A DAY IN THE LIFE OF A MOM OF AN ACTOR
SCAR TISSUE OF THE HEART
CRUISE SHIP PICTURES
PARABLE OF THE BROKEN PLATE
TIME WELL SPENT
STAY OUT OF WAL-MART
MY BEAUTIFUL MOM
THE PUFFY TAIL DAY
GLASS BOWL MOMENTS | by Leah
Something happened today that has compelled me
to write this little diddy! I made a post on Facebook, sharing and venting
my humanity. And what I mean by this.. I was the not so perfect
"Preacher's Kid" as I usually, always seem to try to exemplify. Let me
I was sitting having coffee, as most of you
know, I do so very often, and this man, whom I do not know at all, began
doing something that just totally grossed me out. He began taking out some
lotion that was obviously a dermatologist type of special lotion and began
to apply it all over his arms, his neck, his face, etc...For those of you
who may not know, I notice absolutely every little detail in this thing
called life and am literally unable to tune things out. Just how my brain
works, which I will save for another really, really, long writing!!!
Anywhooooo...I was totally blown away that
this man was doing this in a public place where you eat and have coffee.
So...I vented it on FB! Like a regular person. And I decided, with my
phone on silent of course, to take a picture of him sitting there with his
lotion sitting right by his coffee. Yes, I posted that too!
It wasn't long after I posted the picture,
that I felt convicted by God to take it down. Mind you, I did not know
this man...and I kept his face out of the picture, and he had no idea that
I had posted a thing, but I knew in my heart. God began to speak to me
about that...So I made another post, to say I felt really bad about what I
had done, so I was deleting the picture.
Immediately after, I was chastised by a FB
"friend" of mine for being cruel to humanity...and that what I had done
was horrible. I went so far as to apologize to this person for
disappointing them, explaining that I am only human, and that I make
mistakes...but that I try with all of my might, through God's grace, to be
kind and do the right thing. Funny how God works. It is through this
experience, that I was led to write this...that goes back to my Romans
8:28 verse, that all things work together for good, to those who love God
and are called according to His purposes. Here I was, in the midst of a
very human moment, and then chastised for what I did, and yet, God still
was speaking to me and the Spirit was moving me to write. God is good that
way and so full of grace.
I ended up
blocking and removing this person from my friends list and here is why...I
want to share just what it feels like to be the daughter of a pastor and
worship leader. I myself write worship music, and have led worship the
majority of my adult life. But it does not mean I am perfect. I am just a
human being, saved by grace...there is the key, grace. It isn't easy
growing up in a glass bowl and hasn't been for any of my family. My
parents are amazing, incredible people. Full of unconditional love and
grace. Called to exemplify that, not only to their family, but to everyone
they come in contact with. I had the harsh awakening, as I left their home
and began on my own, that my parents were very rare and few and far
I began to discover that we, as human beings,
tend to be judgmental first and grace seems to be the very last road we
take. I can speak from some very harsh and real experiences, that grace is
the first road we all need to take with each other. There will be time,
after time, after time, we all make mistakes. We will hurt each other's
feelings, we will step on some toes, we will act like idiots, we will be
selfish. I know I have done and been all of these things. But I also know,
my heart longs to exemplify the unconditional love and grace of God in all
I do. I fail miserably at times, but I also know that it is God in me, who
is faithful to pick me up after those failures and to teach me, so I don't
repeat the same mistakes.
for some reason, you see me very, very, very human at times on FB or in
just every day life, remember this...Yes, I am a preacher's daughter, but
I am just one little person who is human. Just because I am a preacher's
kid that doesn't mean I am perfect at all. Don't judge me so harshly,
because I can promise you, I will be judging myself way more harshly than
you. It isn't easy to live in a glass bowl. Always in the back of my mind,
worrying that I have smudges on the glass, and that it isn't as shiny as
some of you may wish it to be. I am thankful though, that God gave my life
to me, just as it is. And I am thankful that during those "glass bowl
moments" it is my Heavenly Father's opinion of me that matters more than
anyone else's...and I know, that I know, that I know, He simply loves me
no matter what. God help us to be this way with each other.
© Copyright 2014 by Leah
Lanier. All rights reserved.
A DAY IN
THE LIFE OF A MOM OF AN ACTOR | by Leah Lanier
I am sitting
here in the quaint, locally owned restaurant, Eclectic, in North
Hollywood, and let me say, it has become a beautiful, friendly,
delicious, safe haven for me! I sit and wait on Tuesday's and
Friday's, 3 hours each day, as my daughter grows and learns,
stretches, pours into, fine tunes her craft, you name it, I sit. I
never really knew how difficult it was for me just to "sit" until
I have all the time in the world (well, 7
hours a week) to reflect back on life...to think. My life, in most
every way, has been devoted to that beautiful, big brown eyed
treasure, my daughter. I can remember back when I was pregnant with
her. God speaking to me clearly, that she was going to be raised out
of the box so to speak....differently. In an environment that was a
lifestyle of learning from life. Ever growing...always seeking, ever
learning, from every beautiful esthetic that life had to offer.
I created a world and refuge for her where
watercolors, pastels, Mozart, Alfred Hitchcock and Audrey Hepburn
lived and collided. She grew up learning about every kind of dinosaur,
digging outside as a paleontologist. She was a veterinarian to every
animal we ever had. She made movies of all of her dogs, convinced her
film would be the next Homeward Bound. She became an artist at a very
young age, and was commissioned by many, to create pet portraits,
which we shipped all across the United States. She made homemade dog
treats and recycled dog toys, which were shipped out all over as well.
