Friday, May 21, 2010

Prayer for the Journey.....

New Journals in my Etsy Store!
I have a few sweet yet simple journals I added to my store this week. Each of these have been accented with a collage print and pretty ribbons and fibers and make sweet gifts of encouragement. I have been slowly working on new pieces to offer soon through my website. As new doors have opened, I have had to divide my time a little more between walking through them and creating in the studio. I am looking forward to releasing my first newsletter soon and have been enjoying the art of creating with words again as writing was such a haven for me as a young girl. So it seems my visits to my blog are a little further apart but what is being quietly woven behind the scenes has been breathing new hope and vision in my heart.

Its also a busy season as I prepare for the graduation of my son. Two years ago when my oldest son graduated I remember thinking time was likely to pass quickly and I would find myself ordering another cap and gown before I knew it and here we are already. So the days are filled with all the preparation and activities for the event. At the same time, I have begun to share my heart in a new direction by supporting a woman's and recovery ministry at a very creative local church and community center. I am so encouraged at their passion for the creative arts and am excited to see what doors open and what God has in store. I had written a prayer to share with the woman recently and hope it blesses each of you.


Lord I break open my heart and invite you to gently explore and expose my innermost being
Help me to truthfully be who I am with these woman who journey to magnify your name
Mercifully reveal and illuminate those hidden places in my heart that need Your health and healing
Let me be receptive to change and to the love, wisdom and discernment of those who care for me
Help me to remove any masks I have worn and let Your light into any darkness they have hidden
Let me move though this journey with a willingness to be real, vulnerable and transparent
Give me the courage to open new doors, risk new beginnings and trust deeper relationships
Show me what it means to create a safe place to carry the burdens of the woman in our community
Help me walk difficult roads with other brave woman and speak the truth of our collective stories
Where there is insecurity and doubts let me reveal and share my weaknesses and fears
Where past experiences have left wounds and scars let me not hide, disguise or deny them
Where there is envy and jealousy let me humble myself and reveal my heart’s struggles
When I feel the need for control help me to slow down, loosen my grip and let you guide my path
Where I need to be confronted help me to release my pride, receive wisdom and take steps of growth
When I have been hurt let me speak honestly and move towards forgiveness and reconciliation
Where there is judgment and condemnation soften my heart and forgive my blindness
In your mercy reveal and expose any hidden agenda or selfish motive in my actions or deeds
Remove any lies that have held my own heart captive and kept me from living in Your freedom
When You speak, help me discern Your voice and embrace instruction without argument, hesitation or delay
Let my words uplift, edify and speak truth, encouragement and blessing to my sisters in Christ
Help me to be an honest and nurturing place that invites the hearts of woman into the arms of Your love
Quietly weave the threads of my own story, unique gifts and passions into the tapestry of Your ministry
Bind and lovingly link me together with the precious woman who desire to serve and know You
Lord magnify my heart from the inside out so that my life may magnify Your glorious name. Amen

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Music that heals......

I wanted to share a song that has deeply touched my heart recently. I was asked to sing it at an upcoming luncheon sponsored by ARMS (Abuse Recovery Ministry and Services). This non-profit agency provides services and resources for woman who have been wounded verbally, emotionally and physically through domestic violence. The speaker will be Dr. Patrica Warford,PsyD and the title of what she will share is called "Unraveling the Secrets of Trauma Bonding". If you or someone you know is carrying scars and pain from these kinds of experiences please visit the ARMS website for more information on attending this free luncheon in Portland, OR on June 5th! May the song comfort and offer hope today for whatever challenges or struggles you may face.....

Please pause the music playing on my blog on the lower right sidebar before viewing the video!

The cruelest world
The coldest heart
The deepest wound
The endless dark
The lonely ache
The burning tears
The bitter nights
The wasted years

Life breaks and falls apart
But we know these are
Places where grace is soon to be so amazing
It may be unfulfilled
It may be unrestored
But when anything that's shattered is laid before the Lord
Just watch and see
It will not be unredeemed

For every choice that led to shame
And all the love that never came
For every vow that someone broke
And every lie that gave up hope
We live in the shadow of the fall
But the cross says these are all
Places where grace is soon to be so amazing
It may be unfulfilled
It may be unrestored
But when anything that's shattered is laid before the Lord
Just watch and see
It will not be unredeemed

Places where grace is soon to be so amazing
It may be unfulfilled
It may be unrestored
But you never know the miracle the Father has in store
Just watch and see
It will not be
Just watch and see
It will not be unredeemed

Monday, May 3, 2010

Release into the New Season......

The "new season" whispers to our hearts very, very quietly at first....and maybe only now and then. Like a breeze that you sensed just softly touched your face and you turn but can't distinquish where it came from or exactly what it was. It caught your attention though and you paused momentarily. Often the new season enters our awareness so subtly and briefly that we are apt to miss it and instead pick up our normal pace and activities again without pausing to consider the nudge.

As the new season draws nearer, we may notice an increasingly frequent breeze, stronger and more persistant than before. It becomes much harder to ignore and begins to cause us to stop and turn look around and listen, to ask questions of its source, where it came from and where it is going. It begs us to stop the direction we were headed and get truly present into our current circumstances and actually turn to face the really listen and to feel on a deeper level where it is wanting to take our body.

We can choose to fight back against it and push into the force as its pressure continues to mount and breeze turns to wind. We can fight it out of fear or insecurity, heart weariness, woundedness, pride, stubbornness, distrust or because we just don't see clearly where the direction of the wind will take us...and we want the comforts and assurances of the ground on which our feet have been safely planted. What if we imagined the breeze, if our sense was wrong...what if we appeared foolish for stopping and paying attention....for letting go...and letting our hearts be carried into the new season. Sooner or later we will discover this truth....that trying to move against the new season really does take so much more energy than turning and releasing the body to be carried by these fresh winds.

In my own life, that is how God seems to move and invite my participation. The subtle breeze released by a comment or suggestion from a praying friend, a small invitation accepted or the turning of the handle on a door slightly ajar seems to slowly build into the winds of a bold opportunity, a fork in the road with a sign that says "This way", a wide-open door or authentic relationships that speak bold truth into my life and begin to shift the trajectory of my path. God just asks that I be willing to stop my scurrying about and attempts to make my own way and sense His presence in the people and curcumstances in my life.....that I release my grip on what is preventing me from freely moving with the wind. Its really a powerful, mysterious and beautiful force.

So today I let go briefly and was carried a little further into the direction of my own new season. It was a small, simple circumstance yet held the possiblity of carrying me with great momentum. I can honestly say it was a beautifully terrifying experience filled with a good measure of hopeful discomfort! I'd highly recommend the ride. Do you sense the whisper of a fresh breeze in your own life? Are you pressing against the winds of a new season and are tired of the fight? Wont you consider falling back into the wind for a time and letting yourself be carried to the next place....into the hope and Divinely creative possibilities of your new season?