I outlined the first two chapters of 'The Vessel' in the car during football practice last night. My fingers possessed to get the words onto the page. I vaguely remember the layers of my surroundings.

The sound of my son in the backseat intense on sending little balls of feathers into the piggy perpetrators. The evening heat pressing down on us. Leaving us puddled, melting, and sticking to our seats.

The staccato drill whistles and and the bass of dozens of cleats hitting the grass. The smell of dust, fire-pits and oil. The revving engines, and random blasts of an air horn.

The announcer calling the race to begin, "Ladies and gentlemen we are about to start our timed runs....."

But sir I am already on my second lap. Just the setting to a furious scratching of my pen, never touching me. I was in the zone, and it felt crazy good.

It's been far to long

Hey! How's it going. It's been awhile. It's been far too long. I will take this time now to apologize to those who are on email alerts, but I have uploaded some content that I had over at Facebook. I thought it could find a home here too.

A lot has happened in these few months. That two year old? He is three now. And that leaky radiator, has been replaced by a brand new car. God has blessed me abundantly in my absence. But that is nothing new, He blesses me abundantly everyday. Everything that I have, and every word on this page is solely because of Him. I am not ashamed to say it.

I don't deserve it. But He did it. Even when I was unfaithful, or stubborn in my sin. Again and again, He moved me out of His way so He could do good works for me. That people is grace.

Loving me when I am not lovable. Encouraging me when I am throwing stones at myself and others. Placing me back on my two feet when I fall. Every single time it's Him.

Just two weeks ago I wrote and essay and submitted it - under duress I must say, I was threatened with violence if I didn't - to win a ticket to The Ragged Edge Weekend with Ted Dekker. I didn't want to do it. I had gone through some pretty deep wounds with my writing lately and thought, 'No way am I putting myself out there, and anyway, we don't have the cash for travel expenses.' But again the threat of violence from your pastor's wife is a serious thing. Something that you do not take lightly. I mean, she's a pastor's wife, you know she isn't lying about smacking you.

So I entered, and two days later, won. I couldn't believe it. It was some MAJOR salve on my wounded artist's soul. But then the incidentals reared their ugly head. Flight, hotel, rental car, all these things that we had not budgeted. So I smiled and nodded. Told everyone if God wants me there He will make a way. But inside thinking, 'Not. Going. To. Happen.' I was heartbroken. I had heard the call to write more seriously, over and over recently. You know when you have a dream about chocolate chip ice-cream and everywhere you look the next day people are eating chocolate chip ice-cream, or buying it, placing it on their head as a cooling device in this sweltering heat. It was like that, only less sticky.

God did make it happen. From a collection that friends took up online, and gifts from a very benevolent source, I am going to be in Nashville in August. I cannot deny it any longer. God has called me to be a writer. To create worlds that tell His story, and if He so desires, to be His secretary and take dictation. Even though I had all but abandoned this blog.

Even though I had all but abandoned any sort of writing at all. He did it. He made it happen. That is Grace guys.

Glad to be back. I've missed you all.

Saving just one

The house is quiet. All of my boys are sleeping yet I am restless. I have a feeling I am forgetting something, that I need to be doing something right now and I can't put my finger on it. So I sit here with a spoon in my cup of Weight Watchers ice cream and I think about tomorrow.

Tomorrow is Easter, or Resurrection Sunday for those of us who have decided to distance ourselves from the bit o pagan that the centuries have tried to combine with the holiday. We call it Resurrection Sunday, and we put on our dress clothes and go to church. Sing our songs of praise, shake hands, kiss babies and spend the day Thanking God for taking a chance on some poor slobs like us.

Then if we are blessed, we will go to family and gorge ourselves. We will eat the ham (that still confuses me) the salads and the pies. We are having cake tomorrow in our family, celebrating my son's birth as well.

So as I said, here I sit and for some reason all of this ceremony has made me angry. But why? Should we not celebrate one of the greatest moments of human history? The day that our Lord made good on His promise and rose after three days in the ground. (Or in a cave, whatever you prefer)

Of course. Absolutely. There really is no other reason for this day. Bunnies and ducks be damned there IS no other reason. Then why am I so upset? Is it because that I still believe that even within the revelry we have not entirely grasped what we are celebrating?

A best friend and I were having a discussion today. She is in the process of adoption, finishing her classes to become a certified parent. I shook my head at the thought of those of us that are blessed with the ability to bare offspring freely, and yet this woman who yearns for nothing else has to have a piece of paper to say she is fit to raise a child.

It doesn't seem fair does it?

My husband and I looked into our bank account today to see that by no fault of our own, and by actually being responsible and paying our bills on time; a bank error over withdrew our account by a substantial amount of money. This happens the same day our car begins to leak antifreeze.

It doesn't seem fair does it?

A very close friend lost her father this week. A good man, faithful and devoted to his family. Closed his eyes and breathed his last on Good Friday. Three days before Easter. While celebrating the day, she will be also mourning the loss.

It doesn't seem fair at all.

What does all of this have to do with the Resurrection? Everything.

Without the act of the Resurrection this would be all we had hope for. Imagine going through a dark tunnel with no hope of the other side. Imagine sinking, slowly to your demise with no hope of rescue. Without the Resurrection, death wins.

With one breath. One single act of love everything changed. Everything was different. One act of rebellion. One Voice saying, "No, I will not allow this to be all there is." He shattered the law of death and with His blood wrote a new covenant of hope.

When I told my best friend today about how unfair her situation is she took a deep breath and said, "I will never feel the kick of a child within my belly, or know the miracle of giving birth. But I, and I alone will know the joy of saving someone. Someone who had no hope, who no one wanted. Taking someone from their very lowest, their very worst, and bringing them into my arms and saying 'You're worth it.' I think that is a beautiful thing."

