Sometimes we can’t fully comprehend a moment until it is over.

It’s the summer of 2013 and I’m sitting cross-legged on a blown-up and slowly deflating mattress, somewhere in the hills of North Carolina.

I’ve made excuses and found the time to go into the back bedroom so I can spend five minutes free writing with my people, the Five Minute Friday crew, and to obsessively refresh the (in)courage page.

I’m looking for my words – for the first real time – splashed across the page.

I am equal parts elated and sick to my stomach.

Half of me wants to cry because I’m nervous and just want to pull it down before anyone can see – and half of me wants to cry because I’m so full of hope, thinking maybe it will reach one person. Just one.

And I’m not good at math or anything, but this totals up to about 100% of me feeling emotional and I’m a little wobbly inside because I’m on the heels of a dream coming true. I know it, but I don’t fully know it yet.


Sometimes God gives you a preview, a before-taste, and we gobble it up just like we eat all the popcorn before the theater lights dim and the movie plays.

We have no idea what will happen before the credits roll.

The movie will unfold, one plot line at a time, one character twist and curveball moment after another.

It’s the story of your life, in a Haitian village or on a blown-up mattress in North Carolina or at the kitchen sink in Washington.

It’s all the little moments adding up into the bigger moments and they all matter just the same.

The clock ticks and the fingers twitch and the tears fall when my grandma emails the entire family the link to the post.

Because this place used to be private. I didn’t mention it to anyone and once upon a time it felt safe and the next I was free-falling.

The clock kept ticking and the tears kept leaking onto the too-wet pillow, but the next morning the phone kept buzzing and the words kept coming and I knew it for the first time in my life:

God had a message and He was using me to tell it.

If we’re going to overcome by the word of our testimonies {Revelation 12:11} then that means we have to actually share them.

Out loud.

To real people.

And friend, you can type to a computer screen and reach hundreds, maybe thousands, but there are people you pass every day that need to know the Hope that keeps you grounded, the anchor for your soul.


They need to hear how you’re complete in Christ and that even in the chaos and the unknowns He is faithful.

You’ve got to share when you’re scared so they can see that He is Sovereign.

You’ve got to be vulnerable and honest so they can know He is the One signing His name to the story.

The clock is not going to stop ticking.

The popcorn will run out and the credits will play and even then we keep telling the story, don’t we?

I had been blogging almost four years before I claimed the word writer. I was terrified to attach it to my being because “I know writers and I am not one.”

And maybe you too? Maybe you feel like you don’t measure up and you’ve held up the stick and determined you couldn’t fit the bill or fit the mold or fit whatever-it-even-is.

But I claimed it. Because I had been making it about me when really it’s only about Him.

I realized that maybe He made me to be a writer and I had been refusing a gift.

Maybe He has fashioned you to be something and it’s time you wear what He’s given.

On a May night I wrote these words and a year later I read them in awe – because He so clearly wrote them then and so clearly has a message in them still today.

Sometimes community breaks apart and breaks our heart in the process. The Story of His Faithfulness in my life began the day I was born, but I feel like I was stuck in Chapter One until community fell apart and He picked me up. The scattered pieces of dreams and heartache fell into all spaces of my life, but slowly He glued them back together. I bear the scars of broken community, but they tell the story of healing.

There was a plot twist coming that I knew nothing about, a curve in the road and a chapter of the story I had long hoped for and spent four years of my life praying for, but the popcorn had run out and the hope was dwindling fast.

I wrote it in May, how community had broken my heart wide open and God pieced it back together. I saw it touch hundreds in June, how sharing my story resonated with others because there’s power in every story and when we hold back we deny God the glory.

And then October came and the community that broke me became one of the biggest blessings in my life.

I saw it with my own eyes, how God can do the impossible.

The story of broken community is now a song sung to a very different tune.

I’m still learning the notes and the story is unfolding, but I trust the One Who holds the pen.

I trust Him enough to jump into the free-fall and step onto a boat.

Yeah.. that. When you’ve spent four hours together in the last four years – but you pack a suitcase and wave goodbye to social media and cell service and sign up for seven days of real, intentional conversation and new memories to be made.

writingyourmessageWe’re traveling together and there may be waves that rock and the boat may sway, just like the blown-up mattress depleted and the clock kept ticking, but he keeps writing and so I’ll keep sharing.

We won’t come back the same. It isn’t possible.

Because God has already done the impossible. 

He’s already written the miracle and now I’m living it.

Wherever you find yourself reading these words, this is what you’ve got to know:

There is faith, hope, and love – but the greatest of these is love. Have faith, hold onto hope, and let Love be your guide.

Claim what He has given you and then use it for His glory. Open your mouth and dare to tell the story.

It isn’t always pretty and it’s bound to get messy again down the road but in the middle of your mess He is writing your message.

Jump into the free-fall. Step onto the boat.

Don’t wait for the credits to play.


I am joining with Jennifer Dukes Lee for #TellHisStory, Holley Gerth for Coffee For Your Heart, and Holly Barrett for Testimony Tuesday. May you be encouraged to jump, encouraged to tell, and encouraged that nothing is too big or too hard or too impossible for Him.


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