I can’t believe I’m doing this! I must be crazy!? I am just a semi-retired counselor and a mom and a worship leader and older and … who am I? My family says, “Just a little bit crazy!” (pun intended, but it’s true, that’s what they are saying). Why am I so compelled to go out there and do this? To take these songs I have written out on the road and share them? In one sense it’s frightening. In another sense, exhilarating. I liken it to when I did my first triathalon. Once I finished it, the sense of accomplishment was so overwhelming in a good way. At that moment I felt like there wasn’t anything I couldn’t do, if I put my mind to it and God’s will is in it. I am a child of God and I love Him. I want to BE His will in my life. I find my salvation in Christ alone. This is what my blog ministry stands for: “No Longer Opposed”.

Paul said these words to Timothy as he started his ministry and it is this scripture that I will cling to as I am now embarking on this journey with my official Where I Am Tour. I am compelled to follow God’s will in my life for everything He has done for me, including creating me for His good pleasure. I would rather fear Him due to His awesomeness and greatness than to ever look around me and fear what others may think of me. I am on earth for God’s purposes, not my own. Please pray for me to keep this front and center and pray for me while I am on the road ’til I return home.

“For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands, for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God, who saved us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace, which he gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began, and which now has been manifested through the appearing of our Savior Christ Jesus, who abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel, for which I was appointed a preacher and apostle and teacher, which is why I suffer as I do. But I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed, and I am convinced that he is able to guard until that Day what has been entrusted to me. Follow the pattern of the sound words that you have heard from me, in the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. By the Holy Spirit who dwells within us, guard the good deposit entrusted to you.” (2 Timothy 1:6-14 ESV)

God has entrusted a calling to my heart. I don’t know why He has chosen me to go forward with this, in my fear of facing the giant world out there I say, “Lord, I am too small!” but I know he has equipped me. Therefore I say, “here I am God, send me!” I somehow find His favor by His grace… “Thank you, Jesus, for this opportunity to serve you and your kingdom. I know you go with me…before me, behind me and beside me. The battle is Yours and I will stand. I will be strong and courageous because Your Spirit lives in me and makes me strong and courageous. I will share the hope that is within me with others. May Your love abound more and more in my heart, so that I will learn to love your people the way You love them.” Amen

The Great Adventure has begun! I am so excited to see what God will have in store for me. I will be traveling for nearly 6 weeks without my family, but will be seeing many friends and extended family along the journey! Please, if you think of me, pray for my safety and for God to do His will through me at every stop I make! See you on the the road! And if I don’t see you, be sure to pick up the new CD “Where I Am” through my store here on the website and be refreshed and inspired!

Love and blessings!



2 days left (sort of)… !!!

Track 9. Intentionally

It’s a good thing you can’t see me right now, because I am starting to cry as I write about this one. I am not sure if it’s because I know my CD is releasing in less the 48 hours or because of this song that I am going to tell you about.

I hope my son doesn’t read this…(jk)

Actually, this song was inspired by my wonderful son, Nathanael. He, like you and me, was born wonderful in God’s image. I always longed for a son and God gave us one on our last try! We call him our love child! We didn’t know it when he was born or when he was younger, but Nate is on the Autism Spectrum and was diagnosed later in life (6th grade) with Pervasive Developmental Disorder, NOS. Basically, Asperger’s type.

When we didn’t know for sure what was going on with him, he struggled to find his meaning and purpose in his identity. He LOVED Jesus at a very early age and accepted him when he was only 4 years old and baptized soon after. He loves to have deep theological discussions about his faith and God. But he also knew there was something different about himself. He thought he was stupid. He couldn’t have been further from the truth. He started being bullied in elementary school and middle school. In first grade we took him to Children’s Hospital in Seattle and they knew he had some type of cognitive impairment but they just

Nate when he was in 5th grade
Nate when he was in 5th grade

couldn’t put their finger on it. Nate also struggled with a developmental vision issue where he couldn’t see things in stereo if his eyes or brain were fatigued, and was also diagnosed with strabismus. He had balance and coordination issues and just wasn’t your athletic kiddo, no matter how much we had hoped. He was very down on himself and would get very depressed and angry.

