Crazy for Communion

celebrate communion.png

“Brooke, guess what Dad and I get to do this morning!” I worked to gain my daughter’s interest on the way to church.

With her eyes cast downward and her thumbs tapping the cell phone screen, Brooke obliged me and answered without any attachment, “What Mom? ”

My excitement made me resilient to her hollow reply.  Instead of shutting down because of her aloofness, I pressed in determined to cue her curiosity.

Leaning forward, I reached my arm over the top of the front seat to where she was sitting.

Then, in an attempt to transmit my physical feeling of enthusiasm, I lightly pinched the tippy top of Brooke’s shoulder. I was hoping it felt more like a tickle touch, rather than being an uncomfortable sensation.

My strategy was successful! Brooke looked up and turned her head to the left, giving me her full attention. “We get to serve communion today!” I cheerfully revealed what I was looking forward to.

“Mom, you like doing that?” she quizzically asked.  “YEEESSSS, I love serving communion at church!”  I quickly responded.  I imagine my smile served as a second indication of my  positive emotion.

As Brooke squeezed her shoulders into her neck and narrowed her eyes at me, I could tell she was listening, but couldn’t anticipate what I might say. I quickly stepped into the opportunity to share and began by explaining that for me serving communion wasn’t a job, but rather it was a JOY!

“Mom, you are the only person I know that would get excited over serving communion.” Brooke stated, chalking my affirmative attitude towards sharing the Eucharist with others to my list of out-of-the-norm characteristics.

I chuckled, well aware that some of my actions and inner thoughts fall outside of the category of common.  However, my honesty vs. her opinion opened the door for discussion.

And, that is when I dove in deeper explaining to Brooke, in the words of Pastor Joseph Prince …

… Holy Communion is not a ritual to be observed, but a blessing to be received.  

“Brooke sharing a taste of The Holy Spirit, even if it is for a split second, even when  it is with a stranger is completely satisfying to me!”

I continued to retell of my experience sharing the Lord’s Supper with all those standing in line. “Brooke, men, women, married, single, young adults, adolescents and even two year old’s approach to share in the Lord’s Supper.  And, I get to be the person that pours a little bit of Jesus into them.” I went on to state my case.communion

Increasing the emphasis, I leaned forward and jutted my chin out. Then, I pinched my thumb and fore finger close to my nose so that Brooke would get the point I was trying to put into focus. “Understand, it is so much more than merely standing in front of folks and sharing wine with them.” I unwrapped the routine for her.

When I speak the words, “The blood of Christ shed for you.” to each person that passes by I get all giddy on the inside. I’m happy for the person that arises out of their seat and walks toward and accepts the blessings that are found when living  in close communion with Christ.” I outlined to Brooke, who much to my delight was now engaged in my story line.

“But more than that Brooke, I am bright eyed and bushy tailed and blessed beyond measure when given the opportunity to bestow the Good News of Jesus Christ onto another individual.” I shared the stirrings of my soul. “It is an incredible privilege to participate in another person’s walk with Christ. And, when they are receiving His blessings for themselves, it is an incredible party to be a part of !” I ended my passionate observation.

As David put our car in “park”, I began to accept that Brooke understood what I had to say. And, regardless of how strange I sounded, she was beginning to agree.

I  believe Holy Communion is the feast of the soul. a source of deepest joy for ourselves. So, if ever you are in the line where I get to serve, know that I am celebrating with you, for you and alongside you!!

Serve the LORD with joy. Come before him with a joyful shout!

Psalms 100:2

Dear Heavenly Father,

Thank you for the opportunity to serve others and to bring The Good News of your kingdom to those around us. For you have taught us by doing so, we in turn will be blessed. Thank you for allowing us to be in communion with you, for by doing so we are given the bread of life and washed clean of our sin through forgiveness. 



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And Yet …

Enjoy and allow the spirit of Christ to rest in you as you read this devotional written by my wonderful friend, Karen Rewerts. 


This morning, I was reading my devotional and I came across this verse:

“I will sing to the Lord, because He has dealt bountifully with me.” Ps. 13:6.

