Redeeming the Generations

Chad, a dear friend and spiritual son, texted me some photos the other day. One prompted a mixed-emotion smile. When the second photo came through, I immediately began to cry.  The imagery too confronting, too powerful, and too tender.

He had been asked to make a cross for the Resurrection Sunday Celebration at New Wine Church. Chad explained how he had looked at his lumber options. He considered a beautiful piece of seasoned oak or a lovely piece of planed cedar. But the Lord directed him to a more humble offering. Here is the first photo:

This plank of wood is from my parent’s house and my childhood home. It was a shelf in my mother’s pantry that held all manner of kitchen goods. Mom was ever cooking wonderful meals for her family.  And, like every good Depression-surviving woman, she had to have ample supplies in her pantry.  “Just in case,” she would say.

Chad remarked about the shelf, “Under all the multiple layers of paint, dust, grease, and preservatives there was this beautiful slab of wood. It just took a little work to get there.” Selah.

This is sweet. Special, even. A symbol of my mother’s hard work and wisdom. However. Before it was a pantry, this small space was my bedroom. And before that, this small space housed both of my brothers in a narrow bunk.

In one moment, all kinds of memories blitzed my heart and head. Wonderful meals, cramped spaces, poverty as a child.

For reference, this is the room once the shelves were removed and the house was  “all dolled up” to put on the market.

My heart was in a blender already when Chad’s second photo came through.

I still can’t look at this picture without choking up. (Thanks, Chad.) The transformation is stunning. The metaphor is wrenching. It was the Cross that redeemed all that poverty, brokenness, and lack. God took my parent’s best efforts and worst frailties and shaped their offering into something beyond their wildest dreams.

It’s a prayer every parent can relate to. I can relate to.  Oh God, make us aware of our inheritance to our children, good or bad, and may the Cross transform it all.

God breaks very real generational curses, redeems relationships, and restores fortunes lost or squandered. But wait there is so very much more.

Look at where Chad placed the cross. All greater things are grown out of the cross.

Greater Things is literally grown out of God’s relentless love as well as the love of those who have raised us in the faith. It’s our joy and honor now to continue to multiply all that we have been given.

Don’t miss this.

All of us, and I mean ALL of us, are ALWAYS climbing on the root system of someone before us. Someone else sacrificed and persevered and believed to the point of tears.  Jesus himself believed to the point of blood.

The belief that God will bring beauty from our ashes, joy from our mourning, a double portion for our shame, and freedom from captivity is our unending anthem.  In a word, transformation.

One final kiss. On Resurrection Sunday, the families each brought a flower and adorned the cross. Not that we could ever add to God’s glory — but we celebrate the power and beauty of our Life-giving, Chain-breaking, Death-defying King Jesus.

His Blood Speaks a Better Word

I have this beautiful Jasmine plant outside.  You can imagine my delight when the small white blossoms opened up and filled the air with a heavenly scent.

It has been a frequent topic in my God conversations lately. I thanked the Lord for creating such beautiful expressions in nature. I marveled at Springtime and how the earth just cannot keep itself from declaring new life, life from that which seems dead.

I even shook my head at how this insignificant Jasmine plant was quietly and unassumingly taking over the fence line. With stretched-out tendrils and runners, it spreads its little domain, if you will.

Seriously, we have been talking about the parallels between this little plant and the Kingdom of God— it’s fragrant, relentless, and advancing.

But after looking at it multiple times a day for many days, today when I looked, it caught my breath.

I walked over to it to see what this red leaf was, maybe it blew into the fence from last night’s storm. No. It was very much a part of this thriving creation.

In the moment, the Lord whispered, the Blood is always in the middle of the Beauty.


Holy Week is a pathway. From the Lord’s Supper, to the garden, to the trial, to the outrageous brutality, to the cross, to the tomb.  Pause and reflect but don’t stop in any one of these places. Taste the wine, cry the tears, wince at the nails being driven in, feel the breath leave His body, and flinch as rock grinds on rock as they rolled the tomb closed with His body inside.

But don’t stop there.

Resurrection Sunday is the unspeakable joy as the Blood bursts into glorious song.

“He is not here! He has risen just as He said.”

The Blood is always in the middle of the Beauty. Celebrate the Beauty and remember the Blood.

And we have come to Jesus who established a new covenant
with his blood sprinkled upon the mercy seat;
blood that continues to speak from heaven, “forgiveness,”
a better message than Abel’s blood that cries from the earth, “justice.”
Hebrews 12:24 TPT


How much Love is Enough?

I seem to have a hard time loving. Even after all this time, some conflict or some person slams up against a brick wall inside my heart.  On this wall is a big neon sign that flashes “THAT’S IT! I’m done with you.”

