I’m Not Chasing That Anymore

I’m not sure why the email was so triggering. Or why I haven’t simply unsubscribed from it before now.

But it led me down a rabbit hole of links that led to me needing to just sit down and cry. Not sobs, mind you. Just some old heart mess that I guess is still buried and needs to be addressed.

I dried my eyes, asked the Lord to reveal what the deal was, and went out for my morning walk. I came home realizing that the email had tapped into an old, unfilled longing. A familiar idol. A former avenue I tried turning to desperately for years to fill my heart. One that never satisfied.

What’s crazy is that I thought I had made a lot of progress in that area. I thought I had moved on. Obviously, there has been growth because what once would have left me undone for days, even weeks, took a short walk to shake out. But this morning reveals that while I have grown, there’s still room for more growth. And there’s still a need to guard my heart.

I type all of this out to share a phrase that is helping me:

“I’m not chasing that anymore.”

Because I’m not. The Lord and I have been working on this for years. He has shifted me and changed me and done so much good work in me. But that doesn’t mean I’ve reached a place of perfection. I still need to be on guard when it comes to this idol. I still need Him to help me look to Him and Him alone to fill my heart.

Maybe you need this phrase, too.

Maybe today is the day you need to draw a line in the sand when it comes to some of the things you have been chasing after over Him, more than Him, or instead of Him.

Maybe you need a phrase for when temptation shows up strong and leaves you wanting to fall back into old patterns you thought you had moved past.

Maybe you need to give yourself grace and start over again.

Maybe you need to declare something like this:

“I’m not who I was. Christ has declared me a new creation in Him, and He is shaping me to look more and more like Him each day. I know that’s who I used to be, but I’m not chasing __________ anymore.”

Keep moving in that new direction with Christ, friend, and know I’m over here cheering you on. ❤️

“Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Let those of us who are mature think this way, and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal that also to you. Only let us hold true to what we have attained.” Philippians 3:12-16

Blessings, dear friends,
Kimberly

You Smell Like Hope

“If hope had a smell, what would it be?”

This is a question someone posed in a podcast a few years ago. My first thought was honeysuckle and gardenia blossoms.

One reminds me of carefree summer days spent in my childhood backyard. The other is like the very fragrance of heaven when I’m out on a morning walk and I breathe in their heady scent.

And I couldn’t help but pinch off one of the last browning gardenia blossoms I saw while I was out walking earlier this week, wondering if it would still smell glorious in its wilted state.

It did.

Even though it was no longer releasing a fragrance strong enough for me to notice from the road, when I pulled it in close and breathed in deep … hope. Hints of heaven.

It reminds me of 2 Corinthians 2:15: “For we are the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing.” And it made me think of those who might be feeling a bit wilted and withered by the difficult circumstances of life. Or maybe you feel past your prime because of the passing of time.

When the hope of Christ is at the core of you, His is the fragrance that will radiate off of you.

I even thought about how fragrance is often better released when something has been pressed, cut, or crushed. The pungent odor of crushed garlic. The bright scent of freshly cut pine. The sweet oils and perfumes released by the bruising of leaves, stems, and blooms.

Maybe your heart needs to hear this.

Even if you feel like your glory is fading, you can still give off the glorious aroma of Christ. And even if it feels like the enemy is trying to take you out, those wounded places Satan wants to use to destroy you can serve to release the hope of Jesus within you.

If hope had a smell?

I think it would be you, my friend. You as you keep placing all of your hope and trust in Jesus, no matter what comes your way. You as you choose peace and exude joy, even when life hits hard.

You are the aroma of Christ. You leave people wanting to stand close and breathe in deep. And I’m so thankful for the beautiful ways Jesus uses your life to bring a bit of heaven here to earth.

❤️ Kimberly

A Word in Season Designs {Cards, Prayers, & Prints to Help You Encourage Others}

Do you ever struggle to know what to say to a hurting friend? Do you often find yourself wishing you could find the right words to let others know they are loved, seen, celebrated, and prayed for? 

As a woman who feels it deep in her bones that God has called her to use words to encourage others, I would love to be a help to you. I have just opened up an Etsy shop called “A Word in Season Designs” where I will be selling cards and prints, many with pre-written prayers of encouragement. 

