Thursday, November 1, 2018


The clover club was an elite group I belonged to in the third grade.  We did not last very long.  The host of other special groups I’ve belonged to over the past years is a short list.  Being selective of who you rummage through thought with is very important.

On the road to a stronger financial profile my Instagram feed is now a buzz with various financial gurus.  One set called the “Finance Twins” who use cute little “bitmojis" to get their point across.  I am not direct messaging to ask them who their target audience is but I can guess.  In a recent meme they depicted a set of “twins”, one “Rich” and the other “Wealthy” with their net worth listed underneath each picture.  The “Rich”’s net worth was 15K and the “Wealthy”, 1.2M.  The “Rich” bitmoji is dressed in hundreds of dollars worth of clothing and a bag worth five thousand dollars.  Woah, first of all, I thought those bags were a joke and personally cannot comprehend a $5,000 bag unless it turns into some sort of transportation device or blender.  I could justify a $5,000 bag that turns into a blender.  That’s highly convenient merchandising.  The “Wealthy” bitmoji is dressed in around two hundred dollars worth of clothing and is not carrying a bag - this hypothetical situation is intended to depict something which I am borrowing for a…you guessed it, metaphor.  It is not really a metaphor.  It is more a look at net worth.

My Spiritual wealth far surpasses any sort of physical wealth I might accrue while on this Earth.  My Spiritual wealth is and forever will be in the person of Christ.  Physically, monetarily, familialy, all is still “like a vapor that appears for a little while then vanishes” James 4:14b.  Eternal wealth, intrinsic wealth which springs from the well of Christ’s Spirit is the “inheritance” first found on this Earth.  Ephesians 1:14 states that "the Holy Spirit is the downpayment for our inheritance”.  We walk around with a wealth to a degree not replicable in this Creation.  This is where the follower of Christ can become very careless.

We throw around the “first world” awareness in the United States rather commonly, even in not that affluent areas - there is a cognizance of being in a first world nation.  While an individual might be poverty stricken the apparent opportunity to not be poverty stricken still exists.  Our poverty is still well off in relation to parts of the developing world wherein we have access to resources and luxuries not often afforded in other places, like running water and consistent electricity.  I visited the Dollar Tree for the first time in a while.  I had not lived next to one convenient enough to walk to and had done my shopping online or through other merchants. This Dollar Tree is full of nearly everything one could need in a pinch including dish-ware and frozen food. I walked out shook and angry.  The United States associates a large amount of stigma with poverty and yet, the people who routinely shop at the Dollar Tree do have some form of a quality of life at least more than the stigma possibly makes it out to be.  I am using the conditional intentionally. Drawing broad strokes across poverty is not fair to anyone.  

From the outside it could look as though the wealth of a follower of Christ is low.  This “turn the other cheek”, “servant leadership”, and “if someone asks for your cloak give him your coat too” sort of outlook can appear insane to someone who does not have a deepening relationship with Christ.  However, the depths from which one is able to turn the other cheek, the foresight in servant leadership, and the freedom in giving someone your cloak and coat produces a balanced recognition of ultimate treasure.  All that can be amassed moves from the partial to the whole, it is not a coat as one piece of clothing - it is all clothing woven from all fibers brought from all fields which God made.  You do not see one role which needs to be filled and therein some apparent status or recognition.  Instead from the vantage point you rightly see men and women made in the image of God and the power to leverage, nourish, and strengthen their God given gifts.  Turning the other cheek no longer is about taking a blow but it is allowing the other person to exhaust themselves to the point where truth is no longer hidden and can be properly addressed.  

