Oaks Of Splendor

Sharing My Life's Story And Things That Inspire Me

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Transformed by the Potter’s Hand #Poetry


Glory will be exalted as the transformation takes shape, 

Preparing for who I have made you to be. 

I mold you on the potter’s wheel,

as it turns the cold subtle clay from soft to strong. 

It becomes something unrecognizable,

Transformed in a kiln of fire burning- 

as bright as the hottest star in the universe. 

I wait for the moments when you come to me,

Loving me as I have first Loved you.

You are my greatest creation.

That is why I made you in my image. 

To know more completely. 

You are my bride who says “I do”

Take up my cross and follow me,

For I am beyond what your mind can comprehend.

I have more wonder-

than the air you breath. 

Come let me Transform you. 




Jeremiah 18:6   He said, “Can I not do with you, Israel, as this potter does?” declares the Lord. “Like clay in the hand of the potter, so are you in my hand, Israel.

1 Peter 5:6- 7   Humble yourselves, therefore, under Godʼs mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.



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How Deserving Are You?

Over the years I have enjoyed reading. During my early twenties I started reading a lot of different types of non-fiction. I have always loved a good story, but as I was becoming an adult true life stories to over my fascination. I was in a time of my life when I was trying to discover the definition of self. I remember one particular book asked the question if you rated your life from one to a hundred ‘How deserving are you?’. What shocked me was my honest answer was not one hundred percent, no I would have loved to say in all certainty that I believed in myself. Instead I started with an answer of 85%, but then a small voice filled my head and said ‘no its lower’. Was it 75%? The voice didn’t agree, instead I believed that I was only 65% deserving of my life. At first I didn’t understand how I could believe such a thing about myself. I knew that self-confidence was important. It wasn’t like I completely hated myself. Although I don’t think a percent who doubts their own worth has true love for themselves. Instead I questioned my worth not because I didn’t have people who loved me and supported me. I like so many people often do, I could not trust that this frail small person traveling along her way could ever find favor in life. I lived in a word where no matter what I did, I would never be good enough.

I had grown up in the church. I was a christian from the young age of five, which is the first time I asked Jesus to come into my heart. I knew even then that no matter where I went in life I would always have him by my side if I only asked. I did not really understand this fully, but I felt like it was something I must do. Not because it was expected, but because it was what I needed. I took many turns in my life. I went out into the world, and even though my faith never fully left me. After all once you ask Christ in, his promise is to stay with you. I did however stop going to church, stopped reading the bible, stopped praying unless I really needed something. I am sure a lot of people pray like that. The pray only comes when something tragic happens and you have nothing left to do but pray. Or maybe you only pray to ask for things like a good job, or new car. Well, that’s what I did for a while. I became wrapped up in my own struggles and world.

Today I was reading Luke 15, the parable of the lost son. To paraphrase the story the son takes his inheritance and goes out into the world and basically blows all of his money. Then he has nothing. For a while he is too afraid to return home, but eventually he does. He thought surely his father would at least give him a job among the servants. To the son’s surprise the father rejoices in his return.

Luke 15:21-24

21 “The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’
22 “But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. 23 Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Letʼs have a feast and celebrate. 24 For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate.

In many ways I can relate to how he must have felt. The son still loved his father as he went into the world. He just wanted to make his own way, have a bit of fun. He did things the father would not approve of. It wasn’t until after graduating undergraduate school that I walked away. As I look back at taking my inheritance, it became about trying to decide what I believed. I was no longer certain that I believed in Jesus because it was something I wanted or something my family and friends wanted. It was a time when I had to discover the truth for myself. I was not a bad person even though I was questioning my faith. I look at this time in my life as great growth. I spent all my inheritance in the world and had ups and downs.

Then as I looked around and had nothing left. Like the prodigal son, I turned to my father. I walked into a church that changed my life. The very first sunday God sent me a messenger, to remind me how much he loved me. At the end of the service as we sang one last song, a stranger came up to me and asked to pray for me. As she started praying, the words she spoke poured into my brokenness with love. She shared an image of a little girl wrapped in her father’s arms. She spoke truth about how Jesus had never left me. I was the prodigal daughter who had come back to my father’s house and he was sending his servant to bring me a robe of love. Over the last two years he has been there every step, as I healed, as I became whole, and as I said yes. I discovered my worth. I can now answer the question ‘How deserving are you?’ and answer 100%. My heart is full with his love. I am sure that there will be times I stubble like a small child he will always be there to scoop me up. To wrap his arms around me, and sing a song of celebration. I know it is because of him. I know with every breath I posses, that I am worthy of his love. Not because I am perfect , but because I am his child. Just as you are his child, have faith that you are 100% deserving. Run to the father’s arms knowing he too will scoop you up and carry you through.

Romans 8:14 For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God.

