Sitting with Jesus at Sex Camp

I remember meeting Jesus once at sex camp. It wasn't our first meeting, but an important one.Everyday I walked up to a giant, beautiful, colorful painting of Jesus’s head, hair blowing in the wind. The massive painting hung on the wall of the Church where I was attending a week long retreat for women being treated for female sex addiction...what I like to call 'Sex Camp.'When I first saw the painting I was taken aback. Great art captures one that way. And the size, my God, it was huge. I said “well hello there Jesus.” In that moment he seemed so real with his piercing brown eyes bigger than my head. In the course of the week, every time I passed it I'd say “Hi Jesus!" I’d try to say sweetly but somewhat sarcastically “it’s another great day at sex camp!”  "How are you feeling about sex camp?"  "Me?" "Oh, well I feel deep shame & loathing self-pity, so there's that. I'd rather be on a cruise. No offense."Join me to read the rest over at the Mudroom blog?&n … [Read more...]

When Jesus, Facebook apps, messenger bags, Scandal & Ruby Dee all Make Sense in the Same List

Beautiful Maya viaDon't shoot the messenger!Hey, I'm just the messenger!A flippant yet poignant phrase, no?  The implication that someone is bringing a message of some sort to me from someone else, carrying it like a box of unsteady explosives or a barrel of chocolates.  The medium is superfluous, the messenger simply has something to deliver and it's usually not from them.  Either way, a message is sent.When I think of MY recent messengers, and all the messages sent to my brain folds, a few salient examples come to mind...|||| The Facebook app, glorious messenger it is, always delivering straight to my brain through a ding and a touch, messages of friendship and reminders of people who love me.  Me!?!?!|||| The Bible.  Yesterday, Psalms 118: 5 slayed me. "Pushed to the wall, I called to God; from the wide open spaces, he answered.  God’s now at my side and I’m not afraid; who would dare lay a hand on me? God’s my strong champion; I flick off my enemies like flies. … [Read more...]

What Makes My Christmas Merry

Whose are you God?I am hers.She. The one who wants to be raped. Beaten. Pillaged. She does not want a man to make love to her. No. She wants to be screwed. It ain't pretty. It ain't romantic. It does not feel good. It does not need to. These are blurred lines. He knows she wants it.  Do it like hurt.I am hers.She. The one who does not want to be raped. But there she is. Raw. Red. Pulsing. Terrified.  It is finished.I am hers.She. The one who's husband left. He made her believe he loved her.  She thought she was somewhat worthy, somewhat loveable... Her reality is no longer. She's rocked.  Until hope comes, she's done.I am hers.She. She buried her Mama at 9.  She sat with her 13 siblings while they carried & laid her most treasure in the dirty ground.  Her existence sucked out from underneath her feet.I am hers.She. The whose husband beat, beat, beat her down. She got up but ultimately he won.I am hers.Whose are you God & for whom did … [Read more...]

Rescue, Healing & Orphans

Eager to welcome a beautiful soul today, Kristi Scott whom I "met" through Twitter & the #FMFparty community.  Besides looking a little like my sister, I feel drawn to the beauty of this sweet soul, so passionate & lovely.  Her post is part of a series of guests post over the next couple of months on the theme of Genesis 50:20, What you meant for evil, God meant for good.  This passage in particular stuck out to me a few weeks ago in a marriage class the hubz & I have been attending.  It’s a complex idea worth exploring, especially when ‘ish is hard!  Since I recently decided to put a little more focus into editing my memoir, it seemed a good time to invite my fellow writers to help explore this issue here, while I explore it in my book.  I hope and pray the series will lead to an exploration of the redemption happening in your own life.  Amen & Amen.////I was a wide-eyed, idealistic 23-year-old woman when I decided to uproot my new post-college life and move to … [Read more...]

Respect Your Story

I'm honored to welcome Minister Ken Pettigrew to my blog in his second guest post here.  Ken is a gifted man of God with a heart of gold.  He's a man of passion and an amazing thinker.  He's given us a beautiful gift of vulnerability in this post. (Thank you so much, Ken)! This is a brotha to respect.  His post today is kicking off a series of guests post over the next couple of months on the theme of Genesis 50:20, What you meant for evil, God meant for good.  This passage in particular stuck out to me a few weeks ago in a marriage class the hubz & I have been attending.  It's a complex idea worth exploring, especially when 'ish is hard!  Since I decided recently to put a little more focus into editing my 100,000 word BEHEMOTH of a memoir, it seemed a good time to invite my fellow writers to help explore this issue here, while I explore it in my book.I hope and pray the series will lead to an exploration of the redemption happening in your own life.  Amen & Amen. … [Read more...]