I missed it as a therapist when he was little, but had started putting all the pieces together and by the time he was in 6th grade, we pursued the evaluation. Sure enough, the diagnosis was confirmed. It was hard to diagnose it though, because with our parenting abilities, we were able to extinguish some of the behaviors he had that would have been more identifiable in assessment (the eye contact, biting on the arm, banging of the head on the wall, rocking, etc.). It wasn’t until we had the firm diagnosis that he began to understand more about himself and actually how intelligent he really was! And it was at this time that we were able to help affirm him even more about who he was (and is) in Christ.

One day Nate and I were driving home from my picking him up from school. The leaves were turning their fall colors and he said something really profound. It was at that moment, I was inspired with these words. I said to him, “Nate, do you know that God made you intentionally and that He has a purpose for your life? He knew you were going to have Autism and that you needed parents like your dad and I to help you get everything you need to be successful in this world.”

Nate had been resentful from some of the ABA tutoring we had put him through the couple of years earlier, but at this time he told me how much he had appreciated all that we were doing. He spoke of insights he had about himself and how he noticed similar behaviors in other kids that he met, that were like him. I was so amazed at what he was learning. He was finally getting it. He was learning that he was just fine the way he was. He was becoming resilient in his identity.

After finishing the song (Nate had heard portions of it with me writing it here at home) and getting the ruff track back from Nashville, I asked him if he was ready to hear it. Of course, he was. We laid on the floor in the Great Room here and stared up at the ceiling while I played the track on the Bose speakers for him. After we listened to the song, he said, “Mom, that’s me!” I looked over at him and said, “Yes, Nate, that is you! And God made you so wonderful!”

This song is general enough in the lyrics to speak to anyone who has a developmental, mental, emotional or physical disability. For those who are broken-hearted, who feel worthless and believe that no one loves them. God loves you so VERY much! He gave you His Son, Jesus, so that you can become whole in Him. No one can take away who you are in Christ. He loves you just as you are. You have meaning and purpose and He wants to reveal that to you. Don’t ever give up. Don’t throw your life away or try to end it. You are a great treasure! Do not seek the praise of man or let others determine your worth, instead, believe what God says about who you are. You are fearfully and wonderfully made! He knew you before He knitted you in your mother’s womb. He created you in His image and of all of His creations in nature (which He said were GOOD), He said you are VERY GOOD! Read about yourself in Psalm 139!

Ask Him into your heart today, by asking for forgiveness. Let Him show you how much He loves you. You are not your disability or your past. You are beautiful…a precious child of God.

9. Intentionally
©2013 Jen Haugland
Jen Haugland Music (ASCAP)

What’s the matter on your heart
A little trouble in your soul?
I’d like to draw it out of you
And be there to help you sort it out

I know He loves you so and I’m hoping you will know
Nothing ever happens by chance

For you were made so intentionally
There’s purpose in your life, ev’ry detail’s in His hands
With all the beauty of your intricacies
Nothing’s ever wasted, I know He understands
Because He made you so intentionally

If you could step outside yourself
And get another point of view
See the precious child of God
That I see in you

I know He loves you so and I’m hoping you will know
Nothing ever happens by chance


Every hurt that you have been through, all the things you know you did were wrong
Can bring you one step closer to where you belong


Blair Masters
Blair Masters

Mark Baldwin & Gary Lunn
Mark Baldwin & Gary Lunn

Session Players

Mark Baldwin (guitar)
Gary Lunn (bass)
Blair Masters (keys)
Ken Lewis (drums)

In my Advent readings today I was reminded of Simeon in Luke 2:25-32 and a most precious painting I dearly love and wish I owned a copy of by Ron Dicianni of Simeon’s Moment which was inspired by this scripture:

Simeon’s Moment by Ron DIcianni

“Now there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, and this man was righteous and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. And he came in the Spirit into the temple, and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him according to the custom of the Law, he took him up in his arms and blessed God and said, “Lord, now you are letting your servant depart in peace, according to your word; for my eyes have seen your salvation that you have prepared in the presence of all peoples, a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and for glory to your people Israel.”

