Thursday, December 31, 2009


If I was going to be able to get to a computer at 12:00 am, I would so be writing a blog post, but since that ain't gonna happen, let me write now . . .


I'm so excited!!!!!! I love "new." The resolutions will be coming quickly [hopefully].I hope you enjoy the last few grains of 2009! May the dawning of 2010 bring you into His presence! See you in the New Year . . . <3

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Two Thousand Nine Review

The last grains of time are slowly falling down the hourglass, and I'm amazed. How the years fold and stack up so quickly. It's amazing. This has been a wild year. I'm trying to brainstorm some of the happenings. Hmm . . .

This was the year I became a SENIOR!!! Um, WOOT!

I started blogging . . . that was a new deal. [This is the first time I can blog through a New Year! Oh Yeah!!!]

I visited Asbury College and Multnomah University. . .

My family and I took a road trip to Yellowstone and Mt. Rushmore. That was a lot of driving. And I didn't throw-up. Not even once. [Now for someone who is semi-prone to car sickness, this is a master accomplishment people!]

I went to my first high school formal, my first senior class retreat, had my first awful year of not being able to go to my church camp, played Mary in my Church's Christmas pageant ---> first time EVER!

I worked a whole summer watching 2 kiddos.

I learned about trust. Oh how I'm learning. I haven't arrived, but I'm trying to figure it out. I'm learning that Jesus is so trustworthy, but the jump's hard. Always.

Oh oh oh, I got postcards from ANN KIEMEL!!! One of my favorite authors. Love this woman! She's one of the bloggers I follow. Oh how she blessed me, encouraged me.

I got to see one of my dear friends from Oregon in Kentucky! How fun!

This was the year Paul Nisely came and spoke at my church . . . how he shook us up, gave the opportunity and reminder to surrender.

Pastor Phil came to Fairview! Wow! Pretty exciting to have a new fellow on board at my church . . . excited to see where God will take us.

This was the year of taking Weight Lifting with an all-boys class, except for me and my teacher. :) haha ;) One of my favorite memories of that was when Teacher surprised me with a cake and the boys singing Happy Birthday to me. Oh how I love them. That seriously made my day!!! And two girls made me a cake. I got presents, cards. Felt so blessed. Was so blessed. What a special gift. I wish they could know how special they made me feel . . .

This was the year Daddy took me out to eat on Valentine's day, and we picked out my purity ring. <3

Another highlight was helping with Vacation Bible School and bringing two squirmy, beautiful little kiddos. They got so into it. Beauty.

And then there were the constant threads that were spun through this year: Friend's Letters, love from family, laughter with cousins, funny moments, painful moments, tears, victory. That's the color of life, no?

And in the end, when I've been faithless, He's still been faithful. Where I've failed, He's remained pure. Holy. Rock Solid. Oh "what is man . . . ?"

Here's my rough draft review of a good year. I'm so excited for a new year, new beginnings. New Years is one of my favorite holidays. New Years Resolutions are my weakness. I'll try to share some of mine with you when I come up with a list. Maybe you can keep me accountable?? ;) Adios!

Monday, December 28, 2009


I have so much to be thankful for . . .

336. Frosty boughs

337. Being with family for Christmas

338. Sunshine . . . a gift

339. Love that prompted wrapped packages

340. Christmas music after Christmas

341. A brand spankin' new ESV Bible!

342. The way God teaches my heart to beat newly

343. Delicious Christmas meals

344. Kids blowing out candles on Jesus' birthday cake

345. His wide-eyes . . . recounting.

346. Encouraging Christmas reads from people like Ann Voskamp found here and here also and precious people like Kayla, a girl that I don't know, but so appreciate from following her blog. These people encouraged me to remember the real reason of beautiful Christmas.

347. The unimaginable love of God that would cause Him to give Himself for us, for dirty, mangled, dying humans. Wow. . .

348. That I completed two homemade aprons!!! Yes! First time EVER!!! Are you proud, Grandma?! :)

349. String duos and trios

350. For each season as it comes . . . and that Jesus walks me through each one. alleluia.

Merry Today! :) And Jesus? Thank You . . .


I marveled at the world Saturday, at the way the frost clung to the slender branches, the way the sun shined and made the earth sparkle, the blue of the sky, the green of the grass. Mom and I took a walk, and my lungs gasped for oxygen, and I was so glad to be alive. While my family and I were having lunch, I looked outside our kitchen window . . . we really do have an extravagant view, . . . and I thought about the trees and the earth and how these takes each season as it comes. Of course it doesn't have much choice. Of course it probably doesn't know better. But still . . .

I'm not very good at that. I'm learning that my patience level is quite low. I want to experience things now. I'm so excited for college and finding him and getting to know him and getting married and having a family and well, for other seasons of my life. I feel like I'm growing and outstretching this cocoon. And growing hurts. But I kinda have this inkling that maybe I need to slow down a little, that maybe I'm missing out. I'm missing out on the now, on the season of winter where the frost clings and life can be cold and hard, but there's beauty here and the sunshine feels so much warmer against the cold and I feel alive and joyful. I'm living in winter where the fog sometimes does keep me from seeing beyond me, but where I'm at is beautiful too, and I think it's where God wants me now. Maybe not later, but now. Spring will come, and it will be glorious, but I don't want to miss winter. I don't want to miss the snow and the cold and the grace and the joy of Jesus walking with me Today. I don't want to run through this. I want to wade it out. Wade the joys of being [insert age here . . . smile], of being absolutely single, of being in high school, and living at home. Wade through the times of uncertainty and the hope that God knows, and that's all I need to know sometimes. I can live in tomorrow another day, but I only have December 28, 2009 once, and then it's gone. I want to minimize the regrets of tomorrow . . . so shalt I live . . . today.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Christmas After December 25

K-LOVE is still bringing on the Christmas classics even after the day, and I'm quite enjoying it. You know, it's incredible to me how commercialism dates Christmas December 25, and shortly after, the Christmas ads are pulled from the T.V. screens, the stores are packing in their Valentine's cupids and conversation hearts, and the focus changes. Christmas becomes a point on a time line, a sterile, round spot, and when it's over, the majority of America crashes, depressed and weary and wondering why there's such a feeling of emptiness. Yay for K-Love letting Christmas spill over December 25! because . . . Point A) it makes the ending of Christmas less depressing and Point B) it reminds me that Christmas is so much more than a date; it's somewhat the beginning of one of the most crazy world-rescue missions ever put into motion.

Pastor Phil gave the message at my church last Sunday, and one question he asked us was whether or not Christmas was a historical event or a present day event (?). I'm learning that it's a present day event. Christmas is about Christ coming here, into our heart-ache, our brokenness, our unknown tomorrows, our trashy secrets, our fear, our dirt, our hearts. It's the beginning of a journey of Love transforming Himself to wear our skin, to look like one of us, and to change us forever. It's Him meeting us where we're at, on our dying, thirsty soil. Who does that?! Only One . . . And His name: Jesus. Alleluia.

So y'all, I hope you had a fabulous Christmas! But I hope it's not just a "had" . . . I hope that you continue to enjoy Christmas, to dive in deep, to search the Pages and understand it, feel it, experience it. Experience Love Himself, experience God with us. We can still do that, ya know. Even after December 25! Hoorah! :)

Monday, December 21, 2009

Gifts Under a Cross

This past Friday was Spiritual Emphasis Day at my school. It's a day of class parties, games, a chapel, devotions, workshops, seniors leading the school in caroling, etc. Well, our chapel speaker this year was son of one of the teachers at E.L., and he was comparing some of the aspects of Christmas to Christ's story. For instance, He compared the Christmas lights to Jesus being the Light and the presents under the tree as the many gifts God has given us. Now a lot of those comparisons I had heard in some form or fashion, but he ended the chapel by painting a word picture I had never seen. He reminded us that we use evergreens as Christmas trees, and evergreens represent eternal life. He wanted us to picture the Christmas tree as the cross, and the lights on the tree as Jesus hanging there. Where His blood spilled on the ground was where we are left with His gifts, presents. That picture captivates me. It wakes me up to Christmas. Real Christmas. Christmas isn't just about Messiah's birth, but it's about the beginning of a journey He took for us, isn't it? It's somewhat of a beginning of the Ultimate Gift given for us.

Not every gift fits under a tree. Here are some gifts that I've received lately from a gracious God, and not all of them could squeeze themselves into boxes, but I'm still so grateful. I'm grateful for His blood and His grace. Yahweh is so good. So. Good.

316. Class laughter during Christmas party

317. Playing the game wink-em as a class . . . it was a hit!

318. Prayer meeting before pageant

319. Unity of a church wrapping ourselves together to present Him . . . our Savior.

320. Associate Pastor is back home from Iowa.

321. "Baby Jesus'" grin and that he quieted in my arms

322. A new Bethany Dillon CD from Friend

323. Bouquet of lilies and red carnations

324. All those that came to see me and others at pageant . . . what grace.

325. The nativity music box . . . a reminder of a remarkable experience

326. Three performances of the story of Jesus' birth . . . my first as Mary. What an experience. What a journey.

327. Broken release . . . tears and more tears.

328. Joy comes in the morning and so does peace.

329. Broken peoples' smiles

330. That make-up bag she snuck into my bag . . . love.

331. "Aunt Elizabeth's" kindness and gentleness

332. Gaile made it Home for Christmas. I'm going to miss this godly man who passed away during our pageant . . . maybe even during the scene he used to play in as Simeon, during the line "now my soul can rest in peace. I have seen Him!" Wow . . . what a story of God's grace! It's not an easy story on this side of the veil, but on the other, glorious side, I bet Gaile is so happy! And I'm happy for him.

