Shining the light of God's word into our confused world.

Month: August 2015

There is crying in God’s baseball.

Psalm 56:8

A while back I discovered a treasure trove of classic contemporary Christian music on Youtube; playlists loaded with all the artists I listened to on Christian radio when I was a kid, like Amy Grant, Michael W. Smith, Dallas Holme, and the Imperials (sheesh, I’m really showing my age with this post). I spent a few days going through these lists, basking in the nostalgia they brought.

I came across one song that I had completely forgotten about: “The Warrior is a Child,” by Twila Paris. I smiled as it played, remembering the time one of my friends in fifth grade sang it in the school talent show (I didn’t go to a Christian school, just a small rural school where Christian music was really popular among the upper elementary and junior high set). Then I got to this line:

“I dropped my sword and cried for just a while/’cause deep inside this armor the warrior is a child.”

And I had to pause the video, because that’s when it hit me:

God never tells us not to cry.

We get admonished a lot for crying in our culture. From a young age we’re told that big girls (or boys) don’t cry. Unless it’s for socially acceptable reasons like intense grief, intense joy or intense pain, crying is seen as weak–and even in those cases, it’s pretty much only allowed for women.

Parents tell us not to cry. Teachers, coaches, bosses and other authority figures, too. And then there’s that old gem, “If you don’t stop crying, I’ll give you something to really cry about.”

I heard that one a lot as a kid. Maybe you did, too.

I’m an emotional woman with a chronic hormonal imbalance. I tend to cry more often than I’d like to admit.

And I’m always ashamed. I usually hide and try to do it silently. When I can’t, I always feel the need to apologize to whoever sees me (usually my husband).

But never one time does the Bible ever tell us that we shouldn’t cry.

In fact, it does the opposite. Ecclesiastes tells us that there’s an appropriate time to cry. In Romans 12:15, the Apostle Paul tells us to weep with those who are weeping. The Lord himself is recorded as crying not just once, but twice in the gospels. We’re never told that Jesus smiled, or laughed, but twice we’re shown Him being moved to tears.

Psalm 56:8 tells us that God not only sees our tears, He saves them in a bottle and records them in His book.

It never says that we’d better have a good reason for shedding them, either.

God understands that the human condition is often hard and painful and frustrating, and sometimes we just need to get it all out of our system.

Unlike even the most loving earthly parents, our heavenly Father has the patience to allow our breakdowns and tantrums to run their course. He doesn’t admonish our fits, or try to hush us up, or threaten us to make us stop.

Instead, He stays with us, counting every tear until we’re done; and then He gathers us in His loving embrace, wipes our tears and comforts us with encouragement and peace.

Giving us the strength we need to pick our sword back up and fight another day.

That’s the kind of Father God wants to be to us, if we’ll let Him.

So don’t hide your tears, beloved. Instead, give them to God. He knows what to do with them.

In love,


PS – Here’s that video, for those who don’t know the song (or those who enjoy a good throwback):

PPS – This week I’m once again joining in at Holley Gerth’s blog for the Coffee for Your Heart weekly link-up! Be sure to stop by for more encouraging posts like this one.

When You’re Weary of Waiting


Return, O Lord! How long? And have compassion on Your servants. 14  Oh, satisfy us early with Your mercy, That we may rejoice and be glad all our days! - Ps. 90:13-14

I have a confession to make: I haven’t been having a good week.

It’s not that it’s been particularly busy or stressful or difficult. I’m not even sure what my problem is, really. I was fine when I woke up on Monday morning, but at some point during the day, discouragement settled over me and I’ve been having a hard time shaking it off.

Because sometimes it’s not that simple.

Actually, I do know what the problem was. I’d grown weary of waiting. I’ve been blogging a lot here about how the Lord has been teaching me to be patient and wait for Him to move on His timetable instead of trying to hurry Him up and make things happen. But He also made me to be a doer and a planner, and even after all this time I’m just not very good at sitting still and waiting.

Which, I suppose, is why He’s been giving me so much practice at it these last few years.

I’m getting better at it, but sometimes it’s still hard, and it makes me really tired. It’s amazing how waiting, which is essentially doing nothing, can make us so weary.