To add insult to injury after the said collision, I then somehow conveniently build a case about why I am justified in my unlovingness.  I will even tiptoe into very dangerous territory about whether someone else is “worthy” of love.

Even after all this time, more than 30 years of being loved unconditionally and extravagantly by Jesus. I am still learning how to love.

I got in a tussle the other night and I was so mad. I was spouting off prayers left and right about how I had been offended and betrayed and how much I wanted God to defend me…

Holy Spirit’s answer stung like alcohol on an open wound.

“My blood is enough for you both.”

This is why I am so desperately aware of my need to celebrate the Resurrection every year.  I need the blood of Jesus to wash me clean.  I need the cross to remind me that it was Love that held Him there. He loved me more than my sin. More than your sin. The blood, the water, and the piercing of His side were not to fulfill some morbid code of punishment.

Instead, the cross demonstrates just how much love is enough to save the world.
To save my world and yours.
To save me.
From me.

Likewise, I need the empty tomb to strengthen my weak love muscles. His love in me is stronger than mine alone will ever be.  And just as the song declares, “If You walked out of the grave, I’m walking too.”

I was crucified with Him, therefore, I am raised to a whole new life with Him.  More is always possible with Him.

When Jesus said for us to love our enemies, (which at any moment might be our spouse, our family, our boss, or our neighbor) He wasn’t being cruel. He was telling us that He opened a door to a whole new level of Love that casts out fear. Love that cancels sin. Love that raises the dead. Love that takes down the brick walls inside our hearts.

So I will keep learning and practicing. I will keep going to His love tank instead of my own. He promised He will have His way in me and one day I will love as He does.

Until then, I will fall on His grace as He demolishes every brick wall that still exists in my heart.

Thank you, Jesus.

We are like common clay jars that carry this glorious treasure within,
so that this immeasurable power will be seen as God’s, not ours.
Though we experience every kind of pressure, we’re not crushed.
At times we don’t know what to do, but quitting is not an option.
We are persecuted by others, but God has not forsaken us.
We may be knocked down, but not out.
We continually share in the death of Jesus
in our own bodies so that the resurrection life
of Jesus will be revealed through our humanity.
We consider living to mean that we are constantly being
handed over to death for Jesus’ sake so that the life of Jesus
will be revealed through our humanity.
So, then, death is at work in us but it releases life in you.
2 Corinthians 4



Cold to Hot

God is always leading us forward into freedom. Past the sin, the stuck places, the disappointment, and the heartache of living.


Always forward into hope, into more of Him, into deep change. He does transformative work with this double-edged sword called Spirit and Truth.

With this sword, two things are happening at the same time. On one side, the truth of God sets us free from lesser lovers and worldly appetites. He reveals truth and lies lose their power. We are cut free from bondage.  On the other side, Holy Spirit comforts our spirit as we mourn our weakness and look for the courage to be changed. The Spirit cuts the cords of our complacency and apathy and we receive strength to be truly loved.

But to be clear, it is a deep cut into our current way of thinking. Spirit and Truth do not show up without us being painfully aware that Someone greater is on the scene. We are compelled forward.

It’s a complex thought I know, but so necessary for the days we live in. A friend and I were talking about  Matthew  24: 12 which warns the “love of others will grow cold.”  Look at the CEV version.

“Evil will spread and cause many people to stop loving others.”

Listen. If that doesn’t stop you in your tracks, I don’t know what will. Evil, from the enemy, will increase so much that people will stop acting like they know God.

How can this be? Remember Jesus’s command: Love God, others, and ourselves.  Romans says we OVERCOME evil with good.

We overcome the evil that comes against our own hearts, our families, our tribe, our city, and our nations.  I must press you today. Are you allowing the double-edged sword of spirit and truth to do its work in your life so that we can overcome the evil we all face?

Two verses come to mind that combat growing cold.

“Fan into flame the gift of God” from 2 Timothy 1:6.
“Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.” Hebrews 10: 24

Jesus is calling us to a deeper more vibrant way of life. We are invited to be so alive with His love that it heals us as we go and impact others.  And. It pushes back the evil of our day.

I recall the words of a Jenny Owens song. “I don’t want to be a flame, I want to be a raging fire.”

Push forward. Blaze bright. Overcome darkness.


How Majestic You Are!

Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!

