Tag Archives: widow bible

Luke 7-10: …Don’t Miss The Moment!

Luke 7-10 

This last 2 weeks have just been full of STUFF. Kid #2 has a broken ankle. Docs appts all over. Shots and physicals and therapy appointments for all 3 kiddos. Errands, house guests, house “stuff” …stubborn drains, laundry mountains and teenage stench cleansing. Family plans, vacation prepping, parties and parental chauffeuring.  Weight loss “plans” and a gym schedule that I think is really only keeping me sane, not necessarily fit. And on top of that I’m writing, promoting and launching a blog and my first business…all RIGHT now.

But this is mom life. Nothing atypical or out of the norm to be exhausted, working overtime, barely remembering to eat, (and somehow staying the ever irritating 10 lbs over my goal weight). Nonetheless in my usual rush to get my scheduled items done on time, I found myself reading my bible passage – and got NOTHING. Zero. It was completely eluding me what in the world this part of Luke, the travels and miracles of Jesus, was supposed to mean to me. I found myself rereading, trying to create meaning from my own situations, and in short coming up with nothing i felt good about.

I kept  thinking “I need to make sure other widows get something from this..I need to make it relevant…it needs to be interesting yet informative… I have to stick to my schedule… what about the 50 million other things on the schedule… ooh look – a squirrel! — and my head literally popped off. OK it didn’t. 🙂 But I did have to just take a break. Tried a different book. The devotional I normally get great insight from, wanted me to focus on the story Mary and Martha. Jesus visited them and Martha ran around like a crazy person (a.k.a. normal mom) trying to cook, prep, and be hospitable for Jesus…because I mean… he’s Jesus!! I get it!! And her little sister, was sitting at the foot of Jesus, just listening. Not helping. Not moving a muscle to even try to make things presentable for their honored guest. And when Martha finally had enough and said to Jesus, hey – make her help! Lazy self! He shut poor her down, saying that she was the one in the wrong place at the moment…and that Mary was right where she was supposed to be!

I got what the devotional was hinting at. Busy is not always the blessing. Sometimes the blessing is the moment – not the work it took to prep, create, or deserve the moment.  Sometimes what you prayed for is right in front of you but you miss it, trying to make it perfect or perform the duties expected with it. And in this was a good lesson… but I still felt like wanted a little more from this. I decided to take the book’s advice and try being still, like Mary, to see what I was really meant to get from this. 

I walked outside and just stood with my eyes closed. Probably looked like a nut, but I tried to only be mildly affected by that. I felt the wind caress my arms. Heard the trees swish in the evening breeze. I just waited. Since we know meditation takes practice and I’m no guru… silence in my head was not happening. But among the buzz of others…one thought did occur to me. I have another book! My mom had gifted me another book by John C. Maxwell called Wisdom from Women In the Bible a few weeks ago. I went back inside to find it.

I opened it and, would you believe the first page I opened to was Martha and Mary?? I’m no longer as surprised by God’s intentional “coincidences ” in my life, as I am humbled that he’s ever even taking the time to be bothered with tiny me. I digress, I read something a bit different here, and 3 lessons I got from this do correspond with the devotional message…but they had a slightly deeper and more personal meaning worded this way.


1. Be Still and Let God Lead

There was a point in the book made about moments when “God is in the house” to just sit at his feet and let him lead. This was tricky for me to decipher at first but it came to me later in bed that night.  For me, God is “in the house” when I’m doing the work I know He set for me. Not when I’m creating the website, planning events, looking for bookings and stressing like a headless chicken over everything – But when I’m on the phone with that widow and there’s that moment of “I totally get you!” and I start unknowingly validating her prayers. When I know I’m being used and the words are not my own, they are just spilling forth and she’s Amen-ing and the vibe is just gold light and fire!! That’s when God is in the house. That’s when I need to just throw away my talking points and just get IN that moment and let God lead! I prayed and prepped for these moments so that they could lead to a blessing – but the blessing is HERE in the moment! So I say that to you: The blessing IS the moment – not the prep or just the takeaway. Rejoice before and after yes- but don’t forget to stop prepping and stressing – just pause and BE PRESENT and let Him work in the moment, when God is HERE. Slow down and Enjoy the moment!


