Thursday, March 1, 2012


our journey to grace

my daddy was a preacher.
fired up. sometimes, spit flew as he
was talking about the wiles of the devil.
he would hold his Bible up, and pace,
back and forth on the platform. He
would tell the congregation there was NOTHING
to fear or doubt or lose hope ever because the
Lord would always be taking care of it all.

we had family devotions every morning and
night. it was an absolute that we all kneel,
and that my father would always do the
praying. always. always. as if God wouldn't
hear one of us. and His prayers went on and
on and on. my mother, who was a concert
pianist. . . and so laid back. . . somehow believed
herself that we would all only make it to Heaven
because of daddy.

my father would always write, in his check book,
"to my dear Heavenly Father" for each tithe payment.
He loved Jesus and was devoted to his "flock".
we would be having dinner, and someone would call
with a need, and my father would listen and counsel and
weep as he prayed with them. on the phone in the
kitchen while we ate and listened and observed.

in his prayers, my father would always pray to be
removed from every atom of sin and self. i never
knew what that was really. . . but it was major to my
father. and he just couldn't, until a few years before
he died, accept that his son, fred, was a rebel and
prodigal. that is where my co-dependency started.
five years old, and it became an all-out mission to
make my father happy.

my beautiful mother was the one we ran to if my
father chastised us and told us that our arguing
made God sad. God. . . sad??? that scared jan
and me, and my mother would console us by saying
that she wanted to scream many times, and God understood.
that He never demanded perfection. we could keep going
with that. comforted.

that was jan's and my genesis. but, even now, i don't
think there is a day that i don't sin in thought or deed.
a thought of pride. an argument with jan over the phone when it
was nothing. andn i should have kept my mouth shut.
and let it be. just let it be. she means more than life to me.
just like my four children. i talk when i should be silent.

living really isn't about perfection. only about wholeness.
at celebrate recovery, i go to the room for co-dependents.
i'm a recovering pill addict, but i need women with substance
who can lay their sins on the table beside mine. i don't want
to push down a secret. keep it hidden. and i'm still afraid
to tell certain people in my life what i really feel. i end up
choosing to go along with their plans, and letting mine scatter.
down the hills. into the rivers. lost. gone.

always remember grace.
God's magnificent way of really knowing us
deep down, and showing us mercy when we don't
deserve it. it's such a beautiful thought that i can
taste the goodness of it. sweet to my lips. warmth to
my bones.

late again. reading all your thoughts.
longing for goodness in each of
your lives. chew, and swallow. . . the treasure
of grace. accept it for yourselves. i am always
trying to do the same. to always remember. . .
God is merciful.

8 comments:

Carla said...

Ann,
I so relate to your blog.
I think all of us women want to please the men in our lives, whether it is our husband, dad, or boss. It's easy to become obsessed with this desire to please and forget Whom we are really pleasing.
Until we focus, not on pleasing others and God, but realized that we are pleasing to Him just because He made us, we won't find true satisfaction in who we are and what we were created to be.

RobMoritz said...

We love you Ann!

maggie said...

Ann,
Have you considered self-publishing
your book? I would pay comparable rates for your e-book.
Glad you have this comment section available for those of us who have left,(or never wanted),FB.
Godspeed

Anonymous said...

Ann,

Thank you for your beautiful blogs. So great to hear from you!!! Keep them coming.

We need the encouragement!

Love, Debbie :)

barb said...

"living really isn't about perfection. only about wholeness."

Yeah, and thank heaven for the God transformations in the process of the journey, even when it's not easy.

"but i need women with substance
who can lay their sins on the table beside mine. i don't want
to push down a secret. keep it hidden."

A REAL gift when God places those people in our life.

"and i'm still afraid to tell certain people in my life what i really feel. i end up
choosing to go along with their plans, and letting mine scatter.
down the hills. into the rivers. lost. gone."

I bet A LOT of people relate to this... I do.

"always remember grace.
God's magnificent way of really knowing us
deep down, and showing us mercy when we don't
deserve it. it's such a beautiful thought that i can
taste the goodness of it. sweet to my lips. warmth to
my bones."

Soooo many things a gift from God and often my vision is skewed. Thanks for your craftmanship in writing and giving me an alignment.
Yes, I want to chew, and swallow... the treasure of grace.
Peace to you Ann.

Myles said...

oh ann, i'm struggling too, somex's harder than at other times, i remember i was a child of perhaps 12, the christian missionaries (which i later learned they were) who were the friends of our family & of many others in our Northern Canada village, shared Jesus & it was through them that my world came to include God/JESUS/someone to whom to cry out to, in troubled x's, in fear, hopelessness, confusion. I was/am so grateful, i don't know if there had been any other way for me to have found Him. I love JESUS, i am a xtian. Right now i'm struggling with lots of issues:sexuality, not connecting with God more, haven't read my bible lately though it feels like i have to...I'm glad to read your blog, it reminds me of when i listened to the tapes lois played or i read your books as a very young person & felt the love of Jesus reaching out to me.

Anonymous said...

Hi Ann,
Last week, on the radio Pastor Skip in Albuquerque mentioned your name and quoted one of your phrases-something about “faith is like jumping out of a plane without a parachute and believing Jesus is there to catch us.” Your words are still ministering to others. I pray for you and Jan! Thank you both for being transparent. We are not home yet, but while we are here, keep running the race for our Lord. HE is worth it.

CrystalRose said...

Hi Ann, I love everything about ur writing. Ur books have helped me so much over the years. I belong to a 12 step program called debtors anonymous. It has helped me so much with my finances over the years. Its not just for debtors. It's for anyone who has issues with money. Do u have that program in ur area? It came to mind as I was catching up on ur blog. If ur ever going to be in the orange county ca area please let me know. We can go to a meeting together. I haven't been to one for awhile and I would love to go with u. U r such a wonderful mother Ann. I love how u love ur children. I can see why they love u so much. U listen without judgement. U let them be who they r. U pray for them. What a blessing u r. I would love to meet u. Will u b speaking in my area at all or visiting? Love crystal