are planning greater things. Our hope is in You and You alone. We thank You for allowing burial to happen and praise You for setting eternity in the hearts of men.

Thank Him in the Lostness
When we are lost, we think that no one knows where we are. But, being lost can be a wonderful thing! We can inhabit the stillness of being lost and listen, listen to what is happening around us. Find our bearings. Be reminded of our roots.

Sometimes I feel that God uses the lostness so that we can refocus on Him. When we've become so entangled in this life, when all is stripped away, and we investigate our hearts to find what truly matters. God is at the heart of it all. Lostness strips away the busy, the plans, the next steps. Lostness strips away the noise of this life.

After having two miscarriages, I often found myself crying in the car. Arguing with the Lord. I felt as though I was wrestling the Angel of the Lord, like Jacob at the Jabbok. This is when I felt lost. I recognized that God has a better plan, but I had put my hope in getting pregnant, because that's what others had told me. 'I was young. It's ok,' trying to brush the grief under the rug. The point of the lostness was to accept the burial and destruction that had taken place after the dreaming, and to know that God is who He says He is. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. In an effort to start a family, I put all my hope in that.

Psalm 46:10a, He says, “Be still, and know that I am God..."

We thank You for FINDING us, no matter how far we've gone, You'll ALWAYS find us. We thank You for calling out to us in our lostness. We thank You for the calm and stillness in this season.

Thank Him in the Waiting
I feel as though this is the season that we have one foot in--heading out of, but still in to some degree, as we have been waiting and trusting in the Lord for some clarity over our daughter's health issues. Waiting is hard. Waiting sucks. Even still, I am continually reminded that He is good.

We thank Him because we know that He is fighting for us.
Standing beside us.
Holding our hands.
He is faithful, even in the waiting.
He is preparing the way for us.

Jenny's words hit home with my heart: "I want to finish well--and finishing well means having the patience to wait when waiting is required...Sprinting to the finish line only shortchanges dreams that need divine time to come to life."

God uses this time of waiting to refine us. To grow us. To make all things new. To make us more like Him. It is in the lostness and the waiting that we see glimpses of Heaven, glimpses of what is to become in us.

2 Corinthians 5:17 says, "Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come."

We thank You for Your comfort, protection, and peace during the season of waiting. We thank You for allowing us to wait, trust, and lean in to Your plan.

Thank Him in the Becoming
Our other foot is stepping forward into the becoming. The acceptance of this new 'normal' for our lives and we want to live it.
Live every day and be thankful for each new mercy.
Each new morning.
Each new blood cell that is produced in our daughter's sweet marrow.

We are praising Him because we know that we are blessed. We know in our hearts that we may never have an answer from the doctors, and that is ok! It does not mean that God is any less good. We can find rest in knowing that He is working in us. We rest in His goodness, His blessings, His faithfulness, His promises and His coming again.

John 10:10 says, "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full." Whatever season of life you find yourself in, may you live life to the full. Rest in His blessings.

We thank You for the becoming. We thank You for the rest we find in You and the life we HAVE IN YOU.


We are thankful for each season because it draws us closer to Him and allows us to become more like Him. I want to give thanks for each season daily, to train myself to give thanks in circumstances. Training will eventually become a habit, and a habit becomes a state of mind. Lord, train me to be thankful and grateful every single day.

What are you thankful for?

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

She Reads Truth :: Psalms of Gratitude, Day 2

In Day 2 of She Reads Truth's study Psalms of Gratitude, I am exploring Psalm 19:1-14. This Davidic psalm is written by one who has witnessed creation and scripture. When I look at creation, my busy and weary soul is calmed. Finding rest in what He has created for our pleasure. I am thankful for His goodness, His creation, and His perfection. I am continually learning to seek after Him (our Perfecter) not what the human mind conceives as perfection--I'll never be able to stack up. Because His law is perfect, I must confess my imperfections.

Who perceives my unintentional sins?