I have watched as my creative little
genius has explored the world around her, searching for the spot that
God created just for her. Never quite feeling like she fit anywhere. I
have seen the tears, I have seen the shaking, as she went to
professional dog shows and stood in front of judges, terrified just to
stand there. I have witnessed my amazing, brave Asperger girl walk
down a runway as a beautiful poised model, in front of one of the most
well known agencies in the south. I have listened as her instructors
bragged about how she was the most poised, and graceful...knowing deep
down, the hurdles in which she is leaping over, are nearly
insurmountable. Her motor skills just were not the same as the girls
in her class, yet she was the one they would use as an example of how
to walk. I remember her practicing on the line of tape in the kitchen,
perfecting the graceful walk...one foot in front of the other,
conquering her fears.
I remember the many, many times she went
to take her written drivers test. Always making 100 on it at home,
and terrified when she had to take a test publicly. Over and over...
kept on persevering. She did not stop. I remember the tears of joy
when she passed...how she told me, "Mom, there is no other teenager in
this world, who appreciates my permit more than me...I am so
thankful", as the tears poured.
I remember the day she graduated at age
16. Determined to stand in her Grandmama and Papa's theater to give
her speech. She cried, she shook, but wow, how she delivered. Sharing
deep parts of who she is with so many, which was very much out of her
comfort zone. Trying to convey, just what it meant to walk a day in
her shoes...and how thankful to God she was for everything.
She has wandered through her young little life as a very old soul.
Understanding and grasping life in a way that it takes most a lifetime
to do...And now, she has found herself. Within the walls of a
beautiful, quaint, haven of a studio in North Hollywood. There she has
discovered where she feels most herself and at home in her own
skin...she feels a belonging...and when she stands on that stage, she
does not shake from fear, she does not cry from anxiety, she does not
hesitate to stand. She stands in her spot in life...she cries to
express herself within a scene...she shakes from the emotion of a
script. Her instructors use her as an example of living, breathing,
truth in acting. And she is believed by all who watch in awe of this
young girl who is just beginning.
So...Mama sits and waits. And I reflect
back on that precious little baby girl, who I knew was different in so
many beautiful ways. I reflect back and smile from the depths of my
soul, that now, I get to sit and wait, while my Anna rises to
greatness in the spot that is made just for her.
This is a day in the life of a mom of an
actor...and I am honored to live this day!
© Copyright 2014 by Leah
Lanier. All rights reserved.
SCAR TISSUE OF THE
HEART | by Leah Lanier
As I was
getting around this morning, trying to wake up, which I do NOT do so
easily, my mind began to think on so many things that I have been through
in this life. We do that ya know...as human beings, we just do. We
approach life from our own eyes so much of the time. We are just
self-oriented by nature and don't have the ability to think outside of our
own minds a lot of the time. So...as I reflected on my life, this is what
came to mind - Scar Tissue. Let me begin by the literal definition of what
scar tissue actually is… and talk about the wounds that bring about scar
Scars are areas of
fibrous tissue (fibrosis) that replace normal skin after injury. A scar
results from the biological process of wound repair in the skin and other
tissues of the body. Thus, scarring is a natural part of the healing
process. With the exception of very minor lesions, every wound (e.g.,
after accident, disease, or surgery) results in some degree of scarring.
An exception to this is animals with complete regeneration, which regrow
tissue without scars formation.
I am sure you all can
probably guess where I am going with this. But just humor me :) I am a
firm believer in this one simple thing...As I reflect back on things in my
life that I have been through, from my own point of view...I hope and pray
that as I share, others will gain some sort of positive through the
negative I have been through and experienced. It just makes all the junk
so much less painful and worth it if I can help just one person...just
one. Doesn't have to be a lot...one is plenty. :)
from injury and scars come from the wounds. I remember when I was in my
5th grade track meet! My daddy was there to see me, which was rare because
he routinely traveled on the road in music with his cool self, and guitar
going everywhere. I was so excited...my adrenaline was rushing...I was
running sprints (which I still do in life). Long story short...I took off,
skidding across the asphalt and my left scrawny knee took all of the hit!
My daddy ran out and scooped me up in his arms, carrying me and my bloody
knee into the school. Yes, I got a scar on my knee from that. It is still
here to this day, but that is not all that is with me from that
experience. My daddy carrying me in his arms is with me as well, tending
to his crying little daddy's girl and doctoring my knee. Good came from
that injury, good came from that scar. And now when I see that rough
little spot on my knee, I smile, remembering my daddy being there and
taking care of me.
As I grew up, the
scars from life were much deeper than my little track meet scar, as I am
sure so many experience when reality and life hits them. There are so many
kinds of scars...scars from friends walking away, scars from just plain 'ol
stupid immature decisions we make as we are trying to learn how to walk
through life, scars of betrayal, scars of mental, emotional, and physical
abuse, scars of broken promises and broken dreams. I could go on and on.
It seems that the
deepest wounds are wounds from a broken heart...which in turn cause the
greatest scar tissue. The scar tissue of the heart seems to become greater
and greater every time the heart is broken. Someone once told me..."Your
walls are taller and greater than anyone I know". Looking back, I now know
that it is scar tissue around my heart from injury after injury. I could
avoid this. I know how...just Don't love. Don't try. Don't think like Snow
White. Don't dream. Don't pursue. Don't desire. Don't feel. Don't, don't,
I thought it was
interesting in the definition of scar tissue what it said about some
animals...read that again - An exception to this is animals with complete
regeneration, which regrow tissue without scars formation.
So I have come to this
conclusion, instead of hiding and avoiding the injury and avoiding the
scar tissues of the heart, I will be like the animals with complete
regeneration! I will love. I will try. I will think like Snow White. I
will dream. I will pursue. I will desire. I will feel. I will, I will, I
And in time, I will
look back on my injuries with joy...because I will find the good that came
from them. Just as my daddy carried me off in his arms from my track meet,
God will enable my humanness to see that even during the midst of the
pain, the struggle, the wounds and the heartache, that He was carrying me
the entire time.