You know how much I LOVE music and singing, and I thought, “How beautiful!”

This was the King James translation, so I decided to look up the verse in my NIV Bible, and it said,

“I will sing the Lord’s praise for He has been good to me.”   

Isn’t that wonderful?!

As I re-read the verse, I realized this was the last verse in Psalm 13 and I thought, “This is a short Psalm.” So I decided to read it from the beginning and it starts with this:  “How long, Lord?  Will you forget me forever?  How long will You hide Your face from me?”


Who goes from “How long,” to “I will sing,” in six verses?

As you might guess, it was David and for four verses, he cries to God.  Not only that, he demands that God look at him and answer him. Then in verse five, he says, “But I trust in Your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in Your salvation.”  Then comes the beautiful verse 6.


David the shepherd boy.

David who killed Goliath.

David the King, chosen by God to lead Israel.

David of the lineage of Jesus.

David, the special man after God’s own heart.

YET…David was human.  David was not perfect and in fact, David did some downright horrible things. And David suffered.  He cried out to God.  He felt terribly alone.  He wrestled with his thoughts.  He was so sad.  David demanded relief from God.  Read Psalm 13 and you’ll see what I mean.

For all David went through, (and he didn’t even know Jesus,) he still chose to trust God.  He chose to rejoice.  And he chose to sing.  Whatever we deal with in this life – this beautiful, tragic, crazy, stressful, amazing experience – we can trust and rejoice and even sing because we know that God is faithful.  We know that God loves us.  We know that God has been good to us.  We know that God is worthy of our song.   And praise God, we have resurrection hope through Jesus Christ, our Lord.

Thanks for letting me share.

Karen, thank you for sharing!

Your lesson is livable and your writing is relateable. As well, your love of Christ is contagious! 

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Moving from Grief to Grace …

About a year ago, I met Susan B. Mead.

Susan B Mead

Quickly, I was captivated by her outgoing and gregarious personality.  Humor sparkled just about every sentence she spoke and a smile grew across her cheeks constantly!

We were gathered together, along with some other ladies for a work session and work we did do! Susan is smart and she was charged with and eagerly shared her professional experiences concerning writing, public speaking and internet blogging. I was all ears and leaned in to receive what she had to say.

Truly, I enjoyed our time of learning that had been laced with laughter!

Indeed, Susan provided a wealth of knowledge I needed.

As our session drew to a close I scooped up my notes, packed away my computer equipment and began to say my goodbyes.

And, that is when this organized exchange of ideas suddenly shifted to a time of inspiration and appreciation!

The last few minutes of time spent at the gathering allowed for more intimate conversations. The attendees mingled with one another and met on a more personal note.

It was then, I learned that Susan and I shared the same painful loss. For her, it was a beloved 21 year old son whose life was lost to a lethal combination of drugs and alcohol. In turn, I exposed the circumstances surrounding the loss of Samantha, my precious 12 year old daughter.

We agreed, the death of a child, regardless of how it happens just plain HURTS!!!!!!!

Thankfully our conversation didn’t end there. Instead, I poised myself as the learner and listener again, leaning in to receive what Susan had to say. She was further into the painstaking ping pong process of lamenting and living.  As well, I figured I could use a tip or two about how to go on.

No longer did her language focus on web page clicks and FB friends.

Instead, her previous instructive tone turned into exuberance as she sang the praises of her Savior, glorifying the God who had saved her from the dark depths of grief and despair!

Her testament was real! She spoke of anguish and heartache! But excitement and a sense of awe overcame her as  she extolled the saving grace and mercy she received from Jesus Christ.

I invite you to hear the same healing message as I did on that day!

Be blessed, allow yourself to be carried and let peace prevail as you read Susan B Mead’s devotional –

Moving From Grief to Grace

March 31, 2015

“He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” Psalm 147:3 (NIV)

Grief hits each one of us and can come from so many different directions.

A romantic relationship gone awry. The loss of a cherished friendship. A puppy put down. Empty arms and a broken heart due to abortion. Infertility. Abuse. The death of a loved one.

Dreams with a hope and future dashed in an instant. I know. I’ve lived it, too.

A phone call changed my hopes and future as Matt, my older son, wailed into the phone about my younger son, “Kyle died last night!”


– See more at:


Today, Susan’s high spirit and happy heart are offer hope and healing to all who are hurting! 

Thank you Gracious God for your everlasting promise to move us from grief to grace!

Enlightened thru Isometrics


“Now plie and hold, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8!”

“And, now pulse, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8!”

“And, again, plie 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8!”

“And, now pulse, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8!”

Finally, my Barre instructor called out “And, down, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8!”

All at once, I released my death grip from the ballet bar and went into full rest mode!

Sweaty, with my hip sockets searing in pain and my shoulders stuck in place I  wondered how in the world I had been influenced to attend such a difficult exercise class.

Yes, like so many Americans at the start of this New Year, I have committed to increase my exercise. However, I didn’t foresee that my current level of fitness would falter under a new set of circumstances. Honestly, this “Total Body Barre” class kicked my butt!

So much that the next day, I opted out of group exercise and decided to simply take a walk.

Physically, I was working, walking at a brisk pace trying my best to burn calories.

However, it was my mental work that would matter the most.

long-walks-editedFor quite awhile, I have used long walks to have great conversations with God, and this day was no different. As my feet pounded the pavement, I prayed for others and I prayed for myself.

Two miles into my walk as my muscles started to cry out because of the previous day’s challenge, I noticed my attitude changing from holy to hurting.

As a result of my achiness, I shot off a snippy question to my Savior, “God, if you are in everything and about everything, I sure would like to know what you have to say about that Total Body Barre class that kicked my butt!”

I chuckled and reigned in my testy temper, “Elizabeth, you are such a goofball, God doesn’t have an opinion or time for that!”

Totally aware we can approach God with any situation, but as ridiculous as my questions was I certainly didn’t expect an answer.

However, a few steps later, The Holy Spirit, the gift that God gives us so that our hearts and minds know Jesus Christ laced its teachings with my thoughts.

“Elizabeth, there are lots of truths that can shine through that exercise class, ” the Holy Spirit stirred inside of me.

“Really?” I silently replied.

“Yes, think about this!” the Spirit insisted.


… when you are holding the plie, I want you to realize there is strength in staying still!

… when you feel unbalanced, you can reach out and take hold of the rod for stability!

… remember concentrating on your “core”, the “center of who you are” is the most                     crucial. After that is strengthened , the other parts will fall into place.

… remember keeping the pain in perspective is important, trusting the burn will be                    followed by  blessings.

The longer I walked, the more I learned! The wider my stride, the more I was reminded.

There were other motions, the Spirit mentioned.

But, none of them where more wonderful than the revelation concerning the warm down!



Heading back home, I thought about our final pose, first position, elbows up, arms out and then we ended with a sweeping bow. The movement was beautiful and for a nano-second I felt like an authentic ballerina.With one elegant move my body was relieved.

And, that is when the Spirit remind me, “Elizabeth, it is all about grace, My grace. In all things, I AM the good. I AM God and my grace will get you to, through and lead you to triumph over everything!


Once again, similar to the conclusion of that grueling Barre class, I ended my exercise with an ah-ha moment. However, this time is was my spirit that was refreshed as opposed to my body being rejuvenated.

Guys, God is the good, His grace covers us in all things and because of His gracefulness towards us we can know victory and triumph over anything!

And, he can and will show up in the strangest places and spaces to teach us.

Honestly, who knew I could be so enlightened through isometrics!


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Community of Faith

Suicide is not a sadness I have been called upon to endure. I haven’t earned the stripes to say, “I understand” to the grieving parent, sibling or friend who has lost a loved one to this devastating cause of death. Nor, have I had a family member dabble with drugs to the extent it ended their life. I don’t know what it feels like to lose someone I love to these maddening modes of death. Associated with each of these saddening scenarios is a unique blend of emotional scars, unexpected life changes and demands different levels of forgiveness. However, because of my firsthand experience with a similar piercing pain, I offer my most heartfelt and sincere prayers of comfort to all peoples, especially those here in my hometown that are dealing with these caustic situations at present. May you be blessed by Heaven’s sweetest assurances.

