Passion is a gritty kind of love, tough and

optimistic enthusiasm that overcomes negativity and inconvenience to make it

through to the end. (10,000 Reasons Overflow)

Monday, November 23, 2015

God's timing

I want what I want and I want it now...

That has always kind of been my theme. Oh see that.... I wish it were mine. And I go make it happen. And a lot of times it doesn't work out...

Maybe it was always meant I be mine but I rushed it.

Lately I have been equating God's timing to roast chicken. I love roast chicken but there is a certain amount of time we must wait before we can eat it.  It's got to be prepared (all the "chicken business" cleaned out). And then cooked. 

If you don't take the time to clean it out... Well you're bound to get some grossness. 

If you don't cook it long enough...
Raw chicken

Both of those are gross!!

So, yes, I equate chicken to God and his timing. I cook that what I do and who I am.

When I see something I want but I know I should wait, I just say to myself... 

Raw chicken 

And then pray.


Saturday, November 21, 2015

Grace and peace

It's been a long week.... Sure it had the same amount of days as every other week but my heart seemed to be on overload... Every day.

I find it sometimes amusing the lessons God teaches me or the books I feel drawn to right before something is about to happen.


We are in the middle of a series of grace and I think it's no coincidence.

Give it and receive it. Live it

I've seen some really scared people this past week.  When it comes to the world events I can't be scared. I've learned in the last few years that there is a reason why things our out of my control... It's not my "pay grade". I can't handle it. Someone higher on the totem pole needs to handle it.

I've seen fear manifest in many different ways in my life.  I'm angry, frightened, I cry, I'm crabby, I push people away. It comes in so many different experiences. Sometimes I don't even see it coming. But sometimes a light bulb goes off and I ask myself "what are you really afraid of?" Followed by questions like "can you do something about it?" And the one that hits me in the gut "don't you trust God?"

He says we have nothing to fear that He will take care of us, so we either believe him or we don't. I say I believe in God but do I BELIEVE Him?

So this week, I've been reminded of His amazing grace. To give it and receive it. And it reminds me how how much I need Him, how much I love Him, and how much He loves me.

Grace and peace to you.

And... If I hurt you this week, I'm sorry, it was never my intention 

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

My feelings today

It's a little rambly but I wanted to share my heart this morning ....

I have been so saddened in the last few days. I look at my Facebook and I see people I love in fear, I see Facebook full of hate, I'm saddened by people who are afraid to help others who are in grave need.

I'm sad. 

And I don't always express that well.

I grew up in east Dearborn. A city that has the highest population of Arabs outside the Middle East. 

I grew up with people who love God that were Muslim. Who peaceably assemble to pray and to fast during their holidays. I grew up with people who would give you anything and everything they had if you needed it. They take care of their family no matter how far away. Were they perfect? No.

I also grew up in a family that were Christians, where the patriarch of our family (my grandpa) hated people based on the color of their skin. (I'm so thankful for My dad who raised me so very differently than that). I grew up in a family where my cousin was a drug addict and on michigans top 5 offenders list for crimes that lead to feed that addiction. My family took me to church but never really told me who Jesus was. They didn't always live like him either, and sometimes they did. Were we perfect? No.

We moved to Lincoln Park when I was in 10th grade. Talk about reverse culture shock.. Someone asked me in my first week of school if I wanted to chase blacks out of the city, they called it "coon hunting". I was shocked, what kind of alternate universe did I move to? No one really lived out any sort of religion here, except for my friend "mend". She'd talk about church and God but id tell her they were a bunch of freaks. I could  of have been voted "least likely to love Jesus" back then. 

Fast forward many years, after much pursuit by God for my heart, I surrendered my life to Him. It took me awhile to get it. To learn about grace, mercy, and His never ending love.

Did this decision change the way I felt about my Muslim friends? Not one bit, maybe even made me have more respect that they live out their faith.

Fast really forward to current state of the world today. People fighting and trying to deny Syrian refugees who are in desperate need of our help. Our governor and a few others have said "we don't want them here". 

