christian lifestyle

confessions of a curvy girl...

confessions of a curvy girl...

By my daughters age (10), I was already highly aware that my body was not the preferable shape to those around me. I’d experienced my leg circumferences being measured in the school yard, and compared to the most popular girls measurements, and having my body measurements circulated around the kids at my school, like they were the newest candy trend that everyone wanted a piece of…

I need to learn to embrace the body I’ve been entrusted with, and not expect my ocean liner to behave like a jet ski.

Dare to dance

Dare to dance

Not all of us like to dance. Some people go through all of life without ever giving it a try. Some make a lifestyle of dance and others of us pine for a time where we used to dance as a way of life. 

For me, I spent much of my life watching dance, teaching dance and dancing myself. It was when I was crippled by back pain that I started pulling back from the thing I so loved. Now if I see dances and dance movies that harken back to my previous life, I find it upsetting and saddening to think back to how my body used to feel and move. 

Dare to Breathe...

Dare to Breathe...

Breathing. 

It's an involuntary action that we do whether we're awake or asleep, thinking about it, or not, resting or running, happy or sad. We all breathe. Sometimes we are more aware of our breathing patterns than at other times. We may try breathing exercises or be intentional about slowing our breathing down for health reasons, but we all go through a large proportion of the day without thinking about our breathing. 

What about the breath of God? What effect does that have on my life? 

Dare to Move

Dare to Move

It occurred to me recently how so many of us are essentially sleepwalking. 

We go through life, without really participating in it.

We're sat at the game and watching it unfold before our eyes, without ever rolling the dice. We walk through the garden without really ever stopping to see what is surrounding us, and we miss the scent of the flowers, and the feel of the wind on our faces. 

Overcome Me

Overcome Me

Being overcome by something doesn't usually have positive connotations. It implies succumbing to something, giving in to something that is too strong for us to withstand. It's not something that comes with choice, it's something that overpowers us and that goes against our will. 

This is a picture painted with the colour of fear, and doesn't appeal to even the strongest of us.

What if that is exactly what needs to happen? 

Dare to Delight

Dare to Delight

For some of us, waking up and delighting in the Lord comes more easily and naturally than for others. I myself have struggled for years with guilt and a feeling of condemnation that I haven't found it easy to spring out of bed at 5 am in order to spend 2 hours with God. 

Dare to fight

Dare to fight

My attention has recently been drawn to David and his confrontation of Goliath. We know this story, some of us have heard this story since we were small and have grown up with David being a hero to us. We've loved this image of a shepherd boy defeating a skilled, warrior giant! And so we should! 

Dare to Fly

Dare to Fly

A few years back, I went to a women’s meeting where the topic being spoken about was the desert. I remember that the speaker went into great detail explaining the extent of the process that a caterpillar goes through in order to transition into its new form – a butterfly.

Dare to be heard

Dare to be heard

At the start of the year I set myself up for a personal challenge; 'To regularly post a video of me sitting at my piano, playing and singing'.

For me, it is a scary challenge, and is definitely a case of 'biting the bullet'. In my first video, I  explained that the reason for the challenge was to do something practical and to 'make a statement' to myself, in order to counteract a lot of negativity I had heard through my life about my voice. 

Pressing on

Pressing on

I hate cheesy New Years blog posts that try to convince you that the passing of a new day will somehow magically cause a reset in our lives, and that we get to start again come 00:01 on January 1st. 

So this won't be one. 

We don't get to hit reset. We have to live with all that went down in the previous year, and although we may have renewed hope that the next year will be better, there is no guarantee of this, and we don't always know how to make that happen. 

Designed for Vulnerability

Designed for Vulnerability

I just got home from 10 days away on the Ascend Carmel program, where I serve on the leadership team. Many amazing things happened during this 10 days, most of which are not my stories to tell. But the thing that most impacted me about this 10 days away, was the courage that the participants showed in being vulnerable. 

The power of choice

The power of choice

Recently I was faced with a choice. For me it was clear which was right and which was wrong, and my head never had to debate which the right choice was. It was obvious and clear.

What surprised me was how much my heart and emotions had to debate the choice. 

Own it.

Own it.

Recently I've been thinking a lot about how we have to walk through lessons and seasons more than once.  It's a shame we don't learn all we need to learn the first time we encounter a lesson. Like children, it seems that we need constant reminders and experiences that help us re-learn the lessons He needs us to learn. 

Just imagine...

Just imagine...

Why have we been created to imagine things as they are not? Or to imagine entire new things up? 

