Snow Falling at Midnight

The clock struck 12 midnight as my foot landed in the freshly fallen snow. The cold powder tinkled my ankles as I walked down the quiet Main Street. What once was full of busy shoppers with places to be is now a blanket of untouched pureness and twinkling lined streets. The shops were locked up tight and the windows were dark. There was a stillness in the air that made the huge snowflakes fall at such a slow rate it was as if they were suspended in the air. I could detect the delicate differences between each flake and they shimmered in the glow of the kerosene lamps. My eyes began to focus on a light further down the road. A cool breeze gently touched my back as I moved forward slowly.  My eyes began to focus on the blurry blob surrounding the light and as I drew closer I relized I had reached a forest full of mature willow trees.  Their long branches were covered in a thin layer of ice and they almost reached the ground. I could hear the sweet music coming from the branches touching each other but there was no breeze to make them move. They moved with such elegance and I wondered they they were dancing for me. I moved forward into the woods gently touched the branches as I passed. Within minutes I finally reached the light source. It was in the center clearing of a group of five trees. I noticed there were no other foot prints around but mine. I squinted as the light grew brighter. It was suspended in the air with nothing holding it into place. The light grew bigger slightly and then shot up into the air. It burst into a million firefies and they swarmed above my head in unison. I was amazed as I saw them start to create words.

Beautiful 

Worthy

Lovely

Desired

Loved

Chosen

Forgiven 

Then the fireflies paused and danced excitedly as if they knew He was near. Soft footsteps came up behind me and my whole body began to buzz. It started in my feet and moved up through to my head as He reached out and grabbed my hand. My body grew limp and wanted to fall but the strength in his hand lifted me up. He grabbed my face with his other hand and tilted it up to look into his beautiful eyes. They were a color not discribed here on this earth and my eyes began to water as I couldn’t take my focus off his beautiful face. So much love poured out of his eyes and into mine. He said, “my child this one is my favorite.”  And as His eyes looked back up into the sky mine followed and the fireflies began to form an image. It was a picture of a baby. Looking closer I realized it was me. Then the images changed again, quickly but one image after another of me growing up. Then He squeezed my hand as if he was saying “watch this!” It was an image of me as an older woman. I began to cry. Then he put his arm around my back and said, “daughter, I have loved you the same from the moment you were born to your very last day here on earth. You are so precious to me and nothing you do can change my love for you. Every day you strive to do more and be more and you feel as if you are not enough. You feel as if you are failing. Oh my child that is far from the truth. I’m so pleased with you. Fall into me and find peace in my embrace. You are more than enough and I love you more than you know.” 

I let out a sigh and my whole body relaxed into His. A breeze circled around my body and up through the air. As I opened my eyes I saw the fireflies disappear in to the stars. Even though I could not see Him anymore His presence was near. 

(Photo by pixabay.com)

Advertisements

The Promise Land and our Pregnancy

I sit at a high top table in the corner of a coffee shop today trying to write for the very first time in months. My protruding belly almost hits the table and I am reminded of God’s faithfulness and love toward his people.  In October we found out we were pregnant, again. This will be our 8th pregnancy. (If you haven’t had the chance to read about our story you can read most of it here) Immediately, following the shock of this surprise pregnancy fear set in. I was reminded that this pregnancy didn’t surprise God. He has been preparing for this for a long time and He wants me to write this little boys story.

The idea of dreams and visions coming from God may seems crazy to most, for others it may fit perfectly into their daily routine.  Either way, this is our story and this is how God spoke to us during our time of our preparation.  It was about a year ago when my husband and I attended a conference at the HUB in Bloomingdale, Illinois. It was the same weekend as our church’s women’s retreat so I only attended one day.  I gave my pass to a friend who attended the remaining sessions of the conference.  While he was there he wore my name tag around his neck. During one of the nights he was there he offered to help a lady up the stairs with her baby. He carried the car seat up the stairs as he followed the women.  That is when God spoke to him.  (I’m paraphrasing here) He said, “What are you doing and who’s name tag are you wearing? This means something.” God told him this was significant and he needed to tell Adam and I that God has a plan for us, a plan for us to have a baby. This man has walked with us through some really hard times and he knew the heaviness that went along with this declaration and promise.  He knew we were mentally and emotionally done when it came to pregnancy.  In obedience, He told us anyway.  That same weekend my husband told me he had a vision of throwing a boy up in the air and this boy looked  a lot like him at a young age. I was still skeptical due to my fear of pregnancy and I have never experienced a vision before. I didn’t understand how God spoke to his people this way.  How do I handle this news?

A few months went by and we decided to go to another conference.  This one was a youth conference put on by Todd White and we went with a few of our youth leaders at our church.  We sat down in the big sanctuary and for some reason my very shy self turned around and introduced myself to the lady behind us.  She was holding a baby and I asked her a few typical mommy questions.  Hesitantly, she told me that God gave her a vision when we sat down. She said she saw me holding a baby boy in my arms.  I told her my story and I found out she had a very similar one. Immediately, she wanted me to meet a man that had prayed for her to get pregnant along with many others she knew.  She went on to tell me that these women he had prayed for has sense had babies.  I reluctantly agreed and a few others came over as well.  In a circle these strangers began to pray for me.  The lady began by sharing her vision and adding that God showed her this boy had a gold crown placed on his head.  Another man spoke up and said he saw a path covered in weeds and thorns, unable to let anyone pass. The vision went dark and then when it came to again the path was completely cleared, covered in gold, and had beautiful flowers lining each side of the path. I went home that night filled with so much hope and excitement for what God had in store for our lives.  A few months went by and someone else would share with us that they had a dream about me and I was holding a baby boy.  Countless times God reminded us of His promise by speaking through his people.  Then, one October day that promise was brought to life and we stood in the middle of our living room looking at each other and said, “well this is it! You ready?” Are we ready to enter the promise land, one that flows with milk and honey? (Ex 3:17)

