Intimacy in Prayer

“God is the most important part of the Gospel. And that is why prayer is so awesome. We get to access God, Himself.”
Pastor Daniel Williams

“God is the most important.”

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And I’m stuck by how often I forget this. It becomes about the praying, the reading, the serving, the giving… It so quickly becomes about the stuff and the doing instead of the One we are giving to and doing for.

It reminds me of early on in our marriage when we were having an at-home date night. I spent all afternoon cooking a fancy meal and setting the table just right. I wanted the perfect fancy home date for my husband, but by the time we sat down to eat, I was stressed and tired. There was a still a kitchen full of dishes to take care of, and I didn’t enjoy our date night or my husband.

I had made it about the stuff, about the doing for my husband instead of about my husband himself. From that time on, I’ve carefully considered how I spend my day before we go on a date or spend time together. I want to enjoy my husband and be enjoyable to him and connect with him personally, not waste all my energy on doing things for him.

And it’s the same in my walk with God. There are days I find myself drowning in the do more, try harder life, and when I look deep, I realize that I’m not enjoying God. In those moments, I wonder how to find release. How do I keep serving and giving and loving and reading and praying, but change the why?

Because the doing is good…so good and so important. But without the right motives, the right why, it’s meaningless in the end.

So I wonder, how do I change my why?

And I’m quickly reminded that all of this stuff and activity is about a relationship…a personal, intimate relationship with God.

“God is the most important part of the Gospel. And that is why prayer is so awesome. We get to access God, Himself.”
Pastor Daniel Williams

When I’m finding myself overwhelmed with doing for God and failing to connect with God, prayer is the first place I turn. Because usually, somewhere along the line, I’ve turned prayer into a box to check instead of a conversation with the One who loves me.

It’s a beautiful thing to realize afresh that I can pour out every thought and worry and question and joy and agony of my heart to God. He wants to hear every little thing hanging heavy on my heart and mind.

I can come to him in tears, in joys, in worries, in pain, in fear, in truth, in sin, in expectation, in suffering, in questioning, in anger… 

He has born the sins of the world, so surely He can bear the weight of our worries and our fears.

But as I come to Him in truth and honesty, as I pour out my heart to Him, I need to listen to what He would say to me in return. When I do, I will find Him calming me, restoring me, loving me, and forgiving me. Though I might not feel His hand immediately, I am strengthened with the knowledge the He hears and He cares and He is good.

It is in talking with God through prayer that I find intimacy with Him renewed and restored and my faith in His care and goodness restored.

And I find myself returning again to this truth…

“God is the most important part of the Gospel. And that is why prayer is so awesome. We get to access God, Himself.”
Pastor Daniel Williams

Be blessed

For the Doers: {When Your Soul Needs Space to Be}

Two weeks ago we celebrated four years of marriage.Four years together as one.
Four years of love and joy and tears and hopes and struggles and new adventures and deep familiarity being born.

A couple from our church generously allowed us to stay in their luxury, oceanside condo for two nights to celebrate, and I was so excited. But it took me awhile to get there…


I am a doer…a planner.
I don’t want to waste time and opportunities.

I knew that this trip was an incredible opportunity for us to get away together…and I didn’t want to waste it.

So I stressed about what we would do, how we would enjoy it, where we would go, what we would see, and on and on.
Until it hit me, somewhere in the two weeks leading up to our mini-vacation…




We didn’t need to go and do and see and experience to make this trip perfect, to make it worth it. We needed to simply be.

Life right now is busy…crazy busy and often emotionally hard, not to mention the whole range feelings that come with preparing for a baby. So although I thought I wanted to sightsee and eat out and do a fun day trip and plan an awesome activity, I somehow realized that what we really needed was space to simply be together and rest.

We needed space to rest physically and emotionally.
We needed space to spiritually refresh.
We needed space to focus on each other.
We needed space to do nothing.
We needed space to rest from our work and our busy.