The wealth then of life in Christ far surpasses what a side commentary might indicate.  Even this commentary means nothing if I as the author walk away neglecting the true stewardship and ownership of Christ's wealth.  We are “called heirs of God and joint-heirs of Christ” in Romans 8.  Yet the coloquiel poverty mindset exists within the Christian faith.  While we might be rich beyond imagine spiritually it is still the forefront of obligation to the material for which we make apology.  The poverty mindset is something which must be untaught and retrained into being one of thriving and growth.  Even someone who escaped poverty decades before can still find themselves making decisions based on a false concept of limited means.  It takes a period of time to retrain the gut response to issues of emergency or discernment in moments of abundance.  As Christians who are walking around with this abundant Spiritual wealth, it is as if we were walking around with a high value currency and can be possibly ignorant to it.  We walk around with a literal abundance of love coming from God which surpasses every assumption of the purpose of love, and we focus instead on what is lacking.  So I ask, If this wealth is the very core of me, do I carry myself as wealthy as I truly am?  If I did what would that mean for my time and how I steward my thoughts and words?  If all that is the core of me is the King of all Kings, how could I live a life less than that of royalty?  If all of my resources were innumerable and not dependent upon any of my own account, what exactly would I do?

Sadly, this becomes easily and mind you, obviously, bastardized through the “prosperity gospel”.  The question does not change - “If all that is the core of me is the King of all Kings, how could I live a life less than that of royalty?”, but the intent changes in the Prosperity Gospel.  No longer is it at it’s core a question of posture towards worship and reverence to God, but one which gives a justification for amassing lesser riches.  C.S. Lewis put it plainly when he wrote “we are far too easily pleased”.  The marshmallow test is a wonderful example of this easy pleasure.  Children can reveal a great deal about their inner and future selves by either passing or failing the marshmallow test.  If you are not familiar, in this test a marshmallow is placed on a table in front of a child, and the individual conducting the experiment proceeds with the following instruction, “While I leave the room, you can either eat the marshmallow or wait and I will give you a second marshmallow when I return.”  Depending on the child’s ability to delay gratification, the child will either eat the marshmallow or wait and have two marshmallows.  For Christians it is less about forgoing the lesser option of one marshmallow and waiting for a second marshmallow and more about God asking us to turn the single marshmallow over to find a four course meal He made which was hidden - or you could, you know, ignore His ability to deepen everything and just eat a marshmallow.  God constantly says, forget worrying about whether or not you are going to eat the marshmallow and feast on what I am giving you underneath.

The clover club did not last very long though we were an elite group of third graders.  Truthfully it was just myself and two of my friends.  Together though we knew we had something important going on - and we felt like we were important.  This is human psych 101, I am aware, but it serves to prove a point.  Even children understand the importance of creating groups of individuals who share a commonality.  For Christians this commonality is the inheritance and blessing of the Holy Spirit, and the wealth of relationship to one another through Him.  For the world to be able to come together regardless of socio-economic status, culture, climate heritage, and the like and be able to share a never ending flow of relationship in Christ- ladies and gentlemen, this is no small deal.  The depth of which the Kingdom of God can be constructed here on this Earth through the simple recognition of a shared relationship with Christ means a wealth and harmony which has no end.  I return back to the original question.  Do I carry myself as wealthy as I truly am?  Do I treat others in the Kingdom of God as if they were the heirs of the King of Kings?  Do I plan restoration of the world at the scale truly that fitting of a daughter of the King of the Universe?  I would wager not.  In fact I know I am not and do not.  In this I must personally sit and see where I am giving myself away / settling for that which I know could be richer in thought and action.  I know the best way to this is to continue to deepen my relationship with Christ because if you spend time with the King He is bound to teach you how to be His royalty.  Greater than this the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and the acceptance of Christ in me indeed means, regardless of where I am at in how I feel regarding my royalty in Christ - I am wealthy beyond what I could dream.

Saturday, October 27, 2018

Albatrossities: The Junk and Lines We Sink In

The Albatross.  I thought this animal was a myth.  Never having been to the South Pacific nor the Southern Oceans I had not seen this bird in action.  The Albatross is majestic, graceful, and everything I would aspire to be.  For the longest time, I identified with the Red Tailed Hawk and the Harpy Eagle.  Nature itself is pure and the characteristics of animals are not wavering.  May not be my spirit animal but I appreciate the exactness of these creatures.