Thankfully, I’m not alone in this (and, dear reader, neither are you!). The Bible is full of people who are tired of their circumstances and weary of waiting for them to change. People with amazing faith and commitment to God. People like Moses, weary from wandering in the desert, who cried out in Psalm 90, “How long?” People like David, who wrote psalm after psalm asking God to be merciful and end his suffering when he was being hunted by King Saul. People like Hannah, the mother of the prophet Samuel, who cried bitter tears as she prayed fervently for a child, so tired of waiting for God to hear her prayers and heal her womb.

It’s not a sin to be discouraged and tired of your circumstances. It’s not a sin to grow weary of waiting.

Wallowing in these feelings, on the other hand…

I knew what I needed to do. I needed to spend some quality time with the Lord, praying and reading his word. But the last couple of days were too busy to allow much of that, and by the end of the day my mind was too worn out to think clearly, let alone pray effectively.

So this morning, after errands, I made the time. I confessed my negative feelings, spent time reading and praying through scripture, and asked God to create a renewed spirit within me. Then I asked Him again, like the persistent widow in Luke 8, for all of the things I’m getting impatient to receive, and committed again to waiting for His answers to unfold in His good time.

And I know they will. I just have to–say it with me now–be patient. Just a little while longer.

And I’m back in a place where I can do that. It’s a good place. A place of peace.

What are you being asked to wait patiently for, dear reader? Tell me in the comments how I can pray for you today.

In love,

New Beginnings

With God there are no endings, only new beginnings.

I’ve never been good at waiting. I always have to have a plan, always looking five steps ahead. I have a tendency to run ahead and do things my own way, and then pray afterwards that God will bless it.

But He’s been using this season of my life to teach me to relax, to be patient, to let go of MY plans and let HIS plans unfold on HIS timetable.

It hasn’t been easy. There’ve been times that I’ve been chomping at the bit to try and force something to happen. To take charge in hurrying God’s plans along.

Except it doesn’t work that way, and I’m finally getting the message.

But I think I’m finally starting to be allowed to move again, albeit with baby steps. Over these last few weeks I feel like God’s been planting some seeds in me, instilling new dreams and pointing me in new directions. I think this blog is part of that (by the by, how do you like the new look?).

I think I’m also being called to write my testimony about finding healing after my pregnancy losses. Not only for the losses themselves, but for all of the emotional and spiritual scars I bore–and there were a lot of them. I’ve been feeling for a while now like that’s something I’m supposed to share, but the time hasn’t felt right. But yesterday I obeyed an urge to open up a blank journal and start writing my story in it, and the words began to flow.

Today, as I stood in the kitchen making my lunch, I realized that I don’t really have a satisfying ending for my story yet. Like I said, I’m mostly still in a place of waiting. Although God has healed my brokenness and depression and put me back together whole, I don’t have a Hallmark movie ending — a successful pregnancy, a successful business, a bestselling book — something that, if my life were a novel, would provide a definitive “happy ending” and leave the reader feeling hopeful.

So I prayed, “Lord, it would sure help this book I think you’re telling me to write if I could give it a definitive ending.”

And this is the response I heard: “With Me there are no endings, only new beginnings.”


Of course, this is true. This is the God whose mercy is new every morning. Every day is a new beginning, with a clean slate. This is the same God who sent His Son to conquer death, so that even that is not an ending but merely the beginning of our next life.

Whatever He has planned for me and my husband as far as being parents goes, whether we’ll get to have a baby in our middle age, or be led to adopt, or make peace with being child-free, or something so totally unexpected it will blow our minds at God’s amazingness, it won’t be an ending to this story. It will just be the start of a new chapter.

There are other seeds I think He’s in the process of planting, but it’s too soon to talk about those just yet. Suffice to say that I’m starting to see a new vision taking shape, providing a new direction, and I’m daring to allow myself to get excited about it.

Because it is exciting, looking forward to seeing what God will do.



PS – Is God sewing any seeds in your life? Are you embarking on any new beginnings, big or small? I’d love to chat about your thoughts and experiences in the comments!

PPS – Join us for coffee and encouragement over at the Coffee For Your Heart weekly linkup at!