2. Moments Expire!!

Another thing about fleeting precious moments, is that they reside not only in times where God “is in the house” but in life!  Truly loving people lies in the moments with the people, not their corresponding “to do” lists: Jesus said to a disciple — who had also fussed at Mary for wasting perfumed oil, which could have been sold for money for charity, not used to clean feet — that poor people are always going to exist. He would not  always be here for her to show her love to. This resonated with me because in taking great care to feed, clothe, transport, and care for my children… I’m in danger of missing the moments I cannot get back.  Sure, some things need to be done to ensure my little human blessings reach adulthood and independence…but the blessing of seeing, cherishing, and spending time just enjoying the moments with them while they are children… will be gone one day when they are independent adults. Moments Expire!!


3. Busy Women, Natural Givers

And lastly there was the message about being a woman and our natural gift of doing-everything-ness. We don’t all scrub and bake til dawn to show love, but most of us seem to have something in us that we selflessly give. Time, Money, Energy, Wisdom, Help, Affection, etc…we tend to give and give with no regard for ourselves until we begin running almost empty. And that empty feeling feels like lack of appreciation.  And the human parts of us start looking for folks to blame or compare our efforts to. (Ahem, Mary’s lazy buns) lol. Mary definitely wasn’t being lazy but Martha was giving Jesus what she thought was 100% of her best! It must have stung a bit when Jesus pointed out that Mary was doing the right thing and that Martha was pouring her own efforts into the wrong pot. This is where I discovered that in that same moment, she probably realized she wasn’t mad at Mary at all. She was upset with herself. She was running in circles, so busy being busy- she’d missed the point of Jesus’ visit. It was to be with him. To learn from him. Jesus had not come to take anything she had prepped, cooked or cleaned. He had come to give her something.  But her hands, were full. Sometimes as women we give so much, we forget that we have needs too. We forget that life has gifts and knowledge and love to give US…but our hands are too full to receive. Our hearts are too weary to hope there’s something for us too. We didn’t even look for it! Our minds are too busy creating reasons for why we need to do more, (or explanations for why others aren’t) that we don’t think there’s time to stop and receive.  We miss it completely! Stop missing it! Get what God came to give you! Slow down sometimes, and see if God is in the house – and if he is: put everything else aside. It will be there when you get back – that moment might not be! Stop and get your moment! He’s here for YOU.

Whew!! It is MONDAY ya’ll. That took me 4 days to unpack! 4 days to really receive the full message…and even though I’m a bit off my schedule, I’m glad I took time to wait for each point. I’m a very busy person – as most of us mothers are- but this lesson helped me slow down, and really dissect that moment Martha had with Jesus. I’m grateful for the wisdom that came with it! <3

Meditation:
Thank you Jesus for giving me so many things to appreciate! Help me trust you more, enough to know that your intention is more important than my to-do list – and help me see the moments you create for me! As hard as I try to give so much of myself, showing my own way of love – help me to remember you have gifts for me too, and that I am important to YOU. Whether its wisdom, love, people, or whatever gifts you have for me to stop and appreciate- help me see that I need to slow down and give my 100% attention to them when you present them – and not miss the moment!! Amen.

Luke 6: Solid As A Rock

I read Luke 3-6 but the most value I got was from the last verses of 6. Jesus talks about exactly how he wants us to be. Specifically actually. He talks about blessings and woes (6:17), love for enemies (6:27) judging others (6:37), handling your heart and it’s true fruit (6:43) and then about the foundation of your faith (6:46). All this sounds really good, like all things in the bible that Jesus says; clever, wise, repetitive so you don’t forget and purposefully worded to paint a picture in your head.

It wasn’t, though, until I read a devotional in reference to the last part of chapter 6 – about the foundation of the spirit and using what Jesus teaches in times of storm – that I realized WHY he was saying these things. The devotional asked me three questions:

  1. What storm is threatening to sway you?
  2. How deep is your foundation in Jesus? How much deeper would you like it to go?
  3. What will you do to develop a deeper, stronger foundation?

Reflexively, over the years of widowhood, I tend to think of my storm as.. well… widowhood. And everything that came with it. But as I stated in the last chapter of John – I really do feel that that particular storm is finished. Thing is – what scares me is the old saying, “the only thing constant is change”. I’m sure there are more changes, more storms to come. I’ve had some over the years, unrelated to, but still complicated further by widowhood. My life has been “no crystal stair” to climb upward – still I have to acknowledge that upward is indeed the direction I’ve been climbing. I’m no longer shouting in the deafening storms of grief and depression. I’m no longer fumbling in the dark with the problems of those storm clouds. My life is pretty amazing. As awesome as that feels to say – I think the threat of new storms and how that fear affects me – THAT’S the storm I’m battling now. Call it PTSD, if you will. I’m better than I was, and I’ve healed my own way by making sure I’d always be mentally prepared to rebuild from whatever comes next – but I’m still very aware and fearful of the possibility of new pain, new setbacks and God forbid – new grief.

