JESUS & A NEVER-RUNS-OUT, CONTROVERSIAL KIND OF LOVE

there are certain portions of scripture that never fail to take my breath away.
moments I read about that leave me shivering and goose-bumped at the beauty.
they’re the ones that stick with me and start to shape the rebuilding of my heart.

I love peeling open the pages of my Bible and finding Life and Love and Truth in there. the gospel of John calls Jesus Himself the Word, and I understand that with greater depth of feeling when it’s as though the words of Scripture absorb His presence. there’s a holiness in there, in that sacred space of sweet community with the Divine, that beckons off our shoes & calls us closer to a fuller and sweeter understanding.

one of those breathless moments of Divine presence happens in particular for me in John 8… and I really really want to share that moment with you because I think it’s crucial in our understanding of who this Jesus is.
what this Way is that we walk.
where our lives are meant to intersect and mesh.

because Jesus is never a neutral party. Jesus never compromises. Jesus is all-encompassing fullness and a great & holy force of grace. Jesus is always acting, always moving, always guiding.

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Jesus-love is a messy, holy, and yeah… controversial… kind of love.
and the breadth of it is wild & bold.
there’s enough for all of us & there will keep on being enough-
there is no shortage.
there is no scarcity. Continue reading “JESUS & A NEVER-RUNS-OUT, CONTROVERSIAL KIND OF LOVE”

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THERE’S ROOM AT THE TABLE, AND YOU ARE INVITED

It was a hard decision… choosing what my very first post of 2017 would be. and then, rather suddenly, it wasn’t actually difficult at all. allow me to explain…

if you are familiar with the Untidy Grace Manifesto, which I posted here last fall, or if you’ve read the meet moriah page, you’ll know the way my heart beats. the very vibration of my bones is for you, for my people, to know that you belong here, that your journey is invaluable, and that your becoming is the most important thing you could ever invest in, because your becoming is all about redemption and reconciliation and healing- for you and for the whole world.
and so this post, born of that heartache-y vibration, is my love letter to you, dear soul. let these words be the ones that ring in your ears and echo until 2017 has come and gone and you have lived wild and holy and brave…

there is always room at the table. and if there isn’t more room at your table, you’re at the wrong table.

friend, here’s a shock for you: you are invited. 

in a space throbbing with the ever-changing “you’re in“, and “you’re out” rhetoric, and the chaotic drumbeat of a song you never quite learned how to dance to (but somehow everyone else did), there is a table to which you are- to which you’ve always been– invited.

there is a table where the under-valued and the stumbling misfits and the mentally ill and the cast-offs and the theologically inept and the trying-but-failing and the battered and broken sit together and healing happens.
belonging happens.
Jesus happens.

there is a table without a dress code and with no prerequisite except for coming, fully human, ferociously hungry, as you are.

there is a table where your story is heard, your journey is honored, and your small piece of humanity is woven proudly into the unfolding, scandalous drama of grace.

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some pretend they own the table (and the invitations, too), but if they’re honest, they felt uncomfortable there and made their own. their table is not The Table. and if you have been excluded from their table, you can rest assured you don’t want to be there anyway. Continue reading “THERE’S ROOM AT THE TABLE, AND YOU ARE INVITED”

I DON’T DO RESOLUTIONS // MY #ONEWORD365 FOR 2017

this is a post that I’ve been really excited to share for quite some time now… even though I wasn’t entirely sure what it would look like 🙂

while it’s never been a public thing for me, and not something I chose to share on the blog, I’ve practiced this idea of having a single word to guide and represent my year for the past couple of years.

I love #oneword365 and the way that they really rally around and create tribe in a beautiful, holistic way for those trying to live their words! so, if this is something you find yourself really connecting to by the end of this post, definitely click here and go give ’em a visit. (this isn’t sponsored- I just really love these peeps!)

here’s the idea: instead of creating a list of things to do, or to not do, in the new year (which are pretty much either abandoned or causing you to pull your hair out by the time march rolls around), you just find one, solitary word that resonates with your soul, and you choose that as your battle-cry and banner for the coming year. or, more accurately, it chooses you; or that’s what it feels like. more often than not, the word you’ve been running from is the word you need. (don’tcha hate that?)

I’ve been searching for my word for almost three months. and even though I’ve pretty much known it since the beginning, it took me until the end of the creative retreat I did at the beginning of this week (more on that later!) to fully embrace it and own it.