Scripture speaks to being raised up on Eagle’s wings, specifically Isaiah 40:31,  "But those who trust in the Lord will renew their strength; they will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not faint.”  The Albatross is a different reminder of what it looks like to trust the Lord.  Prepare for a relative metaphor to our current present state in modern society.  I understand that was a lot of words strung together but, I do mean, our current present state - that of the Church/Bride of Christ and those who are indeed searching for Truth and trusting the Lord in modern society, of which we are familiar if you are a Global Citizen.

The Albatross soars with an 11-foot wingspan covering long distances without technically flying but a mere percentage of travel.  It takes flight primarily for food and travels thousands of miles round trip to bring back findings for their chicks.  In the cursory research I did, the birds mate for life, are adorable, and are presently faced with two challenges.  The first challenge which we can relate to is, eating junk.  The trash issue has caused the deaths of albatrosses because they are incapable of distinguishing the items in the ocean from actual food.  Nobody has taught the bird how to avoid eating garbage.  The notion itself is preposterous, how would anyone do that, to begin with, and then how would you even start?  Behavioral therapy for the albatross coming to a liberal arts school near you!  The fact that we cannot ask that question really is due to the problem holistically.  We wade in our own garbage and ignore the consequence to the constant feeding mouths around us.  In the world of social engagement, another man’s trash is not often someone’s treasure.  Mangled truth is toxic.  

Writers have a known responsibility to write down the truth.  Perhaps the truth they are communicating is a debatable topic, but it is at the end the author's word.  Artists, educators, and ideally public officials are responsible in the same thread to uphold writing and speaking the truth.  We ourselves must be selective in what we intake and what we throw around.  The issue for the Albatross (and ourselves) should not be, how do we teach it to distinguish junk but, how do we stop polluting our ecosystems? Scripture gives continual instruction as to how the Lord wants us to steward His world.  Haste and waste both are both looked at through Scripture as foolishness, and there are prescriptive words as to how to live a life modeled around the One who created all life.  Distinguishing truth from garbage becomes increasingly easier the more centered you are on the ultimate Truth and therein you yourself become more of a peacemaker and truth bringer renewing ecosystems.  Now maintaining that life is a constant uphill battle unless you are indeed a new creation in Christ.  The substance of our lives is always lived out in the fullness of Christ. 

It is not enough to distinguish truth from garbage, but we must look deeper below the surface and understand the origin of ideas.  We cannot simply recognize the truth; we must also live out the truth.  The second issue is one less of garbage and more of what we are possibly succumbed to if we are not watchful of connections.  Albatross face an issue of being hooked and pulled under the water by long line fisherman.  There have been pushes to avoid this albatrossity and I am hoping the fisherman are implementing the available tools.  Albatross see the sea meals pulled across the surface of the water, dive to the fast moving and easy access meal, and then are hooked on to the fisherman’s line pulled under water where they drown.  Welcome to our hyper connected society where one idea is embedded into the lines of other ideas and before you know it you are hook line and sinker in something you had never hoped or imagined.  

Take in point the dual party system, a flagrant lie if you ask me, but that is up for too much debate to actually dig into right here.  If you catch on to the fast moving social justice warrior movements without keen awareness on every topic and what the underlying motive or truth is, you 1) do not have time to backpedal and research because you are now caught and connected and pulled along 2) are hooked on to something you are not even aware of and 3) you are eventually pulled under the water and drowned by your own ignorance, complaceny, or general inability to free yourself without dying.  In this case with SJW, drowning the part of you that would not agree with say, the disestablishment of open forum and discussion vs what you might agree with instead - the upholding of civil discourse.  This extends to the workforce too, a high paying job with an easy in which has a hook of an unrealistic mindset on the workload and once you’re hooked, you’re hooked: 1) do not have time to back pedal, 2) hooked on to a lifestyle you never planned or prepared for and 3) you are eventually pulled under water and drowned by your own ignorance, complacency, or general inability to free yourself without dying.  Work is good and loving doing good work is also good but the hook of upholding the faux boundary lines while enabling inefficiency and the poor work ethic of others is not. This extends to relationships, and dance parties.  

