Writing As An Act of Faith

How is writing an act of faith? If we have a spiritual landscape or backdrop to our life then isn't writing an effort to make sense of our earthly sojourn? What better way than with words, sentences, paragraphs, and stories. 

As of late, I've wondered about writing as a consecrated effort or act of "gathering light." So much of what we do in the world rubs against the gray shades of the world, and yet, we keep seeking and searching for light to carry us through the darkness. Rather than looking for light, what if our words became the gathered light as we become an extension of Jesus Christ. 

Light comes in small shafts and fragments, but it also comes in streams and waves. When we write, there are ways to bring understanding and light to experiences that we're still trying to make sense of. 

Here's an idea to take your writing to a deeper level of application and analysis: 

  1. Today, try carrying a pen and paper to record the manifestations of God's love for you. Can you gather light as you look for His love? 

  2. At the end of the day, record the moments where you were given new understanding, new light, new ways of seeing something that deepened your discipleship of Jesus Christ? 

Writing and faith---two words that deserve some exploration from every individual who is a believer in Jesus Christ and in His light, particularly as we carry it within us. 




What is saving your life right now?

In class this week, I asked my students what I could do to help them get to the core of their voice, their ideas, and their lives. She spoke from the back row with soft conviction, "More writing in class. More words. More paragraphs. More getting it out on the page." I stopped everything, closed my eyes, and begged heaven for words to reciprocate her way. 

Take out a piece of paper. 

 "What is saving your life right now? And, how will the value you are researching save you, someone else, and the world around you?"

What is saving your life right now?  The question always brings words, right up my throat, until I have to write. Until the only thing I can do is release the words. Spilling everywhere. More words. More paragraphs. 

Gather it all up in your palms and write. 

This is what is saving my life right now........

Movie popcorn. Articles with teeth, which is another word for "meaning that resonates." Words with internal rhyme. Sunlight in clouds. Spiritual in darkness and weakness. The feel of winter fur, her coat, relieving my stress, science tells me. Dogs are good for girls. Light from night lamps, illuminating this family of five. Always,  her chocolate chip cookies. The music a daughter places in front of me. A CD. French folk song by cello, her peace offering. The sound of a voice from South Africa in the palm of my hand, deep in my heart. Deep breaths after shallow breaths. Prayer. Prayers with Willa, where words run cool through my veins, bringing new hope. Hearing voices that sustain me, my heart, my ideas. my life. Grace. Grace. Grace again, again, and again. Walks and words from heaven with friends in between steps. One after the other. 

Trails. Moving forward and upward with inward momentum.  Moving forward on trails and feeling God's eternal love, even when there's wind. Playing a song over and over and over because it heals and inspires. Talking about belief around the kitchen table, where I teach them how to be good women, how to be human. A mother still on earth. Still teaching, still needed. Rescue. Those who I rescue and those who rescue me. Knowing this life is like ball of yarn, unraveling at its own speed, in the soft cradle of my hands. Letting go of things more easily so  I can hold on to things that matter. Things that matter. Things that matter to me. Things that matter to heaven. 

Every day, the list of what saves me changes.

Some sentences continue. Some sentences are written over and over, but with more emphasis. And some words just become a part of who I am and who I'm meant to become. 

What is saving your life? 

Listening to your life is about asking for more words. More paragraphs. More getting it on the page. 

"Listening To Your Life" ---Writing As A Retreat

I recently attended a women's retreat where we gathered to eat scrumptious food and review a book about "not trying to fix everything."  I was asked to share some insights about how writing and journaling offer me spiritual strength and guidance.  I shared the principles behind the journal, and then, the best part  for me, was watching these women write  in their journals using imagery and language. I can't imagine anything more powerful than a group of righteous women writing! 

For me, writing is my retreat from the world. It's where I go to look beyond the surface of the day and go underground, within the chambers of my heart, to find out what's really there.

As with most writing, my journals serve several purposes. Most of the pages consist of anything connecting me to myself (my heart and mind), to other human beings, and most of all, it holds thoughts connecting me to heaven.  The pages hold ordinary and epic days, the breadcrumbs from my mind and heart. "Here's what I was thinking about at this particular time of my life...." Very rarely will you see a simple reporting of the day's events. Rather, I place a narrowed lens down on the things that enlighten me, inspire me, and the ideas and words that make my life work. If I do write about the day, it's usually about how I find the "spiritual" in the mix of minutes and hours.  

My words to the women attending this retreat were simple: 

It's not about the journal.

It's about "Listening to Your Life---and Finding Inspiring Ways to Live and Build A Spiritual Life." 

Where do you go to find spiritual retreat? Spiritual meaning a connection with heaven or a higher power, but also a place where you have an inner peace, inner-connectedness, self-awareness, mindfulness, and an inner dimension. 

Retreat. Don't you just love the sound of this word? 



