Monday, April 29, 2013


She is twenty.

This gorgeous girl with her clear blue eyes and her sweet smile.
And her freckles.
I am so jealous.
She's my best friend, my inspiration, my partner in crime.

We've been together for ages, exploring and living, fighting, (of course) but always making up.  Things aren't nearly as exciting by yourself, right?

 We  love many of the same things, hiking, cooking, playing outside.
So those are the things we do together.

And we've always been super cool. . .

Well, she has.  I had some bad days. . . 

But, of all the things we love, laughing makes the top of the list.  I can think of countless situations, one of us having a problem or being in trouble, but always finding something to laugh about.  
She's like that.
Finding the good in every situation.  
{I have to help sometimes, but we are still human here.  :)}

So this year on her special day, my mother asked many of our friends to write something encouraging to Lillian, beautiful words for her to read over and over as the years go by.

On the morning of Lillian's special day, my family gathered around (with the addition of our amazing friend Olivia, who is practically family) to read to her the beautiful words from her friends.
It was lovely.
We cried.

And laughed.

Thank you to all who took the time to write something encouraging to my sister, who was truly touched by the evidence of so much love.
We get so caught up in our problems sometimes, so blinded by sin and sadness that we forget there are countless souls who love us for who we are.
And most of all that there is ONE who will always love us no matter what.
And that is what fills my heart with joy.

"Lilleyin, I wish you did not go.  I lov you so much." - Melissa Anne

". . .Lillian, when asked to write a note for you, I did so without hesitation.  The words came so easily.  I did not have to 'think of something nice to say.' That's because you are a wonderful person!  And I pray that God would bless you richly on your birthday and always!  Keep following God's direction in your life and cling tightly to Him always. . ."

"You always have a kind, positive, encouraging word.  You are thoughtful and friendly to those you meet.  You are quick to laugh and to share others' joys and sorrows.  You are a wonderful example for me to follow, and I thank you for that.  And Lillian, on top of being one of the most genuinely nice people I know, you are also one of the most beautiful girls I know. . . You are such a blessing to so many people, Lil!  Thank you for being such a wonderful friend.  Love you, sweet girl!"

My dearest Lillian,
It has come.  This day on which we gather to honor you and your lovely life.
I can't even begin to find the words to describe all that you mean to me.  You are so patient with me, especially when I don't deserve it (which, by the way, makes be feel especially terribly, and more like a lowly worm than anything else.)
But that is what I need.  A constant reminder of the attributes I know I need to possess, but so easily slip through my fingers.  You have a grasp on life.
Things don't seem to take you by surprise.  And even when they do, you somehow manage to keep your head and deal with them (well, most of the time).  You are a daily inspiration.  Watching you grow into a Godly young woman helped me realize the importance of growing in faith.  I was stuck in a rut of non-growth, but you helped pull me out, whether you knew it or not.  My goal was (and is) to grow up to be just like you, loved and appreciated by all.  You don't seem to see it, but people love you.  They love YOU.  For your sweet spirit and your quiet laugh.  For your continuing determination to show Christ's love, even when it does not seem to be wanted.  I hope you realize this as you read these notes, I did, just barely fighting back the tears.  I love you so much, my darling sister.  You keep me held together.  I don't know what I would do without you, and I pray I will never have to find out.  (Well now that I have finished this on a depressing note, I ought to think of something funny to say. . .so. . .I shall end with a Daily Odd
Compliment.  "Today, I gave myself a headache, trying to picture how someone would describe a jellyfish to a blind person.  And that's when I realized I shouldn't be left alone and I miss you."  He he he. . .)
Much Love,

Thursday, April 4, 2013

broken hearts

"Father, break my heart for what breaks Your's.
Give me open hands and open doors.
Put Your light in my eyes and let me see
that my own little world is not about me."
My Own Little World - Matthew West 

We all have those days.  The ones where nothing seems to go right, when all you want to do is curl up in a little ball and cry.

When you feel like your heart is breaking.

You are human.  I am human.  We have emotions, feelings. . .we love. . .

And when everything seems to be going wrong, there is One who hears your cries, listens to your prayers, but most of all, He loves your heart.

He loves you.

Remember it if you are on top of the world, and when you are at your lowest.  When you are happy, and when you are sad.  Remember that He loves you always.

Because sometimes it takes a broken heart for true love to seep in.

Sometimes failure gets the best of you, knocks you down, tells you that you will never be good enough.  But don't believe it.  Get back up and move on.

You are strong enough. 

So, what are you waiting for?