Monday, December 3, 2012

Message Received

But the angel said to him: "Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to give him the name John. Luke 1:13

For some unknown reason, my Dad's phone receives everyone else's messages except mine. I can see his messages, but he can't see my responses. It's frustrating, as intended communication fails.

Many times I wonder if my Eternal Father has received my prayers. I wait for responses that never seem to come, so I silently conclude: “The message just didn't get through.” So I pray again, secretly waiting for His...response. “Ok, no response, but at least confirm receipt?” Silence. Frustrating. Resigning. “Ok, I give up.” Was the message to Him for intimacy of communication or for personal fulfillment? Am I the child that continues to come with my desires or pouts when “feeling ignored”?

The truth is, that He receives absolutely every prayer; not based on His response, but based on His love. The truth is, that He is responding to me by His heart long before He responds to me through my circumstances. Sometimes He answers immediately. Sometimes He answers intimately. Sometimes He answers in silence. Sometimes He answers in scars. Sometimes He answers in my favor. Sometimes He answers in my faith. Sometimes He answers in my healing. Sometimes He answers in my hurt.

The truth is, He is always listening, He is always receiving, and He is always responding. The question is not His responding to me, but my responding to Him. Always.

Enjoy Him, Michelle

Sunday, November 11, 2012


This is what the Sovereign LORD, the Holy One of Israel, says: In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength, but you would have none of it. Isaiah 30:15

Every ounce of energy was gone. Every weight of exhaustion laid heavy on my ill frame. Ironically, I attended a “healing service,” as it’s often called, the night I fell ill. Healing was thick in the room as my state slowly worsened. In all, God moved over me. In the days to come, He guided me, protected me, and provided for me.

Healing comes in many ways. Sometimes how we expect, often how we do not. God may decide to reveal His glory through the pain; the only way He can fully and truly be seen. It is not our preference, but it is our healing.

God could have healed the common cold and sent me on my way. Yet, He had a greater plan: to heal by the hour, not by the symptom. He desired to show me His strength through the storm rather than His delivering from the storm. He desired to develop a more consistent faith, dependence, and trust in His leading rather than my moving. Above all, He wanted me to rest in Him and find my strength in Him alone. He allowed the extreme of exhaustion to settle over me noting, “You will rest here in My care.” And so I did. With body resting and mind racing, He waited on me as I waited on Him. So much surfaced in these Sabbath days: My neglect of prayer and His faithful Presence. My running ragged and His quiet restoration. My heart’s hurt and His heart’s hope. In quietness and trust is my strength, my healing, my hope, my love.

Enjoy Him, Michelle

Thursday, October 4, 2012


Pray continuously. 1 Thessalonians 5:17

Communication is the life of the friendship's flow. Like a great river, flowing free and strong, there were conversations of great beauty, depth, and power. Like any great river, boulders and whirlpools created conversations that were difficult, dangerous, and terrifying. All discussions were part of the passage of friendship – beautiful and horrible. Until, without warning, the current stopped.

Communication simply ceased. Rather, it deceased. Never to be resurrected again. One day, words flowed as free as the river. The next day, a dam of silence is discovered. Erected overnight. Still, silent, stagnant. Walk the banks and leave the boat; bury the dead and move on to new life.

On several occasions in my life, this has been the case. Empty boats by the river's edge – no word, no why, no goodbye. Hopes deferred, trust shattered, love left. When communication dies, relationship dies. In some cases, it may be a slow burning of the bridge between two banks. In other cases, such as mine, it may be an immediate obliteration of communication. Either way, love is lost.

The heart both feels the hurt and hears the constant call: “Be with Me. I Am desperate for your words again, my love. Some conversations will be full of beauty, depth, and power. Some conversations will be difficult, dangerous, and terrifying. Some days may feel like I Am silent, but I am never dammed, departed, or deceased. See that the current of communication is never ceasing from My heart to is up to you to release your dams in our relationship, it is up to you to stay in the flow, it is up to you, my love, to speak with Me. Slow to hear the rush of the Water's Words washing over you; Speak to bathe in the Love. This is a River of Relationship that you can trust until the very end. I Am always flowing, never ceasing. When you are abandoned by other loves, remember how I wait for your return. When you are distracted by other discussions, remember how I long to hear your voice. Stay with Me, speak with Me, listen with Me as I Am intimately in you. Find all that we desire in each other; every moment here.”

Enjoy Him, Michelle

Friday, September 14, 2012


We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:5

Our conversation was on communication. By invitation, I offered my observation. And so I began: “I understand that when something comes into your mind, you shut out all else and run full steam ahead with that determined thought,” I told him. “I hope to present various options for you to consider before making decisions; but words are useless to you until you listen me. I'm not presenting thoughts to fix your circumstances necessarily; I am presenting ideas to broaden your options.”