The reason for the name is found in one of my favorite passages of Scripture: “The Lord GOD has given me the tongue of those who are taught, that I may know how to sustain with a word him who is weary. Morning by morning he awakens; he awakens my ear to hear as those who are taught.” (Isaiah 50:4) The NKJV phrases it as “a word in season” for those who are weary. This is what I want to do in my own life. I want to sit with the Lord, study His Word, listen to His holy instructions and promptings, and speak life and hope into the lives of others. I want to be a Spirit-led and Word-fed encourager – especially when it comes to those feeling wearied by this world.

And there really is nothing quite like getting a perfectly-timed word of encouragement in the mail from a friend when our heart is struggling or when we simply need to know someone else is cheering us on. That’s why I have started making these cards, and I am praying they will help you send a word in season to those you love.

Another thing my shop will continually carry is downloadable prints of something I wrote years ago that people continue to email me about – a piece that starts, “I would have pulled Joseph out.”

Who in your life could use a little snail mail hug? Keep a watch on my shop for something you can send with love here: https://www.etsy.com/shop/AWordInSeasonDesigns

Love & prayers,
Kimberly

What If You Don’t Need to “Fix” Your Aging Body?

The world tells us it’s the absolute worst thing that can happen to us as women, this process of aging. We’re told it’s something to fight against. That we must work hard to rid ourselves of our wrinkles and gray hairs and sagging skin. That we need to give all of our time and money so we can look like we haven’t aged a day.

Yet God’s Word tells us something very different. It tells us that gray hair is a crown of glory. (Proverbs 16:31) It tells us that charm is deceitful and beauty is fleeting, but a woman who reverently fears the Lord is to be praised. (Proverbs 31:30) It tells us not to lose heart, that although our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. (2 Corinthians 4:16) It tells us that these bodies aren’t even our final bodies! We get gloriously perfected ones for all of eternity. (2 Corinthians 5:1-5)

And so I just want to pray for us today. Especially for those who feel ashamed or discouraged by the ways you are showing your age.

Father God, I am so incredibly thankful that the world’s standards aren’t Your standards. We, as finite-minded human beings, love to focus on outward appearances. We define ourselves and one another by what we see. But You look at the heart. And I’m just so thankful that Your Word holds the truth for us that while we may not grow more beautiful by the world’s measures, we absolutely can grow increasingly beautiful according to Your definitions of beauty. And that’s what I pray for us today, Lord.

I pray that we will be some of the most attractive women in the world – not in outward ways that garner human praise, but in how our words and actions leave others wanting to know more about You. I pray for eyes that, though they may be growing dimmer physically, see You more clearly and look on others with more tenderness and mercy. I pray for mouths that, though they may have lips that appear thinner, open wide with grace and speak truth and hope with humility. I pray that behind these no-longer-youthful breasts would beat hearts filled to the brim with Your love for us and our love for You. Hearts that always have room to love others well. I pray that instead of worrying about what people think when they look at our skin with all of its wrinkles and spots and veins and lines, we would simply move towards others with compassionate acts of kindness and service.

While our outward bodies may be getting weaker, I pray that we would possess an incredible inner strength because You have helped us fortify our souls with the hope and truth of Your Word. I pray that we would indeed be renewed day by day. That we would be more peaceful. More grace-filled. More loving. More like You, Jesus. I pray that we would be steadier. Humbler. Kinder. Bolder. Gentler. Wiser. Ever-growing and maturing. Deep wells instead of shallow pools.

I pray that there would be a light in our eyes and an abundance of joy in our hearts and that we would truly be some of the most genuinely beautiful women because of how much we live and love like You, Jesus. Help us see ourselves the way You see us – beloved, chosen, and woven together with beautiful intentionality. And keep reminding us that while the world tells us all of the things we need to “fix” about these aging bodies, You tell us the real secret to true beauty is fixing our eyes on You, Jesus. We become what we behold, and we want to be like You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.


I love you, beautiful sisters in Christ, mighty women of God. I’m not saying we can’t color our hair or that we don’t need to take care of ourselves. I’m just reminding our hearts that our worth isn’t found in what we look like… and we have so much more to offer this world than our physical appearance.