© Copyright 2014 by Leah
Lanier. All rights reserved.
CRUISE SHIP PICTURES | By Leah Lanier
Have you ever thought
about what is really behind those cheesy cruise ship pictures? Sorry if I
offended anyone. You may actually have some of your own, that you love and
adore, filled with precious memories.
guess what I am getting at is_ you never know truly what is in a picture.
That old saying, “Don’t judge a book by it’s cover”…I wish the rest
of the meaning was always said_, “Don’t judge a book by it’s cover,
because it’s what’s inside that counts”.
All too many times, we go into the homes of friends, loved ones, and
family members to see displays and displays of happy, cheesy pictures.
Most of the time, there is a fake background and they are dressed in fancy
clothes that were only bought for that occasion, with hair that looks
completely different than on a regular basis. They are all snuggled up and
sweet for the flash of the camera. We look and think to ourselves_
“Who is that?”
Or, we may even have pictures of that sort displayed in our own homes. We
walk by them everyday, thinking to ourselves, “I don’t even know who
those people are. They aren’t even real." We leave our homes to take
trips, vacations, getaways… and that is exactly what they are_ Getaways from our real everyday life,
because so many times our real everyday life
seems too unbearable. We need the idea of something different, something
removed, something that doesn’t remind us of the reality that we live in.
So, we book a week or two on a cruise ship with that significant other,
and hundreds of strangers. We sit and eat with them as if they were our
long, lost, best friends or family members. We talk of our bliss, our
joys, and our happiness. Why? Because 9 times out of 10, that’s the
reality we are longing to live... but just haven’t yet. It is all a
blissful facade, and is captured perfectly, in the cheesy cruise ship
But God has a different plan for our lives. To strip away the facade, the
fancy clothes, the fake hair, the idle chatter with strangers. He desires
to get to the heart of all of His children, to bring out what is real and
lasting. He desires for all of us to experience a true get away with Him.
A time of refreshing where He heals the brokenness of our lives and puts
the pieces back together. He desires for us to sit and fellowship with Him
at His table, where we can share in truth, without fear of reproach or
judgment. A vacation that is for a lifetime and that can be lived each and
every day of our lives.
And the buffet that our heavenly father places before us is bountiful day
in and day out. He doesn’t care what we wear, how we look, how much money
we have, or what we have “accomplished” in the eyes of the world. He isn’t
impressed with how many places we have traveled, all that our children
have accomplished, or how big our house is…He just loves completely.
the next time you are walking through your house, or the house of a friend
or loved one and you see a cheesy cruise ship picture, listen to Gods
words ring true in your heart. It’s not what is on the outside that
matters_ it is what lives within your heart. And know that He doesn’t need
impressing. He simply loves each and every one of us.
get the camera out, and take some goofy snap shots, live a little, replace
the facade with real life! I promise you, it is much more fulfilling and
“And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you
© Copyright 2009 by Leah
Lanier. All rights reserved.
THE PARABLE OF THE BROKEN PLATE
| By Leah Lanier
Dedicated to all who
have been broken at some point in their lives...
You know who you are!
One day, as I was shopping
in a quaint little town, I discovered a precious antique shop. I was sure
that I would find a priceless treasure as I entered the store. I began to
roam around, looking for the one item I would take back to remember this
wonderful outing. I looked and looked. I saw many things; some things
unique, some things (of course as we all know) just junk...I do love good
junk though. I wandered to the back of the store, and there on a bottom
shelf sat a beautiful china plate. Beautiful pink and yellow roses adorned
the little plate. It sat all alone. I asked the shop owner if there were
any others, to make a set. No, she replied, it is one of a kind - hand
painted. I picked it up, and looked. I thought it was probably painted by
someone's great grandmother. So, for a mere few dollars, I bought my
beautiful, priceless treasure. Well, it was priceless as far as I was
When I arrived home, I
looked intently for a special place to put my treasure. I wanted to be
able to see it on a daily basis. Even pick it up and look at it. I was too
afraid to use it, but oh it brought a smile to my face. I displayed it
ever so gently on a shelf that I passed by everyday. Day in, day out, my
treasure was with me. Days turned into weeks, weeks into months, and
months into years. My treasure was still with me. Then it happened. Much
to my dismay, during the hustle and bustle of a normal day, the shelf got
knocked and my one-of-a-kind treasure came tumbling down into a million
tiny pieces. I fell to the floor, and tears began to pour down my cheeks.
I sat, simply staring in disbelief. I looked at the shelf, trying to
understand why my plate had fallen, what had happened. I thought it was in
the safest place in my home. I thought it was secure. Years and years have
gone by, and nothing had ever happened to it. Why now? Why today? Why am I
sitting here looking at all of these tiny pieces that will never be put
I stood to my feet and
slowly got a Ziploc to put the pieces in. I wasn't sure why. I mean
really, how in the world could I ever glue it back together again? I knew
that would be impossible. But at the same time, I also knew that I didn't
want to part with what once was, a precious little treasure to me. So bit
by bit, piece by piece, my beautiful antique hand painted plate was placed
in a Ziploc. I put it in a drawer in the kitchen, and left it there. The
space where it sat on the shelf was empty. Every time I walked by, I
looked and knew it wouldn't be sitting there. But still, I looked. And
when I looked at the emptiness, in my mind's eye I saw the pieces sitting
in a Ziploc in a drawer, destroyed by simple every day life.
