Create + Write + Inspire
by Jennifer Kelly on August 16th, 2017

Disappointment always hits the gut first.

Inhale ... Exhale.

It's fascinating how quickly our minds begin to calculate a back-up plan the minute devastation pounces in on our circumstances. What was once so hopeful and planned is now shaky and unsure. Temperamental balance is called into question. Deep breaths are hard to push through and our body needs centering; it's why we naturally crouch down to the ground. Bearings are essential in times of pain, but the question arises: what foundational principles have we cultivated in order to cling to during times of despair?

Unwanted news blows its first punch like lightning, but the reality of grief creeps its way up from the gut like thunder. Cause and effect are intertwined yet separated. The theory that nothing travels faster than light is wrong, pain travels twice as fast.

Disappointment is heartburn.
Slow burning fire in the middle of your chest.
Then it makes its way out of your mouth — sometimes in expletives.

Your eyes close and "crap/oh-no/****" usually slip forth in a whisper. Whatever audible words are used usually depends on your upbringing and religious association.

Soon you realize that there is nothing to do but sit.


So, you lean back to the reality of bad news and heartburn.
And then the questions come.

Why...? What if...? How did...?
Different scenarios haunt the mind relentlessly — even in the midst of calculating Plan B.

I no longer wonder why "hope deferred makes the heart sick" (Proverbs 13:12). When hope seems beyond deferred, my heart aches in pandemonium.

Unmet expectations.

My go-to sin is usually wrapped up in packages in times like this. Instead of going to God, I go elsewhere. Anything that provides relief. I oftentimes think I need comfort in unnatural resources instead of choosing the super-natural Spirit of God.

Why do we so easily give our lives over to a state of temporal false-blissness in the midst of turmoil? Food, alcohol, shopping, sex, entertainment, pills, etc...

Unmet desires are sometimes meant to be unmet for a while. You mix that in with a dose of rejection, hurt, abandonment or neglect and our sin becomes painstakingly clear. And as humans living in the 21st century, the struggle is REAL with so many quick-fixes available 24/7.

I truly believe that immediate gratification is this generation's Doctor Faustus story; our deal with the devil.

I'm learning (slowly) that it is IN the midst of failure, rejection, bad news and disappointment which lies (the most imperative) half-second response of: wild-abandoned faith or habitual comfort.

I've chosen the latter most of my life.
The crux of the problem always comes around to trust:
Is God in this?
Will the power of the Holy Spirit really show up in me?
Can I choose to walk in the light?

I've committed my plan A & B to opening Scripture and saying a prayer.
Or the other way around.
Or both at the same time.
Here’s why:

When I have unexpected traumatic heartburn (and learn to take a moment for it to resonate) the impulsive feelings that scream for my attention start to die down. I can then choose wise activities that focus my attention on Jesus. Immediately, singing a hymn or reading Scripture ushers hope into context. What I mean is that I am reminded that Jesus (and His promises) are eternal and my disappointment is temporal. Kingdom living comes back in the equation of living. My focus shifts and my heart learns to anchor there (this takes a lifetime of futile attempts/practice/failing/starting over again/rinse/repeat).

Immediate gratification still rears its ugly head, but my habits (and I would argue ultimately: character) changes when I bravely choose wild-abandoned faith over habitual comfort (like half-gallon containers of pecan praline ice cream or a bottle of wine).

Listen to me friends … this is never fun in the beginning. Ever. It's just like learning to run or work-out. It sucks in the beginning (especially at 34). With sober, steadfast determination, good muscles grow and I find pace and progress that illuminates in the dark.

I took a happenstance walk around a lake-park today and met a friend, by Spirit-chance. She told me her story with joy and tears and all the adjectives that describe a life on a hard journey. Her story has parts of mine and yours and all the women who have walked this life with God. Rejection. Pain. Hurt — and a hope that carries her through the devastation of yesterday, knowing Jesus is her today.

My friend is a kick-ass, honest, God-fearing woman who is comfortable in admitting her displeasure in crap and unmet expectations (how I wish more women could buck the system and say truth like this out-loud), AND testifies about the love of God that does not waiver. Because she believes, and her comfort is not top priority. Her choice is Jesus today and the road is narrow. Against all hope, IN hope she believes that God has a plan specifically for her and loves her, despite the heartburn and pain. She has gotten comfortable in sadness.

