Drop-Kick Me To Jesus!



It has been a very long time since writing in here. I actually paid money to have an ad-free way of sharing the blessing of the written word with all of you, and I’m frustrated with myself for waiting so long to post.

To be honest, I’ve hesitated, because many of my previous posts were about the struggles and effects of separation and eventual divorce. I’ve come to a place of healing, and am moving on, but don’t necessarily want to post about that.  I also wasn’t quite sure if the Lord wanted me to continue writing in here, or actually self-publish a whole book of poems elsewhere.

In the meantime, I’ve written a bit here and there, reading my poems at Simonka or simply tucking them away in my files for future use.

Then the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

Along with the rest of the world, I was slowly caught up in the news that a new and deadly virus was on the loose. Though not particularly fearful, I took appropriate precautions and then followed the governing authority’s orders to stay home.

Without an actual daily commute, and only having to traipse to the fridge for lunch, you’d think that it would be easy to enjoy a daily quiet time with the Lord. Not so. My stress level jumped up, from adjusting my work duties home, and not getting in the outdoors as often. This effected my digestive system, and my energy level suffered. It’s a vicious cycle.

Fast-forward a few weeks. I’m settling in a bit, but still melancholy. This afternoon my dear friends and co-ministers at Simonka called on video chat. Tonight we would normally be converging at the shelter: I would be sharing a poem, and Tom would give a message. They shared what the verse of the night would be: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight.” (Proverbs 3:56, NIV) They challenged me to get outside more and to write something to go with his video message two hours later.
This is what I wrote:


I’ve been sharing pretty pictures and memes
and many an inspiring Bible verse
in an effort to encourage with each post,
but the world just seems to get worse.
Yet my hope remains in You, Lord,
and though I’ve continued to convey it,
actually, lately I’ve been quite lax —
not often taking the time to pray it.
Spirit, drop-kick me to Jesus!
To again worship at His feet!
Don’t let me forget Your perfect love
or miss out on Your presence so sweet.
For too long I had been reduced
to merely surviving each uncertain day,
but you haven’t changed! So drop-kick my all
in front of Jesus once more, I pray.
For You need no empty sacrifice or mere words,
no online posts, though kind and true —
You just want ME — my deepest desires
surrendered, looking fully to You.
So pick me up, dust me off, Lord,
I humbly seek Your wisdom, Your face;
Drop-kicking my own understanding,
I lean into Your guidance and grace.

Ladeena Ashley

I’m glad the Lord used my friends to spiritually drop-kick me, but most of all, that God never changes, and we can count on Him even in these strange times. I hope and pray that you know this truth for yourself. No matter my feelings or thoughts about what’s happening, I always have hope I’ve found through Christ. It’s the key to my sanity, strength, attitude… everything.

Thanks for reading. We’ll see what happens next!

Blessings to you!

©Ladeena Ashley – All rights reserved – content and photos

Delightful Details

Perfectly fallen leaf in the sidewalk… I found it that way, honestly!


A good friend of mine tagged me on a Facebook post for a photo-a-day challenge, with a different theme or concept to capture and share each day. The post was by Operation TheraPic, an organization that promotes photography as therapy for veterans who suffer from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and other negative effects of their military service.

Photography is certainly therapeutic for me, and I’m all for supporting our armed forces, so enthusiastically I accepted the challenge. After all, I already notice things that most other folks walk right past, naturally living life every moment as a scavenger hunt for blessings of all kinds, in both abstract and visual realms. The beauty of God’s creation especially draws my attention, but I also enjoy contrasting the natural with man-made structures and items. Overall, to me the world is a wonderland of colors, shapes and patterns, every perfectly or uniquely placed bug, flower, leaf, shadow or reflection is like a little love note from the Lord.

Here is a poem I wrote while reveling in nature, and how it points to heaven, our true home:


All manner of shapes
combine in harmony
Heralding with flicker of leaves
and sun-dappled symphony
The splendor of what’s to come
once our souls dispense of earth,
Holy communion with the Creator
and consummation of our rebirth.

All manner of sounds
– Nature whispers God’s love
Rustling leaves like ocean waves
point to the Father above.

Gentle avian choruses
bursting into exuberant throngs
foreshadow the glorious melodies
of worshipful heavenly songs.

All manner of evidence
of God’s providence and grace,
given freely, with ample to share
when we pause and seek His face.

©Ladeena Ashley

It feels good to discover and document life’s beautiful details in pictures, but lately I’ve collected more images than I have composed my thoughts in words. As often happens when out shopping, while looking for one thing to grab, there are dozens of other things that catch my attention. I’ve already taken more pictures than usual this month!

Details are a blessing, but I also can get caught up in amazement while totally missing the bigger scene. It’s like a colorful connect-the-dots but I don’t see the whole page. Instead I notice a few tiny circles in groups like polka dots, while others are tie-dyed or form interesting patterns. I get lost in child-like wonder. On the flip side, when I am anxious, I often miss what is most important while fretting over the minutia of life. In either case I must step back, review the situation from the beginning and connect those dots in order to see the bigger picture. I’m getting better at being objective.

Dogged by details?
They say the devil’s in the details – life is definitely more challenging than we all thought it’d be when we were kids – but we can navigate them with God’s help! He created every last molecule of existence, His handiwork shows His love, He delights in sharing it with us (Psalm 19), plus He sees the beginning and the end of it all (Revelation 22:16). None of our problems are too small that God is not concerned, nor too big for Him to handle.

When we’re overwhelmed and dragged down by worries, we must stop and pray, casting those cares on the Lord (Psalm 55:22). At times we simply need to step back and and take a deep breath every once in a while to notice the blessings around us, so we can once again regain that sense of wonder, purpose and joy. When we connect the dots and see the big picture of grace, then we can more joyfully move ahead into whatever adventure the Lord has for us next!

For me, the best kind of details are in God’s Word, worship, fellowship with other believers, and enjoying His creation. As I delight myself in the Lord and look to Him, He gives countless blessings along the way that keep me smiling (Psalm 37:4)!

Hopefully the photos I share for the challenge are a blessing for others. I always look for life’s little blessings and then look for ways to share that encouragement and hope with others! I hope and pray the same for you.

Blessings to you, this day and always!

©Ladeena Ashley
2018 All Rights Reserved (Blog content and photos)