Little Things of Mornings

bravery, contentment, daughters, Faith, family, grief, Peace, rest, Vulnerability, wisdom, wonder
Mama’s Chair

“…His grace will lead you in small things as well as great.” Jean Nicolas Grou

I returned to my September spot this morning. I told myself October would be a reset in my health, holiness and change.

Instead, very little changed simply by changing my morning spot. If anything it sort of stalled everything. No table for coffee, no place to place my Bible except my lap.

The morning sunlight through the blinds was blinding instead of a glorious welcome.

Still, I stubbornly chose to sit in the spot because someone said it helps to change your routine, helps to motivate you to do simple things like choosing a different chair.

Three days before November, I’m back on the sofa, my spot on the end.

I look to my left and am reminded.

This is the place of my peace, of growth, acceptance and connection with Jesus.

I gaze at the empty chair, the one that was weathered yellow when I took it from my mama’s house. Now it’s a soft white and becoming more worn from sitting, less angelic.

It’s a soft place.

I look towards the wall and see the sunlight beams finding my art. I see why I needed to return and move slowly towards November.

The place on the sofa that accepts me as I am and greets me with how far I’ve come.

I’ll reserve my mama’s chair for reading or for a certain toddler to rest her chin on the arm as she takes a break from being a “monkey jumpin’ on the bed”.

I’ll treasure the legacy of the yellow garage sale chair, the one that felt special in my mama’s old home and is even more at rest here.

The tiny Target pillow amongst the others reminding me to “see good in all things”.

See good and walk freely.

“and I shall walk in a wide place, for I have sought your precepts.”
‭‭Psalm‬ ‭119:45‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Continue and believe.

Keep quietly seeking. You are growing.

Wisdom Stories

Abuse Survivor, bravery, confidence, contentment, courage, daughters, depression, family, grief, hope, memoir, Peace, Redemption, rest, Uncategorized, Vulnerability, waiting, wisdom, wonder
For she is your life. Proverbs 4:13

I watched the soloist in worship, saw timidity in a way that led to her being brave. Fairly new to the stage, I’ve been attentive to her growing. I long to know her story.

Has she always sang so bravely, was it a thing she knew she’d always do? Was it a path that opened before her and at last she agreed she was able?

I watched as her hand held the microphone in its stand. I listened as she told me it’s God’s breath in me that led and leads to my breathing. She opened both hands towards the ceiling as her voice was elevated, “Great are you Lord!” I joined in agreement.

I’d still love to know her faith story. I’d like to know her journey as a woman.

I sat in the white chair later, the chair that was yellow when my mama got it. She had it in her den and I don’t recall her ever sitting there. It was positioned in front of her place for sitting, a place she could simply see it.

It faced the wide windows that opened the view to the field, the skinny lane that announced visitors. My mama lived alone for a bit and her yellow chair is only one of a few things she gave me. The others, ceramic roosters and a bracelet, now broken and not really jewelry, “costume” the jeweler said, “not worth anything”.

The yellow chair now recushioned and covered white, the little roosters and the bracelet, all yard sale discoveries.

My mama had very little.

Her legacy is wisdom. Wisdom and spontaneity, gifting herself with an occasional treat!

I thought of her as I drifted into a nap on Sunday. The yellow chair now creamy white facing my own wide windows.

I found solace in the soft chair, curled like a baby in my mama’s not made for sleeping chair.

I rested in the certainty of her joy when she found the fancy to her yellow chair. I celebrated her deciding she was worth it, something her life had never told her.

No wonder I find comfort in my mama’s yard sale chair.

It’s a side of her story she really didn’t tell. Her story of strength, of being worth something other than what life had shown her. A story of the bravery in believing, to wake to your very own beauty.

To believe in yourself because of God’s plan. I sit in my mama’s humble chair and feel the softness of her wisdom, I feel able to keep believing I am more than what my hard years have told me.


Continue and believe.

There is wisdom in quiet joy. There is wisdom in pursuits that are tentative.

There is safety in remembering another’s very own wise path, as far back as when the writer of Proverbs called wisdom a “her”.

