Just Call Me Clarkette

Just Call Me Clarkette

This is a re-post (edited) from a couple of years ago. As we started decorating for Christmas this year, the lessons learned came to mind and it was time to revisit. Enjoy… and Merry Christmas! ———– Just Call Me Clarkette I am the light person in the family. It’s always Mommy’s job to “hurry up” and get the lights on the tree so the rest of the family can jump in and decorate it. Just call me Clarkette Griswold. Well… one night a couple of years ago was not an easy, calm stringing of the lights… but instead a wrestling match between the bulbs and me! It was just one of those whatever-can-go-wrong-will-go-wrong type situations. First, as I walked around the tree stringing up the lights, somehow the plug got caught under the stand and twisted. Okay, back up and un-string. Breathe. Let’s start again. Then it happened AGAIN! Seriously, I don’t think this has ever happened before. So after the screaming and falling on the floor trying to get the tangles undone, finally the lights were on the tree! Yay! Time to plug them in! So here’s where it got really interesting. The star at the top lit up, but not one of the 400 or so bulbs on the tree came on. Wait. I KNOW I TESTED THESE THINGS! From there, you know what I had to do. I checked each bulb, twisted some in tighter, tested other outlets, and finally got to a point where HALF of each of the two strands were lit. This is still a mystery to me. Now, if you were on Facebook that...
With Your Mercy I Collide

With Your Mercy I Collide

Sometimes I realize that I just need to start writing. This is one of those times. Neglect, lack of focus, laziness… whatever you want to call it… has kept me from sitting still and typing out words from my heart. Everyday I use the keys on the keyboard for work, but it’s when I sit down to process life that I come alive. So here I am again. It’s been a while. With Your mercy I collide. Have you ever felt alone? Maybe you have close friends, plus a circle of semi-close friends, plus maybe you are surrounded by people who love you… yet you feel completely 100% alone. I get there more often than I care to admit. When I really analyze what I’m feeling, I see that most of my loneliness comes from a wrong perspective. It comes from trying to fill the lonely void with people, with things, with work. The lonely void can only be filled up with God. Knowing this and living it are two different things. With Your mercy I collide. Last week, I was blessed to be a part of the Leading and Loving It Re:Treat conference. If you have followed this blog over the years, you know that I have a lyrical soul and you probably have learned how music speaks to me like nothing else. While we were at the conference, one specific song stood out to me; and tonight, as I feel alone because of again trying to “please the masses,” I’m reminded of who I am. Listen to the song through this youtube video as you read the...
Anchored Hope… A New Day

Anchored Hope… A New Day

I’ve always wanted a tattoo, even back in my college days when I wanted two tennis racquets crossed over my ankle. Then there was a time when I wanted a guitar with a cross… same place – over my ankle. For that one, I went so far as to have a tattoo artist draft a design. But throughout the 20+ years since college, in all of those instances, something kept me from following through. This was going to be a permanent ink spot, after all. Fast forward to a couple of months ago when I finally took the plunge. My heart had still been wrestling back and forth over several options, all within the same theme. What I chose to have inked permanently above my right ankle has proven to be a reminder that I cling to every single day. Anchored. Hope. “This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and steadfast and one which enters within the veil.” – Hebrews 6:19 The hope we have in Jesus is the only hope that will never let us down. When I sat down to write this post, I realized that it’s been almost a year since I’ve written anything here. Quite honestly, I haven’t been writing at all. For those of you who have followed Grow Where You’re Planted for the past several years, you may remember this post when I wrote about my top 3 that keep me grounded: Time with God, Writing, and Running. And you may also remember that I later added a 4th – Music. So much can change in...
When It Hurts To Breathe

When It Hurts To Breathe

I don’t get knocked down by sickness very easily; but when the doctor calls and says the X-ray showed Pneumonia, it’s time to stop trying to be so strong. I’m now on the 7th day of antibiotic, and I’ve done pretty well with working on stuff for a while, resting for a while. It has hurt to breathe. Each breath, each cough, seemingly bruising my fluid-swollen lung… more. The parallel is amazing. Life has sucked the breath out of me lately. It’s been hard to breathe figuratively, and then it became hard to breathe literally. Some days I so want to quit. Stop trying. Just cry. Then I feel like a failure. And cry some more. Just worn down. Life is hard. Harder than I ever imagined it would be. So this morning as I was driving, God took my mind to the crucifixion. Asphyxiation. The fact that Jesus endured the most awful hard-to-breath experience. With each breath, He must have felt that He was dying… even though it wasn’t time to let go. He went through the unimaginable for me… for you. He died, but then He came back to life! Who am I to be beaten down by a little pneumonia? Who am I to be beaten down by the cares in MY life? So here it is. I have hope today. Not because of me or anything that I have done. I can get through this because HE is in me. He is WITH me. He is my STRENGTH. Does it hurt for you to breathe? Is life so overwhelming that you want to quit? Don’t....
The Rock That Is Higher Than I {Re-Post}

The Rock That Is Higher Than I {Re-Post}

This is the fourth time I’ve shared this post in four years. Sometimes scriptures ring so true in our lives. So true that God uses those very scriptures to get us through all kids of difficulties. Psalm 61:1-3 is one of those for me. Today, precious friends of ours are starting cancer treatment. They have been on my mind a lot this morning. Other friends of ours are feeling overwhelmed because of just the trials in life. We… ourselves… our little family, are also walking through an overwhelming time… perhaps a more quiet one. But God. Two of my favorite words in scripture. But God. So here’s this post again… meaning something different this time, yet still the same. May it speak to your heart today, no matter what you’re going through. ——— Life gets overwhelming. If you’re like me, days just seem to stack on top of each other… then one day suddenly you realize another year has passed. Sometimes, though life is busy, everything seems to flow together in perfect harmony. But other times, the overwhelmed feeling hits like a 95mph wild pitch against a batting helmet. Maybe you are there right now. The pitch has hit you. You’re feeling overwhelmed… as am I. The harmonies aren’t quite coming together as they should. Sickness… Work… Relationships… Ministry stuff… Perhaps at this moment, you’re looking at the conglomeration that is your life and saying, “I just don’t know how to work through all of this.” Or maybe life is good, but you are facing a task that is overwhelming you. Maybe the complicated nature of your project is paralyzing you,...
RE:FOCUS – Just Be Held

RE:FOCUS – Just Be Held

For two months straight, the song seemed to be playing EVERYWHERE. In the car, at home, in places that play Jesus music. One line specifically kept calling to me… “Your world’s not falling apart; it’s falling into place.” It was literally like God was trying to get my attention. At the time, I had no idea why. Then came an unexpected opportunity for my life to fall apart. But God. When the trial hit, I immediately knew why God had placed this amazing song in my path over the past weeks. He was getting me to rely on HIM alone. Only He could fix the broken parts. And I know He is fixing them and will continue to fix them until His plan is fulfilled. I’ve never been so happy for a year to finish. 2015 is a year I would like to forget, although there are many lessons I’ll take with me. At midnight on December 31st, I welcomed 2016 with much hope and joy. But I have friends who are not so hopeful about 2016. One precious family in our lives is beginning the year facing cancer. Two other families are facing the reality of divorce… with young children. I know there are many of you who are not so expectant about 2016, but I just want to share what I learned about just being held. Life is hard and it hurts sometimes. Let’s face it, bad things happen to good people. We are all pieces in God’s perfect plan for humanity, and we are fallen. And sometimes when life hurts, you find out who your true friends...