12/30-31/17

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Day 39

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God,

It’s weird hearing this song again and hearing it at the beginning of the year. I played it over and over. And over. And then with her. I remember singing it, feeling this burning in my cheeks. Because I wasn’t singing it just for me, but this friend too. It almost felt like embarrassment. Singing the truth that we are both loved by You, different strengths, weaknesses all covered in Your love. You. 

It’s weird how at the beginning of the year, I was so pumped up with this album. I never really expected to share it with this friend and feel threatened. Because parts of my story are so wrapped in playing this artist on repeat, hearing Your Word, about You, and holding on tight through many dark nights. Days. Trembling. Wondering. Were You real? What have I done? But mostly, I just wanted to get through. 

I never knew You’d use this artist so deeply in my life. And then to bring along this friend to the concert and watch her hand her book to her with lyrics from that song. It was bigger than my feeling I was getting something taken away. 

Except the friendship is. Walking away because of shame and guilt and it’s just great to come to know jealousy really does kill. 

And now I’m really afraid to put myself in a place where friends can continue being my friend. If they’d even want to. And I know they do. But God. Learning today that when I covet, it’s not trusting Your care for me, it really showed me a lot of the reason why I can’t handle Instagram or Facebook. Or struggle receiving good news from friends or maybe even for myself. It’s like this fear of I’m going to be left. When really I should be rejoicing. Part of me can, but I think I should be quicker to rejoice when You do things for me. It is Your love. I need to let it flood me and trust You will not let me proud. 
 I’m so afraid of that. So afraid of loving the gifts (which I do) more than You. 

Taking what You give and being like, Yep, all me. When I deserve none of it. It’s all a gift. Everything.  I can’t even take the gifts You give. The time this year has given me to see the twisty of my heart. The ache. The longing. It’s great. And last year around this time, I had spent part of it with this friend. There were friendship bracelets and a talk in the car where I said I think people know things about me already, but they don’t. And now its gone. Dead. 

You do though, God. You wove me intimately in my mother’s womb. So You knew how hearing Beckah Shae’s, I’ll be alright again at the end of this year, is interesting. I just ughh. I don’t get me and I hate how it bothers me. The jealousy. How it creeped and killed and I couldn’t see it as clearly until cutting the tie. And I don’t know how encouraging can continue holding it together. Could have. Even with my other friends. Whatif jealousy gets in and kills too?   And I wish I would’ve read more of never unfriended before I had to let go but maybe it wouldn’t have done anything. 

God. This just makes me want to be a better friend but mostly see how You are a friend to me so I can take it in. Soak it in. Ughh. I love You for endlessly listening and knowing me. 

Love,

Your tender-haired girl 

Ps. Please forgive me. For dismissing Your care for me. I’m sorry I’m so slow to receive.  Oh yay, the song I heard first at the concert. 

As sure as the sun will rise 

And chase away the night 

His mercy wil not end.

His mercy will not end. 

The tears. God. 

Previous letter here

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12/29/17

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Day 38

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Like a skin,

the light of Your love 

shines in. God, it’s as if

You have a flashlight to

look inside my heart. I can

almost hear Your whisper,

what makes you so afraid?

I will be left alone, forgotten,

abandoned. I will have to work

for approval when deep inside

I feel a child in the dark. I know 

You want me to have my eyes

open wide. The love comes, God, and it is 

a gentle touch.

I’m here, child. I’m here. I’m here. 

Say it again. 

Every battle–

this one where all

I see is broken within 

& without, You see more

than I am at this moment –

You fight. Reprise my joy

again. Let me find you here

in the morning where I see today, Your 

kindness shining bright. Right in my eyes 

with the sun, the cat across the table laying there. This tea.

The warmth. Ellie Holcomb coming 

through these new headphones aptly 

named, IJOY. 

You are doing something. Your joy my 

portion and my strength. 

One thing I know: I feel You

are going to tell me You are loved over 

and over again.

It looks beautiful and always wins. It 

makes me grateful.

You are the someone who will

not let me go. You are my success. You 

are going to come right on time. You will. 

You are here right now. Hold me still. 

Rest me in Your songs of deliverance 

now. 
love,

Your tender haired girl 

PS. 

“He will send from heaven and save me from the slanders and reproaches of him who would trample me down or swallow me up, and He will put him to shame. Selah [pause, and calmly think of that]! God will send forth His mercy and loving-kindness and His truth and faithfulness.”‭‭Psalm‬ ‭57:3 AMPC

I really like this verse in this version a lot. Save me from reproaches and the  slanders.  Not that I didn’t feel them earlier because as he was leaving, he kept saying to do something new. besides sit here with you. I don’t want to. I have no desire to. I don’t like that I don’t feel well either. Just gross. Tired. But maybe a 5 minute walk. I really want time with a friend. Actually I don’t, but maybe it will do some good too. Send forth your mercy and lovingkindness. Please and thank you. 

Previous letter here. 

12/27/17

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Day 37

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God, 
I want to cry. Your love keeps coming in waves. Strong. The way he makes up a song about me eating chocolate. How much I like it. I just sit there and laugh. So hard I want to cry. 

The way dad comes in later with butter and brown sugar oatmeal, like when I was little — maybe teen– and tea. The white chocolate cocoa from Starbucks from my sister. The snack bowl from my dad with carrots, olives and cheese, pickles and pretzels. It’s like when I was little. God. 

And watching tv with him and Carl, precious big dog that he is, laying on me and the sigh. That deep exhale that kept making me laugh. The fire. Your presence. It always takes me awhile to settle in. The texts from friends I still need answer. 

