God's Heart, Uncategorized

My Open Letter To Pastors Everywhere– You Need To Get This

Dear Pastors,

Over the past 20 years I have been moved from place to place, sometimes by God, sometimes for personal reasons. 

That is why I’m writing this.
I am no one special. I have no title, no grand purpose or calling. I am like many within your flock, under your care– part of your Divine calling and purpose.

I am a member of the Body of Christ, and that means something more to me than merely being a member of a local church.

I have been given talents by God, and I strive to use them to help further His Kingdom purpose.  I have been given a heart of flesh that longs to please God. I love people, I love Jesus, and I love serving God as He calls me to.

I have seen where church leadership has some blindspots. I am asking you, humbly, as one who loves God and people–  please– drop all defensiveness and listen.

I believe that God has called Pastors and all church leaders to love His people as He loves His people, not to just instruct us about the Word of God. Not one of us is in the same part of the narrow road, nor have we walked with the same steps or strides. In fact, there are some who are crawling, there are some who are stopped– waiting on God to give them clear direction– direction that oftentimes comes through you.

Every Pastor wants the congregants who are running the race perfectly, with all the energy necessary to carry out the plans and purposes of the ministries churches offer. There are people who are called and able to fulfill those Pastoral dreams. 

I want to tell you, many simply are not. Many are trying to work out their Salvation with fear and trembling. Some want to please church leadership, but they are burnt out by doing so. Some feel weighted down by life. Some have been crippled by life’s circumstances, and they can’t “perform” as is often necessary. These are the people you are leaving behind. These are the ones you are hurting. Some of these equate how you treat them with how God wants them to be treated– and that is breaking God’s heart.

I want to encourage you to look at every person as the individual that God has created them to be.

We are all brothers and sisters in Christ, and God has entrusted you with the loving care to help nurture and grow even the most unloveable Christian.

I believe God wants to release His healing within His Body. Hurts caused by our own family in Christ. Reconciliations. Letting go of offenses. Repentance for how we all treat one another.

I believe He wants to begin from the top of the leadership down through the entire congregation.

What does this look like? More ministries for congregants, not just opportunities to serve. Listening more carefully. Being approachable, a healthy relationship attainable outside of jumping through specific hoops to prove worthiness of your time, attention and appreciation. 

Removal of any “hierarchy” mindset that in any way belittles your congregants in your eyes.

There are millions of Pastors, and every one of you is a unique individual created by God, just like all of your congregants are. 

I pray you will read this, that you will seek God concerning this. Not because I am asking, but because God’s Judgment begins in the House of The Lord. We all need to be far more sensitive to God’s Spirit than we are to the opinions of ourselves and others.

God’s love is not tough, it’s full of compassion, patience and deep understanding.

So should we all be towards one another.


Your Sister In Christ

Christian Thoughts, God's Heart, The Past, Walking With God, What life has taught me

The Spiritual Damage Of Anorexia

I’m a former anorexic and bulimic, reformed through Christ. This post has been a long time coming.

To look at me now you can’t tell I was near death at one point from practicing anorexia.

The Spiritual consequence is what I want to get into with this post. I don’t think I’ve ever read anything about that before.

Fasting is an important part of our growing relationship with God. When we fast unto God, we deny our flesh to set aside our physical wants and needs temporarily to focus on seeking God. We fast to repent, seek God, grow in our faith and understanding, and to actively put Him completely first. The focus is God, not our body, not the avoidance of food.

Anorexia is a tool the devil uses to corrupt that. Fasting not only becomes an obsessive practice of focus on ourselves. Opportunities open for the demonic to gain footholds in our lives, choices, beliefs, vision, perspective and practices. The devil sells us the idea we can obtain perfection.

When Jesus is our Lord and Savior, God sees us as perfect because Christ is in us.

Through the practice of Anorexia, the devil causes deformity within our spirits and our understanding. The devil clouds our vision, and converts our perception to a distorted view and belief system– the belief that our body is the enemy we need to fight against.

The Bible is clear that our battle is not against flesh and blood. We are transformed through the renewing of our minds, new creations through Christ Jesus.

Striving for perfection, we work hard for acceptance and approval of the world. But like a small kid in a game of Keep Away, or Monkey In The Middle, we never lay hold of it. The constant effort steals focus, energy, confidence– reality. The bar gets raised higher. It’s always just… out of…


God accepts and approves of us because of Jesus. We don’t have to prove our worth to Him because Jesus showed us how much He values us by dying on the cross, and rising up again. We are wanted, welcomed by God.

Jesus made it possible to have acceptance from our Creator. We can have a relationship with Perfection Himself, and He is working to make us the best version of ourselves– for His glory.

We have a choice: We can work really hard for a distorted version of perfection that’s never within reach. Or we can rest in God’s approval and meet Him in the changes He makes as He perfects us His way.

I have experienced both. I prefer God’s way.

What life has taught me


heardYou know what it’s like to have something to say, but you just can’t be heard, right? Like at a rock concert , trying to talk over the music. Or when you have advice for someone whose shoes you have been in, but they just won’t stop and listen.