This time, I watch from a ringside seat. Not directly involved in the disastrous set of circumstances. My stint of being in the brutal boxer’s ring has come and gone. Nevertheless, because of past happenings I am well aware of what follows after a crisis rocks the fiber of an otherwise peaceful community. Sitting from the security of my desk chair, I can sense the inner chaos coursing through all of us affected. Causing us to grasp for answers to the why’s and what-if’s. The pain that punctures the souls of citizens when we lose three of our students is obvious in every Facebook post and personal conversation.

The anxiety that creeps into the thought processes of all those that are aware are on display as we try to understand and get a handle on the harrow that drives a child to act out in such harmful ways. Everyone grasping for preventative measures so that our young people aren’t at risk to act on their overwhelming emotions with life altering actions or take a hit of some abusive substance to escape reality; or worse yet, as a wicked form of entertainment. A lack of physical involvement in the aftermath of tragedy doesn’t lessen the ache for those of us acting as bystanders. We grieve alongside you as we witness your outcry. We join you in your efforts to enlighten our children and uplift our neighborhoods. You might not be able to see us, but know we stand with you during these difficult times.

This topic of care and love that weaves its tender tentacles throughout our sleepy little town has tumbled in my heart for some time. For I was once comforted by my neighbors, fellow school moms, church family, close friends and concerned strangers. Acknowledging Community of Faith Blog 2my position of need wasn’t natural. We humans tend to shrink and turn inward when we hurt. Thinking to allow and accept help is a sign of weakness. Sometimes, vulnerability makes us uncomfortable and we don’t allow people in. Thankfully, many many persons pushed past my awkwardness and made their loving presence known. Not allowing me to embark on the lonely journey of recovering on my own. The channels of communication where varied; cards, letters, emails, tender comments, flowers on my front porch, an extra hug or a hot meal. Prayers, poems and spiritual support found their way to me when I couldn’t find comfort on my own. Memorials and remembrance services were setup, people took time out of their schedules to show up and offered their personal support. These healing messages and tokens of thoughtfulness expressed in so many different ways encouraged me to carry on. Without them my path to peace would have been much more cumbersome. Each act of kindness tossed off a heavy stone of burden.

Guilt often riddled my emotions when I thought about properly acknowledging all that was bestowed upon me. There were no adequate words to express the depths of my gratitude. Nor, was it possible to accomplish the gargantuan effort required to reach all that responded to my needs. So, today I journal to record my thank yous to each and every person that extended themselves in any way on my behalf and on behalf of my family. Your loving support was silently appreciated. What you had to say mattered, what you did made a difference and your prayers of comfort and peace straightened my back bent with heartbreak. I appreciate and will forever hold dear your abundant outpouring of love.

Almost five years later, I see our community being stirred again. Waves of tragedy have pushed through the calm waters of our steadfast families. Causing our awareness to heighten and propelling us to respond. Witnessing the current upheaval in our community triggers memories to flood my mind. Tempting me to retrace a painful trail in my life. These local losses have touched one of my own, stirring within my daughter a deep and distracting sense of sadness. So much, that she placed a teary call to share her heavy heart. Confused by her own reaction she sniffled her way through her sentiments, “Mom, I just feel like my soul has been shredded these past few days. I just know how bad it hurts.” I responded as gently as I could, “Of course your heart hurts. It’s called compassion and it is causing you to mourn your own loss again. ”

With these uneasy feelings creeping around me, I can’t help by let my thoughts wander to the scriptures for wisdom when I am seeking to dispell the shadows lengthening around me. I’ve learned I have to work against the forces that turn my thinking away from the goodness of Christ. Therefore, in anticipation I go to God’s word to show me the light; the better way of thinking, of reacting, of behaving. I find words that speak to me as I thumb through Matthew, 1 Thessalonians and The Book of Galatians:

“Teacher, what is the greatest commandment in the Law?” And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” 

Matthew 22:36-40

Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.

Galatians 6:2

Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.

