Drinking from the Life-Giving Water

Sitting on a bus, on our way to a regional drama contest, my friends would not let me speak. That morning I woke up with hardly any voice and in mere minutes we would be heading to Bismarck and the regional one act play contest. Looking back, I still laugh at the ways my friends found themselves helping me to preserve my voice. Our voices help us to stand up for what is right, but what does one do when one feels like they have lost their ability to speak or that the well has run dry?

Earlier this summer, after an unexpected change at my last job, I found myself searching and seeking to find the words; to find my voice in regards to how I was feeling. It was a time when I desperately needed to speak and share my own thoughts and feelings yet it was a time when I found myself with faith laryngitis. It was a time when every time I came to the writing well, it was found bone dry. And then I found myself on the top of a mountain; Estes Cone in the heart of the Colorado Rocky Mountains.

On that mountain, something magical; no, something incredibly holy happened. My friend Scott pointed out that there was a chapel laid right before our very eyes. There was water–a Baptismal font. There was a rock pile; a holy alter. There was half of a cross which Scott quickly made into a whole cross; a makeshift cross now set on the mountain. Scott went ahead and waited for me as I took some time to pray. I began to listen to one of my new favorite albums Ellie Holcomb’s Red Sea Road. As the words poured into my ears, the tears quickly began to trickle down my face. It was as if all of a sudden the well waters opened up and would no longer stop flowing freely. I was being given holy life-giving water right there on the top of that mountain.

I didn’t realize it at the time, but I was being transformed. That night, I penned a poem about being on the mountain. And for the days following, the words wouldn’t stop flowing. I finally had my voice back…and it was as if I didn’t ever want to lose my voice again.

In the days, weeks, and months following that holy moment, I have found myself pouring out words. I have found myself seeking to tell my story. I have found myself once again returning to those things; writing, speaking, and praying that once gave me life and are once again giving me life!

The last several nights, I have found myself on Facebook live streaming prayers; praying for the people of Texas, praying for the Savanna Greywind family, and simply praying for whatever is needed. I have found my voice again and I don’t want to lose it. I don’t want to let it go. I want to continue to drink from the life-giving water that only Christ can give. The life-giving water that quenches like none other.

Come to the well, my friends, and drink from that very same life-giving water!

Today, you will find me linking with these lovely ladies: Kelly and the RaRa linkup, Jennifer and Tell His Story, and Kristin and Porch Stories.



Sunday Blessings 185

(1) A sweet house warming plant from the Johnsons

(2) Supper with KD and her family

(3) Thankful that the car accident wasn’t worse than it was.

(4) New LLR!!! Thanks Kim and Julia!! And Natalie!!

(5) A visit from LG and EG and homemade cookies

(6) Exploring my new city

(7) A new tea kettle and fun new tea

(8) Command Strips

(9) That my friends in Texas are staying safe.

(10) Texting with Aunt N and A

(11) Finally getting mail in my mailbox

(12) Neighbors who come over and help find the fuse box when you trip the breaker for the first time in your new house.

(13) Tackling Mt Laundry and breaking in my new washing machine.

(14) An invitation to the community meal; Banquet West

(15) Supper at Banquet West

In addition, we must continue to pray for Texas especially the Houston area. May calm hearts and minds prevail so all make wise decisions.

The Holy Spirit

I am linking up for Five Minute Friday. The FMF is hosted by Kate Motaung on her blog Heading Home. Today’s prompt is “Guide.” This community is such a gift to me. I love what Anita said last night at our FMF Twitter, “Your social media friends go with you wherever you go.” We’d love to have you join us on Thursday nights for our Twitter party.

Like the prairie winds
She blows where she will
Tossing to and fro

The wise Holy Spirit
Who guides where she will
Knowing exactly
Where God needs you to be.

The Holy Spirit,
The dove of love
Who flows forth
Between the Father and the Son
Guiding, leading, following
When is needed

Our guide,
The way, the truth, and the life
The alpha and the omega
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit

The almighty three in one
Who guides us all
As we seek
To do justice, love kindness and walk humbly
With our God.

And because I love Rend Collective Experiment, I have to share their new song and video which just released the other day. 

Sunday Blessings 184

(1) A new call! Thanks be to God!!

(2) A sweet FB post from my sissy

(3) Boxes from the food pantry. Thanks GR and LR!

(4) Celebration coffee with SH and KG

(5) Chatting with many of my faves to share my good news.

(6) Celebration coffee with MH

(7) Snapchatting with KL

(8) The fantastic people of FLC–Williston

(9) The hospitality of Upper Missouri Ministries.

(10) LCM board meeting and the excitement they all showed for me and this new call.

(11) A hug from JW

(12) Coffee with DJ and LZ

(13) Running into LH at Panera

(14) One last haircut from TS

(15) The Pinterest vinegar trick for cleaning out a microwave. It works every single time!!

(16) A great parking lot convo with JL

(17) A night out with KG, SH, CT and ST.

(18) A sweet new journal from SH

(19) Supper with KG and her kids

(20) A great chat with DF and JF and their boys while running into them at Target.

