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How can you help?

“How can I help?”

What a BLESSING to have heard this question so many times over the last two weeks! I have had to apologize, because most often my answer has been “I don’t know yet.” A few times, it was just a whimpered “Sonic, please.” Really, the Sonic lady and I have become besties recently. She gives me extra Nerds in my slush, which we have now renamed the Stress Slush.

It is a wonderful and caring question. It’s also a question that triggers my pride. I remember that when Malachi came home, a friend offered to bring me a meal and I laughed heartily and said “Why no, friend! I’ll bring YOU a meal! I am most capable with my three, count them three, children!”…then hours later, cried in the fetal position in my kitchen while tossing my children potato chips out of the bag. I honestly assumed that since Malachi wasn’t a newborn, I would be FINE. I didn’t account for so many things, like how siblings would adjust or how meltdowns happen and can’t wait to be dealt with or how responding in a kind and consistent and quick way would emotionally and physically exhaust me. I was a dummy. A prideful shortsighted dummy.

I will not be a dummy this time. I can’t be. The truth is, this adoption is different. My four, count them four, children need me in a way that they never have before. We have big feelings here and big thoughts. Big questions and big reactions. And quite honestly, it is like boot camp right now, except a boot camp with calm gentle voices and playful interactions. But don’t be fooled- I collapse on the couch as soon as the upstairs is quiet and try to mentally unpack all the details of the day- did I respond the most nurturing way to her statement? Am I building rapport with her teacher? Did I show enough empathy to a hurting sibling? Did I put enough stuff in her hair? Did Malachi’s homework get done? What did that facial expression mean? Did I shower today??

So I decided that maybe it would be helpful if I wrote out some ways that you as family and friends, can support a family who has recently brought home an older child (many of these things will apply to bringing home a baby as well). One of my best friends has kindly offered to set up a care calendar for us and I am going to be a not dummy and embrace it with my gentle exhausted arms. (See below for information)  How can you help?

Pray. No, I don’t mean that in the Christian cliche way. I mean, sincerely pray. Imagine for a moment walking in to your friend’s house and they are drunk, having a panic attack, and climbing up the front of you. Add three more people who are only slightly less disheveled. Add a dog. Realize it’s time to make dinner. Someone asks you a mild theology question like “why does God allow pain if He loves us?”  This has been my house for a week.

Space and time. Typically, it is recommended that new adoptive families do something called “cocooning”, which just basically means simplify and close ranks. Especially with an older child, and a child who may have experienced trauma, their brains are firing away with stress hormones, and so some extended time in the home, away from lots of people, noise, and excitement is a good way to calm them down. It also gives the child, siblings, and parents time to begin attachment, and helps the child learn who they can and should trust to meet their needs. It’s so hard, because people get excited about adoption! Everyone wants to meet the new child and spend time with them…but the truth is, that child needs less people, not more. That child doesn’t need zoo trips and play dates, they need quiet books read to them while cuddling on the couch. Just ask- sometimes it will be fine, and sometimes parents will need to say no. But understand that when a parent says no, it is not about you, it is about meeting the needs of a vulnerable child.

Sibling Love. Ladies, have you ever been somewhere and been constantly called someone’s mom or wife? Have you ever had that feeling of wanting to say “hey, I am a person too- not just someone’s mom!”. Well, this can happen with siblings of a newly adopted child. You can bless a family by offering to take the siblings for a fun outing, or offer to drive them places that they need go. You can also do something as simple as engage them in conversation that has nothing to do with adoption. Realize that the siblings are adjusting too- and they won’t always be happy about it. Remember that they are likely grieving the loss of what they knew as their family. Remember the drunk panicking analogy earlier? Well, siblings are dealing with it too- only they probably don’t have the same coping skills as parents do.

Practical help. I’m being totally honest here- my brain is full. So the question- “what can I do to help?” is one that most of the time, I simply cannot answer. Last Sunday, my best friend texted me to ask me to lunch and I literally said to her “Choose a place and tell me where to meet you.” Organization and decision making skills are not high functioning right now, and they have been replaced by marathon rocking sessions and trying not to fall asleep while “making dinner” (ordering pizza). Some things that may help are meals (don’t forget breakfasts, mornings are often very stressful for new families), cleaning services, help with home repairs, playdates for older siblings, errands run, etc. The goal would be to free up the mom and dad from other responsibility so that they have the energy and time to just be slow and love that child. Older children don’t just seamlessly assimilate into families, they arrive, often prickly and self protective, confused and anxious and angry and grieving. And like when there is a death, we stop life. We focus on what is needed, what is important, and hopefully others come alongside to pick up the slack.