333. Drama teacher's presence

334. Dust has settled

335. Christmas VACATION!!!! Woo Hoo!!!!

Alleluia . . . is He not good?!

Saturday, December 19, 2009


Oh Jesus,

I need You. Please open my ears. Speak louder than my desires scream. Soften my Will to say "Yes" to You; harden it to say "No" to the Contrary. Define what the Right looks like. Light up the crevices. Please quiet my spirit to hear that whisper . . . oh Jesus, teach me to wait . . .

I love You, . . . danae

Monday, December 14, 2009

An Abundance

I am so blessed . . .

301. Visit to Multnomah University

302. Listening to Ambassador choir sing Christmas carols

303. Small flakes of snow

304. Fuzzy, warm pajama pants

305. A packed Sunday School classroom of silly, little kiddos

306. Grandma and Grandpa coming to pageant dress rehersal

307. Prayer chapel and him playing piano

308. Squirming little five month old and those alert eyes

309. Warmed earth

310. Laughing due to sleep deprivation

311. Clean water

312. Inspiration of Biggest Loser . . . can't believe it's over!

313. Sitting in on college Bible class

314. Her prayer blessing

315. Encouragement and prayers of friends, pulling me through

Sunday, December 13, 2009


The past few years, Christmas was not on the top of my list for favorite holidays. It has been glamorous and extravagant, and well, empty. Each year, I tried to focus on the King. I'd sing, "I want this Christmas to be different than before . . . I want something more, so to the manger I run, to the manger I bow before Your tiny feet, with the straw beneath my knees, this is what Christmas was meant to be." I tried to spill Christianity into Christmas, and I always failed. I think it's kinda a personality thing actually. I'm a very "sensing" person. In order for things to really click, I need to feel them, touch them, EXPERIENCE them. You can tell me a story of poor Mexican orphan kids and show me the pictures, and it'd possibly break my heart, but if you really want to touch me, I've got to experience their pain and connect with them. I hadn't been experiencing Christmas. I had been trying to make Christmas an experience if that makes any sense at all. Well, this year is kinda different (and I'm so happy!) . . . I've been given the opportunity to actually EXPERIENCE Christmas.

During November, my Sunday school teacher asked me (well, to be true to the circumstance, I guess "told" would be a better word choice than "asked") if I'd play the part of Mary in our church's annual Christmas pageant. Oh. My. Word. I was so shocked! and Excited! Being Mary was kind of an impossible dream I semi-subconsciously had. But this wasn't dream land, this was R.E.A.L! I honest-to-goodness felt like Mary at that point, felt like I had been handed this enormous gift, and I completely didn't deserve it. (I know, I know . . . deep down, I'm kinda a drama queen, but this meant so much to me!) I've spent hours practicing and so has the rest of the cast. Tonight's our dress rehearsal. Our actually performances start this upcoming week. I can't believe it's almost here!

Playing the part of Mary has really shaken up my Christmas mood this year (as well as listening to mainly Christian Christmas music). Let's just say that Mary and I are pretty tight this year, and I'm learning so much about what she might have been feeling by playing this part, and let's just say, that girl didn't have it very easy. Amy Grant gave a little talk about her, aired on KNLR radio lately, about how Mary had to have been so vulnerable, so completely dependent on God. Imagine how scary it would be to be semi-responsible for the Son of God! And I have no idea what kinda feelings she had for Joseph, but I couldn't imagine how her heart dropped when it clicked that she'd have to tell her man that she was pregnant. Scary! She had to fully lean on Father God throughout that whole experience because the townspeople sure weren't going to give her grace or applause or honor for something they might have perceived as fornication. Her hope had to have completely rested in God as well as her peace.

I don't know what it will be like for me after this pageant is over. I'm kinda dreading it actually, but I can't worry about that now. I've got to enjoy each moment, huh Kayla? :) One thing I do know however, is that I truly believe God has used this whole experience (the ups and downs . . . and there were downs, but that's a whole other story) to bring me closer to Him and to let me really experience Christmas. One of my favorite songs through this whole phenomena has been "Let the Water's Rise" by Mikes Chair . . . the words go like this:

Don't know where to begin
It's like my world's caving in
And I tried but i can't control my fear
Where do I go from here

Sometimes it's so hard to pray
You feel so far away
I am willing to go where You want me to
God I trust You

There's a raging sea
Right in front of me
Wants to pull me in
Bring me to my knees
So let the waters rise
If you want them to
I will follow You
I will follow You
I will follow You

I will swim in the deep
Cuz You'll be next to me
You're in the eye of the storm and the calm of the sea
You're never out of reach

God You know where I've been
You were there with me then
You were faithful before
You'll be faithful again
I'm holding Your hand


God Your love is enough
You will pull me through
I'm holding on to You

God your love is enough
I will follow You
I will follow You

(Lyrics from

I kinda think Mary felt like this, and I know I have as I've played her part and just as I've lived life. One thing I'm learning is that God and I can make it through those raging waves, and that I can even WELCOME those seas because my heart is with the One I'm following. And I love Him so much!

I'm not sure what the purpose of this post is. It's kinda jumpy. [smile] I just kinda wanted to write, and this is where it took me. :) Now I should probably go take a nap; it could be a long (but yes, fun) night. So thanks for reading! Have an absolutely wonderful week! :)

Monday, December 7, 2009

Peace + More Gift

I'm so glad my church participates in the advent tradition of lighting the candles before Christmas and pulling out a theme each week. Last week's theme was hope, and this week's is peace. Peace. For some reason, we don't hear too much about peace, do we? Love is highlighted and circled, but peace waits like a nearby fog, waiting for us to step in, relax in the arms of Christ. What a gift from God! What a relief to be able to breathe. To live. In peace. I am so grateful for it today, as well as so many other things. Here's a few of them as I continue my trek to 1000.

286. Colored icicle lights dripping off roof [not literally, people . . . :D]

287. Riding side-saddle on a donkey for the first time

288. The ability to hear

289. A brilliant moon

290. Peace . . . this week's advent theme.

291. Child-like Christmas chain of red and green

292. Him sharing his heart . . . I'm glad I could be there to listen. Still don't know why he echoed his heart to me? But I pray for his peace . . .

293. My whole senior class being together a few days last week . . . a rare occasion but a fun one.

294. The reminder that Mary must have been completely dependent on God; she couldn't hope to get her approval and her love from proud townspeople. Her Father was her Need-Provider, her Peace.

295. My "Aunt Elizabeth" helping me prepare for my part . . . her grace.

296. Compliments: a challenge and a grace.

297. Opportunity to learn heart-humility . . . teach me, Father God! Help me to learn it right, to pass this test.

298. Four little kiddos in Sunday school class

299. Deep sound of a cello, viola, violins.

300. My THREE-HUNDREDTH Gift! Isn't our God incredible?! alleluia . . .

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


I was in chapel today, sitting, listening, my mind wandering and careening through random thoughts. And it hit me. Lately I've been so distracted. My thought life has been booked with an issue I've been working through, my church's Christmas pageant, different styles of worship, the whole seemingly mystical Spirit-movement that seems to be seeping into several churches, things that I think the church isn't passionate about, what it means to be the person I was meant to be, etc. A lot has been spraying through my mind, subconsciously and consciously. I haven't been able to read the Bible recently without my mind wandering the plains of distraction. I found myself agreeing to a seemingly fantastic quote yesterday and then someone said something to the effect that he wasn't sure Jesus would have said it like that, and it put me on hold. Have I really not been comparing things to the very Word of God to find truth?

Anyway, I feel like a trap has been laid out for me, a trap of distraction, and I'm falling for it. And as I fall, I miss it. I miss the simplicity of a purpose-filled, focused life. I miss the deep stains of true living, . . . seeking Jesus, through His Word and through prayer.

Oh Lord, please calm the swirling seas of my mind. Speak peace into the waves and calm the throbbing thoughts. Please center me so I can live a life that's focused . . . on You. Alleluia.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Monday Morning Gifts

Monday morning. The dreaded Monday morning. Waking up was so not easy today. After all, Spanish 3 (which "happens" Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays) today means waking up at what should have been 5:30am but ended up being 5:50am-ish, plus Thanksgiving break officially ends when my black flats hit the high school hall tiles, and quite frankly, I'm not so thrilled, but as I pre-write this in physics class (yes, I know, but if you only knew the joy of this class, you'd be writing blog posts too . . . JUST kidding :), I'm reminded that the way this day goes is really largely in my hands. One of my many favorite teachers was my biology teacher and that says something because biology is not my first love (pig dissecting nearly killed me, just saying . . . okay, so "maybe" not . . . but that's a whole other story about God's grace . . . smile), but one thing that stuck with me was the poster on her desk, "Misery is optional, but joy is a choice." I love that and kinda hate it too because that means that I really have no one to blame for a nasty feeling day, ya know? I really sadly can't blame that dumb alarm clock or my choice in scheduling a zero period class or the fact that my break is being replaced by school. Well, I guess I could, but where does that take me? Misery. Mmm hmm . . . but honest to goodness, today could be a marvelous because I have the opportunity to choose joy even with those saggy clouds in the sky and the chilly, school morning. . .

Joy is such a fantastic thing. It's a fruit of the Spirit actually. Isn't it so cool that God's people are to be characterized by joy? "Christian" was never meant to be associated with a sad bunch of miserable people. The King's kids were never meant to live with their eyes on the ground, head bent. But so often I do. And it's my. fault. Rats. . . I've been caught. Smile. Anyway, all of that to say (?) that I hope your Monday is a great one! My Monday has definitely improved since when I first saw the dumb numbers 5:51. :) I am so happy to be alive, so grateful for His hands, His healing, His peace. Here's a continuous list of gifts from the Almighty. He is oh so good. I am so incredibly blessed!

