a gift for a dear friend missed…


I swear to you that not even three days ago I was on my therapist’s couch, telling him that I felt I was being reshaped, I had no clue into what, that it was scaring the shit out of me, and that I was thrilled at the prospect…

…and now (after having a fantastic lunch with a kind, gentle, and loving woman of faith that prepared my heart for this) I was standing up looking at two authors, two missional ministry leaders, two women that found Christ (either for the first time or again) later in life (late 30’s and beyond) and asking them did they grieve for the time before they came to Christ.

They didn’t. They thought that it enhanced what they were doing and gave it a depth they wouldn’t have had otherwise.

After 2 years (?!!?) of worshiping and studying Reformed theology as a PCA presby, this evening listening to Progressive Christians as outside my comfort zone (!??!). Starting with a high church hymn in a beautiful building followed by well written and profanity laced wit struck a chord. Listening to Nadia Bols-Weber with her tats, her love for Christ, her desire minister to saints and sinners alike, her foul language and her seminary training and her ministry, I felt like a child hiding just out of site and listening to her parents watch something naughty on TV. Something that they sent you to bed so they could watch in peace, assuring you that you were too young and you would understand when you got older.

I still had that feeling when I went to the choir room to buy the book above and moved to the book signing line. A sweet woman with a stack of sticky notes asked me who I wanted the book signed to.

I tried to say my name and it wouldn’t come out.

Then I realized that this was not for me; this was a gift for someone in the future. This book was for someone that I had locked away, ignored and pretended didn’t exist. Someone I knew had time to grow, but I was uncertain if they had. Someone I knew would find it shocking, scandalous, and maybe unChristian… but would hold it close to their heart.

I took another moment to think (the sweet lady was also a patient one), and asked to write it myself.

“It’s a gift for a dear friend”

She smiled, placed the sticky in the book on the correct page and went on to the next person in line.

I didn’t look inside (frankly I couldn’t believe that I was going down this path again, either, but oh well…) and fixed my gaze on Nadia as she signed and smiled at my tats.

I walked to my car, placed the book in a safe place and drove home and when I got home took a look.

The irony is not lost on me and only a few will get it… don’t ask me why I did this. All I can tell you is that it made and still makes all the sense in the world to me.

only a few will get it...

only a few will get it…


I think that reaching 40 and thinking over the last year(s) has clarified not only who I am, but who I am no longer.

I am no longer a fiction writer… yeah, I write the words, but I have no desire to create in that way again. I created a universe that was distroyed by a man I loved and trusted and I know that I will never be able to recreate that world again. Allazar was a universe that I created to escape the pain of a life defined by abuse and the lies that were told to maintain it. It was a world without limits while my life growing up was defined by the strictest of boundaries laid by men in the name of a cruel and petty ‘god’.

I am no longer a pen and paper RPG’r. That was an essential part of my life before. D&D, Champions, White Wolf, ShadowRun, and Marvel helped me escape very dark parts of my life. They were essential in helping a shy and quiet girl connect to a community that was my life here in Austin. But things have changed; I’m not the same girl (I am a woman) and I have a full life that I don’t want to escape from. That, and I prefer video games…lol.

And once I realized that, I’m now responsible for clearing those things out of my life to give room for the woman I really am. So I started in the most logical place…

My office.

That was harder than I thought. Going through that space charged strong memories…most of the artifacts there I remember exactly where I was and how I got them. They bring a smile to my face… hard, breath-stealing laughter… and long jags of bitter tears.

One by one, I have removed the things that are no longer part of my life out and each time I can feel my focus sharpen.

I’m still flawed, but I am not stuck. I’ve stopped asking myself what I did wrong and what I could have done. What’s lost is lost. The life I have is so good… I’m highly educated with a career and a job that I love, happily and well married (with inlaws made of awesome), girls that have surprised and delighted me by becoming strong, capable, self-sufficient women. Morgan has been able to work, go to school, and live with a roommate under her own steam. Taylor is on her way… I will be an empty nester with disposable income and time to fill as I please.