If I am going to be completely honest with you all, I wasn’t ready.  Even with all the visions and dreams God provided us, I was still scared to my core.  My fear was solely based on my past experiences and not on the expectation of what God had promised.  Many of us have not been raised to believe that God is the God in the bible.  The one who preformed miracles, the one who spoke to his people, the one that brought people out of slavery, the one who sent angles to speak his truth and promises, the one who sent his only son to die for us.  Many of us don’t believe he is still alive and working in our lives today.

In Exodus 3, God speaks to Moses through a burning bush.  Moses had just spent 40 years outside of Egypt escaping his past. God was now calling him back into Egypt to save his people from slavery. Moses did not believe he could do such a thing and argued with God that they would not believe him, he asked him in v. 13 “Moses said to God, ‘Suppose I go to the Isrealites and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘what is his name?’ Then what shall I tell them?” v.14 God said to Moses, “I am who I am. This is what you are to say to the Isrealites; ‘I Am has sent me to you.'” God also said to Moses, “Say to the Isrealites, ‘The Lord, the God of your fathers-The God of Abraham, The God of Isaac and the God of Jacob-Has sent me to you.’ This is my name forever, the name which I am to be remembered from generation to generation.

Moses continued to tell God that he was not capable of such a task and God encouraged him that he would not leave him to do this alone.  He would be there with him every single step of the way. He would give Moses signs and miracles to use so that the pharaoh would believe him and let His people out of Egypt.  (Exodus 4)

Do you think the isrealites were scared to follow Moses?  I believe so.  The isrealites were slaves in Egypt for 430 years (Ex 12:41) and this was all they knew. They may have heard stories that were past down from generation to generation about the Land he promised on oath to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. (Gen 50:24) But, when slavery is all you know doubt and fear will set in.  The task Moses laid out before them seemed impossible and I would believe that some even argued with Moses.  There were many nights I argued with God.  “God I can’t do this.  You know my history.  My body does not like human beings in there.  Have someone else do it” I wanted to stay in the place I knew,  I didn’t want to cross over into the unknown because I was afraid of getting hurt.  I wanted to stay in Egypt because the promise land seemed impossible.

Do we believe that God is who He says He is in Exodus 3?  He is “I AM”  the one that is constant, unchanging and forever and always the same.  He is the same God of Abraham, the same God that helped Moses bring his people out of slavery and He is the same God today. The same God that likes to take the impossible and make them possible.  This same God brought a precious life into a body that was overtaken by fear and rejection.  He brought life where death once resided.  He stays the same even when I doubt.  The enemy wants you to stay enslaved to your past.  A past that is covered in pain, failure and regret. But our God wants to bring us out of that and into the Land he has promised for us. A land that is filled with His Goodness.

I have a task you.  Will you try something with me?  Will you sit quietly for a few minutes and invite God too come and be with you.  Close your eyes and picture yourself sitting with God. You may see yourself sitting on a park bench in a quiet garden or walking together on a seashore.  Wherever your place is I ask that you invite Him there and see what He may have to say to you.  It could be in the form of a word or a picture may enter your mind or it could even be a sensation.  Everyone has difference experiences so be open to what He may have for you. He is here, He is real and He is ready to speak with you.  I believe He wants to take you to the promise land. Doubt may come knocking, trying to convince you to stay in what you know, but we have to be willing to let go of the past and believe in the truth and promise that God has set before us.

(feel free to talk with me about what God shows you during this time, I would love to hear and pray for you)

 

Just Love

As I sit her in the airport awaiting my final flight home,that has been delayed three times now and counting, I can’t help but reflect on this past week.  How do I even put what I experienced into words?  So many emotions, so encouraged and I am changed beyond understanding.  There are things about this week that won’t even make sense for years to come, while other things are becoming so clear as I sit her watching countless people walk by.  Everyone is different, no one person is the same.  So many different races, nationalities and beliefs.  Everyone is heading to a different destination, but everyone is going somewhere. Some look happy, some tired, others stressed or weary.  One thing we all have in common is Love.  We all desire to be loved and are loved by our Creator.  One immediate change we can make in the world today is to Love.  This may look differently for some or harder for others, but I want to encourage all of us to take a leap of faith today and reach out and love someone.  Love the hurting, love the unloveable, love those that are different from you, love those with different beliefs, just love.  God wants us to just love on others and let Him do the rest!  I wont say anymore, these pictures will reach down into our soul and grab a hold of your heart strings.  Go.Be.Love.

IMG_6102 IMG_6120 IMG_6126 IMG_6137 IMG_6149 IMG_6161 IMG_6163 IMG_6171 IMG_6187 IMG_6199 IMG_6211 IMG_6236 IMG_6247 IMG_6264 IMG_6265 IMG_6292 IMG_6295 IMG_6302 IMG_6310 IMG_6313 IMG_6349 IMG_6366 IMG_6508 IMG_6514 IMG_6532 IMG_6539 IMG_6589 IMG_6643 IMG_6756 IMG_6759 IMG_6761 IMG_6771 IMG_6775 IMG_6776 IMG_6780 IMG_6843 IMG_6846 IMG_6887