Posts Tagged ‘be real’


Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

I’m about to get personal.

I know, I always do. It’s my nature to let it all hang out and this post has been rattling around in my heart for years. Like, seriously. A long time.

Before I go any further, I have to tell you….I’m deeply indebted to so many people that have walked alongside me in my faith path. I’m not where I should be, but I am certainly trying to get where God wants me to be. Every day.

In my teen years when my heart was pliable and mold-able, some really dedicated leaders loved on me and helped plant the Love of Jesus in my heart. It worked. I fell hard and in my own foolish ignorance, bumbled around trying to figure out just how to do this Christian believer lifestyle. I lived in a house of unsaved people. Following Jesus was going to be really tricky. Plus, I was a brand new Christian. I didn’t know how to be Christ-like. So, I joined the ranks of other followers and did what they did. Talked like they talked. Acted like they acted.


Fast-forward many years. I met a guy, he loved Jesus and we fell in love. We walked the aisle, said, “I do!” and started our happily ever after. Kids came along and we thought we were doing all that God required of us to live a happy and blessed life.

Then, we got restless. We started to wander. Life as we knew it didn’t feel complete. Something needed to happen. So, we hooked our wagon to seminary and took off for the ministry.

My first few weeks at Bible college were filled with anxious thoughts. Not thoughts of – did we make a mistake? But, thoughts of – What am I doing here? I’m a tiny little baby Christian and I don’t know anything about this great big God. I’m weak. I’m naive. I’m simple. I’m not Bible savvy. I’m just a normal gal.

It seemed like every person I met had a super power of Bible knowledge and I was way behind the curve. I prayed for God to help me not feel so insecure. I knew what I needed to do to change that was study God’s Word. So, I did that with a house full of babes. I read my Bible and I studied every lesson I could find. God provided other women for me to lean on and grow alongside while I was there. Those friendships are still solid and longstanding because they were genuine and linked to a common desire – to know and love God more.

They were authentic.

We left seminary because that’s what happens. God sends you out to do THE WORK of ministry. We were warned. We were cautioned as to what REAL LIFE could and would do to our fragile egos and ministry muscles. Like an obstacle course of Jesus Ninja Warrior, the real ministry trenches challenge you. Just when you think you’ve made it to the buzzer goal, you slip and fall. Ministry life bruises you and knocks you around. It leaves marks on your heart and mind that take a long time to heal. It feels like it’s going to kill you some days. It’s also amazing.

And that’s just what ministry is like in the American church. Don’t even get me started about crossing an international line of safety. That’s hard work. That’s hard living. That’s struggle. My life, not even worth comparing to the missionaries of this world. God, love them hard.

We didn’t stay long. We slipped out, quietly around year 10. Something we were warned would happen. Ministers leave the church and its people at record numbers. Churches are unhealthy and so are some in ministry. We’ve seen both. Sadly, we’ve experienced hurting churches and deeply hurting leaders. Satan has tricked and trampled many and continues to wreak havoc on those trying to live for Christ. We weren’t any better.

It’s been about 8 years since my hubby was called Pastor and our kids PK’s. We’ve missed it and then we’ve boasted at how we made it out alive (barely). I have no clue if we’ll ever go back or why we ever would (except, Jesus). I just know, that the past I’ve lived has jaded me.

I long for authenticity.

No matter where we’ve lived or what jobs we’ve worked, I have searched for those that are genuinely sold out for Christ. Oh, there are plenty who call themselves followers or Christians. But the ones who are truly authentic have been rare. Why? I don’t know. I used to think that I was just from another planet. Not literally, but culturally. The south is known as the Bible Belt and just about everyone I know…loves Jesus. Moving north felt a little like I was leaving behind the open trust of living out loud for the Lord.

Honestly, it felt like most people were ashamed of loving Jesus. Like, it was something to keep a secret. Or to yourself.

So, I fell into that hush hush society behavior too. And I felt miserable.