“When you walk, your step will not be hampered, and if you run, you will not stumble. Keep hold of instruction; do not let go; guard her, for she is your life.”
‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭4:12-13‬ ‭ESV‬‬

I hope to ask her one day, the new solo singer in worship, “How did you get to this place of using your voice to strengthen my faith?” There is wisdom in her journey I’m certain. I long to know why.

Who are the wise women in your life? The humble ones, the overcomers, the singers, the confident business owners, the young mamas, the elderly still with us, the teachers, the artists, the singers?

Life makes us either hard or wise. Stay soft if you can, wisdom comes not from hardening.

What’s your wisdom story?

Breakfast with Daddy and Mama

Angels, bravery, Christmas, confidence, contentment, daughters, grace, grief, memoir, mercy, Peace, Stillness, Uncategorized, Vulnerability

Not intentionally, I sat in the section where the older men gather for breakfast.

I didn’t want to sit next to the windows, not cold just chilly.

I’m out with a list of errands, early and sans makeup or shower.

I longed for my daddy as one came and then another.

Comparing ailments, discussing Georgia football, reading the wrong day’s paper they discovered.

I listened.

I had been thinking about Christmases of before, about hard memories, about what Christmas sometimes does to people.

Still, I missed my daddy, he left me too young.

So, I finish my meal and then sip on strong coffee.

I’m listening to their commentary and their kindness as the biscuit maker from the kitchen’s early shift rounds the corner to join them.

They catch up with one another.

The tone is pleasant.

The biscuit maker and I, we belong.

I miss my mama and my daddy at Christmas.

I’ll be attentive to who they may have been had they been allowed to be here still.

My daddy would be talking with the biscuit maker, mama too.

She’d be joining in.

She’d know right away why the biscuits were “too flaky”, what the chef had done wrong with the dough.

The gentlemen are talking behind me now,

I’ll gather my tray and go.

Give them a nod, have a good day.

They’ll wish me the same I believe.

Now I go, I go in peace towards Christmas.

Wonderful Souls

Abuse Survivor, bravery, courage, curiousity, Faith, grace, grief, heaven, Homeless, kindness, memoir, mercy, Peace, Salvation, Trust, Uncategorized, Vulnerability, wonder

She dresses herself with strength and makes her arms strong. Proverbs 31:17

What will you notice in others today other than the surface of them, their predicament, their imperfect and even offensive behavior?

Will you consider what’s within?

Will it occur to you that your interaction with others is invitation to ministry, to the wonder of it all, our souls?

Yesterday I woke with the ache of an unpleasant dream. It was early morning and the drift of extra falling asleep led to remembering the news of Saturday.

A woman had been found by her son, unexpectedly she passed away. The dream had me rolled up knees to chest while my friend sat close by letting me cry. Letting me express the regret over not intervening, not being close enough to the sweet elderly woman’s need.

The dream was beneficial. I texted my friend told her I was praying for her because the measure of her grief is greater than mine. My friend had been much closer, like a daughter, like a fighter for this woman’s good, my friend was up close to the survival of this sweet tiny little spitfire survivor of abuse and valiant victor over the bottle despite being homeless woman.

Yes, I had a small part in helping but my friend had one much larger.

Still, both of us were engaged, captivated and humbled by the tenacity of Miss G. because she taught us both to be better, she taught us to keep keeping on.

As tiny as a child she was and on her very best days just as excited over living.

Miss G. was diminutive. If she ever felt diminished or delicate she kept that hidden.

The weak places she buried in the shadowy silence of her soul.

Let us in only a little, me much less than my friend and co-worker, Michelle.

Miss G. saw the wonder of life, love, believing in possible things and she lived, she lived in light of that wonder.

Monday morning now and I’ve switched off the lamplight. I am with God.

He alone knows the sadness of my soul.

Only He knows the benefit of sorrow’s visit.

Sorrow is grief’s measurement.

I allow the rivulet to lay on my cheek, I am thinking of my relationship with Miss G., the petite pulled together woman who fixed her hair to show up to clean the rooms in the emergency department of our hospital.

She was a hard worker, inspired others, was awarded for her attitude.