Adoption is beautiful. But it’s also grief and pain and loss. My baby girl is grieving and grieving hard. We all are.

So many of you have offered to help. We are so grateful. Here is a link to our care calendar, where you can sign up for various ways to help.

Calendar ID   :   218771
Security code :   6144

You can also email Cate Miller if you want to help in a different way-

“So listen, little girl, somewhere there’s a King who will love you forever and nothing in the world could ever come between you, my love, and this Lover, So when I kiss you at night and I turn out the light and I tell you you’re never alone, It’s the voice of Jesus calling you his own…”

My heart is full because of His gifts…and He is good.

My heart breaks because pain is real…and He is good.

My heart readies with the protectiveness of a mother…and He is good.

My arms have extended to fit one more…and He is good.

My fingers curl around another tiny hand…and He is good.

My throat catches as I grieve with her…and He is good.

My smile is bigger when I hear her laugh…and He is good.

My eyes cried with a new voice saying Mommy…and He is good.

My pain is soothed by promises of His justice…and He is good.

My life is changed forever…and He is good.

Meet Ella, our new baby girl. Our precious and loved daughter. Our most fun surprise. She is five and was born in Ethiopia, but has been living in the states for the last two years. We were approached about adopting her about two weeks ago, and through His sovereignty, were able to bring her home on Wednesday night. She is funny and sweet and spunky and lovey and kind and smart and has stolen all of our hearts. She is brave- oh my, how BRAVE she is. Not just the typical kid brave, the sliding head first down the slide brave, but a deep brave, emotional brave- the kind of brave I want to be.

He sees. He remembers. He doesn’t get distracted. He intervenes. And He is good.


“How do you say to your child in the night? Nothing’s all black, but then nothing’s all white How do you say it will all be all right When you know that it might not be true?”…

Dearest Friend,

You’ve felt it coming for a few weeks, I would imagine. It starts with a slight annoying tug that you don’t always recognize, and then maybe a commercial or sign catches your eye. Advertisers lunge to take advantage of this time of year to sell anything and everything they can imagine to those who wander the aisles looking, just looking for something that fits. The card aisle is littered with cards for Mother, Mom, Mommy, Stepmother, Mom in Law, and on and on. You look up above the cards to see a sign with a woman laughing and cuddling her daughter, their matching angelic curls backlit as the child hands over a daffodil and the mom’s eyes shine with the knowledge of being recognized. The card company helpfully separates their cards into humorous or serious, cartoons or flowers, but no matter how hard you look, you can’t find the sign that shows where the “it’s complicated” cards are.

Mother’s Day. Pause for a second to imagine me giving you a gentle hug.

Precious friend, I don’t take it lightly. I know how awkward it is for you, this day with sentimental videos in churches and restaurants full of moms with homemade pasta necklaces on. I know it’s a struggle with knowing what to say, either to your mom or to others about your mom. I mean, IS there a card to describe that combination of hurt and anger, confusion and yet still desire for a relationship? Is there a card that can speak of distance and coldness, shielded hearts and long distances? Where is the card that simply asks “Why?”

I would never hurt you more by suggesting that I understand or can fix your pain. Sadly, our society has come to a place where absent or hurtful fathers are viewed as unsurprising yet we often forget those who have been hurt by their mothers. We cling to the romanticized version of the selfless woman who bakes and gives pithy advice at the right time. Yet I know for some of you, your memories are…complicated. I also know the word complicated is the word you use because the true words you think are too painful to speak. So you bravely face this day, vacillating between avoiding thinking about it, and trying not to cry because your relationship with your mom was or is, not at all what you ever wanted it to be.

Can I talk to you, wearing my mom hat? Know that this hat is crooked and bent, probably from me throwing it at a wall. The halo that society wants to put on my head is dull and has a few dents, but not near as many dents as I have put into my children’s hearts over the years. I speak, not as that video mom, but as one who has sat up sickened and heartbroken over my mistakes.

