Am I Hipster Yet?

My housemate Krysia and I have had coffee dates every semester since school started specifically to discuss what we are expecting for the semester coming. As well as the ‘pre-semester expectations’ that we set up we have follow up meetings to see how those expectations went. I’ve had ‘themes’ and sentences impressed on my heart for the semesters that have tied with different scriptures that have carried me through the very crazy seasons that emerge at Hillsong College.

At the end of last semester as I was thinking about what I wanted for this semester it wasn’t an opportunity or to even grow in a particular area of college or church leadership. I simply want to know G-d more this semester than I have in a while. I want to focus on the Word like I haven’t in a while and spend time learning about the Lord. The songwriting and lectures and learning curves will happen and somehow everything will get done this semester that needs to, but my desire is more Jesus and more of the Word in my heart. 

On a recent trip home for my brothers wedding I inherited my dads Nikon camera. Short of having another ‘Daddy teach me’ blog I will say that trying to figure out how to use it today has made me realise a few things:

  1. Learning new things, and more than that, learning ALL about new things involves more reaching out to people who know more than it does you trying to just guess. 
         By this I mean, I went ham on Youtube tutorials for this specific model of Nikon and watched all the things. I didn’t rely on and can’t rely on myself and my thoughts on how the camera should work in order to take the best pictures but I SHOULD research and see how people have used it and how they’ve best figured out to take those classic hipster shots that get so popular on Instagram (shameless plug). But really, learning is best done in community and I don’t see how that differs to learning about G-d. We should be discussing what passages mean to us and the best that we understand how it applies to whom it was addressed to and to us. We should be reading and researching what the scriptures are actually saying and we should be giving them a chance to say it. 
  2. Learning involves time – but the learning goes quicker if you focus your time. 
    I’m the QUEEN at multitasking… and by multitasking I mean today I did laundry, watched youtube, did make up on half my face, finished my laundry and then washed my face, straightened 1/3 of my hair before I realized I didn’t like the texture of my hair so I washed it then redid the whole thing and blogged. I also took one photo I was proud of but it was with my iPhone. I tend to get bored halfway through whatever I am doing so it sometimes takes me a while.In other, more related words, sometimes getting to know someone or something intimately involves time given up to focus JUST on that thing or person. This is more just a reminder for myself of what is required for my expectations
  3. I would love to have a number 3 because 3 points is good but I’ve really said what I wanted to.

Sometimes I don’t know why I post stuff on my blog that just belongs in my journal.

Thank you if you’ve read this – and if you will just pray that I focus and get what I’m expecting this semester. Love you all.


“Z Best Is Yet 2 Come”

So, I’ve been reading the Bible lately as previously stated in my last blog. I’ve finished Exodus and started reading all the introductory information on Leviticus (the avoided book) which is extremely helpful in creating expectation on a previously perceived “boring book”.

Exodus has been helpful in opening my eyes to more of the details of our story as Christians. For example, you have ‘The Exodus’ (the exit or leaving) of the children if Israel out of the land of Egypt and of slavery. THE PASSOVER – which I couldn’t write enough about – full of symbolism and justice that makes me cry when I think about it. The Israelites were to take a pure, spotless lamb once a year for their passover feast and slaughter it and place the blood of the lamb over their doorposts to be safe from the judgement of G-d. GUYS. Jesus, our pure and spotless lamb spilled his blood over that tree at Calvary to forever cover the price of our sins so that judgement would be replaced with mercy in our lives.
I cry. I weep. I write blogs about it. 

The Law was given to Moses at Mt. Sinai and then immediately broken (literally and literally) by the people sinning downstairs and when Moses threw the tablets to the ground in a hissy fit of justice-rage. But, Moses was given reminders of the covenant promise of G-d redeeming His people and Moses reminded G-d of His own promises as well. We see redemption over and over in this narrative.

The BEAUTIFUL and precise instructions were given to our main man Moses for the construction of the Tabernacle (The Holy meeting tent that the Lord decided to dwell in so that He could be with the children of Israel and that they could worship Him in). Peoples hearts were overwhelmed with gratitude and generosity and began to give to the building of the temple to where they had far more than they needed. The Lord showed his compassion to this group of people by sending His Spirit (end of chapter 35) to equip His people with SKILL to complete the building of the tabernacle.