One day, many months later
as I was spring cleaning, I came across the Ziploc. I pulled it out and
contemplated throwing it out. Something stopped me. I took the Ziploc to a
room we like to call the craft room and sat down on a stool. I took the
pieces out and spread them all over the counter, just staring. I rummaged
through some drawers and found a simple little cardboard box and went back
to my stool. Hmmm... I have never done this, I thought to myself. I got
the glue out, and started gluing the pieces one by one onto the box. An
hour went by so quickly, and before I knew it, my box was complete!!
I stood up and looked at
it, half not knowing what it would actually be, and then it hit me. I had
created another treasure from something that could have been trash. Even
more than that... I had created a brand new treasure, out of an old
treasure that had been destroyed. And this new treasure even had new
purpose, and new function. Not like the old one. And yet I could still
see, within my new treasure box, the pieces of the old treasure... the
parts that brought me joy. Had I not listened with my heart, and created
this new treasure, the old would have never served its purpose, even in
I share this for many
reasons...One of the most important ones being the broken pieces of our
lives. Sometimes, we have great tragedies that happen to us. We have the
sense that nothing will ever be the same again. We have been broken in
some way or another. The part of us that used to be whole now lies in tiny
little pieces, just as my little plate did. The part of us that once was a
beautiful, whole treasure, and served to remind us of something incredible
and meaningful, now lies broken. It is a reminder of failure or loss and
it is forever before us to see, on a daily basis.
treasure that broke into a million little pieces in my life was my
marriage. I sat on the floor of my little house, crying, looking at the
pieces, and knew it could never be put together again. I could have
stopped there. I could have held onto the pieces - I could have placed
them in a Ziploc, deep in the deepest part of my heart, hidden away, never
to look at them again. But I didn't. I finally decided to take them out,
to give them to the Master Artist, the one person who could make something
beautiful and new from the broken pieces of my life.
I gave God every piece of
disappointment, sadness, despair, heartache, and hopelessness from my
broken marriage. This was not a one time event. I had to, and still have
to, give this brokenness to God. But it was at that moment that I decided
to trust God with the pieces. And as I did, I thought about my plate. Was
I going to have reminders of my broken marriage constantly before me? I
mean, a broken plate turned into a treasure box is one thing, but what of
a broken marriage. God whispered softly into my heart... "I know what I
am doing, trust me". So, I did.
Here are the reminders of
my broken marriage....When I look into my daughter's eyes. The daughter I
wouldn't have, had it not been for that marriage. When I hear my
daughter's laugh, when I wipe away her tears, when she says she loves me,
and hugs me with all her might. When I listen to a friend who has been
through what I have been through, and say without a doubt that I
understand. When I can sit down at my computer to write such things as
this tiny parable...And when I sit down at the piano, and begin to write a
worship song about God's unchanging love for me. These are my reminders.
This is the new creation that God has made, out of the broken pieces of my
marriage. This is the new treasure box...that holds many wonderful things
that God has allowed me to see and learn and share.
So if you are wondering
whether or not you will be whole again, don't wonder such things. Look at
your life as a new creation, and God has taken all of those pieces you
thought were pointless and useless and created a priceless, unique,
one-of-a-kind treasure...And that treasure is you.
And my life is living proof. I am amazed even more at the broken
pieces that God continues to put together, and the masterpieces that have
come from them. His promises are always true…
MUSIC COMPANION FOR "THE
PARABLE OF THE BROKEN PLATE"
Listen to MY GOD IS CHANGELESS | Words & Music by Leah Lanier
From the CD
MORE THAN LIFE
Artist, Leah Lanier
© Copyright 2009 by Leah
Lanier. All rights reserved.
TIME WELL SPENT |
By Leah Lanier
I always begin writing,
with a certain compelling in my spirit, not really knowing exactly what I
am going to say. I just simply know that I am supposed to sit down and
I just got off the phone
with my mother...Another one of our long, midnight conversations, which I
have come to treasure in my life. We talk about everything from politics,
to her sweet granddaughter, Anna, to the Lord, the call of God on our
lives, what I made for dinner, how annoyed I got during the day, you name
it, we talk about it. How blessed I am to have my mom as my best friend.
Tonight we talked about time. How much we have, what to do with it, and
how valuable it is. So...I wanted to sit down to write about
Is our time actually our
time? Or is it God's time? In all reality, I believe that He wants our
time to be His time, in every way. He is like that, our Lord. He loves to
be included in every aspect of our lives. It's called fellowship. It's
called feasting together, dwelling together, you know...being kindred
spirits together. But what mom and I talked about was how God was speaking
to us about investing the time we have here on this earth. Investing it
the way He wants us to, in order to fulfill the call that He has placed on
our lives. The call to share His grace and His love through song, through
worship, through writing new songs of praise to Him, etc... So how do we
invest our time? How do we know when the investing we are doing is the
right kind of investing? How do we know we are on His timetable and not
We rise in the morning to
greet the day, and we go about our routines. All the while looking at the
clock to see what time it is, and what we will do next. We never stop to
think about the fact that we will never get that particular hour, minute
or second back that just went by. I am a homeschool mommy and I love every
second of it. I find myself taking pictures continuously of Anna doing her
work, in her jammies, with kitty cats surrounding her (Yes, we are a laid
back sort of homeschool family). Anyway, my point in taking the picture is
to capture that moment in time. So that I can look at it, go back to that
precious moment when she wrote her scripture in her penmanship book, and
talked about how much she loves school at home with her cats. So yes, our
time is very valuable in our personal lives. We have past memories, and we
have present joys, and we have future hopes and dreams - Past, present,
and future. All measured by this one little word -
something that should be valued, and not wasted. It is something that you
can't get back once it is gone. It is a gift given to us by our Heavenly
Father. In Ecclesiastes 3:1 it says "To everything there is a season, a
time for every purpose under Heaven." When I read this verse, the part
that truly stands out in my spirit is the part that says, a time for every
purpose. There is a particular time to do all that God has called us to do
while we are here in this world. So, how do we know when that perfect time
is and how do we know what to do with that time? Such a simple question,
and we complicate it so much!! But there are some simple answers...we have
to calm our emotions most of the time, and just look at what the Word
My father is known for his
wonderful acronyms. I believe I just may attempt one on the word Time. So
here we go...let's see what the Spirit speaks to us.
with every second, of every minute, of every hour, of every day, of every
year, of your life. Proverbs 3:5-6 "Trust in the Lord with all of your
heart, lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge
Him and He shall direct your paths". In order to start on the path, of
finding that time for every purpose under Heaven, you have to trust Him.