You have set your glory
in the heavens.
Through the praise of children and infants
you have established a stronghold against your enemies,
to silence the foe and the avenger.
When I consider your heavens,
the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
which you have set in place,
what is mankind that you are mindful of them,
human beings that you care for them?
You have made them a little lower than the angels
and crowned them with glory and honor.
You made them rulers over the works of your hands;
you put everything under their feet:
all flocks and herds,
and the animals of the wild,
the birds in the sky,
and the fish in the sea,
all that swim the paths of the seas
Lord, our Lord,

how majestic is your name in all the earth!

Psalm 8

Why Believe?

If you remember, my word for the year is Unleashing Miracles. Audacious, I know. But isn’t He? Audacious, awe-inspiring, surprising, outrageous. That’s our God.

And today as we head into Roar: Freedom in the Kingdom, as we head into another run around the sun, as we head into more living, I encourage you to not lose hope.

This week alone, I have personally experienced the fruition of prayers that were against all odds. I have personally rejoiced with my friends who kept on believing, and who were surprised by the goodness of God. Together we agreed that our faith was strengthened.

He is always working for good. He is always setting people free. He is always healing. He is always comforting the brokenhearted. So I say again, do lose hope.

Our belief in the miraculous God is a superpower that the world needs.

Help My Unbelief

The word stopped me dead in my tracks.  A friend was coaching us about decisions that needed to be made and he remarked, “it was presumptive of me to think God would take care of” the situation the way I had planned. He went on to give us much-needed wisdom and insight. But that word nagged me.


What does presumptive mean?  It describes something that is expected to happen or become true.

I went back to the Lord and vented: “I am only doing what I think You said. Yes, it sounds crazy, but it doesn’t have to make sense to anyone else. And if that makes me presumptive, then FINE! But I would rather be presumptive and believe YOU, than never attempt anything because I couldn’t even get out of the gate.”

Whew. Snort. Okay then.

Once I calmed down, I realized my wise friend was trying to broaden our scope and options. However, years after the conversation, the word still comes up in my mind like a full-blown assault.

It goes like this. I will hear a faint whisper from the Lord about some action to take, or an invitation to some dream He wants me to pursue. As I rally up my faith to hit the first Domino, I hear a sneer from the enemy, “you are so presumptive.”  Translation: You really expect God to come through? You really think He WILL do that for you? This is a stupid idea. It will never happen. You are crazy for thinking you heard God. 

Does this happen to you too? God invites us into more and our own unbelieving thoughts, or the enemy of God, tries to kill the dream before we even take the first step.

Sounds like the garden. Did God really say?

Well. As a matter of fact. YES — GOD DID SAY!

Now, after years of practicing trust and surrender, when I hear that word fire in my mind, it has become a bright flare, like a beacon of evidence.  Ahhh.  It MUST be God if there is this much opposition right off the bat.

I am calling us as believers to rise up in Faith and Boldness.  It’s not God who is weak, but our faith. We must rise up to activate His promises and goodness over our lives and our families and communities.

I want to bless you with one word: Storehouses.  There are storehouses of treasures in heaven. God is waiting for someone earthbound to pull them down. On Earth, as it is in Heaven. I remember Shawn Boltz saying God gave him a vision of a room with body parts with names on them. Creative miracles that God wanted to do on earth through our faith.

Just recently the Lord has been expanding that idea to me that there are storehouses of His goodness that He wants to release on earth and He wants to know who will do the faith journey to be a part of it.

Storehouses of relational healing, financial favor, healing and miracles, generational restoration. I don’t know about you. but I don’t want to miss out on heaven here because I would not believe God to Be God to me.

For the faint of heart (that’s all of us at some point), it’s not about just getting what we think we want. It is our transformation in the process, and being so close with this Beautiful God that we move to what He wants for us.

We bank our whole lives on the belief that God is working for our good. Presumptive. Yes, please.

Jesus said to him, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.”
Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears,
“Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!”
Mark 9:23-25



Under New Management

Chuck and I enjoy eating out. We have our favorite go-to spots and a list of got-to-try places. As we left Corner 16 the other night, we recalled this memory of eating there when the girls were little.  Only then it was a Ruby Tuesday.  We watched that Ruby Tuesday slowly die. Declining food quality, bad service. Every time we went in there you could tell the place was gasping for air. No one seemed to care. So no one was surprised it closed down.

It was, after all, a bad location. Nothing could ever really succeed there. Blah, blah, blah.

As we exited the packed parking lot of Corner 16, with a wait at the door to get in, I told Chuck it was amazing to see how new management with a fresh vision and creativity could turn something around.

Turns out it wasn’t such a bad location, after all.

This picture in the natural captures my spiritual attention. What areas of my life, or your life,  are slowly dying, and all we throw at it is neglect, hopelessness, and resignation?