I find it reassuring to know that the Lord doesn’t always EQUIP the CALLED but He equips those in the line of His COMMANDS. We find two men here in chapter 36, Bezalel and Oholiab, along with others in ‘whom the Lord put skill and intelligence to know how to do any work in the construction of the sanctuary… in accordance with all that the Lord has commanded’ (v.1 ish). We see no reference to the Lord speaking directly to them and telling them that they are ordained to build this sanctuary… We just see them in the path of a need that the Lord was going to accomplish. By being willing to help with whatever, they were equipped by the Holy Spirit to be useful.

G-d I want to be in line of your commands. I don’t have to be ‘called’ but I do need to be available and I trust that in my availability and being where You are that You’ll equip me for whatever YOU have commanded on the earth.

After all of this is said and done in Exodus it leaves me with such a reassured ease as I try and read Leviticus. You see, I know the end of the story and the completion of the prophecies in the New Testament. I know of the New Covenant and our immediate access to G-d and the lack of all animal sacrifices I’ve ever had to perform in my life. I can look at the Israelites wandering the desert and think, “The best is yet to come! Just hold on and keep believing!”

This all ended up rolling through my head as I made my way downstairs
to see our house sign say “Z Best Is Yet 2 Come”.

I think G-d often smiles at me, I feel it when I’m laughing at myself after ‘ah-ha’ moments come and I realise how blind I am without the guidance and revelation of the Spirit. I was reminded of the expectation I’m bringing to Hillsong Conference. I was reminded of MY story with Him and how much I’ve grown in the last 5 years. I was reminded of all the prayers that I’ve prayed and still pray and the ones I’ve forgotten that I asked for. I think G-d smiled at me and reminded ME that The BEST is YET to come…
I can look at the past all day and mentally help those people in hardship and tell them, “Wait, your story isn’t over” but in looking back and reflecting I can sometimes forget that the Lord is looking at me saying the same thing.

Moving into Hillsong Conference ISN’T same ol’ same ol’. Starting another semester with a whole flock of new students isn’t same ol’ same ol’. Each and every service and chapel isn’t the same… it’s progressively THE BEST.

Pastor Brian Houston coined that phrase for our church but I’m just starting to REALLY GET IT. It doesn’t matter if your last week was crap or the best thing ever. It doesn’t matter if you’re still sitting in emotional slavery waiting on deliverance or you were just given everything you’ve been asking and praying for. THE BEST is still to come.

Hillsong Conference is another opportunity that we as college students have to refresh and serve our hearts out – I pray that our expectation is heightened and that we follow where we feel the Spirit is leading. I pray that we end up in the path of the commands of G-d and even if we don’t feel called that we begin to accept the equipping of the Spirit and move forward knowing we have what it takes to change something. I pray that no matter how difficult it is, or how tired we become that we don’t lose sight of the BEST that is still coming. I pray that no matter how amazing and life-changing it is for us that we realise that there IS STILL more.

Many of those reading this aren’t college students here in Sydney, Australia and to those I pray that your jobs come through – I pray your children come back to Christ or find Him for the first time – I pray that you are set free from emotional bondage of an abusive partner – I pray that you see a little bit more hope in your situation but also that you know that even in the beautiful times, the birth of your children, the promotion at work, the marriage of your best friends… that there is STILL more.

Thank G-d for hindsight and THANK G-D that I don’t know everything.

The Exodus and Leviticus links you find in this blog are from guys called
‘The Bible Project’ – They summarise the books of the bible along with explaining other key topics in a comic sort of way that keeps us creative types entertained.
Check them out.

Scrabit Valentines

Please enjoy this #ThinkBackThursday, it’s long enough 🙂

I had the opportunity of learning how to co-write a song with a 2nd semester student the other day. It was awesome (for lack of a better word, I used all my good ones in the song). One of the lines we came up with being, “The hardest place to be is on an empty page”; which for any artist: If you’re a writer, a painter, a dancer or a songwriter, this is one of the truest statements that there is. Unless you and G-d have some ridiculous thing worked out and you just flow 24/7 in the gifts of creativity. To you I say, I’m way jealousI’m working on that.

All of that to say, I’ve been here for about three weeks and written every day, but sharing has gotten significantly harder. The first week was full of temporary housing, moving, getting settled in, and not having WiFi. So that was legitimately part of it, however, another large part is that G-d is uprooting crap that I don’t WANT to share. If I admit it out loud (or on paper, or at the internet) to you all then it becomes a real issue with real accountability that I have to address. What sucks is that G-d has laid it on my heart to share my story. Be real with people, open up and love people as I accept unconditional love that I used to not allow myself to feel. I’ve been taught in public speaking, and singing, and even conversations to not preface or disclaim things and I try really hard to keep to that. But I clearly didn’t listen this time. Lets add that to the list of things I’m working on.

