observe – a poem

observe – a poem

Hello, friends!

Today I’m sharing a poem that I wrote while on the Glory Writers retreat…next Monday, keep your eyes peeled for a recap of that trip.:)

observe, My child,

the ways that I walk,

and tread these paths beside Me.

the world dances to a different tune,

so press your ear close to My song and

obey

these words that I sing to you,

lest you forget in the valley

the songs that we sang on the mountaintop,

for My words still ring true in the storm.

take My hand, little one,

for I long to be near you,

and shield you from fear

and the terror of night.

observe, My child,

the ways that I walk,

and tread these paths beside Me.

How do you keep your eyes on the ways of the Lord? What are some of your favorite Scriptures or quotes to bring to mind when you’re needing to refocus on God?

Photo by Zack Silver on Unsplash

It’s Release Day!!! Here are my thoughts.

It’s Release Day!!! Here are my thoughts.

Guys, the big day is FINALLY HERE!!!!!!!

The day I never thought I’d reach.

Aaagh, I can’t really put it all in words. I’m kind of excited. I think I might have a little celebration.

Here’s the link to purchase it on Amazon! (Or just look at it and be happy that it’s on Amazon for the world to see, like I’ve been doing. Or write a review and rate it once you read it. That would be totally awesome.)

If you have read my writing, encouraged me, given me feedback, helped me along this crazy road to publishing…thank you. Thank you for being here and letting me share my thoughts with you. I can’t tell you how happy I am to be doing this!

I wrote the following piece a few days ago…and decided to share it here.

Honest thoughts here…

As I’m writing this, it’s four days from the day my first book will be released.

My first book. In print.

It’s crazy to think about because I’ve wanted this day so badly for years. I can remember when I would scribble in the notebooks I’d stockpiled from the back-to-school sale at Shopko and dream about when the world would read my words…and as I see orders coming in across the country from people I’ve never even met, it all feels surreal.

I’m the writer I dreamed of being…

And yet I’m not.

I wanted to be a novelist. A nice solid novel was always what I envisioned when I pictured my first book. Probably historical fiction…and definitely published by the time I was eighteen. (Thank you, Jo March and Anne Shirley for warping my view of the publishing process.) Oh, and the world was going to love it. I was going to be famous.

I think that was the most important part to me. Writing so the world would remember my name.

That’s really, really sad.

Even now I keep checking myself against valuing my work in writing against how many people follow me. How many interact in the comment section or in messages. How many order my book.

How many approve of me.

But that was never the point of it, anyway.

“All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist. And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.”  – Colossians 1:17-18

That in all things Christ may have the preeminence, not me.

All things were created for Him, not me.

And the fact that He’s given me the grace and ability to pull words together and hand them to the world in a way that is relatable and healing…

That’s worth more than all of the book sales, likes, and followers in the world.

Over and over again as I keep writing and He keeps helping me forward, one thought keeps coming to my mind.

Even if only one life is touched by this book/by my writing, it’ll all be worth it.

God’s completely changed my mind about how I want to view my writing. Less than two years ago I was fighting towards the goal of becoming a full-time writer. Now I’ve realized all I want is to keep writing as a side gig…and yet I’ve never felt as much purpose in my writing as I do now.

Because it’s become a ministry for me. A way that I can reach people across the world with words and build a bridge of hope and relatability.

It’s a way that I can show people they’re not alone.

It’s a way that I can point people to God and scream out how great He is.

I love my God, and I want you to love Him, too.

❤ Laurel

Your turn to talk…and it’s a giveaway!!!

Your turn to talk…and it’s a giveaway!!!

Hey, friends!

I was thinking about today’s post and realized that I’d love two things.

1.) To hear from you!! I seem to do most of the talking here on the blog (hmm, I wonder why…), but I love good conversations in the comment section. Seriously…interacting with you all is my favorite part about sharing what I write.

2.) To give a blog friend a copy of This Will Not Last! (It releases in seven days, guys!!!)

