Category Archives: Passion Pursuit

Grateful for this Woman of Influence

This past weekend I received an email from this special lady pictured Linda Dillow- wrote forwardwith me in the photo. Her name is Linda Dillow.  The email is the forward she has written for the book, Lovely Traces of Hope.

Linda has been my mentor in life, marriage, and worship most of my adult life, though we have only met a dozen times or so.  I received her first book  as a wedding present in 1979.  I have read all of her books since.  (I’ll list my favorites at the end of this post.)

It has seemed that just when I needed to take a next step, she was putting out the next book.  When I was invited to lead a worship team to Ukraine, she was the speaker at that same conference.  No, we didn’t plan it.  When Rennie and I were on sabbatical, she invited us to stay in their home for 10 days while they were away.

For whatever reason God chose to place her in my life over and over again, I am eternally grateful.  She led me in a journey of contentment, worship, marriage, sex even.  She encouraged me to find contentment in my life and see my words, attitudes, work, and my waiting -even my pain – as an act of worship. She led me in worship, not in songs of worship, but in worship of two hearts bowed at the sofa, remembering who God is, recalling what he has done and praising him from the core of our beings.  She invited me to see that my marriage was a reflection to my world of God’s love for us.  She challenged me to want more for my relationship with Ren.

Linda is one of my heroes!  No, this is not hero worship.  This is gratitude.  I trust her.  I know she is a woman who pursues God and points others to him, because I have seen her do it.  Not to one or two women, but to thousands, perhaps more.  Not for a short time, but for her lifetime.  I know. I’ve been watching her for 37 years now. Linda is the real deal. She is a woman of influence!

That is why I am humbled and grateful that she has written this forward for the book.  I could make you wait to read it in the book, but I just had to share it.  Take a peek. Here’s what a woman you can trust has to say.

FORWARD for Lovely Traces of Hope.

What does a mom do when her beautiful, vibrant fifteen year old daughter is suddenly, harshly, instantly gone? Grieve? Of course. Go on a long journey of seeking God and healing? Yes. Kathy did these things but also did something very unusual.

After Leisha died, she opened her daughter’s journal and found Leisha’s “book.” If she flipped Leisha’s journal over and upside down and opened the cover, Kathy found her daughter had started to write her own story. She even included the title page.

Lovely Traces

So Kathy began writing to finish Leisha’s story.

The Burrus family: mom, dad and three girls came to have a vacation in our basement in Colorado Springs in 2002. It was a special time to get to know Kathy, Rennie and their three lovely daughters, Caitlin, Brielle and Leisha. A few short years later, Leisha was singing in heaven and Kathy was finishing her story. As I read Lovely Traces of Hope, I smiled, I cried and I wrote these words to Kathy about the book she and Leisha had written.

Thank you for walking through the dark tunnel to His Light

Thank you for writing so honestly and vulnerably for me and others about grief and pain and how to walk….believing that there is HIS Light somewhere ahead

Thank you for “taking your clothes off” and being real

Thank you for revealing the beauty of walking the Christ walk

Why do I think you should read this book? Let me use Leisha’s name to tell you.

L egacy

Both Leisha and Kathy have much to share about building your legacy. Kathy says, “When we intentionally NOTICE what really is happening, it gives us an opportunity to reflect on what we are learning from it. More importantly we see what God has been doing. We NOTICE His fingerprints, HIS HAND on our everyday, ordinary lives.”  That is especially true when we reckon with the painful areas that may leave us paralyzed in some way. Many times just “noticing” allows us to reframe the events and their effects on our future.

E ncouragement

As a mom, Kathy gave me hope, showed me how to face problems with teens, how to reach inside myself and be willing to look honestly at “me.”  We all face loss. Loss is not the defining moment of our lives, it is how we respond to loss that matters. Kathy helped me see in a new way that healing is a progression.

I nfluence

Not many fifteen year olds think about being an influence—they are too busy thinking about boys, clothes or the Friday night party. Leisha wanted to be MAD (Make a Difference)! At her tender age, she thought about being an influence and leaving a legacy. Teens need to read this book!

S incere

Kathy is honest. Listen to her sincere words. I hesitate to write these next pages. Offering them here is a risk. What will you think of me if I tell of the places in our lives we didn’t have it all together? What if I take off the mask enough for you to see me as I really am?

H oly

Leisha and Kathy’s book points you to the Lord God Almighty. In pain. In grief. When life is a dark tunnel, Kathy discovered that God is still Light. She says, I had to learn to NOTICE God showing up differently.

A dvance

This book is an advance. It takes you forward in your thinking, in your faith, in your personal journey toward the legacy you are creating. Books have been written on grief. Kathy achingly walks you through how she processed her grief. Books have been written on how to help your teen and whole family walk through trials, Kathy shows you how her family did it.

Leisha and Kathy’s combined story is for every mom, every teen….really for everyone. I highly recommend Lovely Traces of Hope to you. I promise you it will lead you to hope as it did me!

LINDA DILLOW
Author
Calm My Anxious Heart
Satisfy My Thirsty Soul
What’s It Like to Be Married to Me?

Co-Author
Intimate Issues
Passion Pursuit
Surprised by the Healer

Want to get updates or join the launch team for Lovely Traces of Hope? click here!

Does God want me to be Sensuous?