She chooses to walk in the light amidst the disappointments of dreams of a different life. Her countenance rests squarely on doing and being IN the will of God.
And I want to be just like her.

"Sorrow is better than laughter, because a sad face is good for the heart. The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning, but the heart of fools is in the house of pleasure" (Ecclesiastes 7:3-4, NIV).

Here's the thing I’m realizing: I don't get the chance at an eternally significant story if I can't learn to respond in choosing Jesus while facing the pain and discomfort of today.

We get less and less Spirit led happenstance if we keep choosing comfort in unnatural resources for our soul then the super-natural presence of the Living God. If we want to experience soul-hope when the heart's sick then we must commit to ditching everything that helps us escape the discomfort of our countenance and choose to walk in the light.

And be there, IN IT.
He won't show up when YOU want Him too, because He's already there.

Unmet expectations? Trust in the One who created your heart.
Rejection? Believe God works all things for the good to those that love Him.
Disappointment? Choose light while walking in darkness.
Failure? Pray. Seek. Knock. Do it over and over again.

Let’s watch what happens to our stories when we allow the Holy Spirit to (work) and (move) and (change) our hard circumstances to a living, breathing testimony of hope. Because we are courageous enough to choose Jesus today, and tomorrow, and the day after that.

When we find ourselves in the hallways of anger and the shadows of doubt, may our response be to call upon the Lord and use our collective voice as candles to blot out evil. Because we are His workmanship, created for good things and all the powers of hell cannot and will-not overcome. Because it-is-finished.

Friends, we have GOT to learn not to be afraid of the dark and the heartburn that comes with it. We have to believe when we sit there, IN IT, and pray:

"God, this sucks. But, I choose you. I choose you Jesus and I choose your presence, Holy Spirit. Come and help. I believe you love me and you have a plan for my life. I know you need my cooperation. I choose you today, because you chose me that day on the cross."

If anyone knows pain, rejection, hurt, abuse and neglect, it's the God who took our sin and made it His to bear. Jesus died so that we might live.

Anchor your hope in a God that takes your shakiness in choosing Him and changes into a testimony of fire, ablaze for His glory and His cause; immovable. Because He will wipe away every tear.

*Photo by Josh Boot on Unsplash

by Jennifer Kelly on June 29th, 2017

Discovery Park sits on a hill nestled next to the Rockies. Sloping in such a way to welcome and cradle children to come and play. The sun carries no prejudice, it reflects the same loving warmth off auburn, gold and ebony strands of hair alike; while the breeze whispers songs of cool relief. Both working in unison to create an atmosphere to stay ... play.

I sit and watch two adolescent boys play chess and figure out their next move. 
"CHECK" and laughter ensues through glasses and overzealous emotions stuffed in boys that are learning to become men.

Simultaneously, a tiny little girl appears from behind the table in diapers. Her mind works faster than her legs, and almost topples over while waddling to the slide. All of a sudden, she stops. Realizing the depth and height of the slide is much larger than her small frame. Her discerning stare immediately turns to look for dad, who only encourages bravery and safety all at the same time.

My eyes shift to the cascading mountains, where the clouds act as magnificent sheer curtains all throughout the range. The clouds somehow highlight the depth and majesty of the Rocky mountains in just the right way. Spots of snow still stick to mountain peeks, just a handful of miles away.

I recently sat through a lecture at Denver Seminary by Dr. Payne. He spoke with knowledge, excitement and grace about the sheer wonder of Creation. How goodness, beauty, elegance and artistry were all a part of the "sheer un-necessity of Creation". To stop and think of Creation as liturgy. Dr. Payne also suggested that Evangelical Christianity sometimes runs the risk of starting the theology of grace in the wrong place. 

The Fall of humanity. The introduction of sin, disobedience, guilt and shame all recorded in Genesis chapter 3.

As I sit and bask in the environment of nature, I wonder if the Garden of Eden reflected elements like this park nestled in the hills. Where purple daisies dance with the wind and birds sing. 

I scan my notes from Dr. Payne's lecture and realize I don't take time to reflect on the goodness of God in terms of (​בָּרָא) bara, the Hebrew word of divine activity. Of a Triune God who called a created world into being. I start to think that maybe Dr. Payne is right? That a good theology of grace is understanding that grace started in Creation. 

My two girls finish with climbing ropes and decide to play with water and sand. The same water and dirt God called into being. I wonder if He thought of all these children, playing in the park on a hill. Skipping through streams, building sand castles, climbing, laughing ... being.