It’s Valentines Day here in Aussie Land, which in all reality doesn’t matter at all. I plan on finding a beach today and getting golden brown and piddling around the city. The only significance of today is that I just finished a book on Prophecy and a heavy portion of the book spoke on LOVE. So today I woke up and read 1 Corinthians 12-14 as the book suggested doing for every day of the rest of your life and I began to realize just how poorly I love. A large struggle here at Hillsong [so far (for me)] has been my wonderful insecurity and issue of comparison. Hillsong College doesn’t cultivate or feed this insecurity, in fact I think I’ve heard something in every sermon, chapel, lecture, and conversation about how we need to NOT be comparing ourselves.

We are the BODY OF CHRIST and to each of us has been given the ‘manifestation of the Spirit for the common good’.

G-d puts us in the places HE willed us to be in, with the talents HE set in us, and the understanding HE taught us, with the stories HE will use if we let Him. And sometimes all of that sucks (this is a fragment sentence because I have nothing else to say about it). When you lean on your understanding and your view it’s rough to believe you’re a significant person in the kingdom. You might be a finger in the body, but fingers are pretty boring until you attach them to the hand and link them to the heart and the brain, and then through them all working together create a melody on the piano, or a letter to an old friend, or a story that will change someone’s life.

“But in fact G-d has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as He wanted them to be.”
1 Corinthians 12:18

– I don’t have to try and convince myself that I’m supposed to be here, now, with the level of talent or anointing I have – G-d has placed me where He willed me to be. I’m not a mistake; I’m not out of place. No one else here can be me. His Word tells me so. Even on the days I don’t believe in myself, I have to believe His Word is true or I really have nothing and no reason to be here.

Hmmm, so love.

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails… And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.”
1 Corinthians 13:4-8a; 4:13

Can we go real talk without you getting uncomfortable? No? Probably not, that’s fine you don’t have to ‘like’ this post. Do you have any idea how long I’ve avoided and not liked this portion of scripture? My divorce was final August 2012 so… probably about 4 months BEFORE that. I have let there be a hold over my heart and life because I have accepted the ties around portions of scripture and what was promised to me, and broken. G-d didn’t do that. HE didn’t abandon me, He always hoped in me, He ALWAYS persisted after me. He is good, He is G-d, He is Holy. Having said that I realized that through all this mess and all the ties I let hold me I was killing my ability to ACCEPT love… How the heck do I expect to give love if I can’t accept it? I am a BAD lover. I have the biggest issue in the world with rejoicing in truth, I need to work on rejoicing over people who are ahead of me in life. I need to stop being intimidated by them and thinking I will never be like them. Chances are, I WONT BE LIKE THEM BECAUSE G-D CREATED ME TO BE ME.

I have so much room to grow in this area. I have so much I need to start believing about me so that I can in turn pour it out into believing in others. What is terrible is that it’s all grown out of fear, pride and insecurity. Those are ugly, I want to be pretty inside and out. Momma always said I was… I want to believe I am. But dang, I need G-d’s help. Only He knows how stubborn I am and how far down He is going to have to dig to get it all out. And I have been praying since I got here that He would take it all out. G-d, teach me how to love. Show me the moments when I am very wrong. Guide me in what You need me to do and above all – change my heart to beat more in line with Yours. “Get rid of it all G-d, make my heart true. Get rid of it all G-d and make me more like You. Just take it all Lord, bind me to You. With one glance of my heart G-d, I’m falling in love with You.”

I could write a ton more about all this but I’m trying to keep it as short as your attention span. It might not ever be perfect but I DO love you all with all I know how, I am praying that it becomes more pure and closer to what it love really looks like. I am expecting a lot of miracles and heart changes for the women I live with and the people I’m going to school with, and me. I could use prayer. You all are wonderful.

“Write your heart out”… seriously, get the mess that is inside of you out. There is healing, there is encouragement, there is truth to be spoken over you, there is accountability you (I) desperately need. You don’t have to fight thoughts alone.

 Happy Valentines Day

Sucky Sound Systems, Surprising Stories, and Skepticism

G-d is actually beautiful.

