Tuesday, September 22, 2020


1. a period of paid leave granted to a university teacher or other worker for study or travel, traditionally one year for every seven years worked.
"she's away on sabbatical"

Within the last seven years of being married and having different seasons of life including having our first son and to the current season of having our second son, I feel like each season is somewhat of a sabbatical from one thing to another. What I mean by that is, as I reflect on my life, there are times I look back to and wonder if I'll ever return to doing some of the things I have done in the past or if that was something I did in that season of life. Is it a permanent change or something I'll return to. A dear woman I know recently posted her reflection about the always-changing seasons of life. Her words really hit me. 

"There are seasons where visions are birthed. There are seasons where visions die. And there are seasons when visions regrow with such vibrant bloom they take our breath away. Sometimes the best thing our dreams can do is fade into distant memory, until we can let go of what we wanted to be, and embrace with open arms the full expression of what they were destined to become."

There are a lot of my visions that have either blossomed or faded in some way or another. For example, with this blog, I thought it would be something I would regularly post on. I used to use Facebook regularly to show the world my awesomeness or something like that. Oh yeah, and one time I had a smartphone that could post on Instagram like it was my day job. Recently one of my friends told me that she was considering buying a new phone until God told her, "Kari doesn't have a new phone. She has an old, crappy phone and doesn't spend as much money." Thanks, Susan...and God. 😉 I didn't think I would ever play my violin on a worship team after graduating high school and now I wonder if and when I will return. I also didn't know that I would someday have my oldest son sleeping in my sister's old bedroom and my youngest in my old bedroom. Oh yeah, and there was that one time I really thought I would never get married and just become a base jumper or something ridiculous. I never thought that I would want to stay home, take naps, and go to bed early. No, scratch that actually, I've always loved naps, since I was able to choose to take them. I am so glad that my family is the most important to me and that I would choose to be with them over anyone or anything; on most days.

I love how God knew. 

As I contemplate the past, present and future, I'm encouraged by His hand to provide all that I need and guide me into and out of different seasons of life.

I like using this blog as a way for me to share my thoughts and I use it for myself. And if anyone cares or is positively impacted or encouraged by it, great. I like that I don't use it regularly, but rather come to it very inconsistently to document just a blurb of the season of life I am currently in.

And with that, I want to document a moment my oldest son and I had the other day.

As I stared into Jonson's beautiful blue eyes, he said with so much excitement, "I can see myself in the little blacks of your eyes!"

"I can see myself in the little blacks of your eyes too!" I replied, trying to reflect his excitement with my statement.

And then I paused for a moment. Jonson is a delightfully busy boy and this moment was special. As I thought about his statement, God used it a great reminder. We reflect what we are looking at. In that special moment, I was reminded to fix my eyes on Jesus in all seasons of life. I want to reflect Jesus in my life. Thankful for those reminders.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Back to Work

For the last eleven weeks, I've been off of work and it has been AMAZING! These last eleven weeks have flown by and it's hard to think that I'll be back at work in a week. As much of a transition that these last couple months have been, I know that it is yet another transition that my family and I will go through as I return back to work. There will be unforeseen difficulties and blessings, I'm sure of it.

For as long as I can remember, I have struggled with worry and anxiety.

These last eleven weeks have shown me that I still struggle with worry and anxiety despite the growth I had noticed after working my first year and a half as a registered nurse. Having a child of my own is much different than taking care of a few patients for twelve hours. Obviously I knew that would be true, but I didn't know the amount of pressure I would place on myself on this new adventure as a mom. I was freaking out about everything so much in the first month that I describe that first month as one very, very long day. Partly because there was so much to be learned in such a short time but also because it was a big blur of hormones, feedings, diaper changes, occasional naps, a lot of visitors, and far too many worries.

