joni mitchell and a cup of tea…


Joni Mitchell and a cup of tea…

I shut the door so no one can see

and dream of something kept underground

when I had to jump off that merry-go-round.


I loved the ride and all the pretty horses

I loves what I thought I would be.

I would have sold my blood to be published

so all the work could read.


I would wax eloquent and be held in high esteem…

all the other riders would admire me.

They would gaze at me on my grand carousel

marveling at all the wisdom I share.


Well now I speak in present tense…

the merry-go-round broken down and spent.

For my profound literature there is no need

I still like Joni and a cup of tea.



more from the preacher’s daughter’s journal


I am a product or I should say a recovering product of well-meaning but so often damaging Southern Bible belt of the 1960’s-1970’s. I was born on the last day of the year in 1955. I am privileged to have been born into the heritage of Jesus loving, Bible believing parents and grandparents. However, they could not protect me from what I call “being a Church kid” which simply means, as many of you are, one who was at church every time the door was open. One who knew all the right things to say and prayers to pray in order to “appear” to be “all right with my eternal destiny, in other words NOT going to hell.”
The legalism of the Church that distorts truth has always been around. I believe the first distortion presented itself almost immediately after The Church begin. (that will be another subject but is well documented in the book of Acts).
Forwarding my life to about the age of thirty I found that my “sight” and “belief” of GOODNESS was incorrect and empty. My definition of goodness was a distorted view. I thought of goodness in terms of “being” good. Goodness was nice kind people who never got into trouble or had angry or evil thoughts. I thought Goodness was people who didn’t sin a lot, at least not the BIG sins! I got this silent message that said, “yes, Grace if free but now you better teach Sunday School,  join the choir, and Never Never!!! display any outward behavior that looks like sin.  I knew and loved Jesus but I didn’t really believe that God is good. I did not know after all that time of being a Christian and loving Jesus that his goodness was and is supernatural. His goodness is intimate. His goodness is a “way” that He is. It is not just his character it is God’s being.

I finally saw that God is good in his being, he is good in his Word, he is good in his knowledge, he is good in his judgement, he is good in his works, actions and deeds. He is severely good in mercy and kind in grace. I finally know that only His goodness can satisfy my soul.
For any out there who do not know God fully in his goodness I pray today that the Spirit of God will give you eyes to see and ears to hear and a heart to be intimate with Him…as for this girl…“I choose goodness and mercy to follow me all the days of my life and to dwell in the house of the Lord forever!”
girl upon Mercy
riding away
girl upon mercy singing
girl upon mercy
save from all lies
riding to live
a new day
a merciful hallelujah
singing good are you my Lord
singing mercy, hallelujah
riding on
to sing evermore.

Yep, a Preacher’s Daughter –

If I had to say what were one or two of the most loved memories I have about being a southern preacher’s daughter I would say foremost I loved and still cherish being the “apple of his eye.” His only daughter, not in a princess-y way at all but just a light in his eye, a sparkle, an honor in his life that I did not deserve nor earn. Never once was there any hint or lack of favor toward me. One learns young in a “fish bowl” that people will believe what they choose and they will misunderstand a man and his heart and they will take it out on him and his family but they can never touch the “apple of his eye”. The second treasure I carry with me as a southern preacher’s daughter is the peace and stillness of the iconic “Sunday afternoon Nap.” We didn’t really have to go to sleep at all but it was a private safe haven when the world stopped turning and my two brothers, my beautiful mother, my dad, and I all took off our Sunday outfits and each lay between our washed cotton bed sheets  and rested our heads on sweet southern smelling pillows and Rested. It was a Sabbath Rest that I did not yet understand at an early age. It was a sturdy parson’s home and all was right with the world. I never knew what lie ahead for us nor that life would not always taste as sweet as those Sunday afternoons. I didn’t know yet that daddy couldn’t fix everything and that my sweet, sweet brothers weren’t men yet. I didn’t know that my mother’s southern beauty hid pain that I had not yet heard of and had no inkling of the hard things that were expected of her. I memorized each one of them and I tasted the ripened rays of childhood and it has stayed on my tongue forever! I love them.

the way I was before…


I have long been running toward that Morning light

trying so hard to be the holy one with all my might

Then you whisper in my ear, “Peace, be still.”


I have long been kneeling in that Cathedral in the sand

trying so hard to form my self into a holy jar

Then you whisper in my ear, “I am the Potter.”


I have long been wading in that River of life

desperate to drink the holy water that cleans

Then you whisper in my ear, “I am the water that never ends.”