She came to check on me as I cautiously turned to see her, my condition still shaky, the vertigo and its nausea.

I don’t recall what she said, her look was not one of pity, no it was all her, her philosophy.

Never missing a chance to promote strength over pity.

Stay strong, don’t fall and don’t ever let yourself believe that God is not able.

She left me with this, this instruction as she looked long and directly before leaving.

This was not a verbal exchange. It was her heart seeing mine, this was her ministering to my soul.

So, I allow the tears to fall and let them seep below my skin, to dry on their own. I consider them a gift, drops on my cheeks like the resting rain on the last rosebud.

If I could I’d leave them much longer, evidence of love.

I thought of this sweet woman and of others.

Thought of the work I did before.

Then gave myself permission to see it as it had always been, ministry.

The work of overseeing a program that welcomed a woman in because she was without a home.

That’s not social or administrative or not for profit outcomes based work.

No, not at all.

This is and was ministry of the soul. I see now, clearly.

The encounters, the obstacles, the run ins with not ready for change people.

This was not hard work.

No it was soft, softening of all of our souls.

Me and they, all of us souls.

“Aim for restoration, comfort one another, agree with one another, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.”

‭‭2 Corinthians‬ ‭13:11‬ ‭ESV‬‬

The wonder of it all!

God intersecting our lives with others, all of us with burdens undeniable or hidden.

May I never lose my wonder!

There’s a tiny brick house I pass twice a day on the way to Elizabeth and back home.

A tiny porch bordered by mounds of garbage is lit by a bulb. Often the front door is open and a woman sits in a plastic chair that faces sideways, never turned towards the road, the passing cars, people.

I long to know her story.

I’ve decided it’s enough to simply see her as a soul.

To pray for a need not mine to know.

My friend’s grief over Miss G. is much more than my own. I texted her after my Sunday dream.

This morning I walked outside and I thought of how much you loved Miss G. how much she loved you. I know you are grieving. Miss G. is celebrating in heaven and she was greeted with “Well done thou good and faithful servant!” and I just see her grinning at Jesus and saying…”oh but you just wait til you meet Michelle!” You loved her well, God saw it all. Love you. Praises today, only praises.

What souls are yours to see?

Give yourself permission to go deeper than passing interaction or fulfilling vocation or expectation.

The soul is secret and yet so open.

Let your grace toward someone do unrequited things today.

Be satisfied beyond anything that you noticed and your work became ministry, became the work of seeing souls.

See them more clearly, love when opportunity comes.

Rest In Peace, Miss G. Thank you for ministering to my soul, the souls of so many others.

I will remember you well.

“Fill us with wonder
May we never lose our wonder
May we never lose our wonder
Wide eyed and mystified
May we be just like a child…”

Bethel Music

The Book of Luke, 24 Days of Jesus – An Advent Experience

Abuse Survivor, Advent, Angels, Art, bravery, Children, Christmas, confidence, contentment, doubt, Faith, family, fear, Forgiveness, freedom, grace, grief, happy, heaven, Homeless, hope, obedience, Peace, praise, Prayer, Redemption, rest, Salvation, Teaching, Trust, Uncategorized, Vulnerability, waiting, wonder, writing

My morning will not be boisterous with unwrapping, celebration won’t come until later.

Children are adults and we’re laid back and flexible, open and accepting. I’m anticipating the day, anticipating spirited appearances, nuanced moments of Jesus in it.

The angels told the shepherds not to be afraid when God’s glory illuminated the sky, an announcement of a Savior.

And Luke ends his beautifully researched compilation with the words of Jesus, again saying fear is something you should never feel.

Of what are you afraid today?

Why are you frightened?” he asked. “Why are your hearts filled with doubt? Luke ‬ ‭24:38‬ ‭NLT‬‬

What are you doubting on Christmas morning?

Everything changes at Christmas except for Jesus.

Jesus stays the same, do not be afraid.

Merry Christmas to you.

Do new things, you can and you will, I’m remembering now my mama, she came to me last night in a dream.

Angelic, she was as she waited for me and without a word guided my continuing, gave approval of my plans.

Finally fading into the distance after nodding, smiling, giving her okay of who I am.

