Lockets in Liam’s Name

I have been campaigning on my Facebook and Instagram the last four days for something very special and just realized that I didn’t share what I was doing ON HERE! With the community that so closely supported us during our time in the hospital. I’m sorry!

Let me back up.

October is Infant and Pregnancy Loss Awareness month. As many of you know, I am a designer with Origami Owl. We sell custom jewelry, and our signature piece is the Living Locket. Our lockets tell stories and part of our mission is to be a force for good. We take that seriously (you’ll see more on that below).

You may remember that for Liam’s 1st birthday, instead of presents we asked for locket donations. Our goal was to donate 20 lockets to our local hospital for moms dealing with pregnancy loss or complications. Well, we donated 37! As lockets were handed out to moms that were going through loss or difficult pregnancies, the word got out. The hospital reached out to me because they wanted to partner with us in serving these moms.

And “Lockets in Liam’s Name” was born.

Since then, we’ve donated close to 100 lockets, and the local Maternal Fetal Medicine just reached out to me again on behalf of the hospital. They wanted to order 50 more lockets! I posted the news on Facebook and shared a little of our story. I was curious to know if anyone would partner with us in donating more lockets to the hospital in Liam’s name.

Well. It hasn’t even been four days, and with the hosptial’s donation and the donations of my friends and family, we have raised $4,187.93. That is enough money to buy 126 lockets. I am blown away and so touched by the big-hearted generosity of so many.

The stories have been so beautiful. I’ll post here what I shared on Facebook this morning (these numbers are already out of date again because the donations keep pouring in):

Last night as I was getting ready to go to bed we had raised about $1,400 and had 41 lockets donated. This morning before 8am we received almost another $1,000 in donations bumping us to 68 lockets. How does that even happen? I’ll tell you how. 16 of them came from other Origami Owl designers (and probably half of the entire 68 have come from my fellow designers). With tears streaming down their cheeks they have donated lockets in memory of their own babies or grand babies that they lost. After sharing her devastating story one said… “So anyway, I guess I imagine what it would have been like to feel support especially by a random act of kindness.” And another said, “I will donate 7…one for each of the little angels that my daughter has lost.” These are my friends. Designers I have gotten to know within this company. Some on my team. Most not. Just sisters in our goal and mission to be a ‪#‎forceforgood‬ And they’re not the only ones. My friends and family have donated from painful places as well. One friend wept as she donated ten lockets after praying about the number she was to send. She has grieved with her son and daughter in law after losing multiple babies. This is a heartbreaking project and yet at the same time so beautiful. October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month and because of you and our local hospital, I will be driving nearly 120 lockets to be donated. Thank you.

So my question for you: would you consider donating? The cost per locket (I have donated my commission to make each locket more affordable) is $33.19. If you are interested, you can send the money via PayPal or comment below to make other arrangements. I am trying to place my order by today, so if you’re able to donate this afternoon/evening, great! If donations come in after that, I’ll place another order. Here’s the secure link to send money:


Here’s a shot of some of the lockets we were able to donate last year. My contacts in the office have told me again and again how meaningful these gifts have been to grieving and shocked mothers and fathers. Thank you for considering being a part of this project!

Lockets from Liam

day 2: Naught Be All Else

Day 2 Naught Be All Else

“Naught be all else to me, save that thou art.”

Don’t be anything else to me, but who you are. Almost two weeks ago (looks like this series will be more spread out than I thought), we talked about what it looks like to invite Jesus to be the Lord of our heart. Today I see this part of the hymn as a cry of the heart: “Who you are is more than enough for me, Jesus.”

Is Jesus enough for you?

I have experienced seasons of my life where my vision was blurred and where I believed that Jesus wasn’t enough for me. Where I forgot who He was and what He had done. Where the wonder wore off and the excitement and passion faded. In those seasons I suffered greatly under the lie that other things would bring me satisfaction and fulfillment and peace.

As Jason and I have led small groups these last few years, we’ve seen the same lie take root in the hearts of some of the people we love. It’s devastating to watch someone who previously loved Jesus, who proclaimed His goodness and grace, fall into the web of lies that Satan weaves and to exchange the goodness of God for a false god. Just like in the garden with Eve, the Father of Lies comes and whispers, “Did God really say…?”

And the doubt begins. Did God really say He would be with you? Did God really promise hope and joy and peace? He’s withholding ______ from you. He’ll never come through. You should go for it on your own.

Jesus, today my prayer is that each day I would take the time to study and remember and talk about who you are. What you accomplished on my behalf. The lengths that you went to in order that I would be yours. Your perfect and finished work on the cross. How focused and faithful you were. That my affections would be stirred for YOU and that knowing you would cause me to love you with all my heart. You are enough. You are more than enough. 

“Naught be all else to me save that thou art.”

Is Jesus enough for you? If you don’t “feel” like He is, what truth about Him do you need to discover or be reminded of today? I submit to you that you’re not lacking a sufficient Savior, but lacking sufficient knowledge in your head and heart about who He is. Praying that today those gaps will be filled. 

day 1: O, Lord of My Heart

Day 1 O Lord of My Heart

God, you instruct us to keep our heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life. You warn us that the heart is deceitful above all things. And you are a God that looks in on and tests the heart. LORD, we want to love you with all our heart. Help us to see in very real and practical ways what that means today. We commit this time to you in Jesus’ good name. Amen.

Good morning! I’m so excited to start this series with you. God is challenging me, and I pray He will do the same for you.

“O, Lord of my heart.”