And every time someone asked what our plans were for our anniversary trip, I felt a little silly saying that we were just going to do nothing for two days.

But there is nothing silly about taking the time let your soul breathe.



I fought to ignore the lie that we needed to do in order to make memories and I reminded myself that it is good to take the time to simply be.

So I planned and prepped delicious meals that would make our trip special without taking a lot of work, and we each packed our swim suits and a couple of books and that was it. We spent the days reading, talking, napping, taking slow walks, talking long and deep, eating too much dessert, and watching tv together…and we didn’t even use our bathing suits.

And it was wonderful.

Maybe you’re like me…a doer.
Maybe you’re afraid of wasting time and opportunities.
Maybe you’re working yourself up trying to do something to relax, when really just need to do…nothing.

And different seasons of life require different things, but maybe, like me, you need to let go of doing in order to rest for an hour or a day or two days or a week.

Give yourself the permission and give your soul the space to simply be. You will not regret it.

Be blessed

A Helper Fit: {When You Feel Like a Failure as a Wife}

“Then the Lord God said, ‘It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.'”Genesis 2:18

There are days my eyes fill with tears and my heart beats fast with shame. Days when I wish I could take back the words, time I wish I could reverse the half-hearted actions, the silences when I should have said something.


And as I look back through the wives I’ve observed in my almost 24 years of life, I see lots of examples, good and bad. And I wonder how to get to be the wife like the good I’ve admired.
I’m not meek and gentle.
I’m not super-organized.
I’m not a home decor master.
I’m not brave and bold.
I’m not passionate and free.
I’m not decisive and submissive.

“And the Lord said, ‘It is not good that the man should be alone.’”
And I know my man needs a safe place, an encourager, a cheerleader, an advisor, a follower, a lover…and I see the list of ways I’ve failed.
I’ve been a discourager instead of his encourager.
I’ve been demanding instead of cheering.
I’ve been needy instead of being safe.
I’ve been a mutineer instead of following.
I’ve been a bad advisor instead of a good one.
I’ve been his enemy instead of his lover.

But God didn’t stop with creating woman as just any helper.
He said, “I will make him a helper fit for him.”
Fit for him. Qualified. Equipped.

From the beginning, God created woman as a fit helper.
He created me as a fit helper for my husband.
Women, He created us as fit helpers for our husbands.

And my mind screams that we messed it up. We took the forbidden fruit and brought the curse of the fall upon humanity.

Yet, even then our Creator had a plan. He sent His Son to die on a tree so that the sin we stole from a tree might be forgiven. And in Him, we have everything we need for life and godliness. In Him, I can be a good fit for my husband. I can be a fit helper.

Through the restoration of His Son, He is restoring in me the ability to be that fit helper given to us from the beginning of creation.

So yes, I’ll mess up.
And yes, I’ll have epic failures.
But I have been made for this and I am being empowered for this and there is more than enough grace for all my messy moments in Jesus.

Do you ever get discouraged about not being the wife you want to be? What truths do you speak into your own heart or have others spoken into you at moments like that?

Be blessed

Marriage is Together: {My Go-To Marriage Advice}

He preached two Sundays ago at our church and as an illustration for how we find the time to do what we value, he talked about how we still love to be together as much as possible.
“If she didn’t have to work or have anything else to do, she’d sit at Starbucks all day while I worked just to be near me.”

It’s so true.
Not in a crazy, codependent way, but in I-love-to-be-around-people and I-like-making-eyes-at-my-hubby-while-he-works and who-doesn’t-like-sitting-at-Starbucks-all-day kinds of ways.


And you’re not me, so if that sounds like torture to you, don’t worry.
I am an extravert. I get lonely pretty fast, which I learned in college pretty quick. I never could study in the library; it was far too quiet. I needed people around. I needed to feel the life and the energy of real live humans coursing through the room.