271. Soul healing by a gracious God

272. Holding baby cousin . . . what a precious, beautiful life.

273. Playing game "Things" with family members

274. Understanding calculus shortcuts! "I like things I understand" ~ a twist on an old pageant quote. smile.

275. Remembering old memories with family and laughing til the tears come.

276. Breath of Heaven that holds me together

277. Christmas music focused on the real reason, the Savior.

278. A lovely Thanksgiving . . . one of my favorite holidays

279. Using the curtain for pageant practice for the first time Sunday - - woo hoo!!! I've been waiting for that day ever since I've had to practice having birth pains, but that's a story of its own . . . :)

280. Decorating Christmas cookies with youth group

281. Clean sheets of paper

282. Sitting and talking with Grandpa and Cousin.

283. Long walk and talk with Mom . . . felt so good.

284. Drops of rain hanging on twig branches

285. Joy.

Happy Monday!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Gifts from a Father

Awhile back, I picked up the book Lessons I Learned in the Dark by Jennifer Rothschild. The author is an incredibly beautiful person who is physically blind but lives spiritually wide-eyed. I learned a lot from her book and would definitely suggest it as a read that will leave ya inspired. One thing this gal talked about was that sometimes God gives us things that we don't like, and she would know. Being blind isn't for wimps I'm sure. :) Sometimes we're given tough situations, painful bumps in the road. Jennifer taught me though that we must still be thankful to the Giver, no matter the gift. She tells the story of being so excited when she was a little girl at Christmas time because she was going to get a present from one of her relatives who supposedly had shown great talents in gift-giving in the past. Much to her dismay, however, when she opened the present from her aunt (or whatever relative . . . we'll say her aunt), she found in her arrayed package . . . yes, undergarments. Um, yes. Now of course I'm sure the average American would not understand why little Jennifer was a tad disappointed, but I'll be bold [and honest] and say that I get it . . . (smile). I think I'd be a little depressed too, but of course, the story doesn't end here. Even though she got a not-so-exciting gift, being the good little gal that she was (and quite possibly because she was prompted by her mother), she still thanked her dear aunt. Why? Because she liked the gift? Guess again. Because she still loved her aunt and knew her aunt loved her? Because the purpose of the gift wasn't to wreck her life? Well, yeah. Jennifer compared this scenario to how we respond to God's gifts, because I'm going to be brutally honest [shift gaze elsewhere if honesty scares ya! . . . smile] and say that sometimes, it feels [emphasis on "feels"] that God sends us junk, and I'm going to be transparent and real and will admit that I don't always get it. It doesn't all line up, but just because I don't like some of His gifts and don't understand the "whys" or because I'm hurt and quite frankly disappointed, doesn't mean that I shouldn't say "thank You." Because even with the frustration, confusion, pain, still God is good. Still He has put thought into His gift, and each gift from Him comes from a Dad who honestly loves us deeply and really does know what's best for us more than we do. So all that to say [sorry, I'm long-winded. There's probably reasons why I'm not a boy and thus wouldn't give formal sermons . . . smile], . . . my gift list may look kinda bleak today in parts. It was a rough week, but I will still choose to say "thank You" because He knows, and I'll see the whole picture some day. Here goes . . .

251. Broken heart

252. Sustaining grace

253. Sobbing at the kitchen table - - broken release

254. That there is far more ahead of me then what I've left behind.

255. That I can't "run away" from the problems this time - - but I can still hold His hand.

256. A+ on physics test . . . Woot! God is good! Not sure how I pulled that one off . . .

257. Acceptance letter from college

258. So many shades of gray . . . unknowns. Scary for a planner/analyzer/controller, . . . but we're working through it, right Lord?

259. Loneliness - it truly will draw me to Him if I let it.

260. Much needed sleep

261. A laid back weekend

262. Walking around in my little town

263. Chillin' in a beauty shop . . . yay for haircuts! :)

264. Fresh, "new" library books to read

265. Mom is coming home from visiting family today . . . should be here any minute. I'm excited!

266. Hearing "Hanging On" by Britt Nicole and "Let the Waters Rise" by Mikeschair . . . what grace. I love it when God surrounds me with songs that just nail how I'm feeling and put it into words and music notes and harmonies. [If you want to be encouraged, check 'em out! Especially the second song. :)]

267. Sunshine today! Beautiful fall weather. Unexpected

268. Jigsaw puzzles . . . just started a new one last week. My fall-winter tradition. :)

269. Golden leaves hugging curb's edge.

270. That morning does come. That His mercies are new . . . every single morning. alleluia.

I hope this list encouraged you. I hope that it was my sacrifice of praise, now I just have to really be thankful. It's pretty easy to write these lists week after week, but it means nothing if gratitude doesn't come from my heart, ya know? Anyway, I hope your day is splattered with sunshine and with gifts from the best Giver ever . . . :)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

It's Gonna Be Okay

It's way too late. My eye lids should be pulled closed, but I'm up. I was just studying for a glamorous economics test tomorrow. I'm so exhausted. Jet lagged, heart torn, distracted, confused, ragged. I'm trying to make it to the weekend. You ever have those days? Those days where you think, "If I can only make it to *insert day here*" . . . you know. But right now, I'm listening to a song "Don't Worry Now" by Britt Nicole. I'm hoping she's okay with me posting her lyrics here. Now for those of you who wonder, I'm not having Dad problems or divorce issues in my family, but it's one of those days where I just need to hear the "Don't worry now," that "It's gonna be okay," that "good [can] come of these feelings that I have." And it will. I know. But I need to hear it sometimes . . .

"Don't Worry Now"
Britt Nicole

Seven years old, you heard me cry
I don't wanna say goodbye
To the only man that I love
My daddy and everything he was
I don't think I can live without you
Dad, I know you're breaking in two
With tears running down his face, he says we're gonna make it
We're gonna make it

When you feel like you are all alone
Just like your best friend up and gone
Don't worry now
Don't worry now
I've been there yeah, I know how it feels
To wonder if love is even real
Don't worry now
Don't worry now
It's gonna be ok

I've been trying to find a way to understand
When I can't see the picture of God's plan
Why would He let us hurt so bad?
Could anything good come of these feelings that I have?
He loved me more than the sand on beaches
He loved me more than the grass is green
And even though he had to go I always knew his love was part of me

When you feel like you are all alone
Just like your best friend up and gone
Don't worry now
Don't worry now
I've been there yeah, I know how it feels
To wonder if love is even real
Don't worry now
Don't worry now

It's taken so long to let this go
It's taken so long to feel that
You're right here next to me
And I can finally breathe
It's taken so long but now I know
I had to find out on my own
When nothing could convince me
Your love it convinced me
That it's gonna be ok

When you feel like you are all alone
Just like your best friend up and gone
Don't worry now
Don't worry now
I've been there yeah, I know how it feels
To wonder if love is even real
Don't worry now
Don't worry now
It's gonna be
It's gonna be ok

Hope this turns your eyes upward like it does me. Oh, side note, if you need a smile, check out "Headphones" by Britt Nicole on youtube. It shall make thee smile. :)

Monday, November 16, 2009

A Continuous Trek to 1000 Gifts

I have so much to be thankful for. One thing I'm so not grateful for, however, is the fact that the whole U.S. of A. seems to think it's time for Christmas before we even begin Thanksgiving. Sad, huh? But I guess Thanksgiving isn't just restricted to a date on the calendar, is it? It's a mindset. I'm not "there" yet, but I'm working on it. I need to remember to add to my "thank you" list daily and not just on Mondays, because truly every day is littered with gifts from God's hand. We just got to keep those eyes open, ya know? :)

236. Little boy hand reaching between seats in airplane

237. Visit to Asbury College in KY, several states away . . .

238. Rolling green of Kentucky fields

239. Note in suitcase from Mom

240. Free gifts from Asbury - - new water bottle, t-shirt, lanyard, bag - yay! :)

241. Seeing Friend from my state who's currently in Kentucky doing some super cool volunteer work

242. Late night talk with my sweet dorm host during college visit

243. Meeting mutual friend and getting more Asbury info

244. Kentucky accents

245. Sister's letter filled with pageant quotes

246. Big brick buildings

247. Enthusiastic English teachers

248. Moments of revelation

249. Ale 8 1 ("A Late One") . . . Kentucky's very own Ginger-Ale type of pop

250. Time with dad as we traveled through this college visit together.

Happy today!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

What I Learned In Wilmore, Kentucky

This past Wednesday, my dad and I left in an airplane at around 6 in the morning for my very first technical college visit. We were heading off to Asbury college, a private, Christian school in Wilmore, Kentucky. I wasn't sure what I was going to see there or what I was going to do, but it was truly going to be an adventure I was excited about and kinda nervous for too.