My best days are not behind me… my failure to live up to the ideals and goals set in my youth sadden me, but it doesn’t stop me… and it most certainly mean that I can’t create new ideals and goals for my next 40 years.

I am not grasping for the gilded ‘glory’ of my past and I don’t want to relive it. I want to push out of what is comfortable, push out the ruts I have gotten myself into

I want to move onto better things and greater adventures, built on the foundation of lessons learned.

This is the story of my 40th year… Clearing out the old and the dead to nourish the new…

[church visit] Crosspointe (or God always does the wrong thing too late….)

I would love to say that I was following a call to visit CrossPointe on the first Sunday on 2013. In all honesty, I received a call from Holly to go to the movies with her, so I decided to make a church visit to one of the PCA churches that I drive by on the way to All Saints: CrossPointe Presbyterian.

The sermon I ended up learning from (because I *still* think I am a bit more clever that our Lord) was on the death of Lazarus. I was reminded that God is sovereign, He allows bad things to happen because “it is for God’s glory so that God’s Son may be glorified through it.” (John 11:4)

This was needed a bit more that usual. The span between Sept and Jan has been marked with loss (past and present) and I am grieving pretty hard about it.

I spend a lot of time with “what if…”and “why didn’t I…” and “why didn’t he/she/they…” and “why would he/she/they…”

I spend a lot of wanting my old life back. I spend a bit more time knowing that I can’t go back. And I have been spending a lot of time lost.

I fight against putting faith in God because it will result in an outcome that I did not choose, a path that I cannot control. And right now I don’t want anything I can’t control.

This sermon and the passage highlights Mary and Martha during this time. They waited for Christ for 4 days as they watched Lazarus get sick, fail in health, and die. They knew that Christ didn’t need to be there to heal him. They knew that He was not all that far away and CHOSE to wait another two days before getting up and going to them, allowing Lazarus to die.

Many people (including more than one person that I tried to talk to about this) want to glaze over these points. But doing that in my view is missing the glorious, beautiful point of the passage.

Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if only you had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that God will give you whatever you ask.”

It’s the humanity of this passage. Martha and Mary suffered. And when Jesus finally saw fit to show up, they let Him know it. They let Him know about their pain and their disappointment in the outcome.

But they still believed.

They still had faith.

And Jesus performed a powerful miracle. When He was ready.

To us it will seem that God should do this or that when we think He should. And with our narrow view set our hearts on the so-called “right course of action” and the “right time”.

But to One with a larger view it is the right time with the right lesson.

I just have to hold on a little longer.

the lower case ‘him’ I love….

I’m writing this on a Sunday morning at about 6:30am, watching as my husband sleeps peacefully (and snore free at the moment) next to me.

I do this often. And it’s one of the highlights of my day.

Since I have started the Path of Discipleship, I have had to face the reality that my husband was not interested in being more than a self described “twice a year” Christian. And the thought of being on this path without him saddened me and angered me for a long time.

I wanted a Christian husband, dammit! I deserve this! This road is hard and the last thing I want to is to do this by myself!

And I would dream what it would be like to have a husband that was a Christian like I am becoming. And the more the thought about it, the more I prayed about it and the more I prayed about it, the more I woud find myself looking at him sleep.

And the same question always came up:

Who is this man I married?

This is a man that never (never) lied to me. He gave me the truth even when he knew it would hurt himself and his worldview. He gave me the truth even though I didn’t want to hear it because it bursted my ego into little pieces. Then we make a plan to change our perspective.

This is a man with a cool confidence; he knows his strengths and his weaknesses. Where change is needed, he addresses it and makes very. glacially. slow. moves. to. change. them.

This is a man that doesn’t need the constant stroking of his ego; as a matter of fact, he doesn’t want or need the company of people that won’t shoot straight. He was raised by wonderful people that believe that if you can’t handle the truth, you can’t handle their company (and I adore their company).

This is a man that is willing to face his faults. Does he like it? Hell no! (who does?) But he will explain his viewpoint and why he thinks it’s important and (the essential point here) will listen about how they are seen and what effect they have. He will argue, but he will listen. He will fight, but he will always (always) reinforce that we are still friends after everything has been said.

And I think, in the end is the central point.