I have had some medical issues going on for quite sometime now. A couple of times in my life, I have dealt with edema and swelling. This most recent dealing has lasted 14 years.

Often when I go to the doctor, they have an agenda: find the quickest, easiest method to get me out of their office. Well, ok, that has been the majority of military doctors. One doctor pulled me into his office where his desk is, after I explained my reason for making an appointment: my arm hurt. Badly. So badly, I could barely move it. I didn’t know what I had done, except we had just moved back overseas, and I had to carry a lot of heavy luggage and 2 babies. He completely ignored my pain, and sat me down at his desk to counsel me. On what, you might ask? On the need to lose weight and exercise. I didn’t even bother to try to explain my problems with all over swelling and edema, he never would have heard me. He had an agenda. So, I fumed silently to myself, left, and NEVER made another appointment to see him again. I was sure that was the end of it. I was wrong. That following Sunday, smack dab on the front page of the Stars and Stripes was this doctor’s picture, and an article he wrote about  the spontaneous counseling session he forced on me. He didn’t “quote” me, didn’t mention my name in particular, but he used  our conversation along with some of the things I did actually say, and of course his “wise words”, putting me in my place. If he wasn’t military, I could, and would have sued him! But, I can’t do that. So, instead I chose to not trust military doctors again. I’ve had a few appointments when necessary, and especially when I was pregnant. I did try to deal with this edema again, years later, at a different military medical facility, and a civilian Naval doctor took my concerns seriously. He listened, but he was limited in how he could help.

About 2 months ago, I had some concerns about some things I am experiencing, so I hesitantly made an appointment. After the appointment, I wasn’t sure if I would actually be taken seriously. I thought she had put me in for some routine tests to look for my concerns. Then I didn’t hear from her again, but her office actually calls me every couple of weeks to check in with me.  That’s a new thing.

Because of some concerns with my blood tests, she had me referred to a Hematologist. I’ve seen him 2 times now. The first time I wasn’t sure what to make of him. He asked me some questions, did a short exam, and sent me to have my blood tested again. He had a nurse talk with me, and she is really friendly and helpful. Today, I had a follow-up, and the doctor asked more questions. He told me about my blood results, which are a bit scary. I don’t exactly know what’s going on with me, but he has explained what I can expect from him and the process he thinks I need to go through. I will see another doctor, and possibly a third doctor to find out what’s going on. And, more blood was drawn so he could look at it even more closely.

Today, I was heard. I was taken seriously. I was asked how I feel, what I think, what I am concerned about, and if I had any questions. I have a new faith with doctors that I have never had before.

Today was a new day, indeed.

As frustrated as I have been all these years, I can imagine how frustrated God feels when we just won’t listen to Him. Sometimes we value our opinion above what He has to say. We don’t want to hear what He’s saying because we don’t want to change something He wants changed. Or we don’t believe He is talking with us, we aren’t always very good listeners to God.

So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.  Romans 10:17


Nuggets I Learned from my Childhood, Uncategorized, Walking With God, What life has taught me

“Don’t Apologize”

I’ve spent most of my lifetime apologizing for who I was and who I am, for simply being here, maybe in someone’s way, or saying something that might have given the wrong impression or just didn’t get my point across. I’ve apologized and been completely introspective, believing something was wrong with me, because someone was positive I must have been flirting with a worship leader when I was watching them for upcoming cues, as I would a conductor in a symphony.

I’ve mentally kicked myself probably near 1 million times for all the mistakes I have made or possible wrong impressions I unknowingly have given.

I’ve eased up on myself over the years, because the focus stopped being so much on how I was messing things up, the more I grabbed hold of my life and learned to follow God. But sometimes, I can feel that try to pull me down again. It’s like trying to swim to the top, to breath, but being pulled back down by someone who just doesn’t want me to reach the surface. That’s what the negative opinions and gossip, misunderstandings, misinterpretations and even lies of my past tries to do to me.

I’ve apologized time and again for making mistakes, for giving an unpopular opinion that offends someone (but they don’t apologize to me in return, as their opinion can be just as offensive.)

I don’t expect from others what I know should be expected of me.

So, lately, I’ve got some stuff going on. I’m realizing I have some health issues that stem back to before I was even a teenager. The medical diagnosis is taking F.O.R.E.V.E.R. but I’m pretty positive I know what is wrong. At the very least, I know the generalized category of what is wrong with me. Had I been diagnosed as a child with this, would that have shaped my life differently? Would I still feel the need to constantly apologize for my very existence that alone seems to have caused so many problems, less or even more so? I believe some people actually think if I had not been born, their lives would have been tremendously more easy, and some of the problems just wouldn’t have been. Too bad, cause the only place I’m going is probably shutting the door to them. I am grateful for the life God has given to me, and I am satisfied. Should I apologize to them for that, do you think?

So, I’m sorry.

I’m sorry for being awkward and untrusting.

