His eyes locked on mine—my heart pounding in my chest. I
wanted to look away—but I couldn’t. I wouldn’t. There was something I needed to
see—something I needed to feel.
Hold My gaze
I looked deeply and saw the lenses of His eyes change. I
could see His heart looking back at me. I looked away unable to bare the
intensity any longer. His love was too deep too, too powerful for a girl in
The next morning He came near again. The music of His heart
swirled in the air between us. Standing before me I heard Him whisper.
Hold My gaze
Tears came in floods. I was just a girl in pigtails. How
dare I look into His eyes—let alone hold His gaze?
He said nothing. Placed His hands on my scrawny shoulders
and waited. His touch brought a surge of warmth within me. There was something
He needed me to see—something He wanted me to feel.
Courage met deep longing and I looked up and held His gaze.
Within a moment the intensity of His gaze became like laser beams into my soul.
His eyes said one thing—
I love you
The truth of His love penetrated me instantly as deep
powerful waves rushed through every part of me.
His laser beam eyes wrote Beloved Daughter across my
I was secure. I was loved.
It was something I needed to see—something I needed to feel.
I saw it in His eyes, and felt it in my soul.
His arms opened wide and I fell into Him. Clinging to Him as
a girl in pigtails would do. Love embraced me. Love consumed me.
Wrapped in my Father’s embrace I knew who I was. I knew
where I belonged—
In my Father’s gaze.
Every moment of every day we have a choice--whose gaze will you
My fingers grip the tiny plastic cup. I stare deep into the
crimson. Silence thunders
through my hollow soul as I swirl translucent red
round and round. Communion compels reflection over the wellness of one’s soul.
Sacred are the moments of soul-baring introspection.
“Remember His death,”
they say, yet I can barely remember His presence. If life comes from death, then do I dare to hope this cup bears that in
which will bring me life…and awaken my soul?
I feel death—my own. I move about, but feel death lurking
within me. This soul, dark and vacant, void of the voice, heart, and breath of
the One who claims to be my God. The One who promised His presence would go
I can not lie. I want this cup to be His Spirit flowing
afresh within me. I want this
store-bought juice poured from a recycled jug to supernaturally flow under my
skin through my veins, so that I may know and feel
He is real.
If I bring this cup to my lips—will He come to me? Can not
this holy and reverent sacrament provoke Him to draw near? Is there not anything
I can do to conjure up a sign of His presence? Oh how I long for His
closeness—to feel the warmth of His breath on me.
I part my lips and drink from the cup.
This tiny splash of crimson runs over my tongue,
And down my throat.
It travels deeper—
As He empties His cup
I pause to feel it drop deeper—
But it does not.
I look to the cup.
Clinging to the bottom of clear plastic a lone drop taunts
me. This one drop is the “more” I desperately crave to fill the emptiness. Yet,
no matter what I do it refuses to leave the cup and drop into my mouth. The cup
had no more to pour out.
My mouth touched by the crimson—yet my soul remains empty.
How can this be?
When His cup was emptied—for me?
Desperation wells up within me…
And a frightening thought dares to fleet through my mind—
It’s not enough
I wince as this mere thought slaps the face of the One I
call Lord. The One who prayed as sweat beads burst into droplets of
blood upon His brow. The One who pushed through the pain to do His Father’s will.
But is not this cup His
Is not the renewing of my soul His will?
Is it not the will of
the Father to restore me through His Son’s blood?
My heart numb from disappointment. My footing shifts
nervously on this Rock I stand. Although the Rock itself is solid—immovable—my
feet scramble to keep from slipping off. If
I believe this cup is not enough—who or
what will fill the void?
Oh no. God. Where have
Methodically I stack one empty cup into another and set it
carefully under my chair. The music swells and flows throughout the sanctuary
as I lower myself to sit, rest, and push away the disappointment. I pretend to
ignore the inner struggle of a soul untouched and longing for more. I can not
keep my feet firmly planted on this Rock. The eyes of my heart go in and out of
focus as I will myself to stop slipping off the Rock. Doubt and faith battle
for my attention. I kneel down to touch the Rock with my hands—to steady
myself—as I wait.
He will not leave me.
Get used to the
Please God. Please.
Dare I ask for more?
If loaves and fish can multiple to feed thousands—can not
the tiny splash of 8% tart-tasting juice increase into gallons if my soul
needed it. My soul needs it God. As
I hang on to this Rock, I choose to believe
even a single drop clinging to the bottom of a tiny plastic cup can become an
ocean wave of His glory rushing over me—making all things new.
I believe. I really do.
I have to believe.
If I don’t—all is hopeless.
A voice booms through the microphone.
Him who is able to do immeasurably MORE
than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within
He can do MORE
than I ask or imagine?
I rise to my feet. My soul stirred awake. It was as if God Himself reached in where
the tiny splash stopped short and thrust the crimson to flow deeper and deeper
until it reached my soul. And there, in my cavernous and neglected space, His
cup turned over to flood my dry and depleted soul with His Living Water.