Well, Kentucky is absolutely beautiful. It's full of rolling, green fields, and in Lexington, there are oodles of beautiful brick buildings. Another thing I noticed besides the fact that a whole lot of people smoke over there (and that they're allowed to smoke in buildings, which is completely weird for me since the state I live in is pretty strict about such stuff), is that there are tons of churches. I'm not sure if that's a good thing or not. I'm curious how many of those churches are really living or if a lot of people just hang their hat there for the social aspect and never really know that Living Water runs free and that it changes you. Anyway, it was a pretty nice place, except for the traffic and traffic signs. Oh, another side note, some of the people had extremely cool accents! It was kinda weird though . . . their accents made it feel like a completely different culture, which I'm sure it kinda is, but you know . . . :)

Well, my dad and I eventually located the college, and I was again told that I was going to be staying with a girl who I'll call Caroline. I had no idea what to expect, except that everyone said that she was incredible and so sweet. After an A&W dinner, my dad and I trekked back to the college, and I, with the help of another girl, found Miss Caroline's room. The door opened, and I saw a lovely little southern girl with short hair, a super cool accent, and a beautiful heart. She was soooo welcoming. She let me sleep on her bed while she slept on the floor and offered to take me to an event in the student center, but what really touched me the most about this gal was how similar we are or were at least. Thursday night, I was in the dorm, pretty tired, and she just sat down with me and offered me some peanuts, so we shucked peanuts and chatted about life. I mentioned that everyone knows her and loves her and that she must be a pretty beautiful person. :) She told me the story of how she used to be really closed up, that grades used to be everything to her. She's got a perfectionistic bent (which sounds a bit too familiar) and allowed school work to consume her and take over the girl she was meant to be. She shut out friends and lived in her little box with just her school work and her family. When she came to college, she came with the idea that it was her chance to start over. She was going to have friends again, just meet 'em and make 'em, and ya know what? People were going to like her. And let me tell you . . . people love her.

Lately, I feel like God has been kinda tapping on my shoulder and wanting me to realize that it's okay to be Danae, that I'm not supposed to be someone else, just simply Danae. I'm not sure what all that means, but I'm kinda excited to find out.

Anyway, another thing I loved about Caroline was how real she was. She wasn't a cheapo fake; she was the real college deal with a heart for the Lord. I want to be like that. Seriously. I'm so glad we could talk because she so encouraged me and because I felt that, because we are very similar in personalities, she understood, and I understood her. That's an extremely marvelous thing.

I also feel like I got kinda a revelation as I was laying in my top bunk bed in the small dorm. You know those ideas that hit ya at random moments, the ones that seem so simple and yet so profound? Well, I had one of those. It came to me that though I need to try to be like Jesus, that's not my complete goal. I need to learn to be a follower of Jesus and a lover. I think that I so often make my goal to be Jesus, which being like Him is an extremely fantastic goal, but I think that I sometimes miss the whole deal that I need to learn to be the best follower of Him that I can be (and that will lead me to being like Him). Anyway, relative side note: I was listening to a lady on Focus on the Family once upon a time ago, and she was talking about how women need to make it a goal to learn to be the best lovers for their husbands that they can be. Ya see where I'm going? I need to learn to be the best follower (and lover) of Christ that I can be. I need to learn what it means to serve Him, to think ahead to how I can bless Him, to spend quality time with Him, and in the end, if I spend that time with Him and listen to His voice, I will be like Him in the end. I have no idea if that made any sense, but the whole idea got the creaky wheels of my mind turning. :)

Anyway, those are some of the things I learned in Wilmore. . . that it's okay to be me (and it's okay to BE you), that I need to learn how to follow, and also, that I need to say "yes" to Jesus, even when I don't know what I'm saying "yes" to because of a hazy future . . .

I'm still not sure what I'm going to do with Asbury. I really think it's a great school with fantastic people, but I'm not sure where God's leading me yet. So I have a lot of processing and a lot of praying to do yet. :) I really believe the trip was worth it though. I had a fantastic time with my dad, I met a lovely southern girl, and I learned a few lessons in beautiful, little Wilmore. :)

Monday, November 9, 2009

Heartache Healer

These are lyrics from Nicole Nordeman's song "I Am." I hope she doesn't mind me sharing them with you. These words hurt and yet heal me now. My heart aches. But this is the time that I cry just His name, because sometimes, that's all we can do . . . and that's okay.

Oh Jesus, "'Heart-ache Healer, Secret-keeper, / be my Best Friend' and You said 'I am.'"

(You can find her song in youtube, just to let you know . . . )

"I Am"

Pencil marks on a wall.
I wasn't always this tall,
You scattered some monsters from beneath my bed,
You watched my team win,
You watched my team lose,
You watched when my bicycle went down again,

And When I was weak unable to speak,
still I could call You by name,
and I said “Elbow healer, Superhero,
come if You can,” and You said “I am”

Only 16, life is so mean, what kind of curfew is at ten PM
You saw my mistakes, You watched my heart break
Heard when I swore I’d never love again

When I was weak, unable to speak,
still I could call You by name,
and I said “Heart-ache Healer, Secret-keeper,
be my Best Friend” and You said “I am”

You saw me wear white, by pale candlelight,
I said forever to what lies ahead
two kids and a dream, with kids that can scream
too much it might seem when it’s two AM

when I am weak, unable to speak,
still I will call You by name.
“Oh Shepherd, Savior, Pasture-maker,
hold on to my hand,” and You say “I am.”

The winds of change,
And circumstance blow in and all around
us so we find a foothold that’s familiar,
And bless the moments that we feel You nearer
Life had begun, I was woven and spun,
You let the angels dance around the throne, who can say when,
But they’ll dance again, when I am free and finally headed home

I will be weak, unable to speak,
still I will call You by name
“Creator, Maker, Life-sustainer,
Comforter, Healer, My Redeemer,
Lord and King, Beginning and
the End, I am, yes, I am.”

Journey -- 1000 Gifts Continued

Another "thank You"

216. Youth lining front pews of church

217. Sharing pizza with friends

218. New song I heard on K-Love . . . "Your Hands" by JJ Heller (it really is worth a stop at youtube!)

219. Memorized lines

220. Bringing friends to church

221. Mint chocolate chip milkshake

222. Hearing cousin's news.

223. Wearing comfy clothes to school . . . Yay for spirit week. :)

224. "When my heart is breaking, I never leave Your hands" - JJ Heller

225. Learning what it means to "be" Mary . . . Christmas will look different this year.

226. Fireproof --- movie with Kirk Cameron! :) smile . . .

227. Grandpa's big hands

228. Grandma's grin

229. Anticipation . . . and learning to wait.

230. Reminder of surrender . . . I have a long way to go, but a journey begins with a single step, right?

231. Violin music

232. Plane tickets to a college . . . flying out this week!

233. God-dreams fulfilled

234. A Kansas auctioneer and down-to-earth preacher :)

235. Learning what it means to be the Danae I have been created to be . . . a journey.

Happy Day! <3

Monday, November 2, 2009

Open Eyed

206. Driving solo in the fall sunshine

207. Pumpkin cake

208. Making homemade apple cider with youth group

209. Crates and crates (and crates) of apples

210. Beginning of Christmas pageant practices

211. My new role in pageant this year (I'M SO EXCITED!)

212. A special speaker at church this week - - renewal meetings.

213. Daylight Savings Time . . . one extra hour of sleep :) Yes!

214. Mini-doughnut day with Aunt, Uncle, Grandparents and family. Mmm...

215. Early morning grays in sky . . . new day.

Happy New Day! :) Look out for those little things. They're there if you keep your eyes open. :)

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Browning and Blackberries

“Earth's crammed with heaven, And every common bush afire with God; But only he who sees, takes off his shoes . . . "

- Elizabeth Barrett Browning

In case you were desperately dying to know about the " . . . " in the above quotation, the quote ends with a riveting statement.

"The rest sit round it and pluck blackberries.”

Hmm . . .

Monday, October 26, 2009


191. Fall stickers - - it's the little things in life. smile.

192. Mom and Dad made it home safely from Hawaii.

193. Seashells

194. Crayola markers

195. Warm cherry pie

196. Dining with Aunt and Uncle.

197. That God sees us as we will be.

198. Prison ministry.

199. Candlelight dinner

200. Child-comment . . . makes me grin.

201. Banana bread - - - funny how you can get good out of old, mellow bananas. :)

202. Running in the rain in a jean skirt. It can be done. :)

203. Warm heater in car

204. Focus on the Family broadcasts

205. Easy school days. :)

Happy Monday! Today is the day . . .

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Spinning Laundry

So I'm sitting here, listening to the laundry whirl about in the dryer, hoping it will soon dry so I can go to bed. Oh boy. Why did I get myself into this again? Oh, . . . it just beeped. Got to go check it . . . I'll be right back. . .

Okay, so it's not done yet. Rats. I wonder if wet towels will be okay, waiting for their turn in the ol' dryer 'til morning. Hmm. Anyway! Happy Wednesday! :)

So I had a break-through moment today. Well, kinda. I was pretty resistant to it, but I suppose it got the best of me. Now before I went to school this morning, I flipped the pages of my Bible to Lamentations 3:19-33. Amidst those verses is the commonly quote phrase, ". . . His compassions never fail. They are new every morning . . ." Isn't that great? Anyway (break-through moment still to come in case you were wondering . . . ), so after I closed my Bible and got around, my sis and I headed off to Spanish 3, our zero period class. Now, to be honest, I was not looking forward to this class.
Point A) I was tired.
Point B) The teacher had not shown up and left us stranded on Monday; I think we deserved to sleep in.
Point C) I was extremely exhausted.

