Isn’t it crazy how God will use things that are filtering through your life unassuming and unexpected.  It’s amazing to me how He will take the words of someone else and stir something up inside you that cannot even be explained out loud, only through the flying of fingers on a keyboard as you type out the thoughts and feelings building up inside like some long dormant volcano about to explode, spilling lava in every direction.  Today.  Today I happened upon one of my favorite writer and speaker’s excerpt from her new book.  You know, the teaser pages they attach to the advertisement.  As I read her words, I was immediately pulled into her life.  I understood exactly her words pouncing across the page “Nothing helps me hash things out like a blank Word document with a blinking cursor.”  I get it, Beth Moore.  I’m there.  The need to write causes a million words to swirl uncontrollably in my head until they form some wild tornado trying to find a place to make it’s mark.  It cannot be denied.

I’ve resisted.  I’ve closed my eyes to squeeze out the stories.  To erase the thoughts that need paper.  I cannot continue to write aimlessly.  It seems like a pipe dream always out of my reach.  Publication is some kind of validation for a writer.  Some reward for being good enough.  It is painful to long to write something incredibly profound and God honoring, only to find yourself reduced to writing in a journal that no one, hopefully, will ever read.

She expressed so perfectly a shared thought of how God can use a book to mark a life.  Maybe it is because I have been marked by the greatest book ever written, the Bible.  Maybe it is because my life has been changed by words from her Bible Studies and her books.  God uses phrases and sentences from random books to reach out and touch that raw place inside of us that needs changing.

She had read a book, 21 Great Leaders: Learn Their Lessons, Improve Your Influence authored by Pat Williams, a motivational speaker and senior vice president of the NBA’s Orlando Magic.  I find it amusing that she was undone by what she read in that book.  The questions asked were these: What is your dream?  What is your vision for the future?  How is it I am affected by these questions. What purpose does God have for allowing these two questions that Beth Moore read in a book a year ago to slap me in the back of the head as I read her words about those questions and how they rocked her world in this excerpt from her new book.  If that even makes sense to you….you and I are on the same wave link.    Beth Moore.  Wow.  She is the one Bible teacher, the one author, that has stirred up something in my heart so many times.  Maybe not her, necessarily, but God using her.  I want to have her ability to paint a picture so vividly that for just a moment, you think you are sitting across the table from her sipping iced tea and enjoying a great friend conversation.  And then I read her thoughts, and they resonate in my heart.  “What is your dream?  What is your vision for the future?”  Both wrenching questions that make me suddenly find it hard to breathe and try desparately to hold back the tears.  Why?  Because I only know the answer to one of the questions.  Why?  Because I am not even sure the answer I am thinking is even a possibility!    Even now, I am faltering as I write because I don’t even know what the point of this blog is at this point.

I know one thing for sure and that is I love the Lord.  After this many years of ups and downs, of struggles and victories, I haven’t lost interest in Him.  He’s so incredibly worth it.  He has and continues to rock my world.  He watches me closely just as a parent watches their child as they go through each season of life, standing ready to catch them if they fall, hold them if they cry and high-five them as they conquer!  Jesus is way bigger than I ever thought.  He shows me over and over that knowing Him is an incredible journey.  So whatever the answer is to those two questions, I’m sure He’ll give me a peep at some point.  I may be 54, I may feel like the time is lost for me to accomplish a dream, I may not be able to even imagine Him using me as a writer….but I will rest in the truth that He’ll show me when it is time.

Tick…..tock…..

Time is ticking away….tick, tick, ticking away….the words from that DC Talk song from 1994 keep playing in the back of my mind.  I remember as a teenager wishing time would pass more quickly so that I could get my drivers license.  I remember counting the days till graduation.  Mostly I remember my sweet mother saying “Don’t wish your life away, Dana.”  I had no idea at the time how time would seem to slip away quickly and I would find myself at 54 wondering how I got there so fast!  Sometime around 45 you suddenly realize how time has speeded up!  At 50 you come face to face with the realization that one day you will not be walking around on earth!  Suddenly you think, “I wish I had not wished my life away!”  My mother knew from experience that time would slip away and she wanted me to stop and enjoy each moment, each experience, each day.  Life is fragile and fleeting.  Life is sometimes overwhelming and even unfair.  But in truth, life is a roller coaster ride and we should just hang on and enjoy it!  Cherish friendships.  Make memories.  Share the truth of the gospel with everyone.  We cannot look back at our lives with regret, but look back and learn.  Each season of life is filled with it’s own challenges, memories, relationships and experiences.  Live each season to it’s fullest.  Love God more than anything.  Love people like He does. And to quote my mother’s favorite quote “Bloom where you are planted.”