Cleanse me from _______________________.

my impatience.
my anger.
my judgement. 
my brokenness.

Moreover, keep me from _______________________.

allowing those sins to harden my heart.
normalizing, rationalizing, and justifying those sins. 
Do not let them rule over me.
Then I will be innocent and cleansed from blatant rebellion.
May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable to You, Lord, my rock and my Redeemer.

I recognize that I am broken and that makes Jesus all the more beautiful in my eyes. Thank you, Lord, for being far more than my human mind can fathom, for being bigger than my big worries and imperfections, and for seeing your Son when you see me. 

Your glory abounds, may I reflect Your glory in all I do.

Diving into Psalm 19:12-14, what are some issues you are working to surrender to the Lord?

Monday, November 23, 2015

She Reads Truth :: Psalms of Gratitude, Day 1

During this time, I am going through She Reads Truth's "Psalms of Gratitude" Study. This is my response to day 1, Psalm 100. I know...I am starting late in the study, but this is a perfect season to express thanks. I love that the activity asks you to respond to God. This is my prayer, my thanksgiving, my song of gratitude to God.

Shout triumphantly to the Lord, all the earth.
Serve the Lord with gladness;
come before Him with joyful songs.

You are the Healer! 
You restore & make all things new! 
In me, You make all things new.

Acknowledge that Yahweh is God.
He made us, and we are His —
His people, the sheep of His pasture.

We are Yours, forever Yours. 
Til the end of my days, remind me that I am Yours. 
Even when we turn, we are Yours.
We are in Your hands.

Enter His gates with thanksgiving
and His courts with praise.
Give thanks to Him and praise His name.

We praise You because we are made in Your divine image. 
Some piece of me reflects You, though I am unworthy. 
You bend down and call me Yours. 

I will praise You because each day is a blessing. 
Though they can be hard, we praise You because each day is written in Your book. 
May You be glorified by each of my days.

For Yahweh is good, and His love is eternal;
His faithfulness endures through all generations.

I know that I can write many more verses and versions of this song of thanks. My prayer is that this song would become a posture of praise, thanks, and worship to Him. 

What does your song of gratitude look like? Follow along at SRT for more Psalms of Gratitude.

Friday, November 20, 2015

#FridayFive :: Five Senses

This fall season has been wonderful! We've actually enjoyed cooler (but not cold) weather in's rare, so we are basking in the beauty of it!

I'll be joining up with Mrs. Disciple's #FridayFive again in the theme of 'Five Sense,' so I'll be discussing what my senses are up to currently!


I thoroughly enjoyed a Peppermint Mocha this morning. Peppermint and chocolate are a beautiful marriage. Having been sick for a little while, having a warm cup of coffee is a tasty treat. A smile in a cup, if you will.

Last night, we celebrated 'Friendsgiving' and it was so delicious. A Thanksgiving Potluck at its finest. We supplied the corn casserole, a personal favorite of mine! It was perfect melding of friendship and food. To say that Friendsgiving was merely enjoyable is an understatement. 'Twas a wonderful way to begin the celebration of this holiday season and it beckons me to appreciate our community, our lot in life. To reflect on this life and be grateful. I long to have that perspective continually.


I am feeling so much better after coming down with a stomach bug. That in mind, I am feeling very blessed to be back to 100%. I was once told 'the best part of being sick is feeling better.' Boy, is that true?! There's a new low in life when you hug airport porcelain. That is something I wish on no one, for it is cruel and unusual punishment.


Just this morning, I got to see my baby girl CRAWLING (forward) for the first time. In just a few days, she went from 1-2 scoots to a full on crawl. Look out, world! Here comes Harper! I cannot wait to see what she does, who she becomes, and watch her grow into her name, personality, and character. She is such a blessing to us and I don't want to miss a single thing she accomplishes, even the most mundane of things. I want to always remember the blessing that she is and those sweet blessings that she brings to us, that is my prayer.


