a·lone (-ln)
1. Being apart from others; solitary.
2. Being without anyone or anything else; only.
3. Considered separately from all others of the same class.
4. Being without equal; unique.

1. Without others: sang alone while the choir listened.
2. Without help: carried the suitcases alone.
3. Exclusively; only: The burden of proof rests on the prosecution alone.

It doesn't matter who I am with...who sits right next to me...who calls me on the phone...who e-mails me...who makes me laugh...I am feeling really...alone. A-L-O-N-E.

And it's not really "lonely"'s just alone. And there is a difference. I know, because I am living it right now. By myself. Like I'm a foreigner in a very foreign place. I am speaking a completely different language than EVERYONE else. Even if we speak the same language, it is not understood. I am not, and I have not been for a while...understood. Maybe it's a little old paranoia creeping in...wondering if I am good enough, because I do believe I am not. And I do believe, at times, others believe the same. Like I've been hidden in plain can see me, but you can't read me. You know what I meant I said. :)

The words are different. The music is different. The writing is different. The colors are different. Is it a valley? Is it some make-believe dwelling? Is it a really weird dream? What should I be doing? Thinking? Writing? Praying? Confusing...yet I am not confused...somehow. But...I do feel as if I am missing...something.

So, what to do, you ask?

There are just some things I believe we are not supposed to analize or try to understand. And I think this is one of those things. I cannot explain it; no matter how you phrase the question, I just...can't. I'm not worried or anxious or in one of those deep dark places. Maybe I should just ride this out...I would gladly take know, so as not to feel I'm TOTALLY alone in feeling alone.

"Sing to God, sing in praise of his name,
extol him who rides on the clouds;
rejoice before him—his name is the Lord
A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows,
is God in his holy dwelling. 
God sets the lonely in families,
he leads out the prisoners with singing;
but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land." Psalm 68:4-6


Not Just a Listener...

Our Ladies Bible Study is going through Beth Moore's newest Bible Study "James: Mercy Triumphs." If you haven't had the should splurge. It's definately a keeper.

In the study, she encourages us to memorize the Book. "Memo-WHAT?" you might ask? Well, to be honest, I have memorized the book of James before. In a former I-know-I-need-something-more, very YOUNG Christian walk. It was my former Music Pastor's idea when I felt I was being prompted by the Holy Spirit to fast for the very first time. His words of encouragemnet were "when you begin to feel hungry, feed your mind. Memorize the book of James...your body will feel full as you fill your mind with God's Word." And it worked.

My problem is that all these years later (about 25 years actually), I can only remember bits and pieces. The first chapter and then some random verses from chapters 4 and 5. And I struggle with the memorization much as I did oh-so-many years ago. But that isn't what bothers me...I think we ALL have that problem...remembering. Sometimes we can "come up" with a scripture we "forgot" we knew...and surprise ourselves at how close we were when reciting it during a time of crisis or encouragement.

What bothers me is that memorizing God's word should not be done just for memorization sake. Not because it seems like a good idea, because; after all, hiding God's Word in your heart and mind is a commandment...right? And not because memorizing the Word makes us look or seem Godly to our peers. "Oh, she KNOWS God's Word...right off the top of her head!" Memorizing the Word certainly does NOT make you more..."GODLY".

It's knowing God's Word and LIVING God's Word. You may be able to quote James chapters 1-5 to me verbatim in the KING JAMES, but if you cannot live, say, James 5:9: "Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge standeth before the door.", it doesn't matter if you can quote it to me at the snap of a finger; if you cannot PROVE His Word through your life, your words are just rhetoric. (The Message says it like this: "Friends, don't complain about each other. A far greater complaint could be lodged against you, you know. The Judge is standing just around the corner.")

The closing of every Sunday in our little church: "Do not be hearers of the Word, but doers also" (James 1:22). Being a "doer" means we forgive one another our petty little gripes and grievances...we move on...we do not allow the Enemy to take a foothold in our relationships or in our pulpits. We don't allow gossip in our churches...we practice what we've memorized!

Memorizing is a very good thing. Understanding and putting those truths into practice is even better. It behooves us to know that "...the effectual, fervant prayer of a righteous man availeth much." And "Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows."

These words are powerful...and they should wield power in our everyday lives. Not just collect dust in our minds. Live it. Do it. Breathe it. Practice it. BE it.

"But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness." James 3:17-18.

Peace and Praise...