I was thinking this morning about how doing #ThinkBackThursday is getting more challenging the longer I do it. It’s weird – I’ve used the majority of my old posts from Facebook (be my friend! If you mention my blog you get a 3% discount on being my friend!) and I was running out of material. I was about to start creeping through my 10 year old journal but, no one REALLY wants to read who I was crushing on at 14.

Lo and behold, I found a post from October 2010 that I don’t recall ever stumbling over in this last year. And wouldn’t you know it… it’s in perfect timing with what I NEEDED to hear this week.

I write for me.  I publish for accountability. I pray that somehow in the middle it might be the encouragement, challenge, blessing or honesty you need. I truly could never say ‘thank you’ enough if you pray for, support me or have been apart of reading my stories. Please enjoy this #ThinkBackThursday


Thursday we had a worship night at church and all was going well until Jesse and I here a loud pop in the monitors in front of us. Jesse was roughly 4 feet away from me so I casually and in the full attitude of worship lean over and ask if he can hear Kevin anymore or the piano.


You see, when we cannot hear Kevin that’s a bad thing. While I have attempted to train myself to just know what key we’re in and sing it in tune the whole way- there is still comfort in being able to hear the piano and KNOW you’re in the same key.

I couldn’t get the attention of our wonderful sound man Steve (thanks for the photo Steven B.) without making a scene so I felt pretty stuck, and then suddenly, the monitor popped back on.

This actually was wonderful.

Unfortunately, our sound system didn’t like leaving people feeling happy and fuzzy so again, the sound went out. I wasn’t sure what to do, there wasn’t much I could do, so instead I just prayed. If I remember correctly it was something like, “G-d, this might be a silly request but… I don’t want to create a distraction with not being able to hear correctly so if at all possible could You somehow make the monitor start working? I mean, I’ll still love You and do my best either way… it’d just be nice”

I felt in that moment like He was legitimately asking me if I’d be surprised if He did, He reminded me of the scripture in James 1.6-7 about coming to G-d with our requests, “Ask boldly, believingly, without a second thought. People who “worry their prayers” are like wind-whipped waves. Don’t think you’re going to get anything from the Master that way…” I felt like He was asking me if I was going to truly believe that He could; if I was going to believe that He would answer something so – in my mind – trivial. In an honest answer back to G-d I said, “I’m not sure.” I couldn’t tell Him that I w o u l d n ’ t be surprised but I remember thinking, “G-d, I don’t honestly know if I will be surprised, I just know that You can”.

((Before I completed my thought the monitor came back on. I smiled.

I don’t know what it was in my heart that shifted to where I just decided to believe. I still don’t understand why I can’t live there constantly. Where I ask G-d without doubt and know that He’ll answer if it’s His will. I’m ok admitting that in my almost 20-year-old mind I still struggle with trying to figure out why it seems G-d answers some prayers right away and on some He waits. All I know is to trust that His word and promise to me are true. And that I must be patient in not understanding because HE knows whats up.

I’m not perfect. I don’t have everything figured out. I’m learning. I’m accepting when I can’t do things alone. I’m committed to the only thing that has never let me down.

I’m His and that’s all I need.

The Gift that Keeps on Giving

It’s just so good to remember HOW good G-d is. The beauty of who He is can be revealed in his many gifts that He blesses us with. I’m so thankful for His grace everyday.

Please enjoy this #ThinkBackThursday


“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of G-d – not by works, so that no one can boast.”

Ephesians 2.8-9

Birthday gifts are funny things; we receive them in a celebration of the day we were born. They aren’t given to return favors but almost as a, “congratulations, you didn’t die this year!”. We didn’t earn them nor do we by any means deserve them. This is the case with most any gifts we received.

Our salvation is a gift from G-d. Of all things to be ill-deserving of, He chose to give us eternal life and in that life all of our mistakes (the accidents and purposely rebellious things) are covered by grace. I don’t understand a LOT of things – “I don’t know” comes out of my mouth and is written by my pen more times than I could recall.

But how I understand grace is this: I’m alive today.

Despite going from a devotion yesterday morning straight to driving and bickering at all the morons who drive with less skill than I do, despite forgetting what I even read yesterday or sleeping through my alarm and missing Sunday school – I’m here and I’m given this moment to praise my King. I’m given this gift of salvation and (dare I say) “insight” into the kingdom that I might know the hope to which G-d has called me, the riches of His glory and His great power (Eph. 1.18-19)

If you take Christ and His sacrifice out of the equation, it’s likely that ink would have never filled this page. I’d never have been born, and my parents might not have met. Me alone without G-d leaves me dead in sin (Eph. 2.1) – a useless bag of gross that people should light on fire and leave on a porch somewhere.