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it’s time. no more messing around. it’s my word that’s been given to me, and I’m running with it, clinging to it, breathing it in and becoming more comfortable with it in my life.  Continue reading “I DON’T DO RESOLUTIONS // MY #ONEWORD365 FOR 2017”

10 MOST-LOVED BLOG POSTS OF 2016

as 2016 comes to a close, and we get ready for 2017 to make her grand debut, I thought it would be fun to take a little trip down memory lane, and revisit all the blog posts from this year that were YOUR favorites ❤

this is a little countdown of the 10 posts that were the most-viewed from 2016, in the order of least views to most views (there are a couple of exceptions, as I didn’t include any photography or business-themed posts).

THANK YOU for all of the love you have poured into this little corner of the interwebs ❤ your encouragement, comments, and sweet emails & messages have made my days brighter and my heart lighter. you are why I write, friends.

are you ready?!

I am! 🙂

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here are the 10 MOST-LOVED BLOG POSTS OF 2016

enjoy browsing through the highlights of this year on the blog ❤

Continue reading “10 MOST-LOVED BLOG POSTS OF 2016”

A SLOW & STUMBLING STRENGTH // 2016 WASN’T A WASTE, LOVE

anyone else get frustrated with the whole #storyofmylife that you just keep coming back to?
anyone else get sick and tired of the same old battles with the same old things?
anyone else get panicky as December rolls around and you think… what was the point this year?
anyone else feel like sometimes their life is just a never-ending cycle?
anyone else feel frustrated with themselves, frustrated with what feels like lack of progress?

anyone else ever just wish there was a way to start completely over, not have to be reminded that they keep stumbling over the same freaking pothole on the same freaking street on the same freaking roadtrip they’ve been on their whole lives?

yeah, I feel you. I get it. I know the struggle.

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sometimes all my Christmas excitement is an easy escape from what feels like losing my mind over the terror that maybe I haven’t changed at all… maybe I’m unchangeable… maybe I’m stuck with this same slow stumbling that I’ve walked with all my life. maybe I’m not meant for anything but a cycle of “well, I tried, I guess.” Continue reading “A SLOW & STUMBLING STRENGTH // 2016 WASN’T A WASTE, LOVE”

LET THE WEAK SAY “I AM A WARRIOR”

I never really thought of myself as a strong woman.

I realize that goes against so much of what I try to live and say and evoke in others here on the blog, but that’s just how it is. for years, I carried the word “fragile” like a brand- a word that had been jammed into my heart by careless conversation and accidental judgement from those close to me. “yup. fragile. it’s all I am, all I could ever hope to be… just fragile.” my inner dialogue was so abusive!

to this day, being called fragile is a trigger which, while I rarely run into, I continuously have to work through and release because I now recognize it does not belong to me or in me.

I stumbled across the most beautiful portion of scripture yesterday as I was doing some Pinterest research (it is too totally a thing) for something completely unrelated, and I was so enamored that I immediately had to go pull out my Bible and read the full passage to soak in all its goodness. it struck me because it spoke to the fragility we’re afraid lives in us, to the fear of our own perceived weakness, to the bold voice and unapproachable courage we are convinced will never be ours…

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you’ve got to hear this, friend.

“beat your plowshares into swords, and your pruning hooks into spears; let the weak say, “I am a warrior.” …bring down your warriors, O Lord.”
// Joel 3:10&11 //
Continue reading “LET THE WEAK SAY “I AM A WARRIOR””

NO EXIT STRATEGY

I’ll be honest with you.

tonight is one of those nights where I’m coming to my keyboard for my own healing. where I’m just hitting the keys and letting all the things stopping up my heart flow free because I can’t choke them back anymore. where I’m coming unfiltered, simply as I am, shaking under mercy. where I’m working out the kinks and tangles of a tossed-up heart.

I’ve been kind of a wreck today. it seems that in almost every area of my life there is strain. there is a push-back. there is tension. there is woundedness uncared for and an insensitive rubbing of the deepest parts of me. again and again over these past few weeks I’ve been forced to lean into the pain, lean into the theatrics, lean into the very real instances where I have come with hands open and left still empty.

so are the times.

