Christmas, Christmas - Oh what a glorious time!!!

i look down upon two tired hands, made of flesh and bone.
so small, and so worn.
have worked for my own gain, and washed bottomless basins
over and over...
tending to that which will not last.
building up fortresses to my own kingdom.
marred by rejecting the lowing of a Creator
clapping along to the worship of my own renown an praises.

yet in an instant, behold, the hands so spotted and matted with dirt,
are the same hands that can hold the God of the Universe
born in a humble room
swaddled in a feeding trough
21 inches or so, breathing in and out the very air He spoke into existence.

All Power and All Glory,
wrapped up in skin, that smells the same as my own.
given as the Greatest Gift,
which fits within my very arms,
His head cradled in my hands.

what Love, to come bound by time and growth,
just as we had been.
subjected to the assistance of His own creation,
to hold up His head and feed His hungered cries.

is this the King of the Ages?
not sitting high and aloft, distant,
but entering into the mess and the war of His people.
fully acquainted.

taking on the sin of humanity 24 hours at a time,
through infancy, toddlerhood all the way until He could fully sympathize.
fully know His kin.
(yes, He welcomed us into His family,
those who rejected the Kindest of all Rulers,
the Humblest of all Kings)
walking until He overcame death.

peering into a newborn's eyes,
knowing He would complete it all.
33 years of perfection. walking blameless.
his hands, growing to touch the infected,
heal the sick, and raise the very dead.

hands to wash the feet of those He called friends,
to carry His cross to a hill upon which they would be pierced -
pierced for the dirty, and the lost, and the sinful.

all GLORY ablaze within this small child.
all BEAUTY raging within a babe.

He is Worthy, to come and finish it once and for all.
hallelujah, Christ was born,
Christ died, and Christ rose again.
hallelujah, Christ shall come again.


to remember.

sit still, with eyes tied shut. breath in a moment.
chaos before and behind. whirling and twirling.
but if only for a moment, we stop. we remember.
life is more than that which fills the waking hours.

think upon that which kneads the heart into true beating.
the unison of heaven meeting earth within micro moments.
peering with the eyes of the heart, upon a God who is Holy.

it's not difficult. it's not for the intellectual or the spiritual.
it's for those who believe.

see him there, operating in human frame in absolute purity and perfection.
never missing a beat. never acting for self.
power in complete and utter righteousness.
love that protects, and promises, and cleanses.

even the dirtiest of soul, the wickedest of thought, the most selfish intent
can be washed in Him.

there is hope for pain, and crippled minds, and broken bones.
there is hope for isolation, loneliness, and failure.

sit still and peer.

He does not slumber nor sleep.
He does not turn his back even on the most frustrating of persons.
He only offers Himself.

over and over
and over again.

with fierceness and determination and fire.

the blood is ever flowing.



there are moments along our journey in life where we are confronted with truly devastating things. we watch those close and far to us suffer. ones get sick. lives are cut short. people are slaves to sin. we see it on a large scale, in war and abuse. we see it on a smaller scale with our brothers and sisters among us. why is victory seem so unattainable for some? why the landscape of deep sorrow, unescaping pain?

we cannot avoid these realities. and if we only think for but a moment we find hurt among us. within our cities. within our churches. within our very families.

lives littered with abandonment. orphans never tasting love and acceptance. abuse. evil thoughts. pornography and human trafficking in abundance. racism. abusive legalism. deep rooted rejection. they are our neighbors. our church members. even at times, ourselves.

i think it's an interesting journey to hold this pain, this tension within our hearts. to not forget. nor grow numb. but to offer them up within ourselves to the God who redeems. Yes, He redeems to the uttermost.

to live in a way that offers what we can. to preach good news. to serve others and not our own agendas. to offer what we have to the sick and the dying - both in body and spirit.

to sing the song of the cross. over and over and over and over again. to believe that is works for the fallen brother, the prideful sister, the wandering sheep. to not give up on people. to understand mercy and forgiveness work wonders.

to believe He is working it all for our good. not only ourselves, but for humanity as a whole.

save us, Oh Lord.