Interestingly the main things a single mother has to worry about like money, future planning, grief counseling, single parenting, new relationships,  running a household, and stress management – these are what I help other people build stronger, smarter foundations for. These are balanced and managed in my life, thank God – and I’ve (literally) made it my business to create systems to help myself and others keep these foundations intact and their lives less stressful.

My storm has to do with worrying about the things I CAN’T control. It threatens to sway me every time. My imagination gets the better of me and I’ve come up with 800 scenarios of death and chaos, casting looming gray shadows over the things I CAN’T organize, manage, counsel away, or plan for in this wonderful new life I’ve created. It’s the main reason I started reading this bible. In the beginning of the journey I said – I wanted a deeper foundation. I’d want it to go so deep I don’t even bat an eye at storms like this. So what will I do to develop this? The devotional says this:

“We know that sooner or later storms will come in one form or another. If we don’t put Jesus’ words into practice, we are on shaky ground. But if we build our spiritual lives on what he says, we can withstand anything that shakes us. And what strong words has Jesus given his followers?

New Women’s Devotional Bible NIV – Zondervan 2010

Yep. You guessed it. Scroll up. 🙂 First paragraph. “He talks about blessings and woes (6:17), love for enemies (6:27) judging others (6:37), handling your heart and it’s true fruit (6:43) and then about the foundation of your faith (6:46).”

I don’t have the answers as to exactly how these will specifically help me in the future of storms, because like most people, I bet, I can imagine a million possible storms, but can never predict or prepare for the one that actually comes. I will say, it’s probably better to have Jesus in your arsenal than nothing at all.

Meditation: I know I can’t control everything, and storms will come whether I’m worried or not,  weak or strong, tired or ready. In which case, my worrying is pointless. My strength is in my obedience to keep reading the Word. My readiness is my ability to use the armor of the Word.

I’ll trust in the Lord, and keep building my foundation on his Word. He will be my rock, my solid foundation.

Luke 1-2: Never In Their Wildest Dreams

This week I started Luke. I’ve always liked that name, so when I saw that the next “recommended book to read after John” were Mathew, Luke and Mark – I picked Luke. Cover Art Painting: The Amazing Minjae Lee.

The chapter starts off with the births of both John and Jesus, and how Elizabeth and Mary (their mothers, respectively) were cousins. Something interesting about them that I picked up on, was that neither of these women were “supposed” to be pregnant. Elizabeth was very old, and told she was barren. Mary was a virgin that was only engaged, not yet married to her fiance Joseph. It’s interesting to me because it seems like God likes to be “unpredictable”. In Elizabeth’s case, she was old – and had ‘lived her life’, and probably wished for younger days and babies along those long years. Even though Elizabeth was said to be filled with the holy spirit, and a good woman, she was still barren. Back in those days, infertility was seen as a bad omen, or being unfavorable to God. Shame was attached to infertility, and she lived most of her life with that shame. She probably thought her l ife was almost over, and that there would be nothing “new” or exciting to look forward to, because the things she really wanted were no longer possible. Never in her wildest dreams had she even considered that she might become pregnant and raise a brand new baby at this age!

In Mary’s case she was probably pretty young and had no idea what being married would be like. She might have daydreamed and pictured her life as a wife, an the “duties” of creating eventual children, but it’s doubtful she imagined immaculate conception – and having to explain that to her friends and family! What a crazy impossible shock that must have been to her life – being chosen to mother the son of God! And what about the rest of the situation? How strange things might be between her and her husband after breaking the news, or not knowing how that dynamic was going to play out with Joe not being her child’s biological father, and how that might make him feel for the rest of Jesus’ life. How would Joseph feel when his son walked the earth talking about his father – and never mentioning the man in the shadows that raised him?  It must have seemed incredibly impossible, the whole idea of it all. Not in her wildest dreams was this even a “thing”.