So what do you think?  Does the Bible teach us to be sensuous women? Some of you are thinking Kathy’s talking about sex again.  Maybe! But maybe not!

I have had some interesting dialog with women who desire to be all that God has created them to be.  But they are not sure what to do with issues of sexuality/ sensuality when they are single and longing to honor the Lord.

 

I have heard one woman after another share that much of the pain in their life has to do with wrestling with issues related to sexual or sensual issues.  There is God’s view to reckon with which has been confusing to women on so many levels.  There is the world’s view which seems to indicate to just ‘be free’ sexually.  However much of the ache these women now feel is because those behaviors don’t feel free like it does in the movies.

So can we be single and sexual?  What does God want from us if he created us to be sexual beings, whether we are married or single, while the Bible teaches that sex is reserved for marriage.

Dr. Juli Slattery of AuthenticIntimacy.com hits the mark as she addresses this topic in her 2 minute Thought called Can I Be Single and Sexual?  Juli reminds us that our sexuality is not compartmentalized waiting for marriage, it is integrated into all the aspects of who you are; intellectual, relational and spiritual. 

We are geared to immediately associate sexuality with sexual pleasure.  But it actually serves a much greater purpose.  Juli goes on to say that sexuality is about intimacy and relationship. The core aspect of our sexuality is the yearning to be known and share intimately with another person, which is expressed fully in marriage.  My sexuality as a woman deeply impacts how I relate to others- outside the bedroom. 

(Be sure you listen in to hear the rest of Juli’s comments. There is a wealth of information for married or single women at authenticintimacy.com.)

As I pondered how we might experience intimacy that was not sexual, especially for the single woman, I dug a little further with a word study on the word SENSUOUS which is defined as “anything that is pleasing to the senses”.  In other words, anything that we touch, taste, see, smell and hear.  There are many ways we can experience intimacy in

  • a furry kitten resting calmly in our hands
  • a delicious meal shared with friends
  • a beautiful sunset filling our sight
  • a pie baking in the oven smelling so good, tasting even better
  • an incredible symphony
Each of our senses are faithful, loving reminders that God is breaking into our world to speak… Click To Tweet

These are examples of sensuous things make our senses happy, but they also nurture us and allow us to know a deep joy and possibly meaningful intimacy with relationships of family and friends.

I understand that many times the effects of past encounters, or abuse related to sexual activity can taint the purity of a sensation. Certain senses can become triggers for memories or behaviors that you are desperately trying to avoid.

So often, rather than risk something “unpleasant” (though it might be much more damaging than that word denotes), we end up closing ourselves off to everything that might stir our senses.

But remember, God is a redeeming God.  He created you to be sexual.  He gave you your senses to live fully alive.  Yes, there is pain!  Yes, there is pain that needs healing, and your senses maybe part of that.

But each of our senses are faithful, loving reminders that God is breaking into our world everyday to speak his words of love to us.

What is it that God is inviting you into as you consider how to live sensuously as a sexual being?  Maybe you have some questions about what that would look like.  I know some women who are making it work.  Let’s have that discussion together.

In the mean time, Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him. Psalm 34:8

1400! What could this mean?

An amazing thing happened!  Ren and I sat down for 6 minutes to share our heart for marriages & intimacy through this little video.

WE HAVE HAD OVER 1400 Views
since we posted it on 3 days ago.  Amazing!

So I’ve had to ask myself what is all the interest about???  I’ve asked a few people and here is what they said.

1. Our daughter said, “It’s just good to see the two of you doing this together.”  It is fun!  We are enjoying it too!  For a long time, I’ve helped him with his job, or he with mine.  We are enjoying doing this together- even if we each facilitate our own class.

2. One person said, “I was trying to figure out what you did to make Rennie do this video? ”  I simply asked if he would be willing.  He is all in.  He is really seeing the value of this material- this discussion about a topic that is often hushed.  He is seeing men- not just husbands, but all men respond to the truth about their God given sexuality and the tools they gain to deal with their desires in a godly way.

3. Another said, “I just saw your passion for my marriage and it was contagious!”    If that’s it,  Hallelujah!  People! If we don’t make an intentional stand for holiness and purity in our sexual thoughts and relationships, the enemy is. If the marriage in a home is damaged, our families will be that much more vulnerable.  We will be attacked on every front; our thought life, our response to visual stimulus, or the touch of another, or the attention of another.  If we are married, let’s choose our spouse.  If we are single, let’s choose wholeness!

Women- God is calling us to use our gifts to make a difference in our world.  We have more options for building the marriage we long for, or living passionate lives than we are willing to acknowledge.

Men- God is calling you to be valiant men!  Men that recognize the roles, the desires God has given them and is willing to take the challenge.

YES IT IS HARD! Yes it is!  Ren and I have experienced that over and over again in our marriage.  But God didn’t design us this way destroy us, but to give us the opportunity every day to choose Him!
To choose life for ourselves and those we love!
To reflect Him to our world!

Consider joining the GHC groups being offered regarding this topic. The start date has been pushed back to Saturday, January 24th It’s not to late.  CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO OR TO REGISTER!

If you are from out of town, email me at kathy@greenhopecoaching.com.  I have some options for you too!

Come on ya’ll!  Let’s do this!  1400 more times!!!!