So we’re going to combine those two things today.:)

If you’d love to have your very own signed copy of This Will Not Last sent to your door, hop into the comment section and share your answer to one (or some or all!) of the following questions. Each answered question is an entry!

  • What is one of the best things that ever happened to you?
  • When you were a child, what was your dream job?
  • What advice would you give to your fifteen-year-old self?
  • What is one thing on your bucket list?
  • What is your favorite part about this blog?

I’ll randomly select a winner on Friday, April 1st and announce the winner then.

I can’t wait to hear your answers…and send one of you a copy of This Will Not Last!

❤ Laurel

Preorder a signed copy of This Will Not Last!!!

Preorder a signed copy of This Will Not Last!!!

It’s true…we’re two weeks away from release day and you can now place your preorder for a signed copy of This Will Not Last!

Click here to preorder.:)

What the preorder special includes:

  • a signed copy of This Will Not Last
  • a poem from the collection hand-lettered on a greeting card so you can share the gift of poetry with a friend
  • free shipping!!!

Preorder your copy now!

Raw and achingly honest, This Will Not Last is a collection of poetry that captures the fluctuating emotions that lace life’s pathway. 

Wonder, grief, happiness, and heartache all have their turn to shine in this collection, ultimately bowing to the truth of their transience…and the sturdy realization of God’s unshakeable goodness.  

this death 

this shedding 

of all I’ve known 

must come before the rays of sun 

burst bright upon my soul 

to wake 

a seed of what’s to come. 

this death 

this dying will not last 

this, too 

this, too 

this, too, shall pass. 

I’m so, so excited to finally be able to get this book out to you all next month!!!

– Laurel

First Love – a poem

First Love – a poem

Hello, friends!

I wrote this poem the other morning…aren’t you so grateful for a God who makes all things new?

Sidenote: I cannot wait to smell the white clover again this summer.

when I stop to think about it…

I miss the days when

I first fell in love with You.

when all of life shone because of

the beauty You sparked in my heart…

when everything reminded me of You –

a frosted oak leaf

the scent of white clover

a baby’s giggle –

and nothing seemed

too daunting to face

with You.

You haven’t changed…

my heart has calloused.

oh, may I be

tender again to

Your whisper

Your smile

Your thoughtfulness

in choosing my heart as

Your treasure.

You make all things new…

God bring me back to

the passion of my first love.

P.S. If you’d like to get a signed copy of This Will Not Last, stay tuned for preorders opening up next Monday!!! *bounces off walls*

Photo by Timothy Dykes on Unsplash

I’m rallying a street team!

I’m rallying a street team!

Hello friends!

If you’d love to play a part in sharing my poetry with the world, this post is for you!

(If you wouldn’t love to play a part in sharing my poetry with the world, this post attempts to convince you into loving that idea.:) )

If you decide to join my street team, here’s what you can expect:

  • an email with more details, soon!
  • a role in helping me launch my book into the world by sharing graphics + posts I’ve already prepared (unless you’d like to write your own posts, which is definitely encouraged!!!)
  • updates on my little book’s progress
  • fun bookish freebies

Sound like fun? Fill out this form to join the team!

I’d so love to have you on board! Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

Also… the title of my poetry book will be announced on Monday, January 17th. Provided the hostile winter has not frozen my fingers off, thus leaving me incapable of typing up the announcement.

One can only hope and dress warmly.

Freeze not!

❤ Laurel

Another Poem

Another Poem

Hello, friends!

Graduation – for me at least – is/was a bittersweet time. Yes, you’re saying goodbye to several things. But you’re also opening the door to SO much!!

Soak it all in, graduates. Thank God for the past. Trust him for the future. This poem is for you.💕

I’m striking out into waters unknown –

Waters I’ve spent hours dreaming of.

In my dreams the ocean called my name –

The wind sang a melody that

gripped me.

I longed to dip my toes into the waters of

adulthood.

But my childhood

and the familiar

have twined about my throat and blossomed

memories.

The smell is sweet –

how can I tear them away?

I look ahead at the ocean stretched before me.

It’s darker than I thought.

Rougher, too.