To trust means to rely on, to be in one's care, to expect, to believe. So
this means that with all of your heart, meaning all of your dreams, even
your fears and worries, the good and the bad, you rely on God. You give
yourself to His care, and then you expect and believe that He will direct
the paths of your life.
When we begin to trust God
with all of our heart, things begin to happen in our lives. A lot of
"times", we wonder..."Is that me just thinking that? Or is it God?" We
worry that we will take a direction that isn't His path and we question
ourselves...so the next step to spending our time wisely for the Kingdom
is really pretty simple!!! Read on...
Inquire means to ask about or investigate. Ask God...Seek
Him and investigate the scriptures for the direction you are looking for
in your life. God will show you how to spend your time wisely. God will be
faithful to answer you.
1 Samuel 23:1-5
Then they told David, saying, "Look, the Philistines are
fighting against Keilah, and they are robbing the threshing floors."
Therefore David INQUIRED of the
Lord, saying," Shall I go and attack these Philistines?" And the Lord said
to David, "Go and attack the Philistines, and save Keilah." But David's
men said to him, "Look, we are afraid here in Judah. How much more then if
we go to Keilah against the armies of the Philistines?" Then David
INQUIRED of the Lord once again. And
the Lord answered him and said, "Arise, go down to Keilah. For I will
deliver the Philistine's into your hand." And David and his men went to
Keilah and fought with the Philistine's, struck them with a mighty blow,
and took away their livestock. So David saved the inhabitants of Keilah.
This would have never
happened, had he not inquired of God what to do. I mean, here David was,
in quite a situation. He had people all around him trying to tell him what
to do with his time and his life. But David knew that God had the answer
for him. When it comes down to it, you have to inquire of God for your
life. No one can do it for you. This is how that trust and love
relationship is built between you and your Father.
The passage goes on
through verse 13, and David again asks the Lord for wisdom and what to do.
God answers him again, and David's life is saved from the hand of Saul.
But what was it that David did, when he needed to know what direction to
take in his life, and how to use the time God had given him? He asked God
and God was faithful to answer. Notice that it was not a popular answer
either. The majority definitely didn't want to go God's path! So don't be
surprised when it is a path that seems scary or difficult. There is still
a time for every season, and there will always be purpose in this time
that you spend, because your time will become God's time! Read on...
When God speaks to you about what you are to do with the time in your
life, meditate on His
answer. Meditate means to spend time considering, to spend time in quiet
contemplation. Get rid of some of the noise in your life, and think about
God's answer, and how He is directing you. Our minds are on so many things
as we hurry through life. Our children, our jobs and finances, our
spouses, ministry/calling, and don't get me wrong, these are all important
aspects of life. The word busy comes to mind. If you notice, we are even
paying to have quiet time. We pay for quiet days at the spa, we pay for
yoga classes, and on and on. I encourage you to find your quiet spot, a
place that you can meditate on God's answer for your life, and the time
you have. During this time of meditation, the life changing power of God
will penetrate your heart and your spirit, and your faith in who He is
will be built up- Built up so that you can begin to wisely spend your time
for Him and for His Name's sake. Your faith muscles will be built up in
Him, and you will be ready to move on to the next and final step! Read
E - Execute
He has spoken to you. When you ask God, "How do you want me to spend my
Time for you?" He will answer. Then meditating on His answer will
penetrate your spirit, and then comes the action! Step out, execute the
answer! Execute means to perform, to put into effect! Is there a better
way to spend your time than executing the plan of God for your life? And
expect results. When David didn't know what to do about the Philistines,
He asked God. God answered him. David then executed the plan that God had
for him and his men. David had to meditate in his heart about what God
spoke to him. I am sure David's emotions were heavy, and shaky. But he
knew the God he served...And after David executed God's plan, everyone
So, if you want to know
how to spend your time wisely for Christ, I challenge you to try this
little acronym. Expect to see results, because God's Word never comes back
void. Trust God,
Inquire of God,
Meditate on the word He speaks
into your heart, and Execute
what He has revealed to you....I promise, it will be
© Copyright 2009 by Leah
Lanier. All rights reserved.
STAY OUT OF WAL-MART | By
Okay, while most of the
tings that I write are pretty deep, I have been pricked in the heart by
the Spirit to write, what I would call, something a bit more practical for
Being a wife, homemaker,
mom/home school mom…well, need I say more? My heart goes out to every
woman that has experienced, in some shape or form, the previous mentioned!
Ever experience overload? And no, I don’t mean overloading the washing
machine, which I do constantly! I am talking about emotional overload. I had an
overload just this evening.
