Small Victories

Disclaimer: I wrote this post about a month ago, yet its words remain true. The smallest moments bring me the most joy, such as now, sleeping on my stomach with minimal discomfort, or stretching without fear of shocking pain. Sometimes God might not be visible (to us) working in the big ways, but He is always, always present in the small victories. We just need to be focused on Him to see them. 

One of the best parts of treading through the trenches is that victories can be found in the smallest of moments.

I was delighted yesterday morning when I woke up with no pain! It was amazing! I pulled myself up from the recliner and realized that I had just spent my last night sleeping in our public space. Finally! I though jovially, I will be able to sleep in my own room! It really is the small victories that make all the difference in life.

Grabbing my pillows and blanket, I shuffled upstairs to my bedroom. Oh how I missed you, I thought. Though it is less than half decorated (as the majority of my belongings are still stored in Kentucky) it still feels like home to me. It is an incredibly freeing feeling to no longer invade my roommates spaces. Creating a nook out of pillows and blankets on the floor, my heart nestled into its sweet home. “Down-to-earth,” as I call it, my comfort in sitting on the floor. Especially when I journeying through the valleys, I prefer the floor to a couch or a bed. Call me weird, but it’s just the way I am – so I’ll embrace it.

Floor weird

Setting my previous week’s word “PRAY” back in my word jar, I reached in and pulled out two. Relieved, I smiled as I read “SHINE” and “You are beautiful”. That day would be a day of small victories indeed!

right words

God blesses us with all sorts of small victories in the Bible – truths to helps us get to life’s bad, mediocre, and even good days. The right words have a way of finding us when we need them the most. I subscribe to My Daily Armor Ministries and they send me a Scripture a day. On my day of small victories, I received Psalm 37:4 (I added on verse 5 for good measure).

“Delight yourself also in the Lord, And He shall give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord, Trust also in Him, And He shall bring it to pass.” Psalm 37:4-5

Words of Truth. Small victories. Some days these victories come in brightly colored packages like yesterday when I was overwhelmed with good scripture, encouraging words of the day, a walk in the rain, a minute of running, season 3 of Good Witch available on Amazon (and with a coupon Amazon sent me, it was half price!), watching Table 19 and musing at how it was significantly better than even my already high hopes 🙂 and falling asleep in my own room on an insta-bed.

Today was more mundane. Seeking a few personal victories, I experienced joy as I wrote some poetry and worked on my short story fiction piece. Remembering the truths of yesterday’s Scripture, I will delight in the Lord, and the joys He has provided me. Though my job and car searches came up empty today, I will trust in Him, and HE SHALL bring it to pass.

I can feel God inching me from struggle to small victories to something grand that will ultimately bring Him glory. Slowly, but surely God will get me there ❤

P.S. I now have a car, well small SUV! God’s providing, one puzzle piece at a time.

. . .

Be encouraged, and seek out the small victories that God has presented in your life!


Used to Be

I am a worn shell,

Unable to scrape together what I used to be.

These days it’s very evident,

How much I miss Kentucky.

. . .

Even if I wanted to,

I couldn’t go back to who I used to be.

Too much has happened, too much has changed,

To be who I was in Kentucky.

. . .

Where does a shell go when it ceases to exist?

As I clearly miss her who I used to be:

Her heart to serve and her proximity to

All those she loves in Kentucky.

. . .

Here I sit on my favorite dock,

On the edge of who I used to be.

Glancing calmly across the lake,

Wondering why I left Kentucky?

. . .

God has a plan, this I know.

For He made me who I used to be.

He brought me there to love and heal,

And then He asked me to leave Kentucky.

. . .

Emotions overwhelm and tears embrace,

As my heart cries out for who I used to be.

This broken shell can’t seem to grasp,

Letting go of the Kentucky me.

. . .

I’ll never forget the people I love –

For they shaped me into who I used to be.

Though I left them behind, they’ll stay in my heart –

The people of Kentucky.

. . .

Today begins a new journey,

As I seek out who I’ll be used to be.

Surrendering all my heart and hopes to You,

I freely give this shell of Kentucky.

. . .

Moving forward I’ll trust that You’ll transform

Me into who You want me to be.

An empty shell can only be filled.

Create in this, the new me.

. . .

I cannot see the future.