I remember on the first day of having our little son, I had taken a lot of pictures and as the first night started to commence, I looked at the pictures and thought,"Every picture looks like a different boy! How am I every going to recognize my son!!!" Well, let's just say, I look at those same pictures today and think, "Why was I so hard on myself? That was the very first day I met him. Of course it was so hard to recognize him, I didn't know him like I know him now.Plus, I had just given birth to a child earlier that day and, well, my brain didn't seem to start functioning properly until week five or six after having him. But yes, that's Jonson in all of those pictures." By no means do I know everything about him, but yes, I do know much more now comparatively to the first eights hours. I've spent countless hours looking at that handsome face of his, studying his features, and watching them develop more as he has been growing so quickly! Too quickly, I might add.

As I am getting closer to returning to work, I easily find myself thinking of a lot of things that bring about worries and can start to flip on the "anxiety" switch in me. But I've realized that I need to take action when I recognize having such worrisome thoughts. STOP! No, you don't know what the future holds, but that doesn't mean the future is going to be bad. Have hope, Kari!

HOPEto cherish a desire with anticipation. More often then not, when I look towards the future, I get so anxious. The future holds so many unknowns. Wouldn't it be great if I could learn to look with excitement at the countless unknowns of the future? With hope? In fact, nearly a year ago this time, my husband and I were about to start trying to get pregnant. What an exciting season to begin! And wow! Can I just say that what has unfolded from those unknown has been one of the greatest transitions of my life: transition into motherhood. God has blessed me tremendously with a healthy son and an amazing husband to partner in life with me.

No, I don't know what this transition back to work will hold. But, I know that God is in control. He is with me. He is for me. And, one of the best things, He knows everything.

The Creator of the Universe knows me and cares for me and He has a plan for my life.

Meditating on that truth brings me excitement for this next season to unfold...

One more week...

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Dear Jonson

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       May 30, 2017
Dear Jonson,

It is SO difficult trying to think of words to capture what it has been like to transition into being your mother. Some words that come to mind when I look at you about to fall asleep on my lap: love, joy, peace, precious, handsome, beautiful, new, adventure, explore, sweet, fun, exciting, delicate, growing, my son!

You are already two months old now and it is only going to go faster. I want to take it all in as best as I can. They say, “Don’t blink or you’ll miss it!” I do not want to miss anything, but I know I will. There will be things I never thought to observe or ponder as you grow up. And soon enough, you will be leaving the comforts of our family to set out on your own adventure.

I am so excited to watch the little boy you grow into and eventually see the man you become. I hope to wisely encourage you to be who God has made you to be and who you are. I hope to encourage you to discover your talents, passions, likes, dislikes, dreams, and desires.

As you are so little yet, there are so many questions I have. 

What will your first word be? Will you look more like me or your dad as you get older? What color of eyes will you have? Will they stay light blue? What color of hair will you have? What are the things you will gravitate towards? What will your voice sound like? Will you like music? What will be your favorite food? Will you want to play sports? How many bones will you break? Will you be an introvert or extrovert?
And the list goes on and on.

You are such a gift. I am so thankful that I get the opportunity to closely watch you grow and learn. There are so many unknowns and with that, worry can easily set in this young mom’s mind. I thought I knew how to trust God with my worries, but I have learned that I have much more to learn and many areas to grow in. I recognize that there are so many prayers that need to be prayed.

I pray that you will seek adventure and explore this world.

I pray that you will know that you are loved.

I pray that you will seek wisdom, knowledge, and truth.

I pray that you will live peacefully and abundantly.

But ultimately, I pray that you will seek a personal relationship with God, which will bring forth all that you will ever need.

By no means will I be the perfect mother, but I hope to be the best mother I can be for you. I know there will be tough times, but I believe that the “good” will outweigh the “bad.”
So here is what I desire most for you: Jonson James Dietz be Jonson James Dietz.


Thursday, June 27, 2013


It's been over a year since I last blogged and so much has changed. I'm no longer taking prerequisites for nursing. I'm now awaiting the response as to if I'm accepted into the program or not. That news will be given in the next few weeks. After working at Cuppa Joe for seven years, I finally got the courage and peace, by the grace of God, to step out of my comfort zone and work somewhere else. Since the beginning of the year, I've finally been working at my second official job at Applebee's. And, as of June 8, 2013, I'm married, to the man of my dreams. Jonathan Tyler Dietz. He loves me so well. He is so gentle, caring, and sincere. And the best part is he loves Jesus way more than he loves me. There have been many many other things that have occurred since I last blogged, but those are just a few of the highlights. And yes, saying that so much has changed is an understatement.