Kimberly

Living Filled and Spilled

Has the Holy Spirit been nudging you to do something new, something kind, something sacrificial, but you find yourself shoving those inclinations down? Pushing them to the side? Ignoring them, figuring they will eventually go away?

There’s a moment in a book I read years ago that I would love to share with you. I won’t mention the title since I don’t want to spoil anything for anyone, and I’m not sure this book would be everyone’s cup of tea.

In this book, Death is the narrator. And near the end, when Death comes to take the soul of one of the characters, that soul is light. It is easy to lift because it has been emptied out. It had been spent living fully and loving deeply. And while I’m not saying this is a theologically sound moment as in this idea of personified Death coming for us, I do think this moving moment is certainly Scriptural in how we are intended to leave this earth.

We are to be spent. Fully poured out.

Think of Paul’s words in Philippians 2:17, “But even if I am being poured out like a drink offering on the sacrifice and service coming from your faith, I am glad and rejoice with all of you.” The Greek here is “spéndō: to pour out as a libation, i.e. (figuratively) to devote (one’s life or blood, as a sacrifice) (“spend”):—(be ready to) be offered.” This is absolutely how Paul lived as he made the gospel known and poured into the spiritual maturity of others.

And then Jesus… this is how He lived and died as well. His life, His tears, His blood, all willingly and fully poured out for us that we might know abundant and eternal life in Him. (Philippians 2:3-8)

I want this. I want to be a woman who lives continually filled and spilled. No kind words and deeds kept inside of me because I worry about what people might think. No act of love remaining within me because I am afraid it might cost me too much. No hope and truth of Jesus unshared because I fret over how others might receive it. I want to reach the end of my life spent.

Yes, there will always be people who might judge us or misunderstand us when we live this way. Yes, we need to do all of this with great humility, grace, and love. And no, there are no promises that we will get the results we are expecting or hoping for on the other side of our obedience. But isn’t Jesus, the One who gave everything for us, worth giving our everything for?

So, let me ask once more. What Holy Spirit nudges are we ignoring? Do we really want to leave this earth someday with all of that still stored up inside of us? Or do we want to spend our lives being willingly spent for Christ?

Let’s live poured out, friends. Let’s press past the things that cause us to hold back – things like insecurity, fear, and selfishness. Let’s reach eternity emptied out because we longed for others to taste and know the fullness found in Jesus.

Love & Prayers,
Kimberly

Praying for Our Children {Part 2}

Hi, dear blogging friends!

I wanted to be sure to come back by and link out the remainder of the series on praying for our children.

As a mom of three girls well into their teens, I know what it’s like to go through seasons where you don’t know what to pray for your children. To be so overwhelmed by all they are facing and all of the ways you feel inadequate as a parent that you aren’t sure what to say. You want to pray purposefully, you want to press past “just keep them safe, Jesus,” but where do you start? That’s why I pulled these prayers together for us. Because while we may not always know what to say or how to pray, God’s Word shows up as an incredible guide. 

Ultimately, I pray these prayers will help you put words to so many of the things stirring in your heart for your child. I pray they help you feel less alone in the struggles that come along with the joys of being a parent. And I pray that you know you are never alone in praying for your child. Jesus is praying for our children, too! (Hebrews 7:24-25, 9:24; Romans 8:34)

Isn’t that incredible to think about? The One who made all things and holds all things together… the One by whom and for whom our children were made… the One who exists outside of time and sees their beginning, their end, and every day in-between… the One who knows His plans and purposes for them… the One who knows their deepest fears, their greatest joys, and their fiercest struggles… the One who knit them together intricately and knows how to reach them powerfully… the One who is aware of their every need, even before they are… the One who knows the number of hairs on their head at any given moment… the One who counted them worth dying for and who now sits reigning in majesty at the right hand of God the Father is praying with us for them.

Let that sink in deep. Let it lift the crazy weight that everything depends on you right off of your worn-out shoulders. Our Lord, Savior, and King is praying with you for the ones you love most. He’s praying for you, too. We’re never alone – not as we parent and not even as we pray.

