What is the Holy Spirit? (my favorite possession)

Izzy's favorite possession

Dear Izzy, Max, and Kate,

This morning I sat in a chair in our living room with the sun rising and coming through the windows behind me. You curled in my lap Kate and we listened to “Somewhere Over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World” by Israel Kamakawiwo ‘ole. I rubbed your back and mommy smiled at us from the kitchen.

You’re getting older – 7 in a couple of weeks, so I hold you every chance I get.

“Remember when you danced in the kitchen with Izzy when she was a baby to this song?,” I asked Mommy.

I think we both thought for just a moment about how fast time passes. Something felt peaceful.

Last week in my men’s Bible study we talked about Christ being alive in each of us. We talked about what the Holy Spirit is and how the idea is often difficult for Christians and non-Christians alike.

My friend Hovey, who is a fulltime missionary in El Salvador, played a couple of songs and we sang as a small group – outside of most of our comfort zones, but it was humbling and by the end of the songs I had tears in my eyes – I wasn’t the only one.

I shared how I feel the Holy Spirit in my life. Times I’ve felt that presence that could only come from something beyond my understanding:

I have been crucified with Chris and no longer live, but Christ lives in me. – Galatians 2:20

We shared as a group a few examples of feeling the Holy Spirit at work in us. I wanted to share a few of those times with you:

  • When I wrestled for the state championship in 1993 I could feel a strength beyond my own in the closing seconds of the match. Nana prayed on her knees for days and I know my physical strength came from her strength of Faith.
  • Every time I see someone baptized I come to tears of joy that could only come from beyond myself. I don’t know why I cry, but I do – every time.
  • When I sat alone on the beach one morning at sunrise in my late 30s and begged God to speak to me about the future he wanted me to pursue. He calmed the sea right in front of my eyes and sent an old woman to talk to me about life and the future, and assure me that everything would be okay. I’ve never experienced anything like the calm that morning on the beach.
  • While descending Flagstaff Mountain in Boulder, CO on my bike at high speed everything slowed down in my mind and I looked around at the Flat Iron mountains and began to sob tears of joy at the beauty and His goodness.
  • When I sat alone in a cold empty sterile hallway at Baptist Hospital while the doctors performed a spinal tap on Mommy before delivering you, Max and Kate, 10 weeks early. I felt someone wrap their arms around me and slow my breathing.
  • Tucked into a corner, where I wasn’t supposed to be, I watched doctors and nurses frantically try breathing tubes of different sizes on you Kate while your vital signs wavered. Someone held me and comforted me. I didn’t feel scared or desperate in that moment, only peace.
  • After weeks of only looking at your through a plastic incubator bed, when I was finally able to hold you both in my arms Max and Kate. Overwhelming Love comes from God and the Holy Spirit.
  • When I hear a song…sometimes it’s a worship song and I’m brought to tears. These are just a few examples of a list that could go on for several pages. A few examples: “Here I am to Worship” by Chris Tomlin. “Heaven” by Live. “Wave on Wave” by Pat Green.

Izzy, you’re growing up and everything about you is what I wish I were: smart, athletic, caring, popular, confident, humble. You have your “tween” moments though when your hormones at this age cause us to hit bumps in the road. 

Yesterday mommy found the paper you did at school at your most precious possession. I felt the Holy Spirit again and He encouraged me through you as He’s done so many times before.

The Holy Spirit lives inside of you. If you listen He’s always there. Constant prayer running in the background of your life asking/ready to rise to the surface of your life.

I love you,


TRAINING: Its been a rainy week and I’m in the middle of my “off season”

Sat: rest

Sun: Ride 25 miles

Mon: Swim 1000 / Run 5

Tues: Swim 800

Wed: Run 5

Thurs: Rest