Monday, May 16, 2011


"Behold, I will do a new thing, now it shall spring forth; shall you not know it? I will even make a road in the wilderness and rivers in the desert. This people I have formed for Myself; they shall declare My praise." Isaiah 43:19,21

Last year when S. turned 32 I struggled with how to celebrate. I could see the workings of the Spirit but S. had gone through low lows and I had watched him self-destruct in front of me. It was a hard year to kick up our heels and celebrate.

Ahh...but this year is so sweet to commemorate. Coming to the end of himself and his own ability to succeed- even in ministry- was what ultimately brought him to "deny himself, take up his cross" and follow Christ. When Jesus says "whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it" (Matthew 16:25 ) He doesn't just mean to become "Christian". S. was a believer for years but only in the past year and a half was brought to such a deep place of surrender. He lost everything that felt 'secure' in his world. Instead of throwing in the towel or making things happen on his own, S. got on his knees and waited for God to begin building life into him.

And now...I could write for hours and kick up my heels. As S. has responded to the Lord, I have seen God focus him, teach him discipline, and feed Truth into him. For the first time since we've been married S. committed to do a Bible Study this past year where he didn't teach or lead. He studied for his own relationship with God and God met him there.

S. has sought wise counsel and it has refreshed both of us to build friendships with people smarter and wiser than we are. He has slowed down to fall in love with our family. Not only is he intentional with our own kids, he has allowed God to break his heart wide open to love Little Girly as his own. It didn't happen automatically. He prayed that God would put him in the right place as he was tempted to have his guard up, not knowing if she will become a Taylor. He believed God was telling him that in this season he is Little Girly's dad and chose to take on that role without inhibition. His love for her is evidenced by the way that she grins, squeals, and throws her arms in the air when he walks in the room.

I have seen the Lord take a man brimming with creativity and ideas and I have watched Him chisel away to give clear direction and specific vision. S. started BIG OAK with about fifty possible directions to take it. God gave us a fantastic board of directors and the right connections to move in the best direction in this season.

A week and a half ago I had the privilege of working the BIG OAK booth at a leadership conference. We got to share about a;life and give mini-presentations to people about how it will work to have this devotional tool online. Watching the vision catch, hearing people from churches and Y*uth for Christ say, "This is a need! How can we get our hands on something like this?" fueled my excitement for what we do.

I am excited about a;life and how the Lord has pulled pieces together for it. Even more so, I am excited to have a husband listening to the Lord. Watching him at the conference, I was excited about his ability to communicate vision and his growing passion to get students grounded in Scripture.

My prayers continue for my husband. I pray this year that God would continue to quicken S.'s ears to His voice, to continue renewing his mind and transforming his spirit. But mostly, this is my year of thanksgiving. It is my year to step back and praise God that the prayers I prayed for a decade are being answered in gracious ways.

This morning at 3am I sat on the couch with Little Girly and her stuffy nose, which was preventing her from sleep. S. stumbled out with some great bed head and said we might as well be up together. As we watched a sitcom and rocked Little Girly, I marveled at the irony: somehow as S. and I are at our poorest (materially) we are experiencing the richest of all seasons. That can't be anything but the work of the Lord. May we get to experience more of God's richness this coming year- Happy Birthday Sean!


  1. Happy Birthday, S.!

    Rejoicing with you in ALL that the Lord has done this year.

    :) :) :)

  2. When God restores he brings into place His work not ours. We have seen in our own lives where He takes you when you die to self. Happy first birthday Sean. I am excited to see where the Lord takes the Taylor family. Shilo you are an incredible woman. Love each other as if each day is last and let God handle all the rest.
    Joyce Panzero

  3. Yes, truly the Spirit is moving and doing a mighty work in the Body of Christ, calling us to see ourselves for who we are - one Body, with one Lord and one calling - our love and unity IN CHRIST alone!
    I sure do love y'all. It is such a blessing to call you family!

  4. your family seems lovely.
    thanks for sharing your journey.