lyrics to a new song: Express it Confess it Embrace

this song just reflects how i feel about people increasingly growing inward – i guess growing isn’t the right word. we’re regressing to become more introverted & more self-reliant. sometimes i wish i could push a time machine button & swooosh -we’re all back to the 50’s like in ‘the truman show’ when there were no garage door openers…no self-check-outs…no email or texting or atm’s. it’s like the goal these days is to decrease human interaction as much as possible. i dont know bout you, but that makes me sad. so i wrote a song about it – wanna hear it, hear it goes:

express it confess it embrace

by, Chelan Rene’ Russ

l see you’re holdin’

quite the load

can i walk beside you

down this dusty road

see, i know you’ve got a story

ya know it…never hurt – no one to talk

but it seems like society…keeps takin’ a step back from unity. we replace a

face w/another machine & we praise advancement of technology

what would happen if we did life face to face?

express it, confess it, embrace

make the time to touch…take a chance and feel

express it, confess it, embrace

you – gotta want to


free up a hand to

serve a brother; realize

how love is the best investment

you don’t always bank on a return

(prechorus/ chorus)

(dont ya think our… lives would change if… {repeat chorus})

go on, express it, confess it, embrace

go on a walk, party on your block, send a letter in the mail, bbq
volunteer, spread the cheer, raise
a hand tell ’em what you’re goin’ through
express it, confess it, embrace

Death over Coffee

My friend came over for coffee today.

This woman has seen death up close. She’s felt it and smelled it and heard its cry many times. She knows its tactics, aftermath and sorrow. She’s even experienced the pain of a close family member who has taken their own life.

We talked on my living room sofa about life. And sex. And accountability. And school. And schedules. And abandonment. And purity. And death. And the stages of grief.

It was six years ago for her, when her 17 year old died. It was ruled a suicide.

I read her the poem I’m writing about my Gramma Grace – my memories of her life and death. This month it will be the 18 year anniversary. She challenged me to stop censoring myself and just be free to express my feelings, because who knows…someone may read it and feel the same way and no longer feel alone. Who knows…it may help someone else in their grieving journey.

Then we pulled my green patio chairs close, almost smacking foreheads together… joined hands, and prayed together as my neighbor walked around outside, brushing his teeth. Yeah, Austin’s a weirdo.

Then we hugged.

It was a good afternoon.

My “free write” about pleasing God and walking from glory to glory to glory…

Today I’ll just “free write”. I remember that was my favorite time during school – during my favorite class, Creative Writing. Just write with no regard to spelling or puncuation…just write until the teacher says stop.

Today I’m tinking about how little life is. how short it is. and how small we are. yet with great possibility and great opportunity to impact others. every person has their struggles. it seems so much more beneficial to fight our battles publicly than privately. whats the worst that could happen…people think you’re weak? whatever. people are weak. everyone’s weak without the strength of Christ. that’s the only thing that makes any difference in a trial. so if i ever tell you or you hear me telling anyone, “dont tell anyone we’re going through this, but…”  feel free to call me on it – because those words most likely come from a root of pride. i dont want pride, but rather humility. i want people of like-faith and beliefs to come alongside me, offering words of affirmation and encouragement – telling me they know I can make it through, in CHrist’s strength, and for his glory alone.  people who are not of like faith might want to support me and might think they’re supporting me, but they have a different sense of reality than i do. their hope is secured in different things and people than my hope. the sourse is different. so i tend to shut that type of support out & ignore it…not becuase i think i’m better than they are. no, not that at all.  i just htink its human nature to surround yourself with like-minded people. and if one tends to focus on the negative & talks poorly of people around them, they will probably seek out and gravitate toward others who do the same. likewise, if one wants to think nothing but positive thoughts, stay away from gossip, believe in miracles and the ‘impossible’, that person will probably surround themslvs w/others who think that way.

i want to be surrounded by people who spur me on to better works – who challenge me in my thinking – who see behaviors in me that are off-base according to the Word of God – an dwho aren’t afraid to let m e know, in love. now, if it’s not compared to the Word of God, as a basic frame of reference, than i dont really care what they think of me. i’d really like to be less & less of a people-pleaser than i used to be – no, i have had a good long season of that & all it does is breed insecurity. you’d think that being a God-pleaser would bring about more insecurity, seein’ as he’s, well, perfect? but really, it’s more comforting. cuz heres the thing- i know he loves me for who he created me to be – for who i am – and if  i’m not measuring up to peoples standards, but i’m pretty sure that I’m doin my best,  than that is ALL that matters. i was just talkin w/a co-worker about that today…the scripture that reads, do everything as if you were working for the Lord and not for men. whats the whip cream on that coffee, is that i dont have to go to any extravagant length to try & convince him of my efforts or intentions. he knows my heart down to each miniscule motive. and if a motive is wrong or i did sin, then his Holy Spirit is right there, gently telling me where the road back to righteousness is. i love that!!!!!!

how does one get from glory to glory to glory? i think by never being satsfied in their walk with Jesus. its so weird, just when i think i’m good or content, i come across some new revelation and find – theres MORE. what? more? yes! there’s more to this thing called Christianity! its like that old movie, the ABYSS, when they went deep sea diving into this dark cavern and it just kept going further and further down, til you were like, ok, the ocean cant be THAT ddeep. but it pushed your mind’s limits to think, well, maybe it can! (then it got all sci-fi & there was this alien in another underwater world & thats beside the point). i bet thats how astronauts feel too. . . like how far could man travel outsd the earths atmosphere? does it ever end?  WHAT the heck is THIS? it looks like a whirpool – lets call it the Whirpool Galaxy! but look at THAT further up ahead…WHAT THA?!  – we’ve already come 3.7 billion light years & seen so much. what could possibly be ahead of us?

I want my walk with Christ to never end like that. to keep seeking out new ‘glories’ – new revelations that  bring me hope and spur me forward, no matter what i’m facing- great triumph or great failure or great fear or great depression or great contentment or great joy.  I am so happy that i have my husband alongside me to experience life w/. he makes me think. he’s one of those ‘challenger’s.  one of his favorite quotes is “can i challenge you on that?” to which i us’ly reply, “NO.” but then he’ll go on.

i wish we both had a good hand full of friends like that too. it’ll come. we have waited for the roots to grow. we have awaited the wounds of friends, but for years, the vast majority have skimmed the surface, barely making a mark on our skin. the Lord has some in mind for us. perhaps he will guide us and give us a divine appointment with them soon.

“if you delight yourself in the Lord, he will give you the desires of your heart”. God, what ‘s the next glory? I can’t wait.

My Multicultural Moms Meetup

I have been blessed to experience life with some wonderful ladies. Eight to nine months ago, Kathleen had an idea to start a neighborhood mom’s group to connect with each other & learn from each other. She approached Evie, who brought it up to me, and so it began – the three of us, at McD’s…and now we have seven or eight of us moms, all hailing from the great city of Hutto, & meeting every other week at various locations. It’s been really cool to see how different we all are…yet the same in many ways.

We’re learning how to lean on each other…to open up & trust each other with sensitive issues & prayer requests. We’re sharing our thoughts, resources, defeats, celebrations…and so much more… …not to mention some Dang-good multicultural dishes! Here are just a few shots of some of us at the Hutto McD’s and Ricoco’s Latin Grill in Taylor – just a-havin’ a good ol time.

Above: Evie, me…totally faking it, for the camera!

Above: Kathleen, Rosa, Venus, Coco, Nesrine, Evie & myself…

surprising Coco for her b-day

Above: Moms @ Mc’D’s ~

the only place in Hutto that’s kid-friendly and nearly free