What does that even mean? What does it look like for Jesus to be LORD of your heart? Of my heart? “Lord” in Hebrew is ‘adon and means “one possessed of absolute control.” In the Old Testament, Jehovah has been translated in English as LORD with all capitals. Jehovah is the proper name of the God of the Hebrews. (Bible Study Tools) Side note: Adonai was the plural of ‘adon and the Jews were so serious about revering God, that they would say Adonai whenever they came across the word Jehovah in Scripture. Now that’s a respect and understanding of the “LORD,” isn’t it? So what does it look like to have Jesus as the one “possessed of absolute control” of your heart? To have the God of the Hebrews as Lord of your heart? 

We’ve all heard the saying “Follow your heart”, right? This is actually a SUPER dangerous piece of advice. The reality is that our hearts are “deceitful above all things and desperately sick.” (Jeremiah 17:9) Whoa! Those are serious words. Jeremiah sticks an exclamation point on the end of the verse by saying, “Who can understand it?” If we are honest with ourselves, I think we know that our hearts are sick. No matter how hard we try to be good and to love others well and to be humble and selfless and disciplined, our hearts lead us astray. We fail and instead of worshipping God, we worship idols. Idols are anything (good or bad) that are put in the place of God. They are anything that we worship as lower case “l” lord instead of worshiping Jehovah, God. Idols are broken gods that have no real power to redeem, satisfy or save us. For this reason, God instructs us to guard our heart “with all vigilance.” (Proverbs 4:23)

In the New Testament, we see a Pharisee who also happened to be a lawyer approach Jesus to test him with a question. He said, “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?” How did Jesus respond to that question? Do you remember? “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” (Matthew 22:34-40).

Here’s what I propose to you today: The way to “keep your heart” is to “love the LORD with all your heart.” It’s not about stopping certain behaviors. Instead, it’s about making SO MUCH of the person of Jesus that other things either fall away (sin and idols) or bow before God falling second in line (good things that have become god things). Worshipping Jesus as Lord makes Him Lord of our hearts. Kinda simple, huh?

If I’m honest, my heart most frequently leads me astray to worship beauty. I have a deeply embedded lie in my heart that I will be MOST happy when I am thin, well dressed, well put together (hair, nails + makeup). From this false belief, I strive. I’m inundated with this message and often exhibit behaviors to compound this lie (shows I watch, people I follow on social media, etc). I find two things to be true any time I’m striving after anything with my whole heart other than the Lord. I encounter one of two extremes: pride or despair.

Pride of heart says: “Oooo-weeee! Look at me! I’ve arrived. I have it all together. I’m beautiful and thin and well put together. Look out world, here I come.” My nose is high in the air and I consider myself to be the center of it all. After all, I’m awesome. (ew, even writing it out sounds gross)

Despair of heart says: “Woe is me. I’ve failed. Again. No surprise there. I haven’t exercised in two weeks. I look a mess today (just like yesterday). My husband doesn’t find me attractive and why would he? I’ll never lose these 10 lbs.” I’m naval gazing and I am a second-class citizen.

And what do you do with that? Where do you go with your pride? With your despair? I want to get insanely practical here with you and with God.  We sing, “Be thou my vision, O, Lord of my heart.” We want that. We mean it when we sing it. But what does it mean to live with Jesus as Lord of our hearts on a daily basis? God knows our hearts. He knows that we are calling him, “Lord, Lord,” while placing other things higher than Him. So what does it look like to keep your heart with vigilance in a way that _(fill in the blank)_ is no longer the lower case “l” lord of your heart, but Jesus alone is capital “L” Lord of your heart? For me, what does it look like for my false god of beauty to bow before the One True God?

I submit to you that we first need to discover what it is that we are seeking from the lower case “l” lord that can ONLY be found in Jesus, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

Read that again if it didn’t resonate the first time.

My lower case “l” lord is beauty. What’s yours?

I’ve had to really process through this with Jesus before submitting it to you. I want Him to show me what I’m seeking from other things that I can only find in Him. So…If my heart defaults toward worshipping beauty instead of Jesus, what am I looking for in beauty that I can only truly find in Christ?

This week in church we read from John 1. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not anything made that was made.” (John 1: 1-3) Jesus, the “Word”, is eternal Creator God. He has always existed, and everything that has ever existed was made through Him. “All things were made through Him.” Psalm 27:4 says, “On thing I have asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple.”

Wanna know where following my heart leads? Following my heart leads to exchanging the beautiful glory of Creator God for created things. What I am searching for in my own beauty or in the beauty of people or things, can actually ONLY and FULLY be satisfied by gazing upon the beauty of God. He made it all. And yet, instead of worshipping Him for making it, I’m worshipping the created thing. How foolish! Do you see how much I’m settling? Why worship the painting? Yes! Appreciate it! Spend time gazing at it from a dozen different angles! Talk about the light and the depth and color and technique! Look at the control and discipline of each brush stroke! But at the end of the day, celebrate the ARTIST. Without the artist, there would be no painting. Apart from the ARTIST, the painting ceases to exist.

Here are four questions for you to spend some time journaling through. The first two are mine, the second two are directly from Jesus’ mouth:

Where does your heart most frequently lead you astray?

What are you looking for in your lower case “l” lord that can only be found in Christ?