And now, it’s that way with my husband. He’s my best friend and as someone who wants people always around, who better than my best friend? Just having him in the room makes my day a little brighter. Just knowing he’s coming home soon makes me smile.

But marriage isn’t all love songs and sunflowers.
There is that…and it’s so good.
But there are also days like we had on a recent day off…
Days when you plan a breakfast date and there’s a miscommunication that turns into tears that turns into hard conversations and humbling realizations.
But what makes a marriage good is knowing that you’re fighting together, not fighting each other. You’re fighting shoulder to shoulder to protect your love an intimacy and to break down barriers that spring up between you.

Your mission isn’t to be happy, it’s to be holy.
Your mission isn’t to feel loved, it’s to show God’s love to the world by loving each other.

So the hard days often end even sweeter than the good days. Because even when there are mistakes and tears, you can ask forgiveness and you can both re-chart your courses a little. And in the end you can stand shoulder to shoulder, a little closer, a little more united than you did before.
I don’t know where I first heard it, but I’ve held it tight these three years of marriage…


Don’t fight each other. Fight together against the problem. Fight together for a solution.

So if you ask me to write a card for bride-to-be with a bit of marriage advice, this is always going on the card. What about you? What is your “go-to” marriage advice? That one thing you always want to tell brides to be?

Be blessed

Fretful: {Recognizing the Harmfulness of My Worry as a Wife}

“It is better to live in a desert land than with a quarrelsome and fretful woman.”Proverbs 21:19

Did you catch it?
…that one little word?

Other translations say angry, nagging, or vexing…

But that word fretful…it stings because it is so often how I act.




fretful – disposed or quick to fret; irritable or peevish
to fret – to feel or express worry, annoyance, discontent, or the like

This disposition to worry…
This inclination to anxiety…
These characteristics are so deeply ingrained in my personality that I wonder if anyone will ever be able to describe me without using those or some of their nicer forms as descriptors.
High strung.

And when I fail to give my worry and anxiety over to the Lord, when I fail to breathe out my cares to Him in prayer, they soon begin to leak out me…as fretting.

And this verse cut me straight to the core…

“It is better to live in a desert land than with a quarrelsome and fretful woman.”
Proverbs 21:19 {emphasis mine}

Because when I’m fretful…
When I’m worried…
When I’m constantly stressed and anxious…
Then I become the angry wife.
The contentious wife.
The nagging wife who makes her husband want to live in a corner of the rooftop.

I don’t want to be that nagging wife…
So I bottle up my emotions or I try to mask and disguise my worry as “needing quality time” or “having a serious conversation” when really all I want is my husband to listen to my fretting.

How often am I choosing to carry my cares, when I should be casting them on Jesus?
How often am I clinging to my worries instead of making request of God with thanksgiving?
How often am I fretting to my husband under the guise of spending quality time with him?

I’m so thankful for a godly husband who listens and then rebukes my heart with the truth of God’s Word. And sometimes he’s gentle and sometimes he’s firm and sometimes he’s simply tired…but always he points me to Jesus.

Because our husbands are not meant to carry our burdens for us…

And our husbands can point us to Him…
And our husbands can show us the One who can carry our cares…
And our husbands can help us drag our heavy hearts to Jesus…

But our husbands cannot carry our burdens…they were never meant to. Jesus does that.

And having a husband who can help point us to Jesus is a beautiful gift. But I wonder if perhaps I should be gifting my husband with a wife who is learning to carry her worries to Jesus first? What would my husband be enabled to do if I freed him of the constant burden of reminding me to go to Jesus?

And there will be days when I loose focus and he’ll have point me back to Jesus, but there are many days when I can run to Jesus on my own.
And those days….
I can be support to my husband instead of a weight.
I can be a joy instead of burden.
I can be a helpmate instead of wandering heart for him to guide.

Sister, will you join me? Let’s learn run to Jesus first and stop asking our husbands to shoulder the burdens of our worry that they were never meant to bear.

Be blessed

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