I'm saddened by Christians who are afraid of what will happen if we let them live here. Well, they have been living amongst you for a long time. I'm sad that we've forgotten that Jesus calls us to love, no matter the cost. 

I say with a very heavy heart, all this hate, if I didn't know Jesus now, if I didn't know of His grace, His mercy, I
Wouldn't want that Jesus that lives I the hearts of those who call Him Lord. 

I have friends who have lost family members because they couldn't get them out of Syria soon enough. Today I woke up and wondered how I'd get my steps in, other moms wonder if their children will live or how they will feed them. 

One of the girls in youth group, her favorite scripture was Romans 12:21 “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” That scripture is the one that comes to the surface of my heart in times like these.

It is not a religion that brings hate, but the person who carries it in their heart. 
I know I can't convince you that "they" aren't evil, no more than you can convince me that we shouldn't help them. I want to always remember that God wants us to love, even when it's hard and maybe I needed to remember that myself today. 

Love always wins, it has to.


Sunday, November 15, 2015

Go love

It's that time of year when people talk about doing good. We talk about it because maybe we are so blessed that we realize how much we have and we realize that others are without... A lot. Or maybe we realize that it's cold and it's only getting colder. 

Maybe you've seen all the tragedy that is happening on Paris (or Beirut or Kenya). It's awful and disgusting, hateful. 

People post a lot about how sad it is, but I'd like to ask you, if you're reading this, what are you going to do? Is all the sadness and tragedy enough to move you from your phone to do something?

I speak to a lot of people who think that most Christians don't do much. If it fits in our schedule we will do it, if it's one of our gifts or comfortable, then sure... But outside of that, well we are kind of quiet and we post crap on Facebook. 

It's time to stop being complacent thinking nothing is gonna change. Because with that kind of thinking, you're right.

To be honest I don't often know what to do. I'm just some chic who wants the world to be better. Evil makes me sad. It's heart breaking, people with cold feet is also heartbreaking to me. Maybe you think that's dumb but go ahead and go one day with cold feet. You know what else is sad to me? That kids aren't loved. People care more about how they look rather than caring when no one is looking.

Does that mean that sometimes I exhausted (that's what sabbaths are for), does it seems like nothing changes, until... Until I see a smile, or God gives me a little nudge. I certainly don't have it right most of the time. And that's the truth. I miss something or say the wrong thing, but above all else, want to love. Those I know, and those I don't. 

So I pray, and I cook, and I pray while I cook, and clean big lots that seem too big for me, or community gardens, or vacuum in heels... I don't know, but I know you can do something too! You can.  I'm not sure what, but you can, and love is never too small. Even the smallest rock makes a ripple on a pond.

Please today, with a breaking heart, I'm pleading. With you to go do something in the name of love.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Traveling in the sun

I never thought of myself as someone who loved to travel outside of hopping in the car to go up north and even then, I didn't do that too often because I was working all the time or on mission trips or I didn't have enough  vacation time. 

I'm about to leave for St. Louis (I've never been there before) and I'm just like wow... It's been a crazy year!

In January, May, June, and October I went to Colorado.

In March/April I went to Haiti

In April I spent 2 weeks in Germany 

I also went to Mexico for work in January

In July I went up North to Buckley to see my friends!

I went on two Detroit mission trips in July...

Today I'm in no rush. Normally there is a time frame... Today... I'm taking my time :) I hope to get a bump so I can travel more next year :) haha! 

I feel so incredibly blessed to have places to go where i am loved and a place to come home to that I'm loved. It really is like feeling the sun on a perfect day from both sides. 

Monday, November 09, 2015

I have loser friends ;)

I joined a weightloss competition with my “Loser Friends”.  I decided that this time in my life I was going to do things that I could do for my whole life.  Not the crazy things I’ve done in the past that I couldn’t maintain, like the time I only ate chicken, hummus, eggs, toast, green beans, and salad with vinegar and oil while working out 8 times a week (5 days, 3 of them 2 a days).

