Monday, April 8, 2013


**PS.  Today is a day meant for raising a shout.  For using whatever platform we have to say something.  And that is what I'm trying to do here.  There's so much I didn't say in here.  And that's almost always true..... but for today.....these are my words.

I'm a mom who is pretty careful about what my kids are surrounded with.
Just as they learn to settle in & be confident in who they are.
And it's so tough, because we all tend to take cues from those around us  & we often get stuck in being what we think we ought to be.
Rather than who we were made to be.
Now, I'm not a person who stands opposed to everything either.
I want to raise people that can be absolutely anywhere & faced with absolutely anything & be able to stand confident in the truth of who they have been made to be.
I believe children are power being held at bay like the rock pulled deep in a sling shot.
Waiting to be released.
But not yet.
And in this time I believe that the people my kids are surrounded with are their teachers.
They are teaching them about value.  About what makes them valuable.
Always teaching & they are always learning.
Do I need to be pretty to be valuable?
Should I be smarter?   Faster?   Funnier?  Nicer?
What is it?
We are always learning.
And for now we have tried to surround them with people who expect very much for them to be their very best.
And to be certain to make mistakes.
And to constantly echo love & grace & bravery & kindness & honesty.

And I believe that some of the most powerful teachers they have....
are books.
I am not of the mindset that all books are good books if they foster a love of reading.
I believe there are great books that can encourage a love of reading & strengthen a person's character as well.
I love introducing these littles to Lucy, Edmond, Susan & Peter the Great!  And today when my little red head came home to tell me that she got called "carrots" on the playground I smiled & said, "You need to spend a little time with Anne of Green Gables" & she just smiled back.  Because she & Anne have met.  :)
I believe that books are teaching our kids how to live in this world well.
Not escape from it.
I believe in leaning in to the hard stuff.
The real stuff.
I am eager to read To Kill A Mockingbird with them.
Not yet.
But I can hardly wait.
And I will cry.
And we will learn & I will remember the things that I learned from that book.

That people are valuable.  All people.
And that the world needs brave people to stand for what is just.

My kids have learned about something called the end it movement because of our involvement at our church.
And some believe it's too sensitive of a topic for children to know about.
But I believe it's too important not to talk about, gently & appropriately.
And this's just broken.
This was never the way it was supposed to be.
Some friends of ours helped shine a light, this past weekend, on the truth that there are more people in slavery today than at any point in history.
27 million people are in slavery today.
These friends are super creative & they have awesome friends that helped them to pull it together.

There was a truck with glass walls & inside the truck were actors playing the gut wrenching roles of women trapped in sexual slavery.
This truck drove around Centennial Olympic park during the Final Four festivities to bring awareness to the shocking fact that we are living in a world....a CITY....where people are trapped in a version of enslaved hell.
But a favorite story of mine from the night was the story of a dad in the crowd as the truck drove by.  He had 2 kids by his side, maybe 9 & 11.  And the kids tried to turn away.....but the dad made them watch.  And he told them the truth.
A hard truth.
A real truth.
About people.
And yes, the real is often much harder to deal with than the imaginary.

But the thing is that before I knew...........I just didn't know.
And that gap of time.
That silence is just one more person not thinking about people around us that are hurting.
And it's our turn to rise up.
Not to let it make us fearful, but to fill us with the hope of redemption & rescue & courage to lean in.
And to raise up a generation of people willing to enter the sad & scary places in order to love.
It's our job to equip these people to love powerfully.
Not passively.

These injustices are happening.  Right.  Now.
And just because it's not directly effecting me doesn't mean I shouldn't engage.
Doing something is better than doing nothing here.
And if you are like I was not too long ago, completely shocked by the fact that slavery still exists....then  use this opportunity to tell someone else.
People don't know.
And it's time to bust the flashlights out & let it be known.

**Today is shine a light on slavery day.  Learn how you can help by bringing awareness & rescue at

Sunday, April 7, 2013

30 seconds

I have a ton of favorite pictures and moments from the big trip.  

But this series is among the top.
That big girl right there... was a little on the scared-y side of riding the barnstormer.
Tiny roller coaster.
30 seconds.
And real scared.

Fear can have its handle on us from time to time.
It's a family affair.
There's no doubt that apple did not fall far.

But, we weren't letting fear keep us from making big memories on this trip.
Strengthening muscles of adventure & sometimes failing & getting back up again & trying new things & fun & faith.

And I just love the delight on the face of that little babe of mine in the back. 
The fearless one.
Except for bees. 
Terrified of bees.

And this perfect imperfect shot.
Oh my goodness.
Forever grateful that I almost dropped the camera trying to get this moment.


That muscle got a little stronger.
We didn't leave that one on the table that day because of fear.

And wouldn't you know it.....she went on to ride space mountain with me.
Crazy girl.
What have we started.....
She'll be riding in fast cars before I can blink & I'll have to remember that I might have helped it to begin.
But we were there for this.
This watching her became awake to something within her.
That adventure God has planted right in her heart.
I saw it wake up.

It's those front row seats I've been talking about.
And this show is not nearly as long as we think it is.
And as they move into their lives & their routines & as I do the same.
I realize that the days really are flying. by.
30 seconds....up & down & scream & laugh....& it's done.

This trip was just what the doctor ordered.
A lot got dropped to do this thing.
And it was worth it.
It was so worth it.

He's got us right where he wants us right now.
And we're all inning it.  
Overcoming fear & learning to fail & leaning into the hard & being adventurous...
It takes practice.
And practice is what we will do as we walk out this life He has painted specifically for us.
Isn't God cool....painting stories of Himself through His people?
We say yes to that.
The ups & the downs & the goods & the bads.

This life is a blink & we are thankful to be in the story.