Allume, writing

The One Thing That’s Not On Your Packing Checklist (How To Prepare For A Christian Conference)

October 5, 2015

To man belong the plans of the heart, but from the Lord comes the reply of the tongue. Proverbs 16:1


Soon I’ll be preparing to attend the Allume conference. I haven’t been able to attend the last 2 years and it’s starting to feel a bit like getting ready for a family reunion. As hard as it will be leave behind my four favorite people and my main squeeze, my excitement is growing when I think about meeting up with some of my favorite people that I almost never get to see. I’ve been thinking a lot about what this trip means for me this year, and while I don’t know what God has in store, I feel confident that I am supposed to be there.

I have two previous Allume experiences under my belt, and several other conferences, so I know better this year about what to bring, and what not to bother with. I know about saving room for swag, and organizing the business cards I will receive. I know about making sure to stay hydrated and wear comfortable shoes. I know better than to plan on catching up on missed sleep.

Allume Conference Smilebooth 0671-L

I know it’s ok to drink 3 cups of coffee and eat cupcakes at midnight with girlfriends, even though I never do that sort of craziness here at home.

My detail oriented Husband has an incredibly organized packing checklist that he always prints off for me before I travel, which saves me from forgetting many a key item. I would likely leave the most obvious necessities at home, if it weren’t for this piece of paper that acts as my brain when the suitcases come out.

There is one thing though, that is not on the packing checklist. 

Lessons learned

I  have a bit of a history with this conference, and though it’s been several years, I still carry the marks that initial trip left on my heart.  That first year I attended, I spent the whole plane ride there asking God to help me to receive whatever the message was He wanted me to take away. The opportunity had been so clearly an act of Divine Intervention, I prayed less out of obedience and more out of sheer awe. God used that first Allume to usher me into a new season.

Now, between scheduling a haircut, planning activities for the kids in my absence, stocking the fridge, making sure everyone here will have clean clothes, and scanning the closet for my own suitable conference attire, I am reminded of the importance of this one key thing that I could easily forget:

Prepare your heart.

Blogging conferences are no longer “new” to me. I attend this year as a well seasoned veteran.  Though there will still be “firsts” for me to experience, I am confident of a few things–what I wear at the conference is mostly irrelevant. God’s got bigger plans than whether of not those knee-high brown boots will work with that skirt, or if that turquios bobble necklace is too 2012. (That said, if you are getting head shots taken, or meeting with agents and Editors, then do bring something other than your yoga pants to wear).

You’re going to meet people you’ve never met at Allume. You’re going to have dinner conversations with people that will break down the dam in your heart and your going to find a community of women who love and encourage you. They may be your roommates. They might be your table mates one night at dinner. Maybe you’ll meet them in the prayer room, as they pray over you. You may not know yet, but God does, and He has already appointed these special moments in your trip. You may be a shoulder for your new friend to lean on, and you might even find you need a shoulder too. Be open to this.

Prepare your heart.

Someone might say something to you that changes the entire course of your blogging, or even more, your life. This may sound dramatic, but it’s true. I continue to experience the ripples from the very first Allume (Relevant) conference I attended 6 years ago. God wastes nothing.

God’s going to show up and remind you that He’s in control, and that you can (and should) stockpile all the brilliant advice you want in that social media session but ultimately, it’s going to come down to one thing–Jesus.

Prepare your heart.

Yes, get your hair done, get a manicure, try on twenty-five outfits–fine, yes, I get it. Do all of those things if you want to. But add this one thing to your list–

Prepare your heart. Spend some time in prayer, and ask God to open your eyes, ears and heart to the people and conversations you will have.

God knows why you are going to Allume this year, even if you’re like me, and aren’t entirely sure what He has for you there.

Sow for yourselves righteousness, reap the fruit of unfailing love, and break up your unplowed ground;

for it is time to seek the Lord, until he comes and showers righteousness on you. Hosea 10:12

Are you going to Allume? How are you preparing for the conference? Are you attending my Creative Session: Make It Pop: The Art Of Creating Beautiful Images? Let me know in the comments so I can be looking for you!

Download my FREE, No-Frills Packing list


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Allume, Faith


September 23, 2015

If you follow me on Instagram, it’s possible that you’ve bumped into one of my “morning meditations” posts, usually shared between 6-7AM. I wake daily with the goal of getting some time in with my journaling bible and my journal before the kids are all up and our day takes off. This brief, quiet time alone with the Word helps set the tone for my day. Days when I am rushed or skip it, I can always feel it, I don’t know how to describe it, other than to say it’s a bit like wearing a sock with a hole in it–I can get by, but it’s bothersome knowing that something isn’t as it should be. Apart from studying God’s Word, I am not as I should be. His word literally keeps my spirit and faith alive–it feeds me.