After a year of being home from my DTS, God really started to allow me to walk away from my old self and start the process of abiding in Him deeper and deeper. I cannot fathom how He continues to pour out the amount of grace, love, and patience I have unashamedly needed and will continue to need. What a process. Becoming the woman that God intends for me to be. I'm hungry for it, yet it's the process that sometimes slows me down. Process. I kind of have a bitter taste in my mouth when I hear that word. I shouldn't. I pray that God will help me to embrace the process. I know He will. And undoubtedly, He will teach me to embrace the process through a process
Process. It's slow. It's long. It's painful. It's revealing. It's exciting. It's redeeming. It's exhausting. It's renewing. It's growing. It's life.

I once heard a sermon on how God works more like a crock pot rather than a microwave. To add just a little insight to that, here I go. A pot roast is such a delicious meal. Of course most people know to cook it in a crock pot. Which, this process takes nearly all day, starting it in the morning and having it finish up just in time for dinner. Now, if that same dish were to be attempted to be finished in a microwave with the same results, forget about it. It's not going to be the same. The long process of cooking the pot roast in the crock pot is going to bring it into completion and have it be what it was meant to be, at it's best too. And, God works with us similar to that. He would much rather have us live a life where we are growing closer to Him and allowing Him to bring us into perfect completion through quite a long process.

Not that it's the only factor, or culprit, to making it challenging for me to embrace the process, but I will say that this current "information age" really puts a damper on things. What I mean by that is so much of our current culture is instant. We don't have to go through any sort of process with technology. We can completely skip over the process and go straight to the results. We are so used to getting results without the effort that when a process to get the results we want comes our way, we stop. We come to a complete halt. I know I do it, so I can only imagine that there are others out there that do the same. People want to be great musicians, yet they don't want to put in the time and effort to learn the basics and start the process towards becoming a better musician.

These far too often occurrences of obtaining the results we want instantly is warping my perspective and mind on process. My natural tendency is now to avoid process. I want to be a registered nurse and the two-year program intimidates me. Process. A two-year process. But this can't be. It's not right. And it's not true. Process is nothing to be avoided. Embracing and enduring the process brings about so much growth, maturity, knowledge, understanding, and far more than anything that could be brought about instantly.

In fact, when I mentioned the three big changes in my life earlier, they were beautiful gifts brought about by processes. Finishing up my prerequisites for the RN program wasn't a quick process, but it was rather short and refueled my excitement for applying for the program. Also, when I finally made the change to work at Applebee's, I walked through a rather difficult process but I can't tell you how much I learned about myself and God's grace. It's been a great six months at Applebee's. I'm so grateful for that process and the process that it continues to be. And lastly, one of the most incredible changes has been my relationship with Jonathan Tyler Dietz. Exactly a year from when we started dating, we got married. Without the dating and engagement processes, we would not have the same foundation that we have now in our marriage.

Process is a blessing. Embrace the process. I know that I will do my best, with God's grace, love, and truth to embrace the process.

Jesus had to go through a very long, painful, dreadful, humiliating process. But in the end, the results were greater and more beautiful than any other process could have brought about. Jesus has given us more than life, but life abundantly. And better yet, He gives us processes that aren't nearly as costly as the one He had to go through.

Jesus gives us enough reason to embrace the process. Now, that, is one of the greatest understatements.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

I Rarely Cry .

I rarely cry. But when I do, it pours.

After my sister and I heard the news about the loss of my grandmother, Lois (Madre, Granny Weirdo, Marilyn), we had a good grieving cry. Naturally, I was the first one to regain my composure. Whatever that means. There were several moments during the first few weeks after her passing where I teared up, but never did I cry as intensely as the night of receiving the sorrowful news.