We have sometimes been more roommates than husband and wife at times, but we have always (and always will be) friends.

He is my closest and dearest friend and I am his.

He has worked harder than I am willing to admit at times to keep and maintain this friendship and for that reason alone I will always be at his side and work to be the wife that he deserves…

and even if it means that I will travel this one Path alone, he is still with me. And a life without him as my dear friend and husband is a life that I don’t want (he points out that he has to die first for the same reason….lol).

Thanks be to God.




[500 words on] Looking to the Lows…

The past few weeks have been really low for me. Thinking about the son I lost, working hard and not sleeping enough, dealing with loss of a community during a time when I want community the most.

And this week was the worst, emotionally. I was tired, I still needed to work, and Bill wanted to me to cook instead of cooking as he promised. I was at the end and all I could think of was trying to find a way to escape. Trying to find some way to make myself feel better, to make myself feel valuable, like I was worth something. My mind went back to my traveling days, the best years of my life.

I remembered that when I was traveling I didn’t worry about that. I was more concerned with working when I could, saving money, streamlining my life to the point where all the things me and my children owned could be carried in three backpacks. It was good a good life….


Because I wasn’t trying to find a way to make myself feel like a queen. I wasn’t looking for someone to make me feel better about my self. I was simply living, searching for joy in what I had and in the lessons that I learned from using and being happy with what I had.

I had forgotten that craving attention and looking to people, or how you look, or what or who you know are temporary. Oh yes, it is sweet when get a taste, but you never really have it, it never lasts as long as you want it to, and you are willing to give up more and more of your life to get a another taste of that false glory.

The taste never gets bigger, but the cost always does until you have lost everything.

I had left the [cult]Church, where many women clawed and bit to gain a little bit of status, as we were considered less than by the [cult]Church leadership. They put on heirs, they belittled, they manipulated, they cried and whined, they put out, they felt entitled. And I didn’t want anything to do with them.

It took my dear friend Lucas to remind me:

They’re doing this because they have nothing; those little tastes of glory is all they have. They are too weak to look to the lows of their life, address the truth that they are nothing and find joy where they can in that. Promise me that you will never waste time feeling sorry for yourself. Face your weakness, your flaws, your bad choices and be glad that you had the good sense to learn a lesson instead of chasing a fantasy. Queens must have subjects and subjects choose who they will follow. You can show off as much as you like, but if you have to show out to get attention, you are nothing more than a brat in a pretty dress.

I forgot this. I won’t again.








[everyday worship] Crossfit 11-19-2012


This WOD is a benchmark…

This WOD has a name.

Her name is Helen, as you can see in the image.

Helen and I have met before. That time she made me cry and she made me puke a little.
We spent 15:09 minutes together and in that time we ran 400 meters (a hair under a quarter mile) did 21 kettlebell swings (using 18 pound kettlebells) and did 12 ring rows. Then we ran again, did the swings again and did the ring rows again… then we did all of that one last time.

No breaks. No air in my lungs (only fire) and there was some puking. I thought I saw Death coming… it turned out to be Justin to help me up off the ground.

Helen was harsh and I didn’t want to see her for a very long time.

So you can imagine how hard I prayed and cursed the white board when I saw that she was gracing me (I was the only one at the 7pm workout) with her presence.

Things were a bit different. No fire in the lungs (there was still not enough oxygen), and while I did puke, Death was not there (Tired and I Can use a Burger Right Now were there, however) and I shaved nearly a minute off my time.

And I did 3 sets of 5 Power Cleans at 75 pounds afterwards.

It is places like this that I find the encouragement to follow the path. It is hard and it will always be, I reckon, but with each time, it gets easier, or you know what to do or it doesn’t bother you as much, or you see more clearly than you did the last time… you get the idea.

And progress may not be HUGE, but the difference you see when you think that you are making no progress can make all the difference…

Not if you’ll excuse me, I have a date with Epson Salt.

[everyday worship] crossfit WOD 11-14-2012

The Workout Of the Day (WOD) for 14 Nov 2012… it hurt…

I wanted to worship today… so I decided to go to Crossfit.