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my body is breaking down, getting ill yet again from the exhaustion of both physical and emotional stamina that’s been strained and drawn out. and tonight all I’ve wanted, all I’ve been capable of, has been sitting on the sofa with a blank stare. it’s a theme, you know… getting to the end of myself.

and so here I am, just as I am- seeking truth in the spilled-out thoughts, flipping slowly and painfully through my dearest copy of Scripture, opening up the journal I kept this spring when newness and freedom seemed so possible.

but it doesn’t anymore, and I feel empty and angry and sad. and no matter where I go, coast to coast my heart feels like an outcast under steeples and in good company. and I don’t understand why Divine Love keeps leading me here, sick-to-my-stomach disturbed and lonely.

and this is what I find written in my own handwriting… Continue reading “NO EXIT STRATEGY”

JESUS DOESN’T WANT TO USE YOU

hi love ❤

yeah, we have something big to chat about today. real big. and I really, really don’t want you to miss it, sweet girl.

so come, curl up cozy on my sofa; I’ll pour you a cup of this hot french-pressed coffee, and you can nurse it, cradle it in your hands and watch the steam rising toward the low ceilings in this little apartment.

you can tell me about what’s in your heart and all the yuck that’s been going down in your world, and we’ll just sit and be because that’s what you need. and maybe we’ll talk about how exhausting it is to live in the world, and how it feels like everyone- the media, the church, the social circles- all want something of you, all just want you for what they’ve labelled you as worthy of, all want to use what you have for their own purposes and then set you aside.

and then perhaps we’ll talk about purpose and weariness and how the two of them are all too often so mixed up together like a too-heavily-spiked punch that gets you in trouble. and we’ll say we wish that finding our places in the world wasn’t so exhausting and brutal, wasn’t so horribly demanding. we’ll dream of a future where our voices are heard and our insights are honored and our gifts are utilized in just the right way.

maybe we’ll start talking about Jesus and the things we talk to Him about, too, and how we often wonder if the way He loves us is actually the way we’ve been taught we should be loved… if the deep desires of His heart for us might possibly be different than the things we’ve been told. and I’ll tell you about last night when I was frustrated and started praying, “Jesus, could you just use me?” because that’s what I thought I wanted- what I’d been told I wanted.

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have you ever prayed that little prayer? yeah. me too. like, so many times. and woah, I had no idea what I was saying, asking for… no idea how unintentionally ugly the words were… no idea that the thing my ferociously pounding heart yearned for was as far from the words I was saying as it could possibly be.

until last night.

until I prayed that prayer for what I hope to God will be the last time. Continue reading “JESUS DOESN’T WANT TO USE YOU”

50 WAYS TO PRACTICE SELF CARE

with all the chaos that our lives have been over the last week, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about priorities and what it looks like to keep myself safe and healthy and well of body & spirit during these really wild and trying seasons of life.

for any preggo mamas out there, you know just how much harder it is when you’ve got a little one sending hormones surging through your body (and kicking you repeatedly) on top of whatever tough stuff you’ve got going on.

it’s especially hard not just to recognize those priorities, but also be able to enforce them with yourself and the people around you without feeling guilty. it’s difficult, though 100% necessary in order to be able to stay healthy for you, and for the health of the people who are relying on you!

make sure you have someone who will check up on YOU and be sure you are okay, making time for yourself, getting enough sleep or food, and staying healthy.

so out of this, I decided to sit down and come up with several ways to practice the all-important act of self-care. ❤ I hope you can find a few ways to show yourself some TLC!

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50 ways to practice self care Continue reading “50 WAYS TO PRACTICE SELF CARE”

HOW TO BREATHE FIRE: A GUIDE TO TAKING UP YOUR OWN SPACE IN THE WORLD // WORD ON WEDNESDAY

if you follow me on instagram (um, if you don’t you should. I’m so cool. 😉 ), you might know that one of my fave hashtags is #girlswhobreathefire.

the powerhouse of fire-breathing woman that is Glennon Doyle Melton gets it SO RIGHT in her new book Love Warrior (guys, I read half of that book in ONE DAY it is just so good.), and I almost burst into tears when I happened upon this on pinterest:

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see, I think a lot of us walk away from interactions with people where something just felt “off”, and often our reaction is this “was I not enough for them? am I not enough?”. my girl Shelby (read her blog here) cleared it up for me big-time.

it isn’t that you weren’t enough, sweet friend. it isn’t that you were “less than“. it’s that you were “more than”. you reached into a place with your words or actions where you began to take up your space, and they weren’t ready for it. they weren’t sure what to do with the depth of you.

and that’s okay. Continue reading “HOW TO BREATHE FIRE: A GUIDE TO TAKING UP YOUR OWN SPACE IN THE WORLD // WORD ON WEDNESDAY”