You know, you
have just finished cleaning up the kitchen after everyone has been served,
you are unloading the dishwasher, so you can just turn around and fill it
up again, you have made coffee so that it will come on the next morning,
you have checked your child’s humidifier to get it ready for the night,
you have just run their bath and gathered more dirty clothes, you have
unloaded and folded clothes for the millionth time in one day, so you can
empty the washer to prepare for the next morning, and let’s see, you have
fed all the cats, cleaned out litter boxes, fed the hamster, fed the fish,
and now, after you have combed and blow dried your child’s hair after
their bath, you are ready to sit down for a peaceful, much needed family
devotional time! Oh, wait a minute…was I talking about your evening?
Oops…that is amazing, I thought that sounded just like mine! I won’t even
begin to go over the previous two-thirds of the day! You would click onto
another website, because of sheer exhaustion!
But seriously, God has
called me to be a homemaker and home school mom, and
round the clock, 24 hours a day, support for my family. I am here to
encourage you, because I believe that God does give us all we need to
accomplish what He has called us to. Philippians 4:13, I can do all
things through Him who strengthens me, still rings true today as it
did for Paul when he sat in prison. Where I am right now, is by no means a
prison, but it does feel as though the walls can close in around me. It
does feel, at times, that I am alone. But I am not…My comforter and
friend, the Spirit of God, is with me.
God has been teaching me,
for the past few years, about being wise with all He has given me. And of
course, we all know that when God begins to teach us something it is going
to take change and discipline on our part to put what He is teaching us
into action. I am here to encourage every mom, and dad for that matter, to
strive to make your home (through His power) all God intends it to be. If
you are struggling financially, there are some practical things you can do
to help your family. If you are struggling in your relationships, God will
bless even the smallest effort on your part, and He will begin to heal
your family. If you are simply trying to find your spot, tell God the
desires of your heart, and listen. In some very practical ways, He will
Okay, I know, I said that
this wasn’t going to be “deep”, and it’s not…That part is over! Here are
some of the things God is using in my life, and I have seen some great
results. The key to walking in all that God has for you is very simple.
Focus your heart on Him, love Him above all in this life, and you will
begin to see the hand of God moving in the life of your family.
Some Practical Tips From
My Heart To Yours
When working diligently to
run a household, and trying to stretch every dollar, here are some things
that have really worked for me…And, might I add, the reason to stretch the
dollar? To build the Kingdom of God by being wise with all that He has
entrusted to you.
This first one is a doozy!
The Spirit pricked my heart about this just recently, and it’s not the
first time He has done this in my life. So, here goes. Are you ready?
Brace yourself! Number ONE...
1) STAY OUT OF WAL-MART!
Okay, are you still there?
I pray you don’t click to another website!
I know for some of you,
this will be like stopping some kind of major addiction. It was, and still
is, for me. I have just found that when I go into Wal-Mart, or stores like
Wal-Mart, I spend way too much money. I have committed to go only to my
local discount store. I will repeat…Discount grocery store, as much as
possible for all of my needs. When I go to Wal-Mart, I am tempted, and my
money flies right out of my billfold. It is amazing what you can find at a
discount grocery store, that is in Wal-Mart as well, but the other
temptations are gone. So, I challenge you, stay out. If you can’t, and
have to cross the Wal-Mart line, make a list and buy only what is on your
2) DON’T BUY WHAT YOU
Okay, really, all of these
are super hard for me. Most of the time, my purchases have been just as
much a want, as a need. That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t have little
rewards here and there, but we have to discipline that flesh. Take
inventory, look in your medicine cabinets, your makeup bag, your pantry,
and make a list of only what you need!
3) COOK, COOK, COOK!
I know, I know,
exhaustion, exhaustion, exhaustion! But, a reward will come for the price
that is paid. I have found that when I slack off of my cooking my family
suffers, not only in health, but in pocket book. Find some things that are
quick for those really difficult days, but do your best to stay home and
avoid fast food. You will feel better about your dollar that was NOT
spent, and you will also feel and be healthier.
4) FAMILY DEVOTIONS!
When life gets hectic, it
is very easy to just say goodnight and skip the devotions. If nighttime
doesn’t work for your bunch, try to find just 10 minutes during the day
that works. God will bless your unity in heart. This is where God is able
to strengthen relationships, and your foundation will be stronger, even
when you don’t realize it. I have seen it in my own family. In the
beginning of establishing something new it takes work, and again,
discipline. But then it will become part of a lifestyle and a comfort. We
look forward to our family devotion time every night. Even though I am
half dead, and look like an overworked woman when I sit down for them!
They are very refreshing.
5) FIND YOUR PEACE!
Okay, I know that the
peace of God is living within us at all times…but find that place in your
home where you can experience it! For me, since I am here all the time,
and since I am virtually never alone, I have to set aside some time every night for myself. If I
don’t I will flip! Hey, I am only human! Find your spot. This isn’t just for women…Men, find your spot!
Everyone needs their quiet time with God.
have so much more to share, but I will save it. I think I have probably
overloaded everyone, as I do my washing machine daily. I pray what I have
shared will be an encouragement to you. I believe that’s why we go through
some of the things we go through in life…So we can learn, share, and
encourage one another. Encouragement is so important. But, it is also
important to share encouragement. So may He bless you in all that you
do…And remember, you can do all things through Him who gives you
strength…Even stay out of Wal-Mart!
2008 by Leah Lanier. All rights reserved.
MY BEAUTIFUL MOM | By Leah
I am 35 years old as I
write this. As I was framing some recent pictures, I realized something
I framed a picture of my
mother and my daughter - Mom, age 63 and Anna, age 13 - And my mom
still looks as if she
could be Anna's mom. Beautiful...My mother is the most beautiful woman I
know. I believe God knew exactly what He was doing when He created my mom.
Well, of course He did, He is God!