No I lay me down on the Alter of Holy Rest

Trust my hands to the maker of all that grows

and drink every drop form the River of Life…

 oh how Peaceful it is to “be still and know.”

The perils of knowledge…getting out of my head…

lion-wild-africa-african.jpgThe reality is that God is good but he is not safe…

I have two friends who give me counsel that I treasure. They both told me years ago “you have to get out of your head! You are MORE than your head…”

I have a fine mind. I am thankful for it. I would say I have an average intelligence quotient and am satisfied with it. I was not cut from the “genius mode.” What I have learned over the years is this. ..longings and desires are wired in us. They are designed to point us to the POINT of “being here.” I have also learned that knowledge without character is evil and pointless.

When I am in my head I have the tendency to become hyper-vigilant so I can control my longings as this makes way for the illusion of having control over my world but the truth is I cannot control other people, wars, countries, religions, or what might happen to my children or grandchildren. Of course, I certainly play a part in my choices, thoughts, and actions! It is called self-control but control, as in the ways of the  Sovereign God, no.

Sometimes it is hard to make things clear but when  I purposely look and listen I then see and hear without a doubt. I  have  four longings that exist in my soul. My longing to know the God that made me, the longing to not just know Him but to “get to him”, and the most compelling longing is to know that this same Holy God wants me, sees me, hears me, and desperately extravagantly loves me. A love so far beyond anything my fine mind can know on a cherished level. My fourth longing is for not just my family but all of the human race to know this too.

While all of this sounds deep and romantic there is a catch. In the words of C.S. Lewis in the Chronicles of Narnia series of books the characters repeat over and over that   Aslan, the lion in the book who saved the world, is GOOD but he is not safe. He is a wild and wonderful and good Savior but he is not tame.

A lion, the Lion of Judah is “wild” in every sense of the word. He certainly cannot be contained in my fine mind! There  is no safety net, no formula, no religious works to perform that will fulfill my longings!  my longings are absolutely and completely filled in one way…surrender. Surrender to the fear of losing my life. Surrender to the fear that the man might come to  me and tell me the diagnosis  I always dreaded. The anger that  I didn’t get the great early childhood or adolescence or adult life that  I wanted. A surrender of the wounds of abuse and yes, we all have them…

Surrender all that you love and hold dear for they are not yours anyway. This is a supernatural surrender. It is surrender to The One God sent to show us himself, Jesus.

Oh now you are saying “here it comes…some kind of sermon. No, not at all. You are the only one who can seek him and find him. You must seek him on your own. I cannot control your choices.

So to sum this up I will say that “getting out of my head” is at times impossible but my mind can be renewed daily. My mind can reach my soul and weld together within. My mind can know that I have been given everything I need for life and Godliness. I can know in my mind God sent the exact likeness of himself to dwell among us and it is He that fulfills  all of my longings. Every single one of them!

The process of longing and surrender is rarely a pretty one. It is not tame but it is Goodness and it is how I am created to be and I love that…





Heart to the Cradle



       Stained glass windows of Jesus the Lamb

                    innocent drops of blood soaking up this land

No chance to rock the cradle

     ancient before their time

The rose will grow with thorns

             the innocent with their lives

Cry over me, cry over me

Heart to the cradles of time

Fly over me, fly over me

who commits the crime


Sir Oliver Wendell Holmes got it all wrong… remarkable!

pexels-photo-214574.jpegSir Oliver Wendell Holmes said, “Nothing is so common-place as to wish to be remarkable.”

Remarkable: worthy of attention, striking, astonishing, astounding, marvelous, wonderful, sensational, stunning, incredible.

I believe Sir Homes was so very WRONG…it is not common-place to wish to be remarkable. We are created remarkably! We all long to remain so. No child starts out thinking she is common-place or ordinary. When the lighting shines through her window she runs to the window and shouts, “look Mommy, God is taking my picture!” 

Children know they are miraculous beings from the beginning, until “we” tell them other wise. Every single human being begins as a single cell the size of a period at the end of a sentence…that cell builds a body of 100 trillion cells! One human body, one!

“You (God) alone created my inner being. You knitted me together inside my mother. I will give thanks to you because I have been so amazingly and miraculously made. Your works are a miracle and my soul is fully aware of this great and Holy thing you have done!”

Remarkable is not the same as Selfish or Prideful…Image bearer of God… Remarkable!