Okay, so to sum it up, I was very tired and quite honestly, a little bitter. So, we arrived at school on time and in one piece, and our teacher showed up. So disgusted at this whole early-morning-Spanish thing, Sister and I and another student headed towards our classroom. Now, I know this is completely irrational (but that dumb human nature has a way of wrecking my life and like a fore mentioned, I was tired), but I was pretty aggravated with my teacher. Why in this whole little earth did he not call us Monday morning so we could have slept an extra hour instead of wait in our little cars and arriving at school out-landishly early for a class that didn't even happen because he was sick and had known about it the previous Friday? Feel my pain? But you know what hit me like a day old banana peal? "His compassions never fail" "New . . . EVERY morning." I have been so smothered in grace. It is beyond anything I could ever hope to deserve. I can count on the compassions of God, EVERY single morning, however early I have to wake up. If God has granted me something I completely don't deserve, why am I holding it back from another? [Ouch.] I needed to hear that. I'm so glad God uses His Spirit to teach me, even though I will willingly admit, His way is NOT the easy way. It's run-ten-laps-in-the-pouring-rain-then-20-crunches-followed-by-jogging-3.9-miles hard. Okay, maybe not, but you follow me? It's kinda exciting though, and in the end, it kinda feels a lot better. I am so stinking selfish. God has so much work to do with this pitiful creature, but I'm glad He hasn't given up on me yet. Oh boy am I glad.

Well, the dryer just beeped again. Hmm . . . I sure hope the load is done by now. If not, we might get wet towels in the morning. Smile. :) Happy day!

Monday, October 19, 2009


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171. Spotting an owl in neighbors' backyard

172. Bouquets of fall leaves in vase

173. Traveling mercies

174. Carpeted, wooden pews

175. E-mail from Lexington Pastor

176. Being taken out to dinner by church couple

178. Orange chicken . . . mmm.

179. Mini pumpkins

180. Car laughter between the sister and me . . . the birds were almost toast. Smile.

181. Grandma's comment . . . everyone makes mistakes, wouldn't want to be around you if you didn't.

182. Grandma Z.'s facebook messages. :)

183. No Spanish 3 this morning. :)

184. Wind currents brushing through my hair.

185. Message in church . . . we are God's house, His dwelling place.

186. Sister's photography (that's her picture of the owl . . . hopefully more will be coming from her portfolio. :)

187. Church people knowing and caring

188. "Wonderful Merciful Savior" sung yesterday. Mmm.

189. Poetry

190. My first college application. Finished. Yay!

Trust and gratefulness are my focuses right now. It's incredible how God lifts you up when you trust Him and thank Him. I'm not so good at it, but I'm learning. Step. By. Step. :)

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Lemon Yellow

Fall has to be my favorite. The colors of the leaves make my pupils dilate. The rich, deep reds, the lemon yellows and bright, lime greens. I like the way the rain infuses small stems of grass and tiny particles of dirt during the fall. I also am entranced by the autumn sunlight, spraying color on a worn world. I am so glad to be living in a place with seasons. Seriously. :) It is beautiful.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Canadian Thanksgiving

It's been a brand new Monday. I limped into it wondering how I would make it. But I did. He never left. Ever. I shouldn't have been worried. Anyway, here's to another Monday and to the many gifts from a loving Father.

156. Fall-orange pumpkins

157. SAT finished . . . Jesus is my peace.

158. Parents' 25th anniversary! Yay!

159. School kits sent to needy kids.

160. Annual MCC Festival - - Fall tradition.

161. Walk during school in fresh fall air.

162. Caring, protecting words from teacher.

163. A new box of puzzle pieces to try soon maybe?

164. Senior pics finished? :)

165. Friends from church, a precious thing.

166. Driving through a sunrise.

167. The way the fog clings to earthen fields

168. Crisp fuji apple

169. The way that thankfulness ends up blessing me. Funny how that works.

170. Green cotton scarves.

PS The calendar says that it's Thanksgiving in Canada. Who knew, right? :) I hope you have a lovely Canadian Thanksgiving today, eh?!

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae

Saturday, October 10, 2009

A Dios

I successfully took a step closer to a possible college career. And. It. Was. EXHAUSTING. Three letters say it all . . . SAT. And no, I'm not talking about a couch and potato chips, thank you. :) I'm talking about the Standard Achievement Tests or whatever they're called. However, it was another reminder:
God Comes Through. Always. For His glory.
I wanted to give Him some space today in this lil' blog o' mine. I want to send up a thank You and a blessing. He is good all the time, and it truly was His peace that sustained me. :)

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Free Falling

The time is late for an early morning rise tomorrow. But still, the words are boiling and bubbling, and I wonder if I might release a little steam before the time erodes, and I'm deathly tired tomorrow morning. :)

Isn't it incredible how one can discover oneself? How God so often unveils who we are in random, sometimes scarce but impacting moments? One thing He's showing me is that I've got a fix-it, problem solver, what-can-I-do-now mentality. Whenever I see a problem, my first response is, "What can I do?" as if I were responsible to take care of the world. Something I'm also learning this week is that I'm quite often not in charge of fixing the world's problems or the problems in the lives of my friends or the problems of awkwardness and silence. God is The Problem Solver. He proved that on two slabs of scabbing wood several years ago. I must surrender. Surrender means giving up my right to success. It means laying down a deep and searing need, the need to be needed. It means trusting with open arms, doesn't it? I need to learn a lot about free falling. Falling into Jesus. Well, I best be off. The time is savagely ticking away, and my eyelids are gravitating downward. Plus, I still have some English reading to do. Smile. :) But I also have a lot of other work to do. A lot of surrendering ahead of me. A lot of prayer to get me there. :) But we'll do it, won't we, Jesus?

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae

Monday, October 5, 2009

Multitude of Gifts Monday

Happy Monday! :) Things change when we learn the essence of thankfulness. I'm learning. I haven't quite arrived yet, but I'm learning. :)

141. Old garden shoes

142. The feel of the piano keys

143. Autumn drafts of oxygen

144. "Thank You" by 33 Miles

145. The tinges of red spray on the changing leaves

146. First fire in wood stove since early spring

147. Child smile

148. Special needs kids

149. Youth group special music

150. Four day weekends

151. Getting make-up done in Macy's . . . now that was interesting and embarrassing and kinda fun. :)

152. Thick, warm blankets

153. The harvest moon

154. His mercies are new . . . every morning.

155. Pumpkins speckled in orange about to overtake the green.

Happy Autumn. Happy brand new week. :)

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae

Friday, October 2, 2009

Be Thou My Vision

"The limits are, as always, those of vision." - James Broughton

I had the incredible pleasure of meeting "limited" kids today. My mom takes care of a little special needs boy, who goes to a school for kids like him and others who have special needs. My sister and I got to visit it today (Friday) since we didn't have school. Wow! What an incredible experience. Can I share some of these beautiful kids with ya? And of course, names will be changed due to "privacy reasons" . . . smile. :)

Justin is a freckled, cute little guy who can't see. His blindness is due to his father beating him when he was a baby. Cruelty is unnerving, but this child still smiles. (Why? I have no idea . . . yet I do kinda know 'cause I know the One who loves him) Anyway, he's the little guy that "coincidentally" told my mom he liked her hair after she had gotten a haircut, even though no other person had mentioned it. smile. I LOVE this kid! Of course, he's pretty ornery too. He was clapping his hands, trying to annoy this other little guy during a movie. Perfect? Uh, no. But adorable. He told my mom today, "Julia, I like you."
"I like you too, Justin."
"Have a fan-tabulous day!"
Isn't that the cutest thing? This guy may be limited by a lack of physical vision, but that little guy's outlook isn't impaired. He still smiles. He still claps his hands and twirls a container lid on the floor. He told another little boy, "Jeff," who is probably about the same age with most likely a learning disability, "Jeff, I like you."
Jeff responded without missing a beat, "Justin, I like you too."
I heard Justin say that again a little later to Jeff, and the answer was the same.

It's the child graces, isn't it? Maybe if we went around telling people not only that we love them, but that we like them, this world might be spread with a few more rays of sunshine. What do ya think?

Emily is a little down syndrome girl with blond hair and a bright smile. She doesn't talk, but her grin can speak volumes. We think she has a crush on the boy my mom takes care of who also cannot speak. I don't know about you, but love amazes me. Special needs, limited mind pulses cannot limit love. Maybe that's because God is love, and God is unbound, expansive, limitless.

Mark is a thin boy with droopy eyes. He whines and wails and the world seems to him to be against him. But still. Even in this miserable mess of a child, there's still something that makes me want to run with him and swing him on a swing and play catch with him because somewhere in his soul, I think there's a smile and a laugh. Of course, I know the whining must get old and the trying to curb his weary complaining must be so tiring to the teachers, and I'm sure that if I'd have stuck around longer, it might have got to me, but I still believe that these kids are so special in the eyes of Almighty God. I know because He creates in me a desire to love with His love kids I don't even know. I am made to wonder, also, what kinda care these kiddos get at home too. Maybe Mark doesn't get the hugs and the grins and the empathy and compassion at home. Maybe he's just starving.

Mandy has mental retardation, dark skin, and a big smile. She greets me by asking me when my birthday is. :) I helped her put some stickers in a book, and she grinned and smiled. She told me she was ten years old, and her favorite color is pink. What a jewel. [And side note here, I know a lot of people use the phrase, "That's retarded," but honestly, if I may, that bugs me. Retarded is a real, legit special need/mental illness, and it seems like it would hurt those who really are retarded or those with retarded family to say that. Just a thought . . . my soapbox speech for the day. :)]

Okay, one last little one. Seth is a blond head with what looks like I-just-got-out-of-bed hair. :) He is small, and again, it's his smile. That slight, happy boy smile that gets me. He plays Sorry with my sister, and she tells me later that he doesn't quite count right, but nonetheless, he wins! He's sooooo proud of himself. Honestly . . . he was beaming sunshine out his ears. :) His "vision" isn't impaired. He still smiles. Still grows. Still reaches. I have so much to learn from these kids.