I do not know how You’ll use me to be.

All I can do is follow You.

And give You all of me.

. . .

It’s not much I must admit,

This shell of who I used to be.

But from nothing You birthed everything.

I’ll trust You’ll do the same for me.

. . .

The waters heal, the waters clean.

Purify all that should not be.

A new day dawns, a new light shines.

Blue skies clear – gray clouds no longer shadow me.

. . .

Adventure awaits along the lonely seas.

Calm the waves inside of me.

Strengthen me against the wind,

And use me in Your Will to be.


Summers of Unfiltered Love

Close your eyes and allow God to lead you to your ultimate place of peace. Look around, what are the sights, smells, sensations that engulf you? Breathe in deeply, and breathe out. Now open your eyes. Where were you taken? What details were you most drawn to that helped you feel God’s presence?


Summer, for me, always includes my ultimate place of peace. McCarthy Beach State Park is nestled in the woods of Northern Minnesota. True to my native state’s knowhow, this campground was on the shores of Side Lake which was connected by small water passageways to several other lakes. When life takes me far away from peace, I still close my eyes and find myself there.

Closing my eyes, I feel refreshed. Crisp, cold water laps against my legs creating a spread of goosebumps from my feet to my fingertips. My skin is warmed by the sun shinning, its light brightened by a cloudless, blue sky. A cool, gentle wind breezes through my short, layered hair, chilling my bare neck. Unexpectedly, my foot jerks up as a fish suctions its lips to tickle my toes. Breathing in slowly and deeply, I sense my favorite aroma: campfires, nature, lake water, and slight essence of fish.

I hear birds singing in the trees as the leaves rustle along the breeze. In the distance, I hear a loon’s lonesome call. 

This humble campground is where I feel God’s presence most strongly. Amidst His creation’s natural praise, far away from man’s inventions, and distraction-free, I hear His whisper of love through the silences. No word-filled proclamations or grand gestures, but presence, peace and God’s loving touch as a breeze passes by or through the brisk waters that lap against my bare legs.

From day-trips to the long-weekends of my youth, my mind drifts off to the memories. This lake-side campground would abound in laughter, lunacy, and the most beautiful forms of unfiltered love. We little ones would listen to the life stories of our elders as we would dream of our futures. As we grew older, we’d share the trials we faced, and soul connections would strengthen in the light of a star-filled sky. My mouth waters as I remember the fragrance of fresh-caught crappies frying over a campfire. Quickly, we’d devour this palatable product of a patient day. My adrenaline begs to rush as I remember the exhilaration of tubing behind a boat pulled by one of the fathers of the trip. He always loved testing our limits. Taking a sharp turn, we’d fling into a toppling frenzy. Water and rubber-burned, we’d laugh away the pain and climb up on the tube for another challenge.

Summer crushes healed our wounds and kept us warm in the chill of the night. There was always someone to admire. More beautiful than His natural creations are those He made in His image. The conversations we shared late into the night only fed into the allure of a summer romance. As a marshmallow oozes its guts over the heat of the campfire, so would my insides melt with proximity to my seasonal crush. Unfortunately, these hopes never became anything s’more than a marshmallow, chocolate, and graham crackers “crushed” together into a sweet mental treat. Then we would slumber, huddled deep into the warmth of our sleeping bags. Eased into sleep by our memories of the day, fire-hot fantasies would simmer into dreams and fade away into the abyss of the night.

Waking up fresh and renewed, I’d find my way to my favorite T-shaped dock in the dim dawn light. Though my evenings were spent admiring boys, my mornings were spent admiring God. Finding the perfect spider-free spot, I’d simply sit and breathe in the presence of my Father who loves me. With a dew-damp quilt wrapped around my legs, my pen would dance praises along the lines of my journal.  The birds and trees worship their Creator in adoration harmony alongside the quiet, still lake. Clouds coat the sky as rays of light shine through the darkness. Another day begins, with the peace of His presence within.

if life was a beach – therapy


I love being in a place,

surrounded by people,

simply being.

All of us at our finest,

simple existence.

Free from work troubles,

finances, and any of the worries

of life – just free.

Funny, it is, the way we live.

Working so hard and long,

wasting away so much that we must

find a place, in or near,

the middle of nowhere to disconnect,

and exist in community.

Breathing deeply,

and exhaling, renewed.