  • A place providing shelter or security; a refuge
  • A quiet or secluded dwelling or residence
  • The action of going to a place of safety
  • A place providing privacy or seclusion for the purpose of study or prayer, meditation, rest, or relaxation

In thinking about what retreat means to me,  it's not just places, but also people. Who are the people in my life who bring me retreat? Where do I go to feel spiritual retreat from the world? How do I remember my roots and lineage as a daughter of God? 

"We are not human beings having a spiritual experience;

we are spiritual beings having a human experience."

--Pierre Teilhard de Chardin. 

Here's something to ponder: 

How often do you retreat from the world to remember your authentic self and the talents and gifts you've been given? Are you too busy looking at someone else's brand to consider building your own Spiritual brand? 

Here are some questions to generate your writing and pondering: 

  • Where do you go for spiritual retreat?

  • Who offers you retreat? 

  • What do you need to step away from so you can retreat and dwell in study, prayer, and meditation?

  • Can you begin to look at your ordinary days with a spiritual lens so "retreat" happens more than once in a blue moon? 


It's time to stop living on the surface of your beautiful life. 

Make your life a study.

Dig in. Get to work. 

Writing is retreat! 


The Things We Carry

There is a classic short story about war by Tim o' Brien called "The Things They Carried" which captures the rhythms of war and the responsibility of each human by the certain things they carry to move the battle forward. The short story is nice, but the title holds fascination, simply because the question is one I ask myself weekly, sometimes almost daily. 

What am I carrying? 

What do my hands and arms carry, building and creating?

Am I being USED to build the kingdom by the things I carry? 

Do the things I carry weigh me down or lift me up, filling me with buoyancy and grace? 

And, what of my heart?  What rhythms, wonder, and wisdom does my heart carry? 

I'm a big fan of artist Minerva Teichert. She was independent, filled with voice, and gave a full offering with her time, gifts, and talents. 

Pioneers Arriving is one of my favorites. I mean, look at the posture of this pioneer woman! Look at the beauty of her colored carpet bag, gripped with such guts and grace!

The woman in the painting holds a special place in my heart, as well as on the front cover of my current journal. 

Minerva Teichart Pioneers Arriving 

The first time I saw this woman and her beautiful carpet bag, I wondered---what is she carrying in that bag?

Soft jingling silver spoons. 

Words on paper in swirling handwriting. 

Pictures reminding her of those who traveled before her, giving her strength for her own steps. 

Pieces from the landscape she left behind. 

But the longer I look at the woman and her bag, the less it matters that I know what she is carrying. The strength shows in her face. 

Look at the vibrancy Teichart gives this bag. Bright. Authentic. Beautiful. Perhaps symbolic of this woman's steps, life, and heart. 

Can you imagine this woman's bandwidth? Her elegance? Her strength? 

And here in this painting, she arrives. 

As women who believe in Christ, disciples who are walking the earth at this time, we're asked to carry certain things to move the work of the kingdom forward. 

Recently, as I have walked, hiked, biked, and talked with dear women and young women, I stand in great reverence for the things they carry. 

Their bandwidth is bountiful. 

Their elegance comes from their steady stream of strength. 

What things are you carrying?

What is carrying you?

Are the things you're carrying the things YOU want to carry?

How much of what you're carrying belongs in someone else's hands and arms?

Do you claim what you're carrying with joy or burden?  

The answers to these questions will begin to knot the thread to YOUR story. 

Your story. 

Your guts. 

Your grace. 

Write it. Pray it. Ponder it. Share it. 

Give it 10 minutes of words on a page.

Remembering is not forgetting. 

Write it to remember. 





Study to be Quiet 1 Thessalonians 4:10-11

One of my July practices, notice how I'm not using the word goals,  is to slow down and pursue the small over the sensational. Small meaning not only simplifying and slowing down, but going small and finding out what's inside and within my soul.  

How often do we string thoughts into words, words into sentences, and sentences into a sacred place? Every day when we pray.

Here's another way we can do this---- there's a sort of spiritual spark that comes when we spiral inward to find what's REALLY there as we record pieces of the heart with words on paper. 

So July, come my way

with at least 10 minutes

of writing a day.


With practice comes INCREASE.  

"That ye increase more and more; and that ye study to be quiet, and do your own business, and to work with your own hands."   Thessalonians 4:10-11

Staying quiet. Calming the voices around us. Paying attention to what really matters to you. 

This 10 minutes belongs to YOU. Believe me---you'll increase. 

The creative process belongs to the individual soul---the heart and mind---in partnership with heaven, where it becomes a spiritual act worth living and working for.  What works for one, does not work for all.  Remember this! 

I guess what I've learned is this---The act of slowing down and marinating is a spiritual process. 

Write with me? 

Need a 1st-day writing prompt?

Set the timer for 10 minutes. Write everything that comes to mind when you hear the word:


When you're finished, polish the words and create a 25-word Hope statement to the world. 