Just recently, I have been astonished to my lack of tears. Almost to the point where I was becoming concerned that maybe I was detached from the reality of my heart. I started feeling a bit odd when going to movies, sitting by friends that were bawling their eyes out, and yet, my eyes hadn't even begun the preparation for a few tears. Sure, connections are slightly there, but movies, especially, are hard for me to really connect with emotionally. But then again, I have shown this trait all throughout my life. As I've matured, I've found two subjects that have the greatest influence on my tears. More specifically, two people: Staci, my sister, and Jesus, my Saviour. 

God has been growing in me a heart for intercession. The more I know Him, the  more I see His desire for not just me, but for ALL His children. It's such a beautiful thing to see that He can love each and every one of us so much. He is able to love each and every one of us as if we were the only one to receive ALL of His love.

After hearing outstanding reviews and feedback on the newly released Christian film, "October Baby," I decided to go see it last night. The whole evening was perfect. I had never gone to the movie theater by myself prior to this so it was pretty exciting just in that aspect. Even better... I was the only one in the movie theater. I figure that Jesus and I had a date. It was pretty awesome. Yep. It was EPIC! 

The movie was heavy. For those of you who haven't seen it, it targets the issue of abortion. The young girl in the film finds out that she was adopted after being a survivor of a failed-attempt abortion. There were a few parts where I emotionally connected more so than other times, but not enough to initiate a heartfelt cry. However, there was a moment that startled the tear ducts. At one point, choosing to overcome her bitterness towards her biological mother with forgiveness, she leaves a note on the desk in the successful lawyer's office. Once leaving the note saying, "I forgive you," the daughter leaves and the mother comes into work to find it. In reading those words, the mother collapses to the floor and cries with a combination of grieving and healing. At one particular moment, when the actress was crying, I cried as well, joining in with all the women who had ever had an abortion as well as those who will have an abortion. It was the pain, sorrow, guilt, loss...just this utter heaviness that these women may and will feel after having an abortion that which felt so real to me. Although I have never experienced anything like it, I felt their pain. And tears came.

Interestingly enough, after the movie ended, I wasn't set on leaving as soon as possible. In my lolly-gagging ways, I sat and reflected. This is when the story gets better. At the end of the credits, the actress who played the role of the biological mother shares her testimony. Without even knowing, the directors of the film had given her a role that she had known all too well. She had had an abortion and had become a lawyer as well. She felt that God was giving her this opportunity to heal from her past and walk in the forgiveness that He has freely offered to her through the blood of His Son, Jesus Christ. She then continued to testify that that scene was not a scene. That scene was not her acting. That scene was truly an authentic capturing of the Lord healing her heart from her past abortion. 

I was in awe. The one moment that really struck my heart was the moment that the actress was not acting. My heart connected with the reality of this broken world. My heart ached and longed for healing by Jesus Christ. And yet, I'm in a world where the only thing it can offer me is a reality check of the brokenness in this world; a constant reminder of our desperate need for Him.

Safeway. Yep. Lately, God has been using Safeway to teach me. I could share a lot of stories of how God has blown my mind at Safeway, but for now, I'll only share two. Tonight, as I was walking in to do some late night grocery shopping, I ran into a girl from high school who was a few years younger than me. She openly shared with me about her eight-month old son, loving work, and living with her boyfriend's family. During our conversation, I could only think of how sweet she was, yet she looked so hungry for something more. 

A crazy part about this was that I had remembered her whole name from the very second that I saw her walking out of Safeway as I was walking in. I believe there's never coincidences with God. However, there are many divine appointments and many tasks that require obedience. So, after we said our good-byes, I may have left the conversation, but it didn't leave me. I just began to pray. I felt a brokenness, an emptiness, and her unknown desire to know Him and be fulfilled with His joy. My heart remained heavy, but I continued to go about my grocery shopping experience....YAY!!

No. That was not the case, but I wouldn't trade it for anything because what happened at the checkout line was something that probably changed my life and drew me closer to Him. As the cashier man was ringing up all my food, he had to use a box knife at one point to take off a sticker in order to see the bar code on an item since he didn't have long enough fingernails. He made a small comment to bring explanation to why he was using a box knife. He said he just "keeps chewing them when I get anxious." My heart instantly felt heavy and words in my mind were quickly moved out of my mouth. 