Bringing this back to me, and my perspective as a widow, its pretty obvious that no one would ever even think of their spouse passing away – especially not the way mine did. I’ve heard so many stories of how crazy, unexpected, downright impossible things have happened to claim the lives of spouses, young and old, healthy or not. But the kicker here is that I thought my surprise was his death. While it was a HUGELY unexpected and life changing blow, that wasn’t even the part that I would have never imagined. THAT part happened as a result of his passing. I never had any aspirations of being a speaker, inspirational leader, teacher, coach, or creator of anything like what I’m doing now. I never had any idea I’d be able to be sitting here, on my deck on a Thursday, writing – living the life I created around a passion that didn’t exist until he passed!! I feel like I’m a completely different person after Jason passed. That woman didn’t believe she could lead, teach, love again, inspire or be anything more than what she was. That woman didn’t have the faith, the wisdom, the self confidence, the motivation, the trust in others, or the energy to pour into others and relish in stretching people’s imaginations to see their own potentials. Never in my wildest dreams did I think THIS would be my life. Not when I dreamed as a kid, not when I met him and knew he’d be my husband, and not at the altar when we’d said “forever”. I’d never imagined THIS.

I wonder if Elizabeth and Mary were changed souls as well, after such a turn happened in their lives. They sang songs of joy and worship, knowing that their God was real and He had made them special. He had changed their lives. And yes, Mary would have to witness Jesus die. And yes Elizabeth though blameless, had to live most of her life with the shame of thinking herself broken, people whispering behind her back that she was unable to perform the one thing she was “supposed” to provide. There was tragedy attached to His plan. But there was also joy, and life and amazing grace – beyond their wildest dreams.

Meditation:

Nothing is impossible for God” (Luke 1:37).  Think about the things in your life you have experienced that were just beyond anything you could have imagined – and then what was the result? What changes have changed YOU – or your life – beyond anything you could have predicted?

End Of John: It Is Finished.

Of the last sayings of Christ on the cross, none is more important or more poignant than, “It is finished.” Found only in the Gospel of John, the Greek word translated “it is finished” is tetelestai, an accounting term that means “paid in full.”


https://www.gotquestions.org/it-is-finished.html

Today is 10 years. 10 years since Jason passed away. Yesterday I was reading the end of the book of John… and the passage that stuck out to me most was “It Is Finished”. The Last words of Jesus before he died. Not at all comparing myself or my journey to Jesus’. It just led me to think more about what really transpired here – not just the passing of my husband, which was traumatic in itself- but more the turning point in my life. The moment that changed my life. That moment has come full circle. And its moving me to the next moments. This moment – this feeling that I’ve completed my first 10 year lap as a widow, its something I just wanted to take a moment and expand on.

July 26 2003

It’s more emotional than I’d expected! I guess life is just funny that way. I remember everything from that day. And I remember the following days, feeling numb and hopeless, praying for THIS time in my life to “hurry up and come”. Praying to be “over it”. For the pain to stop. For my “comeback”. For my happiness- if there was going to be such a thing, to just hurry UP!

Thankfully… it DIDN’T. It took its time. It made me LIVE, CRY, SCREAM, SHARE, LOVE, and PUSH thru all 10 of those years so that I could HEAL properly.

In those years it took to get here, I became MORE than just a widow. In my years of single parenthood I became an Author, a Speaker, Home Owner, a Landlord, and Entrepreneur, Life Coach, Happiness Engineer lol… that last one I gave myself. I’m in a wonderful place right now of new beginnings, joy and growth in my life!!
But there is a touch of bittersweet-ness. Because there is a part of me that even though it was not always the BEST part of this journey – it is still a part of what makes me who I am now.

“… even though it was not always the BEST part of this journey – it is still a part of what makes me who I am now. “

That part was Hopelessness. Its gone now. It is finished. It made me sad. Took my control. Drove me to anger. Anger and frustration enough to say, ENOUGH. It pushed me. Mocked my usually cheerful disposition. Exhausted me. Reminded me I had no were else to go but FORWARD. And so forward I went. And I found SO much on the other side. I am so grateful hopelessness is gone – but so grateful it made me who I am today.

Danny, our new baby Aria, and the boys 🙂


I have more growing and sharing and crying etc. to do!! I have more to give!! My journey is still ongoing!! But the hopelessness part – the part where I didn’t know how to “bounceback” from life’s body slams — It is finished. And I am thankful. Shot out to my partner, my Next chapter, my love, and my best friend for loving my crazy tail, and being there no matter what. Love you. Danny Hunter

RIP Jason Tyler I pray you are celebrating up there – your 10 year Heaven-iversary. <3We miss you and love you. But we’re OK. <3 <3

John 14 – My Assignment? What MORE Could God Want From Me?

Among many other tasks, Jesus’ main assignment was to be “the way” to bring people to God for man. Along with his goodness, his teachings, his struggles with a world who mocked him, his miracles on earth, and his unwavering faith – he was STILL literally going to have to go through Hell and high water to fulfill His purpose.