I do too, I really do. Amen, and my your Resurrection Sunday be filled with the hope that we have been given.

Resurrection: Rob Bell from Rob Bell on Vimeo.

You say tomato. I say kumquat

I like me. I do.

I like the way I think. The way I always see things in a totally different perspective than the average human mammal. Just this morning I pondered the oddity of indoor plumbing. Who decided, "You know I think I want to create a special room inside my home. A wonderful room just for urination, and poo." I want to meet that person.

The other day I got into a very serious debate defending my stance that I have the ability to make the perfect glass of chocolate milk:

"What brand?"

"Every brand, I've perfected my craft."

"But what medium?"


"You can't be serious. Powdered chocolate tastes differently than liquid."

"Not when I do it."

"That's impossible. You're telling me that you can perfectly measure the amount of mix -be it liquid or powder- to make it taste exactly the same."


"How is that possible? What? Can you see to the gram?"


"You can see individual crystals, and by doing so know exactly how much is needed to make-"

"The perfect glass of chocolate milk. Yeah. That's what I said, I'm just that good."


"Really. Don't get me started on my ninja skills."

It was then the debate got heated.

This is my life, and I love every second. I believe I have been created, that God said, "Let's get a little crazy with this one."

I believe that I bring Him joy, and that although some may mistake my carefree attitude for a lack of intelligence or inappropriate behavior there is a reason I see things in this way.

The other day I was sitting next to my husband lamenting about how difficult it has been with the kids out of school:

"Honey. Today was insane. First the boys played together, then they fought. Then they played, then they fought again. On and on it went-"


"In a minute Eli. Seriously hon, I thought my head would explode. I played-"

"Hey Mommy."

"Eli, Daddy and I are talking. I said wait. Anywho, I played with them, then I broke up fights, back and forth, on and off-"

"MOMMY! It's important!"

"What Eli?"

"That's a pattern."


"A pattern. We played then we fought. Played then fought. A pattern."

A smile broke across my face. "Yes Eli. You are absolutely correct."

It was a good day. Like everyday I wake up in my own Wonderland.
Have a great one my friends. Go love someone today.

Daddy issues

Growing up my father was seldom there. His job required that he travel a lot, and usually his homecoming was more of a reintroduction than a reunion. As I grew I realized that my father and I were total opposites, and being so we butted heads.

We had no common ground. What I saw as voluntary distance was actually no fault of his own. His past and own childhood was showing through the facade of being a father. My dad wanted a relationship, but he didn't really know how to go about it.

Then I met my husband, and before we even became serious, he told me of his dreams of being a father. His visions of his children running up to him and how he would hold them high on his shoulders so they could reach the sky.

My husband is also reserved emotionally, he is not one for grand shows of affection, nor has he ever written me a sonnet. There are days when I sit and watch him, wondering what he is thinking.

Is he happy? Have I full-filled my duties as a wife? Does he want for anything?

Then our boys walk into the room, and he lights up. I didn't understand such devotion before I saw him with our children, and I can honestly say that it's intensity still surprises me everyday. I asked my husband one night in the hushed whispers of our marriage bed, "Is there anything you wouldn't do for our boys?"

"No Andrea. I would die for them. If they need me I am there."

We watched a movie the other night that asked a question.

"Your house is on fire. You have sixty seconds what do you grab?"

At that moment Russ looked over and we smiled at each other. Not because I knew he would grab me, but because of the unspoken fact that his first priority would be the boys. If time permitted he would grab me as well, probably at his own demise, but without even having to ask I know that not even a wall of fire would keep him from our children.

I believe this was God's gift to me, Him gently saying, "Let Me give you a physical reminder of My Love for you everyday." Russ has made mistakes as a dad, and those mistakes weigh on him more than any other thing could. But each morning he wakes eager to be the man that our boys could look up to. The funny thing is that he doesn't even try. He just smiles when he sees his boys running into his arms, so that he may lift them up so they can touch the sky.

Three-two punch

Noah Paul,

This letter is to inform you that your level of cuteness is an unfair advantage. When you came over batting your huge blue eyes and laying your head on my hand (nice touch by the way) only to ask in a voice that I can only imagine has been derived from the song of angels, "Sum chocwate milk pweese." It was too much.

You got the milk because of the please, and because of your cuteness, if you would have asked for the head of the dog to use as a kick ball I would have given you that as well.

Sincerely, Your Mother

(who never had a chance)

The eye of the beholder

(These are a few bits that I am bringing over from Facebook...)

My Christmas tree is fairly pathetic. It is lopsided and bare. It has spots that you can see through and an angel that will not sit straight on the tippy-top no matter how many times I fix it. It is covered with a hodge podge of handmade ornaments, mismatched colored balls, and broken garland. It is truly ugly.

A horror to look at, you wonder how it even stands. How is it possible for something so ill put together to last, and yet it does. It has weathered a cat climbing through it's bent branches, a dog trying to pull said cat out by it's tail, and two children grabbing and rearranging it's decorations.

The strangest thing? I love it. I look at it with pride. I sit at night with all the lights turned down and just gaze for hours at it's dim multicolored menagerie. I remember the day my husband brought it home, a cast off from a Black Friday sale. I reminds me of my youngest bringing me the dirty diaper that he had proudly changed himself. It was all wrong, a terrible mess, but his heart was in the right place.

But the real reason I love my tree so much is it is a tangible testament to who I am. A fairly pathetic mess, picked bare in spots and an angel that sits crooked no matter how many times it is fixed. I like to think that God sometimes sits at night with the lights low, and for hours watches the multicolored menagerie of my life with pride. Because He knows it may be all wrong, but my heart is in the right place.