September 12, 2015

That Thing I Do Now - Volume 113

Happy Weekend, Sweet Friends!

I hope you enjoyed a great week - and pray you are ready for a little R&R this weekend... which, of course, should include a bit of reading time!

Today, we are featuring posts by Deidra Riggs, Anna K. Pasquale, Lisha Epperson, Amber Haines, Katharine Barrett, Tammy Hendricksmeyer, Karina Allen, Holley Gerth, a post from right here, and - of course - a video to wrap it all up! 

Happy Reading! (Ya'll know to click on the authors' names below to read the entire post, yes?)

* This post by Deidra Riggs over at The High Calling with Why Dignity Matters in a World of Amazon and Other Things...
"People who are different from us enrich us. Whether we make less (or more) money, belong to a different ethnic group or faith tradition, vote differently, or worship at a mega-church or in a downtown storefront, there is never any excuse to treat another human with anything other than dignity. In the words of Monique Valcour, “once dignity is assaulted, a downward spiral is often set in motion.”

God calls us to abandon that downward spiral in exchange for the higher ground of the Kingdom."

* This post by Anna K. Pasquale over at GraceTable with THE MESSY IN ME HONORS THE MESSY IN YOU... 
"...the hospitality of art encourages me to share even when my art isn’t finished, when it’s still in that messy middle stage of becoming. Grace calls me to be authentic in my messiness so another might feel a little more okay with theirs.

Messy is a place where the left out feel at home, where the hearts who long to create, but are afraid of doing it wrong, learn to explore and let go of self-imposed perfectionism.
Messy is a place and a way of creating that sounds a lot like grace to me."

* This post from Lisha Epperson over at SheLoves Magazine with A God Who Never Leaves... 
I watched a mother and child holding hands as they walked along Park Avenue recently. From behind I noticed their fingers gently but securely entwined. My eyes followed their connection which, despite the typical overcrowded sidewalk choreography, never wavered. She never let him go. And the boy, he held fast to his mama. I don’t know the details of their steadfast pairing but God whispered in my noticing, “You are held. Hold on, I won’t let you go.”

I knew in that moment the complete security of a Mother God who never leaves. God will bear. God will carry. God will sustain.

God’s love never fails.

My spirit knows things that my heart struggles to comprehend and my mind knows things this flesh never will—but God holds me. His shepherding of my spirit is a fearfully and wonderfully made gift. Oh, that I’d not be too afraid to receive it.

I hear God saying, “Rest. Trust.”

"What a good husband mine is. He took all four boys away for the weekend, and I got to knock out the moving boxes. I’ve touched nearly every single thing we own, and I found all the special places for our special things. I’ve cared for Isaac’s snakes, even fed them mice. I’ve walked around the yard in my nightgown, calling my chickens and growling at my dogs if they looked tempted. We do all love chicken tenders.

We are the girl creatures here: the two dogs, my 6 lady birds, and me. All 9 of us perked in a sudden toward the hill over the pond. We call it Whisper Pond, but something yonder wasn’t whispering. There are bobcats and coyotes here like what I grew up around when I was a little girl. Maybe it was a rabbit cry. 

The pond is clean, got a spring in it. The bass, the catfish, bream, they all have their special flash in the sun. They come to shore and say their hi. 

I’ve got chiggers up the back of my legs and a found tarantula in a box. I’ve got wasps building castles in a covered electrical outlet, and I have a clubhouse with a pirate flag. 

After the animals (I swear there’s a dead hog on the side of the road), the yip of an occasional dog, and the motor of the sometimes yard-work, there is nothing – but silence. It’s so quiet that the ears vacuum in on themselves. It has a mirage effect, a sound hallucination. Listen close, and the hills purr. They moan. Creation has a yearning heart."

This post by Katharine Barrett with Walking the Bridge to Autumn…
Yesterday we went for a drive. We wanted to be by the water, hear the sound of it lapping the shore, rushing over rocks. It wasn’t the ocean, just a river. Not too far away, but far enough to let us relax and whisper that the summer’s gone by oh so fast. And while we love, love, love the Fall, I’m thinking maybe I don’t want the summer to end. There are gifts in the summer that can’t be found in Autumn.”

