Sunday, December 28, 2014

in which i remember the best of 2014...

when you have journeyed through a dark, difficult year, it is easy to lose sight of the best.
to uncover the treasures stored deep in your heart.  
to reflect on the moments that took your breath away.  
to call to mind the special memories that were made.
to unwrap the grace of the gifts bestowed on us and stand amazed.

this morning, with a girl fighting fever and me with a fresh resolve to do more of what i love in the new year, i write.
straight from my kitchen with a hot cup of coffee and prayers whispered as light as the steam that dances above my mug.

in an effort to uncover the treasures of this year, i am rolling up my sleeves and digging deep.
i am tossing aside all the junk that buried this year in darkness and slowly, gently, purposefully remembering the grace given to me.

cozy up with me.  so that you may begin to uncover and remember the grace given you this year.

do you see them?  piled high in the corner of your heart?
glimmering in the recesses of your soul?
the grace of it all?

might we share those moments so we don't lose sight?
perhaps we relish them before they are long forgotten?
and in remembering, joy fills our spirits and cast out the darkness once and for all.

best laugh?

when your diddy calls and needs a favor on a friday night, you never expect to be picking through the rubble of an old landmark to find bricks in the pouring rain with your sister-in-friend and husband.  but the memories made and the laughs we still have were well worth the discomfort of inconvenience and unlikely circumstances.

best habit?

hands down, meeting with Jesus in the quiet moments to still my soul.  i can't say i always get it right, but i can say that it always blows my mind and fills my heart.


best hard thing?

on a daily commute, it can be hard to position your heart to seek the grace in all the hard things.  but one day, truth springs forth in the midst of hardness and you know in an instance His grace can penetrate any surface.

best reunion?

when you spot her across the room and tears spill, you know a piece of your heart has come home. embraced in reunion, only your best friend understands your heart in a way that makes you feel whole. the face-to-face time may be few and far between, but the moments last a lifetime.

best cup of coffee?

the warmth of the mug may warm your hands, but the sweet conversation with girlfriends warm your soul.  sometimes women's ministry looks like a coffee shop and tastes like a pumpkin spice latte.

best gift?

when you have spent the majority of your years anticipating what is to be given to you and finding yourself always gravely disappointed, you realize your priorities are all wrong.  the best gift is never the one you hold in your own hands.  rather, it is found in what you give away.

best book?

you read an excerpt and instantly knew this was the book you wish you had read all those years ago.  and so you text the youth pastor and let him know this would be a fantastic read for your high school girls.  little did you know, it would be the salve you needed for wounds that still inflict pain.

best surprise?

the look on your favorite girl's face when you show up at Disney on Ice is a priceless gift your heart will always treasure.

best first?

it is below freezing outside and you are running on less than four hours of sleep with a house full of high school girls.  you are bound for a conference and you have no idea how to get the church bus to crank.  let alone, you have never driven anything quite so large.  and as an added bonus, you forget to latch the door properly and it flings wide open in route to the conference.  whoops!

best answered prayer?

for years, you feel the call.  the unmistakable call to live out matthew 28:19.  attempts to ignore the call leave your spirit deflated.  and the pounding of your heart beats harder at the thought of actually obeying.  and so, you fill out the paperwork, sign on the dotted line and tell God 'YES!'  here i am, Lord.  send me.  in the process of fundraising, you get to try on some killer jammies.

best change?

six years under the same roof and nothing has changed.  and then, one day you get a wild hair to spice things up a bit.  the results make your heart so happy you can hardly stand it.
best trip?

you haven't had a week off since August 2013, but a romantic weekend getaway with your man was just what you needed to remember all the many reasons why you fell in love with the one who stole your heart.   the two of you return to your honeymoon destination to recapture the romance that threatens to extinguish with work and kids and responsibility.  and in the midst of the weekend, you remember why your hearts are committed to each other forever and always.

best date?

he rang the doorbell with a flower in hand.  her feet bounded down the hallway and flung wide open the door to reveal her prince.  and then he picked her up and spun her around, as a mama's heart melted right there in the middle of floor.

best bucket list experience?

all you know is you need comfortable shoes.  and your stomach does flip flops wondering where on earth you are going.  when you pull up to the stables, you remember your bucket list and ponder how he could possibly still surprise you after all these years.  his heart floors you and you fall deeper in love.

best cold drink?

one with your name on it, naturally.  and one shared with a sweet friend.

best celebrity sighting?

the older i get, the less enamored i become with hollywood.  rather, i am more enthralled with men and women who pursue Jesus and strive to help others do the same.  and every once in a while, Jesus orchestrates the opportunity to meet a fellow sister in Christ and tell her how much her walk has spurred you along.  you share a quick hug with an awesome aussie as your heart threatens to explode.

best worship experience?

30,000+ people all proclaiming His great name.  the end.

best outside your comfort zone moment?

feeding an animal with my bare hands.  there ain't enough hand sanitizer in the world.  the things we will do for our children continues to astound me.

best anti-aging regime?

hanging out with high school girls will totally keep you hipster.  even if you don't know how to use the term correctly.  these girls keep me laughing.  i love them with my whole heart.  

what was the best grace you were given this year?
i am all ears.  i adore you.  and i want you to remember and reflect on your best from this year. 
there were dark days.  and hard days.  and days you want to forget.
but in the midst of it all, there was a whole lot of grace.

share with me, won't you?

the first five people to comment will receive a copy of The Best Yes by Lysa TerKeurst. and as an added bonus, you all are invited to join us on wednesday nights starting in january as we begin to uncover the best yes in our lives for 2015.  

on your mark.
get set.


  1. Loved reading through your year! Makes me feel like I was there! Can't wait to hug your neck in March!

  2. What a beautiful read. Brought tears to my eyes. Thanks for sharing.