Praying with you and for you,
Kimberly 

40 Days of Praying for Our Children {Days 21-40}

Day Twenty-One: Praying for Godly Spouses and Marriages

Day Twenty-Two: Praying for an Abundantly Fruitful Life

Day Twenty-Three: Praying for Endurance to Finish the Race

Day Twenty-Four: Praying for Healing in Strained and Broken Family Relationships 

Day Twenty-Five: Praying for Their Minds and Thought Lives

Day Twenty-Six: Praying for Hearts of Forgiveness

Day Twenty-Seven: Praying against Forgetfulness

Day Twenty-Eight: Praying for Their Hearts and Mouths

Day Twenty-Nine: Praying for a Legacy of Faith

Day Thirty: Praying for Their Hands

Day Thirty-One: Praying for Their Feet

Day Thirty-Two: Praying They Honor God, Their Parents, and Others

Day Thirty-Three: Praying They Live Spirit-filled and Spirit-led Lives

Day Thirty-Four: Praying Psalm 23

Day Thirty-Five: Praying for the Grace & Commitment Needed for Spiritual Growth

Day Thirty-Six: Praying for Clarity of Purpose, Wisdom, & Direction

Day Thirty-Seven: Praying for the Boldness to Live Differently and Proclaim Christ Openly

Day Thirty-Eight: Divine Interruptions

Day Thirty-Nine: Praying for Lives Filled and Overflowing with Christ’s Extravagant Love

Day Forty: Praying for Lives of Full Surrender

For the One Whose Body Feels More Like a Prison Than a Home

If there is anything that can cause us frustration and discouragement in this life, it’s our bodies.

Bodies so easily broken. Bodies riddled with sickness and disease. Bodies that groan and ache and sometimes even refuse to cooperate. Bodies we have no choice but to dwell in this side of eternity.

I find it no small coincidence that when Scripture calls these bodies “lowly” in Philippians 3 – meaning ultimately that they exist in a humble state for now, here on earth – that word translates as “depression (in rank or feeling).” Because isn’t that so true? That these bodies in their current depressed state can leave us feeling so very depressed?

And God has given us such hope. The promise that He WILL take our weak mortal bodies and transform them into glorious bodies like His own. That Jesus WILL make us glorious and gloriously whole for all eternity. (Philippians 3:20-21) That just as we have borne the image of the man of the dust, Adam, we WILL one day bear the image of the Man of heaven, Jesus. (1 Corinthians 15:49)

But we have to get there, don’t we? We have to wake up and keep moving and keep hoping. And so I just want to pray for us all, wherever we may be with these bodies. Maybe you disdain the design of your body, and you need the reminder that the body He gave You for this season here on earth is good. Maybe your body is desperately broken, and you don’t know how to keep facing each new day. Grab whatever you need from this prayer, and know that I’m lifting you up today.

Father God, You offer us so much hope when it comes to these lowly bodies. The hope of bodies one day whole and fully functional and imperishably beautiful. Bodies free from pain. Free from disease. Free from anything that keeps them from moving about freely.

Lord, where my body is functioning well, help me not slip into despising it for how it looks. Help me know that the body I have right now is good for all that I need it to do. I can move. I can eat. I can breathe. I can love and serve others in so many different ways. There is no need for a glorious body here on earth. I don’t need a body that will be worshiped by others. I simply need a body that can worship You and live for You. Help me care for it, be kind to it, and honor You with it. Please forgive me for all of the ways I have been ungrateful. You have given me a good body. The right body to fulfill Your good purposes here on earth.

And for my friends who presently struggle with pain and sickness, I pray extra today, Lord. I pray blessings over those with broken bodies, injured bodies, diseased bodies, disabled bodies, and painfully aging bodies. Where their bodies currently feel anything but good, will You meet them with Your goodness? Let Your future promises give them right now hope and endurance. Where the current state of their body leaves them feeling depressed and overwhelmed, be the lifter of their heads and the light in their eyes. Show up in their lives with tenderness and wisdom, kindness and practical help.