1 Thessalonians 5:11

Rather than letting triggers take control and drive me downwards, I lift my eyes and see the good works of those that I live close to. People creating prayer chains to hang in school hallways, worship services being held to guide young adults to bring their grief before God, principals who pray and lift the needs of their students on a weekly basis, pastors visiting schools and Community of Faith bloggroups gathering to openly address the issues of mental health, students responding with palpable support for families they care about, coaches setting aside strenuous practices to allow for athletes to process the loss and pull together as a team. I have limited knowledge to the details surrounding the situation but, it is my guess that the outpouring of faith and love is brimming in the inner circles of those personally touched. I am confident it is happening, for I once experienced it myself. I know you are there.

This is where I stop, reflect on what is going on around me and measure my community with an eternal yardstick. Asking of myself what would Jesus think about all that is going on? Looking down on the tranquil setting of the Northshore of Louisiana would his heart be moved by the reactions of the people that live there?  Minutes pass as I sit and ponder this scenario. My window is open, the birds call to one another and every so often I am kissed with a gentle breeze. In this stilled setting, I can imagine an echoing shout from above, “Hey guys! Yes, you are getting it right! This is how I want you to respond to one another. Love each other through the trials of life. Lavish grace and mercy, compassion and care on your neighbors as I have taught you, especially when hearts are heavy. Lead people to me when they hurt and help them to find their way to the path of restoration I have laid out.”  Sitting on the fringes, I can see His call being carried out. Is there always more we can do? Absolutely! More glory, more worship, more praise, more trust, more witness, more love would always please our Heavenly Father. However, I don’t think that discounts what is being done. Our community is once again responding to a tragedy with traits characteristic of Jesus and that is a beautiful thing.

After being the recipient of such outlandish love and concerned reactions myself, I wondered how many people reacted the way they did because they knew Christ. Or, were their actions offered out of innate kindness and a genetically engineered tender heart? In honesty, I believe the first statement carries more truth than the second.  This ability to be intuned to the Holy Spirit has been poured out on humanity. A spiritual radar; so to speak . This spirit is the essence of self that moves us to behave in a holy way. When we act in love, with compassion, show care, extend forgiveness, offer mercy and pray about another person’s ache we are acting like Jesus. And, based on what I know that is how this community responds to a crisis. Tucked underneath our busy lives of practice sessions and afternoon lessons is a community of faith. A web of people connected through school carpools and weekend soccer games that collective believe in Christ. Oh, we attend different places of worship and align ourselves with varying denominations. However, we all direct our attention and adoration to the same Saviour.

Sometimes that strong undergirding doesn’t shine through our hectic schedules of work and play. Often times, we don’t openly talk about our faith during halftime of a high school football game or after enjoying a tennis match. Blessings and miracles aren’t the main topic discussed during lunch. Jesus isn’t introduced during gym sessions, nor in between power reps. However, at a time of crisis this spirit of compassion and quest to aid those in need certainly breaks forth and builds a safety net for our next door neighbors that are hard pressed. Spiritual strength is shared while waiting for children at the bus stop and when we end our evenings visiting with neighbors in the driveway. Warm meals are delivered and closing thoughts for the day lift the needs of others.

Let us continue with this sacred way of living, not only responding when we are made aware of suffering, but let Christ rise and be the very fiber of our lives. Forging loving bonds between us that are evident when our worlds are sweet and serene and overpowering during times of difficulty. May God be at the center of every dance lesson and in every sports huddle; welcomed in every meeting and called upon at the start of every performance. May His name rise from our voices as we work together to build upon what is already going on. Let’s not lose momentum when life gets easy. Instead, let’s come together and continue this journey to Christ, leading our children along the way. Strengthening the number of believers that possess the faith muscles to move mountains for one another.

I know this exists because I have felt the power it has to offer. An incredible force converged on me during my time of need. Your unity of faith lifted me from my knees and helped me walk again. May we always respond with such Christ centered valor when the call to rise and react is placed upon us. As well, when we walk along peaceful paths Therefore, weaving holy connections that glorify our God and bring hope into our lives.

By doing this we will strengthen, widen and enrich our …. Community of Faith.