Doing all things that we love that don’t fit into our busy schedules.


Soaking up the sun,

Listening to the sounds of nature,








to the still,

small voice.

Here it doesn’t have to fight for attention.

Here it can be heard.

Amongst the leaves and the breeze,

the songs of birds, calls of loons, and the glurps of fishes.

It is heard in the late night whispers,

and uninterrupted conversations – finally made time for.

In connections with old friends,

or striking conversations with new ones.

Free, together, we are at our finest,

and the still, small voice is heard.

We are calm.

The therapy of sand sifting through our toes,

and refreshing, brisk waves enveloping our souls.

As we swim away our worries,

and our fears.

Here, we are free.

If life was a beach,

we would all be lovers (not haters)

this I guarantee.

We would be givers (not takers).

Freely investing in each other’s lives,

we would become the best possible versions of ourselves.

If life was a beach.

If all the ground we treaded upon

was sand, we would be strong.

Persevering through the heat,

and swift through the cold,

we would continue onward.

Footprints left behind

we could see when we were carried.

Easily, we could track the lost,

and follow until they were found.

If all the ground was sand.

If all the broken was water,

we indeed would be healed.

Mind, body, and soul.

Our thirst quenched.

Our scum washed clean.

Sleeplessness would exist nary,

as mother earth would calm us,

into an eternal-like slumber.

If all broken was water.

If all wrongs turns were right turns,

We would never get lost.

No longer would we fret

about where we were going,

or how long it’d take us

to get there.

We would just go,

and be,

and turn as we please.

If all wrong turns were right turns.

If life was a beach,

we’d simply follow the water:

enhancing our muscles in the sand,

healing our broken in the water,

and not ever (like ever),

wonder where we were wandering,

or how fast we could get there.

If life was a beach.



Beautiful, Seen, and Cherished



I’ve always loved dying flowers.

Especially more than those in full bloom. 

They are a tragically, beautiful reminder of how fragile life is.

Here one moment, and gone the next.

Losing my father and most of my grandparents at young ages, I’ve learned to treasure life – not just life, but the people that life presents.

Over the past several weeks, I’ve had the privilege of unexpectedly, reconnecting with old friends, making business acquaintances, and spending an honorable amount of time with family. In these moments, I’ve reminded myself to cherish each and every moment – because just as the flowers bloom and fade away – moments are here in the now and gone with the morning.

Nearly three weeks ago at my favorite place on earth, McCarthy Beach, I ran into an incredibly kind family that I knew growing up. The father of the clan asked my friend and I to take their family photo, on my favorite dock of all places, and in the next moment we made the connection of who we all were. His son graduated with my brother, and one of his daughters I remembered from our choir days. Both of them came to visit for a moment and I must say it was a breathe of incredibly fresh air. They both had grown up spectacularly and seemed to be in places or callings that set their hearts ablaze. I love that – meeting people that are in their element. Beautiful, beautiful family, and I am so thankful to have crossed their path a few times over that weekend.

The following weekend I spend at car dealerships. For me, this generally isn’t an exciting experience. But I thought about the previous weekend, and how God had perfectly blessed it with the presence of old friends… I had wondered why the reconnecting occurred for only moments, and not hours or days. Why grant me only a glimpse of such wonderful people? Why purchase a bouquet of flowers? I felt God nudge. In the moment, flowers can bring such joy and peace, and even when they have wilted, we can still remember the way they once added beauty to our lives.

The beauty of mankind – much grandeur than the most flourishing petals can evoke such radiance within the soul.

That was my goal, while car-shopping – to evoke some sort of beauty within the lives of the car salesmen. This mostly existed through kindness, patience, gratitude and complimenting their exceptional customer service skills (only to those that were exceptional, of course).

It’s important to fully grasp and experience the emotions that people kindle in our souls. Sometimes all it takes is a friendly wave, impeccable eye contact, kindness, or the simplest act of service to remind us that we too are beautiful, that we are seen, and that we too need to be cherished. Because none of us last forever.