I really hope I can go back and visit sometime. I know these kids aren't perfect. I know they've got a lot of dirt and scrapes and orneriness, but I know that there's a lot of loving that they need too. Maybe I can help with that. Maybe we can all help with that in the corner of our world. I hope your day is lovely. Grin big today. Dream. Don't be impaired by a lack of vision; be enabled by vision. It will change you. :)

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae :)

Oh, one last thing. I reaaaaaaaaaally like this song, and it ties in here. Enjoy the archaic language and the strong message. It is lovely. :)

Be Thou My Vision

Be Thou my Vision, Oh Lord of my heart;
Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art---
Though my best thought, by day or by night,
Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light.

Be Thou my Wisdom, and Thou my true Word;
I ever with Thee and Thou with me, Lord;
Thou my great Father, I Thy true son,
Thou in me dwelling, and I with Thee one.

Riches I heed not, nor man's empty praise,
Thou mine inheritance, now and always;
Thou and Thou only, first in my heart,
High King of heaven, my Treasure Thou art.

High King of heaven, my victory won,
May I reach heaven's joys, O bright heav'n's Sun!
Heart of my own heart, whatever befall,
Still be my Vision, O Ruler of all. Amen.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Happy Monday!

116. Hometown Legend by Jerry B. Jenkins - an autumn tradition? I read it last Autumn and have picked it up again for a re-read. One of my favs!

117. Rows of homegrown green beans

118. Chirping crickets

119. Hazy, Indian corn sunsets

120. Apologetics

121. The beginning of autumn, my favorite season.

122. Listening to Focus on the Family really early in the morning.

123. Senior camp-out this past weekend

124. Mama and Dad's prayers over me.

125. Waking up with decent hair. smile.

126. Laughter in Spanish 3.

127. A tiny, cold mouse nibbling on cheese . . . our very real Spanish three mascot that has passed away. Poor little guy. :) He fell into a sink on the weekend and couldn't get out. :( At least he wasn't running loose. Oh boy. :)

128. How Jesus helped me with my anger and with loving.

130. Hope and tomorrows.

131. Hearing "Lead me to the cross" on the radio on the way to funeral.

133. Yellow shawl from Grandma's hardworking hands.

134. Toasty campfires

135. S'Mores . . . mmmm

136. Staying up until 2:30 am laughing with a friend

137. Jesus in the chaos.

138. Bright green leaves backgrounded by a brilliant blue sky.

139. Quiet nature walks with Him.

140. Playing games with my wildly wonderful senior class.

Happy Monday! Keep countin'! :)

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae

Monday, September 21, 2009

A Sea of Gifts

Here goes! Time for another counting.

91. Guppy Memories (inside cousin joke . . . yay for those jewels :) smile)

92. Grandpa C's birthday party and him blowing out each candle in one powerful puff --- he's 89 years old. :)

93. Ann Kiemel on Focus on the Family (9-16-09) . . . love her!

94. Phone call from Asbury college.

95. Facebook inboxes from a girl I don't even know who has so graciously answered my Asbury questions . . . what a gift! :)

96. Late summer rain.

97. The way Almighty God used Psalms 28 to speak to my heart. I needed it. Desperately.

98. Ozzie dog --- my sister's dog. She is so quick to show herself friendly. :)

100. The one hundred gift mark --- God is soooo good!

101. Mulled spice candle - - Autumn is on its way (2pm tomorrow the new season begins . . . I'm counting down!)

102. English reading homework

103. Nailed down classes . . . I finally figured it out (that was stressful!).

104. Being able to watch Kevin Skinner win America's Got Talent with Barbara Pedilla in 2nd place . . . it's the ordinary people that God has used to grace our lives. They are truly beautiful.

105. A summer bike ride around the house.

106. Reminders to trust.

107. A rocking swing on our back porch and time for solitude.

108. Nice, warm showers.

109. The incredible, inspiring stories of Biggest Loser -- it's about the choices and how we think.

110. Communion at church . . . sacred.

111. Footwashing at church service last night . . . I know, some thing it's gross, but it is such a strong message of servitude, of grace, of Jesus.

112. A set of watercolor paints -- it's the little things :)

113. The cool breath of air after the rain.

114. Smell of Mom's baking ginger snaps.

115. Deep, encouraging notes from friends.

Though it's so tempting to consider today another "miserable Monday," it doesn't have to be, does it? Today's a day of gifts and miracles. We just have to wear the right glasses to catch each moment. :) I hope your day's wonderful . . . that you step out on the sand and wade deep in the mercy of God. He's with you!

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae :)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Revisiting Thursday

All right, general rule: I never write blog drafts; I just post cold turkey. :) On Thursday, however, I happened to distract myself by writing the following blog, which I edited today, and I wanted to share it with you. I also wanted to share that Jesus is reaching me and pulling me up. Continuously. I need Him. I hope it encourages you and reminds you that there is a Hand dangling near yours. It is strong and has the rough feel of a carpenter. There's even a deep, skin puncture in it, but it is the Hand of Love, and it is reaching for yours. Anyway, here goes:

Today was a rough day. As was yesterday. As was last week. I feel like the seams of my spirit are being torn, stitch by stitch. I was at the breaking point after leaving school today and heading home. I wasn't able to eat lunch, a guy in my class really disappointed me (but it definitely wasn't his fault by any means . . . it was mine. I had excepted something so impossible for the now.), I despised the way I was too loud, I was too tired, I was drowning with homework (and still am - - - now why am I doing this instead of homework, you ask? Good question . . . ), I was . . . broken. But after I got home and had eaten, I decided to go outside with my Bible and an English book. Things began to turn . . .

Sometimes, I truly think that what we need isn't the absence of our load or our struggle or are chaos. We just need a breath of fresh air, a breath of Jesus. That's what I took in as I walked around my house today. I poured it out, and He listened. I know it. I told Him that I'm not enough, that I'm driven by pleasing others, that I'm so sick of who I am right now, that this is only the second week and homework is a high tidal wave, threatening to drown me, that I'm not as strong as they think I am, that I'm not as connected to Him as they think I am. And you know what happened? I turned to this striking passage in Psalms 28. Here it goes in New International Version:

To you I call, O LORD my Rock; do not turn a deaf ear to me. For if you remain silent, I will be like those who have gone down to the pit. Hear my cry for mercy as I call to you for help, as I lift up my hands toward your Most Holy Place. Do not drag me away with the wicked, with those who do evil, who speak cordially with their neighbors but harbor malice in their hearts. Repay them for their deeds and for their evil work; repay them for what their hands have done and bring back upon them what they deserve. Since they show no regard for the works of the LORD and what His hands have done, He will tear them down and never build them up again. Praise be to the LORD, for He has heard my cry for mercy. The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in Him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to Him in song. The LORD is the strength of His people, a fortress of salvation for His anointed one. Save your people and bless your inheritance; be their shepherd and carry them forever.

These verses gently yet painfully knocked on my heart. Some of the lines that struck me were "who speak cordially with their neighbors but harbor malice in their hearts." I am ....... guilty. How easy it is to be superficial. How wrong it is to be anything less than genuine. Jesus, change me!

"My heart trusts in Him, and I am helped." I've been learning lately the importance of trusting. It is more important than I could have ever realized. If I don't completely lean on Him, I will fall. fail. splat.

"A fortress of Salvation" . . . Jesus is my castle. He is strong to save. I am safe.

"Be their shepherd and carry them forever." That is my heart cry. Jesus, will you do this for me? Please? I desperately need You. Desperately.

Well, this post is already well over how long it should have been. :( Rats. I've got to learn better. It's definitely raw and unrefined, but that's how I am. Jesus is changing me though. Minute by minute. Thought by thought. alleluia. :)

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae

Monday, September 14, 2009

. . Gifts . .

This week was kinda a hard week. I feel like I have to look harder for the gifts, but as I look back, that's my fault. I need to remember to keep my eyes open for the gifts God lays across my path. They're there, if I only choose to see.

71. One of my friends from Church is going to my school this year with me . . . a blessing.

72. Smiles from strangers

73. Denim skirts

74. The library had the book I've been waiting to read: Boy Meets Girl: Say Hello To Courtship (Joshua Harris) . . . I know, I know. I may be nerdish, but I'm excited. :) I want to do this thing right someday. :)

75. Laughing uncontrollably in a Rep. meeting at school

76. Getting wet . . . all the way, and the "warmth" of the water. Summer has not retreated yet. :)

77. An abundance of fresh, red tomatoes and eating one like an apple. Mmm. :)

78. New kids at school. I say a prayer for them . . . it must be so hard for the shy, lonely ones. I've kinda been there. It's not easy.

79. Fresh, new school year . . . a new chance. :)

80. Hearing the voice of a young girl I haven't seen in along time. She sounds okay, but I know her heart still needs prayer.

81. Clean, green sheets

82. That I only have one zero period this week (also known as one day I have to wake up super early and be at school at a whopping 7 am . . . but hey, normally it's three days a week . . . this is a gift!) Yay! :)

83. Jesus is journeying through my life with me . . . I need Him so much.

84. The way God protected me after I blew it. He's faithful. I'm sure there's been countless times where I've done something that could have gone sooo wrong. God is good. :)

85. Being able to walk. Such a simple thing, so often taken for granted, but I am so blessed.

86. Being young. Not like being older is bad, but I want to enjoy each season as they come. For now, I want to enjoy the rough challenge and the fun experiences of being young.

87. An old Sound of Music cassette. cousin memories. :)

88. Going to "B" park with my school for Eaglefest . . . a celebration and kickoff to a new school year.

89. Mercy.

90. Singing "Child of God" in chapel this morning . . . a song I so like. You can hear it on youtube here (but *disclaimer* . . . I haven't watched all of the video yet). I am so glad to be called a Child of God. What does that even mean? Someday, I think I'll know, when I look into His eyes. I think I'll know.