Please meet them in their weaknesses and be their strength. Meet them in moments of despair with tangible hope. Lord, You know that we are but dust. You understand that we get tired and overwhelmed and struggle to keep going. Remind them they are loved and lift words like “burden” and “bother” out of their minds. They are worth loving, worth fighting for, worth tending to. Help them find even the smallest ways to give thanks for their bodies, and where they can’t right now, help them know that’s okay. They can instead give thanks that You, the God who holds all things together, will hold them together, too.

Where their bodies are being unsubmissive to medical science, unsubmissive to the dictates of how they are supposed to move and function, I pray for submission. I pray for surrender to Your name and Your design, Jesus. And where their bodies may not submit this side of heaven, I thank You that there will come a day when EVERY knee will bow and EVERY tongue will confess that Jesus is Lord. And that means our bodies will have to submit to You, too. They will be transfigured and made whole. Until that day, Lord, hold us. Help us. Renew us. Strengthen us. May we live in these bodies less like it’s a prison sentence and more like it’s the home You have graciously given us to love others out of for now. You are our living hope, and we place our hope in You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.


You are loved and lifted up in prayer, friends,
Kimberly

Praying for Our Children {Part One}

Hi, friends!

If you follow me on social media, you know that I have been going through a 40-day series of praying for our children specifically and scripturally. But just in case you haven’t seen any of those posts, I wanted to provide you with links here. I will put the first half that I have finished in this post, and then I will send out links to the second half once I am completely done.

Why are these longer prayers? Honestly, because that is how they have poured out daily. We just carry so many burdens and concerns for our children, and I have wanted to cover these topics well. But please don’t let their length overwhelm you or discourage you from praying! You can let my long-form prayers inform your short-form prayers. Grab a sentence, a paragraph, or a verse or two from these prayers and make them your own. I want these prayers to help you feel less alone in the struggles we face as parents and to leave you feeling better equipped in knowing what you can even pray.

Lifting you up today as a parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle, teacher… whatever position of love and influence you hold. ❤️

May these prayers be a blessing and a help to you,
Kimberly

40 Days of Praying for Our Children {Days 1-20}

Day One: Start with Me

Day Two: Praying for Salvation

Day Three: Praying for Wisdom & Revelation

Day Four: Praying for a Deeply Rooted Life

Day Five: Praying for Community

Day Six: Praying Against Self-Harm

Day Seven: Praying for Spiritual Hunger & Thirst

Day Eight: Praying for Spiritual Alertness

Day Nine: Praying for Hearts of Trust

Day Ten: Praying for Sexual Purity

Day Eleven: Praying for Hearts of Humility

Day Twelve: Praying Peace in the Face of Fear

Day Thirteen: Praying for Kingdom-Hearted Lives

Day Fourteen: Praying for a Deep Love of Scripture

Day Fifteen: Praying for Godly Friends & Mentors

Day Sixteen: Praying for the Prodigals and the Spiritually Blind

Day Seventeen: Praying for Eyes that See Clearly

Day Eighteen: Praying for a Deep Sense of Belonging

Day Nineteen: Praying For Quieted Hearts, Minds, & Bodies

Day Twenty: Praying Hope and Help for the Suicidal

The Purpose of Our Bodies (Spoiler Alert: It’s Not Physical Beauty)

I have my grandmother’s arms. At least, I have arms that look like hers more and more each day.

I confess I was a little thrown off to initially discover this fact as I walked past a mirror in a sleeveless shirt and caught sight of the shape of them. Soft and full. Not trim and toned.

Before you think too poorly of me for even writing about this, let me stop here and say that I never judged my grandmother for her arms or the shape of them when I was younger. I do not recognize her arms on me now because I thought less of them then. I noticed because I spent so much time with her in my growing-up years. Her house was one of my favorite places to be. Her presence, one of God’s kindnesses to me.

But while I never judged or cared about the shape of her body on HER, I very much judged those arms on ME. Because this is what we are taught to value in this world – looking good. Being fit and toned and buff and beautiful in the world’s eyes. Good arms are only super trim arms… right?

Wrong.

Thankfully, the thoughts of disappointment in my own body were fleeting and very quickly corrected. Because goodness… what a gift it would be to have arms like hers.