What is YOUR Assignment? My assignment?!? What MORE is there for me to endure, God? I get it. I understand the overwhelm. I get the fear, the PTSD of it all. Like maybe a fear of what MORE pain or struggle your future could hold. Or maybe the feelings of skepticism when you think about a God that would ask you to carry on through this pain and suffering- and then STILL carry out some mission– after all this? It’s a lot to consider. That God is not done with you YET. That your service to Him, your faithfulness, and the ups and downs of your life BEFORE your spouse passed, feel in all in vain now- now that you’ve been asked to do THIS too. Kinda scary, to be honest. To know that God, even through the hardest trial of your life so far – is STILL not done with you.

And our assignments don’t have labels on them, to warn us in advance which ones are the HUGE life changing ones and which ones are small and stay small. We really only see in hindsight – if we ever see at all – what ripple effect God intended our assignment to create in his grandiose plan. Being a widow, I thought, was going to be my biggest, most insurmountable assignment. Only in hindsight did I see that losing my husband was actually not the hardest part of this assignment – and it was HARD. But raising children in his absence, having to keep alive the memory and details of Jason, which broke my heart to have to do on command— for young children that didn’t remember and NEEDED HIM SO MUCH —THAT was my hardest battle. My assignment was to make the difference in these kids’ lives. To be the bridge between them and their departed father. To make sure THEY didn’t break or grow up broken. And guess what – I did. Still am. It worked out. Still is. All for our good. I became better – for THEM. They are strong, intelligent, and beautiful now! I would have NEVER imagined things would have bent and twisted and cleared from our paths to create such a fortunate and positive future. I would have never believed my pain had such a worthy cause. I was afraid. But it turned out alright. My sons clearly have important assignments as well- the world needs them. And the ripple that created their futures, started with my assignment.

Of course I have other assignments, as I’m sure widowhood has given you all as well. I guess my message here is to help you realize that no matter how crazy, unsuccessful, overwhelming, or even insignificant your assignment might sound – Don’t give up. Don’t be afraid! Do it scared if you have to! God has plans for all of us, and as ‘cliche’ as that sounds, ALL of our missions are immensely important. It is ALL for our good!! The success of the mission; size, scope, and impact – are HIS responsibility. Our job is simply to be obedient and carry them out.

Meditation: Where has widowhood brought you? Do you see a mission in this new identity? Is there someone who you might follow your example, be comforted by your empathy, or motivated by your perseverance? God does not deal in coincidences. Jesus said that not even a sparrow falls to the ground without our Father’s notice (Matthew 10:29) You are where you are – on purpose.  Think about what is going on in your life now, and where you may be being called upon – your specific circumstance and position –  to serve in His Divine Plan. Don’t give up. THIS- as unbelievable as it might sound – is all for your good. You gon be aight!

Matthew 10:29

Keep Going,

xo

John 10 – Widow Walkin’ Into Higher Purpose : Servant Leadership

As I read of the miracles Jesus performed, in John’s account, I see there’s a pattern. Jesus puts emphasis at the very end, before he dies, on being a “servant leader” and gives his disciples the task of loving each other as He loved them. The devotional portion after the chapters goes on to talk about the meaning of servant leader and how Jesus implicated this in his teachings. The questions after  ask me – How have I been called to be a servant leader? The “servant” part is pretty easy for me; I know I’ve been called to help other widows. I understood what I’m doing and building wasn’t going to be easy. I knew there would be long working hours, a ton of writing, and a lot of time in front of people, being an example, and being way outside my comfort zone. I knew I’d have to spend a lot of time and energy in mental spaces and among emotions I’d purposely removed myself from, to help others find their way out, too. This all still, sounded better to me, than working a 9-5 job building something I didn’t care about. Wasting my life on someone else’s dream, collecting a check to pay for a home I’m never in. Starting my own business doing what I love –  I jump out of bed everyday with the conviction that I’m doing what I supposed to be doing; learning new things, helping people, using talents I’ve always had, for a purpose I was given.

What I didn’t expect was the leadership portion. I’ve never wanted to be a “leader”, per se. I’ve always steered clear! Being a leader at work was the LAST thing I wanted – because of what I expect of a leader.  When I meet GOOD leaders I respect them deeply, because GOOD ones are hard to come by. A good leader knows EVERYONE’s job, and can do it at moments notice, just in case they need to. A leader plans the beginning, middle and end steps of the whole project – and makes contingency plans just in case. A leader knows they don’t know all the answers – but knows exactly where to find them and how to say so without fumbling or seeming incapable. A leader is responsible for being an effective communicator, speaking clearly and expertly so that the team knows exactly what is expected of them and is able to perform without issue. A leader makes the team feel as if each person has equal importance in their roles. A leader motivates others with her own real life experiences, empathizes using the golden rule, and energizes with the idea that anything is possible if a positive “we” attitude is applied.