Girls enrolled in the Abound Writing Workshop, start your engines! We're getting excited.  


Moving Forward With Heaven, and Passion

This is where we belong.

In front of a blank page.

It always starts with one word. 

Launching this blog and this idea of writing our spiritual stories has been a LONG LONG LONG time coming. Heaven has been pressing on me, nudging, inspiring, whispering, guiding, directing, and waiting patiently for my Stillness.

Heaven has been waiting for me to turn myself over. 

I am a study of contrasts. Like almost everyone breathing.

Responsibilities often anchor me, that are hardly ever mine to call my own, but I took a step. I've been taking steps towards this for years. Years. 

And finally, I took a BIG giant step into faith, and it took a ton of courage. Fear not and be of good courage runs thick through my veins every day. 

This blog isn't for me. These ideas are not mine. 

I am simply the gatherer. The sharer.  

Heaven explained this long ago. 

I won't post beautiful meals or pictures of glorious vacations. I will post words that make my life work, hoping you will spiral inward, reach down deep inside, and find your own words, your own voice, and begin to tell your story.

It's a sort of hastening, if you will. Can you feel the momentum of the Lord's work? Are you wondering what your part is?  It's your voice. It's your story. 

This blog is for those who need it. It's for those of you who hunger to know the words to your story and to know how  to find the words to tell your spiritual story. 

The world needs your voice. 

The world needs your story. 

Testimony belongs to story. But there are layers to testimony. There are layers to life. Contrasts. Shades. Hues. Designs. Study. Prayers. Beliefs. And it is the spiritual textures that make up a growing testimony. 

Finding your voice is a personal and spiritual journey requiring you look at your inner geography, the passions you hold, the questions beating within you, and gaining a knowledge of how to use the gifts and talents you've been given to make a difference, not worrying that you will make someone feel less than, rather, that you are doing your part in building a full offering.  

Remember the bushel. Remember the talents. Remember the parable. 

We are all given talents. Writing and searching to know what those gifts and talents are, and helping others to find their voice----that's my PASSION. 

passion photo.JPG

What's your passion?

Today, take 5 minutes to write 5 of your passions. Write it on a paper towel, a piece of scrap paper, write it in your heart. Write it in the shower. Write it in a letter. 

Step 1--Do something with your PASSION, today. Not tomorrow. Today. 

If your passion is raising your children, write 5 things that made you a passionate mother today.

If your passion is your home, write about what brings you peace. How do you find shelter while scrubbing your kitchen floor?  

If your passion is your church calling, what discoveries are you making along the way? 

If your passion is travel, write 5 things you deeply learned about yourself on your latest adventure. Don't just travel. Record the feelings, the reflections, the pondering you did in your heart. 

If your passion is unclear or unknown at this time---

  • Be patient, but start searching and seeking. 

  • Begin with the questions.

  • Begin with prayers and pondering. 

  • Ask for guidance to help you feel alive and at full capacity so that you can live with more fullness.

Years and years ago, Paul's words helped me find my PASSION in his letter to the Philippians:

"I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound, everywhere and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.

I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. "  

Philippians 4:12-13  

Choose to ABOUND.

Choose to overflow and to be filled with HIS strength. 

It will save your soul. 

Inspire Reach Abound

Be prepared to be Inspired.....

    As you reach deep within you.....

     And Abound!

Come join us for a week of spirituality, creativity, writing, recording, and remembering. 

Abound Writing workshop 

 We're crossing our fingers you leave overflowing and packed with fullness of Spirit! 

What are the words to your spiritual story?

Are you living true to your heavenly brand? 

Did you know that there is a connection between creativity and spirituality? 

I'm so excited to give big and share a week with Young Women in the community talking, writing, listening, recording, remembering, creating, and sharing our spiritual stories. 

Some of the fun topics we'll journey through include: 

  • What is Spiritual? What does the word mean to you? 
  • How to become more aware and mindful of your spiritual story 
  • How do you embrace Spirituality?
  • How can we seek the Spirit in our lives and better record and remember? 
  • We will exploring and discover methods for recording and remembering our stories
  • What questions do you have for heaven? 
  • Seeking Personal Revelation through the Power of Questions
  • What does it mean to be filled with Holiness? 
  • Psalms of fullness and gratitude "Live in Thanksgiving Daily" (Alma 34:38)  
  • Where are your Angels?  Poetry/Art Workshop
  • Finding the sacred in your busy hearts, schedules, and days
  • A Creative Writer's Tea (Friday--an Author's Tea for sharing and celebrating words) 
  • So much more.....

Come join me! My beautiful daughter, Lizzie Beth, will be helping me guide you through some wonderful revelatory spaces to help you navigate through your inner geography to tell your spiritual story for life. 

Come find your voice and find tons of ways to tell your story! 

Sign up now and we'll send you a preparation packet. 


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