Do we have dreams or incredible ideas God has given us that at the moment are hard, declining, or frustrating? Sometimes, we would rather make excuses instead of asking for radical help.

I find often instead of going to Him for “new management with a fresh vision and creativity,” I am blaming and quitting. How about you?

Here’s the point. Jesus changes everything. Can you even imagine how the lame man felt when Jesus asked him, “Do you want to be well?” (John 5)

Imagine if I went to the Ruby Tuesday management,  and I said, “Do you want to have a thriving, brand-new concept that will blow your mind? It’s going to cost you more than money. It’s going to cost your very belief system. You will have to rethink, reshape and re-order your whole life. You in?”

The lame man looked at the King Over All Impossibilities and — made excuses. No one to help meWhile I am tryingSomeone else gets ahead

The crucial moment followed. Jesus gave the lame man specific instructions.

Get up.
Pick up your mat.
And Walk.

Or. Stay the same.

The last part Jesus didn’t audibly say. But the choice was crystal clear. Get up in faith and take radical action to go forward, or stay where you are in the same mess and hurt and sadness.

Look at your world and THE world. New Management is on the scene. It can’t help but change. Healing of every human wound and heartache and sin is on the scene.

Radical help and radical healing are ours. What can we do today to get up and walk?




Why Miracles Today

To be frank, I am not sure how the church ever stumbled over the miracle question. How we dropped the training and expectation of miracles is disturbing. Let’s break this down with the old math adage:  Milk comes from cows. Butter comes from milk. Therefore butter comes from cows.

Salvation comes from Jesus. Salvation is a miracle. Therefore miracles come from Jesus.

“Oh, oh !” the unbelieving believers exclaim, “IF you only count salvation then miracles still happen today.”

Not quite. Remember the word “saved” is the Greek word “Sozo” meaning physically healed, emotionally delivered, and spiritually restored.  To know Jesus and to be known by Jesus unlocks the miraculous way of life.

“Freely you have received, now freely give.” Jesus said in Matthew 10:8

Wait. What have I received? What have you?

He gave these instructions first to the disciples and then the 72 and then to us.

“Go to the lost, confused people right here in the neighborhood. Tell them that the kingdom is here. Bring health to the sick. Raise the dead. Touch the untouchables. Kick out the demons. You have been treated generously, so live generously.”  (The MSG)

He was instructing the very people who were the sick, the untouchables, the demon-possessed. In Paul’s words, “and such were some of you.” They had received the miraculous life of Jesus and there was plenty to share. In fact, they grew stronger and bolder and richer the more they gave away.

To know Jesus is to know miracles. It’s not a rare occurrence. It is the living, breathing expectation of heaven invading earth on the daily.

What will you speak and declare? And wait for?

From obstacles removed to bills being paid, to hardened hearts softened, to generational curses broken, to divine strategies, to bones being healed, to demons cast out, to fear and anxiety silenced, to sickness vanquished, all this and more Jesus has given to me and to you. There is no area of our life and this world that the healing power of Jesus is not available to radically transform.

Do you get stuck? Do you wrestle with unbelief? Do you have questions? Then do the work and clear the path for your faith to flow. The whole world is in need of the living water that exists in His followers.

Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
Hebrews 10:23-25



The Power of a Word

Each year we ask the Lord for His word for us for the year. It’s an exercise we have been doing for a long time.  My spiritual father, John Dee, started this beautiful practice and now many of us have this rich history of seeing God reveal more of His heart to us and in us. So, first things first, have you asked the Lord for your word? Second, what do you do with it when you get it?

More than a faddish thing, these words become bricks in our soul’s structure. I find each word builds on top of one another. In fact, if you haven’t recently, go back to the last 2-10 years and locate your word. It’s amazing how one brick, one deposit or revelation, had to come before the other. While you are at it, look at your memories. See how God unpacked your circumstances through the lens of the given yearly word. I can say that 2022 was a bruiser. But through the lens of His word for me, it is totally different.

Next step, share your word! Give testimony about how God revealed Himself to you.  We are all strengthened by the movement of God in each other’s lives.

Last year my word, or phrase, was “Unveiled and Seen.” I look back over my year of death and disruption, letting go and taking on the new, and I am in awe. This year has truly been an unveiling and seeing a whole new way of doing life with God, new comfort in sorrow, and even a new focus in ministry.

Okay so brace yourself. This is vulnerable. My words for 2023: Unleashing miracles.

I mean what even is that? I didn’t want to write it down. BUT. GOD.

What if Unleashing Miracles is what God wants to do give me, show me this year??
I don’t want to miss that.  So here’s my testimony.  This is me putting on my seatbelt. Tag your it. What’s yours?

Let’s do this.