KrisCamealy_ journaling bible

One of the great gifts and delights of devoted study time, is that despite reading the same passages again and again, the Word’s never get old.

Some mornings the words seem to peel up from the page, begging me to notice them anew. And of course in response to such an invitation, I do. I notice them like never before. I might suddenly understand what moments ago eluded me. Living and active–that’s what Paul says in the book of Hebrews, that’s how he describes God’s inspired word. I feel it breathing new life into my own faith with each line I ingest. God gives new revelation of Himself, through Himself, for He IS the Word, just as John said.

In The beginning was the Word and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. (John 1:1)

bible_Allume blog copy

Join me over at Allume to finish reading this post.

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Obedience, Surrender, Trust

When God Invites You

August 25, 2015

“We have to be braver than we think we can be, because God is constantly calling us to be more than we are.” ~Madeline L’Engle

It’s been  4 weeks since I stood up in front of the women at Declare and bared some of the uglier parts of my story.

I’m still feeling tender from the experience.

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I have thought about how to share this with you for weeks, initially deciding that I wouldn’t, because it’s too hard and it requires more vulnerability. I convinced myself that no one needs a re-cap, when the truth is that I simply don’t want to re-live it, rehash it, reconsider it.

(Nothing went wrong, I ought to say that outright. The angst I’ve been wrestling through is entirely my own, and not the result of any negative feedback received on my end, after-the-fact.)

I went of course, purely on God’s invitation, extended to me through the beautiful women behind the event. But since coming home, the words I said, or forgot to say have dogged me steadily, nipping at my heels and pulling at the loose ends of my heart. It’s been 4 weeks. But I am growing increasingly s l o w at processing life. (Apparently, I’m not the only one, which I confess, is a relief.)

The insecurities started within 24 hours of wearing that microphone pinned to my collar. I prayed for weeks leading up to the event to just get out of the way. I’ve been at this long enough to know that when God extends an invitation, it’s because He has something to say–because someone, even if it’s  just ONE person sitting there, needs to hear it.

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I accepted the invitation. I attended an event that bore the scent of heaven around every corner. God was surely in that place. Nothing makes a person feel smaller and more humbled than being in the palpable presence of God. I’d say, this is to be our usual position–small, humbled.

To want to be known is Biblical but it’s not to be by people. You are to be known by God.

When I stood up there that first night, I gave the message I think God had intended all along. It’s not a new one for me. But it’s not an easy one either, because in it, before the beautiful, merciful redemption, is the ugly truth of where I’ve been. The beginning is harder than the middle. But even as I say this I realize that it is my pride that reacts this way, it’s the part I repeatedly wrestle, in attempts to smother it once and for all. It’s the part of me that wants to appear holier-than-thou, the part that struggles to confess brokenness.

God is not punishing us when He takes that which is toxic out of our hands.

The story really is beautiful, I’ve been forced to remind myself over these last few weeks. Not because of me but because of the ways God drapes Himself over my mess and transforms what was destined for destruction, into something that can encourage others–only by His grace. Only out of love and mercy.

We are called to make disciples for Jesus not fans & followers for ourselves.

Someone has to deliver the unpopular message that it’s not actually all about us. If the most trusted messengers are the one’s who speak from experience, then in this area, I am a certifiable expert, having lived the bulk of my life purely for and by my own ways and means.

That is what God invited me to share–that’s the message He’s had me re-tell lately, like it’s the only story I’ve got. That story is the reason I sign everything with the phrase, “By His Strength, For His glory”, because for most of my life it looked more like, “By MY strength, for MY glory”.

When you lose your idols, it’s a relief – maybe not at first – but it will be.

In the days since I’ve felt the words of my keynote hurled against me like whips. The barbs of the pieces I intended to say, but forgot, and the bits of detail I neglected in my nervousness, have come at me like fiery arrows. I know it’s not God’s condemnation. And I’m not fishing for affirmation. I went at God’s invitation, and served Him to the best of my ability. Perfect?–I was not. Flawed and human and honest?–I was–I am

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This coup the enemy has staged against my heart is not unique to me. When I shared my wrestlings with other friends who are also writers and speakers, they expressed having had similar battles in the aftermath of delivering a message. Because he’s a thief, the enemy of my soul has fought hard to steal the gift of the invitation. Because he’s a thief, he’s probably stealing something from you right now. Check your pockets.

The part about my talk that makes me the most uncomfortable is the part that seems to resonate most. I repeatedly hear these two words: authentic and vulnerable. I can embrace that, if it means people will see God bigger than they see my mess. I can keep it real if it means people will know God is real. I can shatter and break if it means God’s light is more magnificently reflected in all of the piece–if it means the repair is more beautiful than the original.

When God invites you, it is a gift. When you go in His strength, when you pray for Him to take over, He does. That’s what I am continually reminded of.  When God asks you to keep telling the same story, there’s a reason for it. Trust Him, accept the invitation, and believe in His purposes.


 If God has given you a dream it’s because He has a purpose for it.


*All images used with permission from the amazing Courtney “Coco” Mitchell.

Sharing this story in community with Jennifer Lee.

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Friendship, GraceTable, Guest posting

When God Answers Your Longing

August 5, 2015

I woke that morning with a restless ache to stick my toes deep into cool sand and feel the salt of the sea wash over my skin. I wasn’t asking for anything, I’d only taken my lament to Instagram, as I am sometimes apt to do. I desperately miss the beach, a severe downside of living landlocked as we do, here in middle Ohio. The creeks and rivers within driving distance fail to satisfy the longing for the roar of the ocean. They possess a beauty of their own, but the ocean is wild and perhaps, that’s what I needed most that morning–the awe and reverence I experience every time I stand at the edge where the waves break.

I wanted to be quieted by the relentless shushing of the waves.

So I took my hunger to Instagram and made my wrestling known to some 4000 plus people. I don’t know why we do this. Social media is a necessary part of my work, and also something with which I bounce between loving and hating on a near daily basis. But in a few charcaters, I asked the question: what is behind this longing?–because I genuinely wanted to know.

I am learning to pay attention to my life, to the hunger pangs that arise, to the aches that force tears, to all the moments I can too easily blast right through. I want to understand the shape of my life, to trace the contours of my unique design. In her book, Gift From The Sea, Anne Morrow Lindburgh says,

“The shape of my life is, of course, determined by many things; my background and childhood, my mind and its education, my conscience and its pressures, my heart and its desires.”

And so I’m making practice of observing the shape of my life, and the events and circumstances and people that have helped press it into what it is in this season. But when I shared my post that sad morning, I did not (nor could I have) anticipated that a friend would answer the cries of my heart in the most stunning way. Her message came swiftly, offering a care package from the sea.

Join me for the rest of this story at GRACETABLE.ORG

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On Borrowing Bravery

July 23, 2015

We are going to be asked to do hard,

The first year I started blogging, I did a series on fear. A lot has changed in the years since writing that series, and I no longer battle the same fears that used to plague me. God has taught me a lot about what bravery looks like, and blessed me with numerous friends over the last hand full of years who have encouraged me, and pushed me to do things I might otherwise not have. Recently, I was thinking about this, and remembered a time God used my friends to help me face one of my fears.

When I was 16 a friend pushed me to the top of a mountain. Within mere seconds of setting my feet at the top, I fell all the way down–literally from the top, to the bottom.

Let me explain.

The morning we gathered our belongings and suited up for a ski trip in the hills of Pennsylvania started off like any other cold Virginia morning. The church parking lot hummed with the chattering of anxious kids, spouting off about what amazing skiers they were and which mountains they planned to attack first. I felt like a coral fox, sporting my Mom’s melon colored snow suit from the late 80’s and her “Wookie” boots she’d picked up while we had lived overseas. (These boots were so rad. They were covered in long, white goat fur) I’d even matched my nail polish to my snow suit. Obviously, I had my priorities in order.

When we arrived at the ski lodge after pairing off with some friends, one of the guys I was with asked me to ski with him. As we made our way to the lift we needed to catch to the top, I watched as we passed all of the signs for the green (beginner) and blue-level courses (intermediate, for you non-skiers).  At this point, despite the frigid air, I started to sweat. “Where are we going?” I called to my friend who conveniently blocked the sign to the mountain we planned to ski.


Join me at Allume for the rest of this story.


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The Greatest

June 29, 2015

I’ve wanted to achieve greatness for as long as I can remember. For years, the drive surged from the dark underbelly of pride that scratched and clawed to be let loose. It was an ugly desire–baring nothing good or wholesome about it.