Tears well in my eyes as Time pushes me to the

water’s edge.

I’m scared.

How can I make my way in such a storm?

I don’t even know where I’m going.

Slowly, light ebbs across the waves,

and I can see the path I’m standing on

continue

through the sea.

I cannot see its twists and turns,

but the path is

still there.

I’m simply traveling on –

doing what I was made to do.

Slowly

tenderly

I pluck the flowers from the vines and

tuck them away

where their fragrance will always

linger near.

I take the tangled vines,

gently loosing their grasp.

I let them fall now to the shore

and I step into the sea.

The Day You Died for Me

The Day You Died for Me

Another poem for you today!

The spikes they drive into Your hands
Are pinning down the base demands
My flesh makes of this life.
Poured onto You is all the wrath
I’ve pent up for myself – this bath
Of pain was meant for me.
Whippings
Stabbings
Piercings
Shame –
Hatred
Malice
Awful stains
Of sin were bringing these on me
But You stepped in, said, “Let her free –
I love her – punish Me.”

I weep here as I hear You groan
In agony I have not known
Because of what I’ve done.
How could I bring such awful pain
On You – the One Who speaks my name
With love and songs of joy?
The sky is black – Your voice is loud
“It is finished!” hears the crowd
Before You bow Your head.
Rumblings
Crumblings
Quakings
Dead
Are stirring –
Now lift up their heads
As sin’s dark curse forever breaks –
The broken heart inside me shakes
In awe of what You’ve done.

This matchless love – like crashing waves –
Has swept this haughty white-washed grave
And washed it of its rights.
I see this life’s not truly mine –
You gave me Yours for all of time
The day You died for me.
Such love deserves all I can give –
All that I want now is to live
To hear You say, “Well done.”
Friendships
Free time
Choices –
They
Are Yours –
I pray, Lord, day by day
To live this life to make You proud
And unashamed to be my God.
I love you, Lord – I’m Yours.

Three-Year-Old Poem

Three-Year-Old Poem

First of all, the photo has absolutely nothing to do with this poem. But who doesn’t like knotholes on old doors?:)

As the title says, I wrote this poem three years ago this spring. At the time, it was my pride and joy. While I can now see many of its flaws, it still holds a special place in my heart. One of the reasons I love it is because it points me back to simple truth. I hope it can be a blessing to you, as well.

I don’t understand.

I don’t.

There are times, Lord,

When I,

The pen in Your hand,

Long to

Spring from Your mighty

All-knowing

Grasp, with a cry of,

“No, no!

That isn’t the way!

Here!

Let me show You how!”

But that

Is as silly as a toddler

Grasping

The brush of a masterful artist.

A clock

Does no good without clockwork

And so

I do no good without You.

With no

Master I lie here, my ink pouring

Out

A miserable, meaningless

Blot.

But in Your loving hand

My life

Is a song – a beautiful witness

To You.

So here – take my tears, though many

There be

And do what You will with them.

And here –

Take my years, though few they may

Be

And use them to glorify

You.

Love Song – A Poem

Love Song – A Poem

Happy Monday, all!

(It really is a happy Monday… the weather is amazing here right now.)

So… I procrastinated this past weekend. Imagine that. So today scampers around and fills up with a few time-consuming surprises. Thus, we ditch all plans for a thought-provoking article (because it remains half-written at present) and default to…

A poem.

I wrote this one last month, I think, and I really love it. I hope you do, too.:)

can’t remember

a time

I didn’t know

You loved me.

always

each day

You sang a song of love

to me

so freely

it didn’t matter how

I’d hurt You with

the words I’d said

the thoughts I’d

cherished

You

were always there

chasing

my heart

You were

relentless

in Your love

still are

I wonder what I did

with these dirty hands

to earn

Your faithfulness

how could I be so

vile

and yet so

loved

by the God of

holiness?

blood

drips

down

love

gave

all

for me

I’m free

free to love You

delight in You

serve You

give all for You

some call it

mad –

is it

mad

to give all

for the

One

you

love?

who gave

all

for

you?

friend, meet love.