Christians do a great job of being so-so. Me included.

I love God. I am totally His. I don’t have anything to lose for loving Him and yet…..I live like I don’t even know Him some days. I’m ashamed.

He is never ashamed of me, ever.


This topic is heavy, I know. Who wants to fess up to being a lukewarm Christian? I’ve been one and I’ve let my faith sit stagnant on a back burner for too long. Thankfully, Jesus doesn’t offer rest to His children who wander aimlessly. He lovingly allows discomfort and even misery to keep us linked to Him and our true calling in this janked up world. (Welcome, Holy Spirit)

Thank you, Lord.

Here’s what I want you to know – I am just like you. I’m selfish, greedy, foolish, quick to judge, easily angered, wishy-washy, broken, needy and full of myself. I brag about my guaranteed spot in the Kingdom and still I fall flat on my face when it comes to sharing the Gospel. I live with all the blessings God has to offer and I miss out on a million chances to be the face of Jesus to a hurting world. I do a great job of living FOR WANDA!!

And when life gets rocky….. I cry out for help, from G O D !

I’m pathetic. I’m exactly the opposite of what I want in others around me, AUTHENTIC! I want real and I want to be real, to myself….to God and to those around me.

The reality? I can’t do that on my own. I will more than likely fall short. I’ll mess up. I’ll break in two and that’s okay. The Christian faith is a journey.

I’m dedicated to being authentic. Please be patient with me while God works and continues to mold me into the person He wants me to be.

be God

You Have To Be Good

Friday, June 7th, 2013


Have you ever been told to be a good example for others?  Did it make you feel a little pressured?  What about your kids?  Have you ever told them that others are watching them and expecting them to do what's right?


Uhh, yea….me too.  I regret it.

Looking back, I see how heavy that kind of advice can be on a person.  My goal wasn't to stress my kids out (of course) but to help them make good choices for themselves and whomever might be watching.  Some might call it the "don't make ME look bad" parenting advice.  Be good or people will judge me.  I really think it was just one "wanna be" good girl trying to force feed perfection into her brood without realizing all the consequences that come from trying to fit into a mold of goodness.

Don't get me wrong, we are to train our kids to make right choices.  But we must also let them fail.  It's impossible to be perfect.  No one can do everything right all the time.  Our own imperfections shine bright every single day (right in front of our kids) and who are we to force them to do as I say and not as I do?  As much as I want to set a good example for my kids….I have fallen short in so many ways and it's clear to them — I am human! 

Raising good girls (and boys) shouldn't be our only goal as we parent our kids.  Teaching them to be real and showing them how to live a genuine life of faith will give them the better adantage as they navigate life.  Minus the unattainable pressure of always being perfect.  Who needs that?

If you were wondering….here are some of the effects of being perfect that we place on our kids.

1 — I can never mess up.  If I'm a Christian, I have to have it all together…all the time.

2 — Hide.  If I can't live up to the good kid expectation, I'll just hide behind this mask of perfection.  No one will know.

3 — People are watching.  They are, but they don't need me to be perfect…they need me to be real.  They need to know I struggle and WHOM I turn to when I'm in a bind.  Think: Faith in action!

4 — They'll judge me.  Yes, they will.  But that's more of a reflection of them than you.  Live outloud for Christ and stop worrying about being the best!

I admit that what I want for my kids is for them to have good and happy lives.  However, I don't want them to miss out on any lessons that God might have for them.  Sometimes those lessons are what molds us to be just who Christ wants us to be.  While I wish I could change many things when it comes to my parenting…I'm grateful that God used me and helped me to teach my own kids about forgiveness & grace.

Being real is way more important than being good.  After all, real people follow God and real people make mistakes.  Striving to be more like Jesus is the example I want to set…not just for me but my kids too.


I want to be teachable.  I want to be approachable.  I don't want to look like the girl who has it all together.  Use me, mold me and make me more like You!