After He was circumcised on the 8th day according to Jewish custom, He was given the name I?sous (what we call “Jesus”) which is of Hebrew origin of the name “Joshua” meaning “Jehovah is salvation.” This was the name that the Angel Gabriel had told the virgin Mary to give to the baby that she was about to conceive. Don’t you just love the intentionality of a name? Jesus is salvation!

I imagine how overjoyed Simeon was as he held the Savior of the world! I really love this print so much because of the expression on his face as he held the precious babe, Jesus, knowing what he knew and the imprint of the world in the background. It brings this scripture alive for me and brings me joy and hope! Jesus came for all of us and Simeon knew it! We too can have that same joy as we come to fully understand the price He paid for us. He had to come to earth as fully God and yet fully man to make it real for us and show us a way back to Himself. He knows we need real life examples to follow. And once we believe by faith, He places His Holy Spirit in us guaranteeing what is yet to come!

He has allowed us to see Him as He came to earth in human form and through this wisdom which has now been revealed to all mankind. Will you accept this redemption in your life? The Savior of the world is calling your name…

Hebrews 7: 24-25, NIV

“but because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood. Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.”

Think on these two things:

1. He saves completely those who come to God through Him – not partially and not only if you do x, y, z  just right. Completely doesn’t mean there is anything left unfinished. Your salvation is complete. It was complete at the cross when He sacrificed and offered Himself up for your sins once and for all. If you have come to God through Christ Jesus you are saved completely, entirely and to the uttermost. There is nothing more you have to do for it and no one can take your salvation away from you. Rest in that.

2. He always lives to intercede for those who are saved by Him. As you are struggling in your faith and walk, as life gets hard, as friends betray you, when you are tempted beyond what you think you can handle, as you lose your job, when you don’t know how you are going to feed your family or where you will find another job…as you struggle to see hope in dark times, as you wonder if anyone really cares about you anymore,  as you find yourself tired and weary…. Jesus knows what you are facing in that very moment, He knows what you need and He LIVES to intercede on your behalf before the Father. What does it feel like to know that you have a Savior who approaches the Father on your behalf? Who stands ready to speak up for you. Would you keep going? Would you pass up that temptation? Would you do whatever it takes knowing that on the other side of eternity someone is working on your behalf?

In honor of Palm Sunday: Matthew 21:1-17, ESV

In thinking about Jesus’ triumphal entry to Jerusalem, He fulfilled the prophecy of Zechariah so it would be complete “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout aloud O daughter of Jerusalem! behold, your king is coming to you; righteous and having salvation is he, humble and mounted on a donkey.” Zech 9:9, ESV

When we think about his triumphal entry into our own hearts (when we first placed our faith in Him), did we hope that He would take all our suffering away, right then and there? Did we hope, like the Jews of His day, that trusted and believed in Him, that He would establish His kingdom right then and there and reign righteously, forever? That we wouldn’t experience any more suffering at the hands of others? Much to all of our earthly disappointments, He did not do what we thought He should do, but He did what was greater for us by establishing His kingdom eternally, which is yet to be seen here on earth – except in the body of His Church at this time. He has set an example of entry… a low and humble righteous king, not any different than the low and humble babe born in a stable with smelly animals and a feed trough not fit for a king…yet it was! Because it was all a part of prophecy being fulfilled. And there is still more to come. God’s word is true and He is faithful. Scripture proves scripture!

What if, our pain and suffering brings us down low in humility to learn how to be the same servant that washed the feet of those we love and those whom we know will betray us. Will they find out who He is as a result? What am I willing to allow in my life? Will you and I allow Jesus to cleanse the temple of our hearts? Because that is where He went next… and after He did, He healed the blind and the lame and the children praised Him. Will we see? Will we walk? Will we praise?