I think the desire for greatness is not altogether bad. The desire to succeed has driven many a person to become world-changers in their own right. The conviction that drives creation and improvisation, in and of itself, is not a wicked thing. The trouble arises when we misuse our gifts, misunderstand our purpose and mishandle our desires. The trouble is, we forget the One who equips and calls us to such labor. Like the disciples, we want the glory apart from suffering.
Let him who is the greatest among you

In Luke 22, Jesus is gathered with the disciples at the Last Supper when they begin to argue about which one of them is considered the greatest. As Jesus prepares to head to the cross, the 12 are concerned about which one of them will be remembered above the others. At first read, I balk at their audacity. I can’t imagine sitting beside the SON OF GOD, bickering with my friends about who among us would be considered great. But my inability to imagine the audacity of this scene only stems from my pride, because as quickly as I have that thought, I recognize that the only reason I cannot imagine it is because I have already claimed my own greatness over that of the disciples. I would never do that, I presume. And in that quick twisting of thoughts, I find myself there at the table, tossing my own name in the ring for greatness.

Come read the rest of this over at GraceTable. 

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For All The Girls Who Don’t Feel Like They Measure Up

June 12, 2015

I spent the whole day outside with my kids in the yard. They splashed wild in the inflatable pool, while I sat under the umbrella working and reading. With the heat nearing 90, I came inside to change into something cooler. After trying on a couple of things that no longer fit, I felt the waves of discouragement begin to roll over me. This body is not what it once was.


Giving up on the sun-dress idea, I reach instead for my swim-dress (yea, so I have become THAT mom) It’s stretchy and it fits. I put it on and stare long at myself with critical eyes. Standing in front of the mirror I hear the whispers begin inside. My eyes travel the landscape of my reflection to all of my “trouble spots”. It seems the peace negotiations with my body rage on.

I have looked into glass and felt utter contempt for this tent, this skin that houses these bones, this heart. I have flipped through magazines and felt nothing other than the weight of obvious inadequacy, as I stared empty into airbrushed beauty. I remember the difficult years of middle school, of being small and late to bloom, I remember the dreaded feeling of changing in the locker room in High School, of hiding in stalls to change clothes.



I remember countless hours spent reading ‘girl’ magazines only to set them aside and feel completely disgusted for all of the ways I failed to measure up.

I remember friends sucking down diet pills and trying to survive on just an apple all day. And while I never did these things, I abused my body in other ways. I told myself horrible lies about who I was. And I believed every single word. In the past, I have let all sorts of other things define who I am.

That was a long time ago. And despite being all grown up now, the struggle continues to wreak havoc on my heart. Everything has changed yet this issue continues to haunt me. I have a husband who loves me and children who say they “love me so much their hearts are bursting with love for me”, and isn’t that something? Even more than this, I have a Heavenly Father who created me in his image, and for years I have spit back at that image. I have held up hands and refused to look at it. I have cried and hated that image for all it’s human flaws and snags.

For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb. Psalm 139:13


This frame, this body, is a greenhouse of sorts, and in it. seeds have been planted and sown and grown, it has expanded and contracted to hold safe inside, the life of four other human beings. I have looked disgusted at it, and thrown rocks at it. I have smashed greenhouse windows with my negative thoughts about the shape of this body.

Yes, this body has acted as a greenhouse, a sweaty, hormonal, space that has been filled and emptied, it has endured the long uncomfortable seasons of growth but isn’t it supposed to be a temple? Isn’t there supposed to be a place for the Holy Spirit to dwell within? I would no sooner walk past a temple, and pitch stones through it’s stained glass windows, or call out as I pass by that Holy place, how ugly I think it may be. Not ever. Yet when it comes to this figure, I don’t even hesitate. I hurl rocks of cruel words as if my life depends on it some days.

Your still so big.”

“Your middle is so smooshy.”

” Your legs are thick”

“Your arms are flabby”

“Look at your thighs! “

“You are not good enough.”


While I know these are the poisonous lies of the deceiver, still some days, they fall like truth on my ears. I hear them, I repeat them and I believe them. I have used them to assault myself, as a twisted form of motivation to eat better, run more, lose more weight–to somehow encourage myself to be good enough.

No More.

I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well. Psalm 139:14

I know that when the assault threatens to begin, when the lies creep up, I am reminded that they are in fact, lies. I can find a great number of encouraging words to replace them with,

So God created mankind in his own image,
in the image of God he created them;
male and female he created them. Genesis 1:27

How can something created in the image of the Father be anything less than magnificent? God has created an entire world that blossoms beauty everywhere, under every stone, and behind every tree, this whole incredible creation, a reflection of his magnificent glory. We have defiled his works, we have mutilated what he originally created and saw as “good” and done our best to re-make beauty in our own image.