I can’t tell you that your mom loves you. Oh darling friend, I wish I could give you that reassurance. But I just don’t know. But here’s what I do know- it is not your fault. Hear these words- IT IS NOT YOUR FAULT. For you who struggle with being hurt, know that your mom has struggles and pain that has nothing to do with you. Know that she is frail. I know that I am. Know that it isn’t that she doesn’t love you, it is that she isn’t capable of loving you the way that you want or need to be loved. We expect so much out of the concept of being a mother- as though all selfishness and fear, shame and guilt, destructive coping mechanisms and habits magically disappear when the baby is placed in her arms, only to be replaced by baking skills and a soothing voice. But here is the truth- being a mom is hard. It’s the hardest thing I have ever done. And my children don’t take away all my junk, they TRIGGER my junk. It’s not their fault (see above), but being responsible for shaping another life just adds fuel to a fire that I work to keep under control.

I don’t know why your mom speaks to you the way she does. I don’t know why she isn’t truthful, or encouraging, or why she chose that person over you. I don’t know why she pretends not to see your pain. I don’t know why she let that person hurt you or why she didn’t believe you. I don’t know why she never calls you or asks about your life, and only wants to complain about hers. I don’t know why she hates your spouse or treats your children like they are a bother. I don’t know why she makes jokes at your expense. I don’t know why your mom drinks. I don’t know why she chose drugs over you. I don’t know why your mom disowned you over your choices. I don’t know why your mom hit you and gave you away. I don’t know why. I am sorry.

But here is what I know. Sometimes “honoring” simply means a silent nod, a deep sigh, and a quiet prayer for forgiveness.

This sunday, when the beds are full of breakfast and the flowers have been delivered, you are being prayed for. Prayers that you’ll know it’s okay to cry and acknowledge that it should have been different. Prayers that you will feel the comforting weight of the One who IS a perfect parent, and longs to hold His child.

“I’m standing in the flames, It’s a beautiful kind of pain, Setting fire to yesterday find the light, find the light, find the light…”

Do you know how long my hand has hovered over the keys, afraid to hit “publish”?

I like to be good at things. I like my life to be functional, polished. I like to be seen as efficient and effective, capable and strong and brave. I’ll settle for okay, but I prefer talented.

The last six months have been an enormous time of growing for me, both mentally and spiritually, and I can say with certainty that one of the most important lessons I have learned about myself is that I am not good at endurance. I can rock the suffering…as long as I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Faith? I got it…as long as I can feel some sense of a lesson in the end. And to be totally honest, some of what I call peace may be a bit of shrugging and giving up. When you have a chronic disease, people kindly say things like “You are brave. I could never deal with what you deal with!”  Horse hockey. Yes you could. You would have no choice. I am not brave, I am afraid. I am not strong, I am terribly weak. I am not skilled at enduring, I am desperately hanging on.

But I love where I am.

Pain is a gift. Oh please, dear one who is struggling, please don’t click away in anger, because I know the feeling that this is ANYTHING but a gift. I know the desperate anger that comes with longing that has no ending, that feeling of just wanting one day, one hour of calm, before your body betrays you and reminds you yet again of your frail humanity. I promise I know, and I have cried plenty of angry tears too. But the pain that batters my body around, reminding me daily of lost time, lost ability, lost babies, that pain extends to batter my heart too and the bruising has made it softer.

But it’s not hard for me to talk about empathy. Empathy isn’t what keeps the hand hovering over the publish button. It’s fear and it’s shame.

I never realized until this year how we conceptualize pain as something to triumph over or give into. We celebrate unmedicated birth as though it is the strong women who can endure. We talk about high and low tolerances. We self describe, using words like “I’m a baby about pain”. We lift up athletes who play through the pain. We see pain as an event- it has a beginning, a middle and end, and like an Olympic sprinter, we give gold, silver, and bronze medals to those who sprint well, with minimal complaining. And the problem is that when you have only experienced a sprint, then a marathon can’t be understood. Sure, running is the common theme here, but that is where the similarities end and the fear and shame begins.

I remember a teacher in high school telling me once “Your reputation is all you really have!”  I don’t think he intended to, but those words stuck with me and made me terrified to ever disappoint anyone. In the last six months, I have had to disappoint people. I’ve had to cancel plans or say no more often. I’ve had to give less effort in order to save energy. I’ve had to rest when I really wanted to play. Shame.

I’ve walked to the pharmacy every single month with my head down, don’t make eye contact, and cried every single time I leave. Don’t get me wrong, my pharmacist has been wonderful, very kind and caring towards me. But the shame and fear I have felt is paralyzing. I hate it. On the outside, I look fine, totally healthy. They can’t see the pictures I saw of my surgery, with my insides bonded together from adhesions and endometriosis. So I fear being judged and critiqued. I fear being thought of as a wimp, a girl with a low pain tolerance, a girl who just can’t push through a little pain. Shame.