This post by Tammy Hendricksmeyer with You are Not Impotent (On Words, Discourse, & Kingdoms)...
This summer, I’ve felt voice-less. I told a few friends, “It’s like someone ripped out my vocal cords.” In the last few years, it’s felt like the American dream (if ever there was one) has died. As if, the skies have become perpetually stormy and dark.

My social media feeds have been flooded with racial unrest, refugees and war, abortion, political bickering, financial fears, and marriage issues. They’ve pressed in like a heavy and smothering blanket. But out here, I’ve also seen gems. There are those who are humble, who do not negate grace and Truth. Ones who are bold and gentle. Ones who approach a subject, meditatively, filled with tender care and forethought.

I’ve seen how Love outshines a soul-starved world. Not the earthly kind, but a Love that surpasses our differences. Paul always reaffirmed his love to the churches when he wrote to them. His letters were firm and direct, but each anchored–in love.

I once felt compelled to enter the online fray, only to wade through deaf ears.

Civil discourse is hard. Listening, even harder. Approaching matters of opposition with love is a delicate balance of discernment and grace.

Love is not agreement. It is intention. It’s how a subject is broached, or a crisis, or a controversy. It’s how people engage one another.”  

This post by Karina Allen over at Incourage with Dangerous Hope...
"Hope is supposed to feel good, at least that’s what I’ve always thought. It should make me feel all warm and fuzzy, right? As of recent days, hope has not been a good feeling.

Over the summer, I was on a retreat with many of my amazing sisters here at (in)courage and a discussion arose with a few of them over lunch. We all seemed to be in some sort of transition dealing with housing. There were prayer requests surrounding selling houses and buying houses and what to do when you find your dream house and it falls through. Someone said, “Hope is dangerous.” That just about knocked me over! I haven’t been able to shake that thought. It is! Hope is completely dangerous! Somehow, I think God likes it that way.

There is often a misconception that whenever we commit our lives to Christ, all of our problems disappear. I am the poster child for the opposite. My problems didn’t disappear. Sometimes they were worse. I, too, am in a housing transition. I am wading my way through options of whether to stay or go. I have no direction, no peace either way. I’ve never been in this position before. Normally, I have some sort of leaning toward one option or another. I begin to move forward and God either opens doors or He closes them. This time . . . nothing. I’m at a loss!

I have been in the position before of having none of my options work out for me. I’ve been in situations where it seemed as though the Lord completely forgot about me. I have been hurt and confused and even angry at God. Those are not enjoyable emotions either.

So, here I am again. My circumstances may come as a surprise to me but they are not a surprise to God. But, I want this time to be different. I want my faith stirred up despite past let downs. I want to focus on His past faithfulness to me. I want to use wisdom and do what I can do.

Mostly, I want to lean into this dangerous hope. . ."

This post by Holley Gerth over at Incourage with God, We Remember… {A 9/11 Prayer}...
"God, we remember that day fourteen years ago as if it just happened.

We remember the moment we first heard the news.

We remember the images blazing across our TV screen and hearts.

We remember those we lost. We remember the heroes.

Today we remember all of this too . . .
(Click over to read the rest of the prayer, and add your own in the comments!)

* This one from right HERE with It's Just That Sometimes I Forget...
"Sometimes this world, --it comes at us hard
and it leaves us tender and breaking.

Not a one of us is spared.

Can I just whisper it soft and shaking, 
"I know..."

I know how the temptation is strong
to pull away, to isolate and self-protect.
I know how it can sound like wisdom and feel like grace
to build those walls, high and erect.

Oh, I have played that game..."

Lastly, we close This Thing up with a video each week and sometimes it is funny and sometimes it is worship... this time it's a new song from Amanda Cook called Heroes. Enjoy!

Happy Weekend! 


  1. Always enjoy the choice weekly blogs!

  2. Always love to see which ones you choose friend! Holley Gerth's prayer at InCourage was so beautiful. Such a gift! Oh and so much THIS friend: "Messy is a place where the left out feel at home, where the hearts who long to create, but are afraid of doing it wrong, learn to explore and let go of self-imposed perfectionism.Messy is a place and a way of creating that sounds a lot like grace to me."


Thanks so much for stopping by! I always love to hear your thoughts! Remember to: Speak Life - Be Love - Shine On!

Blog Archive