The observation wasn't for my friend, as it turned out. It was for me.

The Holy Spirit spoke: “May I present a reminder of my healing ways, obsessed one.” “Yes, Lord,” I responded. And so He began.“When your weekend plans got completely turned around from your expectations, what did you do?” I answered: “I obsessed over it for a day or so. I was feeling quite justified in my obsession. Then I laid it on Your altar and trusted You.” He spoke again, “When you felt as if you ruined a recent job interview, what did you do?” I answered, “I obsessed over it for a day or so. I even invited friends into my obsessed thoughts. Then I laid it on Your altar and trusted You.” He spoke a third time, “Where is your history and where is your healing?” I responded in truth, “My history speaks of countless times where I become fixated on an issue until it is it resolved, either in reality or in my mind. My insecurity has brought me to run with my obsessions right into ruin. My healing has come from listening to You. My healing has come from trusting You. My healing has come from obeying You.”

Now my own words confirmed in beautiful conviction as the Holy Spirit spoke to me: “I understand that when something comes into your mind, you shut out all else and run full steam ahead with that determined thought,” He told me. “I hope to present various options for you to consider before making decisions; but My words are useless to you until you listen to Me. I'm not presenting thoughts to fix your circumstances necessarily; I am presenting ideas to help your way.”

Bring every thought into the captivity of Christ, lest I be brought under captivity of my thoughts. Every thought. Should I be obsessed with Christ, as He is obsessed with me, then my mind move for only one thought above all else: listen for His voice. Speak Lord, Your servant is listening. 

Enjoy Him, Michelle

Sunday, July 15, 2012


He leaned against Jesus...John 13:25a

The music was pounding. The Spirit was rushing. Worship was beginning to flow from our hearts to His. Unexpectedly, I was pulled to the side of my friend to pray. I was angled just close enough to hear the racing heart. Prayer in symphony with the human heart. Worship at its height! I began to realize the incredible moment in God. Overwhelming was the sound; rushing waters of praise was our surround.

Then Jesus spoke through the racing rhythms: “Only I can hear your heart.” Washing over me was the thought: No one can hear my heart. Even I can't hear my own heart. In fact, I generally live in forgetfulness of my heart's existence. Jesus, however, hears every symphonic motion of precious blood pumping through every moment. Jesus hears what I cannot. Jesus alone. This is God's greatest act of intimacy, to draw in close and hear me. 

From physical to personal, this was far more than blood. This was love. This was completely consuming intimacy. He hears thoughts, dreams, fears, doubts, emotions, joys, hopes, sorrows – all that I generally live in forgetfulness of existence. He draws into me to love. He draws me into Him to live.

As He leans in to hear my heart, do I lean into hear His? Intimacy with Jesus is the intertwining of perfect love. Surrendering myself, my heart, my ambitions, my desires, my affections, my love to be drawn into Him and Him alone. Hear the heart as one. 

Enjoy Him, Michelle

Saturday, June 2, 2012


"I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.” -Philippians 4:12
Plenty: portion after portion after portion of  pasta!  As the server wrapped up my 2nd helping to go, I was beyond content and thankful; it just did not end with delicious delight! With my treasure in hand, I started for home. As I pulled up to the stop light, a familiar sight strolled by my window. A young man with a sign reading “homeless and hungry."

I never give money. I rarely have food. Tonight was quite the exception. I glanced down and noticed that not only do I have food, I have delicious, hot, expensive food. More than enough for two people to share. Impulsively, I handed my precious gift to the young man. With an almost stoic face, he said, “thank you,” took the meal, laid it down, and continued to walk the median with the sign. Instead of consuming his bounty, he kept on begging. As if what he was given wasn't enough to satisfy, even for the night.

His words were not his heart. His true heart was consumed by a different desire leaving the giver disturbed in his discontent. He hadn't even opened the box. He had no idea the abundant extravagance that was inside. “What was asked for was received. Cease striving. Consume satisfaction. Rest in grace.”

I have been given the most amazing, satisfying, delicious gift of life! Why do I take this incredible gift – more than I ever asked for – and lay it aside to continue begging for more? As long as I never consume the gift of love, grace, and peace of Christ – given to me personally from the LORD'S very hand to mine – then I will always beg for more; for more will never be enough. From my hunger to His hurt: how much the Giver of this extravagance must be horribly distraught by my dismissal of His favor and gifts.

Do I gaze upon His face and be filled or continue to gaze upon my brokenness and beg? “Lay down your desires by my Shepherd's staff and take up my Presence in this place. When you ask of Me, you receive of Me. Take and eat of Me, this is my brokenness given as satisfaction for you.” 

