The Untangling by Allison Cain

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God, untangle my heart. The knotted mess of it seems daunting to tackle.

I become overwhelmed and when I’m honest a little afraid of what lies within the knot that has remained so long. I have easily ignored the ball wound tightly together and moved on as if there’s nothing was there.

As I consider the intricate overlapping of experiences through life lived, my mistakes, and the ones others casts upon me, I sense how elaborate the knot has become, how it has so subtly taken up residence and hidden in the depths of my heart.

I understand the work of untangling will be difficult, messy and delicate but I’m ready for the unbinding – I’m ready to see clearly; be free; live in grace; and experience vulnerable love from you and those around me.

I’m ready to be tethered tightly to you instead of fear, the past and lies.

May the untangling of my heart be an offering to You as the love, grace and life you intended to flow from my heart now will . . . with the untangling.

Amen

Playing God? By Allison Cain ~ Psalm 139:1-11

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When I’m playing God . . .

Expectations take center stage and overwhelm a thirsty heart. Heart break seems undeniable as the holes are filled with temporary fixes and crumbling putty.

When I’m playing God, joy dashes quickly from within my reach and it seems no longer attainable and long-lasting. Worldly vices and quick fixes glide easily off the shelf but are only bandaids. The illusion of control brings an unrealistic comfort and feelings of loneliness permeate the day. When I’m playing God, the best intended plans fall short and fail.

BUT God, when I let You in . . . When I let you be You and step aside.

You ease my weary soul, put expectations in their place, and You share true peace that shimmers with hope. Heart break still seems unmendable, but the holes are filled with the golden Light of your unending love that makes all things beautiful. God, you fill my heart with a secure treasure that can’t be taken away. Treasures of great love, adoration, assurance, and joy. No thief can steal what You gift us.

May I never know a day without You, Father!

Looking for a Summer Bible Study?

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Melissa, our resident “sinner” of The Sinner and The Saint, has you covered!

She will be leading the study ~ Little Faith, Big God by Debbie Wilson. Hosted by Knowing God Ministries.

WHEN? Thursday Mornings (via Zoom) from 10 – 11:15 a.m.

God designed spiritual growth to be an ongoing journey of trust. By exploring the examples of biblical men and women who failed, got up again, finished well, and were commended by God, Little Faith, Big God will inspire you to persevere in your faith. Present-day stories and guiding questions invite personal reflection, application, and discussion. Little Faith, Big God will equip you to trade your self-made superhero cape for a dynamic, grace-filled relationship with our big God.

REGISTER HERE

Buy the Book Here

A Prayer for the Weary Soul by Melissa Bell

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This prayer came from my time with God this morning. It was 5 am, I didn’t want to get up, I was completely exhausted, in fact I still am. It’s not the kind of tired that can be cured by a few more hours of sleep. It’s a weariness that seeps into every facet of life.

So, I wandered out to the living room to sit with God in the stillness of the early morning and this prayer spilled out.

I know I am not alone in this. We all need to learn to slow down and focus a bit more on soul care. If you find yourself in a similar season, I hope you will find time to lean in to Him and allow Him to speak to your soul.


“Dear God,
I’m finding that the secret to contentment is resting in You, relying on You, running with You. I am weary, but when I keep my focus on You, You replenish my soul and renew my strength.

I don’t want to look back and realize that I have “wished and sighed” my life away. I want to lean into the present moment, finding all of the beauty and glory this life holds. May I focus on You and find the sweetness in each moment, relishing in the glory of your creation. God help me to make it so.

I want my children to soak up these days with joy and look back at their childhood with a smile. Create a bond in our family that is founded in your truth, love, and grace.

Lord, help me to lead boldly and love well. Help me to sift and sort my schedule in a way that honors You and the calling You have placed on my life.
Thank you for this life you have given me. May I honor You in all that I say and do.
In Jesus’ Name ~ Amen”

Download a free printable version of the prayer on our website at SinnerandtheSaint.com.

Follow Me! or Follow me.

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By Allison Cain ~ John 21:15-19

Follow Me!

The exclamation point demands attention. Seems to speak up and over a selfish heart, busy mind, disconnected spirit and stubborn child. When my heart loses focus and my bearings off course, must you exclaim loudly as a loving reminder “Follow Me!”? When my once attuned heart has diverged from Your path and our time feels more like oil and water floating alongside but never mingling without forced shaking. When my locally crafted walls dampen Your presence and truth. When your mysterious promises read more like fiction than fact.

Please proclaim “Follow Me!” And add more exclamation points if needed.

BUT

Follow Me.

When you are close. When my heart is aligned with yours and we are like sticky Velcro. When my insides are modest and humble. When I’m open and aware of subtle nudges from Your eternal force. When you are close, it seems you need only say, “Follow Me.” Period. Gently and quietly spoken.

I hear you when my spirit is nurtured and supported through your living word. Your undeniable presence engulfs me like a quiet breeze and instantly makes me stand taller embracing the extraordinary gift of your elegant love.

So what’s it going to be?

Father, may you always be so close that you only need a “.” To reach me. I pray the only “!’s” needed are those of celebration and thankfulness for moments of an obedient heart. May my locally crafted walls only dampen the noise of the world and never your gentle voice.

Download a free printable version of this poem and more on our website at SinnerandtheSaint.com.

The Offering, By Allison Cain ~ 1 Chronicles 16:28-34

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What will I offer the Lord today?

It seems as if it should not be a mere hand me down, but do I have anything original?

Certainly it should be handed over willingly, but on occasion my hands clinch to tightly to false things I continue to hold dear. What do I have that is worthy and sufficient for such grand love? Is it worth the effort if the gift feels insufficient and meager.

What will I offer the Lord today?