“Though You Slay Me” (featuring John Piper) from Desiring God on Vimeo.


He is who He is who He is.

oh to the God who is forever open. arms outstretched.

as a little girl i remember thinking your feet touched down in front of the choir and you reached past the clouds. perhaps you held the sun. but you didn't burn. your hands were old and wise - wrinkles marked out like the countries of the earth. boundary lines within the creases around the eyes.

and then they said you lived within. my heart a little home, a hobbit hole for my miniature Jesus. setting the table, and speaking to my head through an olden horn phone.

you sang me songs and i became a grade school playwright and you were my audience. awake at night, eyes intoxicated by the spinning fan and the shadows that crept through the blinds. i wrote stories, and you always applauded. you'd whisper, "this is your best work as of yet."

soon you were my champion. my hiding place. a cove off the shore, with dry walls and sea shells.

you came out from within, and down from above. you stood among my comrades and whispered truth. "this is the way. walk in it."

the closer i came, your hands seemed less ethereal and more full of flesh. blood and bone underneath fingers that had seen labor. no longer bleeding, but still a home from which it poured forth. the river that offered perfection at no cost to me.

you roared. you swirled around me.
your jaw opened and from within you came the stars.
your eyes opened and i saw, truly, the beginning and the end.

pain was dwarfed in your presence. under your shadow emotion burst within.

we smelled the same. you and i. cut from the same cloth. yet within the tension of your being the world existed. within the tension of my frame was a clambering for more.

more of you. more of myself. myself understood as it was hidden within you.

my hair blew over my eyes in the tornado of your being. i peered through to a God who was bigger, braver, and much more sure than i ever could be.

and then you whispered, "i've only just begun."

and within me there is the deepest waters.

life is a sea of very simple things. my mind is often filled with the shallowest of tasks. practicality. efficiency. even my parenting is often like a very hot summer day, with sweet little moments of spiritual awareness, though only for a moment. a quick breeze blowing through. in these small pockets i feel deeply. my son shares a childlike strain of thoughts that blows open the caverns of my soul. my toddling daughter leans her little head deep in the warm indention between my shoulder and my collar bone. my husband finds a moment between dinner and dishes to make my frazzled mind erupt in laughter.

most of the time, MOST of it - i can only swim so deep within the waters of my self before my exhausted frame must come up for air. thoughts are very survival based. get groceries in enough time to get home to their naps to make an edit to wash my hair to paint a picture with the boy to be patient and remember to call my mom.

and so we don't know how much of us is slumbering, because frankly, we don't have the time to realize. it's as if we are running a race, and the scenery and the onlookers are like a roaring blur. we cannot take them in until we cross the final line, bending down deeply under the crush of our work, and then standing up tall with hands rested upon our head - breathing... really breathing we see. we see again. we see what we did, and who we've become... who we are becoming. we see what it was worth.

i'm eager to awaken. to see. to rise above the menial (though the glory it holds is great, this we must remember). to find the pieces of me covered with the web of urgencies that never have an end. because, is there EVER an end?

they don't tell you, do they? if they did, i don't remember. that somewhere in this madness you lose parts of yourself. like an animal shedding skin because it no longer fits.

old skin goes. and you grow.

and you wake up a new person. older. wiser. less self absorbed. more resilient. beautified by one year old kisses and the strength your three year old shows when he loves. you lose fresh eyes, and gain a perpetual tiredness that offers perspective.

even that which slumbers awakens with a pristine understanding of what matters. i mean what really matters.

i'm not sure when it slows down. when it lets up. when i can bend my body down to come up for air and spin around to see it all. to really see it.

is it in the restfulness of death. or the independence they'll one day put on - to open up the space.

and in both we mourn. and in both we celebrate. laying to rest the old me. that sits and feels and thinks and creates without limitation. celebrating the death of self, that never could die until i was given babies. and when the day comes, when i breathe again - i mourn children that no longer fit onto my hip or lie next to me in my bed and ask for stories and back scratches. and i celebrate that we did it. we made it through. and the journey busted open the deepest trenches within us, so we can feel, and create with depth that was never there before.