Posts tagged safe


Fearing people is a dangerous trap,

But to trust the LORD means safety.

Proverbs 29:25


Doesn’t it always come back to this?

To put my hand in His and let Him be the one to lead.

To trust His judgment.

And don’t we all struggle with just this?

This need to learn how to purposely choose to look at His face whenever I worry about what’s maybe right and what might be wrong?

To look to Him for approval instead of letting the approval of people be my guide?

Just a little while ago I was in Albania sitting across from a new friend, a woman being braver than most, willing to go against the grain that constrains the women there.

She told me about all those years when communism reigned and having nothing was normal— no beauty, no luxury, not enough food, not enough of anything.

And so women just cleaned. Because their homes were not pretty, they made sure they were clean. Cleaner than anyone else’s. Women mopped and shined and wiped meticulously, endlessly. And then they apologized for anything less than perfect and limited themselves, lest anyone see so much as a smudge.

And they’re still doing it now while working and buying and saving and educating and cooking the most delicious and time intensive meals I’d ever eaten.

And my friend has decided not to go along with that pressure. She won’t be defined by the hygienics of her shower.

She has stuff to do, important stuff. 

So she’s writing instead of scrubbing; children’s bible stories, a blog for young mothers, another for Albanian families, an online magazine. And she’s gathering women to study Scripture, to search for wisdom about raising their children in post-communist, still-atheist Albania.

Edi is my hero—she’s bold, she’s beautiful.

She’s safe.

And Edi has mastered something I’m just beginning to learn— that to fear God we women must deliberately ignore the disapproval of our sisters and mothers and magazines and friends.

We must choose instead to think long and hard, to ponder all alone just what it is that the LORD is asking of us.

To wear the clothes that fit, and toss out those wishful thinking styles that bind our souls too tight.

But how? Other than letting ourselves get all hard and cold and defiant, how in the world can we act on this?

Here’s my list for me…

  1. To not try to do it all.
  2. To tell the truth.
  3. To be satisfied with who we are and then be free to enjoy our sisters who aren’t like us at all.
  4. To do what only I can do and not try to do more.
  5. To smile and have fun and hole up in quiet corners all by myself just because I crave that.
  6. To wear glitter when grey is more the style.

I am learning… slowly. And so are you. We’ll get this eventually.

From my heart,


Isaiah 51:7… so much wisdom

repost from Nov. 2012 


Make Her Feel Safe

Dear Matthew,

I woke up this morning feeling safe.

Pushing back the thick down comforter, I slipped out of bed while your dad slept soundly. Jackson led me excitedly to the laundry room as he does every morning, where I filled his bowl with 2 scoops of dog food, which he wolfed down as if he was afraid he might starve. I get the impression that he’s just not sure if I’ll remember to feed him one of these days and so he starts off every morning on a mission to remind me. Just in case.

And I think I used to be just like our dog.

Unsure that anyone would love me enough to take care of me every day.

Always. No matter what.

Would this be the day when Phil would stop loving me?

Would he be too busy to care today?

Too distracted to remember my presence?

Too enamored with all that the world outside our little home offers to notice me?

And so I’d wake up every morning asking those same questions, just a little fearful, hesitant. Watching to see if what I feared would come true. Feeling that maybe I needed to remind him that I’m hungry for his love, for assurance, for that pat on the back.

And every day for 35 years your dad has just loved me. Again. Until I finally feel safe and secure and sure that yes, today he’ll still love me. No matter what.

Matthew, I want you to understand that every woman, in her own way, enters every relationship feeling just a little unsafe… and that she’s looking to you with just a hint of fear behind her eyes… and that you can either fuel those fears or choose to go on a mission to make her know she's safe with you. No matter what.

And so, my dear son, in case you’ve missed the clues while growing up in this home where love has made your mama feel safe, I’d like to make another list.

This is how your dad did it:

  1. He tells me he loves me. Over and over and over again. Using words. Lots of words.
  2. He is affectionate with me. Ruffles my hair, holds my hand, sits close.
  3. He looks at me when I talk. Not over my shoulder or out the window- at me.
  4. He stays aware of me, choosing to see my beauty and look away from other women.
  5. He lets me be who I am, never hinting that if only I’d do more or be different he’d love me better.
  6. He never yells at me— ever.
  7. He prays with me whenever he senses that fear again.
  8. He seeks out my advice.
  9. He guards me from bad guys- locking the door, looking around, letting me know that he’s on it.
  10. He pays the bills. On time. Every time.
  11. He goes to work. Every day.
  12. Sometimes he empties the dishwasher…

I could write a whole letter on each of these dozen ways your dad has chased my fears away. There are stories and reasons and Scripture and so much more to say about making a woman feel safe.

This is how a man loves a woman, Matthew. Every day. For a lifetime. Starting now.

I love you!