“But who do you say that I am?” (Mark 8:29)

“Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you?” (Luke 6:46)

My answers look like this:

  1. My heart frequently leads me astray to make beauty lord.
  2. I’m looking for security and comfort and love in human beauty instead of finding those things in Christ.
  3. I say that you are Creator God—perfect and radiant in beauty. You are more beautiful than all created things and in fact, in you and through you all beautiful things were made. Only through worshipping your beauty will I find satisfaction, security, comfort and love. My beauty is fleeting, has no bearing on my identity or value in Christ, and brings no lasting comfort. You love me as I am. I am enough in Christ.
  4. Forgive me, Lord for making beauty lord of my heart instead of you. Forgive me for calling you Lord, but continuing to demonstrate unbelief in this area. Thank you for using your Word to convict me and to bring me to repentance. My heart breaks over my idolatry, but I am comforted in knowing that if we confess our sins,  you are faithful and just to forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9). Help me to keep my heart with all vigilance and to mean it when I call you “Lord of my heart.”

I’d like to invite you to spend a few minutes agreeing with God in prayer and worship before you journal:

I’m honored to fight this battle with you, my brother/sister in Christ. There is grace for us. So much grace. When you worship idols, repent. When your heart leads you astray, repent. When you believe lies, repent. Ask God to help guard your heart. Ask Him to teach you how to love Him with all your heart. My prayer for you today and every day is that Jesus alone would be Lord of your heart. Until next time!

be thou my vision.

xoxo, kate

be thou my vision 21 day blog series

be thou my vision
*click to hear my best friend, Christina Bishop sing this hymn*
I’d like to extend an invitation for you to join me over the next few weeks as we take a look at recalibrating our vision. If you’re anything like me, you struggle to keep Jesus central to all that you do throughout each day. There are so many things vying for our focus, so I’m taking the challenge WITH YOU to ask Jesus to be my vision and to help me cast aside the things that hinder me from following Him all the day long.

I want to be a wife and mom and friend and church member and business woman that can do all that she’s called to do, but with a vision of Christ in the center of it all.

So if you’re in, I invite you to click on the photo above which links to my best bud, Christina Bishop, singing “Be Thou My Vision.” This song will be included in the post for each day with the hope that you would play it first to get your heart and mindset in a place of worship as you recalibrate for the day. There will be 21 posts over the course of the next few months or so. I’m writing as and when I can. I want this to be as the Spirit leads and  I’m really excited to spend this time with Jesus and with each of you.

Here’s a preview of where we’re going:

day 1: O, Lord of My Heart
day 2: Naught Be All Else
day 3: Thou My Best Thought
day 4: Waking or Sleeping
day 5: My Wisdom + Thou My True Word
day 6: I Ever With Thee + Thou With Me
day 7: Thy My Great Father
day 8: I, Thy True Son
day 9: Thou In Me Dwelling
day 10: Riches I Heed Not
day 11: Man’s Empty Praise
day 12: Thou Mine Inheritance
day 13: Thou Only First In My Heart
day 14: My Treasure Thou Art
day 15: My Victory Won
day 16: May I Reach Heaven’s Joys
day 17: O, Bright Heaven’s Sun
day 18: Heart of My Own Heart
day 19: Whatever Befall
day 20: Still Be My Vision
day 21: O, Ruler of All

xoxo, kate


Jason and I had a really powerful conversation this morning. While I’d like to say we have them all the time, we don’t. Making the gospel a practical part of every day life and every day talk is still new to us.  We need practice. And training. And heaps of grace.  

I’ve been reading “Because He Loves Me: How Christ Transforms Our Every Day Life” by Elyse Fitzpatrick. Here’s an excerpt that helps better explain what I’m getting at:

“…even though we believe the gospel, the occasions in which the gospel (the incarnation, sinless life, death, bodily resurrection, and ascension of the Son of God) actually intersect and powerfully affect our daily life are infrequent.” 

I know Jesus died for me, but what does that mean on a Tuesday afternoon when my computer is freezing and Charlie just pooped on the carpet {again!} and the water has just boiled over and Liam’s drawing on the wall? What then of the cross, oh ye of little faith?

The gospel is as relevant then as it is at tragic news or deep sin or shocking crisis. But we seem to know the relevance when the weightier things take place. And not so much when the every day disappointments do. 

But if Christ wants and cares about all of me, and died for all my sin, then I want to know how to bring all of me to Him. Today we talked about what that looks like. Jason and I. 

One of us messed up. Plans changed and didn’t look how we wanted them to look for the day. So attitude ensued and a cold shoulder made its grand debut. Sin. What could easily look like mere “frustration” was actually pride rearing its ugly head. Almighty Self and Almighty Plans had gotten assigned a back seat to rainy campground and new agenda. And that wasn’t going to be okay. 

Normally we would have either let it go or brushed over it with an apology, but this morning we talked about it in light of the gospel and what resulted was very profound (tears and repentance profound) to me. When said “offender” was confronted with “What do you think God is trying to teach you in this” by the offended, the answer was so telling:

“I don’t know. That I need to do better.”

“Where is there room for the gospel in that?”

“I don’t know.”

When pressed further with the question, “What are you hearing right now?”, the response was:

“You’re stupid. You shouldn’t have responded that way. You failed again. Just like always.”

Crazy, right? Isn’t that an incredibly sad response for someone who knows Jesus and talks about the gospel with great frequency? But therein lies my point. And also the reason why I didn’t say who was the offender or who was offended. It could be either Jason OR I depending on the day. 

Elyse calls it “identity amnesia.” She asks, “in your pursuit of godliness have you left Jesus behind?” 

In other words, are you resting solely on works and performance to do it better next time and therefore {hopefully} attain salvation or Christ’s love? Our conversation this morning indicates that practically speaking, the answer would be YES!