Thinking of my life without G-d is awful.

LORD, Thank You for Salvation and Grace. Help me to fully realize how dependent I am on You and remind me daily of where I’d be without You. Your grace is a beautiful thing and though I don’t see or understand fully I am so grateful for this gift. Forgive me for all the time I waste and for how sinfully forgetful I am. Help me remember to reflect on and praise Your name and blessings.

I don’t understand why He chose a sinful man to pour all of this out on but He did; probably because He is just THAT wise. He not only handles our shortcomings but He can make them look like they were always in “The Plan”. He teaches us through our trials not around them.

“In Him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of Him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of His will.”

Ephesians 1.11

Who has two mighty hands and can work out EVERYTHING in conformity with the purpose of His will?!
G-d. That guy.

Everything. G-d, Creator of the Heavens and Earth picked us all first before any other creature offered on the little league team to be apart of His great plan. Not only were we chosen but we are given this Author who has the creativity that is beyond our favorite writers, painters, inventors and kindergarten teachers meshed together. We have a G-d who can move us into something of worth – even after our days filled with mistakes –  ALL for His will. And He actually KNOWS what He is doing.


Jesus, Your Word is true. I was dead in my sin and have been offered this salvation and grace and forgiveness and I want it. I’m going to hold You to Your word. Use my life and cover my shortcomings to allow me to fit into Your will. Help me to understand the hope You’ve called me to – in that give me rest. G-d, I’m not the brightest… can You remind me how much I need You? How much others need You and let my life be of some use for Your kingdom. Cause I know it’s ONLY by You that it could.

            I love you, talk to You soon.

What I Didn’t Mean To Learn

Random comforting verse of the week: John 21:25 (NIV)

Jesus did (many) other things as well. If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written.”

I was reading Acts this last week and when I had first started and was getting into the meat of the first two chapters I found myself looking back through the verses a few times. One of the last times I came back to the beginning of Acts I had a great revelation, it’s just that the revelation wasn’t on what I was actually reading. The verse previous caught my attention from earlier in my life when I felt the need to mark underneath these words with black ink.

We find this verse at the very end of John, after he had written about all that Jesus had done in His lifetime here on earth. After the birth and journey to protect the newborn King, after the unaccounted years of being a preteen and a teenager. ((I wonder if Jesus found any girls attractive growing up? Honestly, I bet He found everyone attractive growing up, He didn’t see people when He looked at people. I have to assume He saw the image of G-d.)) We find this verse after Jesus’ adventures in carpentry and all of His time in the temple learning the Holy Scriptures. We find it after He calls the disciples and travels with them. After He feeds the crowds, heals the sick, brings the dead back to life, casts demons out, turns water into wine, sees the blind receive their sight (pun intended), the leper’s healed and restored, people comforted, women given their dignity back and many others impacted by love. We read this verse after the betrayal by one of Jesus’ companions, after He was beaten and at no point cursed those who spit on Him. We read this after He was handed over to be crucified and after He had passed away.

After He rose again, after He sent us out.

AFTER all of these things and many more it tells us that Jesus accomplished so much that if every one of them were written down we wouldn’t have room for the books of His goodness and faithfulness on this earth.

It really got me thinking, if I spent my life just writing about what He has done for ME I wouldn’t have room on the Earth to brag enough. My blog posts would be so long my mom might not even read them. The internet would break.

But, that’s slowly becoming all that I want to do. Man, if I could just sit with people and tell of His faithfulness… if I limited my story to JUST HIS FAITHFULNESS we’d still be here all day. If I spoke of nothing but His grace I would run out of breath before I got to the depth. If I only told you about His love for me you’d be as heartbroken as I am over what I’ve been given.

I suppose that’s where they come up with songs like, “I could sing of Your love forever”. Or maybe that’s how the angels and elders in heaven never could ever get sick of singing “Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord G-d Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come” (Revelation 4:8 KJV) I lately have been dreaming of the day that I get to sit before the throne and sing with them. I wonder what melody they’re singing. I wonder if everyone sings the same thing or if its a compilation of everyones individual songs. I still think whatever it is, that it’s beautiful.