"With every breath / With every thought / From what is seen / To the deepest part / I offer all / That I've come to be / To know Your love / Fathering me." alleluia.

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Roller Coaster Ride

The first week of school has been completely nailed away, finished. Yesterday I almost felt like I had just ended a ride on a twirling, whirling roller coaster and was left awe-struck and wind-blown, just sitting there wondering if this really just happened. If it really is happening. School has begun. I have stepped over the railing on into the ride. There's NO getting off until June 12th. OHHHHH boy. :)

It was a hard week. I ended it exhausted and irritable yesterday, of which I had no excuse. Never an excuse. Looking back, I know I need to play this week differently. It's time for me to revisit my goals. Selflessness. Trust. Humility. How did I really do this week?

If you peel back the thick layers, I am an addicted people-pleaser. It's ingrained deep, deep down. It controls me. Directs me. Moves me. I am enchained, but the irons must be broken. One good thing about this awful control is that the people I want to please aren't the drug addicts or the "bad kids" or the secular "in" crowd per se. Normally, it's my parents, people who give the impression that they think I can do no wrong, that I'm perfect, that I've got it all together, that I'm a faultless shining light. Now, take a step back. That should be good, right? No. I am constantly chasing the wind, perfection, and falling flat each time I fail. IT HURTS. I went through this week flippantly. Trying to survive. Trying to melt in with the rest of my class. Trying to be accepted socially. Grasping for love. But as I looked back at the end of the day, I didn't reach out enough to the new kids like people may have thought I should have. I was louder than I should have been. I laughed too frequently. I wasn't enough. I came home exhausted and took that exhaustion out at the dinner table. Exhaustion translated into irritability and unkindness. I had to keep the tears back way too often. And I had to think, this is only the first week.

But thankfully, this is only the first week. Lord willing, there are many more to come. And by the grace of a loving God, they must be different. Let me take a step back a little if I may . . .

Jesus, I lived life without purpose most of this week. I just lived. Just dived. And then there were regrets. I didn't measure up. I fell short. But honestly, I'm not so sure that's the main issue. I wasn't living for You, Most High. I was just living. I want to live with hope, with a joy-song. I want to carry Your word in my mind throughout the day. I want to pray like I breathe. I want to enjoy my classmates, Jesus, enjoy this short experience called Senior Year, but I want to enjoy it IN YOU. Not apart from You, never apart from You. My heart needs to be changed. The crusty walls need to be torn down and washed clean. Will You come, Lord? Will You work in this heart? Will You paint a fresh coat upon the walls and dust the neglected corners? I'll help. What can I do? And Jesus? I am so controlled by what I think people will think about me. I am driven by a force I was never meant to be driven by. I need help. Will You set me free?

I'm so glad that each new week starts on Sunday. I'm so ready for a brand spankin' new week. :) I'm thankful for each new moment. Each new day. I'm excited for a new chance to truly "walk humbly with my God," for a clean new slate. And with Jesus, I'm going to try hard to do this week right, to live purposely, driven by His hands. Let's do it! :)

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae

Monday, September 7, 2009

Double Post Day --- Part 2

School begins . . . um, . . . *sweaty palms, hard time swallowing, you know* . . . um . . . tomorrow. Wow. Where has the summer gone? I definitely have mixed feelings about this whole school thing. Excitement mingled with dread. I wanted to take some time though to share some of my goals, to get my thoughts together and spill them out before they can be retracted. Here goes!

This year, I want to be more selfless. I have been overwhelmed lately at the height of my selfishness. It hits me at intervals and is defeating and painful and ugly. Jesus, will you crucify me? Will You come into my life that it's You who moves the pulses of my mind and the throbbing of my heart? Will You be the One who moves my hands to reach out and who enables my feet to move forward? Will You remove my desire to be needed? To be the Best? To be the most Loved? To be the Smartest? To be the Kindest? Let me just be like You, Jesus. That's all I need. No ulterior motives. No shady agendas. I don't even know where to begin on learning selflessness. Will You help me? Reach down?

Trust is another thing. There are so many decisions to be made this year. What college? Where do I find the scholarships? Will I survive taking SATs?! But yet again, Proverbs beckons my heart to slow its beat, to rest safe.

"Trust in the Lord with ALL your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways, acknowledge Him, AND HE WILL MAKE STRAIGHT YOUR PATHS."

Jesus, it sounds so easy. But it's hard. Make that my verse. My anchor. Please. Let me lean on no crutches. Just on You.

This year, I want to be in the pride-killing business. Drastic sounding? Yes, I know. But There Is No Other Way. I want Humility to grace my steps. Each school year, I used to go back thinking, you know what? This year, I'm going to be confident. I'm going to show the popular folks that I really do have it all together. That I'm not a little mole but can hold my own. Not this year, Jesus. Let me not worry about rising above. Teach me confidence in You, yes, but most importantly, show me who I am in reference to You. Be my reference point, Jesus. Be my steady strength.

My prayer for this year is that God would use me, a very broken instrument, that He'd keep my ears and eyes open to the needs, but most of all, that He would be glorified in my crooked, broken life. I pray that I would be REAL, not a cheap fake. No acting, just being. Well, this wraps up my goals for the moment. Tomorrow will be the day to put it into practice. Oh boy. :) The adventure awaits, now I must get this shy adventurer ready. Jesus, will you help me?

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae

Jesus, I don't have it all together. Re-reading this post, it almost makes it sound like I'm gathering it all together. Honestly, I'm going to probably be an emotional wreck tonight. Home is where I can be myself, relax, live. I don't want to go back to the chaos, to school. Sure, I really really want to see people again, but I'm not ready. I'm broken, reluctant. Help!

Double Post Day --- Part 1

Happy Labor Day and Multitude Gifts Monday! :) Here goes a continuing list . . .

41. Sunshine yellow pansies from my Grandpa, the fulfillment of his word.

Earlier in the summer, Sister got sick, and he brought her beautiful red Gerbers. He told me with a grin that if I ever got sick, he'd get me flowers too. Well, a little before and during my family's road trip in early July, I got sickish. By the time we were back, I was fine. Anyway, Grandpa remembered his word and with Grandma bought me and suprised me with these cheery, yellow pansies. :)

42. That Grandma remembered I liked yellow. Her mind isn't always very quick these days.

43. Make believe African hunting trips with kiddos I babysat last week.

44. One last day of summer vacation.

45. Given bouquets of shining flowers.

46. Serving a meal assembly-line style with other girls in youth group at Church event.

47. Conviction of sin scum in my life. Awful feeling, but now, Lord willing, God and I can take care of it.

48. Eating Sunday dinner with dear older friends and being blessed by their stories.

49. Being blessed by elderly people after siniging and playing instruments with Mom and Sister for them.

I've got to take a quick moment and share a story about that one. So it was a hymn sing service that my Mom, Sis, and I were playing at and part of the service included the elderly people choosing songs for us to sing. Well, Mom had me playing piano cold turkey, and I completely fumbled across some of that music. (Now why in the world did they have to pick songs with 5 flats or 3 sharps??? smile) It was so discouraging, and I felt failure-ish. After the service, an elderly man came up to me, shook my hand, and thanked me. He made some comment about me playing piano and being able to sight read. I told him that I made so many mistakes. And you now what he told me? We couldn't hear them. I know this is so grotesquely cliche, but I grudgingly came up with music for this hymn sing out of an awfully selfish spirit. Mom reminded me that we were there to do it for Jesus and to bless those people. They were the ones who blessed me. Such a gift . . . one that I would try to grasp and stick in a mason jar if I could. :)

50. A new baby cousin-once-removed. She's beautiful!

I still don't understand how a girl can actually have a girl (or boy) inside of her?! Our God is miraculous!

51. Unsweetened ice tea . . . Mmm.

52. A Garden to Keep by Jaimie Langston Turner . . . so sad I had to finish it last night. Kinda wish it could have just gone on and on and on.

53. A new haircut -- yay for short-er hair!

54. A good walk and talk with Friend.

55. Seeing friends at school's orientation and seeing classmates who won't be going to my school this year - - I'm gonna miss 'em tons, but it was a gift to see them. :)

56. Laughing with Sister in car on Saturday.

57. One last birthday surprise for Sister -- her Friend spent the night.

58. Fast paced game of Dutch Blitz.

59. Proverbs 3:5-6 -- verses that I've been seeing everywhere lately! A hint from Heaven?

60. Set aside moments of silent prayer.

61. Reminder that when it comes to trials, God's people have gotta be good sports. We wear His "jersey," bear His name.

62. Hearing a two-year-old call me "Miss Danae."

63. Long phone chats with Friend.

64. A fresh cupcake, decorated as artwork, given as a gift in a fancy cupcake box. :)

65. Figuring out that I have classes with some of my dear friends!

66. Communities of prayer.

67. Homemade taffy! :)

68. Singlehood.

69. Beautiful hymns played classically, peacefully on a free cassette my Mom got recently . . . I know, casettes are olden days, but there's still treasures found among the ranks. :)

70. God's enablement of me playing violin and of owning a violin. An indescrible gift and an answer to a child-prayer.

I know this is a little longer of a list than normal, but as I was writing them out last night, I couldn't stop! I am overwhelmed with Heaven-blessings. Jesus has given me so much!

I hope your day is filled with Gift-Counting. :) Happy Monday!

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae

Monday, August 31, 2009

Another Counting

Happy Monday! It is again a day of new counting. Join me?