A beautiful vision, angelic it seemed.

Do not fear, Lisa Anne. Do not be afraid.

Merry Christmas to you.

Merry Christmas to me!

The Book of Luke, 24 Days of Jesus – An Advent Experience

Abuse Survivor, Advent, Angels, birds, bravery, Children, Christmas, courage, fear, freedom, grief, heaven, hope, love, memoir, Peace, praise, Prayer, Redemption, Trust, Vulnerability, waiting, wonder

No Fear Now

Yesterday, the birds were gathering outside the window. I saw their shadows and the way they intersected the sun, a flash and dimming of the light coming in.

I didn’t turn to watch them, I missed their morning dance.

Instead, I was intent on the details, I was recording my fear. There were three nightmares and three pages of journal, trying to decipher the power and realistic terror of each of them.

Now, they’ve faded away, their scariness has passed and their power over my day, finally waned.

Jesus, God’s Son came to eliminate our fears. There’s no fear in love and His love came to take away our fears.

He told the disciples to fear one thing, evil, the authority that keeps us in fear, tries hard to keep our thoughts from heaven, to cast us into Hell.

To keep us kept by our nightmares, our minds pulling out the bad stuff in our sleep and it dancing dirty dances all night long. It is crazy, evil’s power making buried stuff come out to play, to mess with our peace , to derail our good days.

It is evil.

Jesus said fear is never from me, be assured, you’re worth so much to me.

“Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? And not one of them is forgotten before God. Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows.” Luke‬ ‭12:6-7‬ ‭ESV‬‬

There’s no fear in love.

Grief, like a terrible nightmare makes me afraid, a different and try as I might, unavoidable afraid.

Christmas comes with grief. It would be wrong not to long for those we lost; yet, that longing turns to sadness. We imagine times when we’d all love to just sit around and laugh and be happy over our happy times with those we miss, those we loved. It’s not that simple, that simplifying of grief.

All the more reason to draw near to Jesus, no masks are worn in His presence. He alone sees our anxious and sad, pretending not to be, hearts.

Do not be afraid. He knows grief sometimes feels like fear.

“”Fear not, little flock.”

‭‭Luke‬ ‭12:32‬ ‭ESV‬‬

No one ever told me grief felt so like fear. C.S. Lewis

I avoided the dancing birds. I was hoping not to see the red bird. I longed to see them most days, but, for a little while I felt different than before.

The bird rushing past my work window, a flash of brilliant red or the subdued female hue, I looked away.

This time avoiding the reminder that it’s not really you, only symbolic of you, my father and my mother.

I’ll see them again I know and I’ll accept the gift of their appearing.

A gift of love, a gift that holds no fear.

If I listen closely I might hear “Stop being afraid, Lisa Anne” and I may see my daddy looking over at her before nodding a yes, quietly and simply nodding “yes”.

Always, yes.

Sun, Sit

Faith, family, grace, grief, heaven, Peace, Prayer, Stillness, Vulnerability

He sat so that I might see

The sunbeams that were

Soon to be sunset.

We’d walked a sauntering stroll

Purposefully so and the same prayer,

A thought unspoken.

Peace for them, peace surround them

Evidently, all around and real.

As our neighbor lies passing.

The thought I keep thinking.

He paused and I attempted new prayer

But, nothing came.

Peace, I asked again.


And the Lab sat until I said “Come on.”

We continued on.

Continued on.

Hold Fast to Good

bravery, Children, courage, grief, love, Peace, Uncategorized, Vulnerability

Mostly people are talking today about the wedding, the biracial American actress not walked down the aisle by her father.

The Bishop who shouted out imagine love changing our world and the bride’s mother sitting alone amongst the spectacle and the spectacular.

Oh, I love a wedding! Gonna miss a bridal tea tomorrow but hope we get an invite to the wedding.

I’m trying to catch up now. I didn’t set my alarm and wake up in the dark for the nuptials. I’m catching up and I’m so sorry, but it only took a minute or two.

So, I scroll and I’m reminded of the ten students. Oddly, I thought how difficult it is to fathom, how impossible to relate.