But the GOOD NEWS of the gospel is that it is finished. Christ’s perfect life, death and resurrection completed the work that I could not complete on my own. And therefore frees me to say, “I’m sinful. I wanted today to go how I wanted it to go because I like to make things all about me for my glory. I’m so sorry for the way I treated you because of my sin. Would you please forgive me?”

And voila. Grace. Always from God and hopefully quickly from other believers. 

As I sit and write this, I’m alone on the beach. The waves here on the Pacific Coast are fierce and relentless. They have been crashing, LOUD, this entire time I’ve been writing. They keep coming. Without fail. Behind each wave is an ocean of waves. 

Behind each of God’s waves of grace is an ocean of grace. 

Because He loves us so. Do you need to hear that today? Will you believe that today? Just as the stones on this beach are smooth and shiny from being tossed by those waves again and again—God’s grace makes us smooth like Him. As we respond more quickly in repentance and receive His grace, we find freedom and joy. 

May you find joy in Christ today. 

It’s essential for us to think about God’s love today because it is only his love that can grant us the joy that will strengthen our hearts, the courage that will embolden us in our fight against sin, and the assurance that will enable us to open up our lives to him so that he might deal powerfully with our unbelief and idolatry. If we’re not completely convinced that his love is ours right now-fully and unalterably ours-we’ll always hide in the shadows, focusing on our performance, fearing his wrath. Prayer will be hard because we won’t want to approach him or be transparent before him. Witnessing will be a chore, for who would want to talk to others about a god who is demanding, angry, or cold? If we don’t consciously live in the light of his love, the gospel will be secondary, virtually meaningless, and Jesus Christ will fade into insignificance. Our faith will become all about us, our performance, and how we think we’re doing, and our transformation will be hindered. What must we remember? Simply that God loves us so much that he crushed his Son so that we might be his and that this love isn’t based on our worthiness or performance. His love doesn’t fluctuate from day-to-day. It was settled the moment he set it upon you before the foundation of the world. God has spoken to us about his love and the gospel in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” Will that love transform the way you live today?
-Elyse Fitzpatrick

Here’s to the gospel impacting every moment of every day. Happy Sunday. 

Be Thou My Vision.

image1 (2)IMG_3985

Have you ever watched a storm roll in over the water?

I’m talking about really watching it roll in. Sitting there as it slowly creeps across the water. Being still with no distractions. Just silently and patiently watching the clouds roll in. Have you ever done that?

I hadn’t. Until Tuesday.

I felt the Lord calling me away to be still. I felt Him telling me to ask Him, “Be thou my vision.” So I went to my favorite spot overlooking the water. It’s where I come when I feel like He needs to talk to me without distractions.

So I pulled in and parked. And I played this song. When I first parked, I took a picture. And I posted it with the caption: “Be thou my vision.” If you follow me on Instragram, you saw it. This is one of my all time favorite songs. So I sat there and sang it. The whole time I was singing, I was fixated on something in the distance across the water. Then something happened.

When I first pulled in, I could see far into the distance. In fact, if you look closely at the picture on the left, not only can you see land all the way down on both sides of the Sound, but you can also see mountains in the distance. “Be thou my vision.” I focused on the mountains and asked me what He wanted me to see.

And then it started to roll in. The storm. The grey clouds so thick and ominous. The kind of clouds that distinctly have rain pouring down in lines. So I sat very still and watched. My windows were closed and no one was around. All I could hear was my own breathing. First, the mountains in the distance disappeared. The outline of each peak grew dim, and then dimmer, and then suddenly they were no longer visible. “Interesting, Lord. Be thou my vision.

So in my heart I listened.

I thought that only the mountains were going to disappear. And that He was going to have a lesson for me in that. But the powerful storm continued to roll in. Slowly, the next furthest land mass disappeared. And then the shore of the next. And the next. The fog was rolling in across the water, concealing everything I had first observed. Finally, the rain and fog began covering the shore closest to where I was parked. I could literally see the green trees disappearing before my eyes in a line–as if they were being painted white, or as if a curtain was being closed. “Be thou my vision.”

And within maybe a half hour’s time it was all gone. Everything I had seen when I first got there was gone. No Sound view, no coastline, no land, no mountains in the distance. All I could see was a little sailboat and a few hundred yards of water in front of me. “Be thou my vision.” If I had pulled up to park at that very moment, a stranger to the view and the park, I would have had NO idea that there was land out there. Or an entire channel of water. Or mountains in the distance. No evidence whatsoever.

I found it ironic that the Lord called me away with a specific prayer on my heart for him to “be my vision” and then He completely obscured my vision.

Have you ever had that happen? You prayed for something, and the exact OPPOSITE happened? Had your clarity turn to muddy obscurity? What I’m trying to say, is have you ever asked the Lord for something that He didn’t answer in the way you anticipated? If you are human, I would assume your answer is “YES!”

So what do you do with that?

I’d like to propose that we ONLY have two options. We really can only grow closer to God in faith and trust, or we can drift away in bitterness and disappointment. Which characterizes you?

Let’s start with the latter. “We can drift away in bitterness and disappointment.” Lord, I asked you to be my vision. You obscured my view. You don’t hear me. You don’t care about me. You don’t love me. You are not trustworthy. You are not safe. You are not good.

Therefore, I will seek my OWN happiness and find my OWN satisfaction in _______. Fill in the blank. My spouse. My kids. My job. My beauty. Fitness. Travel. Money. Pleasure. Food. Alcohol. Drugs. Sex. Music. Art. Cooking. Education.