It sounds silly on the surface, but when you think about it (or at least when I think about it) it actually makes sense (to me…)

You walk into the box and look at the board. You see the Workout of the Day, or WOD, and you know what’s involved. You know that it’s going to hurt. You know that you will run out of air before you run of workout.

But you do it anyway. You know that it will make you stronger. You know you will have to dig deep. You know that you are competing against your desire to stop and go to the closest Krispy Kreme.

And I know that those are the times that I pray the hardest.

And I do pray. And when I am done I praise Him because I know that it was only through Him that I survived.

This is the essence of worship. So I went to Crossfit.

[the path] …all’s well that ends well….

Believe it or not, this is a good ending. What follows is an email exchange with a former friend with which I was reconciling I asked to lunch and was declined as he felt uncomfortable with me one on one:


I am still a bit perplexed about our conversation today. I don’t understand how having lunch with a former friend (one on one, during the day, and in public) can cause discomfort while having an exgirlfriend spend the night at your home (alone and in private) does not.

Morality (and common sense, frankly) would dictate that opposite would be true as there much greater chance of immorality in a private home in the middle of the night with a girl that has been drinking and has been making noises about how she is isn’t entirely sure that she still isn’t in love with you (I spoke to her Friday, btw) than in a restaurant. under any circumstances. period.

I’m sure you will say that I am blowing this out of proportion and if I am, then I ask you to explain your logic to me, because without clarification, this sounds like a slight. I am trying so very hard to keep things [civil…there was a typo here] and not think the worst of you. I also think that most times I am the only one that wants us at peace for any reason other than looking good at church (which tickles me because God sees everything that you do and judges accordingly).

Set me straight,


The response:


You need to ask yourself why you’re making a big deal about why I won’t have lunch with you. There’s no reason for you to even ask this question. You know I don’t trust you, that I hate being pushed into anything as I have made abundantly clear–and as [a mutual friend] has told you as well. If I don’t want to have lunch with you or spend one-on-one time with you, that’s fine. You need to respect that. Questioning why is only going to aggravate me. It makes you sound like a jilted girlfriend. If I say no, I mean no. And no means no. Don’t poke the bear.

As far as [her name] goes . . . [her name] and I are friends. We haven’t been girlfriend/boyfriend since High School days. In all the years I’ve known her, she’s never done anything to shake my confidence or manipulate me. She is trustworthy. You are not. In the few years I’ve known you, it’s been the opposite. Your constant drama, attempts at manipulation, and false accusations of wrongdoing destroyed our friendship. I will not tolerate such again.

I’ve told you before that I don’t like being pushed. That means don’t constantly question my decisions. If I say I don’t want to do something, that means I don’t want to do it. As for my part, I wish you no ill will at all. I never have nor never will go and sabotage your friendships or intentionally hurt you in any way.

As to being at peace, I very much desire peace. I enjoy living a peaceful, settled life. That’s part of who I am. Always has been. I avoid drama as much as possible. So, no, you’re not the only one who wishes it. When you called to apologize to me, it was truly a great burden lifted. And, yes, I happily forgave you. It was appreciated. I’m in no hurry to be friends. If it happens, it happens. If not, we can go to the same church and have the same friend group and be at peace without being friends.

I’m going to set up a boundary here: we may speak on Fridays. Other than that, I don’t want any other calls from you. Emails and text must be limited. Don’t invite me to go do stuff and don’t pester me about it. Don’t question when we’re going to be friends again. If I want to call or you spend time with you, I’ll initiate it.

My response:

Lunch was settled. You said no.

I asked about your logic. I admitted that I didn’t understand and I asked you for a window to your world. I’m sorry that it upset you.

I asked you was there a friendship to be had. I asked because I don’t think that there is. I tried so hard because I think that deep down I just wanted to say that in the end we saw eye to eye and that this part of my life ended well. That was what I wanted to say face to face Wednesday.

Feel free to leave the game (the 30th will be the last session) and there won’t be anymore calls.

Good Ending… Seriously! (yes, that was the entire exchange and I guarantee you that the phone conversation was very civil) but it is a very good ending.

