Friday, July 15, 2011

Friendly Friday: Karen Daly Cook

First, I want to mention that, since it's nearly my one-year blogiversary (Is that right? I only know how to spell made-up words that I make up), next week will be chock-full of favorite posts—your favorites, my favorites. Perhaps some you've never had the opportunity to read before, or, if you've read them before, read them with a fresh set of eyes.

If you can snag a pair. Eww.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy next week's flashback!


Now, on to Friendly Friday!

Poor Karen. She was supposed to be my Friendly Friday post last week. And the week before that. But I somehow missed her in my schedule, and I'm just now getting her post to you.

I know. I'm awful. I'm lucky she'll even let me put it up now!

But that's just what kind of gal she is, folks. She's always so encouraging and funny as a Twitter pal, and her posts over at her blog, The Couch, are always clever and heartfelt. Only someone this nice could put up with my bumbling antics!

So, without further ado, I present to you the long-suffering Karen Daly Cook! Don't forget to follow her on Twitter, "Like" her on Facebook, and visit her blog!


Extreme Makeover: Heart Edition

All of us have had times in life when we feel tired, run down, beat up and abandoned.

Life comes at us hard and can be as unrelenting as a winter storm. Driving wind and rain pelt us with circumstances and relationships beyond our control.

These storms leave behind damage, both seen and unseen.

Over time we lose our luster, our outward swagger and pretty soon the paint is peeling, windows are broken and the elements are beginning to ravage our inner dwelling.

I am a visual person. Kind of simple really, but I see life in pictures.

I like to think of people as a house. Not an apartment, or a condo or your run-of-the-mill, cookie cutter tract home.

I envision people as grand homes with large inviting porches that wrap around like a smile encouraging conversation and granting entry to the heart.

But sometimes our smile dims as we wrestle through the daily-ness that is life, and in our hurting and brokenness, we close the door to our hearts and retreat.

Inside, we take a look around and see that, over time, the stress and hurt has caused fractures in our heart and our hope is fading like old wallpaper that once was vibrant and glorious.

Our boundaries have been crossed so many times that the shiny finish has been stripped away. As we tour the rooms of our heart we realize that we are in desperate need of renovation.

There are many make over shows these days in the world of reality TV.

All those programs pale in comparison with the power and majesty of the Holy Spirit and His ability to make you new and restore you to the glory that God intended for you.

He knows your heart. He created you. He knows your hurt. He bled for you. He desires healing, restoration and wholeness for you, for He made you in His image and for His delight and glory.

Restoration is hard. It is messy. It is inconvenient. Restoration is necessary. Unlike the makeover shows that begin with complete demolition and destruction of the existing structure, God begins with the heart.

He rebuilds. He molds and smoothes and soothes the places of the heart that are hurting, leaking, and broken.

He creates in us beauty from brokenness.

If you are reading this and find yourself stripped down to the studs and exposed for all to see your tender heart, I pray that you allow the master contractor to renovate your heart.

© Karen Daly Cook, 2011


  1. Loved it. Reminds me of the Beauty for Ashes verse Isaiah 61:3 ~ To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.

  2. I love this, usual, you hit a home run. :)

    And Rachel...don't beat yourself up too much...things happen. ;)

  3. Shari - Isaiah 61 is a favorite verse and definitely was in my mind when I wrote this post.
    Marni - thanks for the encouragement!

    Grace & Peace ~ Karen


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