We do start at sin most of the time don't we?
Too often, grace comes after the fact ...

You have a problem.
You are a problem.
The sin nature that exists inside of you is a problem (and one that we underestimate).

But our fallenness is not the most fundamental thing about us.

There's two chapters that exist before Genesis 3. And we are told that God made us good - very good.

I think about a good Theology of Creation and I want to go around to every, single child at the park and start the narrative of their stories at the right beginning. In Genesis chapter 1 & 2.

I want to tell them that God "bara" them.
He divinely and lovingly created them.

I want to tell all the kiddos that the mountains and water and sand were created with them in mind. That they are unique and loved and made in the "imago dei" (the image of their heavenly Father).

That such a time is this in the mind of a Triune God that spoke the world into being - and this park on a hill.

Yes, we have a problem. And sin will be the struggle for your eternal soul while on this earth, but grace was there before it all.

To think of grace only after the problem is to not understand the goodness of God. We focus on the culmination of grace, the part of the narrative that came after the Fall. We witness a Triune God willing to do whatever it takes to bring back His creation.

Don't you see? Grace didn't come after you messed up. Grace was a part of God's nature from the beginning. When He made the stars to sparkle in the night. When He created temperature and time and space. Grace ran through the breath and blood of the very first man formed from dust - even though God knew what would happen in Genesis 3. God didn't need to do any of it. The sheer wonder of Creation is because He delighted to.

That's Creation as liturgy.

Sin and brokenness and the devastation of death are real and raw. We are still in-between grace, dealing with the ramifications of a fallen world before Christ's return. But don't start there. Go back to the beginning ...

Go sit outside and listen for the still small voice that whispers in the wind and invites you to play.

Know where the narrative of your story starts.
In the goodness and love and grace of a Triune God that delights in you.

​*Photo by Robert Lukeman on Unsplash

by Jennifer Kelly on April 20th, 2017

​I'm still chipping away at odd jobs around this old 1960's brick house. The one my husband and I bought last November. My last note was all about God's providence and what lies in shadows, but it's still a work in progress.

Since then, I've decided to tackle the back yard and put in a vegetable garden. Never-mind that our hallway bathroom is half-way demolished and there is no trim throughout the whole of the house. The downstairs is in-between a full remodel and I have drawers and cabinets scattered on the floor that need painting; but His voice calls me to the back yard.

"Today, if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts" Hebrews 4:7b (NIV).

Every, single part of my life has begun but remains unfinished ... just like this house.
Inside and outside.

I go and grab my pink gardening gloves from Walmart. I find a shovel in the garage and head to the very back corner of the yard. I'm really not sure what I'm doing, but I start digging.

"Therefore God again set a certain day, calling it Today..." Hebrews 4:7a (NIV).

Jesus sure is interested in us hearing His voice Today. But I'm scrambling around the inside and outside of this house needing it to be fixed. To be finished. I’m pretty sure I’m plumb crazy to start another project outside, but I also know it’s exactly where He's calling me to be. Following Jesus entails going places you never expect to be.

Friends, I am no gardener. I know how to grow and keep plants alive like I know how to put this 1960's brick ranch house back together again. But I like to believe I'm amenable, so I plow my shovel into the hard dirt and lift a weed. I pick it up and toss it in the trash. Hours go by and I've somehow successfully shoveled crabgrass, dandelions and weeds into 6 large, black trash-bags from Walmart. After hours of back-breaking work, I now have remnants of a small patch of weed-free dirt. 

Funny, it looked better in my mind than it does in front of me in real time.
Doesn't is usually though?

Grabbing my weed-filled trash bags one at a time, I slowly move them to the side of the house. They are so much heavier than I thought they would be, but I've learned that all loads that need lifting usually are. I place them along the side of the house with all the other trash I seem to be collecting these days.

I know this 1960's brick house was a gift from God. It just doesn't seem to be on hard days. What if we end up like those other horrible renovation stories of houses beyond repair? What happens if the house never gets fixed up and put back together? Will our children end up despising the very place we bought to make this house our home? Will our marriage make it through all the demo, work, people, cost, time and effort that is required? What if we end up being upside down? What if, what if, what if ...