Oh Yes I Will

I read my friend, Sarah Bessey's beautiful words's the other day and wept.  Ten minutes later I'd written the following response.////"I’m the one who gets on your nerves, the one you wish would go away, I know. Maybe I embarrass you. Maybe I worry you. Maybe I anger you. Maybe it’s a bit of insecurity? jealousy? fear? Or maybe, just maybe, you’re afraid of people like me." -Sarah BesseyI too, feel this tension when I find out a friend is embarrassed by my online words.  I feel this when the people who know and love me grow uncomfortable with my details.  Unlike a random reader, they got a dog in a fight, I get it. People tell us they worry.  They worry about these "new perspectives," this new boldness.  They hear me lament over African-Americans abortion statistics and they tell me to shut up about it all ready.  They call me a f*ck!ng c*nt  for calling out the racism surrounding a movie.  A movie.You feel the weight of Sarah's sentiment "I'M NOT AFRAID OF YOU!", just like m … [Read more...]

Letting the Stupid Little Ni**er Go

Today I started my new job as a Program Director for a local nonprofit.  It was fabulous.  There are many aspects of this position I know I'm going to love including getting to train several non-profit Boards in volunteer management & volunteer recruitment.  It's amazingly up my alley.  Thank. You. God.So.  I guess Ima' gone 'head & do my business woman thang, y'all.  (And keep using my beloved slang in about the only place it's appropriate).Most of you know my departure from my 12 yr. career in full-time professional ministry was a sad one for me in 2012.  I'm sorry for how I've droned on and on about it, maybe one day (maybe even today) it will be the last time I ever talk about how painful it was to realize I wasn't going to be with InterVarsity career-wise so-long-as-we-both-shall-live.  Additionally, I feel a tremendous amount of relief to know I'm not gunning to be a full-time writer-author-blogger though there was pain in that decision too.But now I'm here.  I … [Read more...]

When God is Quiet

~I was asked to write about when God speaks or didn’t speak.  When I was contemplating what I would write, I never considered writing it about when God didn’t speak.  I wanted to share about the times that God did speak and was clear.  Who wants to focus on those times when we don’t understand what God is saying or when we are not sure why God is silent?  Then at 11:49 p.m. as I am trying to sleep, God brings to my mind my confusion about how He has not told me his big plan for my life.  I’m still waiting.  Then it gets even better, I make a bargain, “God, if you take away my headache, I’ll go downstairs and write the blog right now.” He did, so here I am.Big Plan, No Precise DirectionsGod has a big plan for my life.  He has told me this through people who walk into my life for just a moment, tell me this glorious fact, and they are gone the next minute.  I have read in Jeremiah 29:11, “I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord.”  He knows.  I don’t.  I used to think that … [Read more...]

My Imperfect Jesus

~No one told me and how could they have known. I didn’t even know to ask. When the man on the stage began speaking about a changed life, a transformed life, and a forgiving God, how could I have known?I couldn’t of. So, I did what any longing, seeking teenager would do. I said “yes.” I said yes to this Jesus that was being preached, expecting it to change my life, but unaware of how or even why.What I expected though, if I'm being honest, was ease. I suppose on some level, I anticipated that a life spent serving Jesus would be a pain-free life, or at the very least, an easy life.But, I didn’t know the truth of this and no one told me then. No adult sat me down and explained to me that the promise of a new life was not the promise of an easy life or a carefree life. No one told me that, actually, opening my heart to the things of God would stretch and pull my insides to the point of pain--that where I could once sit callously and indifferent, I would now weep over injustice … [Read more...]

Technicolor Jesus

~“I just want to hear God. To know how he’s speaking to me” she said tearfully, looking at the ground her shoulders slumped in defeat and frustration.  From the Bible belt area of the North otherwise known as West Michigan Amy had come to the recommit her life to Jesus at the Urbana Missions Convention.  Though she had gone to church her whole life, knew all the right answers and that God theoretically was present she felt like she was missing something.As we talked I thought about how many times I had talked with students who felt similar to Amy- that they weren’t connecting with God as they studied scripture, prayed or went to church.  They felt like there was a missing piece of their Christian life.  As Amy and I talked and prayed together Jesus gave me an image- of her returning to her campus and hometown and beginning to see Jesus’ presence like she was wearing 3-D glasses- things that had seemed strange and blurry about where Jesus was at work in her life would begin to … [Read more...]