That’s a BIG role to fill. Bigger than being queen of IG, bigger than being an awesome blogger, and bigger than having followers in a facebook group. Bigger than playing small, staying safe inside my own sandbox. And I will admit – that scares me. But.. in the same token I feel like I’ve always known this role would be required of me. The fact that I even know what it takes, ( from having some not-so-good leaders as well as excellent examples) makes me suspect I might have this knowledge for a reason. I know I could be a great leader. I just know its a LOT of work!

Being a widow forced me to take point in my own home, and in ways I didn’t even realize my husband was leading – I had to l learn to fill in. I had take over, and do well in order to lead my children in the right direction going forward, and earn their respect and obedience performing both parental roles. My own mother, devoted her life to education and really helping people (and she’s one of those “in the trenches”, whatever-it-takes, I’m-not-gonna-let-you-fail type of leader)  – and because of her I know exactly what “servant leader” means, all that it entails, and how to employ it. I’ve already become some thing of a “thought leader” in writing my book and spreading a message of hope and renewal for widows after loss.

But am I ready, to apply this to BIGGER work? Is my walk with widowhood a doorway to leadership? Is Jesus’ example a guide?

After Thought…

Has being a widow  pushed you to become a leader? In your home, or at work? Did you adapt quickly or did it take you a while? Do you feel like lessons learned in this arena could be used elsewhere in your life, perhaps even as part of your purpose? Are you employing a servant mentality in your leadership?

Searching For Faith After Loss: What’s Wrong With Me?

I read and read. Like literally, as soon as I got home this morning, after dropping off the kids – I stayed in my car, sat in the garage, and opened my mobile bible app. I knew I had this post to do today – and it keeps me accountable for reading the bible, as I said I would. I read John 2, then 3, and kept reading because I was looking for something to jump out and move me. Honestly I kept thinking- OK these chapters are about Jesus’ works, but all his works have a hint of coincidence, like him being able to guess a woman wanting more than just water at a well. Or a boy being healed at the same time that he said he would. The way Jesus spoke ( in the CEV version anyway) it was almost as if he said a lot of things that could have been perceived in different ways. Like when he says destroy this temple, and it will be rebuilt in 3 days – but he was talking about himself, not the temple he was standing in front of. I notice my unbelief creeping up in me – the part of me that wants to be logical and debate everything I read here. I ignore it… and keep reading…looking for something that will resonate with me. And then I get to this.

“You search the Scriptures, because you think you will find eternal life in them. The Scriptures tell about me, but you refuse to come to me for eternal life.”


John 5:39-40

OH For real? That’s what we’re doing, God? Just gonna call me out? Wow.

He’s right. I sat back and thought about why I’m even reading the bible in the first place. I thought about how I wanted to know more, I wanted a deeper relationship, I wanted to be reassured after losing my husband that there was an afterlife so I wouldn’t have to be so scarred by death. I didn’t want to be afraid anymore. I was (and still am at times) skeptical, but definitely don’t want to be left out if all this is real because death scares me so much. Watching someone die has given me a real, tangible anxiety about death and the fragility of life that I battle with daily. I think about how I DO believe in God – or at least I was sure I did before he died. Now I just fear being wrong. Terribly. Unshakably. And my way of trying to shake the fear was to look for some fear-obliterating, doubt shattering message in this here bible. I’m looking for eternal life in this book – and I’m reading about the messiah that will save me. I’m literally reading about the miracles he performed – and I’m picking them apart!! I’m refusing to believe the SOURCE. I haven’t just “come to Jesus” and said, look… I need you. I’m looking in the book for logical answers, for applicable guidance, some back door code into heaven and peace… And I feel like God just plucked me in the head. What is wrong with me? Why can’t I get this? Why does my unbelief persist? I am creative! I can think outside logic. I am intelligent! I should be able to figure this out!