Enjoy Him, Michelle

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Fashion Faith

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. - Colossians 3:12

“I am moving and I need to clean out my closet. Would you come over and choose what you'd like to wear? It's all yours.” The answer was an easy yes! Who would say no to free clothes? Only until I actually began “shopping” did I see just how generous my friend's offer really was: beautiful, brand new, brand name threads moved from her hangers to my hands. I was also able to bring couple of single mothers to “shop” from this storehouse of overwhelming generosity! 

We had to accept the invitation, receive the gifts, and actually place the clothes on our shoulders to truly enjoy the extravagance of beauty on our lives. God gives us much greater and more beautiful gifts: compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Can you imagine if we could choose kindness along with the blue blouse and patience with the red blazer? That is exactly what we are called and commanded to do. We are given the King's Robes of Righteousness to adorn; why instead do we live in rags of grave clothes?

To live in and wear “compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience,” we have to realize that these coveted character coats are already in our possession as extravagant gifts from our King. We have to literally pull them from the closets of our hearts through prayer. We have to place them on our thoughts and behaviors, in thankfulness and joy, from our great Giver of Life.

He gives the gifts I desperately need with only one command to heed: “clothe yourself, child, from My generosity. It's all yours, dearly loved – come in awe and receive." What you wear is what you share; to the glory of the Beautiful King. 

Enjoy Him, Michelle

Saturday, April 14, 2012


Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall. Proverbs 16:18

April 14, 1912. Indestructible perfection was their security. Indescribable beauty was their reality. Whether to work or play, all 2228 passengers aboard the R.M.S. Titanic lived in absolute trust of their ship's ferry that day.

With grandeur and grace, she glided the ocean's waves. With only glory to gain and nothing to lose, the call came for perfection to press into more power. Nothing was foreseen to impede. Whatever might come into sight, the ship would simply navigate any obstacles and prevail with greater glory into history. History, as we know today, had a wheelhouse of it's own. Dreams are mapped out; it's the nightmares that surface from the darkest of deep.

It was the unseen that pierced perfection. It was pride that pronounced perish. The iceberg that brushed against the Titanic at 11:40pm on April 14,1912 was simply existing. Man and nature crossed paths as they always have and will. However, on this day, power turned from ally to enemy. By the time they saw the potential disaster, the ship's current speed made it impossible to fully navigate around the problem. “Unsinkable” collided with “unthinkable.” In the silent depths, the presumption of perfection met the reality of a ripped shell. Ripped lives. 
After 2 1/2 hours, the Titanic reached its final resting place on the ocean floor. Salvation's lifeboats were launched, but few were saved (710 of the 2228). She was designed to carry 32 lifeboats, but actually carried 20 lifeboats because it was felt that the extra 12 would make the deck too cluttered (on the largest ship on the planet), or in Management's words, “ would detract from the aesthetics.” Of those used, the lifeboats were only ½ filled (reasons ranged from families to fear). Of those boats, only one returned to the floating graveyard to search for survivors. Personnel were never properly trained for an emergency because they never imagined they would encounter one. Perfection precluded preparation. Every moment that death ensued, salvation drifted by only yards away. Though not all, so many more could have been saved. 

Each body that breathes air is a ship that ferries a soul. Disaster of death is certain. Though given first class accommodations in the beautiful image of Elohim, we are not indestructible, we are not perfect, we are not capable of saving ourselves. Yet, we are not without choice. We are offered a seat on the S.S. Grace (Savior's Salvation). Just as some proclaimed from the sinking ship's stern, some may declare today, “that seat of salvation is for someone else, not for me.” In reality, every soul has a seat waiting in salvation. Every person's eternity rest with every person's choice to receive or reject the grace given; having absolutely nothing to do with anyone else. Pride in some may declare that “I am just fine without salvation, disaster will not meet me” or if it does “I'll deal with that when I get there.” Yet, the ultimate reality is that all human attempts will never be enough to save a sinking ship; the only hope is external salvation. The Lifeboat must be accessible and occupied to be any good. 
Was pride worth the disaster of hundreds of lives lost? Is it worth the risk of losing your life over aesthetics, philosophy, or pride? Ladies and Gentlemen, this is an actual emergency and your very life is on the line. Your death is in pride. Your life is inside. You decide.

Enjoy Him, Michelle 

Tuesday, March 20, 2012


And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory. Ephesians 1:13-14

“Your bonus will be deposited into your account in ten to fourteen days," read the message across my screen. I was so excited! When the day of deposit finally arrived, I could hardly wait to check my account. Simply to behold the transition from a promise on paper to a reality of riches. All I had to do was..wait and receive. The rest moved into place. All without my creation, input or assistance; it just came to be.

I had only goal for this gracious gift: debt elimination. Fully. Finally. Immediately. And so it came to pass that all was paid. Just as expenses had eroded my account that was absent of income; this extraordinary, unearned gift not only destroyed the void, but overflowed in abundance to help others who were in need. Debt destruction is not so that I can spend, it's so I can share.

