Sunday, November 29, 2009

My Strong and Perfect Plea

"Before the throne of God above
I have a strong and perfect plea.
A great high Priest whose Name is Love
Who ever lives and pleads for me.
My name is graven on His hands,
My name is written on His heart.
I know that while in Heaven He stands
No tongue can bid me thence depart."

Sometimes I go through spells, or phases if you will, with the way I praise God. Hold on, I know you may be ready to close this page and call me crazy, but I'm serious. My mind can't handle it when I really delve into what God has to offer, and even when I do focus on one thing I am often times brought to my knees and overwhelmed. Sometimes I have to take one facet at a time, trying to learn about that side and soak it in, letting it change me. I don't forget that God is much bigger than that one aspect, but I do let myself get lost in the sea of that one trait, and then remember that this is just one part. PRAISE GOD!

Right now I have been reading, thanks to Chip and Dave at Providence, in Hebrews where it talks about Christ being our Great High Priest. I have to say, God's word alone about this subject is enough to make me bounce in my seat like I have had two cups of Global Village coffee. I mean listen to this: (!!!)

For Christ has entered, not into holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true things, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf. Nor was it to offer himself repeatedly, as the high priest enters the holy places every year with blood not his own for then he would have had to suffer repeatedly since the foundation of the world. But as it is, he has appeared once for all at the end of the ages to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment, so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him. Hebrews 9:24-28

Christ was not only a High Priest. Christ was The High Priest. Before Him a mediator would have to make sacrifices for my sins multiple times within my lifetime. But Christ, Christ stepped in and became the sacrifice, became the mediator, became the reason I can boldly approach the throne of God. To top it all off, this sacrifice is one that covers our sin. Fully. Once our sin has been covered we do not have to go back for another sacrifice, do not have to find a way to clean up to come to the throne. My Jesus, He is enough. He is plenty. How often do I skim over this fact? THIS IS HUGE!!! Christ came once,once for our sins and when He returns, it will be to bring us home!

Oh man...I'm doing the bounce in my seat thing.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Height marked on a Wall

Oh my it has been a long while since I blogged. School is getting crazy, life is picking up, and to take thoughts from my journal and put them on here...that takes time that I don't have. It is something I want to try to do more often though, so don't give up on me!

Yesterday morning I sat in my little sister's room at 6 am and worked on homework, drinking coffee as my Dad painted it LIME green. It is part of her Christmas present from my Mimi to have her room redone, and my Daddy has NO time in his life to paint it, so Thanksgiving morning, that was his time. I also have about 6 projects on my plate right now that have to be done before I return to school, one of which involved research and could be done while talking. You see, Daddy and I talk over coffee EVERY morning. We have since I could drink coffee, and before that he made me hot chocolate and called it coffee. It is our time, before the world wakes up, to catch up and digest life. Together.

Yesterday we took time to talk about the door in Josie's room. Yes. The door. He was going to change the door and give her a "suweet new one," but he couldn't bring himself to do it. He couldn't even bring himself to paint this nasty, busted, drawn over door. That door looks like an old door, but on the side it holds the growth chart of the Edwards family, including Momma and Daddy from when Taylor, Josie, and I decided they needed to be measured too. I can stand next to that door and see when I stood knee height to myself. It is crazy. I can see when I hit my growth spurts, and when my growing leveled off. I can look back at heights and dates and remember stories that go with those times. I remember that day as the day Taylor and I ran down the hallway pulling eachother on blankets like sleds and got in trouble for crashing into the table and knocking over a picture frame. It was when she was blonde Taylor, with bouncy curls, HUGE dimples that took up her whole face, carried around her Barney stuffed animal all the time, and had a laugh that would make me do ANYTHING again. Oh, and I remember that Josie, she came up to right here on me, cried 24/7, and was Momma's baby. BUT, it was that Josie who ran around in her diaper, only her diaper, and a Native American headdress and had the whole family laughing, although she was 100% serious.

As Daddy and I were talking about those heights, dates, precious girls, and memories, they woke up one at a time and came in. Josie, rubbing her eyes and hearing us laughing walks in and says loudly, "You would have to be high to paint a room at 7 in the morning! This paint is making you high isn't it?" Taylor continues when she comes in by saying one line before she sits down. "Wow. Looks like a big booger in here." :D Ridiculous.

Each of those lines, each of those heights holds a million laughs that those little girls and I have shared. A million good times that make up for any sad, bad, angry, "downer" times (as Josie like to say.) The exciting part is that those laughs and great memories are only getting started for the three of us. My height marker has stopped, and Taylor's is slowing down, but we have so many memories to fit into that last line. Oh goodness, Josie just woke up...they are getting started now.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Everything in Between

I love the stillness of the morning. The way the whole world is calm. To hear the sound of my feet hitting the pavement, the wind moving through the trees, and my heart pounding. As I run, I can open my thoughts- meet with my God.