The outside of my mother is
absolutely gorgeous - Tall, slender, beautiful thick black hair, dark
eyes, perfect movie star mouth, oval face, high cheek bones - you name it,
mom has it! But what makes her even more beautiful, is that her outside,
as unbelievable as it is, pales in comparison to the beauty that radiates
from within. You know in Proverbs 31 where it talks about the virtuous
woman? That is my mother.
When I was a little girl, I
grew up as a princess. My mom made everything around me beautiful, my
room, every little nook, in every little corner. It was like living in a
decor' magazine like Traditional Home or Southern Living! As I got older,
we changed up my room, as my interests and tastes changed, from Winnie The
Pooh, to rainbows, to rich Victorian with lots of greens and burgundy's.
She could take an inexpensive little trinket and turn it into a queen's
royal jewelry. I was always the best dressed kid with the best hair (and
yes, mom did my hair as well, at home!!!) I wore the latest trends. All of
my friends wanted to hang out at my house. They called my mom, their mom!
Why? Because she made life beautiful, and still does, to this very day.
As I got older, I saw even
more how incredible of a feat this was...We were in full time ministry
most of my growing up years and we didn't have much. I never even knew it.
I never felt as though I wore second hand clothes, and still to this day,
some of my favorite clothes are some that mom bought me at the local
I think the greatest thing
that my mom could have ever done for me, is to just be the example of true
beauty, the beauty that is simply her. She always made any circumstance or
situation we were in okay, because she could always find the purpose and
beauty in it, no matter how difficult it was. This is what she has given
me, and now she is giving
same to my daughter, Anna. She has taught me to embrace the beauty that
God has given us, no matter how small it may be. To treasure each second
we have here on Earth. And when it isn't easy to see or find the beauty
around me, to look through the eyes of God, and learn how to create beauty
all around me.
I am so blessed to have the
most beautiful mom and friend anyone could ever have. May we all learn
that beauty is everywhere around us. May we learn that God has also given
all we need, as His children, to walk in beauty, to create beauty, and to
see beauty, no matter where our lives are. If simply by walking outside
and listening to the song of a tiny sparrow, there is beauty.
you mom, I love you.
2008 by Leah Lanier. All rights reserved.
THE PUFFY TAIL DAY | By Leah
Well, I am writing this, of
course, from a home-school mom perspective! So, those of you who aren't
home-school parents, just bear with me, I pray you will get something out
of this. Little thoughts go on all the time in my, let's say unusual
My precious daughter,
Anna, has a kitten named Emily Marie - actually, her full name is "Emily
Marie Cocoa Macaroon". On this particular "normal" home-school day, (which
is by no means normal, in any sense of the word, and I wouldn't have it
any other way) Anna came running from one end of the house, and Emily from
the other end. Of course, the two most ungraceful ones in our household,
met in the middle, neither one expecting it. Emily's tail puffed up at
least 5 times her normal size, quite bothered by the unexpected event. Now
we have a phrase around our home...If we are having a day that is not
going quite as we expected, or “stuff” has taken the place of peace, we
call it a "Puffy Tail Day."
Let me guess, you have
never had one of those! Well, I have them all the time. Just the other
night, I lay awake with about 10 school workbooks in my bed, my Charlotte
Mason book, my book on child training, my Bible, and several other "Help
The Home School Mom" books! What was I so puffy about? Teaching the deeper
concepts of Fractions and the Decimal System. I thought, "Oh my word, I
have to teach this, and I have to teach it now!" My tail was getting
puffier and puffier by the second! I, of course, called and
whined to my mom about it...explaining that I had to teach this tomorrow, or everything
was going to just be a mess! She was very consoling, praying for me with unbelievable calm. I was amazed...”Why
wasn't her tail puffy like mine? Didn't she understand that my
daughter’s entire educated life depended on me?”
I began to pray, and to
think about the creative way I was going to teach my huge lesson, and God
said, "Leah, go to sleep!" So, I got up the next morning, took a
deep breath and asked God to help me impart what I needed, to teach my
Anna that day. And no, I didn't have this big lesson plan figured out, nor
did I have a clue how I was going to start! Over breakfast we explored the
world of Fractions deeper, and all was well and life went on. The concept
was grasped, it wasn't that big of a deal, and tails were smooth again. I
know, sounds simple - that's because it was, and it is.
The Word of God says to
trust Him with all of our hearts, and not to lean on our own
understanding, and in all our ways to acknowledge Him and He will be
faithful to direct our paths. (Proverbs 3:5-6) Yes, that means every path
of every Mathematical equation that I am to teach my child. That means the
paths of our work, our homes, and our relationships.
The key is to stop looking
with our own wisdom, and look with His. His ways are not like ours...His
are so much better. Trust me, this will avoid many of those Puffy Tail
Days! God is the only one who can truly smooth the puffy tail. It
doesn't mean we won't have moments of puff here and there, but we know who
to run to for the calm and the peace.
So in your life, may God
bless and touch you in such a way that you feel His peace that passes your
own human understanding, and when He does, look for ways to pass it on to
others. There are so many Puffy Tails that need His peace, His love and
His grace. And if you are a home-school mom, try to calm down a little. We
will be fine, because it isn't our responsibility to teach all...it is
God's. We are simply His vehicle. If we will only listen and obey, He will
be faithful to all He has promised for us and our children!
2008 by Leah Lanier. All rights reserved.
BEING LITTLE | By Leah Lanier
When will she stop being little?
I look at her hands and still see the baby in her.
I couldn't sleep last night, so fate took me to my daughter's room.
I crawled in bed beside her and she intertwined her legs in mine,
something she has always done, from the time she was an infant. It’s like
she is trying to get as close to me as possible. When she was just months
old, I remember thinking to myself... "How
precious, she is trying to get back to where she came from, my womb, the
place where she felt the safest."