For a moment I am swept into His presence and I know He is
near. One moment blends into the next and the service continues and eventually
ends. Plastic cups are collected and tossed to the trash, but I have hope in His promise—
He has MORE to give.
On the Journey with you,
Do you have a void
you long to fill?
Who or what fills your longing and emptiness?
Do you believe God wants to reveal His presence to you?
Here or somewhere…be real. Share
Come to Me by BethelMusic/The Loft Sessions (Jenn Johnson)
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all
we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be
glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever
and ever! Amen. Galatians 3:20-21
The door flung wide open. A little boy ushered by his
teacher walked into the school office. Floods of tears accompanied his uncontrollable
sobs as his chest heaved to catch his breath.
His face red and wet from crying he took his seat on the edge
of the bench. He was condemned to time-out. My heart
broke as I watched his tears stream down his face.
There he sat his head sinking lower and lower as the minutes
ticked by. His 5-year old shoulders hunched over in attempts to weep in private.
He didn’t obey.
He wasn’t responsible.
He couldn’t focus.
My heart broke for him. I desperately wanted to go to him. Not
to lecture, but instead validate life is hard, but there is grace. I
sat from afar holding him with my eyes as he cried it all out…
All the frustrations,
…and the shame.
I knew just how he
Really, it might as well been me. Sitting there on that
bench with my shoulders hunched in crying it all out. Even today I too have been
at fault for disobedience, irresponsibility and the inability to focus.
But must he— or I —cry
Who will come alongside this boy in life to validate his
heart and tell him of the great grace there is for him? Who will accept him
even in his lack?
Who will accept me
even in my lack?
If you see me on the bench crying and my head hung low in
shame for the wrong I’ve done or presently doing—please…
Please don’t let me
Don’t leave me there on the lonely bench to sink deeper into
Come to me. Hold me. Wipe my tears with grace. And sing to
me of the One who loves me in spite of what I do—or don’t do.
And friend, I will do
the same for you.
On the journey with
~What are you dealing with today that you need to just “cry”
~Do you have someone safe who will accept you no matter
~How deeply connected are you to an authentic community?
Thank you for sharing your journey.
Leaves brown and brittle crumble through the Blonde Boy’s
Tiny broken pieces float silently to their grave.
His hands reach for more leaves to crunch in his grasp.
There was no horror in watching the dead become dust.
The pale coloring and parched foliage gave evidence to the
end of life.
Everyone knew it was time—
Time to die.
Time to return to the
earth. And begin again.
One lone leaf green and vibrant sits at my feet.
The Blonde Boy’s youthful eyes spot it.
“This one won’t crumble.” I tell him.
There it lay green—full of life surrounded by the brittle
Life rests among the
It fell before it’s time—
The boy’s hand inch closer.
“It’s green,” I remind him.
Life still thrives in
it—today. Even just for today.
In spite of my lesson on colors and chlorophyll he reaches
He needs to touch, experience, and know the truth with his
His small hand squeezes around life.
I wait for his hand to open for the green foliage to return
But it doesn’t.
Instead…it crushes to a thousand pieces and falls flat to
How could this be?
It wasn’t time.
It still had life in it…
There at my feet life and death lie together.
It wasn’t right.
How many others had the life squeezed from them too soon.
Even in these last couple weeks?
A little’s boy’s mother
A friend’s boss
A young daughter
A friend’s favorite uncle
A co-worker’s aunt
A student’s teacher
A friend's father
We knew their time would come—but not now. Not today. Not
Its just not right.
“Why?" spills out of my heart,
interrupting the prayer of peace for the ones who mourn.
If it is true He holds all things in His hands…Does He also hold death?
Can we trust Him to care for the heartbroken husband as he cares for his
young son— alone? Can we trust Him to comfort the ache of a mother as she
buries her little girl? Can we trust Him even in death?
Can we trust Him when He says it is—
Time to die. Time to return to the
earth. And begin again—with
Can we trust Him to bring life to the dead?
My friends, I don’t always understand, but something—Someone urges me to trust…even in
stretch out Your grace across the many who mourn and say good-bye to loved ones.
blog is dedicated in the memory of:
a beautiful wife and mother of a 2-year old son,
–who inspired my friend to live life to the fullest,
Emma whom I never met, but know if I did her 6-year old heart would have
friend’s favorite uncle-Joey,
educator of many children, Lydia's dear father,
the beloved aunt of my husband’s boss.
Although I never met
your loved ones—I felt your grief this week.
Praying comfort over you all. ~Laura
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die." John 11:25 NIV
We look at this Son and see the God who cannot be seen. We
look at this Son and see God's original purpose in everything created. For
everything, absolutely everything, above and below, visible and invisible, rank
after rank after rank of angels—everything got started in Him and finds its
purpose in Him. Jesus was there before any of it came into existence and holds
it all together right up to this moment. Colossians 1:15-17 The Message
Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth
and the life.” John 14:6 NIV