Ruby Love

pexels-photo.jpgRuby love did you lose your love?

               so hard to know what’s coming’ down

Ruby love did he use your love?

               spinning your dreams around

Ruby love do you love the blues?

            flying high and getting down

Ruby love the blues love you

           put on your dancing’ gown

Lets go dancing’ Ruby

             Lets put our lipstick on

Lets go uptown sweet Ruby

             the way we did when we were young

Strong Paths…Strong Shoes


I have a dear friend who shared with me that a “study” has been done that states “…people our age post on Facebook  because they need to be validated.

I disagree on some level but also appreciate the statement. I think the younger generation could perhaps be “trapped” into this form of validation much more than mine. Yet I had to ask myself why I write heartfelt post on Facebook. I suppose there is a need for validation although I do not get “my mattering” from such validation.

For me, honestly, writing my story on Facebook isn’t about validation as much as it is me “penning my memoirs as I go.” I enjoy writing. I believe that while we are in the daily battle (yes, I said battle because when you are “hurting hard” you are a warrior) of life and in the midst of hard times when we need encouragement or just to share a happy moment is not a cry for validation. I want to share things WHEN I am going through them and the dust hasn’t settled yet and uncertainty is flying at me like a bullet or perhaps I have had a great victory or a glimpse of Heavenly Joy…that is why I “do” Facebook.
The great Corrie ten Boom who survived a Nazi concentration camp for hiding Jewish people in her home says, “If God sends us on strong paths, we are provided strong shoes.” Some of us have needed seriously strong shoes in life. Some not as much perhaps but no one is untouched by “strong paths.”
You might say, I have NEVER suffered the ways Corrie ten Boom did. That is so true and a truth for which I thank God every day. However, I have known suffering and suffering in all forms cannot, should not be minimized. My battle with Rheumatoid Arthritis does not define me but it has been a “strong path” that has required God’s gift of “strong shoes.” A path that I have not traveled alone because of a husband filled with unselfish love. As well my two beautiful and sweet-hearted daughters, parents, brothers, friends, counselors, and even doctors who have lifted me up all along the way but let me be clear that my pain is mine alone. I need “strong shoes” daily.
So where is this post going? It is going to this…I want to be real about my frailty, my struggles, my doubts, my beliefs, my strengths so that if it connects me to another human being that may be in the midst of their own “bullet flying, dust choking battle” or in a season of “pure joy” they might feel like they can make it one more day in that hard place or that I celebrate their joy with them.
Of course, it is RIDICULOUS to say that Facebook post can provide much depth. This type of life support must be, has to be done relational and skin to skin in the long-term but what if just one word on one post helps someone reach out for help or not feel alone or they call me or message me? That is not for my validation…that is the joy of living friends!
So cheers to a Facebook post…May it validate you and me. May it play a very small part in helping all of us to carry on when we are sent on our “strong paths” …may those around us help us put on our “strong shoes” even when we cannot…

a bruised reed he will not break


A Message from the Valley of Decision…

I saw her standing in the Valley of Decision and I reached for her hand gently.
I said, “I don’t know where you are coming from but I do know what you are running from.”
She said she had forgotten her loveliness and her might. She has forgotten the taste of new wine and sweet olive oil. Her trees would bear no more fruit. All of her gifts and talents had drained away. The “invented” normal had left her heart and soul gravely bruised…
I have seen it many times in sixty years. The exigencies the “inventor of lies” has put upon us. The accuser, the impostor of beauty and wisdom says, “We girls have to be skinny, smart, beautiful, witty, sexy, as well as Mother, wife, daughter, sister, friend, healer, cook, house keeper, and oh yes, we can never age, wrinkle, or grow soft muscles or gray hair…
Oh what a relief is found when we know these falsehoods cannot raze our joy! The Spring rain will wash you clean of shame and doubt and you will regain all you have lost! Young woman, daughter, widow, single Mother, or any Mother, any woman…Come to the Valley of Decision and lay down all the plates you are spinning. Hold with palms open upward any control you deem you have and you will realize that you are so far beyond what you believed. Choose Wisdom instead of control. Choose Wisdom which says, “You are the Pearl of Great Price!”
Stay in this Valley and decide to seek Wisdom… be healed, be whole, and dance before the Lord God without fear and then reach out your hand for the next woman you see and give her the Wisdom you have gained…it is a decision, it is truth or it is lies and you must choose…thousands upon thousands of women are waiting for your hand…

A bruised reed he will not break, and a fading candle he won’t snuff out. He’ll bring forth justice for the truth. Isaiah 42:3
Also, inspiration from Joel 3:14