I track dirt from my shoes as I make my way inside through the back doors of our home. Instantly, I chastise myself for not taking them off at the backdoor before entering. Where is my brain sometimes? I wash my hands with the faucet that shakes if you don't turn it on just right — yet another item to fix. I grab some much needed cold water and sit down at our dining room table.

I grab my Bible and take a drink of water.
It dawns on me that both elements are needed to sustain daily life.
I'm just better about drinking the liquid kind He made, then the Word kind He spoke.

​Do you know what happens if you listen to Jesus' voice and believe?
You enter into His rest.

"There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God's rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from His. Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest ..." Hebrews 4:10-11a (NIV).

"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light" Matthew 11:28-30 (NIV).

Days later, I go and plant my vegetables that I've grown from seeds. I bought special soil from the store and did a lot of watching on YouTube. I left the lights on in my house at certain times and watered my little seeds intently and carefully. I watched them sprout like I've watched my babies grow. All of a sudden I've got tomatoes, bell peppers and banana peppers. It's why I cleared out a small corner of my back yard (hence the 6 bags of weeds) and replaced it with organic gardening soil. Now that I've transplanted my veggie plants from seedlings to the outside, I plant some strawberry plants my daughter begged for from the store and throw some carrot seeds out there as well. What was once so covered with rocks and weeds, now (Lord willing) will produce some crops. 

I read Jesus' teaching about the farmer who planted seeds on his land. Some of the seeds got eaten by birds, other seeds sprouted, but quickly died off from the lack of soil. Some seeds barely grew before they were scorched by the sun and others were choked out by thorns and weeds.

The seeds that did grow and produce a crop were those with good soil and roots.
The crop comes after the work.

I've learned it takes time to produce good soil. A shovel (smart people use a tiller, but I'm slow and old-school), sweat, manure, time, patience and sweet-tea. I love that all good soil has crap in it, because we all have crap in our lives and Jesus uses it anyway. It's part of the story. 

Some of my vegetable plants have been scorched by the sun because I didn't provide proper timely exposure from moving them from the inside to the outside my house. Some seeds have been picked up by birds and squirrels, and some have been broken by the wind. But, I've still got some plants that are living because of good, prepared soil and roots that have grown down deep.

And then I get it.

Trusting Jesus is not only about hearing His voice (good soil), but believing in it too (our root system). 

"For we also have had the gospel preached to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard did not combine it with faith" Hebrews 4:2 (NIV).

Today, Jesus was calling me to not only hear Him, but receive Him in faith ...
That’s how we enter into rest.

I dust my hands off and take a picture of my garden. It's a work in progress and unfinished, but so is everything else in my life. I go back inside, remembering to take off my shoes before entering this time and sit down at the table to give thanks. Thanks to a Father who's always so good to me and patient with me.

Friends, I’m really good at hearing and reading about God (from His Word, His people, and all sorts of different ways), but I find that most days, believing who He is and what He claims to be and do (in the crap) is the hard part.

His soil is always good, it’s my root system that lacks the depth it needs to live and produce good fruit.

Anne Voskamp wrote in The Broken Way, “Can I believe in God, in Jesus, in a way that I know Jesus believes in me? Maybe it isn’t enough to believe in Jesus – maybe I have to believe that Jesus believes enough in me to choose me. If Christ has chosen me, can He not believe in me? Can I believe Jesus believes in me? And what do I know about living as if He does believe in me?

Today, I’m choosing to listen and believe. Believe that God does make all things new even with the crap. That growth and maturity and change happen through the grace and mercy of the Holy Spirit. That there is life after death; not only in this life but the one to come.

Most importantly, that God is good and faithful to finish all the unfinished parts in me and my home. Especially on the hard days.

by Jennifer Kelly on April 6th, 2017

Somewhere in-between 34, I got a little stuck ... and my husband and I bought a home.

A 1960's, red brick house on Reed Street. Triangular, wooden beams barge overhead and meet together to form a peak as you walk onto the front porch and through the entryway. Although the main living area is open, your eyes are immediately drawn to the light flooding in from the windows like a waterfall. The brightness from the sun is blinding at first, but allowing time for your eyes to settle in and adjust brings clarity — like most things in life.

Dallas Willard once wrote that, "The very light that makes it possible for us to see may also dazzle our eyes to the clearest of realities and make it impossible for us to see what lies in a shadow".

As you steady your gaze and look beyond the patio and into the back yard, the overgrown vines, bushes and trees take you by surprise. Wild things grow in unnatural ways when not taken care of and pruned appropriately.