(21) A great lunch with D.C.

(22) Finishing packing!

(23) Joy and laughter!!!

(24) The return of Project Runway and The Great Food Truck Race.

(25) All of you!!!

To Speak or Not To Speak

I am linking up for Five Minute Friday. The FMF is hosted by Kate Motaung on her blog Heading Home. Today’s prompt is “Speak.” This community is such a gift to me. Today I even got to meet a blog friend in the flesh. What a blessing! We’d love to have you join us on Thursday nights for our Twitter party.

My social media feeds have been filled with people on all sides. My heart is weary at the evil out there. My heart is weary at white supremacy and racism. Last night my friend Jason asked our friends of color what they needed from us (their white friends) as part of our weekly chat #SlateSpeak. This was a time when we, the white people gathered, needed to be quiet and listen to their answers–to understand where they are coming from. It was a time when I needed to listen and not speak.

Yet there are also times when to not speak says more than anything. I’m reminded of a quote by Dietrich Bonhoeffer “Silence in the face of evil is itself evil: God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.” I’m sorry, but in the face of evil, I must speak. Love must ultimately win! Speaking shows that I won’t  let this broken world become even more broken by evil acts.

In all reality, Jesus was all about speaking up and out. Jesus was always choosing sides–most especially the downtrodden and outcast. Jesus spoke out for the woman caught in adultery. Jesus spoke out throughout his time on the earth. Jesus calls us to know when to speak and when not to speak. And when we speak, Jesus calls us to speak life to one another. For in doing so, perhaps the world will become a much better place!

Sunday Blessings 182 & 183

(1) My sissy finding me some boxes.

(2) A text from D.C.

(3) Tackling Mt Laundry

(4) A sweet much needed summer rain

(5) Running into JA

(6) Lunch with SH

(7) Moderating #slatespeak

(8) Selling some items and decluttering.

(9) Making some progress on packing.

(10) Soaking rain

(11) Texting with Aunt N

(12) Yummy peaches

(13) Texting with one of my faves; MW

(14) Vacation with my sister

(15) Meeting another online friend in the flesh. It was fantastic ST!

(16) Seeing a childhood friend and her family.

(17) Running into JL at Ground Round

(18) Lyft drivers who get you around safely.

(19) KG picking us up at the airport!

(20) Some awesome sunset pics and texting with one of my faves!

From the Prairies

I am linking up for Five Minute Friday. The FMF is hosted by Kate Motaung on her blog Heading Home. Today’s prompt is “Place.” This community is such a gift to me. Today I even got to meet a blog friend in the flesh. What a blessing! We’d love to have you join us on Thursday nights for our Twitter party. 

I’m from the prairies of North Dakota, where the wind blows dirt and it is caked in every fiber of my being. In the words of one of my favorite children’s books, “You’re not from the prairie if you don’t know the feeling of the wind across your face.”

I’m from the prairies where my soul finds peace. A contentment like no other. I’m also from  the shores of Lake Sakakawea where the lock to my families story was finally unlocked. A freedom spilled forth as I told my fellow camp counselors. “I am the daughter of a woman who lives daily with a mental illness.”

I’m from Ashley Public School, the University of Mary, and Wartburg Theological Seminary. Places of education that have shaped me into who I am as a woman of faith. I am from blogging communities like the Slate Project and Five Minute Friday. Places that let me be fully who God created me to be.

I am from a place that allows me to hear the whispers of the Holy Spirit as she blows across the prairies of ND. I am from a place that makes me want to be a better person. I am from water that calls and claims me as a beloved child of God.

I am from the prairies of North Dakota; where wild flowers grow rampant and crowning golden fields yield the beauty of this land. Prairie sunsets and sunrises as far as the eye can see. A simple reminder of all God has created and reminds us all of our place in this broken beautiful world!

Sometimes We Just Need to Try

I am linking up for Five Minute Friday. The FMF is hosted by Kate Motaung on her blog Heading Home. Today’s prompt is “Try.” We’d love to have you join us on Thursday nights for our Twitter party.

One foot in front of the other, around each switchback, working my way to the top of the mountain. I’m not sure if I’ll get there but I must give it a try. I’m putting every fiber of my being into this climb. Because one doesn’t know what is above until one gets to the top.

Panting with every breathe, I’m ready to give in; to throw in the towel. But my friends, my traveling companions won’t give up on me. They too want me to try and are cheering me on.

After awhile, and much whining on my part, we get close to the top. Yet I’m finished. I don’t want to try anymore. I’m weary! My friends continue up to the top while my friend Scott and I start down the mountain. But not before I’m given time to pray and release some tears.

Then we begin down the mountain. We come to a clearing and Scott points to the mountain. You were there; probably three hundred feet from the base. In that moment, I realized sometimes it’s all about the attempt; giving it a try. It’s further than I’ve ever climbed/hiked before. I feel accomplished! Sometimes, it’s all about trying and doing what we didn’t think possible. Now I’m ready to try and hike even further!