I’ll leave it here - I absolutely love both the original Marvin Gaye “Got to Give it Up" and even the knock off riff made popular by “Blurred Lines”.  I do not like however, any of the lyrics to “Blurred Lines”.  While I am glad the artist was able to capture the aspect of reality found in the lyrics, I do not want any part of it and have no interest in promoting it.  This was me on the dance floor:  

*dancing* yes, this is that sweet lick - *still dancing* wait, it’s a different song - *dancing a lil different* ooo, I love what they’ve done - *dancing awkwardly* oh wait, wait what is he saying - *dancing looking for an exit on the dance floor*  this, is disgusting - *watching other people still dancing*  i’ll, sit and wait.  

The beat is still dope but I can’t dance to those words.  In a life choice where there other people involved who are not sweaty dance floor people - the graceful exiting from the floor often cannot happen without someone often shouting “Dance!” with more assumed authority.  What does happen however, is a truth we are more frequented with than we may realize - sitting out because there is no other song being played.  This is a responsibility of the one who holds Truth- make melody, sing a new song, and invite others to the dance.   

Albatrossities, the junk and lines we sink in are at the most quite possibly the easiest to avoid.  Being fattened and entangled is depending largely in part on what we are soaring.  The Albatross takes flight and soars on wind currents.  The original impartation of the Holy Spirit in Scripture is recorded that "suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind", and in the creation of the world it is recorded that the “Spirit of God was hovering over the waters”.  This same Holy Spirit Christ refers to as “The Spirit of Truth” in John 16:13

When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth. For he will not speak on his own, but he will speak whatever he hears. He will also declare to you what is to come.

The only way to be guided into all truth is if you are not actively resisting the guidance.  You must soar on the guidance of the Holy Spirit and not resist when the Holy Spirit guides you in a different direction.  Be an Albatross not an albatrossity.

Monday, October 22, 2018

The Girl I Will Never Be

Truthfully there is no bigger disdain than to hear from a parent that you are not the child they wanted.  This statement is not to be confused with a parent saying they never wanted children, as that would indicate a more personal and responsible utterance.  This is, rather, the woeful indignation of not being something which you could never be by very existence.  Nobody told me I needed to be something else before I was expected to pay for being that wrong me and with zero way for me to be that someone else desired.  Ah, the plight of just being.  I can catch parts of me sometimes searching to replicate a fix for that - to find out who I need to be in a relationship - to be that person in order to keep/maintain that relationship.  Praise be to God I no longer suffer from that vortex of stability/instability.  Any trace of that it is more like distance waves of a past remembrance of feeling.  I know who I am now and am blessed that my very existence is plunged deeply into the vine of Christ.  I am far more stable than I could ever imagine to be and am at the very core healthy.  I am healing.  What is healing? 

If we look at a bandaged skinned knee the healing which takes place initially is that of preventative.  Your body immediately sends a concerted effort of red and white blood cells to ward off any pathogens.  With modern medicine, we give our bodies a break, by aiding in anti-inflammation so our bodies can quicken to the secondary reparative healing process.  My soul is in, and all of our souls are in, a constant reparative healing state - and the reparative healing state gives way to the eventual thriving state…which is coincidentally where this healing knee metaphor dies.  We would not want a continued growth once a skinned knee is completely repaired.  That’s called cancer.  What is alive, however, is not a metaphor, but a truth about our greater healing in Christ.  

Our souls and lives are damaged constantly when we cling to disobedience and sin.  We do damage to ourselves and others by electing ourselves as the authority and live out our own desires without the relationship with the One who created us.  This fact should not be misconstrued with the words my mother told me.  What she told me was vile and the Lord protected me from the truth of her disgust, that I would not be “Lydia, who did ballet…or the daughter who cleaned well enough for a man to marry”.  At that moment the Lord provided the prayer to say “God forbid” to her and to walk away knowing that even though that was my reality at the time it would not be so forever and that I was indeed a different child than who my Mom wanted me to be.  I was a child of God no matter how vile I felt I was supposed to feel to be.