This past week has be overflowing with an abundance of family time. Cousins that I haven’t seen in years… nearly all of them, I’ve reconnected with for a catch-up conversation or a coffee. Enjoying the musical stylings of the incredibly talented step-brother with such an open and creative soul. An aunt in from states away providing weeks of giddy giggles and goofiness, that I wouldn’t trade for the world. And though I’d much rather live in the beautiful home that I pay rent for, I will admit, I find this time with my parentals quite treasurable. Not to mention short, but sweet FaceTimes with my beloved nieces states away (though the gleeful visit of their whole family wasn’t too long passed either).

Moments are fleeting. People are fleeting. And in this ever changing, crazy fast-paced world, it is all the more important to make connections with the people we care about. God gave us each other, that’s all we’ve got. I say we cherish each other, and do our darn best to let each other know – that we are beautiful, we are seen, and we are cherished.

What flowers, or people, has God blessed you with recently? Did you feel their presence kindle joy, peace, energy, healing within your soul? Do they know that they are beautiful, seen, and cherished in your life?

Sometimes, all we need to be reminded of is the power of moments, because a smile, hug, or compliment – ever so fleeting – can make a lasting difference.





Soul Structure

Heaven to me is a platform made of boards,

stretching from land to sea. This place is where I want to be…


. . .

It floats on the waters that

my Savior walked upon.

Steady as ever, sinking never…


. . .

Rain or shine,

it stands firm.

Through winter’s snows

it must return…

To land.

. . .

Floating with the tide and

waves passing gently.

Healing waters come and go.

Heal me waters to and fro.

. . .

Made with wood,

as was the cross,

this T-shaped altar

gazing into the sea,

is where you’ll

always find…



Thank You, Friends

Dearest family, friends, readers, and admirers 🙂

I just wanted to extend a plethora of gratitude for all your prayers, thoughts, love, and healing vibes. I am excited to proclaim that after three treacherous weeks and more recently, a weekend at my favorite place on earth, I’m finally feeling human again! Even better, I’m feeling like myself! It has been a rough journey indeed, and I will still appreciate thoughts and prayers as I venture through the tangles of insurance, and continue to persevere through driving anxiety – I can’t do any of this alone! Prayer changes things indeed!

Early last week I hit my lowest point. Attaining an inexplicable exhaustion and feeling ill for a couple days, I shared my very ugly thoughts and feelings with the Lord. He heard it all – the pain, anger, frustrations, fears, hopes, desires, and tears. It was not fun, but it was necessary. And God lovingly listened to it all. What a Savior.

I’m so happy to admit that the past three days I’ve spent nearly 2-3 hours each day being physically active, including my usual speed of walking (swiftly), wading in the water, hiking, and even basketball!!! This morning I shot hoops for forty minutes, and it was simply the best thing ever! Pain-free!!! God is so good!

This weekend I found myself at my favorite place on earth, twice. On Saturday, with one of my best friends, I sported my new “NOT TODAY SATAN” red V-neck t-shirt, and lived with that motto! I did not settle for anything less than God’s best for me ❤ He presented me with so many truly wonderful gifts: quality time with my bestie, a short hike in the forest, a walk in the water on the sandiest of beaches, a long drive on country roads, ice-cream, reuniting with old friends, pizza and beer at my favorite bar with great tunes from a local band, and God ended the evening with the most marvelous of sunsets. On the drive home, we enjoyed a mashup of lightening and fireworks. God is so great!

On Sunday, after visiting the church I grew up in ❤ I felt God urge me to return. The sun was shining, and it seemed bound to be another beautiful day, so I decided to take the risk. It was indeed a risk because it was the longest drive I’d driven since the accident. Taking many deep breathes, I drove the hour and half there, and even enjoyed most of it! Jamming out to the mix I created to get myself back into the swing of things, I enjoyed the windows-down drive to my favorite place on earth. As a reward promising to comfort me after my drive home that evening, I bought myself a new McCarthy Beach sweatshirt, the one I had been eyeing the previous day. God’s blessings were abundant on Sunday as well: long walks around the campground, inspiration for writing on the beach, a couple hours spent on my favorite dock – writing, soaking up the sun, and making friends with a a very intelligent 9-year old fisherman – picturesque scenes, and seeing old friends once again 🙂 God is the greatest!!!

I am so blessed to have a Savior that loves me so well.

I am also so blessed to have every single one of you love me so well.

Thank you so much for joining me on this journey, and for your continued prayers!

❤ ❤ ❤

May you have an abundantly blessed Fourth of July!!!

Thank you, friends!