Grace: Fully receive and faithfully believe. My part is only to see the enormous, expensive debt of my heart, soul, mind, and life. Ask for and receive the deposit of forgiveness. Wait and watch as the debt disappears from my soul's account. Generously give grace from the overflow to those still in deficit of darkness. All for His glory is our freedom, for all who receive. 

Keep the account open to receive the influx of income to cover the daily debt. Keep the heart open to receive the Spirit to release from daily bondage of sin. Receive. Rejoice. Respond.

Enjoy Him, Michelle

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Glamour, Glory, and Grace

From Zion, perfect in beauty, God shines forth. Psalm 50:2

A visit to the salon is a rare and wonderful treat that I treasure! This night was especially so. I was invited by the owner of a luxurious downtown salon to “stop by sometime.”  I took him up on his offer. It was time.

I went in with the expectation of a simple cut. He arrived with the expectation of pure artistry. As a sculpture looks at stone, he looked at me for a few minutes, then proclaimed, “let's begin.” For the next 90 minutes, he cut, sculpted, and transformed me into a work of beauty as only he could. He asked, “So what are you doing after you leave here?” I said, "Oh, I was planning on enjoying a quiet night at home.” He simply said, "Oh," with slight smile to his voice. As if he knew otherwise.

After it was all over, I opened my eyes. Then dropped my jaw. Stunning. “What do I owe you?” I stammered. “Nothing,” he said. Nothing? I am given this very expensive treatment for nothing in return? “Just tell people about us,” he said. He knew that once I saw myself wrapped up in this gift, hiding at home was not happening. As if Cinderella was transformed by her fairy Godmother, only to return to her locked room to stare at her own beauty all night instead of enjoying her transformation with her prince. Beauty shines forth; but only if we step out to share it.

Such an extraordinary gift of grace I have been given by God. The grace that lavishly flows all over me, constantly, is greater than any outward beauty I can ever know. Jesus gives such perfect and transforming beauty out of the riches of His amazing grace, asking only that I still, soak in, and share. "My grace is a gift, the cost is mine; rejoice in the love. Just tell people about Me."
Enjoy Him, Michelle

Tuesday, January 31, 2012


In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God's grace. Ephesians 1:7

Black. I was walking to work when everything around me went absolutely black. No street. No people. No world. All of a sudden, it was as if nothing had ever existed. I stood completely still in the darkness. Somehow I knew, this was not a dream. This was as real as anything I had ever known. Dark beyond night. Cold beyond ice. Still beyond stone. I stood because everything in me obeyed the moment. No question, no thought, no decision. Simply obeyed.

To my right, as if it had been there all the time, was a light shining down on a roulette table. “How did I not see this before?” I thought. Before I could finish the thought I was sitting the chair at the table. Again, as if He had always been there but for some reason I had never noticed, the most loving and beautiful Man stood behind the wheel with a small, round, white stone in His right hand. The stone had markings on the side. I couldn't read the markings, I could hear them. They called to me. In the most intimate and loving voice, they called to the depths of my heart and life. Then He spoke with the same voice of love and intimacy over me.

“This stone is your life, wrapped in your true name. A name of intimacy that you can only know here in these moments.” He paused to let His voice soak into me fully. He spoke again, but this time conviction clearly laced His love. “When your life entered into this world,” He said releasing the stone ball onto the wheel, “you were born, all in, on black. You did not have a choice, or even a consciousness, that you were abiding in an abyss.” There I was. Every thought, every word, every move. My entire life was stacked up in the black. Leaning in on the wheel, I saw that the black was as the deepest, darkest, and most terrifying abyss of alone I had ever known. I was blinded and betrayed.

“All of your life, you believed that this was an existence of chance. Truth is, it's an eternity of choice. A choice to follow My call; to believe Me, to move from black to blood.” I leaned in to see the Red. True enough, it was the deepest, purest ocean of blood I had ever seen. The Blood was there all the time. For decades, I had been deceived that the only reality was what I saw, what I knew, what I reasoned. Deceived that these stories of a Savior where only tales told by an idiot who was after my money and mind. Deceived that there was no true dark and no One Light. Deceived that there was only me.

While the blood pulled me closer in, the chair pulled me further away. Back into the black. Away from the table. Away from the truth. Away from the Love. Away from the...LORD. The dark that enveloped me, strangely, was not the terror that screamed into my newly discovered soul. It was the sight of His Blood, never to cover me. It was the intimacy of His Love, never to captivate me. It was the glory of His face, never to consume me.

All in, from beginning to end. I lost to the highest cost: Blood. Red. Him. Me. Real.
Enjoy Him, Michelle