Will it be humility, time, gratitude, stillness, repentance, obedience, tears, laughter, conversation, reverence or intentional joy?

A warm and inaudible voice whispers, “Anything given with a heart of sincerity will do.”

So, I will offer intentionally.

Being careful not to find myself so absorbed and distracted, frantically collecting nuts like dashing squirrels, forgetting to embrace the moment of offering because of hurried planning or something that isn’t promised – tomorrow.

I will offer gently, but with purpose.

Not as a acorn slamming to the ground. Instead, like the gentle release of a single leaf that falls effortlessly to the ground from a fall tree. I will dare to give the offering gracefully to Him.

God can handle both the gentle and the forced, but a slow, tender, honest offering feels more like friendship than obligation.

If all I can offer is a longing gaze up to the Heavens for His assurance and silent strength. May it be given out of genuine love and adoration.

What will I offer the Lord today?

Download a free printable version of this poem and more on our website at SinnerandtheSaint.com.

It’s Not A Journey by Allison Cain ~ 1 John 3:1-3

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I captured this image just moments after we had spread some of my Dad’s ashes between the two trees in this photo. The ray of sun marks the exact location. Wow, right!? I know! We serve, love, and follow an incredibly loving, compassionate, tender Father who truly feels our pain, sees our tears, is by our side and wants us to see Him. May we all get caught up in His rhythm and never miss Him.

It is a journey or a rhythm? I beginning to believe it’s more than a journey or a walk with God. More than this linear landscape I’ve embraced for so long.

A journey feels fretfully long, lonely, exposed, and is so much easier to judge or be judged by the length and distance you have come. Two steps forward and three steps back they say.

But a rhythm, a rhythm allows you to step into the faithful symphony. Always there and waiting for us to step up and join in the beauty – just as we are. Some days a trumpet and others the old lady on the front pew who sings off key. But all are welcome.

God created this world in a rhythmic fashion that swirls and breaths in all that’s around us; here and in the Heavens.

His glory is in the rhythm woven into heartbeats, waves of the ocean lapping on shores, steady seasons, phases of the moon, and sunrises and sunsets.

He is in the rhythm of raindrops falling, rocking chairs, the beating of butterfly wings, the hum of a content child, twinkle of a star and the sway of trees in the gentle wind or wild gale.

He is in the rhythm of labor pains and the final breaths at death, laughter and tears that flow down warm cheeks, buoys riding the waves in the vast expanse of the oceans, a newborns cry, the blooming of a flower and even the rise proofing bread.

Step into the gentle movement and rhythm that surrounds you. Join the rhythmic symphony of creation just as you are, with no judgment or expectations and simply ask, “What melody shall I play today?”

Download a free printable version of this poem and more on our website at SinnerandtheSaint.com.

Enlarge My Wonder by Allison Cain

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Jack C. Trabucco (Daddy to me) Nov 2, 1928 – March 2, 2022

My heart is full of gratitude in the sorrow. Gratitude for the glory of a vibrant sunrise and how its beams light the room and face while legs sit cross-cross on the floor. For fingers that strum cords and create space for singing and healing.

For quiet rooms, double fist bumps, drips of water for a dry mouth, revolving doors, deep laughter and even deeper grief. Gratitude for warms nights, meals that sustain, unimaginable forgiveness, gentle grace and mysterious joy. For everlasting peace, promises that can’t be broken, the squeeze of a hand, soft whispers and forehead kisses.

Gratitude for a trio of roaming geese, a Gypsy who sees Heavenly realms, Cardinals in a crowded Easter tree, the ringing of ancient bells, the slamming of gates, deer with briny lips, yellowed paper and stacks of memories to treasure.

Gratitude for ashes, salty tears that silently glide down cheeks, reluctant black dresses, homemade cookies, birthday cake and casseroles that bolster weary souls.

For friendships new and old, warm embraces, crowded church basements, perfectly smoked Texas brisket, the clink of of pile of nickels, the sharp click of military Niels, wispy skies and wide open spaces.

In the sorrow there is gratitude to be found, if we open our eyes to the wonder and look for God among us.

I wrote this to remember all of the incredible moments of wonder and miraculous signs that God was near as Daddy drew farther from us and closer to Him and his eternal home. I miss you Daddy!

Download a free printable version of this poem and more on our website at SinnerandtheSaint.com.

A New Day

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Cape San Blas, Florida

Hints of morning twilight are slowly erased by the rising sun. The glory of a new day is gently dawning in slow motion. A new day full of mystery, expectations, and lingering hope from past miracles; experienced but not forgotten.

A new day of boundless possibilities, unimaginable grace and a steady flow of possibilities.

A new day to hold fast to ancient assurances given by a constant God who is, was, and always will be.

A new day to choose surrender over self, embrace uncertainty, and a willingness to be led to places we would never choose to go.

Whatever comes in this ordinary day, the reminder that laughter is great medicine, we are never alone, our tears are written on scrolls, number of hairs accounted for and the ultimate sacrifice was made on our behalf cradles us close as the conclusion of this mysterious day draws close.

And then, just as the morning twilight was erased by the rising sun, the night comes, nonchalantly but with deliberate grace and rhythm once again. From vibrant sun to twinkling stars. Stars that seem to hold the place of the sun as it rests until morning so it can rise with the Promise once again.

The promise that light always comes, His mercies are new every morning and His rhythm of creation is steady and secure; just like His great love. Amen


Through the practice of Lectio Divina (an ancient way of studying scripture), the Lord is opening my eyes, heart and mind to the mystery and beauty of His glory and creation. I’ve begun expressing some of His revelations to me through poetry or prose. I look forward to sharing some of that with you on my blog. It’s been a while!

Download a free printable version of this poem and more on our website at SinnerandtheSaint.com.