Arms that worked hard and created beauty.
Arms that prepared everyone’s favorite foods with great love.
Arms that set the table and taught us the value of meals together.
Arms that were always open for me to stop by at any time and visit.
Arms that did what arms are meant to do – love and welcome and serve.

The fact is, we weren’t given these bodies so that they can look good. These bodies are meant to be vessels that help us do good.

We are image-bearers. Members of the family of God. Brothers and sisters of Christ. And do you know what Scripture says about Jesus? “There was nothing beautiful or majestic about his appearance, nothing to attract us to him,” Isaiah 52:3b.

He had no physical beauty, yet there has never been anyone on this earth more beautiful than Christ because of who He was and how He loved. And we get to bear His image! We, as Christ-followers, are being shaped more and more each day to love and live and look like Him spiritually.

I type all of this out today not to dishonor my grandmother’s body, but to honor her heart. God designed her beautifully – inside and out. I also want to remind us all that it is not our job to make our bodies look more beautiful and acceptable to this world’s standards of beauty. Should we take care of these temples? Of course. But ultimately so that we can do good, not look good. We are here to live beautiful lives that glorify God as we love, serve, and welcome others.

My grandmother was a beautiful woman, and it is a gift to resemble her in any way. And it is an even greater gift to get to resemble my Savior.

Who do you resemble physically in your family that loved and served like Christ? Maybe you’re not wild about having his nose, her chin, those thighs that run hard in your family. But maybe today is a good day to thank God for the ways their life has shaped yours. And if you don’t come from a family that knew Christ or reflected Him? If you are one of the first in your family? You are ultimately God’s son or daughter, and you have a rich and beautiful heritage in Him. You are His image-bearer. And what a beautiful legacy you now get to pass down.

May we go out and make this world more beautiful today as we show up with the tangible love of Christ.

Blessings, dear friends,
Kimberly

All That We Need, Jesus Is

What is your greatest area of need today?

My heart is hurting deeply for so many who have faced heartbreak and tragedy over the past several weeks. People who have experienced devastating losses or received difficult news or are facing tremendous health challenges. And it is hard because I cannot be physically present with all of these people at once. Nor can I heal their hearts or fix their problems or tell them what they most need to do.

But here is the hope… I know the One who can. Jesus.

He is eternal. Unchanging and unbound by time. Ever-present and the provider of all that we need.

And there is incredible comfort to be found in these truths if we truly allow our souls the time to sit with them. To sit with Him.

Because there isn’t a single day on our timeline that Jesus is not there. He is the One who was and is and is to come. And He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. (Revelation 1:8; Hebrews 13:8) As we stand in this day, as we look to tomorrow, as we consider eternity, He is there. I AM is there. He is here. (Exodus 3:14; John 8:58; Matthew 28:20)

And He has told us exactly who He is. He has said…

I am the Bread of Life. (John 6:35, 48, 51)

I am the Light of the World. (John 8:12, 9:5)

I am the Door of the Sheep. (John 10:7-9)

I am the Good Shepherd. (John 10:11,14)

I am the Resurrection and the Life. (John 11:25)

I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. (John 14:6)

I am the True Vine. (John 15:1-17)

And He is all of these things every single day, now and forever.

He is every day our Bread who sustains and nourishes us.

He is every day our Light who outshines the darkness and step-by-step guides us, within us and around us.

He is every day the Door where we find welcome and refuge and the way to eternal life.

He is every day our Good Shepherd who leads us through the valleys and over the mountains and restores our souls. (Psalm 23)

He is every day the Resurrection and the Life. The One who resurrects hearts to new life and can resurrect our hope, peace, and joy.

He is every day the Truth we need to live for Him as we are shaped more and more like Him.

He is every day the Vine we can abide in as we draw strength and produce good fruit.

All that we need, He is. Every day.

What truth about I AM do you need to sit with today? Who do you need to thank Him for being in your life? Jesus didn’t tell us who He was and forever is for us to simply read over His words, maybe memorize them, and then go about our days. His words are LIFE and HOPE and SUSTENANCE.

What do you need today, friend? Look to Him. Sit with Him. I AM is with you.

Love & Prayers,
Kimberly