Clearly it is a blessing and not a curse, but when God is growing your heart for intercession, quite often, more than not, the Lord will tell you unknown things. I asked him when he started chewing his fingernails. "Seven." He replied with no hesitation. He didn't even have to think about it. That's when I knew what was up as he confirmed. He continued to ring up my groceries and as he shared just a snippet of his life, my heart broke for and with him. He had been sexually molested at the age of three and had said "no" when asked in court. He felt that he had no right to say yes. He felt that there was no freedom for him to say yes. Unfortunately, there was no freedom for him to say no.

This man, who I'd guess is about twenty-three, is still deeply hurt by something due to the fact that he hasn't encountered the ultimate Healer, Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit gave me words to encourage him and I confidently told him of God's truth. "Jesus wants to take your pain. Jesus is so sorry that the consequences of this broken world hurt you at such a young age. You are His beloved. He loves him." I looked him right in the eyes as I spoke to him. He didn't deny it. He kept focused on the words I had to say. He nodded. He listened. I don't think he even cared that other customers were gathering in a line to be checked out. It didn't matter because he was hungry. As I left, I assured him that I would be praying for him. I encouraged him to seek Jesus, to walk in a relationship with Him.

As soon as I got into my car, I couldn't drive away. All I could do was cry. My heart broke for this man. Oh how broken this world is. This world sucks without Jesus. There is no hope. No peace. No love. No faith. This world has nothing sustainable to offer. It was heavy for me due to seeing the reality of this broken world. Time doesn't heal. Time can only heal with the power that is found in Jesus Christ. 

Finally, I was able to wipe the tears away long enough to have a clear idea of the next step. Bible. I reached in the back of my car where I have stored a couple dozen of Bibles, anxiously awaiting for when God would place it on my heart to give it to someone. This would be #1, for Jason at Safeway. After writing his name in the small pocket Bible and John 10:10 on a bookmark, I went back into the store and gave it to him. I told him that after praying for him, I felt that he needed to have it. I strongly suggested that he read the gospel of John. He said he would read it tonight. His eyes were honest.

"Jesus wants you to know life and the fullness of life. The more I grow in my relationship with Jesus, the more I realize what the fullness of life is. I still haven't figured it all out, but I know that there's more. And as I'm learning, I know that I want others to know that fullness of life too. It's only found in Jesus. I want you to live in the fullness of life. I want everyone to. I'll continue to be praying for you."

And only by His grace was I able to partake in that. God gave me the place to be, at that time, with that person. I pray that I'll be able to see my friend from high school again very soon. Please pray that I'll be obedient to what He may ask of me when I see her next. God desires her heart and He is relentlessly pursuing her. I pray that Jason will be able to encounter God. Please pray for God to reveal Himself to Jason tonight in a sweet sweet dream. I trust that God will encounter him in a mighty way.

Tonight, I have been reminded of what it's like to cry a good, grieving cry.

I rarely cry. But when I do, He pours.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Dig Deeper and Deeper

One of the hardest parts of this blog will probably be coming to a decision on what to title it. Although I don't usually have titles picked out prior to completing my blog, I usually have a theme or phrase that directs my thoughts which are then transfered into small, pathetic words that are comprehended as a title. Yet, all the words I choose never seem to accurately depict the excitement my heart experiences in moments such as these. But I'm sure, as is the case in most, that as I write, the title will come.

Shortly after coming home from my DTS, questioning all that I was doing in life, Ashley Kline shared with me some wise words of Rainer Maria Rilke. "Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves like locked rooms and like books that are written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will find them gradually, without noticing it, and live along some distant day into the answer."

And gradually, with patience, endurance, and grace, I am beginning to live and taste life and life abundantly. I am continuing to press into the verse John 10:10. It's the life abundantly that really stirs my heart to know Him more. God is slowly unraveling a mysterious masterpiece that is indeed what He is making to be my life. I'm learning so much. Revelations seem to be coming daily, sometimes hourly. I continue to stand in awe of Jesus Christ, my need for Him, and the transformation He is bringing to my life through His grace and truth.

