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Sometimes, we journey to the dark so we can be moved by the Light. We trace the furthest boundary lines behind our eyes. We get deep next to demons, weighed down from evil within and without. And when warmth first touches cheek or shoulder or the back of our knees, the weight may not lift but there is relief. . . . And it is the same magic— to feel Light's warmth after a cold night or a long stretch of summer, it is the same glory— to be reading the lectionary in a Home Depot parking lot with sleeping car seats or having a morning cup of coffee on the front stoop with my co-laborers. . . . Somehow, God has anchored the pale blue ombre sky above me like an endless umbrella. He covers and cloaks with Light and sometimes I have to go deep in dark to feel it's warmth. . . . Morning Call:  Lamentations 1:12 Is it nothing to you, all you who pass by? Look and see if  there is any sorrow like my sorrow which was brought upon  me, whom the Lord hath afflicted. . . . Opening Prayer:  Loving Father, as we journey with your Son in this week of remembrance and hope, help us to experience and receive you and your love for the world more clearly. Transform us by the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit. In the name of your Son, our Lord, we pray. Amen. #holyweek #notredame #outofthedarkness #intothelight
Naked morning comfort and I'm just basking in the humble light of it. They wear all their affections like clothes and this one makes me melt because they aren't so attached to their wholeness. They are ready to be broken to make peace with one another -- more ready than me, so I take notes. . . . The making of our Peace broke Him, completely. His humble persistence was full of glory because He was God, not because it looked good. Making peace means breaking pride, breaking selfish gain, breaking the sin inside that so easily entangles us, and breaking the power of the sin outside that so deceives us. . . . #newblog #momswhowrite #writersofinstagram #motherhood #siblings #siblingsasfriends #braveryofsmalllife #Godseconomy #kitchen #atlanta #family #teamkolts #teampixel #teampixelnofilter #nofilter #morningglow #morning #liveauthentic #kids #georgia #southernsummer
"Look, Mom! Edelweisses!!!!" And she passed the peace to me with flower weed stems and smooshed petals. The brisk tickle of Spring wind swept my elbows as I reached out to receive. . . . And it got made again, Peace. Established with delicate weed offerings and vulnerable outstretched hands, peace mended for a moment the breaks of the morning. The Great Deceiver's attempts to put us at odds— to wound one other with war words thrown in defense and pride— got smooshed underfoot in the backyard. . . . And I thought of Jesus making literal Peace, because the world doesn't allow it to come and be kept. Peace must be forged with active rebellion against the forces within and without that would rather war. We are a peace breaking people made in the image of One who carries Peace in his character, One who made Peace for us forever with God so that we can make peace today exactly where we are. . . . "For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility." Ephesians 2:14 . . . And the little child shall lead us.
I studied Job's friends pretending comfort, while withholding kindness and refusing to revive a weary spirit. I taught about the people in Jerusalem spreading their coats out like a royal carpet for the King of glory to ride in on a borrowed mule. I learned about the invisible God we try to force fit our image but our invisible spirit is made in His. I chased my littles in circles in the newly cut backyard and followed Foster's gaze to find birds high on budding branches. I heard Zella yell to our neighbor two houses down to move her apple trees far away because our juniper tree has a bad disease that could infect it. I wrestled through pride and failure and defending ideas. I made a very late afternoon cup of coffee and cooked with my baby strapped on my back. I snuggled my girl and gave her choices while praying she would choose right. On the first day of Spring. . . . We rode to Bible study, the kids and me, in an Uber because I ran the battery down on the van. I caught the sun glory streaming in to hit all our faces in the backseat as Zella chatted with the driver about music, imaginary children, and her preference to not wear socks and shoes. Our Wednesdays have so much Bible in them — sometimes nothing connects and I arrive at the end with mush brain and then sleep in my day clothes. But yesterday, I fell into bed so thankful that there are constellations in all these bits of Light. He is holding all things together and sometimes He connects dots and reveals a special glimpse of the glory of it all. #writersofinstagram #momswhowrite
My brows converge over my nose and my face squints against the dark. I pray, "O, God. O, God." I lay flat on my bed between two littles and take a deep breath that reaches my shoulders and sides and ankles "O, God." . . . It feels like Spring shouldn't come, that it is so *wrong* here that Lent should last forever. That, though our hope for Spring is strong, it is mostly about escape and not about salvation. We have made ourselves at home in winter, comfortable with the frosted ground under our hibernation. Our evil isn't seasonal. It isn't an epoch, a phase, a time period. It is in us— bones, marrow and evil. And we don't even want out. A Stockholm syndrome sickness that's eating us up from the inside but we refuse rescue. . . . The mercy of the Lord comes anyway, budding trees and blooms for the just and unjust. He woos us— relentlessly— out of our captivity with kindness. He calls us to repent of our soul's winter so we can finally see and taste His Spring. He calls us out of shadow and into marvelous light where our winter is exposed and we can squint to see our salvation. And we can know even a little bit more the extent of His glory and the depth of His grace. . . . Spring is coming and we are Easter people, but today there is lament. #light #shadow
Why is it that when we talk about the beginning of the United States it's always "when we founded this great nation" but when we talk about slavery it skips to the Civil War and it's always, "they were fighting to keep slavery in the south." The same humans who founded this nation bought humans and made them slaves in it. And today, for that, I mourn. . . . Every human made in the image of God is the same amount of invaluable. The same amount of mysterious wonder is knit up in our bones, from those first moments curled up in the womb. Lord, have mercy on us for acting like it is not so. . . . . . #americanlent #lentenrose #whiteprivilege #slavery #lent #lament #foundingfathers #letstalkaboutit #repentanceproject #didyouknow #spring #teamkolts #liturgy #reflection #monday #teampixel #atlanta #blackandwhite #slavetrade