But our ability to define beauty, our ability to create beauty, doesn’t even compare to the work of the Master. We are finger painters to God’s Michelangelo. We can only know real beauty, real worth, through knowing and defining ourselves through Christ.

For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Ephesians 2:10

All of the stones I have thrown, all of the various ways I have afflicted injury on my own heart, all of the lies I have swallowed and taken as nourishment are easily defeated by the truth that is found in allowing Christ to define me.

Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? 1 Corinthians 6:19


This body I have, however imperfect, or soft, or round or lumpy or weak, weather it’s too pale or too freckled, legs too short, weather the tag in my jeans is an 8 or an 18, (and I have worn both) It is none-the-less a Temple to be kept and honored as such. This flawed skin and sometimes untamable hair is all a gift created in the image of the Father, for his glory. The deceiver would have you (and I) believe otherwise. The world would have you believe otherwise as well. But our worth, our value, comes not from either of these sources, but strictly from the one who made us.

What we know is that when Christ is openly revealed, we’ll see him-and in seeing him, become like him. 1 John 3:2 (Msg)

The only one who determines our value, the only one who has a right to, is Christ Jesus.

Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. Luke 12:7


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May 28, 2015

It started when a friend emailed asking for a guest post and mentioned my photography as part of the post. And then within that same week, another friend sends me a bold message telling me in essence to own what I do, when I play with my camera–to remove that word–“wannabe“.


These nudges out of nowhere stretch me in a way I felt unprepared for. This encouragement, completely off my radar.

It’s safe to say I’m not alone in finding it difficult to wear some labels honestly.

I feel so much like an impostor most of the time.

Yet, some titles sit somewhat naturally. I teach–I’m a teacher. I raise children–I’m a mom.

We don’t seem to wrestle with the obvious ones, the ones that people can’t wager an opinion on. I drive–I’m a driver. I read–I’m a reader…


It’s different with art. How many of us are willing to call ourselves artists?

 We’re waiting for that mystical qualifier. Sometimes, we’re waiting for a particular person to crown us with the title, too timid to claim it ourselves. Afraid of seeming prideful. Afraid of being discounted, busy outlining our numerous disqualifying factors.

In a very real sense, none of us is qualified, but it seems that God continually chooses the most unqualified to do His work, to bear His glory. ~Madeline L’Engle

But what if there’s no grand coronation? What if you wait half a lifetime or more to be who you really are?–What then? Without outside confirmation, are we liars in calling ourselves writer, painter, photographer, poet?

I hope not.

If we are forced to accept our evident lack of qualification, then there’s no danger that we will confuse God’s work with our own, or God’s glory with our own. ~Madeline L’Engle

What if God calls us to an art purely for His pleasure, and not for the stamp of approval of the world–will we own it? Will we hold the pen in our hands, and smear paint on the page purely for His own pleasure and worship?

Some titles hang awkward around our shoulders, it feels like a stretch to remain upright, to get comfortable in what feels uncomfortable.


I’ve said that calling myself a writer, or a photographer, (even though I do both of those things), feels a bit like wearing a dress I can’t afford while pretending I can. I love the way it looks, I want to wear it well, but I’m afraid to cut the tags.

But today, here’s what I propose:

If you get this– if you feel awkward, or silly or uncomfortable wearing that title that feels too big for you, wear it any way.

Your gifts and talents are hand-crafted in you, for the ultimate glory of God. He picked them out specifically for you and while you wrestle with your worth, and the clanging symbols of the world, who shout you down with their faithless pessimism and  bitter cynicism, you cling to the cross. Remember, you are made for THIS.

You have the capacity to perform the human act of making art, of doing what comes from deep within you and touched something deep within me. ~Emily P. Freeman

So own it. Be who God has made you to be.

Your gifts and talents are hand-crafted

Glorify God every time you write or paint or dance or sing or bake or skate or swim–and when someone asks you about how you do what you do, point them in the direction of the Kingdom.

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive and inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving. Colossians 3:23-24

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Obedience, Sacrifice, Surrender

Same Old Story

May 12, 2015

A couple of weeks ago, I held a microphone in my hand and told my messy-pride story to 150 of the most gracious women, who laughed at all the right moments, and caught their breath with me when I fought back tears. I prayed (begged) God to keep me from completely dissolving when I told my story, because–are you ready?– it hurts my pride to stand there and sob in front of the room.