This verse – along with peaking my wonder – gives me such a comfort in knowing that I can do my best for my entire life and it still won’t be enough, nor will it be too much. I can’t exhaust the name or holiness of Christ. I can’t speak or write or sing enough and even when I have filled my lifetime doing, so I can still do more. This scripture was just talking about Jesus’ life on earth, and now we have 2000+ years more of the impact that He left and what it has done for each of us. I don’t have to be weary in wondering what I will continue to write about. There is no limit to His goodness and for that I literally am eternally going to thank Him. 

((These thirty-three words have just done me in this week. Christ is eternally good. Remember that.

Me, Myself, Martha and Mary

Real Talk

It’s always Real Talk

I swear I re-write these like a billion times.

I have such a Martha heart sometimes. I don’t believe by any means that we are saved by works, or by what we accomplish but I sure keep myself busy instead of sitting at the Fathers feet sometimes. I always think it’s a novel idea to sit and listen but then struggle with feeling lazy. It’s one of the many mindset changes I’ve been praying for this semester in school… To not have the attitude of Martha who was upset when her sister wasn’t just as busy ‘doing’ as she was. I don’t want to live distracted. I couldn’t imagine that getting to the end of your life could be worse than not even realizing you didn’t live because you were busy being distracted.

I want to worship and commune with Jesus – I’m just highly distractible and move around way too much and phone way too much and mindlessly interwebs way too much.

“As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him.  She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said.  But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”

 “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”

Luke 10:38-42

I had a day at home over this week and realized how much time I had to just sit with Jesus, and I was really excited about it. I thought to myself, “dang, I can get so much reading and writing and revelating (not a real word) done today! How awesome will that be?!” and then I cleaned the kitchen, and my room, and vacuumed and watched YouTube. We all get busy either from jobs or from life but we don’t all have to get cluttered. You know, the unnecessary amounts of things that we do that aren’t entirely productive. I’ve always been like that though, too busy to think clearly. It’s slowing down and breathing that I’m not good at.

Hillsong Conferences’ theme is “Speak: We’re Listening” which couldn’t be more seasonal for me. So naturally I’m expecting a lot. But a large part of this for me is going to be learning how to sit at Jesus’ feet and take in and listen to what he is saying. I think it’s really easy to get distracted with the preparations and at that, the things that really do HAVE to get done. But what is better? What is needed?

Just one thing. 

Mary chose what was better. There is nothing else. There is no time more valuably and costly spent than time with Jesus. Not only that, but Jesus told Martha that it wouldn’t be taken away from her. All the time she used wasn’t wasted and it wasn’t going to be removed. It wasn’t a lack in her life but it was the best decision she could have made. Time with G-d can’t come back void. I believe I’ve written about that before or if I haven’t now I have. If you’ve had a RealTalkTuesday with me lately I’m sure I’ve preached that to you. It’s something I absolutely need to hold onto right now. Even when I don’t see or feel the change I need to believe it.

((Honestly, I just have a lot to learn.))

What Is In A Name?

I have a lot of pride. I got a job when I was young and worked for about 46% of my life (which is gross to think about when you’re only 24) and did my best to ‘provide’ for my wants and needs (I thought I was providing, but I know I wouldn’t be alive without my parents). I carry pride in my friendships, I hold my close friends close (and think they’re cooler than you). I carry pride in my little sister who is absolutely irreplaceable and unmatchable in competition for my affection and attention. She’s the most intelligent and beautiful and talented little person I have ever known and she gives the BEST hugs. I carry pride in my goals that I’ve set for myself, which I’m often humbled by, because lets be honest, sometimes I over schedule and don’t complete things (sometimes I suck at keeping commitments).

Lastly, I carry pride in my name. I suppose really it isn’t MY name, but it is my family name. It’s Muñoz and it means: “on a hill”; my first name [Elaina (I just rocked some of your worlds)] means: “light”

((My name means: “light on a hill”, freak yeah!))

Way to go mom and dad!

After I finalized my divorce, changing my name back was a huge deal for me. I couldn’t wait to be apart of my father’s family again. It wasn’t as if I no longer belonged when my name was different but there is something about a legal, outward label that means I am apart of something bigger than me. I wanted to be re-associated with my father and my father’s family. I wanted to belong to the family that I grew up with. Changing my name back on Facebook sent me into a small gut-dropping panic because some people didn’t even know that my ex and I had even had our first fight (I lied a lot to a lot of people between my 21st birthday and my 22nd. I was asked, “how’s married life?” enough to make my head spin) so I waited until I left for a three week holiday to Ireland to visit my best friend. It was a birthday/vacation gift to myself.