Be honest. Come on, you can do it. You’ve had those thoughts about someone. I know I have.

But here’s the gift- in some ways, that teacher was right- my reputation is a big deal. It’s just that I now have realized Who’s thoughts about me are important. I have to let go of the fact that there will be a person, doctor or otherwise, who looks at me and instead of seeing me, they will view my pain through their lens, and how they would handle it.  And I WILL come up lacking. I have to let go of the fact that there will be people, even people who dearly love me, who will secretly think I am just not doing the right things to deal with this disease. I get it- they are sprinters. The gift is that I can love and honor these people without letting their opinion of me hold me hostage in shame.

I don’t know why God has allowed me to suffer. That isn’t the part of the marathon that I get to see yet. But I sincerely would not trade this marathon for the sprint, and miss out on the utter joy of grasping onto my Daddy’s hand daily. The marathon is long, and difficult, and I need Him beside me. There is sweetness in being unable to do anything but pray. There is sweetness in insomnia and taking deep breaths and saying “hold on sweetie. Mommy needs a minute” and giving a hug to a friend who gets it because they are marathoning too. Somehow, that sweetness comes in and invades and chases the bitterness of shame and fear away.

So next month, I will try. I will try to hold my head up when I pick up my medicine. The walk from the car to the store is part of my marathon.

Deep breath. And publish.

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“I’ll help you be popular! You’ll hang with the right cohorts You’ll be good at sports Know the slang you’ve got to know so let’s start ’cause you’ve got an awfully long way to go…”

*She tiptoes in and looks around. Hello?, she asks, and hears the echo bouncing off the blog walls…*

I have reasons why I haven’t written. The beginning of school is always a difficult transition (true), I am working on managing my daily pain and trying to balance how to expend my energy (true), I have had writer’s block (true), I have been discouraged and overwhelmed by world events (true), Gilmore Girls came on Netflix (true. So true). I spent some extended time away this past weekend and realized that while all those reasons are true, the REAL reason comes down to the fact that my favorite color is gray.

I know. It’s weird. Stay with me please, I hope it will make sense in the end. First off, I need to defend my choice- I know gray isn’t the most logical choice for a favorite color. If you’ve ever been shopping with me, you’ve probably heard my theory that you could take any item of clothing and if you made it gray, it would automatically become 87% more comfortable. You can’t argue with science. There’s just something about the soft mix of black and white that seems cozy, comforting. A gray sky means snuggling on the couch with movies and a warm blanket. A gray sweatshirt swallows me in warmth and takes me back to walking through crunchy leaves on a college campus.

I like some gray in my thinking too. In my 20’s, I gravitated to the black and white, the right and wrong. Gray was scary, gray was disobedient, gray was BACKSLIDING. But the funny thing is, as I’ve gotten older I have become more convinced of what I believe to be true, and more convinced that my ways are not His ways. My gray now isn’t theology, it’s just the recognition that He is so much bigger than I ever thought He was. My gray now is more compassionate, slower to speak and quicker to listen. It’s the respectful recognition that His plans are bigger and better than mine, and they don’t always look like the Christian plan I have in my head.

So back to writing. Or, lack of writing.

Once you start blogging, it doesn’t take long before you discover the cool table. Some people are at the cool table simply because they sincerely and without guise are cool. They didn’t do anything except be who they are. Others are there by pushing other people around and striving to be at the top. Sometimes it’s really hard to tell these people apart (here’s a tip- watch what happens to them when someone disagrees with them on social media. It’s pretty easy to figure it out). Not only do you discover the cool table, you discover that you are supposed to want to BE at the cool table. On the walk to the cool table are words like branding, followers, conferences, stats, hustle, etc. None of these words are bad in of themselves but unfortunately as you navigate around those words, you can trip over arrogance, fear, harshness, rudeness. If I’m honest, I want to skip the entire room and hole up in my bed with my gray blanket and laptop. I don’t want the black and white of making a plan and goals and a chapter a day. I don’t want to hear about publishing or book proposals or speaker fees or amazon or

Now, it is tempting for me to just turn to a different kind of arrogance and claim to be above all that popularity nonsense. I don’t want that kind of foolishness either. So I realized this weekend that part of why I like gray is because gray is safe. Gray doesn’t require choices. Gray with it’s laissez faire lures me in with a lack of pressure and worry about publishing and success. And there’s no risk of failure. 