Well, there I lay, beside my
baby who is now 10 years old. And I began to cry. She didn't know it, but
I lay there, with bittersweet tears of a mommy. Bitter tears, because I
knew that the years of being little were slowly fading, right before my
I asked myself, deep within my heart, “When will she stop being
little?”. When will the “baby” leave her hands? I rubbed her back and
felt the skin, still of a baby. I rubbed my arm, and wondered when my baby
skin left? Did my mom know the exact day when the baby turned into a
little girl, and the little girl turned into a young lady, and the young
lady turned into a woman?
I thought about the events of the day...The watercolor painted by my Anna,
how proud she and I both were of it, and how excited we were to display it
on the wall... How she came running into the house, after riding the four
wheeler through mud puddles... How she left treats for the wolf only she
has seen in our woods... Her precious heart, and voice, that always tells
me that I am not only the best mommy, but the prettiest, and the best
singer of anyone she knows.
Lord, I pray that I will treasure the fact that she can't reach
everything, and that she can't wash clothes yet, and that there is always
toothpaste in the sink. Help me to treasure the fact that she doesn't want
to brush her hair right now, and that she doesn't match all of the time!
That she runs into things, and that things spill almost on a daily
Because all of these little things, no matter how frustrating they may be
it means one and only one thing... That my Anna is still little,
and for now, I don't have to answer,
“When will she stop being little?”.
As far as I am concerned, there will always be a place for my Anna to
Do you know how I know such things?
Because I am my mother and father's daughter, and I am still little!
2008 by Leah Lanier. All rights reserved.
| By Leah Lanier
To trust means to give of
yourself; when you feel as though you will fall off of a very tall cliff.
To trust means to do
something that doesn't seem natural; when you are afraid of the hurt.
To trust means to live
life to the fullest; without the thought of an end in sight.
To trust means to love
unconditionally; with no strings attached, no hidden motives, no thought
To trust means to believe
in the unseen; and to live as though you could reach out and touch it.
To trust means to hold out
your hand to help, to hold out your hand to hold, to hold out your hand to
circumstance may be.
To trust means to see
yourself for who you are, nothing more, and nothing less, and to be
accepting just the same.
To trust means to
continually reach for your dream; when human doubt creeps in
To trust means to be
courageous; no, I didn't say without fear, I said courageous - which is
trust in spite of fear.
To trust means to embrace
the new; even when it feels completely foreign.
To trust means to step out
and do that thing which drives you; no matter if it is understood.
To trust means to place
your hands in the life of someone else.
To trust means to love.
To trust means to have
To trust means to have
To trust means to live
There is no way to
completely trust in this life apart from the one true,
lover of all mankind.
In Him we have life; and
death is abolished.
In Him we have hope; and
lies are demolished.
In Him we have acceptance;
and rejection is cancelled out.
In Him we have faith; and
doubt is destroyed.
In Him we have courage;
and fear is abolished.
In Him we have sight; and
the unseen is seen.
In Him we are whole; and
the pieces are mended.
In Him we have life; and
forever will be.
There is no other way to
learn to trust, until we learn to trust in Jesus,
as our own personal
Savior, our Friend, our Redeemer.
It is then, and only then,
that we will be able to freely experience the joys of trusting.
2008 by Leah Lanier. All rights reserved.
BROKEN CRAYONS | By Leah Lanier
Just like broken
crayons, so are our lives sometimes. We start out fresh, new and
beautiful...flawless, so we think. Then, the years of our lives, bring
about situations and circumstances that break us, and sometimes make us
feel as though we can no longer bring forth beautiful color. Just like the
broken crayons, the ones that have been used day after day, and have been
broken time after time, they still produce beautiful, vibrant color!!!
Have you ever
experienced getting a new box of crayons? My daughter Anna loves nothing
more than to have a new box of crayons. You open the box, and there they
sit....beautiful, flawless, all lined up in all their glory. As you begin
to use them, the tip gets dull...you tear the paper back, so you can
continue with your creativity...then because of pressure, and hours of
work with them, it happens, broken!!! You look at your crayon, a bit sad
in your heart, because it doesn't look like it used to. You aren't even
sure if you want to use it. Will it even color the same? You doubt it.
Then you remember, that there is a way. There is a sharpener on the back
of the box. You eagerly turn the box over, and begin to restore the
crayon, to be used again. You use it over and over, until it is so small,
you are fearful that it's days are over.
wait, there is another way...A crayon maker. You take all of the little
bitty pieces laying around you, gather them in your hands, and you begin
to join them together and put them in this wonderful new gadget!!! It
heats and melts them into beautiful new molds...Some are tigers, some are
cars, some are alligators, but all are incredible. You create new vibrant
colors out of the broken pieces, and a life of creativity and art begins
in a way you never had imagined before. Never in a million years could you
have dreamed of these possibilities when you sat just moments ago, looking
at the broken pieces.
This is exactly how
our lives are. We start out new, fresh, vibrant. And during this thing
called life, we experience ups and downs...Victories and disappointments.
Sometimes the downs seem to outweigh the ups, and we feel broken, and even
may appear to be broken. But God takes these broken pieces and creates a
new beautiful piece. A life full of wisdom, and compassion and love to
share with others, because we understand what it means to be broken. He
melts us and molds us into beautiful, vibrant color, to give to the world
If you have ever been
broken, or are broken now, know that the God of creation can put you back
together, and make a masterpiece from the pieces of your heart. Know that
He loves you unconditionally, and has created you to be full of color,
full of life, and joy in this world. So the next time you see a broken
crayon, smile and know that it is a miracle in waiting...in disguise. May
you be blessed in all that you do.
2007 by Leah Lanier. All rights reserved.
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