But then you'll notice a curious, black lamppost. I imagine the friendly light has shared quite a few days with friends and creatures alike. It’s aged, and a bit tired and worn from its time under the sun. The lamppost reminded me of the very same one that greeted Lucy outside the wardrobe when she entered Narnia for the first time. 

I knew this house was the 'one' as soon as we walked through it. Kaytlin laid claim to the brown and Pepto-Bismol colored bedroom and Mike looked at me with those eyes that said, "We can make this work". There were multiple offers within 24 hours of the red-brick house on Reed Street going on the market. With a fantastic realtor, letter, offer and a prayer, our hope became a reality in a relatively short amount of time.

Was this house the answer to my feelings of anxiety? 

We packed up and started our relocation process. It's strange and a bit eerie to move into a house that whispers stories of souls walking through the hallways. Especially from a neglected home in need of love. 

We move so quickly, don't we? My perpetual stuckness at 34 transfixed to rebuilding and making a home for our family, but the anxiety loomed. Whatever was troubling me, I buried and got to work on my new found home and quit writing.

My uneasiness lowered a bit with so much to do. Whatever unresolved issues were still there got swept up in the noise — but whispers inside my head still loomed. Things remained under the surface of my heart, but I knew God was trying to teach me something.

Both my heart and house exhibited needs of deep restoration in shadows.

Middle-age adulthood is not always what it’s cracked up to be, but neither is remodeling a 1960's brick ranch house. Lots of mold, repairs, patches, leaks, overgrown weeds in the front and back yard, and some walls that need tearing down. We tore down mirrors, ripped up carpet, refinished hardwood floors and the basement flooded. There were pipes and electrical wires and real repairs that needed time, attention, money and sweat. 

​I had no idea how much damage and cost can occur to a neglected house after decades of disregard. I'm not talking cosmetic. The deep-down structural and behind the scenes major restoration processes that needs to occur to ensure sustainable, healthy and enjoyable living.

I started demoing everything around me. Literally. The tile and the inside of my heart. The faux marble that needed to come out of the bathroom and the wrong thoughts I had circling inside my head. The more I worked on the house, the more I discovered what needed to be done — both inside my soul and home. The house on Reed Street was simply a tangible picture God used to gnaw at the inside of me. The more work I did on my home, the more frustrated I grew. I knew God was trying to get my attention, I just chose to ignore it for a while.

When matters of the soul are ignored for other pursuits (no matter good or evil) what was once enjoyable becomes a burden over time, until what really needs to be dealt with is faced.

Somewhere at 34, I started listening to old voices inside my heart and mind that said I wasn't enough ...

Good enough.
Fast enough.
Productive enough.
Mom enough.
Wife enough.
Life enough.
Woman enough.
Redeemed enough.

I think sometimes I wish my relationship with the Triune God would magically speak, do, and repair everything to bright and shiny Jen. But the truth is: discipleship is a life-long process of following, remaining, forgiving, redeeming and reconciliation — that needs to happen every day. Sanctification doesn't happen overnight. Thank God for time and grace to heal and mend; even the most hidden things found in shadows. Most cosmetic issues are easy to fix in the early days, but true restoration takes time, perseverance, hard work and sweat. The longer we follow Jesus, the more rooms in our heart we find that need remodeling. 

St. Teresa of Avila wrote a book called The Interior Castle, comparing our soul to that of a great castle. Early on she tells us to, "Remember, this castle has many dwellings: some above and some below. Others to either side. At the center is the most important dwelling of them all where the most secret things unfold between the soul and her Beloved".

The right materials and true elements that are needed for a house to fully function properly and provide safety and shelter is the same fundamental truth for our minds, hearts, bodies and souls. It cannot be a lofty idea alone for a house to have a solid foundation. Someone actually has to go in there and design, purchase, dig, build, pour and work. It's the same with us. Faith cannot be a lofty idea by itself to work. We are called to go, fight, run, and work it out with fear and trembling.

I’m learning that emotions provide honest red flags, much like a leaking faucet. Both are real and important, but they cannot be left alone to deal with our responses to life. Sure, we can hide them, or act as if they aren't there, but overtime we will either have a massive flood on our hands or a burst in our pipes somewhere. Just like my house on Reed Street.