I suppose it’s because I’m tangible, and belief is not. I’m looking for a touchable answer to a question that is not.  I guess what I got from this is that sometimes the answer is there – whether you want to believe it or not. Not believing it or accepting it or trying to verify it with logic because it doesn’t make sense – doesn’t make it make more sense. It just IS.  It’s a lot like love. When you love someone you know they will die. You don’t have a solid answer of why or when or where they will go. You just know they’ll be gone. Yet you love them anyway, and trust they will be with you somehow, forever (which defies all logic) . That’s just the way we work. It just is. Maybe God is the same. And accepting that God “just IS” could be the stepping stone to belief that I’m missing. Peaceful Acceptance. Not the stubborn kind that makes you feel angry and helpless- but willingly accepting that some things I don’t have control over, and some things wont always make sense. Things like death, faith, and eternal life. Accepting that some things just ARE, and that can’t be proven with logic or creatively avoided, or cleverly figured out with research and brain power- maybe that is just another part of this widow journey.  

How did becoming a widow affect your acceptance of inexplicable things?  Did it affect your acceptance of faith, Jesus and/or the premise of eternal life?

Are You A Light Bearer?

So I usually post earlier in the day, but the video of what I just spent my morning doing, (a rather valiant attempt at yoga while my 16 month old terrorized the room and I) will not be posted for various reasons. ?. So now that she is tucked away and snoring, I finally have a chance to write what I got from the next bible chapter for my weekly Widow Bible Study, the 1st book of John. Please enjoy!

John was a tough read for me. I told you I’m no bible thumper, and it actually took me 3 translations, one sermon, and several “what is the message of ___” google attempts to really get what John has to do with ME. ?Because I know for a fact, that even though these stories have meaning in themselves, when we are led to read something, God usually has a reason for it. So I went on to my trusty devotional and that’s where the epiphany hit me. In the prologue of John’s testimony it talks of him not being the one true light, but coming to share his testimony of it (John 1:8). He talks of all the things God is, and how even though people know of the Word, this Word has now become a person. Talk about shock and awe! He’s saying these completely unbelievable things, wonderful things, kinda scary things – to people who didn’t believe in God, and people who kinda believed but doubted.

Again – what does that have to do with me – as a widow? Well after the death of my husband and even recently, I have fallen in and out of the category of people who kinda believed but had some doubts. Which is interesting that I would (VERY) randomly decide to start with John in the first place. I really had no idea where to go after Ruth. So I picked a name from memory. “John” it is. Coincidence? I think not! My next epiphany came with the idea that John was like a prism. In the sermons of the book “Desiring God” by John Piper, he wrote “We are made to be prisms refracting the light of God’s glory into all of life”. A prism. A light bearer. I have felt that in widowhood, as well as in my life as a coach and mentor to other widows, I have had to be a light bearer. The devotional book says:

“To reflect the light of God’s presence in a dark and damaged world we have to stay close to the source: The Son. The more we let his light shine and reflect into the eyes of others, the more we become like Him.”

New Women’s Devotional Bible – 2010

I have had to try to reflect God’s light when I wasn’t even sure I believed it – for my children who lost their father, and at times believed they had no reason to love or want to know God at all. I have had to reflect the light for other widows who fell out of love with life itself, and did not see how they could go on without their spouses. I have had to find the light for myself – when in my darkest moments I felt cursed, discarded, and completely alone, like I was just doomed to sadness, never love, or ever feel normal again. Especially in those times, I’ve learned, it only takes a small beacon of light to drive out even the darkest darkness. John was only one person with this bold, crazy sounding testimony of the Word of God becoming a person, and all the amazing things that person was going to be. John was not the Christ, the Prophet, or anyone of very high stature. He was just a voice in the desert. Baptizing people with water. (John 1:20-26) Just one prism reflecting incredible, wonderful things to those who had lost their belief, or struggled with doubts and darkness, so that they could see the light too. That’s pretty amazing. And it gives me a really good feeling about my tiny, one-person beacon of light; and my journey responding to my calling as a light bearer, too.

Are you a light bearer????

In The Face Of Death: Blame God, Retreat, Or Begin Anew?

I’m supposed to be done with Ruth, but something made me want more. The story seems so cut off, and short! So I decided to read a devotional on Ruth, to study a little closer.⠀

The study discussed how as widows we seem to face the same plight, since we all “left” our families to be with our partners. We joined lives, became one unit – and never thought twice about what would happen if we ever had to pick up where their lives ended. A lot of us are left broken, empty and restless.. Wondering – What do you do in the face of death? What does God expect us to do now?


Ruth, Orpah and Naomi all had the same dilemma, and each looked at it differently. Naomi blamed God, and decided she was just cursed, miserable and sad. Orpah retreated back to her family and her old Gods, staying in Moab in her own comfort zone. Ruth decided to let God weave her grief into a new story, following her mother in law out of empathy and love.⠀

None of these reactions are strange to me. I probably did them all, actually. I was angry with God. I did retreat back to my parents’ home. But at some point, eventually, I got tired. I was sick of blaming a God who continued to bless me in other ways. It got me nowhere and I felt like a child, throwing a tantrum. I wanted a resolution, not to stay angry. I realized at some point, the only way out of anger was going to be change.⠀

I was going to have to let go of my anger by letting go of my fears; that it would happen again, that God had cursed me, that I would never get back what I lost, being alone and bitter for the rest of my life…. I was going to have to believe in what

God said “I am making everything New”.


