Just Me and Him

I love music. Period. I can hear a song and it sets off memories of years long gone. There are songs that mark specific times in my life. I literally feel like I could make a soundtrack for my life as it has been so far.
My daddy was certainly instrumental in my love for music. My momma loved music too, however, it was daddy who played it loud. We had multiple genres at our house. Daddy liked them all. I remember dancing with daddy as we listened to Alabama and Bob Seger. As I got older, he and I would listen to the music on the radio. Some of it he liked. Some of it he didn’t. When I went through my phases of pop, rap, country and rock he listened with me. Shaking his head sometimes and other times just smiling. He introduced me to Bruce Springsteen and Prince. Along with Huey Lewis and Def Leopard. Thinking about it makes me laugh. So many different styles, yet it was something we both loved. Now a days, he is Internet savvy. It never fails that he has a song for me to hear when I come over. Lately, it has been older Christian artists. “Think you could sing this?” he asks. “Listen to this next part. Are you listening? . . . You should hear the story behind this song.”
I am grown, raising children of my own, but each day I ask myself if my daddy would be proud of me. When we listen to music and connect, I know that’s when he most certainly is. He and momma always encouraged us to sing. Though I’m not exclusively his little girl anymore, when we are enjoying a song together it just seems that way. That’s our time. Our moment. Our connection.
Recently I have been in a whirlwind of change. I started school for the first time ever. We moved. I have a new job. We started attending a new church. This last move was probably the hardest thing I have ever done. We new God was in it. We knew we were being called. So that sealed the deal.
After six months of simply being fed and filled, I reached out to be part of the worship team. This was not a new process for me, just a new place and new people. Sunday was the first time I participated on stage with the team. Oh, how God showed up!!! As we were singing “It’s just you and me here now. It’s only you and me here now . . .” I felt the arms of my Poppa wrap around me. It was our time. I was lost but found all at the same time. I was lost to reality but found in the glory if his presence. At that moment he whispered “Thank you for dancing with me.” My heart soared! Just like my earthly daddy yearns for that connection, my heavenly Poppa yearns for a connection. A connection where nothing else matters. Just me and him.
Life never slows down. Ever. Three kids, a husband, school, work, church, family . . . I’m not sure if I will be able to catch a break anytime soon. But, I know this to be certain: no matter how busy my life is, just like my daddy waits to share a song with me, my Poppa has time to dance with me. And he is waiting, smiling, ready to sweep me (and you!) off our feet!!

You have turned my sorrow into joyful dancing. No longer am I sad and wearing sackcloth. I thank you from my heart, and I will never stop singing your praises, my Lord and my God. (Psalms 30:11, 12 CEV)

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The End Result

Journey : An act of traveling from one place to another.

Currently, the opportunity for me to attend college for the first time has arisen. Yes, I am 30 something and I have never been to college, save some certification classes. This will be be a journey for me. A journey from insecure to empowered. A journey from lack to provision. A journey to prove myself. A journey to prove The Lord.

I have always been honest in my posts and this one will be no different. I am scared. Scared and excited. This is a HUGE step for me. This is a HUGE step for my family as well. The hubby is a constant cheerleader, reminding me every day that we are in this together.
As I have sat praying, asking for confirmation and peace, The Lord reminded me of another couple who were in it together.

Mary heard from the angel first. How excited she must have been. Being a woman, I can imagine the thoughts and emotions that surged through her. On top of her personal emotions, she would have to face others emotions and opinions. She was willing, however, knowing this was God sent.

Joseph,I’m sure, was just as overwhelmed. Which is why God sent an angel to him. After that, however, he could have still walked away. But he didn’t. Maybe his attitude was simply a hell or high water attitude. He loved Mary. This was an angel talking to him. It must be God, and everything would be fine simply because if the last statement. I wonder if he was a determined man? If he was a “I don’t care what everyone else thinks” kind of guy? What if, oh my! What IF Mary was chosen – not only because of her willing heart – but because of her betrothed’s attitude? (I have never thought of that before!) We all know the implications Mary would have faced if Joseph had not married her. God knew. He knew this couple could and would face this journey.

You may be facing a journey that seems . . . scary or uncertain. I challenge you to look at others in the bible who took journeys. Noah built a boat in the desert. Moses had grumbling people on his journey with him! Then there’s Jonah, who took the long way. The bible shows us so many who were on journeys. Mary and Joseph were the beginning of a new kind of traveler. Their journeys were separate but whole. When the savior was born, the entourage became whole. The purpose was set, the map laid out. Much like The Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit – while they each had their own entity – the end result was, and still is – a relationship with our Heavenly Father.

