Dear Donald…

Our D.B. passed away last night…The people that I work with are my best friends – They are both my blood and chosen family. My heart hurts when I think about the man that I’ll never get to work with again…But I am positive that one day I’ll see him again in eternity. This is my letter to him tonight – I’d like to believe that God will deliver it to him…

Dear Donald,

You were one of the few people in my life that made me feel special anytime that I was in your presence. You learned what was important to me…You noticed the little things. You told me that I was good at my job – good at my hobbies – beautiful…Important. Truth be told, YOU were the special one – YOU were the one that was good at everything you touched. Your innate goodness spread to everyone in your life. You were always the silver-lining to my day at work – There will forever be an void at Morehead Pools without you. I will forever miss you, my sweet friend…Thank you for seeing the best in me. Thank you for telling me everyday that I was special to you. Thank you for showing us how to work as unto the Lord – That no matter what job we have…It deserves our best. Thanks for being D.B… The best Donald Brown I’ll ever know.

Love, Beck

Empathy.

Some people can only understand the life that mirrors their own.They can’t empathize with individuals living outside of their own realm of understanding – Outside of what they have been through or could imagine experiencing.

When I can empathize with…

Find compassion in my heart for…

Be objective and accepting of someone opposite me – Opposite my own understanding,

I’m one more step closer to loving like Christ.

I want to be moving towards a Christ-like kind of love. A love that covers ALL.

Love, Beck

He makes my joy complete.

Swinging from the dogwood trees, building a fort with my brother and sister in the woods, singing to the top of my lungs down my old dirt road at sunset…

When I think about my childhood, these are a few of the images that my heart sends to my mind. I grew up on the outskirts of a small town with my siblings down the hall serving as my closest and only neighbors. My momma and daddy had us in church every time the double doors were unlocked. My daddy was a deacon in our small church and I actually helped him do the unlocking and locking down before and after services. I could not wait until I was old enough to sing with my parents in our church’s choir. Some of my most cherished memories were had in that loft…My daddy on the top row, my momma in the middle, and my sister and I singing side by side on the bottom one. My brother didn’t enjoy singing in the choir, but he is actually quite the gifted musician. I believe that he left that loft because he just never wanted to give us the satisfaction of being right about our assumptions concerning his singing abilities.
Each member of my family is musical in one or more capacities – either playing instruments or singing. My mother enrolled each of us in piano lessons at a very young age. It didn’t take long for me to realize that the piano forte was never quite my forte... I didn’t take to it and it didn’t take to me.  I’ll never forget my mom telling me, “Becky, do not tell your teacher that you can sing.” Perplexed – I inquired, “Why, Momma?” To which she replied, “Just don’t do it.” Later on, at one of our recitals, I finally learned the intent of my mother’s instruction. My piano instructor’s trio performed – The trio that she trained – The trio that my mother didn’t want me singing with, but was too nice to explain to me why. That night, I remember silently thanking my momma for telling me to keep my lips locked on that particular subject. So far, my life has been full up of smart people telling me to keep my mouth shut. She didn’t, however, advise me against talking about my instructor’s fourth cousin with her, who happened to be the President of the United States of America at that time. Sadly, my mom and dad paid for several long conversations concerning this particular president from Hope, Arkansas. Good times.
I am so very thankful that my parents allowed me to simply be who I was when it came to singing and my life in general. They never pushed to get me voice lessons in order to better my craft. My singing wasn’t a topic of discussion in our household while growing up – they gave me the freedom to do with it as I pleased. I do realize that this particular method of cultivating a gift isn’t necessarily for everyone, but it sure did work for me. It taught me that my voice – my singing, was part of what made me, me. It’s not something that I do – it’s part of who I am.
Over the years I’ve learned that God doesn’t need me to fulfill His plan, but He invites me to be a part of it anyway.  If I choose to accept His gracious offer – If I obey Him and give myself one hundred percent to the sharing of His love…His forgiveness…His redemption through Christ Jesus to His creation – I will be blessed. I know that the Holy Spirit speaks through the songs that I sing. Alone, I am just a talent. Alone, I am simply a lovely melody. But with God? I am a tool used for His purposes. How blessed and fulfilled I am to bring joy to the hearts of God’s people through music. If it were just me, if all I ever did was sing for an audience of One – sing only for Christ…My heart would be full, my joy would be complete. He has given me so much more than I deserve and I will sing songs filled with the promise of His hope…His forgiveness…His redemption…His joy…Of His love. I will praise His name with the song that He’s placed in my heart. Hallelujah!
My husband and I now have a family of our own to teach Christ’s love to. Our children are learning to discover and cultivate their own voices. They are learning how to just be who they are and to love the person that God has so thoughtfully created them to be.  I’m blessed to have learned from my own upbringing how to let my children experience for themselves what they will love to do. My kids will get to learn through trial and error what will make their hearts smile and offer them fulfillment in life.  I pray for my children to find extraordinary joy in simply serving the Lord and His creation. My hope is that they will use their talents and gifts for His purposes. I pray that I never lose sight of what is important in this life – Loving GodServing HimPraising His name.
XOXO,
Beck