So here’s the deal. I don’t know what He has for me in this writing gig. I don’t know if I will ever be at the cool table. I don’t know if I am supposed to want to be there either. I don’t know if I will write a book or be published. But I am so glad that He knows. I am so thankful that my only job is to be faithful.

Friends, would you pray for me? Would you pray that I will not embrace fear, and instead step out, knowing that He know exactly what is going to happen? Would you pray that I will be faithful to what He’s asked me and gifted me to do, and not get caught up in what I think I am supposed to care about? Would you pray that I will only choose His way, and I won’t be attracted to the world’s definition of success?  Will you pray that I will chase the butterflies, and not just wait for them to come land on me?


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“The only one who could ever reach me was the son of a preacher man The only boy who could ever teach me was the son of a preacher man Yes he was, he was Ooh, yes he was…”

Around seventeen years ago, a young girl barely out of her teens got up early on a Sunday morning and got dressed for church. She could see the steam rising from the street from those rare and quick summer Abilene storms, and it was already hot enough to fry her eggs on the sidewalk so she chose a modest sundress and sandals. She always got to church early because her husband was the music minister. She wandered around the blue carpeted building, dodging the wasps that always made a home inside the sanctuary, like they were searching for redemption for all the kids they had stung. She also dodged that one sweet old lady who insisted on asking questions about how marriage was going *wink wink*.

She went into the bathroom before the service started and while in the stall, a group of women came in. They were all in their seventies and eighties, maybe even older, she didn’t really know because to a barely 20-year-old, 40 seemed ancient. Either way, these were the ladies who knew everything about everyone. And if they didn’t know, they’d ask. And bless your heart if they didn’t approve of your answer. She listened quietly as they talked about how they hoped the piano would be softer this week, and how they understood that we needed to sing that newer music for the “young people”, but how they just knew Jesus REALLY loved the hymns best. Then she heard this bomb.

“Did you see Wes’ wife this morning? No minister worth his salt would let his wife wear open toed shoes to church!”


Dear Wesley,

The twenty year old me went home that afternoon, cried, and promptly went out and bought old lady shoes to cover up my offensive and ungodly toes. The thirty-seven year old me wants to give her a hug and tell her to show up that next week with clown shoes on. We spent two years serving at that church, then three years at another, and monday marked ten years serving at Watermark Community Church.

When I went to Hardin-Simmons University back so many years ago, I decided that I was NOT interested in marrying anyone who might want to be a full-time minister. Or a part-time minister. Maybe not even a Baptist. An unfair opinion, but I thought that would be a world of being alone, being judged, having to perfect a fake smile, moving around frequently whenever the deacons decided they didn’t like you, being poor, and having my life slowly dissolve into a world of homeschooling my 17 children while learning to sew the floor length skirts I would be required to wear. But there was another reason I didn’t want to be a pastor’s wife.

I was terrified that I would disappoint.

I was a big faker. I mean, I had the right clothes and the bible with the flowery cloth cover and the full Point of Grace songbook memorized. But by myself in my car, I listened to Pearl Jam. I didn’t feel patient or kind and wanted nothing to do with being involved in college ministries. I didn’t have a “gentle and quiet spirit” and what’s more, I didn’t want one. It wasn’t that being a christian was boring, but serving in churches certainly seemed to be. It seemed like an odd sort of political career, where you show your best face to get elected, hope for good pay and benefits, enjoy some twisted form of celebrity, hope you don’t screw up too badly to get fired, and likely get fired anyway over something dumb.

It breaks my heart to know there are pastor’s wives reading this right now who are nodding their heads in sad recognition because this is their reality.

So it should say a lot about how cute and charming you are that you convinced me to marry you, knowing that you would be serving in churches. And not everything in being in full-time ministry lived up to those awful expectations, but some of it did. I’m glad we can both laugh at our first fight over you wanting me to use a certain book for the children’s choir and me sweetly telling you what you could do with that book. You gently reminded me that technically, you were “my boss” and I, full of grace and meekness, told you to shove it. It was a long time before we chose to work together again. I remember another fight, one that I still cannot laugh at, where you felt the oppressing weight of people’s whispers and expectations that your wife would serve as a teacher of youth, and I would have rather been eaten alive by sharks than teach teenagers. This ended in cruel whispered words in a church hallway, and a loss of trust for years. So I can admit, my love, that when we moved to Dallas, I halfway hoped you might find a new passion for being an accountant or something.

And then you began an internship at Watermark that turned into a full-time job. And we had babies. And our marriage imploded. And I braced myself for the impeachment and the stares. And it never came.