“For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will – to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.” Ephesians 1:4-5

 It’s almost as if we have this duel citizenship with our earthly families and the Kingdom family. He CHOSE us from the beginning of the world before I had a chance to screw up royally, and even knowing all the things I was going to do, HE adopted me. He looked at me and decided that I was allowed to have His name. Not only was I allowed – but also He fought for me to have His name. A name that is higher than anything and everything, that means more than “light on a hill” (Don’t get me wrong, my parents did awesome and my name is sick as). I was given a name by my heavenly Father that has power over the grave AND all of my sins. I have been given a name that looks past my talents and blessings as well as my shortcomings. He not only chose us, but it was all in accordance to His pleasure and will… what?!

He wanted to.

The name of Jesus means: Savior. It means defender, it means deliverer, it means guardian, it means hero, it means liberator, it means rescuer, and it means that I NEEDED HIM. What is in my name is a belonging to the King of Kings and the one who is over all things. My name means that I have an inheritance of eternity and authority at my right hand.

The thing is, that I actually didn’t have to go back and change my name to Muñoz again. I could have left it the way it was so that I didn’t have to go through with the process of sitting at the social security office, the DMV, all of anywhere that I had a bill to be paid, anything social media – but I CHOSE to. I had to choose to take up my name again and allow myself to realize that I belonged.

Jesus is a gentlemen. I’ve always believed that because I’ve always found it to be true in my life. He isn’t barging in and taking my heart captive by force. He is waiting to be sought out and waiting for the permission to make you apart of His family. I don’t know too much that there is to know about adoption but I know that once the child is old enough to understand, they can say no to the adoption. Once we come to an age of understanding we have the ability (and many do) say no to the name of Christ Jesus… and what a painful decision that is.

I choose today to take pride in my name that was given to me at the highest cost. 

“See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him.” 1 John 3:1

That we would be called Your own. G-d, I’m not worthy of it but I will accept it. I’m not the best representation but I have a Bible full of ‘less thans’ who have made a way for me to believe. If you can use anything Lord, You can use me.

Out Of The Context: Christmas

Welcome to my #ThinkBackThursday this week, I wrote it shortly after my 19th birthday around Christmas time (totally on Christmas day). It’s more of just a prayer and not entirely a Jesus sermon, but it is where I’ve found my heart lately, in full surrender and hopeful request that G-d would be G-d and allow me to be me and hopefully use me everyday along the way. It’s all I really know how to do is lay my requests before G-d and wait on Him; and even with that I am terrible. G-d help me even now, 5 years later and a little bit farther into the path with you. Grow my heart towards You and let there be even more of a willingness to serve Your people and fill me to overflowing with grace. I am needy, but You think about me. Thank You.

For what it’s worth, I give you all I have.

I’m sorry it isn’t pretty, or all that much in the long run.

But I’m willing and ready to change if you want or need me to.

I give you a moldable me. I give you who I am in hopes that You’ll make me better. I give you me, praying that You’ll make me more like you. I let go of fears to give honor and awe to you. I let go of distractions so that You might have my full attention, not out of obligation but out of the LEAST I could give you. Starting now and going into the rest of my life I give it to You. May I never take lightly my service to You and help me to see and re-define who I should be for You.

I love you G-d and I know you love me too.


Christmas always reminds me how ridiculously, and undeserving-ly blessed I am. I like all the gifts I got today and somehow I usually sit wishing I had more money or saved better so that this year I could give more. I’m always left with a few people to give presents to AFTER Christmas is over. I don’t see much wrong with that, I just wonder sometimes who stopped today to offer what they could to Jesus? It is after all – – About Him.

Blah blah blah… I’m not about to get on a Christmas lecture on how He is the reason we celebrate, if you don’t know that by now then you’ve been driving with your eyes shut and listening without ears for the months that led up to today. But, for what it’s worth, what have you offered to Him? Not because it’s Christmas, but because He deserves it? Daily. Ha <I can’t believe I started a sentence with a laugh. 8APR2015>, honestly take a look at yourself (I’m looking at my life thus far and the future promise I know I can hold onto) what can you legitimately offer to make the space you’ve taken up worth it? Nothing… Yet somehow when we mix who we are with who G-d wants us to be, HE makes us worth something. But He won’t force himself on you or change you without your allowance. You have to GIVE Him the gift of yourself. Which is almost comical when I think of my life ever being a gift I’d want to present to anyone.