The front page of our small town paper’s headline said, “Its real!” referencing the shouts of a teacher towards children, not a false alarm, a prank or a threat.

It’s real.

I had the strangest revelation today. Facebook has become the instigator, the shallow sharer, the ” Enquirer”.

Satisfied and informed over the Bishop’s exhortation, I turn away, searching for writing instruction and example.

I scroll Twitter and retweet, finally feeling to some extent how they must be feeling, parents


friends, grandmas, grandpas, custodians, coaches

boyfriends and girlfriends.

A student comes to America, to Texas from Pakistan and she’s soon to return home.

But, she’s been shot. Her life is over, I stared at the picture, a beautiful girl and I felt closer to feeling the thing that makes no sense.

Because the 17 year old with the hair in his eyes made me sad, made me wonder, made me unable to believe.

He could be a killer and how no one had noticed.

But I believe and I grieve only a hint of what they are grieving.

I see the face of a child thinking life was only beginning and yet it has ended.

Everybody woke to watch the royals and it had been less than a day passing when 10 people were shot to death by a boy who himself wanted to die.

And I, not normally political was changed and I’m grateful for it finally, by the face of a pretty girl in a country foreign to her.

Quite possibly believed to be safe, secure, American-ish home.

While everyone was watching a wedding, families in Texas were just trying to breathe.

And some were numb and ceremonially engaged in the plans to bury their babies, their daughters, sons, wives.

I cannot even.

I don’t know the answer; but, it may in fact start with love. May start with intentional notice and knowing.

Everyone is taking about the dress and the choir.

The outspoken spoken word, the lyric, the call to love.

If you don’t believe me, just stop and think and imagine, think and imagine, well, think and imagine a world where love is the way.

Bishop Michael Curry

What an odd contrast, a high school massacre and a royal wedding.

I’d be naive to believe it.

But, believe it still.


and love,

the answers.

Hold fast. Love is still at least a part of the answer.

Grief, After a While

family, grief, rest, Stillness, Vulnerability

I’ve just given a chunk of my evening, finally settled into my spot for an hour or two, to the perusing of quotes on grief that might be descriptive of what I’ve come to know.

Nothing quite right.

I’ve decided grief moves from an acknowledgement embraced all together of tightly knit mourning mourners to an individually and uniquely personal honoring of the one missed and longed for.

After a while, the void is always present when the all together gatherers gather; but, it’s not elaborated, opened for discussion, no longer any value in discussing the sorrow over the absence.

We’re all together in our longing, have the sense and sensibility not to invite it take over our hearts, our minds.

It doesn’t serve us well. Thank the Lord we know this, we know not to open wounds healed sort of like skin pinker than the other places where the deepest cut occurred. We’re okay each of us, to care for our own wounds, comfort our own souls.

There are new ways to grieve, after a while, after all.

I didn’t know when the morning had us listening to a sweet silver haired woman peddling plants, that I’d have cause and occasion to remember.

I didn’t know when my daughter said, “Come early, we’ll go the Farmer’s Market” that this same sweet lady would correct me when I called one plant something other than what it was and that she’d remind me not to over water.

Didn’t know I’d think of you then, had no idea how I’d be so happy I’d bought the three new tiny and tender plants later.

Tonight, I spent some time taking the old dirt out and adding new and I put the tender thick leaved plants in a semicircle design and just a little water, not too much, I put it back in the place next to the book I made to remember you.

To remember, the very first year after you were gone.

Little green plants in a shallow pot with broken edges, my sort of special way, the way I make sure to honor my mama, to remember.

Grief, after a while moves from a sorrowful stance to acceptance that honors, from remembering to keeping quiet your spirit and cultivating small reminders. Me

My Happy Way of Life #2

courage, grief, Labradors, Peace, rest, suicide loss, Vulnerability

The Labrador laid across my lap and

waited until I filled the bowl with

more popcorn for tossin’.

Broke my own rule because

it was comfort I needed last

night after sitting in

the seat of the one who supports

never ever feeling adequate

in my sighs over their sorrowful day.

Listening leaves me longing only

to undo what was done and

certain my sadness is minuscule,

only minutiae.