Ten years later, I am so honored to be not only your wife, but a wife of a man on staff at Watermark. There is nothing magical about Dallas or the building, but Jesus has changed you, me, us. And He’s used so many of the men and women on staff to do that. And I am so proud of the work that you do. You love authentically, not politically. And you teach me so much about Christ, by the way you and your leadership have allowed me to be…me. Pearl Jam, open toed shoes and all. I am not expected to be an appendage of you. My gentle and quiet spirit can also be funny and authoritative. And while I completely understand the seduction of image, I wish I could adequately express the relief that comes with the freedom of letting go of the image.

Ten years ago, I thought that there was a good chance that we would not stay married or I would be forever miserable in a fake happy marriage. Ten years ago, I would have said that I would be happier if you never wanted to work for a church again. And ten years later, we are not in a perfect church or a perfect marriage, but I am so blessed to be called yours and to be a member of this body.

You’re totally worth your salt, babe. Happy 10 years.




Would these have been better, old lady committee? They look sort of Old Testamentish.

Would these have been better, old lady committee? They look sort of Old Testamentish.

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“Take your make up off, Let your hair down, Take a breath, Look into the mirror at yourself, Don’t you like you? Cause I like you…”

“Put your make up on
Get your nails done
Curl your hair
Run the extra mile
Keep it slim so they like you, do they like you?”
 It’s the tiniest slip, a mere 100 feet from Gymboree to Justice, but it’s another galaxy. Kittens to cheerleading. Tiny bows to sparkly boots. The smallest change in cuts, so that the shoulder is exposed a bit more. You pull it down, I pull it up. This is the year of more no than yes. The year that the one piece versus bikini became reality instead of theory. These baby girls who hate being called babies walk their spindly legs down familiar halls, and the bathrooms suddenly have mirrors. When did they get mirrors? Us moms, we don’t ever forget that first time we see you suck your stomach in. We want to warn you, but we also see the freight train that carries braces, pimples, and cramps barreling down the track, and we are powerless to do anything but catch a ride alongside you. Doesn’t it feel like a race? To catch onto the thing that will make you “it”,  you just can’t be the last to catch on! You ask us when you can start shaving your legs, and we beg for more time. Babies, do you know how loved you are? Do you know how we stay awake, memorizing every dip and curve of your face? Do you know about the moments that we catch a glimpse and can’t speak because of your beauty? Can you hear your mother’s voice as it cracks with tears when she talks about you? Can you see the desperation in her eyes when you tell her that you just wish you were pretty, because she just can’t find enough words to express how beautiful you are?
Babies, did you know your Father feels this way about you?
“Get your sexy on
Don’t be shy, girl
Take it off
This is what you want, to belong, so they like you
Do you like you?”
 A thousand voices compete for your attention, and sometimes the most negative one is your own. You might despise us now. Loves, we mamas need grace. It’s probably easy for you to forget that along with hurting with you, we can be hurt by you too. We remember our own adolescent struggles with dress sizes and acne, with that one boy who spoke cruel words, with that embarrassing moment we were sure no one would ever forget, and then we sigh and remember that you have all these same moments captured on Instagram. When you walk into that high school on that first day, your mama is pleading for you, that you might rise above the fray, but we also know that no destination is worth getting to if you don’t have to swim hard for it. So we step back and continue the gut wrenching process of releasing that which we never owned, and give you a sympathetic smile when you cry over dateless dances. Did you know we would still let you stand on our feet to dance? Do you know that at every turn, we are praying that you won’t fall for the scheme of letting others decide your beauty?
Loves, did you know your Father pursues you this way?
“Get your shopping on, at the mall, max your credit cards
You don’t have to choose, buy it all, so they like you
Do they like you?”
Sisters, aren’t you tired? Do you remember a time when you thought that desire to belong and fit in was simply a childish goal and someday you wouldn’t care? And now we hover in doorways at PTA meetings, we sit alone on park benches, we form a line of quiet loneliness while our kids play soccer. We’ve gotten good at the game, claiming ignorance of the game itself. But we go home and slather on our expensive night cream, and we look in the mirror and sigh. Sure, we proudly own our laboring stretch marks and embrace the gray, but that desire, the one to be known, it is just as strong. Sisters, did you know that He put that in you? And yet we protect and manage, putting our best night creamed face forward, just to come home exhausted because its
Beloved Sisters, did you know your Father wants you to rest?
Today is the first day of school. Today, His daughters will venture out into a world that can be incredibly cruel. Today I will pray for myself and for my sisters.

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