I relate to this. Many of you don’t know this, but my heart has been grieved that it has been so difficult for us to have a family. Liam is a miracle (take a look around the blog if you don’t know the story). We shouldn’t even have him. And it feels ungrateful to say that we’ve struggled with wanting more children and not being able to have them. But we have. It’s difficult to desire siblings for your child and know that medicine and science say you cannot conceive. We know there are other options. We love adoption. We love embryo adoption. But it has been on our heart to pray for a miracle, and to that end we’ve prayed. And the fog rolled in. The answer we hoped for hasn’t happened. So what did I do?

I pressed hard into other things. My relationships. My work. Busyness. Why? Out of fear. That the fog meant God didn’t really love me. That He didn’t really care about our family. That He wasn’t really good. Just like the serpent in the garden, Satan has been whispering to me, “Did God really say…?”

And God knew. And He called me away with Him on Tuesday.

To whisper gently to me. To remind me—the storm isn’t what He wants me to focus on. The storm obscures the view. But I have had an unobstructed view of the glory and goodness of God and the presence of the clouds doesn’t change what I know exists in the distance.

Did you get that?

“The presence of the clouds doesn’t change what I know exists in the distance.” Before the clouds rolled in, those mountains were REAL. I saw them. I did not doubt their presence. I did not question their existence. The clouds were the distraction. The diversion. But the mountains were still there.

Before Liam was, God. Before we wanted to grow our family, God. Before we were married, God. Before I ever even had a desire to be a mother, God. “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.” {Hebrews 13:8} For one million reasons, I have tasted and seen that the Lord is good and have been blessed by taking refuge in Him {Psalm 34:8}. I know that better is one day in God’s courts than a thousand elsewhere {Psalm 84:10}. He has been so good to me. “The Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.” {Psalm 145:8} I love Jesus, guys. His established presence in my life is a certain as the existence of those mountains in the distance.

Because God.

So option one is where I land: “Grow closer to God in faith and trust.” What a privilege it is to stand on the promises of God as opposed to being swayed by the storms of circumstance. It APPEARS that the mountains are gone. It APPEARS that all that exists is what I can see right in front of me. But what appears and what IS are two completely different things. The truth is, that God is. And we have the true gift of continuing in faith, even when our sight fails us.

“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” {Hebrews 11:1} I don’t know why we can’t just have more children. Why it’s not as easy as saying, “We’re going to plan to have a baby next summer.” But I know this. Jesus is worthy of my complete and undivided worship. He loved me while I was yet in sin. “But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” {Romans 5:8} My hope is not in my future family, or my circumstances. The only place where my hope is secure is in Christ. “We hope in the glory of God. “Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. And the result is this: a tested genuineness of our faith. Worth more than gold.

“In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith — more precious than gold that perishes through it is tested by fire — may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” {1 Peter 1:6-7}

A faith that is steadfast in storms {Matthew 7:24-27} that is NOT contingent on circumstances or on God delivering what we want when we want it. Lord, forgive us for our unbelief. For our impatience. For being demanding and ungrateful and for saying that we know better than you.

This is me sticking my STAKE IN THE GROUND and saying, “though he slay me, yet I will hope in him.” {Job 13:15} It’s me saying, “Be thou my vision.” I don’t want what I SEE to be my vision. I want Him to be my vision.

Join me, friend.

I challenge you to have a faith that is not contingent on your circumstances. To see past the fog and remember that the mountains are there. God is there. And He is worthy of your continued trust. He is good.

And He MUST be our vision.

To ALL the Mommas

Today Liam was SCREAMING and throwing the biggest tantrum of his life because I made him come inside while I fixed lunch. He had no idea that I was literally making him the yummiest gourmet cheese sandwich on specialty sourdough with turkey bacon tucked inside OR that I was going to bring him back outside the MINUTE I was finished. For inconsolable poor Liam—because he didn’t know the future—his life, as he knew it was over. In that moment, God reminded me that His ways are always higher than my ways. That He is good and that He is always aware of what’s coming, what I most need, and what the future holds. He is also infinitely patient with me when I am throwing the biggest temper tantrums of my life.

The LORD is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.

{Psalm 145:8}

Something the Lord has been impressing on my heart lately in daily moments with my sweet little boy {I mean that sincerely}, is that He wants me to press into the daily moments to find Him. To see His own Father heart for me. To learn more about how He loves me and guides me and cares for me. To surrender control and know that He is ultimately in control. To know that He will never leave me or forsake me. And even to know that when He disciplines me {when the road is hard or takes an unexpected turn} that He does it because He loves me enough to not leave me the same way He found me.

This Mother’s Day I’m thankful that I get to be a mom. That the Lord uses my time as a mom to point me to Him in the ways my soul most deeply needs to know Him or feel Him. Motherhood is such a gift. I never knew if I would be a mom and our road to get here was paved with trial, loss, financial struggle, and many many tears. I rejoice that I get to celebrate Mother’s Day with so many other amazing moms out there. And I weep with many of my mom friends that are not sure if their dreams of motherhood will ever come to fruition. I see you. I hear you. I love you. I pray for you. To my friends that are missing their moms tomorrow—that have a hole in their hearts or an empty seat at the table—I pray that peace that passes understanding would guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

If I could hug you all tomorrow I would. Happy Mother’s Day, everyone.

Here’s the one that makes me a Mama:

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Forget Not All His Benefits

Feel free to push play and turn the volume ALL THE WAY UP before you read.

