freed

matrix-pillsLast week I had one of those amazing evenings with two of my favorite girlfriends where we opened up about our past experiences and current challenges, provided mutual encouragement, and simply gloried in the strength and solidarity of each other’s sisterly presence.

At one point, specific difficulties faced by one of us were addressed with reassurances she accepted, not quite reluctantly, but with the slightest tinge of skepticism. But later, when she brought up her own encouragement toward another friend, I stopped her and said that she needed to record those words and replay them for herself. They were so applicable to the situation we’d discussed earlier that I was struck anew with how often we tend to believe all the best about others and only the worst about ourselves.

[ . . . ]

This was one of my own biggest struggles for the first 19 years of my walk with Christ. Because it didn’t really affect me prior to that, I truly believe this battle came from a place of spiritual attack – which may explain why so many of us are susceptible to this dynamic once we find ourselves in God’s grace.

[ . . . ]

[T]he harder we try to compete with the grace we’ve received, the more unworthy we feel . . . and sometimes, as in my case, it takes one or more powerful encounters with the presence of God to forever end . . . READ ON

the fisher of me . . . ?

setnet-siteI have killed more fish in my lifetime than most people even realize exist.

Growing up in the family business of commercial fishing and canning every summer in Alaska, I made my way in the world off the guts and gills of several million pounds of Sockeye, Coho, and Chinook salmon. But the one thing I never did in all those years was stop to think about exactly what I’d put them through. Well, God in His infinite . . . humor? . . . Irony? . . . Okay, fine, wisdom . . . showed me first-hand one pivotal night a decade ago.

Now in order to understand the end (of this particular portion) of the story, there are a few not-so-minor and not-so-painless details that must be shared. To start with . . . READ ON

archaeologist or architect?

bunkerTwo full decades have passed since God revealed that my call into ministry would involve being a writer. While many factors contributed to the failure to launch this call on my life before now, two of the most insidious were a secret addiction and my battle with depression.

Now, few who knew me over the years would have guessed my secret struggles since they . . . READ ON