The most secret places of our soul need light and our response to the shadows has to be truth, not emotions. Allow yourself time to settle in and focus, then get to work. Lean into the uncomfortable smell of lies and mold, rip it out, and replace it with truth. The living, central truths that tells you:

I am a child of God (Galatians 3:26-29; 1John 3:1)
I am a chosen friend of Jesus (John 15:14-16)
I am a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17-19)
I am wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14)
I am created for God's glory (Isaiah 43:7)
I am victorious in Christ Jesus (1 Corinthians 15:57)
Jesus is more than enough.

I know these words are as old as time, nevertheless, they are fundamental proclamations that have to become the orientation of your heart and mind. Eventually habitual, where you choose to operate from — no matter how long you've been following Jesus. 

The house on Reed Street is starting to look good. I'm not overwhelmed as to what lies in the shadows nor do I feel unsettled, but I have a notion my sudden lack of frustration has nothing to do with the ongoing renovation of my house as it does with the countenance of my heart. There's still much work to be done.

I think Satan likes to whisper some of the same lies slowly over time, dripping them over and over again like a leaky faucet. Suddenly we’re faced with a disaster that started somewhere in the shadows. But Jesus’ light is there to aid in exposing the darkness. We need but look and respond with the Truth He’s already supplied — and make sure it keeps pouring in every day.

Now, after the fact, I believe trials of transition and uncertainty accompanied with feelings of hopelessness can turn into a blessing or curse. A gift of grace when worked with intention and resolve or a stumbling block when abandoned and left to despair. Two truths that are applicable to remodeling old homes and souls. Both take time.

Be brave; wrestle with what lies in the shadows. God is faithful.

"The eternal, holy and unfathomable goodness of God does not allow us to wander in darkness, but shows us the way of salvation ... This I have seen in others as well as in myself."  Constantine

by Jennifer Kelly on September 7th, 2016

The orientation of autumn is here.  

We are in the cusp. Where the end of summer packs up all it's favorite memories and starts to pass things over to fall.

Children are heading back to school, all bright-eyed with anticipation. Parents are busy filling their school year calendars: attending, planning, doing ... while the breath, the sweet ease that is summertime still looms. The scenes of rest, family and food are now savored only in an exhale. Too fond to be gone, too close by to let go. 

And yet we do.

Fall holds new friendships, memories, colors and flavors. Truly, the meeting place of summer and fall is bittersweet. We say another goodbye to sand and sun and slow. The windows stay open a bit longer, letting the breeze and smell of leaves welcome us in. Scenes of football and pumpkin re-enter our lives with anticipation and ease. Routine and work pick itself back up, in-no-time-at-all.

The changing of seasons is enchanting, especially the transition to autumn.
Where blues and purple turn to browns and gold.
It is the evolution of time expressed through nature that mystifies.
Like God knew you needed time to say "goodbye,” all the while saying "hello.”
A stringed progression; it is essential, but not too fast and not too slow.

It's the passing of seasons that reminds me so much of God's never-ending work in all of us. The reminder of a sacrifice made and the promise to come. The freedom found in Christ moving. The slow and subtle reminder that this will not last forever, but the Kingdom of God will.

I believe wholeheartedly that we have our own seasons.
When the evolution of our faith gets expressed through time it enlightens.
And still God knows that we need time to say "goodbye,” all the while saying "hello.”
A threaded progression; it is overlapping, but not too fast and not too slow.

I find myself in the orientation of a new autumn. Navigating working full time for a nonprofit after three years of being a stay at home mom. Smelling my children’s hair as I hug them off to school. Learning new names, responsibilities and the halls around the office. Trying to determine and understand what "balance" means for my family and I. If there is such a thing? I think in the cusp, there is no such thing.

My babies are no longer kindergarten and under. I've been married for over 10 years now. Whoa. Transition is prickly and sweet. Change is inevitable. Dreams seem realized, yet a chapter is closing. Through all of it, I see the progression of my relationship with Jesus that has brought me here. Overlapping and essential, but not too fast and not too slow.

During whatever transition you find yourself going through. Whatever time of life you find yourself in. If you're sipping on flavors of pumpkin, wiping away salt-watered tears of weariness or resting below the breeze that now needs a blanket, think of this...

It is only for a season.

Seasons are the stringed progressions; essential, but not too fast or too slow.
Eternity is the threaded progression; overlapping, but not too fast and not too slow.

There will be a new one sooner than you think.
Be patient + Stay the course + Heaven will come

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