Surprise is Critical

“What kind of Love is writing my story till the end with Mercy’s pen? Only You.”  Natalie Grant, Alive

A guest to the blog: Live Write Thrive, Nina Schuyler, states: “Research shows when someone is surprised, dopamine increases and emotions intensify up to 400 percent. Heightened attention ensues, and so does extreme curiosity, in an attempt to figure out what is happening during the surprise. Surprise also causes a shift – it forces a change in perspective. Your reader is hyper alert, curious, in the moment, a perfect state to tell the unexpected emotion and have the reader feel it.”

As I read this, suddenly, a surprise – God does this with us, as He continues to write our story!

We call it a Revelation or Epiphany!

“We live our lives as a tale that is told” Ps 90:9b

In the process of our life, God is writing new things into our life daily.  He tucks in the A-HA truth revealed, the hit-the-breaks WOW seconds, the surprises of life – where we stop… suspended in a moment…, but completely alert, curious, surprised, emotions intensified… just a split-second of time and our (possibly lifelong) perspective shifts. Now we see – what we couldn’t/didn’t see before.

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You Sank My Battleship – Calendar Version

In this game, your opponent strategically picks spots where they believe you have placed your battleships. Each correct guess lands a bomb on the battleship. The goal – to destroy all of the ships in your fleet.


Occasionally and undoubtedly, at some point there are days when every person we know will pick the exact same day to invite us to something. These days typically also include other things like doctors’ appointments, work appointments, car appointments, etc.. We have all been there, right?!

I think of it as “You Sank My Battleship”. When your schedule gets “bombed” at the exact same spot/same day, it is a prime setup to run you ragged, splinter time with your spouse and kids, and land bombs on your emotions of regret, feelings of defeat and inadequacy, and even fear.

However, unlike the game where you cannot move your fleet, in life you can reposition yourself. This sounds easy, right?! So, why are so many people stuck; having a hard time with this?

For me, the reason was the Fear of Rejection. (People pleasing being associated/included with that fear.) The fear of people being mad at me, the fear they will not understand, and the compulsion to keep everyone happy so I just over-extend myself to the max. Been there, done that, got the T-shirt.

Epiphany moment last week, one truth hit me – my love and acceptance in Jesus is solid, because the Cross cannot change! His love and acceptance of you was part of Jesus going toward the Cross. He didn’t die for a person He was wishy-washy about loving and accepting. Right? His Love and Acceptance of YOU was firm in His heart and mind as He walked to the fate of the Cross, was nailed on it, and died on it. The Cross is firm ground to stand-on for those of us who are shaky in feeling loved and accepted.

There is no doubt in Him, about YOU! The only doubts in play are ours, but we can cast that down and take up this truth. So that, at the root of the fear we will be rejected, not loved, not wanted, left behind, we can confidently stand at that place of ultimate love and acceptance in Jesus.

When the bombs hit your schedule – you are loved and accepted – even in not being able “to do everything”. The Cross took away that “hook” we put ourselves on. Choose loved ones first, spread-out the other appointments (take a deep breath at the space this leaves), and walk secure in your infinite worth to God.

Proclaiming – Isaiah 12 (amp)



“Behold, God, my salvation!”

In that day, I was bound and chained. Unable to see differently, think differently, act differently…stuck in pit with no hope. In that day, I couldn’t see what I couldn’t see. Blind to the bondage and to the degree of it.

“Sing praises to the Lord!”

In that day, He was doing excellent things, gloriously! He was my strength and my song through the pain. He was my company behind the walls. He was my trust and confidence to keep pushing forward. He was my salvation with the impossible!

In this day…

I say of the Lord, thank you, thank you, thank you! It is by Your Name, I make known Your deeds to set this captive free, to open my blinded eyes, to make this lame girl walk in wholeness…

You in my midst, Holy One, is my victory and my delight! It is by Your Name, I cry aloud and shout for joy to make known Your greatness to all the earth. You are my salvation! You are my comfort! I proclaim Your Name exalted, Jesus!

Notes from the war…

The war is on, the fighting rages

will I or won’t I?

I have to choose to obey You

pressure, ridicule, condemnation, guilt

I still can’t seem to choose You, “strengthen me, Lord! ”

no help for the flesh to win

“Lord, I need you!”

get up, fail, get up, fail… weary and tired from trying

From my foxhole I cry:  “Grace me, Jesus, to do what I can’t.”

a hush falls on the battlefield, something just happened

all eyes shift to see

He’s now fighting, not me


(This is not a quote or an excerpt from the book. It is truth I came away with and truth of Jesus to share. Book reference: The Nature of Freedom, by Graham Cooke)

Golden Nugget

to abide

to die

= commitment

Abiding is not a limited time offer – it is to continue in a place, to not leave a person. Existing with a person.

  • It takes commitment to abide in a place, abide with a person. It takes commitment to die to self, to die for someone and live for someone.
    •  Father God’s commitment to us and our whole life, is established forever in the Blood of Jesus.
    • Jesus’ commitment to us and our whole life, is forever established by His Blood.


Golden Nugget

In times of our greatest failures/defeats, struggles, issues, confusion and lie filled thoughts swirling, hear and know this:

  • God is the one holding you, and He isn’t going to let go.

Talk it out with Him, be real with Him, tell Him everything. Somehow/someway – He’s got this!

New Year’s 2016

“We live our lives as a tale that is told” Ps 90:9b

“What kind of Love is writing my story till the end with Mercy’s pen? Only You.”  Natalie Grant, Alive

new year

Somehow God’s pen weaves and blends and enlivens our tiny lives with His heavenly plan and purposes and light. The tales that will be told of us will be many and varied. Some sad, some happy… As we live, our story unfolds and we face opportunities to participate, asking for greater adventures from the Writer. The ride we are on is one our human minds cannot fathom. The next chapter, always a mystery.

Going into the New Year, let us ascribe to Him the Love of a Heavenly Father watching over his child and Honor Him – Faithful Writer of our stories.

New Year’s 2016 – Father, Writer of my tales, You have made me alive to life in 2015. For 2016, I pray for hearts desires, grander adventures, and even deeper joys.

(picture found in Goggle search: rights free to use and share)