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“So how do we get to a place of living out our identity every day of our lives? How do we shake off the cages and the expectations and rhythms of operating and truly wake up?”

Jess Connolly from Wild and Free

~by Jess Connolly and Hayley Morgan

We took a whirlwind trip up and around curvy roads, delivered a Mother’s Day gift to my Mom. Collected hugs, Galax leaves. Spent time with family.

What is it about a Mama’s hug that can make a grown up woman melt and puddle into a little girl again? Clinging with need.

If I have learned anything by life interrupted, it is that circumstances can and often change in the blink of an eye. It was worth every pound of pain traveling brings to have the gift of sweet time with family.

I stumbled through Sunday; my own Mother’s Day, Sunday School, corporate worship, and a long nap. Languished in my “Sabbath Monday.”

My practice of taking Sabbath Monday carried over through Tuesday. Again on Wednesday. Disengaged from the clutter and noise of the outside world, I rested in my chair, held the gift of words in my lap.

IMG_2359Books and words are my love language. Reading, a large part of my quieter way of life.

From January to May, I have read thirty~eight books, pages shy of completing thirty~nine and forty.

I underline, highlight, record quotes, fold pages over, and occasionally, I am affected in a visceral way.

This one. This one, I have held in my hands a full week now, unable to let it go. Turning the pages ever so slow. Reading. Rereading. It is a mirror into my soul.

I have been that woman searching for freedom. Freedom from laws, rules and regulations. Thou shalt nots. Guilt. Regret. The past. Desperately seeking escape from the cage of expectations. Most of which, were my own.

I sat uptight in pew, a pias attitude, twisted heart, and pearls. A check off list, a marked up Bible, a smile pasted on my face. Not one tiny whit of living in His Grace, nor, extending grace. A worn out perfectionist, worn thin with striving.

Oh, I was living right, alright. Trouble with just living right;  when your world crumbles, so do you. 

Like Jonah, hurled onto the sand from the belly of a whale, I fell into Grace. Cleaned up with mercy and forgiveness.

Most days, here in the Wilderness Place, I can honestly say I live wild and free in the arms of Jesus.

Other days, like the alcoholic craving the cold drink, I can easily fall back to those ways. It’s a work in progress. Recovery is slow.

I don’t know your season of life. Whether you are living Wild and Free fully in His grace or living caged in expectations, I urge you to read this book. You’ll need a highlighter or two. ~smile~ And His Word close by.

Happy reading!

Gifts of Grace

Tammy Mashburn

NOTE: This is not a book review nor an endorsement, simply a book I love that touched me in a  personal way. I think you’ll love it too.

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