I’m sorry for being messy and unorganized in the past, yes I know, I was pretty bad.

I’m sorry for ever having needed to rely on someone else for help.

I’m sorry for having an opinion different from yours and not just keeping it to myself.

I’m sorry for having been promiscuous and confusing that with being cherished and wanted.

I’m sorry for leaving a church where the lack of grace was suffocating me. I’m also sorry my husband felt the need to leave, as well, all by himself. I’m sorry so many misjudged and thought I convinced him to leave, too. I’m even more sorry for the hurt inflicted in him, and me as well, as we felt rejection from some who had once treated us like family.

I’m sorry I’ve cut so many people out of my life over the years, because I just do not trust them not to hurt me.

I’m sorry for misunderstanding what you said.

I’m sorry for having a possible physical disability that seems impossible to actually diagnose.

I’m sorry for thinking a fire hydrant was a child dressed in winter clothing, in the middle of the hot summer, because my eye sight gets so blurry.

I’m sorry that you think I’m stupid.

I’m sorry for being born. Really. I’m sorry for being born. Because, we all know I had so much control over that. (Yeah, ok, this last one was pure sarcasm.)

I often hear from my husband, “Stop apologizing. It’s ok. It’s not as bad as you think. It’s not as frustrating as it seems. You’re fine.”

I can’t just quit. Because maybe apologizing will help people who don’t like me because we differ in political or religious opinions, to like me. Maybe people won’t judge me so harshly as being stupid because I made some mistakes, or I got confused about something, or I don’t debate the way they think I should.

Maybe people will think as highly of me as I think of them, if I just apologize enough for being so inadequate and insignificant.

I purposely cover over the hurts and negatives that others have caused me. But, I don’t see that happening for me from most people. So, I guess if I apologize enough, maybe, they might realize that sometimes I need to be apologized to. <shrug>

Some people, and they know who they are, have yet to begin to scratch the surface of apologies I deserve to be given. But, because I understand how to forgive and look past things in everyone else, except myself, of course I will overlook things and press on, surrendering the pain and frustration to God.

By the way, I’m getting better at not making myself the exception. That is the healthiness God is bringing about in me.

I hope you’re getting better at apologizing.   😉

A Mom's Perspective, American, Christian Thoughts, Walking With God, What life has taught me

Getting Our Attention, and Missed Opportunities

Jami's ipad 026

If you have children, then you understand what I am saying when I tell you my mind is exhausted from the attention grabbing attempts of my kids. I have 4, and they all want my attention, they even compete for it at times. When my dog climbs into my lap, my 2 year old will rush over and try to push him off, climb into my lap for just a minute, then climb back down. He has to let the dog know who owns my lap, already showing 10150407652477456signs of that male conquering spirit, lol.

Each of my kids has their own way of getting my attention, and we have a method we call the “interrupt rule” that they are supposed to follow (put a hand on my shoulder or arm and wait until I can give my full attention), but of course they often forget to follow it. My daughter,  DaBee , will text me questions and pictures she takes with her phone, or come over to where I am and start talking 111940127455about whatever comes to mind. She gets excited and shows me pictures she draws, or things she sews. She is so talented! My oldest boy, “Jonenator Dude” (JD), he waits until I am alone to talk about his different collections. JD can also be competitive  with the others and try to demand I give him my full attention. I am teaching him how important it is to be considerate and patient, some days those aren’t easy lessons to teach. My middle boy, “Little Red” (LR), he often copies his older brother, or tries to get my attention away from JD, in order to show me his latest drawing or tell me about his Lego creation or a game he’s excited about playing. My 2 year old, “Doctor Oo!” (DO),  lately he will stand behind me and put his hands on my cheeks or in my hair. Sometimes he just sits next to me and takes hold of my hand. He loves to be playful and show me his toys by pretending to shoot me with them, or holding them up close in my face, and often I don’t mind at all.

But, I have learned from past mistakes. Those times when I have been too busy to look up and listen, or when distracted and frustrated, I pushed them away… I can’t get those opportunities back. I lost out.

72083967455As God’s child, I don’t feel I have to try to get His attention. But, I’ve been thinking about how I become aware of God trying to get my attention. How many times have I missed Him during my distracted daily activities, or when I’m frustrated by something or someone? When do I become aware, then give Him my full attention?

Sometimes, I have a song or a verse on my mind that woos my attention to Him. Sometimes I have a sudden urge to pray about something specific, or for someone specific. At times a subject comes to mind with a sadness that overwhelms my spirit and I can’t help but pray and seek God on behalf of what He places on my heart.

I am desperate to not miss Him, to not miss an opportunity to pray or speak into someone’s life, or just be available in the way He impresses on my heart. Except when I’m distracted by the cares of this life. Then I miss Him.

But, because I am distracted, I don’t miss that I miss Him.

That makes my heart sad, when I take the time to let myself think deep on that.

Isaiah 55:6 “Seek the LORD while He may be found; Call upon Him while He is near.” (NASB)