Meet me on the next page and I will tell you why…

[randomness] Modern Day Tragic Clown

I had just woke up, took a few minutes to look over my tickets and replies (because I am always working because I <3 my work) and took a look through the news feed. There I found out that this was Paul Reubens, or Pee-wee Herman's, 60th birthday. The thought of that made me draw in a breath... Pee-wee Herman is 60? Well, that does make sense... he was in Cheech & Chong's Next Movie... that was what? 1980? I was 7? yeah.... I was 18 when they pulled his show off the air. That was, what 1991? wow... I went through tumbler to find a photo to add to facebook and found the one here. Something between the age of the man and the youth of the character touched me in a way that I couldn't explain. While I tried to find words, my friends chimed in: Deborah:

It’s quiet and pure and he’s so awesome….


He’s a modern day tragic clown – beloved and reviled at the same time.

With their help I could express what I saw:

they didn’t do the heavy makeup that made him look like a little boy… they kept his age (he’s 60…!!) and somehow we are still able to see the little kid on the Schwin and Chairry… but we also see that he, like us have gotten old…and it isn’t depressing because there is a wisdom and a sense of peace there….

and one other found the same:


I am with you concerning the aging thing. He looks peaceful and content with his aging. All that fun and silliness has been good to him. I always say laughter keeps my heart young.

When you are simply sitting still and looking into the camera, no mugging, no posing, and precious little makeup, your face and your eyes in particular will tell the viewer everything.

There was age there.

wisdom there.

and peace.

[devotional] But What do I Call You?

Moses answered, “I will tell the people of Israel that the God of their ancestors worshiped has sent me to them. But what should I say, if they ask me your name?

God said to Moses: I am the eternal God. So tell them that the Lord, whose name is “I AM”, has sent you. This is my name forever, and it is the name that people must use from now on

Exodus 3:13-15, Contemporary English Version

When I was a younger woman, I was in love with a God named Jehovah. Even after typing that name, I sit and think about all the love and hate I have for that name. I love the God that that name was to represent. I hate all the pain and suffering that the people that bore his name caused. But the name has strength, has purpose, and most importantly is a name.

With my return to the Church, I have started making steps toward restarting my relationship with ….


Hmmm… I am having a hard time with what to call Him now. I can’t and won’t call Him Jehovah. At this point and time, that name seems beneath my Eternal Lord. It is a name that the cowards and predators hide behind. It is a name that brings to mind megalomaniacal men and desperate, alienated, and blind followers, mostly women. Women who considered second class, washed up after a certain age, left to knock on doors in hopes that would make them righteous enough to seen fit to marry. It brings to mind the worse in religion and speaks nothing of discipleship.

But to have a relationship with someone, especially a close relationship, one needs a name. It is woven in the traditions and customs of having any kind of relationship with someone. When we first meet someone, we ask their name, we buy things because of the name of the product. We name drop, hoping to link our name with the reputation of the other name. When we marry, the woman takes the name of the man she has committed herself to. When we are close to someone, we even give them special names to demonstrate what we think of them and signify how close we are to them.

I didn’t know what to call Him. And this is a problem, because of all the years I spent worshiping and loving Him. He is very real to me, but I found that how he was represented was false. He was not a power mad, women-hating tyrant that wants to scare us into blind obedience. He isn’t an invisible cosmic bully. He loves us. He wants us to desire Him as He much as He desires us. I want to be close as I once was, but with this God; not with the God of the past. The name I called Him before does not live up to that.

So what do I do? I do what any girl who wants a relationship does, starts thinking about a special name for Him, one that means something to me and signifies that special bond that we have.

What do I call my husband and other men that I am close to?


(The theologians in the audience know where I am going with this. I swear- If you sick James Barr on me, I will cut you!)

Abba is Hebrew. In ancient times, it was translated “the Father” and is the main given to the Father of the Triune God. In modern Hebrew, it means “Daddy” (I think I hear a collective theologian cringe… it pleases me) and I want that kind of relationship with God… a love that is as close as a woman can have with someone without getting messy… or weird. A pure, loving relationship based on trust and truth.

So You are Abba. That is your name forever and what I will call you from now on…