God in His richness and mercy did not create us flawed.  No, He created us in His very image and that which resisted God - or what is the void of God, the absence and rejecting of all that IS God - which would then (theoretically as I am not a theologian) be as vast and as vile as the inverse of the omniscience, omnipotence, and all Holy God.  More dead than dead.  God is and that which rejects God is evil, it is cut off and dead, winding and never-ending, and exists only as that which refuses to hold God as God.  It is the cold as God is the heat.  It is the dark as God is the light.  Darkness only exists because there is no light.  It has only to do with the acceptance or rejection of light.  God created us in His image.  When we rejected God by attempting to be God ourselves, we then became the very child He did not make us be and no, He did not reject us - He brought us a way to become again His child in the obedience and fulfillment of His Son.  He then imparted to us the very thing which we did not know we could be, and in doing so provided us with a way to be who He originally designed us to be.  We are His Sons and Daughters through adoption, we are His children, and the Bride of His beloved Son.  He is in us and we in Him.  Lydia will be the girl I will never be, but Gabrielle is more than fine as God’s daughter.

Friday, January 22, 2016

Homie Don't Play That Rushrush

Nothing indecisive.  Nothing subjective.

Struggling introspectives are the worst.  End self-loath :)

There is this pull towards a relationship of the will of the Lord and actual effective action steps.  But what if I get going too fast, God?  And lose sight of You?

Important questions to ask, because, if I believe what I believe - and I do - then my reality is formed on the basis that God orders my steps.  Great!  That is great, and I have story after story to show you why our God is deserving of Praise.  "Order my steps?"  It's like i'm on a freaking conveyer walkway at an airport.  Woooooooooo

SO how does one walk on that walkway and still struggle with doubts of whether or not it's God's will?  Can we be so intentional with our walk we lose sight of the freedom?  I'd VENTURE a yes

Highlighting the necessity for my steps to be according to God's will sure, comes from a pure place, but a misguided (all the puns guys) understanding of His sovereignty.  Asking God for His will and then not doing anything is a preposterous way to approach living.  Moses came up on a well in the desert that was bitter, but it was the faith in God to throw in the stick down that made that water drinkable.

You see, with the intentionality of living a life to give praise to our God - to bring others into relationship with God, anything and everything can and will be used for His glory no matter the pedian.  (a made up word)

The pause, the moment of overflowing joy happens when we wait on God to use those steps according to His perfect purpose.  When we wait on the Lord to bring into completion all the moving parts of this brilliant, all connected world we live and breath in.

Wait's in Him we live and move and have our being.  Mother flippin autopilot - any gate, any plane - sing Praise!

Monday, July 21, 2014

What a fantastical journey


It may be, internally the best moment of my life, eternally speaking free from strife and let me tell you breathing feels good.  Entering into college my second year we learned a lot about our breathing, our breathe, our life force and I learned that I did not breathe much.

Holding my breathe

Always holding my breathe

With a resting pulse rate of 42, my body had been conditioned to always being ready for a response

And here we are, free again but this time I'm returning to a peace, a freedom I attained when I was a young child- something so simple and elegant that regardless of circumstances my joy is filled.

How much more living can be done from a place of borderline arrogance, an arrogance of living life to the fullest because it has been given to you - blessed to you - graced to you - and in mercy you're undeserving but still able to muster up a thank you, to muster up a Praise God or a glory hallelujah, or at least today was a my lucky day.

Borderline arrogance is a luxury quick to slip to contentment when not challenged with the ever giving truth a promise brings - this is not the end, our lives here are as fleeting as the wind, and our ability to leave any bit of a mark on the world is something to be held in hands that are clean.  I can't for the life of me, all potential puns intended, express into words what it feels like to be running for so long and to finally, for once, sit still.  To be still and to know God is God - to actually in my heart and soul beat simply together out of love for Creator and in care for all He creates.

Kind of makes me want to punch myself.  Bloody it up a bit to make me feel better about the fact that I don't deserve this much elegance or beauty.  If that's not a sheer shock of selfish humanity i'm not sure what is.

But no, lavished grace and an unashamed face and still all I can muster up is a thank you, is a "God you are magnificent beyond my words, here take my heart, here take my work, here please take all of me"

Until there is nothing left, except for a girl in a slip dress sitting in her bedroom at 5 min until tomorrow unable to do anything but be.  I can't sleep and for good cause, I guess .  Some cause I guess

Did you know my sweetest heart is calm?  Under layers and layers of living, under wraps of jokes and thoughts and musings, my sweetest heart is calm and I know this because it's pouring water, out of my tear ducts.

