lightning || a poem.

last year, I got the pleasure of coming to inspired poet, and I heard a poet speak. and one of the things that she said was that we need to use our voices even if were afraid and even if its just a whisper. and I have a friend and mentor who has told me that I have something to say. and in our first session, my counselor told me, he reminded me that nobody has everything together.

these are the things I want to tell you. and this is my whisper.


here is the finished product
on fluorescent light display
you can see all the right brushstrokes
from behind a measured line
put on a platform because
this is finished, i swear
it is perfect
a masterpiece on display because
i know all the right places to
hide. it is easier to
hide. it is safer to 
hide behind layers of dishonest truth
i am okay
a lie told often enough becomes the paint

i brush on layers of half-truths until they turn to hues of
this is too good to touch

When Perfect Isn’t Enough

Perfectionist is not a word I would have used to describe myself.

Maybe that’s what should’ve told me that was exactly what I was. You see, I knew that I wasn’t called or supposed or able to be perfect. So, I denied that that was what I was striving for. I wanted excellence in everything, I wanted to make the most of my college education, I wanted to have it all in its exact place.

Perfection is easy when you can hide, when you can locate the nearest exit. If you say just the right thing, you can lie while telling the truth. At the very least, you can talk about hard parts, the weak spots, and the pain in a way that makes it seem like you’re walking out of it and don’t need any help.

I didn’t want to be weak. I spent this semester feeling weaker than ever. I kept writing fiction and poetry because it’s easier to hide behind the words of a character, easier to hide behind metaphor than actually say concrete words for myself. In real life, I mumbled because I couldn’t believe my words w…

How Deep the Father’s Love


How deep the Father's love for usHow vast beyond all measureThat He should give His only SonTo make a wretch His treasure
Four-hundred years of silence.
The Jewish people went through wars and conquests and bondage. They struggled to understand the purpose of the Law. They struggled to see God in the waiting.
And here, there’s you. You see hard years and strife-filled families. You live wondering when things are going to get better. You fight the same battles, the same shame, sin, and scars. You struggle to see God in the waiting.
They held to a promise. Pages of prophecy paving the path of the Messiah, the Anointed One, the Savior. And with angel’s word and sheep’s bleating, He came.  The fullest expression of God, born under a tyrant king and legalistic religious rule.
How great the pain of searing lossThe Father turns His face awayAs wounds which mar the Chosen OneBring many sons to glory
Thirty years of life, three years of ministry.
Jesus walked the regions of Judea and Galil…

What 2017 Means to Me

When I look back at where I was a year ago, I can't believe how much my life has changed.

Sitting at home after my first semester of college, I start thinking about exactly where I've been over the last 12 months. I see the fear and anxiety that burned. I see a girl who painted over her identity with insecurity and trust issues. I see a girl who let discouragement keep her from pursuing what she loved.

I didn't blog very much in 2017. It doesn't really make sense, because one of the few blog posts I wrote this year got a huge amount (for me) of views. You would think having a post with 20 times the usually number of views would inspire me to write more. Instead, I went exactly five months without posting anything. I wanted to be everything I saw other bloggers being, but I didn't think I could measure up. So I didn't write.

Words got harder. Despite them being my passion, I stopped believing they were worth anything. I was desperate to speak, but my mouth was …

Why Your Relationship with God is the Greatest Gift

Going to university terrified me.

I had done well in community college classes. I had chosen a school 20 minutes from home. I had amazing friends at my home church. And I was scared.

High school was tough for me, especially in terms of friendships. I was worried I would carry those problems into college. I've had crippling anxiety because of school before. I was worried that perfectionism would steal my joy.

Every morning, I wake up a little earlier than I have to, and I spend time with God.

How little I appreciated this habit before college. I read my Bible consistently long before I moved into my dorm. I listened to worship music. It was really good. But while I was at Gateway Student Conference in July, I heard God say to me, "this will be one of the hardest seasons of your life, but it won't be the same as other hard times. This time, you know I'm with you."

I know this couldn't be a time I neglected my relationship with God. So many things--friends, sch…

How to be the One Who has it All Together

Going to college for the first time brings a lot of changes. Many of those changes are amazing! However, there is one thing that should never change: how put together you are. With so many new people around you, you don't want to give the impression that your life isn't perfect. "Hadley," you may ask, "How do I make sure everyone thinks I have it all together?" I'm afraid this is no simple task, but here are a few tips to get you started.

1. Don't cry Maybe you are completely lost in your math class, and even though everyone else understands, you can't figure out what's going on. Perhaps your best friend posted on her story a video of her having the time of her life with a big group you weren't included. There's a chance you're having a terrible time figuring out financial aids and loans and feel like you're going to be in debt for there rest of your life. However, crying is not okay. Hold it back and deal with your problems …

Fully Known, Fully Loved

I read a lot about being a freshman in college before I went to college. I have several Pinterest boards dedicated the topic and, while I felt prepared for tough classes and gross caf food, I did not feel prepared to make friends.

Last month, I moved into Dallas Baptist University. I'm only 20 minutes away from home. I go to the same church I've been going to since I was 9. In a lot of ways, it doesn't feel like a huge change. However, if you've gone to university or if you ever talked to someone who attended college, you know that maybe the biggest change happening is internal.

Meeting new people terrifies me. And college is filled with new people. New people who don't know me, don't know people who know me, haven't heard things about me, only know me from stalking my Instagram.

A reason why meeting new people is so frightening to me is trust. For the first several weeks of university, I was paralyzingly anxious because I didn't believe I could trust …