When God Brings it Full Circle

When I quit my job at my church in June I left a pastor and his family who I had been doing life with and ministry alongside for 7 years. They were the closest thing to what felt like family I had ever had. About a year a half ago, though, things got messy. Not messy in any scandalous sort of way just messy in the sense that feelings were hurt and relationships honestly looked liked they would end, unable to be repaired. It happens, even in the church, because we’re people and we’re sinful.

But, we pushed on. Ministry continued but relationships were drastically different. It was a lot of work and not a lot of personal. Eventually that got to me because it led to me forgetting that I was working with people and also to not feeling treated like a person. I did a pretty good job, though, of suppressing all of that “for the good of the ministry.” Not  until after I left my job at the church did I realize just how much hurt and honestly bitterness I had built up.

I am glad I didn’t realize it until after I left, though, because it allowed me to leave well. I didn’t leave because of the negative things that had happened, I left because God said it was time to go. Since then, God has healed my heart and helped me to truly forgive.

It’s really cool to look back now and see God’s hand in all of it. Had those relationships not changed, I’m not sure I would have been willing to let them go and leave when God said it was time. He detached me and uninvested me because He knew I’d need that in order to follow His calling me away.

It’s also amazing to see how He has brought it full circle and redeemed and restored friendships. It took time…a lot of time and I’ve just been processing it all recently, but God has proven Himself faithful…as always. I am incredibly blessed to still have a friendship with people who have seen me at my best but more importantly at my worst.

My encouragement to you? Fight for the relationships, despite how awkward or uncomfortable or hard it may be, because they are worth it. But also be encouraged when things don’t go well, feelings are hurt, you feel “wronged,” or you don’t handle a situation well, that God is greater than all of it and He will redeem it.

From a Tweet to a Prayer to a Friendship

I love all of my friends. And I am blessed and humbled to know each and every one of them. But there are some people in my life I so greatly respect that the fact I can call them a friend humbles me beyond words.

Michael Buckingham (@holycowcreative) is one of those people. And the story of our friendship truly is from a tweet to a prayer to a friendship. And it’s a God story that deserves to be told so He can get the credit! This past March Michael sent out a tweet with a link to a prayer form on his website. I don’t know what compelled me to fill it out and submit it or to be honest in doing so because I just don’t do that sort of thing, but I did. Michael followed up not long after with an email and from those conversations a friendship began. Really, it’s more of a mentorship because I have more to learn from that guy than there is probably time for in this life!

In a world where online can lack authenticity and people’s offline selves can be the opposite of their online, I’m blessed to know people like Michael who break the norm. I’ve only met a handful of people who are extremely passionate about what they do but also always true to their heart for people. And even fewer who walk that out with humility. Michael is one of those people and it’s an honor to know him.

And you know the really great part? Michael wants to pray for you too! Check out his site here and share as much or as little as you’d like.

Throwback Sundays…Life is Calling. How Far Will You Go?

I wrote this post back in April. I was in the middle of wrestling with God about what He had for me next. Was I supposed to stay in Appleton at The CORE or go? I think deep down I knew from the beginning the answer was go….I was just to afraid to acknowledge it.

Risk was a recurring theme in my life then and it has been again lately. I feel God saying, “I’m calling. How far will you go?” I’ve said to several of my friends lately that I feel like I’m on the brink of something…like I’m standing at the door of the plane getting ready…just waiting to jump. And it’s equally exciting and frightening at the same time. One of those friends said to me the other day, “God called you to go skydiving. Nashville is just the airplane…in leaving Appleton you weren’t jumping, just getting in the plane. You still have yet to jump out. Just remember that.” I won’t lie…that scares me!

But, when I remember that it’s God saying “How far will you go?” I remember that complete surrender is His call. And that means fear and hesitation too. I don’t know what that looks like in my life in the months ahead, but I’m going to try to be excited to find out :)

You can check out the rest of the original post here. What’s been the biggest risk in your life recently?

Photo Fridays…Nostalgia

I’m secretly nostalgic at heart. But, Christmas is the one time of year I’m willing to openly admit it…unashamedly :) So, in honor of that it’s a little Christmas nostalgia for Photo Fridays this week.

What’s your favorite Christmas tradition? The one you will without a doubt pass along to your kids someday? The one that you miss when it doesn’t happen? My favorite is the 11:00 p.m. Christmas Eve service at my grandparents church…the one I attended till 3rd grade. It’s the one time of year I love the choir and the handbell choir…yes, handbells! And even the organ. My family gets together on Christmas Eve so we would always do our children’s service, go home to eat and open gifts, and then go back for the Candlelight service at 11:00 p.m. And for many years it’s been the one time a year my dad would go to church. It’s honestly the one thing I’ve missed about working at a different church the last 5 years or so and the one thing I’m really looking forward to this year even though part of me wishes I would be here in Nashville worshipping with my new church family.

Your turn, enjoy the photos and then share your favorite Christmas tradition!

Nostalgia is a file that removes the rough edges from the good old days.  – Doug Larson




A Prayer to Remind Us It’s so Much Bigger

I found this poem over on Skye Jethani’s blog recently and thought it was way too powerful not to share.

(This prayer is attributed to Oscar Romero, archbishop of El Salvador. He was assassinated in 1980 while saying the mass in San Salvador.)

It helps, now and then, to step back and take a long view.

The kingdom is not only beyond our efforts,
it is even beyond our vision.

We accomplish in our lifetime only a tiny fraction
of the magnificent enterprise that is God’s work.
Nothing we do is complete, which is a way of saying
that the kingdom always lies beyond us.
No statement says all that could be said.
No prayer fully expresses our faith.
No confession brings perfection.
No pastoral visit brings wholeness.
No program accomplishes the church’s mission.
No set of goals and objectives includes everything.

This is what we are about.
We plant the seeds that one day will grow.
We water seeds already planted,
knowing that they hold future promise.

We lay foundations that will need further development.
We provide yeast that produces far beyond our capabilities.

We cannot do everything, and there is a sense of liberation
in realizing that. This enables us to do something,
and to do it very well. It may be incomplete,
but it is a beginning, a step along the way,
an opportunity for the Lord’s grace to enter and do the rest.

We may never see the end results, but that is the difference
between the master builder and the worker.

We are workers, not master builders; ministers, not messiahs.
We are prophets of a future not our own.

I don’t know about you but sometimes I just need to stop, take a step back, and remind myself that it’s so much bigger than me. It’s so much bigger than anything I have done or will do…haven’t done or won’t do. I am just a very small piece of His puzzle. Nothing like a healthy dose of perspective :)

A Few Good Things

Thought I’d share a couple of things I’ve found recently that inspire me or that I simply think look really cool :)


This one comes from a new blog I’ve discovered…Sulu.





Last but not least, this video is pure goodness! :)

Helvetica In Motion from Positive Pictures on Vimeo.