There are certain mornings, days, weeks, seasons when I need to remember. Where I need to be reminded of the gospel and character and heart of God. Life has been so BUSY lately. I have a beautiful toddler that is ON. THE. MOVE. I have a business that is rocking and rolling. It’s been a beautifully difficult season for our church family. In the midst of all the busyness, I’ve been under attack about who I am as a woman and child of God. So I needed a solid reminder this morning.

It’s here. In black and white. EVERYTHING I needed to remember.

  • You forgive ALL my iniquity
  • You heal ALL my diseases
  • You redeem my life from the pit
  • You crown me with steadfast love and mercy
  • You satisfy me with good
  • You renew my youth like the eagle’s
  • You work righteousness and justice for ALL who are oppressed
  • You make your way known to me
  • You are merciful and gracious
  • You are slow to anger and abounding in STEADFAST love
  • You will not always chide or keep your anger forever
  • You do not deal with me according to my sins
  • You do not repay me according to my iniquities
  • Your steadfast love for me is as high as the heavens are above the earth
  • You remove my transgressions as far as the east is from the west
  • You show compassion on me as a father shows compassion to his children
  • You know my frame
  • Your steadfast love for me is from everlasting to everlasting

The LORD has established his throne in the heavens, and his kingdom rules over all. (Psalm 103:19)

When I forget ALL your benefits, help me remember. All that you do. All that you are. And let me KNOW that your kingdom RULES over all. Right now.

Bless the LORD, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless his holy name! (Psalm 103:1)

Gallbladerless Gal

*** {Warning, Post Op Photo} ***

So somewhere on the way to the weekend I lost my gallbladder. Okay. Well not somewhere. In operating room 4 at Tacoma General. But that’s sorta how I feel.

Started the week out normally. Breakfast and coffee with some friends. And then BAM.

Gallbladder attack.

I was in the ER by Monday evening being diagnosed with gallstones. Before they diagnosed me I did a whole heck of a lot of puking and crying and writhing in pain. In fact, the pain sent me into a full blown panic attack and I lost sensation in my arms, legs and face. Breathe, Kate. Breathe. I did get to hear a guy doing some sort of illegal drug or money deal on the waiting room public phone, though. That was entertaining.

They sent me home with some pain meds and said it would most likely happen again. {So buckle up?} They were right. The pain persisted.

So we went back in to the ER on Thursday morning at 9:30am. They gave me some pain meds and ordered another ultrasound. The results came back by 11:50 and then we sat. And sat. And sat. Our nurse, who was a little too cool for school {and never even introduced himself}, told us at noon that the results were back. It took two hours to get the doctor to read them and the surgeon was never even contacted until we kept pushing.

We finally saw the surgeon at 5:15. He asked, “Why am I just getting this now?” Great question. We fired our nurse and got a new one. He was great even though he was a WSU fan. He got me meds, dinner, water, and happiness. He even told us a story about his grandpa meeting his grandma at a military dance in Boston in 1940 during the war. When his g-pa went back home to WA he sent his lady love a train ticket and asked her to marry him. She came. And she married him! He musta had some mad skillz on the dance floor! I also got to FaceTime and make piggy faces with this little stud muffin:


I digress.

During that time I was given toradol for my nausea and headache. It gave me a horrifying panic attack. Suddenly I felt trapped. I wanted to rip my IV out and run. I felt like I was dropped off at a summer camp I didn’t really want to be at and I couldn’t leave. I felt like my surgery was hours and an eternity away and like I was certainly going to die in the morning. No joke. It was awful. I started crying and Jason was trying to understand, but explaining it made me even more panicked so I just had to close my eyes and pray and try to sleep. Holy crapola.

I woke up feeling a little more calm but still anxious. They finally got us a room upstairs and we were transported there by “The Transporter!” Isn’t that a movie title? Surprisingly the transporter just brought us to a plain looking hospital room and not another dimension. I got situated up there and tried to sleep in between tons of interruptions.

It reminded me a lot of our extended stay at the “Hilton General” when I was pregnant with Liam. How I did that for forty-four days is so far beyond my comprehension and so deeply a testament to God’s amazing grace. Because even one night and I was OVER IT! Nothing like someone “knock-knocking” on your door every few hours in the middle of the night. And why do we say “knock-knock” while simultaneously knock-knocking? Oh to be woken up to have IV’s ripped out of one location and jammed into another at 11:30 pm.

My surgery was supposed to be at 8am. 8 came and went and I started to get anxious that we wouldn’t get a spot. But shortly after 8:30 my beautiful and kind surgeon came in and introduced herself and said we would be going back soon. Some nurses came about a half hour later, got me prepped, waited while Jason prayed over me, and then wheeled me to the OR.

That’s a different world, entirely, isn’t it? So stark and bright and white and cold. My nurse was very sweet. And then I met my anesthesiologist. Sneaky ninja was talking to me about the Dolphins and the Seahawks and then he said, you’ll start feeling your medicine about mid-sentence and then drift off to sleep. “Okay doct-” Zzzzzz.

And then I was with Tracy in the recovery room. Getting Vasoline on my lips and ice chips and talking about Baby Liam and counting down the time until they’d bring me back to Jason. The surgery was laparoscopic, they made four small incisions and I was home by 4pm. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. I’m in some decent pain today so I called the nurses line and they upped my dose. And that’s all she wrote!

Last Saturday I had my gallbladder. This Saturday I am the Gallbladderless Gal. Who knew? Here’s a pic for the not weak of heart {I actually don’t think it’s that bad!}


Prune Us!

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I got this message today from a friend that loves Jesus. She does not go to my church, but she knows what is going on and took the time to write this to me. It was SUCH an encouragement. It means so much to know there are SO many praying for us and rooting for Jesus to lovingly prune us back so that we can be healthy.