And an email that has totally thrown me for a loop. Total surprise. Wasn’t expecting. At all. 

I love how this songs says You are a compassionate friend. And asks that You shelter us with Your love. Yes. Please. 
Help me keep settling into Your love. 

Also, I’d like to see the skit guys in February. I know there is no way unless You make a way. Because it is in Texas. And that seems ridiculous to fly there for a day for a free event. But ughh. You know I love them, how they make me laugh. And it’s in a church. Which scares me but I’d brave it. Maybe. 

And you know I’d want to ask Trisha to go. But it’s ridiculous. Absolutely. But I see it and think, could you have favor with that? You know I’d probably go all, you guys helped me find Jesus. And see that he sees me. And make me laugh. So much. And introduce me to Brahm’s. Thanks. 😂 how about the shake shack? Can we grab one?

Yep. Crazy. But I guess I can wait and see. Also, you and Texas is very interesting. I know we’ve been through this. But it kinda still won’t let go. 

I don’t know where this is going except thank you. Fill me with your love until I overflow. I think it’s happening… 

Savoring You. 
Your tender haired girl

Ps. I can’t believe I’ll have read Your entire Word by Sunday. Really. I’m going to seriously party Monday. I can’t believe I did it. 

Previous letter found here.  

12/23/17

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Day 36

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God,

Let my soul 

feel a thrill of hope

of You coming to be

with me. Your joy filling 

my heart, praise rising 

to the top, spilling over

& out. Let fighting words

come: I will be still & know 

You are God. You will be exalted

over all the earth. You are making me 

new. You fight 

for me as I am still. You are 

faithful and true. I was fearfully

& wonderfully made in my mother’s 

womb. Your plans for 

me are for peace, not disaster. You can 

lift up my head, letting

comfort bring healing to me.

Bless you, child. Listen close 

to my healing song for you. Let

Me calm every fear. I will hold You to my 

chest. You can rest. 

Hear me whisper: I want to keep my eyes 

on You, be free.

Let love be the loudest voice 

to turn me from fear, condemnation. We 

will feast 

in the house of Zion one day, Lord. A 

table spread with corn 

& bread & asparagus & maybe 

a river of Nesquik will be fresh beyond 

the table. You will take 

a cup to draw me glass, place the 

chocolaty goodness before me. I will look 

at You with a smile saying, You are 

wonderful. Not just because of the glass 

of delight, but how You are longing to 

share it with me anyhow. No special 

occasion, but because you want to be with 

me, Emmanuel. 

I place my hope Christmas will

remind me. 

Be near me. 

Love, 

Your tender haired girl 

Previous letter found here.  

12/22/17

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Day 35

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God,

Love has a way 

to show me the one thing 

I know: the memory of me 

standing in the kitchen with

both of them fighting to take 

off my coat & me reveling the 

attention even though it was angered. 

You were there watching me look at the 

black 

& white tiles, wondering why I 

felt I had to grow up when I wanted to be 

a child. I am 

no victim now because You

hold my hand & show me

You’ve always seen me this way. You are 

more than I am-

more love where I have known 

loss. Fear where I have felt not

enough. Laughter where tears wet my 

face. Let my soul speak, He maketh no 

mistake.

This space where the silence is

thick, I believe He hasn’t forgotten my 

face. His ears 

are open to my grief. His kindness will 

find me here 

in this darkness, this shelter 

of His wings. I am as the little 

magnolia reaching to light, let 

me feel the countenance, the warmth of 

Your face. Here, I am 

safe, seen in the words I pave

without a sound. Let Your songs

of deliverance come 

lift my troubled frown. 
love,

your tender haired girl 
previous letter found here

12/21/17

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Day 34

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Lord,

Be the loudest voice 

amongst all the doubt

& fear swirling within,

wrapping me like a skin–

this skin– holding a heart. 

The way I find my body

randomly trembling, my feet

shake wonder if I will find

You, make me wonder how

I am wonderfully made.

Come be who You are. 

Come show me the beauty 

You see, come show the beauty

when You look at me. I place my hope in 

Your lovingkindness, O

Lord. Do not leave me. 

If you fall, You say, I’ll 

lift you. Your head won’t 

always hang low. I AM 

mighty to show you the 

light of your love, My face. 

Show me You’re never giving up, Lord. 

Show me I am loved

in a multitude of ways today. 

Like my sister doing the Macarena to 

Mannheim steam roller that made me 

laugh until tears wanted fall, or the fudge 

recipe from a friend that helps me taste 

and see You are good. 

And now maybe a nap since I am falling 

asleep writing this. 

Every battle is Yours, Lord,

but especially this: to believe

I am worth time to You. I am 

loved with nothing to show in

my hands, but eyes open to 

watch Your lips echo my name. 

My exhale a sound of surviving,

finally receiving Your nearness 

no longer as anger. 

love,

your tender haired girl. 

Previous letter found here

12/19/17

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Day 33

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God.

To my left 

is the dog.

To the right

is the cat.

One is curled in 

& the other stretched,

breathing in, out. In, out. 

Your grace abounds even 

now. In this place of unknown,

wait, You give me this space 

to rest. I am surround by You, 

Your love. Grief may blind me,

Lord, but You do not let me go. 

You hold me steady, hold me still. 

Remind me of Your favor 

surrounding me as a shield,

dismantling doubt as they fly, 

fiery arrows from the enemy

after my soul. 

love,

your tender haired girl  

Previous letter found here.