Nothing is wasted

Nothing is wasted

“When they had all had enough to eat, he said to his disciples, "Gather the pieces that are left over. Let nothing be wasted.” - John 6:12 

This verse is so powerful. Within the context of the story one could pass over this verse and think only of the left over food that the disciples were seeing. But if we dig a little deeper, it can transform how we view the events of our life. 

Blind Obedience

Blind Obedience

Blind obedience is really hard. I see this in my kids, they want to know why, when, what and a million other questions along the way, but don't often obey blindly. Actually I'm kind of glad, because it means they question things in a healthy way, but there are times when we do just need to plain obey. 

The Desert Cry

The Desert Cry

Desert is a dry, difficult place to be, with little or no physical refreshment to the body. Hot sun, dry heat, no water, and dangerous conditions, it's not a place to get lost! But for some reason God wants to 'allure' us there.

Why?

Your Great Rescue

"Grace aboundsIn waves so strongI'm all out at seaI'm right where I want to beGrace aboundsEngulfing me all aroundI'm all out at seaRight where I want to beUntil you've done all you need inJust me and You..In your great rescue. " Life is an ocean. It's full of twists and turns, currents pulling you in directions you didn't know existed, it can get rough in an instant, but can also be so beautiful and refreshing at times too. I don't believe there has ever been a person who hasn't experienced the choppy, tumultuous times life can throw at us, even the most sheltered and luxurious of lives have these times. It's not always circumstantial, it's out inner being that can encounter these waves crashing in, and that is universal.Sometimes we're ready and waiting for these waves, because we know we're walking through a storm , we saw it coming, it started with a light drizzle, the winds picked up, and we were ready, with our coats, boots, umbrellas, and we're heading as quickly as we can to get 'out'!  Although we may not anticipate every wave, we are almost prepared for dealing with them because we know, we're living in a storm.Other times we're happily enjoying a quiet, peaceful picnic for the soul, and in an instant we are being pounded with the lashing rain's of a storm that arrived with no warning. We're not ready, we're left outside in our summer clothes getting soaked to the bone! Our picnic is ruined, our food has turned to a soggy mess which is no longer appetising or satisfying. The rain stings our skin, and we can't see anything clearly, so we just sit there, getting drenched by the rain, hoping it'll pass quickly so we can get back to life!But what if God had a plan in the suddenness of the storm? What if he meant to 'catch you unawares'? What if he didn't want that food to satisfy you anymore? What if he has things he wants to do in you during the storm? What if he wants you to stop fighting the tides, and give all control to his currents. Let Him carry you. Even if that means being all out at sea, with seemingly no hope, and no direction. Would you let him? Probably not!God knows that he gets a lot less done in us when we're ready, and prepared to fix all the things which are going 'wrong' around us. We don't look to see if these circumstances are God's way of doing a work in us, we just get on and fix it. I believe that's why some storms come 'suddenly' and out of the blue. Because in His mercy - he saves us from ourselves, from our incessant need to fix everything and find the easy way out.What if we're supposed to embrace the storm, and all it brings, and trust that He's good. He's always good. His grace abounds, engulfs us, surrounds us, it carries us in His currents to the places He wants us to be. If we stop fighting it, we might discover that we have been transformed, washed clean, renewed, restored and directed in ways we never could have accomplished for ourselves.What if God isn't as interested in saving us from our circumstances, as He is in saving us from ourselves? What if the circumstances are his tools?What if God is leading us right into the eye of the storm, and being in the storm with Him, IS His great rescue plan? 

Nothing Can Move Me

Nothing Can Move Me

Have you ever fallen in a fast flowing river?

I have.

When I was a kid I used to go do water sports in the river which ran through the middle of the city. One time my wind sail caught a current of wind and took me out of the safe area, an inlet, or dock where we did our activities, and took me into the main body of water where I immediately felt the strong pull of a massively powerful river. I fell off my board almost immediately and began screaming for help. I realised instantly that although this huge river looked lazy and slow, it was powerful and swollen, had the potential to suck me under and lose me in it's depths

Won't you break me?

Won't you break me?

"Made of clayI pour myself outI don’t have the strengthSo Lord I ask, Won’t you break meI’m alabaster..."  

The woman with the alabaster jar has to be one of the most well known and loved stories in the Bible. It talks of a woman scorned, who should have been turned away and rejected, in the culture of the day, she was known to be unclean, she was thought to be embarrassing herself, and was a woman.  All reasons for her to be forgotten. But she isn't forgotten, she is remembered, and Yeshua said himself that she would be remembered through the generations.