Thursday, February 26, 2015

Words of Truth, Words of Life

I can't wait to read her next book, her next blog post (, the articles in the news or magazines that also have hung on her words.

Kara speaks truth--life-giving truth, freeing truth. Truth that is Jesus; Jesus and the grace he offers is the only truth that sets free.

"And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free."
John 14:6 (underlines mine)

Ahhh, I breathe more easily. Kara by the way she lives gives me permission to take off my mask, to live out-loud, and to live in the freedom Jesus offers.
Kara and me last month.

I've mentioned my friend Kara before. You may know her too--she is my friend who is living with terminal breast cancer. As I type she is experiencing the care of hospice.

Cancer is a horrible, horrible disease. But the horrible laid bare Kara's love for Jesus, her identity as his precious daughter, and her heart for his people in new and deeper ways. We have all been blessed.

I started my Thank You for Kara list last summer. It keeps growing.

In no special order, let me share my Top Ten Thankful-for-Kara List.

10. Kara appreciates our engaging with her, our questions for her. But she requests, Please ask, not how I'm feeling, but how am I living? And that is her question for us as well, How are we living today?

9.  Kara lives vulnerably. she shares the hard; she lets us into her real. Kara is human and sometimes human is not pretty. Kara doesn't offer her religious persona, she offers herself. 
II Corinthians 2:14 and 15 come to mind, "But thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere. For we are the aroma of Christ ..." Vulnerability is different from transparency. Kara asks, she wants our thoughts too. Kara is an aroma of beauty.

Kara and Jason
8.  Kara lives with intention. she asks God and she asks herself, How does my mothering look? What does it look like to love Jason well? What do my friendships look like in the midst of my reality? Because she asks, she hears God's wisdom and she lives well in the midst of her harsh. 
James 1:5, "If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God,"

7.  Kara lives her creativity. she communicates uniquely, refreshingly, and in fun ways. she always draws her readers in. Kara is a writing tutor for me and many others. "But what happens when we live God's way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard--things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart ... able to marshal and direct our energies wisely." 
Galatians 5:22-24, The Message. 

6.  Kara models the beauty, the strength, the attractiveness,  and the safety of grace. May that grace spread to us all! Grace, not just graciousness. Grace allows Kara to be Kara and then Kara loves well.

5.  Kara trusts the goodness of God. Many times her words, "Hard is not the absence of good" have challenged and ministered. Brennan Manning in Reflections for Ragamuffins says, "The troubled eyes and furrowed brow of the anxious believer are the symptoms of a heart where trust has not found a home." (page 7) Trust has found a home in Kara's heart.

4.  Kara knows Jesus knows. In the same volume, Brennan writes, "Christian living makes no sense unless we believe that at the moment, Jesus knows what hurts us. Not only knows but, knowing, seeks us out." (page 67)
from October

3.  Kara continues to live well while fading (her word). I love her phrase, "As long as I have breath to breathe ..." Her sense of humor is alive and well. "I am a gifted napper and pill taker." (I bet there are others who would like the gift of napping.) Speaking of her littles, Kara says, "Let's hope they can at least find their shoes and get their teeth brushed" ... every mother's hope.

2.  Kara allows others to minister through her story. "Let it be to me" the title of a blog I penned during Advent came from Mary's response to Gabriel's message to her. Kara's life truthfully echoes Mary's words.

1.  Kara reigns in life! "For if, because of one man's trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ." Romans 6:17 (underlines mine)

Thank you, Kara. I am blessed to you friend.     sue


  1. Thank you for this top ten list. I hear many of Kara's words in my head daily, and pray for her constantly. She truly is such an inspiration. You've summarized her well.

    1. Thank you Susan. And there is so much more that could be said. The two that most stand out to me, is How are you living? And that Kara REIGNS in life.