Revelations 21:5

I felt guilty about wanting anything new – at first. How could I betray the life I’d vowed to live? Would I even have the energy, the space in my heart, for anything ( or any ONE ) new? So I stepped out on faith, and hope, and did my best to make room for God to weave me a new story.⠀
PS – He gave me back EVERYTHING. My life is almost UN-recognizable now! 

<3 (My testimony HERE⠀
https://buff.ly/2TAMoPF )⠀

Photo credit: Disco babe by Thomas Sailot⠀
#ThreshingFloorThursdays w/BWWE

Do Widows Need A Prince Charming? Ruth Chapter 3-4

So I started reading Ruth because she’s a widow…and thought okay, this story is, at some point (I’ve heard) supposed to contain a “prince charming-esque” rescuer that’s going to sweep her off her feet and be Mister Perfect. Right? Since I hear Christian women say all the time “I want my Boaaaazzz..like hes Denzel or something ? Im thinking okay in Ruth chapter 2 She meets him…and okay he seems like a decent guy…Ruth chapter 3…still I’m bracing myself for this Romeo to start really being slay-a-dragon amazing…annnnd…chapter 4 **spoiler alert** they get married and have kids but…hes… really not what I expected. He’s a good man. Hes not even OMG “in love” with her or anything either. He just thinks shes a good girl and recognizes she is a good choice for him. Nothing extraordinary or supernatural happens. Not Lifetime Movie gold at all. Interesting. TOTALLY not a bad thing..and maybe more happens later… but so far I see just a good…decent…man who decides…yeah. ok this will work. ???‍♀️ Did I miss something? Lol

Now – I will say… there are some parallels in my own life that this story makes me think of. I definitely feel like there is a lot of hype and fluff that media and human competitiveness pushes onto women, steering us to believe love and romance only exist when expressed in extravagant ways. I’ve always hated watching/reading romantic movies and books, for 2 reasons:

1. In my mind I’m a freaking warrior princess, single mom, handling bidness, honor roll kids, clean kitchen, yoga doin, no days off, working hard, smelling like cocoa butter and beach sand in my sleep – Queen of Zamunda. I dont NEED saving and never will. My momma and daddy gave me my swag. I’m never going to need a prince, especially not just because I’m a widow. No pity parties here! #wakandaforever ?????‍♀️

2. I wind up feeling like the crazy-over-the-top lengths that the male hero goes thru to win the love of the heroine…will never hap
happen to me anyway! I feel set up for disappointment! And so to me…the plots come off corny and un-relatable. womp womp. #NoChickFlix ???

I digress.. as a widow and as a happy copilot of a serious post martial relationship – Boaz actually reminds me of both the men I fell in love with only because neither of them prescribed to the big showy romance thing, and both of them prided themselves in being simply good men. Good decent human beings with sturdy, dependable qualities and kind hearts. No frills. Nothing fancy. At times I admit I’ve protested against any compleeeete lack of mush and romantic procedure, feeling the social pressure to demand frills every now and then (Geeez!) lol..But in the end of my old love (and throughout the journey of this new love) I suppose being simply a good man is definitely proving to be all I ever needed anyway. And it has its spices and fireworks ???… without needing to be over the top or showy. Hey…whatever works.

So to answer my title question do Widows need a Prince Charming? For me the answer is no. Never have. My circumstance doesn’t make me any more or less (or at all!) in neeeeed of a good man either. But if I’m picking…just give me a good person, kind, open heart. No knights. No crazy romance sweeping off the feet origin story needed. ??‍♀️ We’re good. ❤?

Anyway, yay Ruth! She got her Boaz! He didn’t flag her down at the airport, punch a dragon, or serenade her under her window with roses and fireworks …but he was STILL exactly what she needed. ❤ #OnTimeGod #YesHeIs

#ThreshingFloorThursdays with Sabra Bwwe Robinson Black Women Widows Empowered – Empowering Widows Back to Wholeness
and www.thebouncebackproject.com
Reading the Bible, A Widow’s Perspective.

<3 (My testimony HERE⠀
https://buff.ly/2TAMoPF )⠀