Ha. Yeah. My pride.


It’s the same old story with me, every time God has opened the doors for me to speak, it’s this story He asks me to tell. It’s my redemption story–well, really, it’s the story of how God grabbed me up from the pit. It’s all His doing. Lord knows I tried (and failed) at saving myself.

He’s saving me still–


Before I left for the event, I was talking about my pre-speaking jitters with my friend Deidra (a woman of incredible grace and wisdom) and she told me, “we get to be terrified, so God can be glorified”. When I told her I didn’t have anything written down for my talk, I heard the understanding confidence in her voice as she told me that she regularly speaks without notes or outlines. She relies on the Holy Spirit, and we laughed at the insanity of it, and marveled in awe of how God has always come through.


God met me there. I spoke without notes, because I know the story God asks me to tell well–I ought to, I’ve lived it. It is little more than my testimony. I did weep, but God was merciful and held my tears back until after the event, when I was alone in my car.

Bless Him.

For years I didn’t think I had a story. Because my life lacked some of the shock and awe of the testimonies of my friends, I believed I had nothing valuable to contribute in the realm of redemption tales.


What’s the big deal about a “good girl” finding Jesus? (That’s what I told myself). What I’d lived blind to for so many years, was how being a “good girl” had inflated my pride, I mocked the Pharisees all the while oblivious to my own likeness to them.

Pride is a filthy beast–a dragon that can only be slain daily by the Host of Heaven.

Lately, when I think I’m done telling that story, God props open another door and says, “tell it again”. I admit, sometimes, my shoulders sag. Little bits of my pride begin to glow and smoke,  “Really?–that same old story?” I ask Him.

In my mind I see Him nod. In the repeated telling of how grace continues to transform me, cool water is poured over the embers of my self-righteousness that threaten burn still.


When we keep talking about the goodness of God, we remain tucked in the safety of His shadow.

The only true version of the story is the one where God is the rescuer. We are never the hero of our stories.

My flesh remains ever-eager to spin it a little to the left. I’d rather not reveal the ugliness of my past because I don’t want you to judge me. But in pretending it wasn’t as bad as it was, I risk cheapening the grace that has been afforded to me, and nudge God from the center, fighting Him for the glory.


Because God is continually renewing us, we need to continually tell of His mercy. The truth is, as much as I fear having to divulge the depths of my depravity before God cracked me open, redemption stories are beautiful, and worthy of re-telling.

In telling of His goodness, the choke-hold of shame is loosened.

Every opportunity to share about the grace of Jesus is a gift.

Monica and me

My dear friend Monica drove for a couple of hours to be there that night.

Whatever your story is, keep on telling it. Let it be a consent reminder to you of how God continues to save you.


*My dear friend, Monica drove I don’t know how many hours to sit at the front row table and encourage me that night. Monica had just been in the hospital undergoing painful but critical treatment for her ongoing health struggles. SHE was the face of Jesus in the crowd for me that night, her generosity unbound, and gratuitous. You can get to know Monica HERE.


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Faith, Obedience

Hold The Door {My Declare Conference Podcast}

April 23, 2015

Several months ago, the beautiful women behind the Declare conference reached out to me, and invited to serve as the keynote speaker at their conference this summer.

The invitation came as a complete surprise on the heels of returning from Refine {the retreat}. This opportunity is an outlandish gift, and a divine opportunity that I never saw coming.

One of the challenging lessons God continues to teach me about is humility. If you’ve read my book, you know some of this story already. You know how I’ve battled pride and how God has transformed me through His generous refining process. At Refine, God asked me to be a “door holder”, which comes from Psalm 84:10. It’s been a year since God pressed this message into my heart, I am still learning what this means. Already I can tell you that the journey so far has been astounding and beautiful. god repeatedly reminds me that when we serve in the specific places and ways that he has called us, the burden is lighter because He enables us to do the work. The freedom that comes through obedience is life-giving.

I am both excited and completely humbled to be traveling to Dallas in July to help hold the door for the attendees and share a message that God has burdened my heart with for a long time.

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A couple of weeks ago, I had the opportunity to chat with Heather about some of the ways God has asked me to step out in faith over the last several years. You can listen in HERE.

I pray you are encouraged and inspired to step into those places where God is calling you. Let me know if I will be seeing you at Declare. I’d love to give you a hug in July!

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