Journeys take us from one place to another. When our journey is God determined and led, we will always travel to somewhere (or something) better.
“For no word from God will ever fail” Mark 1:37

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Evanescent

There’s a peace that overwhelms me when I look at the evening sky. When the last of the suns rays are fading behind the mountains. The colors produced are ones that can’t be imitated. The darkness of the mountains is stark against the vibrant colors. The stars have yet to make their majestic entrance. It’s the moment where transition seems almost frightening. Will it be a starlit night or will the clouds roll in masking their grandeur? The fleeting moments of daylight illuminate peaks of high mountains that could be viewed as ominous. That transition where you are trying to figure out what will happen next. But when I look at that thin line of beauty, I am at peace. All the questions of the day are far from me and my soul settles. I am not pondering the vastness of space or the stars. I’m not contemplating the mountain ridges. I am thanking God for that last ray. That last stroke of color on his painting of the day. Thanking him for the air, my family, my friends. Thanking him that no matter where I am, physically, mentally or emotionally, he is there. His creation is my reminder. My ongoing souvenir. He is always with me. Always.

In life there are moments of transition where we may lose all of our peace. Where the evanescent rays of what lit our lives are sinking behind dark and ill lit mountains. Where uncertainty looms and the stars are not capturing our gaze and making us look upward. That moment we have a choice. We can abandon hope. We can count it all as lost. Or, we can realize that the sliver left is our memory and that God has bigger and better things waiting at the dawn of the next journey.

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Laid Out

Can’t I just lose myself here? In the music. Not the words, not the beat, or the rhythm, but the spirit. The spirit that moves with each chord. The spirit that is stirred as our hearts perk up and come into alignment. There is no place I’d rather be then in your presence. No place I’d rather be than moved into your midst by the rhythm, pushed into your arms by the words that automatically flow, falling on my knees as my heart softens before you. All I am is all I have. It’s not much. It’s not pretty. It’s scarred, ruined by words of others, and quite pitiful. But even still, you desire me. The King of Kings desires me. Nasty, disgusting, beaten up, undesirable me. But not in your eyes. You see straight through. You find me wrapped in your spirit. Because your spirit makes me clean. Makes me white. Makes me pure and gorgeous. Of all the things I want to think of myself, your spirit makes true. But here, in the music, none of that matters. Just your face. Your arms. Your love. Your peace. Your joy. Your grace. That matters. As it flows down from my head to my toes, all I can think of is returning the same love to you. On my knees I pour it out. In words, in rhythms, in beats. From my heart it pours out. Like incense. Oh! If only it was endless!! Endless incense poured on my King! Yet, my inadequacy becomes your abundance. How I love you! How I need you!! At your feet I bow my knee, in your presence I lay my life. All to you. Lord, I give it all to you.

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I’m Sorry Momma

I’m sorry Momma.

I’m sorry that it took so long to figure it out. To see it. To understand. To get it.

I’m sorry that I savored every moment with Daddy, but neglected you.

I’m sorry that I caused arguments and tossed around my attitude ruthlessly.

I’m sorry that I never realized what you gave up.

When you took the role of a “working mom”, depending on Daddy to be the one to meet us everyday after school, you gave up so much. I’m sorry that in choosing to help provide us the very best life, Daddy gave up his nights and you gave up the afternoons with us.

I’m sorry that I didn’t acknowledge that, every night, you came home from 8 hours of working with all sorts of people and fixed dinner for us. I’m sorry that sometimes after working those 8 hours you had to stop at the store, or take us to the dentist or take care of another family member. I’m sorry that I never realized that you sacrificed so much.

I’m sorry that I thought I aggravated you in the kitchen, when in reality, you were just a well oiled machine, fixing dinner so that Daddy and the rest of us could eat and get into bed.

I’m sorry that I never considered us close, even though you often knew me better than I knew myself.

I’m sorry that I didn’t know that you spent time on your knees for me. That you spoke blessings over me. That you believed in me when no one else did. Because those were done in the quiet, in YOUR time. In YOUR way.

I’m sorry that the word “over-protective” came out of my mouth more than “thank you”. I’m sorry I didn’t see that you were loving me into one more day, and shying me away from danger.

I’m sorry that I took offense when you would say “Get up and just do it.” I thought you were pushing me too hard, when in reality you were saying “You are a strong woman. You can do it. Go for it!’

I’m sorry, Momma.

And for the record, you rock.

I love you . . .

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Dear Momma,

This week I saw a movie and I questioned what my kids thought about me as a mom. My situation isn’t completely like yours and Daddy’s, but it’s close. My eyes welled with tears, and my heart ached. I love my babies like crazy, but I miss out on so much it seems. It’s not because I WANT to, it’s just life. The parallel of our lives is insane and made me see how wrong my thinking of our relationship was. I just want you to know, I think you are amazing. You worked full time, raised 4 kids, lots of dogs, and even some best friends. You worked all day and came home only to work more. You never had a day off. Saturdays we cleaned and cooked. Sunday was church. Monday it started all over. I admire you and your tenacity and I only pray that I can be half the woman you are. I love you!

Your Oldest Daughter,

Jennifer