“Healthy things grow, growing things change and change will always bring challenge. God’s pruning, though painful at times, is necessary for our growth. You were on my heart as I worked in the garden this morning. If anyone makes man their god they will be shaken when man falls, but those who serve vigorously with a pure heart will stay rooted like a tree planted by the river’s edge shouting: ‘I shall not be moved.’ Do not allow man to move you out of position. God sees you and what is for you will still be. Let the walls crumble around you as you kneel praying, ‘Worthy! God in all you are still worthy!’ I do not like to cut back flowers. They ‘look’ so beautiful but they become overgrown and out of control and the root system can become suffocated. While it appears healthy, if not pruned it will die. Praying for you during this seasons of growth. Love you, my friend.”

In the Valley

To My Mars Hill Family:

Near and far. Past and present. At closing churches and at ones hanging on. To those that have stayed and fight on for Jesus’ legacy through our church…

I love you with my whole heart.

In the valley, Oh God, you’re near
In the quiet, Oh God, you’re near
In the shadow, Oh God, you’re near
At my breaking, Oh God, you’re near

Oh God, you never leave my side
Your love will stand firm for all my life

In my searching, Oh God, you’re near
In my wandering, Oh God, you’re near
When I feel alone, Oh God, you’re near
At my lowest, Oh God, you’re near

Height nor depth nor anything else
Could pull us apart
We are joined as one by your blood
Hope will rise as we become more
Than conquerors through
The one who loved the world


Listen here.

On Comfort and Conviction

“…the LORD is a God of knowledge, and by him actions are weighed.” {1 Samuel 2:3b}

“For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.” {1 Samuel 16:7}

I find both comfort and conviction in these verses.

Comfort. “A state of physical ease and freedom from pain or constraint. The easing or alleviation of a person’s feelings of grief or distress.” {Google Definition}

I am currently in a season where it is comforting to know that the LORD sees the heart of man. That HE is a God of knowledge that weighs all actions, that knows all motivations, that looks straight in on the heart. This is reassuring to me as I wait patiently on the LORD to answer questions that I have. I find peace in knowing that the “Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.” And here it is AGAIN: “He who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.”

These two verses close with a third verse. In it is a very certain promise: “We know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who were called according to his purpose.” {Romans 8:26-28, emphasis mine}

There is comfort in the uncertainty and comfort in the waiting. Comfort is there for me if I look for it and if I ask for it. I am crying out for comfort right now. I want to be comforted by the knowledge that HE knows and that HE sees and that HE helps. He is in CONTROL. Here’s the context of the very first verse that I posted at the beginning:

“My heart exults in the LORD; my strength is exalted in the LORD. My mouth derides my enemies, because I rejoice in your salvation. There is none holy like the LORD; there is none besides you; there is no rock like our God. Talk no more very proudly, let not arrogance come from your mouth; for the LORD is a God of knowledge, and by him actions are weighed. The bows of the mighty are broken, but the feeble bind on strength. Those who were full have hired themselves out for bread, but those who were hungry have ceased to hunger. The barren has borne seven, but she who has many children is forlorn. The LORD kills and brings to life; he brings down to Sheol and raises up. The LORD makes poor and makes rich; he brings low and exalts. He raises the poor from the dust; he lifts the needy from the ash heap to make them sit with princes and inherit a seat of honor. For the pillars of the earth are the LORD’s and on them he has set the world.” {1 Samuel 2:1-8}

Lest I fear, let me be reminded that the earth and everything in it is the LORD’s. {Psalm 24:1}

Lest I doubt, let me be reminded that it is God who sets up and tears down. {Job 12}

Lest I worry, let me be still and know that He is God. {Psalm 46:10}

There is comfort in the midst of fear, doubt and worry.

Here’s the second piece. Conviction. Knowing that the LORD is a God of knowledge that searches hearts brings conviction.

Conviction. “The work of the Holy Spirit that brings godly sorrow over sin.” {my definition based on sermons and Scripture}

This brings me to my knees asking God to “Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting!” {Psalm 139:23-24} If you know me, you know I use WAY too many exclamation points in my posts, emails and messages! I’m aware of it! I really am! And I’m working on it. See? But in all seriousness, when you find three sentences IN A ROW in the Bible with exclamation points, it’s time to pause and ponder. These verses were written with both passion and desperation. To be searched. To be tested. To be tried. To be led away from any and every grievous way of thinking. Search me! Know me! Try me! Know my thoughts! See if there is any grievous way in me! And lead me away from it and after you!

In seasons of pain. In seasons of confusion. In seasons of difficulty. I NEED Him to test and try me. I am convicted to not grow bitter {Hebrews 12:15}. To not lose heart {2 Corinthians 4:16}. To not assign motives to others without first checking my own {Matthew 7:1-5}. To not speak on things of which I have no knowledge {Job 38:1-2}. To not gossip or slander or speak foolishly {Proverbs 10:18}. To be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger {James 1:19}. To weigh my words {Ecclesiastes 5:2}. To test the spirits {1 John 4:1}. To not throw stones {John 8:7}. To rejoice with those that rejoice and to weep with those that weep {Romans 12:15}. It is from this place of both comfort and conviction that I can continue to seek wisdom, discernment, and answers to hard questions asked in love with pure motives.

I am convicted to keep on praying. Lord, let me pray more than I talk! Lord, hear my prayer that we might be ONE striving side by side for the gospel!

“Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in ONE spirit, with ONE mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel.” {Philippians 1:27, emphasis mine}

I am convicted to TAKE HEART because He loves us, because He promises peace in tribulation. And because He has overcome the world. {John 16:33}



WA TEN Mtg 8:6:14

How Much


I started to try and type this post on Facebook and quickly realized that what is on my heart is longer than what I can fit in a post. And then I remembered my old familiar friend: mcmiracle. Life has been so crazy that I’ve not had time to get on here {as much as I’d like} and share my heart {like I used to so often back in the good old days}. In reality, I’m still living the good old {crazy} days. I’ve got a 17 month old walking and talking and stealing my heart every day. I’ve got a {full time?} Origami Owl business that is rocking and rolling. And I’ve got my hubsters and best friend here with me in the eye of this craze-storm.

But I miss writing. On here. To y’all.

So tonight I’m on here to do just that. My head is buzzing with excitement because I just came from a meeting with six of my team members. Caveat: I’m not going to try and sell you anything. Or ask you to join my team. Or build a pyramid with me. Or donate your blood or drink Kool-Aid. It’s safe to read on. 

I’m just really humbled and blown away by the women that I’m getting to work with on this team. These women are funny, and bright, and creative, and engaging, and loving, and kind, and passionate, and goofy, and selfless, and humble, and confident, and adventurous. I learn from them. I love being around them. I am energized by them.

When I sit with my team {whether in person like tonight or all on the phone for our calls}, I have these moments where it feels like every experience, training, job and relationship I’ve had in the past has led to that very moment. I see skills from teaching, coaching, sports, admin jobs, customer service jobs, creativity and marketing—it’s like they’ve all converged in one place at one time.

“Your journey has molded you…and it was exactly what it needed to be. Don’t think you’ve lost time. It took each and every situation you have encountered to bring you to the now. And now is right on time.”

-Asha Tyson

I’m seeing women do things they never thought they could do. I’m watching them pursue areas outside of their comfort zone. Talking to people they’d never talk to. Going to events they’d never go to. Opening doors of opportunity they never knew existed. I’m watching them coach and train and lead one another. I’m watching them share and learn and grow together. I’m seeing them help one another {with no direct benefit in return}. I’m seeing them laugh and share stories and create new memories together.

I get emotional when I type this: there were seasons of my life in the last 10 years when I didn’t know who I was or what I was meant to do or if I’d ever have an impact on anyone else on this planet. I really struggled to find what I loved to do. In it all, God has been faithful to me. He has stayed with me. He has worked for HIS good and my joy. He’s trained me and equipped me. While Origami Owl is not the be all/end all of who I am as a human, it is a perfect match for me. This job and this opportunity and mentoring and leading and sharing and going and doing—this fits me like a glove.

And I am filled to overflowing. My cup literally runneth over. And I needed to share to give glory to God and to publicly thank Him for allowing me this incredible privilege and opportunity to mentor and work with these women.

Thank you, Lord.

WA TEN Mtg 8:6:14


Yes. And Amen.

“What sort of man is this that even winds and sea obey him?” (Matthew 8:27)

The disciples marveled. You had just previously called the disciples to follow you, despite the cost. You were honest that following you would not be easy. Then they followed you onto a boat. Then the boat got hit by a huge storm.

They freaked out and you slept.

Ultimately they freaked because they had little faith that you were in control; whereas you slept because you were fully confident that your Father was in control. “Perfect love casts out fear.” (1 John 4:18)

Where there is mature (maturing) faith, there is no fear (quicker repentance from fear). What can be done to me that my Father has not seen and allowed and ordained as a part of His perfect will for me?


The God that neither slumbers nor sleeps will never be caught off guard by my circumstances. I never have any cause for fear.


Because I trust in you I will never be put to shame. You will never forsake me or abandon me. Whether you allow the waves or rebuke the waves…

Yes. And Amen.

Increase my faith, Lord.

Happy 1 Year Due Date Day!

Yesterday we celebrated what would have been Liam’s One Year Birthday, or his “due date day.” He actually turned one on March 2nd, but it was really fun to celebrate yesterday with some of our friends and family that prayed us through!

I know so many of you are included in that category but are far away, so I wanted to send you pictures and “invite” you into the party to celebrate with us. With each milestone in Liam’s life we are reminded just how blessed we are that he is here with us, that he is doing so well, and that we have a son!

Liam is an amazing little guy. He LOVES laughing and making us laugh. He loves our doggies and food and lights. He’s on the move—not quite walking but cruising along furniture to beat the band. He loves his Daddy and shrieks when he gets home. He’s traveled with us to New York to meet our family and friends back there that prayed for us and he’s seen his uncle graduate from College in California and has road tripped it to Portland and is about to road trip it to Colorado!

He’s the light of our life and we are really enjoying him and being his parents.

I also wanted to tell you about something we did yesterday to give back. While we were in the hospital on bed rest, we were blessed to work with a high risk OB clinic here in town. We are still in touch with that clinic and decided that in lieu of birthday gifts for Liam, we would donate lockets (pictured below) in Liam’s name to this clinic. The lockets will be given to parents dealing with pregnancy complications and/or loss.

This is near and dear to our hearts, as you know. I’m able to get the lockets at my cost (with my new business), so each one is only $25. If you are interested in donating a locket in Liam’s name, please email me at mckenziek37@yahoo.com. I can take a credit card over the phone. I plan on placing the order by Friday so Thursday is the cutoff to pay.

Thanks again everyone for all your support and prayers and love this past year and a half. It really takes a village and we have the best village! ;)

Love you all!