((It’s ALMOST embarrassing))

I don’t understand why G-d chose to love me. All I know is that He did.

I don’t understand why I would somehow make an acceptable gift for the Creator. But somehow He sees it in me.

I don’t understand how G-d orchestrates all of our lives into a beautiful array of hope and progress. But oh, He does.

All I can do is be thankful that I live FREE, with a family that loves me, with friends that miss me when I leave, with jobs that are teaching me how to become who I’m supposed to be.
And despite how messy it is, I have a Creator who is constantly changing the image of who I am into who He is and what He wants me to be.

Jesus, I’m not much and I don’t understand what you see in me, but here I am.

My whole heart for You… Happy Birthday (ish)

Learning To Love To Watch The Paint Dry

We are given the same allotment of space each day to choose to fill. It becomes valuable when it is spent and becomes more when there is less. We have the same amount each week but some weeks we take the time to pay attention to those sections of space, we focus on the moments and the opportunities and we focus on the time we literally can’t do anything except for be. There is no other thing more valuable and more exchangeable than this. So I suppose I’ll continue my pondering from thinking back to timing and thinking this week on waiting. I appreciate what G-d has given me an opportunity to do and what He will allow me to do while I spent my days with Him. Enjoy.

“Wait for the LORD; be strong and //take heart// and wait for the LORD.”

Psalms 27:14

“The LORD gives strength to His people; the LORD //blesses His people with peace.//”

Psalms 29:11

Several times in this adventure of living with 7 beautiful women we have all, or a majority of us have had to be leaving our house at the same time. When this is the case, it’s unspoken and understood that we are going to try to walk together – but, as I’ve stated, I live with 7 other women so getting ready together and on time is doable but not always achieved.

No bother though, when someone isn’t ready to walk out the door, we wait. In our waiting what we are doing is showing that we have the courtesy to remain in their presence until they say ‘go’. What I find interesting is that even when we (I) claim that we are (I am); we (I) hardly have the same consideration in waiting on the LORD.

We sometimes lack the respect to show G-d our patience of remaining in His presence until He says ‘go’.

And beyond that, we are given the command to wait, It’s not just a suggestion we are told once and reminded once in the same scripture to wait.

“I’m not good at waiting”

Good, if we are relying on your strength we’d of given up years ago. What still baffles me about scripture is that we are given commands AND ALSO everything we need to carry out those commands. ‘The LORD gives strength to his people, the LORD blesses us with peace

We have all we need, given by G-d – to OBEY G-d.

To ‘take heart’ we are to take up encouragement, it is to be comforted or to buck up. WAIT for the LORD – sit in His presence and be encouraged, be lifted as you spend time with Him until He says, “Ok, we’re ready” And, wait for the LORD.

G-d is not redundant; there is meaning behind His words and His expression to us. G-d is repetitive and not because He wants to say it twice but because maybe we need to hear it twice. He alone enables us with the peace to sit; it’s your choice to be there long enough to receive whatever He is offering to give.

“Be strong” – What a paradox, I know of no other situation than in G-d’s word where you become stronger by sitting. Again, we see a command that personally doesn’t make sense until we skip forward to the blessing of Jesus being our LORD. “The LORD gives strength to his people”. We don’t have enough on our own but He has it for us. May He always be enough…

((Calm down kid, He has this))

He hasn’t left us with this daunting calling that we will never in our lifetime see completed. He isn’t holding our promise over our heads, He is inviting us to take our load to Him and to receive every blessing from His hands that He wants to give us. He is just asking us to wait for Him, and to wait WITH him, and while we are waiting to allow the supernatural creator to give us what we need for today. He isn’t trying to turn us into the Hulk, He’s just trying to bless us and give us our strength for today.

And may peace surround you, even now, even as you sit in your home, a coffee shop, church, your car, school may the peace of Christ which passes all understanding guard your heart. Our hearts take the worst beatings of all and there has been no other way I’ve known comfort to this level other than when I cried out to G-d. I pray that peace floods in and that you are encouraged, that you’re uplifted, that you are strengthened and revived to your best.

G-d knows what He is doing and He doesn’t want you to miss out. Wait on Him.

Even when you’re uncomfortable and feel silence deeper than you hear the truth.

The fact is that it IS STILL the truth. Allow the Words of G-d to sit with you. He has good for you. He is good TO YOU. Find the beauty in obedience as it comes to being with the Savior. And I pray that in His perfect timing you’d begin to ‘go’ WITH Him.

He’s getting something ready for you.