I love the chaos of the day- the way our living room holds so many people, some sitting on the couch, others on the floor. Looking around, I see the familiar faces of old friends, and the welcome faces of new guests. All are talking, all are laughing, all are genuinely loving. As I stand back, I can take it all in, realizing that this is what it is like to have a home away from home.

I love the time in between. Meeting a friend for coffee. Sitting with your roommate on the kitchen counter before classes, spilling your deepest fears and your greatest dreams. Laying in bed across the room from your roommate when you know you should be asleep sharing the stories of the day, the heartbreaks of the hour, and the victories of the moment. Making dinner with your best friend while discussing God's grace. The time when the world is moving, just at a slower pace.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Sunny with a chance of thunderstorms

When it rains while the sun is shining, I feel like the weather finally understands what it feels like to be me. I'm happy. I'm sad. I'm up and then I'm down. I am exhausted yet I really want to go for a run. But my question for you... Who doesn't love a good sunshiny drizzle? It might be a little crazy. You may not know whether to grab your Marmot or throw on those sunglasses. Here is my advice on how to deal with it. Just accept it. It probably isn't going to make up it's mind any time soon. It will surprise you, throwing you for a loop. Get ready for it.

Friday, October 23, 2009

A Heart of Humility

It is so sad, how sinful I am, yet so beautiful how much grace God shows.

This morning I woke up to a...not so clean kitchen/living room combo. When I went to bed, I saw it was a mess, but I assumed the dishes on the counter would be put in the DIRTY dishwasher, the food would be put away, and the plates would be rinsed off. I woke up to my worst nightmare. :)

I almost got very angry. This is something the girls and I have been talking about, and I was, honestly, very frustrated. In my head I knew I had two choices: 1. Yell like a crazy person when they woke up. 2. Talk about how I can't handle living in a zoo, and how the house needs to stay clean. Either way I knew my attitude was going to come across (something I wasn't sure I wanted to happen.) Then, I thought of a third, unheard of option. I clean up the mess. I show the body of Christ love by doing something I don't really want to do, and then I talk to my housemates, my closest friends about a small problem in our house. I love them in Christ through my actions, they hear my words because of that love and those actions. is where I begin to really disgust myself.

As I completed the task, closing the dishwasher and throwing away the last of the food, I caught myself thinking, "That was a pretty cool thing to do." WOW. I CAN'T EVEN SERVE CHRIST--> I CAN'T DO ANYTHING FOR HIM WITHOUT MY PRIDE GETTING IN THE WAY!! I turned an act of service to my God and His children into a self-serving, self-glorifying task. All this by thinking about it and analyzing it too much. Where is my humility? Did I even start out with the right motives?

Lord, cleanse this heart of pride, replacing it with a heart of humility, a heart of service that beats for You and Your people. Move me out of the way, and open my eyes to more ways, large or small, that I can serve You. Help me to me mindful of my reasons and my motives. May they be for Your glory alone.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

This Journey

Sometimes I’m afraid if I blink, I will miss it. I mean, it is all flying so fast. If I close my eyes it will all be gone. This time when I am young. When I stay up late and wake up early. When I am responsible for myself and only myself. When my network of friends is too many to count, but those I depend on fit on five fingers. In high school people said, “These are the best years of your life.” Boy were they wrong. College. College years are the best years a person can experience. They are challenging. They push you. They are so fun you can’t stand it. In one week you have more emotions than you can hold, more stress than you can handle, more responsibility than you can carry, more love than you expected, and more support than you ever imagined. You laugh more, cry more, and get over petty anger more than you ever thought you could. At the end of the day you are exhausted, and content. This may be a generalization. I dare say I am in the five percent who have such a perfect college experience. I am surrounded by people who make that experience. People who push me and pull me in every imaginable direction. People who I love with my whole heart, and others who I struggle to stay in the same room with. People who walk in a room and have every iota of attention in my body, and others who work so hard for my attention but rarely receive it. People who don’t deserve the time I give them but get so much, and people who are worthy of my full self but get skipped over because of my shallow eye. I am not perfect. I am broken. I am leaning on my savior's arms to get me through. I am struggling and trusting, but I am truly enjoying the ride.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009


Praise be to God,
who has not rejected my prayer
or witheld his love from me!

Psalm 66:20

We don't deserve the communication we have with God, so why do we take it for granted. Our prayers are not spoken and then forgotten. They are heard and acted upon. Why then, do we cease to pray? Why then do we run to other earthly havens in times of trouble, joy, sorrow? Why do we consider the ear of man far greater than the ear of God?

God, teach me how to pray without ceasing, to lift my voice to the heavens, and to trust that every word will be heard. May I keep this attitude of humble adoration as I pray to you. My words do not go unheard. Thank you.