26. Old flannel shirt . . . my Daddy's.

27. Shining summer sunflowers

28. Laughing with cousins Saturday, what a gift.

29. Family dinner at Pioneer Villa . . . fellowship and oh how delicious the food. :)

30. A summer job, lived long and now finished.

31. No big injuries as I watched over kiddos the past three months.

32. Daddy's birthday . . . his life held with such value. (I love you, Daddy! So much!)

33. Sister got her license! An answered prayer. Nerves relax.

34. Fresh, succulent blackberries and blackberry milkshakes . . . MMM!

35. Sweet August . . . memories

36. Playing freeze tag, choosing to be young.

37. A sky punctured with radiant stars.

38. Celebration service at Church . . . a new man giving himself to lead us.

39. Five young, energetic boys in Sunday School.

40. "Grace greater than all my sin." alleluia

Live! It's a brand new day. :)

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae

Sunday, August 30, 2009


So, I wanted to get another post in before my 1000 gifts post tomorrow (Lord willing). :) I was cleaning out one of my drawers yesterday, and I found a sheet filled with C.S. Lewis quotes that I had typed out from the book Mere Christianity, which I HIGHLY recommend by the way. :) Anyways, I wanted to share with you a quote that I really like, one that makes me desire to reach further, to be more like my Savior. It goes like this:

"Every now and then one meets them [men that Christ has made new]. Their voices and faces are different from ours: stronger, quieter, happier, more radiant. They begin where most of us leave off. They are, I say, recognizable; but you must know what to look for. They will not be very like the idea of 'religious people' which you have formed from your general reading. They do not draw attention to themselves. You tend to think that you are being kind to them when they are really being kind to you. They love you more than other men do, but they need you less. (We must get over wanting to be needed: in some goodish people, especially women, that is the hardest of all temptations to resist. [how true of me at least]) They will usually seem to have a lot of time: you will wonder where it comes from. When you have recognized one of them, you will recognize the next one much more easily."

Oh, Jesus, make me new.

Today was a big day. It was the "installation" service of a new associate pastor to my church, a celebration. It is the day that I found out that one of my dear older friends has the healthy use of only 30% of his heart, bad news. It is the day that I figured out that yet another church member has cancer. It's hard to be made new, to stand strong upon a Rock that never fails, when the torrents fall heavy, and heart splinters under its weight. I'm really not feeling that discouraged right now, but I think that if I dwelt on it, it would hurt. Last Sunday for special music, a young mom with twins and her aunt beautifully sang the song "In Christ Alone." Here's a link to hear it on youtube. It's beautiful! Part of the lyrics go like this:

"This Cornerstone, this Solid Ground,
Firm through the fiercest drought and storm."

I love that. I love that He's the Solid Ground now for the storms that might come later. I love that the Rock is SOUND for all the future storms that I WILL travel through. Guaranteed. It is also capable of holding us through our present flash floods and storms. He is enough.

Other lines that stick out are "Light of the world by darkness slain / Then bursting forth in glorious day / Up from the grave He rose again." I love this: "Jesus commands my destiny," and "Sin's curse has lost its grip on me." alleluia. If you want to be blessed, take some time to read the lyrics and listen to the song. It's incredible!

I hope your Sunday was a day on the Rock, resting in the One who has made all the difference. :)

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae

PS See you tomorrow for more gift tracking Lord willing! :)

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Child Heart

I wanted to share with you an adorable story my mom told me yesterday. Now my mom is one of my heros. She's an RN (registered nurse) who is working for this little 10 year old boy with a ton of disabilities. I believe he has cerebral palsy (?), is legally blind, completely deaf, and probably has the amount of brain usage as a toddler. He must be fed and have his diaper changed. Well, anyway, my mom so very lovingly takes care of this kiddo around 2 - 3 days a week, and often times, she is able to get some smiles out of him. Sometimes, he even tries to wrap his arm around her. She's told me that sometimes, when he seems to be really uncomfortable, she'll say a prayer outloud for him (my mom is such an incredible prayer warrior . . . but that's another story!), and he seems to visibly relax. (Have I told you before that our God is a miracle worker?!)

The parents have this child go to a school for kids with disabilities where he's able to do some things. My mom normally goes with him during the days she works, and school is going on. I love to hear stories of some of the other kids that go to the school. They're so in need of love and so beautiful, even if the world has tagged them "abnormal" and "disabled." I think some of those kids are a lot closer to heaven than we are some days. Anyway, yesterday, mom was telling me a story about this little boy I'll call Justin. He's a young blind boy, maybe 8 or 9. Yesterday, he turned toward my mom and told her these precious words,

"Julia, I like your haircut."

Did I mention he was blind? :) I love how innocent and precious Jesus has made children. I love how He invites them close to His heart. I love how I am called to be a child. I am called to be innocent, moldable, teachable, obedient. Often times, I feel so child-like. So young. But sometimes, it's when I am young that I can truly experience the security and love of God Almighty being my Father. A precious, indescriblable miracle.

I hope you can smile today . . . :) May our child-hearts be turned towards the Light, the King.

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae

Monday, August 24, 2009

One Thousand Gifts

Today is "Multiple Gifts Monday" . . . a time to count the gifts from our Heavenly Dad's hand. I'm on my way to one thousand. Will you join me?

11. Fresh, buttery corn on the cob

12. Bright blue eyes of giggly Child

13. Streamers cascading and rising on ceiling, a surprise

14. A new day of summer vacation . . . only two weeks and a day left . . . each day a gift.

15. Answered prayer . . . a child has been found

16. Light shed on who I am . . . it's sharp but good.

17. Meeting Book-lover . . . soon to be friend Lord willing.

18. Fresh blackberries

19. Walking through a field in bright sun

20. Small, brilliant balloons

21. Visitors in Sunday School yesterday

22. Sister's birthday and life

23. Blog updates by Friend(s)

24. Homemade ice cream

25. The promise that "Jesus commands my destiny." alleluia

Put your hand to your heart today and feel its pulse. In VBS this year, one of the leaders told the kids that the beating of their heart was a reminder of God's incredible love for them. Feel it . . . may God's love pulsate throughout your heart and soul. Have a glorious day!

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Dearest Sister . . .

Dearest Sister,

It is your birthday today, and ya know what?! I'm so glad to be your sister. I hope your day was a sweet one . . . I love you truly. :) Never ever forget!!!!!

Love from,

Friday, August 21, 2009

Number Six

"Pick a number between 1 and 66," I told the 9 year old girl I babysit yesterday.

"Six." She answered. I was surprised she didn't ask why as I turned to the sixth book in the Bible. Now I am a true believer in divine appointments and circumstances, and I think this was a divine situation indeed. Previously, I had read Ann Voskamp's daily post which can be found here. It spoke of courage and how courage and humility are tied together. Anyway, a little later, I had asked Girl if she'd give me a number and "six" brought me to Joshua. Later, these are the words I read:

"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9 NIV

By nature, I am not a strong person. At all. I am very weak, very "nice," very safe. I keep a big space between danger and myself. I have this strong admiration for strong people though, especially strong women. For instance, I met a very strong Lady yesterday. She has a lot of love but knows how to be firm in love, knows how to raise four kiddos while they're daddy is fighting for us. And you know what? I want to be strong. It didn't really hit me until last night and this morning that I'm commanded by God to be strong. To be Courageous. To NOT be discouraged. And how can I be all this? Because "God will be with [me] wherever [I] go." WHEREVER! I want to tell the truth, even when it hurts. I don't want to apologize for being used by God to convict even when it's uncomfortable.

Well, I better wrap this up. I need to start bouncing into action and get somethings done besides publishing a post. :) Have a lovely day! Be strong!

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae ;)

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Leftover Stew

Okay, so I really don't have much to say, and yet, I have everything to say in the same post. Hmm . . . so this might turn out to be a little like leftover stew . . . the ingredients being a little of this and a little of that and whatever's leftover, you know?

So, today I met this fantastic family that I'll be working for occasionally. It's mom, big sis, brother, little brother, and little sis. Dad's in Iraq . . . missing those kids and his wife I'm sure. I can't wait to serve 'em and love 'em, hope that God uses me, uses my broken pieces.

As I think about some of the past posts I've written, I feel like I've kinda distorted my image. Sometimes, it's quite easy for me to do that. I so enjoy writing, crafting words into webs of art. Often, I go through tough circumstances and imagine myself talking about it later to a big crowd or writing about it as if my story gives me value. But words and stories are nothing when wrapped in paper. They must be real. Transparent. Open. Full of rough edges and sometimes even loose strings. And sometimes, sometimes experiences are sacred . . . words spoken have power to break sacredness. I must remember. Forgive me when I get carried away with poetry and forget to write out the true lining and throbbing of my heart. I want to be real.

Speaking of real, brokenness is a condition I'm quite used to by now. It's a very hard condition to experience yet one laced with grace. But you don't always feel the grace. No. Sometimes, you feel deep pain. Sometimes, you don't feel anything at all . . . and sometimes, that's what hurts the most. I am a broken, prideful, sinful, weak person, but Jesus is holding me up, redeeming me. He is changing me. Breaking me. Speaking Life to me. Singing over me. And one day, I will live with Him forever. I will truly be who I was meant to be before the beginning of time. And you will be too, if He is the Lord and Savior of Your life.

I don't want to present you with the picture of who I want to be. I want to show you who I am. Not sure how that's going to work, but I'll see what I can do. :) Anyway, the night is fleeing from me, and I must end this leftover stew. :) Have a wonderful night, wherever you are, whoever you are. :) You are precious in the sight of God. It's true . . . I know. :)

Yours truly,
just Simply Danae

PS Christina Marie, I love you! Thank you for your post . . . it made me smile. I hope this random-ish post makes you grin. :)