I love the smell of fall. The cool, crisp air. The smell of cinnamon, nutmeg, rosemary, sage, and apple are a perfect concoction for the fall enthusiast. The smell accompanies some delicious apple cider and a good book, perhaps some Longhorn football on the weekends. The fall, when Texas gets to experience it for a days, is a beautiful thing.

A pungent smell I encountered recently was in New York--the subway system! As we entered and exited a subway train, my nostrils were inundated with the specific 'New York subway stench,' but though it may sound gross, I was reminded of my childhood trips to Six Flags over Texas. The rides that my brother and I would ride over and over were the Mine Train and the Runaway Mountain. The ride would smell like grinding wet metal, a very distinct smell to me, and I loved that the subway reminded me of some fun summers had with my brother.


Wow, I could go on for days about The Lone Bellow's show that we went to last Friday night. Since that concert, I can do nothing but listen to them along with Leon Bridges. My soul longs for good music. Take me back, take me back. This is a full concert from another venue a while back. I am still brought to tears when I think back to their acoustic tribute to Paris. The raw emotion that is expressed in their show is something that I have NEVER seen before. Everyone needs to experience this.

I could also hear my daughter giggle for forever, days upon days. Every single time I hear her, I am reminded of many things...I am so thankful that she can laugh at the future, for it is in God's hands. I am thankful that she can giggle and enjoy life. That she can giggle and cast her cares on the Lord. Giggle and experience the things of this life for the first time, to have that fresh perspective. To giggle and trust that her needs will be met. Being a parent has opened my eyes to the relationship we have with our Heavenly Father. It's so very humbling and I want to continue to hear her giggle and coo so I can turn to the Lord with a new perspective and appreciation.

Would you like to link up with Mrs. Disciple for her #FridayFive? Tell me about your senses!

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Thankful Thursday

It's been a while since I've done a 'Thankful Thursday' post, so here goes...

I'm thankful for good news from the doctors. God is working in our dear little one's life and we are so thankful and blessed beyond measure! We know that He has her in His hands and we treasure all the encouraging news we get.

I'm thankful for time away. New York was awesome!  I'm so thankful to have spent time away with Tyler, it was a great time. I loved seeing The Lone Bellow in concert and walking through Times Square and Central Park. New York actually has seasons and experiencing that was wonderful!

I'm thankful for FaceTime. While we were away, we got to FaceTime with Harper and it was so sweet. FaceTime is totally underutilized in our this I say 'no more!' I love that family near and far can see Harper grow and change through the technology we have.

I'm thankful for sweet giggles. Being away made me appreciate them even more. I want to make Harper laugh forever and ever because her giggle is quite possibly the sweetest sound she can make right now.

I'm thankful for Peppermint Mochas and Caramel Macchiatos. YUM! After being sick, one could enjoy a sweet pick-me-up. Both help me usher in the holiday season.

I'm thankful for GOOD Italian food. New York definitely knows how to do Italian. We were never disappointed. Cheese. Bread. Delicious Sauce. DONE.

I'm thankful for the truth in Proverbs 19:21, "Many are the plans in a man's heart, but it is the LORD'S purpose that prevails." Goodness, I need that continual reminder that His purpose prevails. Always. Forever. I'm so thankful for God's provision, in all circumstances.

I'm thankful for another book launch team endeavor, Breaking Busy. Here's a short bit from Alli Worthington's website on the book...'Sharing how society’s message of be more, do more, achieve more is keeping us from hearing God’s message to us, that doesn’t say ‘more’, but simply says ‘enough’. You are enough.'

What are you thankful for in this holiday season?

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

2015 Gift Guide for Her

Hey y'all! I'm linking up with For the Love of Dixie as she is creating a 2015 Gift Guide! I love this idea and thought it would be fun to add a few of my thoughts...

