Do Your Words A Favor...

       DAY 4 OF 365

I've chosen a word over the years to push me into a new season. Freedom was a real hit... it still encourages, reminds and sometimes haunts me. Some words push you over the edge, off the couch. That's the point, right?

This year a verse, Psalm 90:17 took my breath for a minute. "Let the favor of our God be on us; establish for us the work of our hands - establish the work of our hands."

The thing is this... I have been praying God's favor on my family all year. Specific prayers, circumstances, details. His rich, mysterious favor, that leaves you changed, your soul branded, your tongue telling others of Him. And guess what?! He showed up! Of course He did! I knew He would... because that is what He does. It's Who He is. Protector, Deliverer, Healer. 

The Psalms are a lifeline for me... they remind me He is my Warrior Father, Who goes to battle for me (and you). Friends, can anything compare to this?!

When I read verse 17 I am reminded my role in this. I asked, begged, pleaded for His beautiful favor and He lavished it... so now what? Agh... now the part that I easily forget. The doing part. The part where He has prepared the soil, healed the sick, bandaged the wound, kissed the parched lips... and yet, I walk away.

Because I have walked away so many times before... but this time will be different. Because He has taught me through His word, His people, even my choosing a simple word over the years... yet being changed by it. He has shown me His faithfulness, His tender mercies and great love for His sons and daughters. Because of these things, I breathe Him in and see the opportunity of today, now. Establish the work of my hands Lord Jesus, Merciful Jesus. I am undone.

May I choose well this year. The abundant life lived in the mystery of a God Who is amazing grace, thunder and lightning, yet also a soft whisper! He is mystery and majesty and I am on the floor. 

We will choose Him this year or the distraction this world so freely offers. I'm quite good at this. I have lived the distracted life. It's empty. The movie ends, the series is over, the item arrives, the new car smell fades, the hobby becomes old. 

It's a new day in a brand new year. Pick your words well and do them a favor. Believe them and then... live them well. They carry weight and will influence your choices. If they don't, they are empty words that will lead to another new year... but same old you. Don't. Just Don't  

In other words... Live them out loud! 



You Are Enough...


She followed me out of the store. I didn't notice. I started my car, locked the doors, checked my phone for messages.  

I looked up and saw her approaching, smiling. Did I know her? I put my window down. She told me she had seen me in the store, noticed my hair and wanted to compliment me. I was ready to share the names of Erin and Sarah, my stylists. 

I thanked her and then she said...
"Can I ask you something personal?" I don't remember if I said yes, but she began a detailed, nervous, fast paced description of her marital situation. Honestly the words were falling so fast I couldn't keep up.  Separation, separate beds, back together, husband's desire to reconcile...

My first thought was, here we go, she is going to ask me for money. I figured there was a point to this one sided conversation. I have heard it all and sometimes even believe it, sometimes helping with dollar bills. 

Yet, that hadn't been my first thought when I saw her approach my car.
I listened and started to realize she was asking my opinion.
The opinion of a stranger.
She told me she had bought some lingerie and a candle and maybe she should buy some wine.
They had clearly been separated a long time and he wanted her back, all of her.

She was flustered, embarrassed really and said, "I don't know if this is enough, maybe I should buy a bottle of wine." Second time she mentioned the wine. 

I looked at her, in her thrown together outfit and long, thinning dark hair, and I thought to myself... Woman, never in a million years did you think you would be standing here asking a total stranger about your love life. 

She doubted herself, was nervous about the intimacy aspect of reconciliation and was desperate for someone to speak into her. Even a stranger.

I looked her in the eyes, smiled and said, "You are enough."
She mentioned the wine... again.
I said "You are enough. You are beautiful and you are enough."
She looked at me and started to tear up. She mouthed the words back to me.
You are enough. 
I said, "Don't forget that."

She backed away from the car and we said goodbye.
I caught my breath and reached a hand to wipe my wet eyes. 

Later I wished I had done more. Made sure she was okay, invited her to coffee. I wish I had given her a card. I wish I had turned off the car, taken her to lunch.

I wished she knew she was enough.

Friends, we are enough. Right where we stand this moment. Too fat, too skinny, too young, too old, too loud, too quiet. We Are Enough. 

You Are Enough. Never forget that and know that your Father God loves you... Just as You Are.