As much as I would love to share every detail about all that the Lord is doing and stirring within my heart, there are two reasons that immediately come to mind to support my decision to not even attempt. First off, I am tired and want to go to bed. Secondly, by sharing His intimate love for me and His desire to know me and to be deeply known by me through all that He is teaching me would rob you from your own personal walk with the Lord. To try to explain my relationship with my best Friend in a way that you would completely understand it in the ways that I would want you to understand it is impossible.

Once again, I'm reminded by a revelation I had long ago....

Words cannot contain Him.

I hope you are encouraged to seek Him and have your own personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Life....hmm....Life and life abundantly. Yep. I'm still yearning for more...yep. And I know I will also be able to do that very thing for the rest of my life. I will always and forevermore be able to yearn for more of Him as I dig deeper and deeper.

And there it is...the title.

Beautiful words, Rilke. Perfect timing, Ashley. Thanks.

Monday, December 5, 2011


God has endless ways to allow His truth to be spoken into our lives which become some of the most precious moments in life. Today, like most Mondays, I went to RE Bennett, where I received a lesson that encompassed joy, hardship, and simplicity. While processing today's time at RE Bennett, I am once again reminded that I am blessed to know my Father, Jesus Christ, and to be able to encounter Him in such a raw and real way. Perspective.

I spent the first half hour of my weekly visit in the classroom. Returning back to the room of my first and second grade teacher, I was allowed to be able to go around and help the kids. It's such a priviledge to be able to go into an area of my past but with such a different perspective. Already more than ten years ago, I now sympathize as I was once one of those students to be overwhelmed, confused, and greatly frustrated with the complexity that appeared with double digit subtraction. As I watched these kids try their best to do the mathematical exercises, I realized something greater. Perspective.

Once the first half hour ended, the second was filled with total excitement during my favorite part of my Mondays: Recess. During the thirty minutes of chaos, so many different things routinely happen. Kids are yelling for my attention, longing to hold my hand, waiting for a hug, antagonistically egging me on in a Tetherball battle, wanting me to listen, or simple yearning to be with me. At one point, a boy named Jonah came up to me saying, "Kari, I really need to talk to you." Perspective.

There was no hesitation. I wanted to hear all that he had to say. Admist the craziness, I stepped out of the current game of "ICE." (Oh the games I am slowly learning.) As I asked him what was up, he shared as his eyes began to display the reality of his emotions through the tears that threatened to roll down his face. "I was playing with those boys...over there...and they were just being mean...and they wouldn't let me play because they were always getting me out and so as soon as I got in to play...they would  get me out because they just want to play with all their friends and they don't let me play long enough and I'm not having fun...and I don't like it and I want to play and I want to have fun and then...we did 'Rock, Paper, Scissors' and I put a paper and then he put a dynamite and...that wasn't fair because we were playing 'Rock, Paper, Scissors'......and there's no dynamite in 'Rock, Paper, Scissors" and so they just kept playing and it wasn't fair and I want to have fun." Perspective.

After assembling a small group of six other kids to join Jonah and I to play the game he so badly wanted to, Jonah's eyes were no longer reflecting pain but joy...and so much of it. Perspective.

As I drove away, having said my 'goodbyes,' I was overwhelmed with God's joy, His sovereignty, and the realization that I am so much like these kids. I have recently been overwhelmed, confused, and greatly frustrated. Currently, I have a lot of thoughts about life and my life in particular. There are questions I'm asking and things that are happening in life that are comparably resulting the frustration that come with double digit subtraction and kids not playing fair at recess. However, God reminded me today that currently, previously, always, and forevermore, He looks at me with a far greater compassion than I will ever have in my heart for these kids as I watch them encounter their daily hardships. Perspective.

With a greater perspective, I can count frustrations, hardships, confusion, and trials all joy. God is the Almighty. He is in control. Jesus has asked for me to follow Him. He has invited me to a newness of life that is full and complete in Him. My Lord, Jesus Christ, knows all.

What am I doing with my life? Where am I going? How will I do it? What will my life look like? Who will I be? Why am I here? How can I add a single day to my life by worrying about the unknown? Perspective.