A Gift Guide for the Hiker

Puffer Vest! Keep your core warm and look fashionable while doing it.
Hiking Pants! Every hiker needs a good pair of hiking pants that wick water away, but also allow for comfort whatever the season.
Wool Socks! Goodness, these socks are amazing. I have several pair and you should too. These socks are meant to handle the terrain.
Swell Bottle! Keeps hot things HOT and cold things COLD--for a very stinking long time. Perfect for hiking.
Hiking Boots! I love my low-top hiking boots, they have saved my feet from extreme terrains and have held up well for quite a long time now. These boots were definintely made for walking.
Hydration Backpack! Keep at those extra miles without getting dehydrated.
REI Tech Shirt! Tech shirts are an amazing invention--keeping you warm while being lightweight.

A Gift Guide for the Book Lover

Coffee Mug! I love fun mugs. Books beckon a warm cup of coffee or tea.
Personal Library Kit! Who wouldn't love to create their own personal library system?! You can also check out your books to your friends and still know who has them.
Printable Bookmarks! Coloring is very relaxing, so print a bookmark and make it your very own.
Flower Pressing Bookmark Kit! I absolutely love this creative and beautiful way to make personal bookmarks.
Beautiful Throw! Snuggle up with a beautiful blanket and a fantastic book, you'll be set.
Extras: For The Love Book! There is not a woman I know that wouldn't enjoy this book. Order your copy, ASAP.

A Gift Guide for the New Mom

A Sleep Mask! This is a beautiful gift because sleep is a beautiful thing, specifically to a new mom. And it's extremely affordable, at only $6.
Dry Shampoo! Life-saver, perhaps not necessarily a Christmas gift...though it's a great stocking stuffer.
Teething Necklace! Momma's gotta look nice--might as well make it functional too.
Sweet Coffee Mug! You are a boss. Yes, you, momma. Rock it. Enjoy that coffee, too. Worth every sip.
Nail Polish! Because who doesn't love being pampered a little bit?!
Extras: A new mom would also love to have someone pay for a massage and a manicure! Perhaps a morning of being able to sleep in, if you have the luxury of gifting such an item!

These are just a few ideas of mine, what would YOU add to the gift guide?

Friday, November 13, 2015

#FridayFive :: Five Dinner Guests

I'm linking up once more with Mrs. Disciple for her #FridayFive! This week, we're discussing Five Dinner Guests.

This is RIGHT up my alley. We love hosting. I'm taking a slightly different spin on the Dinner Guests topic today...

Let's get the fire going and sit down to a warm meal and a fantastic drink. We'll have good conversation and food and dessert, of course! If the weather is right, we will fire up the grill. We don't have our cloth napkins ironed--or I may not even know where they are right now, but we're here to listen to your story and we've got paper towels. We don't have fancy china, but we have laughter and wine.

Five Things I Want Dinner Guests To Know

1. We love you.
We do. I'm sure I don't say it enough, but we love you. We love your friendship. We love your community. We love the way you love us.

2. We see you.
We want you to feel known. We see what you're dealing with. We see what life has thrown your way. We see you the way God sees you.

3. We are here for you.
Whatever you are going through, let's share a meal. A meal can be healing. A meal can be restorative. A meal can be just what you need. Just what we need. We are here for you, with whatever life brings your way.

4. We hear you.
I say this because I find myself longing to not just be listened to, but to be HEARD. There's a difference. I want you to know that you are heard. I'm not going to sit there thinking about what I will say next to contribute. I am focusing on you. Share your story. Your life. Your dealings. It's safe here.

5. We welcome you back, whenever you'd like.
Our door is open. But, please know that sometimes our house is messy and so are our lives. We love it and wouldn't have it any other way. Sometimes you walk in on the crazy. It just happens. We welcome you into our lives when we invite you over for dinner. We let you into the 'not-so-perfect' parts and our door is open for you. If you want the garage code, you just have to ask. We're vulnerable because that's what community is and does for one another. We open our door, our hearts, and our pantry to you! Enjoy.

I love having people over and I want to welcome you back.

Tell me about your Five Dinner Guests!