No, not the sticky Marshmallow stuff you put on bread with peanut butter...sorry.,, and
U...understanding through
F...forgiveness and

We are studying Deuteronomy in Sunday School. Today...Deuteronomy 10 & 11. This is what I got: Faith...Forgiveness...Flexibility. God is an incredible Promise Keeper. No matter what I do. No matter how many times I mess up. No matter what words come tumbling out of my mouth, no matter what faces I make, no matter what thoughts are going through my head (and out on "paper")...He is FAITHFUL to FORGIVE ME. And He is faithful to DISCIPLINE me, as well. And I accept that.

I had MANY titles going through my head for this blog...I won't share them all here...they may work for something else! BUT...I believe I needed to choose between FLUFF and "Dwelling on Obsession...My Reality". I liked FLUFF better. It seemed more...positive...yes? :)

I am a DWELLER. Not like a "Cliff-Dweller"...I D-W-E-L-L on things. I mull them over in my mind...rehash the situation...the conversation...the sermon...the song...the, insert-obsessive-compulsive-disorder-here. EVERYTHING. Until it's resolved. Exhausted. Over. Caput. I DWELL it to DEATH! I am certain I hear friends and family mumble under their breath...let it go, release it, set it FREE ALREADY!

Here's the thing. I know who I am...what I am...I know I obsess. I know I can be extreme. I know I make mistakes. I know I need Christ to soften me...mold me...shape me...bend me...I just have difficulty, at times, verbalizing  the need. I can feel the expectations of me. Expectations because of "who" I am...a Pastor's Wife. A Worship Leader. God's Word says that Teachers will be held to a "higher standard" simply because of the calling. A Pastor is a teacher. Right? Therefore, being the wife of a Teacher...there is an expectation of how I should behave. Mistakes I am never allowed to matter WHO I am.

As of late, I have had some difficulty "measuring up" to those expectations and am paying for it dearly. It doesn't matter if the only person who reads this blog is ME...I find solace and slight redemption in writing. So, here I am. Writing.

FLUFF just needs to be my life right now. No matter what I may have done to ANYONE in my life, I always find difficulty in forgiving MYSELF. I think we may all be like that...we are harder on ourselves in certain situations...true? I need to find faith in myself. Love for myself (this is, at times, the hardest of all). Understanding for myself. Forgiveness for myself. And I REALLY need to practice flexibility. There are times I need to "cut myself some slack", so to speak.

God's Word is clear: "Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him." Colossians 3:12-17

I AM chosen by God...dearly loved. I want to be compassionate and kind, humble, gentle and patient to those I come into contact with every day. Forgiving OTHERS is usually NOT a problem for's forgiving MYSELF. I have no grievances...I hold no grudges. And I am INCREDIBLY thankful for those God has put in my life to teach me...disciple me...rebuke me and love me.

Realizing the hurt I may have caused another sojourner is, dare I say it...overwhelmingly emotional. I know I am not alone when I say I have trouble controlling deep, raw emotions. I am usually in a place where, if I do not allow those emotions to spill out, they threaten to envelope choke the very life from me. It can be a very dark and foreboding place; and finding my way out is, to say the very least, exhausting. And I am at my most vulnerable when I am emotionally exhausted.

So...all that to say...I need to live a more...FLUFF-y life. I am hoping the first step is a "soft" one.



As I Lay Sleeping...

I dreamt...

So much noise. All around me. Words. Phrases. Sentences. Paragraphs. All coming from faceless entities. I cannot distinguish one from another. Part of me wants to scream. Part of me needs to weep. And still another part desires to just stand still, motionless, silent. Closing my eyes allowing the rhetoric to swirl around me...some of those words, thoughts, penetrating my skin. Some of it is refreshing...some, comforting...some giving me pain...gut-wrenching, face twisting pain.

I just want to find where I am. Who I am. I need to remember the deepest part inside of me. The root from which I was born. I need to get back to that Sunday School, Jesus-Loves-Me-This-I-Know innocence I knew as a child; when my deepest thought was deciding between bologna and cheese or peanutbutter and jelly.

Still, here I stand. I know who I can and cannot trust. And the truth I know in my very heart...the deepest part of my very soul is this:

Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so. Little ones to Him belong, they are weak, but He is strong. Yes Jesus loves me...yes Jesus loves me. Yes, Jesus loves me; the Bible tells me so. your weakest moments...cling to that innocent childhood truth. Find comfort there. And dream.