There are very few things I can say with certainty about my life. But what I know without a doubt is that God pursues me in a relentless way – a way that I found to be painful and offensive in my earlier years. I had such grand plans for my life; I was on my way to becoming a professional musician when God was finally able to get my attention.
That’s when the thwarting began.
Now a Christian for well over 20 years, I look back and see his divine hand in it all - messes and dead ends. But at the time, it just felt like death. And truly, that’s what it was. God, in all his sovereignty, knew that the path I was on would bring about the death of my soul, so he orchestrated my emotional death. The death of self.
I see it now, with thankfulness.
He knew musical success would become a prideful monster inside of me. Relational success (the marriage I’d always dreamed of) would mean I’d have no need for his goodness and grace. Material success would quickly turn into an insatiable hunger for more. It’s just how I’m wired.
So, after a divorce at 23, an about-face on my music career which became an arduous journey into the world of Marriage and Family Therapy, more relational heartache than I thought one person could shoulder, and finally debilitating depression and anxiety, I surrendered.
It wasn’t pretty. It still isn’t. I’m not good at this surrender thing. My mentor describes my personality as “high octane.” I’m an Enneagram 4w3 with the one-to-one instinct (SX). I’m fiercely competitive, especially when it comes to relationships. I feel life on a very intense level. When I’m angry, I shake. When I’m happy, I laugh hard. And when I fight for something, I fight with everything I’ve got.
But as a 4, shame is the ruling emotion in my life. It kept me all tied up in silent knots, until someone came along and told me it was okay to untie them…and that I didn’t have to do it alone.
Shame tells us that the things we keep in secret must stay hidden. To expose them would ensure our demise. But shame is a liar. It certainly feels like death to expose our shame, but the truth is that exposure causes the shame to shrivel up and lose its power. Putting words to our shame in front of another is shame’s kryptonite.
And so I learned to unravel the knots. This is not always an easy task in Christianity. While we understand in our minds that grace covers everything - every-single-thing - our hearts often aren’t convinced. We go to church and feel the invisible pressure to put on a mask.
But when my mask meets your mask, what happens?
Nothing happens. Nothing is touched. Nothing is changed.
The Spirit is quenched.
More than anything, I long to see lives renewed, hearts touched, souls formed in the ways of love and new life.
So if any of this sounds hopeful, or even a little bit intriguing, I invite you to come and sit down at the table with me. Join me in this fight for our hearts, for truth, for emotional honesty, for freedom. It would be such an honor to have you on this healing path with me.
We believe that the Bible is the Word of God.
We believe that the Bible is our authoritative guide for all we believe and do.
We believe that God exists in three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
We believe that Jesus is fully human and fully divine.
We believe that all people are born sinners and in desperate need for the forgiveness of their sin.
We believe that Jesus died to provide a sacrifice for the sins of the world and that He rose from the dead as a testimony to God’s acceptance of His sacrifice.
We believe that each person must individually trust in Jesus to receive the benefit of His death for sin.
We believe that once we truly trust in Jesus He will progressively transform us to become more like Him.
I'm a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with a MA from Bethel Seminary in St. Paul, MN. That's HOW I get to do what I do.
But the good stuff came later - the WHY. I've been trained in Spiritual Direction by Larry Crabb. I've spent two separate weeks with Larry in the Colorado Rockies at the School of Spiritual Direction and the Next Step School of Spiritual Direction. These were the most transformative weeks of my life, and my love and passion for doing what I do has grown exponential since those times.