Flowetry.

Some people think they really know me. The real me…

Really.

I’ll let them go on believing the truths that they’ve formulated…

Truths,

Comprised…Surmised…Derived – from a few briefly shared moments in my life.

An open window to my soul?

Perhaps one into the home of my alter ego…

***

I don’t even recognize the depths and realities of me most of the time.

Just when I start to get acquainted, comfortable with her – With my own soul – My own self…

She changes her position.

Her shadow does a one-eighty.

She cuts off her hair…Updates her wardrobe.

She’s barely recognizable.

Confusing at times, but always…

Interesting.

***

I’ll allow their presumptions…Assumptions.

I’ll just keep letting them see what they see…You see,

They’re simply feeling the effects of the window I left cracked open on the far end of my house…

They caught a glimpse of my soul – My self – from a different angle.

The lighting varies on that side of my house. It’s…

Revealing.

Deceiving.

***

If only I lived with but one window to my soul – To my self…

But I do not.

My home is full of them…

Around every corner – Every space is filled with shadows dancing alongside the light.

Depending on the day… A gentle breeze – A strong wind – A stillness can be felt…

Sometimes I pull the shades.

Aiming to keep the temperature of my soul – My self…

Controlled.

Managed.

Undamaged.

***

Eventually, each window will reveal a different shade – A different angle…

A different perspective to my soul – To my self…

Some flattering – Most not.

But I’ll open the windows anyway…

Freshen up the space in which I dwell.

I’ll choose which ones I want open and which ones I will barely crack.

I’ll choose to embrace my whole soul – My whole self.

I’ll be…

Accepting.

***

I may not have complete control over the altering temperatures in my home…

It’s these changing seasons that comprise…That complete me.

I do, however, decide who I invite in.

Most will only experience the light breeze from a barely opened window in the foyer.

A few get the tour… A few hold within their grasps a spare key to my heart.

These few know enough real truths for me…About me.

The real truth – The one that really matters is that I’m..

Blessed. 

Judging less. Loving more.

I am probably about to get myself into trouble…I’m willing to risk it to get this off of my chest. Something has been niggling at my heart for a while now – maybe a few years, actually. How do I put this into words?

Many of my fellow Christians are more concerned with my short-comings…with my sin-life…with my inadequacies than they are with saving a lost world.

Wow. I can’t believe that I just typed that. By “my” I mean, other Christian’s lives…I don’t have people pointing their finger in my face or having interventions on my behalf – nothing like that – but I do feel like they would if they knew how human I really am. My heart is burdened because I feel like the lost world is seeing us being so brittle towards one another all of the time…Talking behind each other’s backs when we should be going straight to the source – focusing on someone else’s problems instead of looking at our own…Judging one another just because we want to be right – not because we love them and want to bring about healing in their lives. They have forgotten that love covers a host of sins – and if you don’t love someone, you have no place in their world…Especially the one where you’re trying to fix what you surmise is wrong with them.