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Proyecto Miceas!

joy is a funny thing. sometimes it bubbles right up out of the smallest crack of earth to surprise me when I’m distractedly searching for my next suffering step. joy surprised me in just such a way this weekend and I am beyond thrilled.

God doesn’t have to surprise us. Yet, somehow I imagine He sits, enthroned in glory with angels bursting beautiful harmonies, positively giddy (in a majestic sort of way) at the idea of surprising His children with joy. We may be down here, trudging through hardships and trials… but amidst and underneath all of the regular rubble, a steadfast stream just gurgles up with inexpressible joy. Mmmm.

How perfectly thoughtful of our Lord to meet that subtle need (that escapes explanation and then makes me crazy searching for what I’m “missing“) in the form of joy.

C.S. Lewis wrote a book about his life, “Surprised by Joy.” Given my unwavering appreciation for that man, I know this inexpressible joy has touched others as deeply (and who are able to articulate it more aptly than I).

So, all this abstract talk has surely been a surprise to you, since I’ve been straining to get any information at all up here lately. Well, don’t go expecting any similar bursts of inspiration … today may not be habit forming (unfortunately, I generally can not control surprises). I would, however, like to share how God blessed me with joy in the form of Micah Project.

(A little background) We’ve been trying to get a service group going at the school called “Hands and Feet.” Throughout this year, we’ve held bake sales, donation drives, awareness campaigns, and ventured out on a few field trips. After a series of random events strung together perfectly, yesterday we invited the Micah Project to give an after-school assembly.

(Here are a few posters I made to publicize)

Not being at all confident in our students’ interest in anything not including personal gain, I presented the idea to our teachers that they might offer extra credit for students who attended and completed an assignment.

I’m not sure if it was the extra credit or the praise and worship that followed, but the room was packed out! We arranged for a taqueadas (tacos/gringas combos) vendor to sell after school to raise money for the Micah Project and then everyone crammed in to listen to the story of this young organization, whose purpose is to rescue boys off the streets of Tegucigalpa and then provide discipleship training and education. The director, Michael Miller came, along with Becca (operations director), and three of the boys from the program (Kristopher, Wilmer, and Michael).

Praise God, for he did indeed move. After the event and before we moved into the auditorium for the last praise and worship night of the year, I had a little moment of “Lord, yes!”

Though I still struggle with mission-envy (a new term I’ve given to being jealous of those involved in other missions), I can see that God has a very sure role for me here. Before I came, I saw an opportunity to connect the students who can make a difference with those who need the difference made here in Honduras. I just felt the biggest, blessed confirmation that the Lord will be faithful to complete that work in this school.

Many, many things are changing next year – more than I can explain pushing these keys. I do know, however, that God is the same. He is just as faithful, just as perfect, and just as concerned with the lives of His children today as He was yesterday.

Praise God for joyful surprises!

PRAYER:
I will write more soon, but I have found a car to purchse for next year. If you have not read in previous posts or my newsletters, I have been looking for a car to expand my outreach next year. Though I feel perfectly comfortable and safe traveling around on my own with public transportation, it limits my ability to meet up with students (public transportation is too dangerous for them). A car would allow me to set up times to meet girls for discipleship and pick up students for different events when they do not have a ride. I am also looking forward to increasing my involvement in outside ministries (and getting the students involved as well!).

So, having said that, I am planning to pay for a portion of the car and raise money for the rest. I know the current owner (she’s a good friend) and my plan would be to bless a missionary with the car whenever I decide to leave Honduras. I am still praying about everything, but if you are feeling led right now to support this next step in ministry, please let me know.

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