Not Unredeemed

… living the beautiful tension between what is, and what will be …


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In Deep

The room wasn’t small by any means, but it felt too tiny to contain the depths and the grandness of everyone’s stories as they shared. Each story had it’s own unique font and cover, but the current page in every story read the same. They wanted to be known.

From the depths of who we are, we each carry a deep desire to be known and to be understood. And as much as we like to think we are okay on our own, the desire to be known stems from the heart of the Father’s plan for us. It’s in knowing and being known that we can first taste the freedom of being unconditionally loved.

In 2010 I first tasted the freedom of being known and loved while I lived and study with 40+ other students at Focus on the Family. When you live, sleep, study, and worship for months in close quarters with others, it quickly becomes impossible to hide your mess. They see it all – your pain, your sin and ugliness, your beauty and your potential. When my blots and smudges were known and read by others I discovered something radical: I was STILL loved. When they knew it all and then chose to still love me in spite of what they knew; it became a powerful force that launched me towards freedom. That experience wrote some of the most transformative pages in my story.

In DeepThis October for a ’31 days’ series, I invite you to read a few pages of my story as I journey in deep with community again. This year has held a lot of changes for me both personally and professionally, and in September I joined a different team and ministry. I’m now living a dream of mine that was birthed five years ago at Focus – to be an RA at some type of leadership school or ministry. I’m officially called the Cultural Coordinator for a Discipleship House of young adults – but what I really get to do is to love, teach, and walk with nine beautiful students through life. Helping create a safe place to know and be known.

These incredible friends have chosen to say ‘yes’ to each other and to grow in deeper with the Lord for the next nine months. The honor is mine to go in deep with their stories and learn alongside of them.

This series will be varied and flexible – some days it might be funny stories that always spring from living with your best friends, or it could be something the Lord is showing me in my own story. Community living is like your church small group – only you live with them and commit to working out your differences with them. When you live together – it’s much harder to pretend there isn’t a problem. But it’s also a lot more fun because you don’t have to say goodbye each week.

And so I invite you to read along for the next 31 days and take a peek into my story, and perhaps the stories of a few others.

A traditional Jewish saying highlights the connection between God and storytelling by saying, “God created human beings because He loves stories.” Perhaps the opposite could also be said. “God created stories because He loves human beings.” As quoted in “Girl Meets Change”

I leave you with one thought:

How would your life or perspective be different if you believed the Lord loved (even LIKED) your story and the one He is writing with you? Even the ‘in deep’ parts?


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How You Learn It -31 Days of Truth {Day 26}

A 67!! My heart sank as my stomach rose into my throat and they crashed into each other, making me want to hurl as I ran out of the student center. A 67 on my Family, Church and Society mid term?! How could this be? I was a 4.0 student back home! I knew Focus Leadership Institute was going to be more difficult academically, but this was ridiculous. I was beyond mortified!

To read the rest of the story please visit me over at YLCF, as I share one of the many life changing experiences I had at FLI.

One of the greatest lessons I learned at Focus Leadership Institute was how to learn. How to learn, and what to learn.  FLI is a semester “abroad” type of program. It’s a fully accredited school that takes students for one semester. It combines the beauty of community, the academic level of a university, the hands on application (internship) of a vocational school, and the Christ centered leadership development  classes of a Bible school. It’s the best of all worlds.

I grew up in a very strong Christian home, but my time at Focus was the broader foundation I needed. Marriage and family, worldview, and identity and leadership classes gave me a foundation that I have grown and built on every day since. To say it was a life changing semester for me doesn’t do it justice. I learned how to identify my passions, and live them out. FLI is a lot about self discovery. Not in a weird  “it’s all about me” way, but it’s about learning who you are, so the Lord  can use you most effectively in the Kingdom. The Marriage and Family class will revolutionize every relationship that you have for the better. Communication and conflict resolution styles – the list goes on! The Lord also uses the classes, professors and community to bring about a tremendous amount of healing in the students (or at least the from my class!).

Listen as we share what the semester meant to us:  Continue reading


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31 Days of Truth – Witnessed in Everyday Life

“What is truth?” Pilot retorted to Jesus in John 18:38. What is truth? It’s question that has echoed through the ages, and must be answered by every person. Two years ago this fall I had the opportunity of studying at Focus on the Family, where one of my favorite paintings hangs. It’s a painting of Pilot asking “What is truth?” The study of Jesus’ answer radically changed my life.

“You say that I am a king. For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world—to bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice.” John 18:37

Jesus Christ came to bear witness to the truth. As Christians (literally meaning little Christ’s) we are to be like little Christ’s – imitating Him in bearing witness to the truth.

For the next 31 days (the month of October) by His grace I will be blogging daily, trying to bear witness to the Truth in my everyday life. Truth is all around us – we just often fail to recognize it. I want to learn to see, recognize, and realize more truth in my life. Would you like to join me in this journey of learning to see Truth?

So – what is truth? We will take a quick look at that tomorrow so we will know what we are looking for!

Follow along by finding Notunredeemed on Facebook or by subscribing via email, located on the side bar.

31 Days series originated with the Nesting Place blog, check out the link up for more 31 Days series!  Or if you are a writer consider joining the fun?