I want to say that there is no one person that I’m thinking about while I’m typing this – except for perhaps myself. I know that I’ve thought this way before – I know I don’t want to do it again. I’m not trying to make anyone feel bad about standing up for what you believe in – for not budging on what you know is right and wrong. I admire strong-minded and full-hearted individuals…I count myself as one of them. But I also believe that if I’m going to really show the world that I love them…I need to quit trying to prove to all of my Christian friends that I’ve got it all together, all of the time. Because when I hear a Christian say that I will lose my witness for drinking a glass of wine in public, I think to myself…No, I’ll lose my witness with you, my fellow Christian. I’m pretty sure if I was drunk and acting a fool that I would lose all accountability as a witness for Christ – but if someone decides that because I drink one glass of wine that I’m no longer a good witness for Him? I think that says more about their character than it does about mine. I promise you that what comes out of my mouth sometimes is more of a deterrent towards the gospel message than what goes into it.

I would never go to a household or a country that believes eating certain meats is wrong and consume that meat. My Papa didn’t like us wearing shorts that were too short, so we didn’t wear them in his house – we were extra careful not to offend him in that way while under his roof. My mom and dad didn’t let us go to dances growing up. My senior year they told me that I could go to the prom if I wanted to…I didn’t go because I didn’t want to stir up any drama over it.

Do I think eating certain meats is wrong? No. Did I even own a pair of shorts that were too short growing up? No. Do I believe that dancing is in any way wrong? No. I would have been wrong to not respect and adhere to the rules of the people in my life that were in charge of raising me – the people that loved me.

Hopefully this will soften hearts that need it…I know that God has been speaking this truth to my heart for a few years now. I want to stop judging so much and start loving a little more. I want my relationship with Christ to flourish…I want to be in love with His creation – with His people.

All my heart, Beck

Flawed, but wholly loved.

It’s that time again! No, I’m not making New Year’s resolutions;) I’ve never been one to follow pointless rules. If I want to change – I can do it ANY time. SO, I’m going to share a few of my most recently inspired thoughts. Some I scribbled while driving down the road…eyes on the pavement, pen in hand – Some, written in the dark of night…bedside scribblings. I very much enjoy rereading them…Here’s my heart, friends.

***

I always end up where I’m going.

***

Is it possible for us to go backwards and forwards at the same time?

Back to a place where praying wasn’t a crime?

Forward to a time when more souls will embrace the name of Jesus as Sovereign…Holy…Savior of mankind?

***

I love this stretch of road – It feels like home.

I was feeling this very literally about a stretch of road that I was driving down – but when I looked at this later, I decided that it referred to my life. Home is where I am – the road that I’m traveling down…It’s beautiful – it’s my home.

***

I jotted this down as soon as I got off the pavement and in my ride…

I didn’t break stride. I kept my eyes forward as I rounded the bend…The leaf fell stem first. I put my hand out and grabbed a hold of it – I kept on running…I smiled. This leaf and I – colliding at the same time…meant to be together. How lovely.

***

I don’t like to cry. I wrote this when I was desperately trying to keep it together – I didn’t have time to break down…

I’m trying real hard not to cry – I’m afraid if I start…I won’t be able to stop.

Keep the tears at bay for now.

Wait ’til I can open the floodgates with no time frame for pulling them back shut again.

***

The person I wrote this about knows who they are…Oh to be this for someone! What a joy to know that my love has the power to change you…to heal you.

I don’t think about my flaws…my shortcomings – when I’m with you. You make me see the good. You show me how special I am.

If I could bottle your love up, I’d hang it as a necklace around my heart – a constant reminder that it’s encompassed by the warmth of your love.

***

Thank you for allowing me this indulgence…I love the way my heart speaks to my mind. Here’s one more journal entry that I actually wrote this morning…

If I was one to wait for a single day out of the year to resolve something in my life…I would choose to see myself in the reflection of my loved one’s eyes. I would see their love for me – the way they see me will be the mirror that I choose to view myself in. I won’t focus on what needs to be fixed all of the time. I won’t focus on the inconsequential things about myself that I don’t like – I’ll see myself as cherished…Flawed, but wholly loved. Yes. That’s what I’ll do. 

XOXO, Beck