Monday, June 22, 2009

At A Loss

In my downtime in Prague, and on those rainy afternoons, I have been spending my time reading a little C.S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters.
It is a composition of the letters of an older demon advising his younger nephew about how to tempt and try a man. The book has been one that has provided multiple stings to the heart, if you will, as I see myself in the text. As the older demon writes I see myself in the temptations he suggests. Lewis does an incredible job of describing how even the devil can use prayer to place a block between us and God. Screwtape, the older demon, says this: "When they meant to ask Him for charity, let them, instead, start trying to manufacture charitable feelings for themselves and not notice that this is what they are doing. When they meant to pray for courage, let them really be trying to feel brave. When they say they are praying for forgiveness, let them be trying to feel forgiven. Teach them to estimate the value of each prayer by their success in producing the desired feeling; and never let them suspect how much success or failure of that kind depends on whether they are well or ill, fresh or tired, at the moment." Wow. How often do we do this very thing? Did I not spend yesterdays prayer time asking to be forgiven, feeling as though I was not because of a lack of feeling? Our prayer lives, our communication with God, is even tainted by the sting of sin. I am just so glad that we have a Father on our side who knows this very fact, a Father who doesn't expect perfection from us, but who provided perfection on the cross. I am so thankful that the Holy Spirit can intercede where we do not know how, because before my God I do not even know how to speak.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Watching my Words

James 3:9-10
With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God's likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers, this should not be.

In James 3 JAMES talks about having control of the tongue. He illustrates how one small spark can start a whole fire, and how one small word can do the same. But how often do we go to church on Sunday morning and then slander our brothers that night? How often do we promise to pray for someone and turn around and use this as an opportunity to gossip about them? And by we, know that I mean I. God used this passage to convict me and remind me that my mouth is His and His alone. It should be used for His purpose and His glory. When we curse men, talking about them in a negative manner, we are in turn talking negatively about God's creation. May we learn to speak in a way that praises our Creator both directly and indirectly. Lord, help me to control my tongue, and may I do it for your glory. Amen.

Saturday, May 30, 2009


Since when are am I old enough? When did I cross that invisible line from child to adult? My friends are graduating from college and beginning their careers, others are getting married and starting families. I mean, even now I am sitting in a coffee shop halfway across the world. I just left my pension (by myself,) followed the map (by myself,) found this place with free wi-fi (by myself,) struggled to order a plain cup of coffee (by myself,) paid 25 ck (by myself,) and took a few minutes to just take in the scene, the suddenly familiar atmosphere of conversation that I don't understand in a world that I am growing to love. But when did I become ready to set out alone? I am fine with it, happy to be growing and learning and experiencing. I am just confused as to when it happened.
I remember being a kid and riding my bike to the store. That, for me, was being old enough. I remember taking off down the street alone, Miss Independent, sure of what I was doing. I remember forgetting to make a turn, getting to the end of the street, and panicking. I also remember turning around and seeing my dad in the car behind me. He had followed me to make sure I got there ok. I thought I was going alone, but really he was there all along, checking just to make sure I was going to be ok. Of course I was angry and embarassed. Why did he follow me? Why didn't he just let me do it alone? But something inside of me was grateful for his never ending support. And here, though he and my family aren't sitting outside of this coffee shop in the Czech Republic, I am thankful for their never ending support.
This doesn't, however, answer my initial question, since when am I old enough? The above situations I can handle. Being old enough to be on my own, old enough to make my own decisions, old enough to be me. I am not ready, however, to be me with someone else. A very close friend of mine got married while I was flying to Prague, and I just want to know, when did we become old enough to unite with another for the rest of our lives? When did we become ready to make every decision with another person in mind? Are we really ready to give selflessly in every action? Do we really know what love is? He didn't then. He acted like he did. He said he did. He certainly wrote about how he did. Only a few years separate that boy and this man.He didn't know how to love then, does he now? My mind just searches every corner for some sign, some telling fact that would show me that I am at that level in my life. Am I, too, old enough for such commitment? Then those corners of my mind whisper back the answer I knew all along. I know it is not about age. Age does not make you ready. What is it then? Will I know? Sometimes I feel like such a failure in this area. I feel like I can handle every area of my life, but my heart, no not my heart. That is the area that I keep trying to mend and repair. The area that I won't let anyone have.
This brings me back to the question I asked before, since when am I old enough? Well, I am and I am not. I don't know that one is ever old enough. That is the excitment of it all. You just step out, not knowing what you are doing or where you are going. In the process of doing, that is how you grow. That is how you become ready. So while I am not by any means ready now, I will be. Someday.

Words by Stephen Speaks that describe my heart in a way that I can't.

I can take it. I can move on.
But I still care for your letters.
I will make it. I can be strong.
But I still care for your letters.
Maybe someday. Maybe someday. Just not today.
Maybe someday. Just not today.
I could fake it. Maybe I should.
Because I still care for your pictures.
And I will make it. You knew I would.
But I still care for your pictures.
Maybe someday. Maybe someday. Just not today.
I said maybe someday. I said maybe someday.
Maybe someday I will be free from these memories that are haunting me.
Maybe someday I can take that box and put it outside my door.
I have accepted. This is how it should be. But I still can’t throw away your letters.
And I’m as happy as I could be. But I still can’t throw away your letters.
Maybe someday. Maybe someday. Just not today.