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The Root of Understanding

Like there is a river that runs into the sea, or the flower that blooms on the tree later to transform into a leaf, as the one leaf becomes many. There is you and there is me sharing this blog. I ask who are you the reader? I can not know you directly unless you introduce yourself in a message or email. But even in that do I ‘know’ you? So instead, you are who I imagine you to be, the person I imagine that I am writing to. You are tall and have blue eyes, or you are short with brown eyes. Both descriptions could describe the person on the other side of the screen that is right now reading what I have written. Maybe you are not these physical descriptions at the same time but in equal parts of my imagination you are all descriptive adjectives.

You are ‘every man’. Not to say you have to be a man, I myself am a woman. However, I too am ‘every man’. I like you have fears, even if those fears seem to be different. That which we identify as fear is still fear whether it is of a spider or rejection. I like you have hopes, hope that traces through the very center of who I define myself to be.

Some time ago I was sitting in my room alone, much like I am now. I was writing in a journal while listening to music. I find that my greatest moments of inspiration come from music and the lyrics artist write. I find inspiration from others, but also from God. I have been trying to hear God more clearly in the past years of my journey. I feel like I have gotten better at this, not perfect though. During the night mentioned before, I was also reading scripture trying to understand the direction that God wanted me to take. I have more clarity now but still I find that the answer is not as clear as I would want. Or maybe I am just not receiving it as clearly. I don’t know, but I am ok with the unknown.

I use to have so many plans of my own. Plans that were mapped out to what I believed would bring me my greatest joy. Like you who are reading these words, the things I wanted and planned did not turn out as expected. Nor did they even happen. In my youth I used to believe that someday I would be a great performer on broadway, then once in college after realizing that I suffered from stage fright. I dreamt that I would be a great lighting designer on broadway. I went as far as going into one of the top-level lighting design programs in the country. I had applied twice to the same program, because they only accepted two people a year. I know that I had talent, and I still know this. I even had passion for what I dreamt of achieving. The problem came though once I had walked through the door of accomplishing my goal of getting into graduate school. Have you ever desired something some much that it ached through your bones? The day I received the acceptance letter was one of the happiest days. I literally jumped for joy. My mom heard me yelling and thought something was wrong, I couldn’t even get the words out at first because I had lost my breath. I was happy crying uncontrollably. Finally the words “I got in” sprung forth with such force that laughter replaced the tears.  The year changed me. I learned a lot about lighting design. I also learned a more important life lesson, one I never planned. Life lessons are like that though, always unplanned. I came to realize the plan I had for my life was not who I was. The direction I had been swimming towards, no longer defined who I wanted to be. Nor who I was intended to be. It was a hard lesson to realize. I kept struggling through the program, not because I lacked the talent. Maybe I lacked the experience, but that is the least of the source. I achieved a goal I had worked so hard for. However, once I stepped through the door of achievement the image I saw was not me. It was instead the imagined me I had used as the adjective to define myself. I still love the things I used to dream of, and it will always hold a place inside me. The fact remains that while I was trying to define myself as theatre lighting designer, I didn’t leave room for anything else. I am so much more than one adjective. You are so much more than blue-eyed or brown-eyed.  You and I are alike because underneath it all we have the same desires.

The nights I sit in my room alone to write I find honesty in my continued evolution. I like most have been shaped by my experiences. These experiences at the core are the same as yours. They are the roots that help us understand our lives and its purpose. The root of my life has given me an understanding that LOVE is the purpose of life.

1 Corinthians 8:3 But whoever loves God is known by God. 

1 John 4:8 Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is Love. 





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Thoughts On Negative Energy

The heart is the center of the wellspring of both physical and spiritual life. God needs and wants to be the center of our hearts.

Psalm 51: 10 Create in me a pure heart,O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. 

Proverbs 4:23 Above all else, guard your heart for everything you do flows from it. 

As I read these scriptures, I think about an article I read the other day about taking on another person’s negative energy. This is something I have struggled with in the past. If I am around a person or people who are sad, depressed, angry, hurt, or negative in any way; I allow their energy to drain the life out of me. I see how God is asking me to learn how to protect me heart. So, when I am faced with negativity I can be a source of his living water, instead of a river that has run dry. I believe any negative energy can be renewed by God’s love and grace, which I know flows through me. Because Christ is in me; at the center of my heart. God asks me to show those around me who he is. I feel like God is saying that when I come across people who are radiating negative energy, he can use my heart like a damn to allow his love to flow into the person who is negative. Rivers are supposed to flow in one direction, but when I am around the person or people who drains my energy, I often will find myself filling up with the very negativity that the person is radiating. It’s as if the river is flowing in reverse. If my heart is not protected, the joy of a sunny day disappears only to be filled by another who has clouds looming. Instead of allowing my heart to get drained, creating emptiness; I should protect my heart with a damn. Allowing God to use the river of love he has filled in me, to fill the empty hole the other person has inside of them that created the negativity. My hope then is that God teaches me how to better guard my heart, and build a damn…. as he continues to be the living water that dwells in the center of my heart.

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Countdown to Thanksgiving Day 4: The Unconventional Guide to Thanksgiving

We all have our traditions in our family of what we will eat on Thanksgiving Day. In most American households turkey with mashed potatoes and gravy are inevitable, same with pie and ice cream. The other variety of sides always vary from house to house but a common theme always is that of the bountiful harvest produced over the growing season.