I will be honest, I almost didn’t join. For a number of reasons, one being that I am not going to win.  I just am not.  My friends are true competitors and they will win, me, I just want to be a better me, and I’d have to be crazy to win, and that doesn’t make me better, so who wants to lose $50. Not me.

And who wants to lose more than weight, not me. 

But I really prayed about it, and I joined.

I said “I just want to be a better me, and having friends to encourage me, and I want to encourage them.”

I have to say I really look up to my stepmom who works at weight watchers, but she’s also a member.  She’s kept the weight she lost for a long time.  I’d say her success comes from tracking, being consistent, and portion control. 

So I decided that I would do things to help me be a better me, which means being consistent and positive.

These are the things I did well:
Stayed within calorie count
Snacked on real food
I kept moving and met my step goals EVERYDAY
I ate more veggies & fruit
I didn’t rely on food in hard times
I took my nutritional supplements (vitamins) everyday
I walked at least once everyday
I read the bible everyday
I drank a gallon of water every day
I had yummy protein shakes everyday
I felt good
I was happy for my friends without feeling bad that I didn’t do well
I lost weight (even if it was only one pound)

Week 1 is down, and I am looking forward to being a better me a little more in the next 15 weeks!  Our Loser peeps lost almost 70 pounds of junk!  As I walked this morning, I prayed for all of us, that we have strength and perseverance to run the race set before each of us, and that God continues to work in our hearts to be more like who He has for us to be!

Sunday, November 08, 2015

Happy Holidays

I read this Facebook about how "Christians" are up in arms because Starbucks took Christmas off their cups. 

I'd like to say something that is moderately offensive (so click the 'x' at the top of you are easily offended)...

As a Christian I'd like to say something to those of you who are offended by the "happy holidays" thing. You are not the center of the universe. I'd prefer that if you're going to "spout off" that you didn't say you're a Christian.

First of all the "holiday" season has
More than one holiday during it. 
Yes, there is Christmas, but there is thanksgiving, Hanukkah, kwanza, New Year's Day (otherwise known as my birthday)

You are offensive when you speak sternly about what you believe. Just say "merry Christmas" you can. You know why? Because it's what you believe and what you celebrate. 

Whatever holiday you celebrate I'm begging you... Choose to live love and don't be an butthole. (I warned you about being offensive - you kept reading)

In a hurry - take a breath
Having a hard day - count your blessings
Feeling like something is missing - give to someone else
Feeling crabby - be kind
Someone says "happy holidays, say merry Christmas, happy Hanukkah, happy Margie's birthday" whatever, just be nice. 

Don't drink Starbucks if you don't want to, invest your $5-7 in someone else, buy socks for the homeless, I don't know, buy someone a treat... I don't care just don't be offended, just love someone... Plus I heard their coffee isn't that great anyway (I don't know because I don't drink coffee)

Friday, November 06, 2015

Love Somebody

I serve in the city of Detroit. I love the city of Detroit. I love the people in Detroit.

 Do you want to help people? Do you feel called to feed people?

 Then serve. Serve with other organizations that are doing it well. Don't try to make 100 sandwiches/snacks and take them out. Find an organization (like All are Worthy of Love) and support them. Many people are doing it right but they can't do it on their own. They need help, and they don't need you to "partner" with them, they need you to SERVE with them.  Adopt a school, ask them what they need. Do they need school supplies, or case of Kleenex, and clorax during cold and flu season. Ask them what THEY need not what you think they need. Maybe they need books to build classroom libraries. Literacy saves lives. I don't know, and the hard part might be that you don't see the instant gratification for your efforts. And also, it might not be Detroit. Maybe it's the city you live in. Kids are starving everywhere. Maybe it's a school in your neighborhood. Maybe it's a widow in your neighborhood who would love it if you brought over tea and cookies. Maybe you and some friends donate boxes of cereal to a school for distribution for the weekends. Warm socks, I love having warm feet, people in shelters or people walking to work are no different.

 I don't know. 

Remember this winter when God called me to do a community garden. I was just going to go out and put one on a lot. I had no clue what I was doing. I met with someone. She said... There must be a community to have a community garden otherwise people will trash it, the food will rot. So I found a place that did one last year that needed help doing one this year. I saw a lot of fruit from it. I talked to people who ate veggies out of it. A lot of people took veggies from it that I never saw, do you know how happy that makes me? You probably can't, and that's because its immeasurable! The community felt like it was theirs, and I LOVE THAT!!

There is a lot more to feeding people than food. Food is the smallest need met, the greatest need... Love. Food is just the one we see.

From the Metro Detroit area and need some ideas?
Joy to the D (Courage Church) or Hope for Detroit - meeting tangible needs for families and Christmas time and all year round. This is my church!

All are Worthy of Love - an organization that is working to stop sex trafficking in the city of Detroit by loving women and helping them get off the streets. The need people to help donate food, money for gas, and I'm sure lots of other stuff

Grace Centers of Hope - located in Pontiac, helping people overcome addiction by the Power Christ. They have temporary shelters, long term programs for men, women, families, and TONS more!

My Brother's Keeper - they provide meals M, T, Th, and Saturday of every week and have food distribution on Wednesdays.

Blessed Hope - a church in Lincoln Park that serves a meal TWO times a day! Lunch and dinner to people In their neighborhood.  They have food distribution and they really love people and let them know they are loved!!!

Want to get involved internationally? Now this I'm not super familiar with but I know some organizations that I trust.

 Poured Out - bring clean water to homes, schools, and areas of Haiti with bio-filters.
 Reach Out - meet the needs of love children in Haiti via the local church. You can sponsor a child for $15/month

 Little Dresses for Africa - built a school in Malawi. Showing children they are loved in many different ways and loving families
4-more - bringing clean water to orphanages in Rwanda (every dollar given gives a child water for a year)

 Isaiah's house in South Africa - loving people and meeting the needs of people in South Africa

 There are tons more!! Tons!!! You can do a one time collection for a family or support monthly. Give until you can't ;)

There is a crisis, people are dying, they need to be loved. I think everyone can do something.  Even $5 at any one of these organizations will help someone. 

Go love someone. Someone that you don't know <3 o:p="">

Tuesday, November 03, 2015

We danced

I was just in Colorado and ran into some people I had served with on my Colorado mission trip last year… and they asked me how things were going, like what I had been up to…  and so I kind of explained that things were really good!  And so they asked “Like what?” and seriously I sounded like a ray of sunshine… And all of a sudden I realized it, and I said “oh geez, things aren’t always great, but I choose to focus on what’s good and what God is doing”.

Man, I live in a weird way.  I’ve learned that the road to gratitude is the one worth traveling. 

I could focus on the friends I’ve lost or the hurt I feel, but really what will that get me?  I want to remember the good things that God has done, not what I’ve lost. 

I read this morning as part of my new “better me” plan…

Mark 7:14-23

14 Again Jesus called the crowd to him and said, “Listen to me, everyone, and understand this. 15 Nothing outside a person can defile them by going into them. Rather, it is what comes out of a person that defiles them.” [16] [f]

17 After he had left the crowd and entered the house, his disciples asked him about this parable. 18 “Are you so dull?” he asked. “Don’t you see that nothing that enters a person from the outside can defile them? 19 For it doesn’t go into their heart but into their stomach, and then out of the body.” (In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean.)

20 He went on: “What comes out of a person is what defiles them. 21 For it is from within, out of a person’s heart, that evil thoughts come—sexual immorality, theft, murder, 22 adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. 23 All these evils come from inside and defile a person.”

I want to speak of His glory, I want to shine the light of His love where I go, and save for the stuff that’s not so great with trusted friends and Jesus to work it out.  It’s not easy to see the good when yucky stuff happens but sometimes God saves us from things (or people) that will be harmful for our hearts.  Or when I have to wait for something… Ugh, I hate waiting, but I know it’s worth it….  I kind of compare it to cooking…  I love baked chicken but if I try to enjoy it before it’s done…  BLEK!  Raw chicken… Perfect timing, His perfect timing. 

Yesterday I was turned on the radio… but I was hooked up to my phone, and the song “We danced” by Bethel came on.  To be honest sometimes I hear Bethel and I sigh… I listened to them too much….but yesterday I listened to it with an open heart, and I thought about how intimate my time with Jesus is, and how it has changed my heart and my perception.  And what a difference that has made on what comes out of my mouth.  I’m so thankful for that time that we danced, and He lead me, and my heart.  I think of the times that I was so tired I couldn’t seem to go on, He more than just sustained me, He gave me strength, and hope to go forth. 

I’m so very thankful for my time with Jesus and the way it has produced good fruit in my life…

Here is the song…  and the lyrics.

You steady me
Slow and sweet, we sway
Take the lead and I will follow
Finally ready now
To close my eyes and just believe
That You won't lead me
Where You don't go

When my faith gets tired
And my hope seems lost
You spin me round and round
And remind me of that song
The one You wrote for me
And we dance

And I've been told
To pick up my sword
And fight for love
Little did I know
That Love had won for me
Here in Your arms

You still my heart again
And I breathe You in
Like I've never breathed 'till now

When my faith gets tired
And my hope seems lost
You spin me round and round
And remind me of that song
The one You wrote for me
And we dance
And I will lock eyes
With the One who's ransomed me
The One who gave me joy for mourning
And I will lock eyes
With the One who's chosen me
The One who set my feet to dancing?

We dance
Just You and me
It's nice to know I'm not alone
I found my home here in Your arms
It's nice to know I'm not alone?
I found my home here in Your arms
It's nice to know I'm not alone
I found my home here in Your arms

Monday, November 02, 2015

Thankful for friendship - real friendship

 I said goodbye to 3 little boys who wrapped me around their hearts long before I ever met them. And their parents.

Let me tell you, I love those boys more than I could ever even tell you.  But their parents, they are the real deal when it comes to friends. It's been years of real friendship, and in that comes a lot of things. Sometimes it's getting the other persons drink... Sometimes it's serving together, sometimes saying hard things that make friendships stronger. And sometimes it's living life!!

I have other friends like this, and I thought I had friends like that but it wasn't what I thought. I am not a fair weather friend or someone just to have around because I agree with you.  I want friends near and far that it's a mutual love and respect for each other that leads to honoring each other.

You see I'm not perfect (I know gasp right?) but if I need to work on something, then I will, sometimes I'm just too stupid to see it... And I need real friends who will be honest and help me to grow, and I want to have friends who want to be better too. 

And I know that there will be times when we hurt each other, that's living hearts wide open.  

I'm so thankful for real friends, who encourage, stretch me, and live in love and grace, and forgiveness. No Matter how near or far. (But when they are far-the see you laters are hard!)

Sunday, November 01, 2015


It's the first day of November and I see Christmas post already... Yikes.

My uncle, Father Jack (he was a priest) always loved thanksgiving. It's about what we have to be thankful for.

This month is about not shaving for men which is AWESOME!!! (ladies!!! Shave your legs that's gross!) but let's make it about what we are thankful for, what we already have vs. what we don't.

I can tell you... This Christmas already has way less pressure because it's gonna be a mostly homemade Christmas! And that makes me so very happy!!! To give people homemade yummy's for their bellies, using gifts God has given me seems so awesome (and kind of dorky at the same time, but I'm embracing my dorkiness).

Happy month of thanksgiving people!! If you have the book 1000 gifts, this would be a great month to read it (I gave it to most of my family for Christmas a few years back so if they haven't read it, I hope they do!)

Today I'm thankful for:

Beautiful skies in Colorado
A warm home to come back to
Sweet voices I can hear upstairs
Serving Jesus
A great church, that loves and serves Jesus and it's community 
A beautiful daughter ❤️