Sweet peace, beautiful evening...hola manana

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Pray for Those Who Persecute You

Matthew 5:44-45, 48
     "But I say to you, love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you in order that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.... Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect."

A challenging verse even for the staunchiest of Christians and often less associated with those who consider themselves anything close to the word "staunch".  The text begs for us to take a higher calling and let circumstances not get in the way of the Lord's purpose in each life created here on this planet.

Over the past couple of weeks i've heard the call to pray for our enemies followed with, "So you will start to feel better about the person" or "your heart will change toward that individual", rarely does the phrase explain what those feelings are or what that change looks like.  What concerns my heart is this phrase will be taken out of context, that people will begin to pray for those who are persecuting them - simply so they can feel better about being around the individual.

This is not the purpose of the prayer nor is it anywhere in the calling of the verse.  We do not pray for our enemies so we can walk around this Earth feeling ok/indifferent about the atrocities and malevolence (not the movie) of others.  While the byproduct of a life fully lived in Christ does equip us with a sort of ready-at-hands detachment from a great deal of reality, we are called to pray for our enemies because we are called to love our enemies.

Under the pain and pressure of the world - under the circumstances and chaos of the day every man is born fragile and every heart longs to be reunited with the Lord.  That is our prayer, not so we can feel better, but so they can feel better.  Not so our tempers will stay calm, so that the destruction our enemies put forth will not utterly destroy their relationships with around them.  Not so we can "fix" them.  We are called to love them regardless of how we are feeling in the moment and whatever the superior fleeting circumstantial outcome might be.

The sun ALSO rises.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

And he waddled away!

Kids teach me the most about our relationship with God. In fact there are so many things that have happened in my life- pieces coming together at the last minute or memories of prayers from years ago coming together in unscrupulous manners.  I have seen God move in magnificent fashions and consider myself beyond blessed because in this outpouring of awesome the only thing I've really done is wait..and watch. 

Last year I have up orchestrating my relationships for lent. An entrepreneur and producer creator at heart it is easy for me to say that that that and not that but enough about me - the Lenten period was to assess my ability to focus on my instrument. On who God wants me to sound like so I can more readily play well with others. It wasn't until December that I actually felt I had my own voice or at the very least was able to respond to God's without cross checking with the rest of the symphony for guidance. 

This year I'm giving up procrastination.  So for the 20 minute train ride I shall jot on my iPhone:

We run so much faster when our palms are open to The Lord and our burdens are given to him. 

I saw this in practice today on the way to school when the child in my care saw his friend up ahead,"I want to catch up to him, here hold my backpack Ms Gabbie" "Lift your backpack up so you can-?" "Run!"

And so I held the handle on his backup just enough so he could run without the extra weight on his 4 year old frame.

Pretty great right? Thanks, God, for the delightful physical example of what you have been trying to communicate to me. 


He asked me to set the backpack down again. We had gotten pretty close and this smart child did not want the other kid to see me carrying his burden-I mean-back pack. So I set it down, which weighed him down, which kept him from actually catching up to him. 


"Ms Gabbie will you please carry my backpack again?" "Yes dear child"


"Ok I want to carry it by myself"

And then I started to observe - truthfully if we ran up and made it to his friend would  his friend even notice I was carrying his backpack?  No way!

And when we finally did make it to his friend he blew right past him and laughed and his friend let out a surprise - lil dude did not want to "catch up" to his friend he wanted to beat him.  He wanted to win. He wanted to be successful.

Now I am in no way villianizing my early am pal.  He is 4.  And I can't seem to even spell vilifying... :)

How often do we hold onto our burdens so we can "look good" and only ask God so we can "win"?  

Hold me to this. If I come to you with a care and ask you to pray let's aim our hearts to give up the burden to God so we can build better relationships with each other.  So we can run freely and love immensely. Not so we can catch up 

...and then waddle away