Vision

It is unnervingly quiet in my home this morning.  The kids spent the night at other homes last night, and my mister is out working hard. Currently, the only sounds are the dogs wrestling, and my sausage patty cooking.

I woke up in the middle of the night, which is not uncommon, however this time I did not have my audio book playing. See, I do not do well with silence. Silence allows my mind to think. About everything. In my life, at this moment, there is an abundance of “everything”. So, it took a while for me to fall back to sleep. In that amount of time, as my thoughts were running amuck, I started to pray. 

Now, let me just say, I am honest with God. He already knows my thoughts, so why hold back? If that offends you, I am not sorry. He’s my poppa. If I can’t be real with him, I do not have a true relationship. So, I told Him I was mad. I am facing a HUGE Goliath in my life right now – HUGE. Why do I ALWAYS have to be a David? Why can I not be a pretty princess – just this once – and have Him sweep in, cut the head off of the giant, while I sit and clap – shouting “That’s my Poppa!”? In my soul I heard “you are a warrior”. NO. No – I do not WANT to be a warrior. I am TIRED. My mind is tired, my heart is tired, my body is tired. I feel like a walk in a state of exhaustion. Then I heard “David did not wear armor when he faced Goliath. Take off the armor of others that you have put on.” You gotta be kidding me! (Okay, so I did get a little irritated here.) I had not put on ANY “armor”. I was just doing my best to follow wisdom from others, I had researched, emailed, and spoken to so many people –  oh………

My heart stilled. I understood. I was convinced that I was depending on God for wisdom on how to slay my Goliath. But in truth, all I needed was one stone, one slingshot, and David’s eyes.  David’s vision. 

David KNEW what Goliath was. He knew how many others had tried to defeat him. He knew that Saul’s armor would get in his way. He did not see Goliath as everyone else did. He saw Goliath the way God did. Defeated.  

I know David’s story so well. I envision him standing there, looking at Goliath, almost smirking. Goliath is spitting out insults, and the crowd is scoffing at David. Now though, after last night, I can see David’s eyes. I can imagine this look of victory (you  know that look that as a kid, you would give your sibling when you knew they were getting ready to get in trouble for hurting you). I think he probably looked Goliath right in the eyes, with this piercing stare. Maybe Goliath already knew he was defeated when the stone came out of the slingshot……..

I ended my prayer last night asking for David’s vision. He set his sights on the Lord, and the Lord’s victory. He was honest with God – even at times praying that his enemy would be murdered! He was imperfect, but he never quit. He was driven. As a warrior, as a musician, as a king – his vision was set. I want that. I need that. 

Fellow travelers, I hope that you will see my heart in this. I covet your prayers – as I am still facing my Goliath. I pray that when your Goliath comes, that you will find your eyes set – like Davids!

Re-Entry Fee

So, on this journey of “finding myself”, I have also been on a cleanse. As in, a body cleanse. Ten days of no sugar, no flour, no alcohol, no fried food –  just lean protein, veggies, fruit, and good ol’ water.  I have been taking some awesome supplements to help me get my insides back to a good place (love my Advocare!), and I am part of an amazing team of people who encourage me everyday.

Part of this body work has included me getting back to exercise. Not that I had really stopped exercising, I just wasn’t really diligent with it. However!!! That had to change. As a full time employee at an 8 – 5 job, with three kids involved in sports and social activities, my exercise time is limited. Unless I want to be the walking during my work day due to getting up at the crack of dawn (which, if you do – I aplaud you), I have to be creative with my exercise time.

As I was trotting (okay power walking) around the high school the other night – in the dark, at 7:30 pm – a sign caught my eye. Now, please know, as a football/cheer mom I have seen this sign numerous times. This time, though, I stopped and took a picture of it. I heard a voice say to me “That only applies to the field, not your life”. Here’s my sign:


Now, dieting is not easy. Exercise is not easy. LIFE is not easy. But we are a blessed people! We can make a decision any day, at any time to make a life change. We can change the way we eat, the way we move, the way we live…….The best part???? We are not penilized.  Sure, we can be hard on ourselves. Having a moment of weakness and eating a bowl (or carton) of ice cream does not have to ruin weeks of healthy living. Skipping a workout, or not meeting our daily step goal, does not negate weeks (or even days) of exercise. Do we have to work a little harder? Sure! But there is no charge to start again.

That voice I heard? It was my Poppa. He was reminding me that He paid the price, the only price ever needed, for me. If I leave, fall away, drift off, or have a moment of weakness, I can “re-enter” a fabulous life. His grace, His mercy, His love is all I need. There is no payment needed! There is no judgement, only His loving arms! This is a hard lesson for me. I would love to tell you that as easily as I write this, that I live it. The truth is, I struggle with it. The thought that my sins are not held against me, that my mistakes are are all forgotten, and that who I am is more than enough…….Yeah, my mind wrestles with that. I am learning to embrace that knowledge, though. Hence, the amplified version…….

Listen, we are all sinners. We are all overindulgers – in something. We are lazy – about something. We fail – at some aspect of life. BUT! There is not a re-entry free. Christ died for our sins – all of them. He loves us as we are, and desires the closest relationship possible with us. We can overcome addiction, laziness, and failure – if we set our eyes on the goal and walk in faith. Walk in faith, holding Poppa Gods hand. (That way we can feel Him jerk us away from that ice cream! Just kidding….not really!)

Journey on, peeps! Walk an amplified life!

Tell Us A Little

About yourself…..This should be an easy prompt. “Tell us a little about yourself”…. we see this prompt on our social media accounts, on job applications, and even hear it in interviews. The world believes that each and every one of us should be able and willing to express a response to this simple prompt. So why is it so hard for me to give a response right now?

Maybe it is not that I can not answer the prompt. Maybe it the fear that what I say will hurt. It will hurt me, and or others. Maybe it is due to the “undoing” of what I once believed I was, what I dreamed of being, what I needed to be. Maybe, just maybe the realization that I am not who or what I said I was, and being honest about it, will cause more pain than hope.

Let me just be honest: If  I “tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth” to this prompt, there will be some of you who walk away. Or, maybe not. So, since I feel like I have lost my adventurousness, I’m just going to go with it…….

Let me “tell you a little about” myself. In the past four years I have lost everything I once thought I was, including a writer. I have let the influences of others over-ride my inner being. You know, the inner being that helps you dream? The one that tells you that you ARE different, and that is good…..the one that tells you to get up after being knocked down…..the one that sounds a LOT like your mom telling you that you are a warrior – oh wait, maybe just MY mom said that!

There are those of us who have lost ourselves. We have been trudging through  life in a cloud of others expectations and calling it life. We hear words of discouragement, judgement, ridicule, and lies and call it music – because it is all we hear. There are those of us who revel in accolades from our enemies and call it love. We need to be awoken. We need to know what life, love, music, beauty, and joy truly is……

The hard truth is that so many who are trudging in that cloud, once knew the true life, the true love, the true joy. They were once dreamers, singers, artists, lovers……Who will reach out to them – to us?

Let be clear: this is not a “woe is me” blog. I am simply stating a fact – there are so many who live a false life, just hanging on and searching for just ONE GOOD THING to happen. . . So can you be that one thing for someone today? Or tomorrow?

I am going on a journey, starting right now. I am going to find myself again. The road will most likely be hard, and at times almost unbearable, but I have to do this. I HAVE to get out of this nasty, stinch filled cloud. I hope you will join me. If not out of pure inquisitiveness, but maybe to help yourself or someone you love.

“Finding Jenni – The Amplified Version” begins……….