I used be a part of a Community Shared Agriculture(CSA) in Boston. I would love going every week to pick up my fresh produce grown by a local farmer. In June the strawberries were so sweet they melted into your mouth with an explosion of flavor. The month of August always showed the most in our weekly share, my favorite were the heirloom tomatoes in the many vibrant colors. I loved drizzling a little bit of olive oil, salt, pepper, and basil on them. My mouth salivates just thinking about it. Of course with the fall season you saw so many different varieties of squash. As the months transitioned from one to the other there was a change in what you received. Not only was is different from month to month, but also year to year. One year the farm grew so many watermelons we would receive two or three a week. This last year the area was experiencing a drought, it was so bad one week they had to postpone pick-up because there was not enough ripened fruit.

Psalm 67:6 The land yields its harvest;God, our God, blesses us.

Life too resembles the changing seasons of harvest, sometimes you have more than you could ever expect and you start giving things away. Other times there is not enough water to make the fruit grow into plenty. That is when we might be faced with the decision to slow down the harvest of what we do yield in order to make it last through the drought. During both of these seasons of change we can find thanksgiving. Something that I have learned in my journey is that in the harsh times, even when life is not bountiful, we still have enough. Countless times I have seen that every bill got paid I first questioned how this would happen that month. I can testify to believing I did not have enough money to put gas in my car only to find a twenty dollar bill in unexpected places, like the sidewalk or the pocket of my coat. The thanksgiving we live becomes an unconventional ingredient in our lives when we believe God always provides what you need. No matter what the harvest yields it is more than enough, because all things are through him.

Philippians 4  12 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength.


Countdown to Thanksgiving Day 3: Why Thanksgiving is the Secret Ingredient

Once you start shifting you attitude in a life filled with thanksgiving, you will notice things in your life start to take a new form. It becomes something  you know but don’t recognize as much. I mean to thing  you start saying is thank you for loosing your job, for not being able to get a new cell phone you thought you needed, to say thank you for the fact  a relationship you thought was going to lead to marriage is over. You even say thank you that you once threw out a rotten banana only to slip and fall. You start realizing  the days you thought to be grey and gloomy were really the moments that God was using to transform you. You over come all of that sticky life stuff only to come to where you are now, and hope this season of thanksgiving brings will help to awaken you to the glory of who you are. You are strong and beautiful, and even when your life is not like you want it to be or imagine it to be there is opportunity. You have a rainbow standing right before you to choose, and to seek what is next.

Living in thanksgiving everyday leads to more optimism, which (lets just break it down) is hope. When you are hopeful tomorrow will be filled with the endless possibilities, you can face a flat tire and say OK. It’s flat today but I know it can get fixed and tomorrow I will be driving down the road again. Life sometimes is filled with these moments. The secret  I found in my journey to my own discovery of truth, only proves thanksgiving is not just one day a year, but really 365 days a year.

My dad died when I was in college and it effected me beyond anything else had up to that point. I would say it effect me even more than my parents divorce and not seeing my father for fifteen years before we got the phone call he was dying form cancer. It was the day of thanksgiving actually. I could forever associate such a great holiday with such sadness, but I don’t. Instead I live the moment in thanksgiving. I might not have gotten the chance to say goodbye to the man who was my father if it hadn’t been for a few circumstances leading up to that moment. In September of the same year I had changed colleges. I chose to transfer back in state for many different reasons, but ultimately it was because I truly felt like it was the right choice, the choice that God wanted me to make. The thing about transferring was all of a sudden I found myself living close to my family, actually the same town as my grandparents. I went to church, lunch, and laundry every Sunday. I was also able to be with them all for Thanksgiving Day, when we got the call from my Aunt (my dad’s sister), saying that he was really sick and dying. She was the only family from his side who stayed in contact with me and my younger brother. She mentioned he had asked to see us, and wanted to know if we wanted the same. See if I hadn’t of transferred, I wouldn’t have been so close when all of this happened. I had originally been going to school six hours away, and the school had a absence policy that basically meant you couldn’t really miss any classes. I know they would not have been as understanding about missing finals for my father’s funeral. I know this because a friend my freshman year had lost her father to a heart-attack during midterms, and she basically had to drop out for the semester and return a year later. Part of that was due to the schools policy on missing classes. At my new college when I told the director of my department what was going on before I took off to fly to New Jersey  in order to see my dad before he passed away. Well, she basically said if you need anything let me know, she would inform all my professors. And don’t worry about work missed she would make sure I got it later. Also I had only taken two finals when I got the call he had passed away and since we needed to fly back for the funeral service, she basically was OK with me taking several in-completes. Then allowed me to take the finals the beginning of the next semester when I got back from break.

So, I live in thanksgiving that the choices and direction my left was heading leading up to such a tragic moment in my life, was all set into place for the best out come. Now when I think of the holiday I am not sad and mournful because it was a time when I found out my dad was sick. Instead it was a time when I was able to share forgiveness with my father. I was also able to understand how much my father did love me despite all the years of separation.

1st Timothy 4:4 For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving