When I grow up…

19 07 2017

This week at my church is Camp Discovery!  Camp Discovery is a VBS in the style of a day camp.  This year we are learning that we were created by God and built for a purpose!  We are on day three and this morning I heard a story that I haven’t been able to stop thinking about….

Yesterday the Camp Director was sitting with a Jr. leader and a group of girls discussing what they wanted to “be” when they grow up.  As they went around the circle one of the girls responded, “I want to be what God wants me to be.”  The Jr. leader quickly and quietly turned to the Camp Director and responded, “Don’t they know that they are already who God wants them to be?”

From the mouths of babes.

We often ask the question “What do you want to be when you grow up?” We talk about becoming doctors and lawyers and movie stars and what it takes to be that when we are older.  It shouldn’t suprise us then that we find our identity in what we do and if we do it well.  I see whole generations struggling to find out WHO WE ARE as the reality hit us that our jobs and careers aren’t what we thought they would be.  We don’t know who we are because what we do is so scattered, sporadic and doesn’t always seem to make an impact.

The truth though is that what we do is not who we are.  

I wonder if maybe we should change the question from what do we want to be to what do we want to do?  I wonder if maybe we should focus on an identity, a being that is secure in being LOVED by God, CREATED by God… and then dream into the purposes and doing that He has for us?


What do you want to DO when you grow up as you ARE loved by God?





Who I am.

12 07 2017

I have been thinking a lot lately about the idea of who I am.  My identity.  I think many 20 somethings spend time thinking about identity as many of us move from child to student to adult.  Many of us change from sons and daughters, to husbands and wives, and then to fathers and mothers.  Many of us change from students to adults, from colleages to supervisors and from employees to boss.

As I have thought about my own identity in the changes of life I have become convinced that many of us are wrong about our identity.  Many of us view our identity based on what we do.  I am an athlete, an artist, a musician.  I am a handyman, an electrician, an accountant, etc.  What we do in our professions and in our lives dictates who we see ourselves and others as.  The problem with this though is that we struggle to really understand and grasp WHO WE ARE as WHAT WE DO changes.  As I learn more about God I am convinced that WHAT I DO is not my true identity.

You see when I was a child there was something that my dad would say when we were attending a serious event or we were going somewhere without him:

You are a DeWitt, act like a DeWitt.  Act in such a way that is worthy of the DeWitt name.

And luckily for my dad, my sisters and myself would act worthy of the DeWitt name.  We were mature and friendly.  We never caused a scene (that I can remember), we were always helpful and we genuinely enjoyed (most of the time) what life was all about.  We acted as we knew a DeWitt to act.  It was out of our identity as part of the DeWitt family that we behaved a certain way.  Can I share a secret with you… even if we had raised a holy terror, if we had acted NOT like a DeWitt we still would have been DeWitts.  Even if we screamed at every person we met, threw food in people’s faces and tore our clothing we would still have been DeWitts.  Our identity wasn’t dictated by our actions but instead our identity dictated how we would act.

You see regardless of our actions we BELONGED to a family.  Our IDENTITY was not in our ACTIONS but instead in our belonging… our being.  And the same is true in God.  When we accept the Gospel and allow Jesus to be Lord and Savior of our life we move into a new family.  And our new identity begins.  It isn’t that we always automatically act like we belong, but we do.  Our ultimate identity is based solely on being loved from God… and our actions flow from that point.

We are:

John 1:12              Ephesians 1:5              Genesis 1:27              1 Cor 12:27              Jon 3:16

1 Peter 2:9               Galatians 3:27-28               1 John 3:1-2                Romans 8:17

Children of God
Adopted/Chosen by God
No longer Slaves
Men and Woman of God
Heirs to His Promise
Loved of God

And everything else flows from there.


Where does your identity lie?  
Are you trying to act like you belong or are you acting out of belonging?






5 Years.

5 06 2017

Yesterday was my 5 year anniversary of living in New England.  5 years.  I just can’t believe it.  I am amazed that:  First, 5 years have somehow flown by so quickly AND that somehow it has only been 5 years that have passed.  Isn’t it weird how that happens.

I have found that as you grow older those two statements ring more and more true.  It feels as though time is racing by, and yet, it feels as though the adventures we experience and the people we come to know, we have always known and experienced.  Simply amazing!

There is a lot that God has done in me and there are more than I could list of things that I have learned over the past 5 years but for kicks and giggles let me list what seem to be the top 5 things I have learned…

5 things for 5 Years

5. That distance doesn’t hinder relationships it only changes the way we relate.  When I moved to California from Washington I was a young 19 year old who had never lived away from home.  I was desperate to relate the same way as I always had and so I called my family EVERY SINGLE day.  I wasn’t ready to let go of the day to day interactions.  I wasn’t sure what it meant to have a life outside of them, I thought that if things weren’t the same then somehow it meant my relationships would be gone.  Fast forward 3 1/2 years when I moved to New England.  I not only was moving away from my family but I was moving away from my friends to a land that was unknown.  What I now know is that GOING and SENDING others means that our love is increased.  We may SEE people and comunicate with them less but it doesn’t make it any less impactful.  When distance limits time and hinders communication it makes (or must make) what contact and time is spent together that much more intentional.

4. Different doesn’t mean bad or wrong, it just means different.
The culture and people in New England are different than both Washington and California.  When I moved to California it felt as though what people did differently was WRONG.  It felt wrong because if they weren’t wrong than it must mean that I WAS wrong.  This feeling was based on a misconception that there was one right way to speak, one right way to love, one right way to meet/be with people.

Over the past 5 years God has begun to show me the beauty that is found in ALL of His people and how intentional He was to create us all to see and love and meet people differently.  As God showed me the purpose He made me with to see differently I was able to see or at least imagine the purpose He had for the different found in others.  Truth is truth but sometimes that very truth can be expressed, seen and experienced differently. Different doesn’t mean bad or wrong, it just means different.

3. Joy is found on the otherside of fear.
I love that recently there have been many Christian worship songs that talk about how God conquers fear.  This is probably due to the fact that for much of my life fear ruled me.  I can see now that fear even ruled my relationship with God: I feared being found out by God or others as being the phony I felt inside.  I knew my sin and struggled to be “good enough” to deserve the gift God had given to me.  When I moved to New England God began to make my face my fear.  He challenged me to make decisions in my life not based on my fears (especially of failure) but instead based on His faithfulness and His love.  1 John 4:18 says “Perfect love cast out all fear…” and God challenged me to trust His perfect love in the face of my fears.  I took a trapeze class, I went skydiving, I allowed Him to shed light on my past and I opened my heart to the possibilities of love.  And through it all I found that joy is found on the otherside of fear; when I allow my trust of God to dictate my decisions I experience freedom.  My only explanation when asked what skydiving feels like is that it is pure joy, there was nothing else but peace and joy.  When we journey with God and choose Him over our fear, we find His perfect peace and joy.

2. My potential has more to do with God than it does me.
Now hear me out for a second… In high school and even in college you could have summed me up in one word: perfectionst.   I felt like I needed to be good enough to make an impact on the world.  I felt this call of God on myself to do something important, something big but I never felt as though I measured up to that call.  And to be honest, that is probably true but I’ve learned in the last 5 years that I don’t have to:

Be good enough
Be wise enough
Be creative enough
Do enough
etc.

I only need to trust God in me and His leading and He will make the rest happen.  My potential has more to do with God and His power in me than it does on what I can do myself.  When I trust in that, impossible things are possible.

And finally, 1. My identity is wrapped up in God’s love.
This has been huge for me. If you haven’t figured it out yet my identity for a very long time was wrapped up in what I could do and the impact that I had.  I saw powerful ministers of God and felt as though what they did impacted who they were.  But now I know the truth, who we are dictates what we do and our impact.  If we want to be the light and love of God to people than our identiy MUST BE found in being loved by God.  Only when we rest in, root ourselves in and identify with God’s love can we in any way give that same love to others.  His love overwhelms me.  A few days ago I wrote this in my journal,

“A different sort of security comes when we see our whole identity as being based in Your love of us.  If we are certain of nothing else we can be certain of being found in your love… Your love is fullness of peace and strength.  Your love will not fail to change, transform, challenge and empower.  Your love is who we are and THAT changes everything.”

When my identity is based in God’s love then I can trust that He will change me.  He will cover me.  He will empower me.  He will… His love never fails and His love drives out fear.  If I am found in His love, if being loved by Him is who I am then nothing can stop me from being His love to the World.

I am in awe of all God has done in the past 5 years.  He has changed me and marked me in incredible ways.  Here’s to many more adventures and years allowing Him to do what only He can do in AND through me.





Love Lashed.

15 04 2017

Written by K. DeWitt
April 13th, 2015

Love Lashed

I can’t help but think about Jesus,
Think about the Cross,
Think about what held him there.

“If you are the Messiah, come on down from that cross”
Voices mocked who days before had praised.

What are we to think of the man, our Savior, nailed to that cross?
Is He the Savior, the one come to defeat?
Was He the one to set us all free?

Was He a man or was He the Savior?
And what held Him there, upon that cross.

Fully a man and yet fully God
Nails weren’t what held Him bound to the cross that day.

Love lashed His will to that cross;
love that had withstood the ages,
Love that relentlessly made a way,
Love of a Father, a God and Creator.

Love held Him there.

Love lashed Him to the cross,
beyond human decision and temptation.
God’s true, eternal, pure love illuminated the darkness.
And love, love held Him there.

Love lashed Him there,
when no cords or nails could hold him.
No decree or declaration.
Fully human, yet fully God
He could easily have come off.

But love lashed Him there.  
Love bound Him to that cross.  
Love anchors His will to the will of the Father.

No love that can be known on earth down below.
No affections among humans
Could bind one upon earth as it is in heaven

This love that lashed Him is a love beyond
Love that called light from the darkness
Love that is pure and holy and true
Love without condition and that could never fail.

The only thing stronger than death,
Love lashes Him there.





A New Thing… Continued.

24 03 2017

Over a year ago I wrote a blog post titled A New Thing.  I talked about experiencing my first Christmas and birthday away from my family and how although it was a new experience that didn’t make it a bad experience.  I shared that God had been prompting me that I was moving into a season of taking hold of a “New Thing.”

This idea or theme had come from Isaiah 43:18 and 19,

“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.  See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?  I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland…”

Last year, as God continually spoke that to me, I was challenged to deal with former things.  God brought out deep areas of hurt and wounds within myself from the past.  God brought me to times of letting go of activities and functions I had previously participated in.  God asked me to take intentional steps to close out the former things.

As is always the case, my expectation for 2016 was that it would be filled with new things because that is what God has spoken.  The reality though was different.  The reality was that God was using 2016 to prepare my heart for the new things I would find in 2017 and beyond.

God was cultivating within me what would be necessary for these new things to take root and spring up.  God was cultivating within me what would be necessary for these new things to stay rooted when the wind and the rain appeared.  God was cultivating within me what was necessary for these new things to withstand times without rain.

God was cultivating me.

Now a few months into 2017 I wanted to share one of the new things that God had been preparing me for.  He had been softening the soil, getting rid of the weeds and working so that this new thing could take hold.

At the end of 2016 I began a new journey at my church as our NextGen Pastor.  This means that instead of just working with our youth team to love and inspire our youth students, I now work with a large group of leaders and volunteers to care for, inspire and love on our children and youth from birth into college.  A few months into this new thing and I can tell you that I am so thankful for God’s season of cultivating.  This new thing has taken more energy from me, has challenged me to think differently and has made me let go of so much.  This new thing couldn’t and won’t happen if I stay fixed on the former things.

Thankfully, God is still tending to the soil of my heart so that this new thing and the others to follow will continue to be fruitful. 

What I love about God doing a new thing in me, is that it is dependent on God and not myself.  I must only rely on and trust God, He will cultivate and tend to the new things.

There are more thoughts swirling around in my mind and more new things that God has started within me and that I believe in the year (or more) to come that we will see spring up!

My prayer this season is that I would continue to let go and not dwell on the former things that He has asked me to lay aside and that I would see and take hold of the new things, the new promises He is giving to me.

God, that my heart would continue to be cultivated for Your miracle life and promises to spring up and take root.  That I would let go of the former things, former fulfilled promises, former fruitfulness, that I could see the new things take root and emerge.  May I trust in your faithfulness and timing in all thing.


What about you?  Are there new things in your life that God wants to cultivate and bring forth?  Are you hindering these new things by dwelling on the past? 

Will you allow God to do a new thing in your life?  Will you trust Him in what that will take and what that will look like?





Champion.

19 12 2016
I’ve been thinking about this post for over a year.  It’s really a topic and a thought that I’ve had since high school.  Something that I’ve pondered on as I have watched individuals in my life champion me.  

A champion is normally thought of as the victor of something.  They have become victorious and because of this they often are seen as fighting or competing on behalf of other people.  In the Hunger Games you would see this idea as each district had individuals competing to be the Victor but it was an honor for their district if they won.  They were champions for their people.
But what this word, champion, can also be a verb.  And in verb form it means the act of defending or support.  In Kaitlin terms… to champion is to make someone or something victorious.  To champion is to raise someone up when they can’t on their own.
Throughout my life… I have had many champions.  My parents, my sisters, my friends.  Aunts and Uncles.  Cousins.  Pastors, mentors, coaches, teachers.  They have all championed me.

In high school… I had many champions.  My parents, my high school leadership teacher and my pastor.  These people didn’t see me just as the youth with emotional baggage, who didn’t see herself as worth something but instead they saw what God was up to in my life and that my heart to follow Him outweighed my brokenness (most of the time).  And so they championed me.  They raised me up, they encouraged me, they made room for me at the table.  They naturally pulled out who God was calling me to be.
In college… I had many champions.  I had district supervisors and staff (Shout out to Dave Veach in the Northwest District!!) who loved on me and gave me opportunities to do and see more.  They didn’t hold back but only because they knew I had more to give.  I had staff at LPC who gave me opportunities to step into leadership roles, to love on others and who created opportunities to help me make it in college.  They saw not only a college student but a minister of the gospel, in many different ways.
And most recently, in the years since I moved to New England… I have had many champions.
I had a district staff that made room for me at the table.  When I arrived as a district intern I was given a voice.  I was encouraged to speak up and speak out.  To lead.  When I didn’t feel old enough, wise enough… when I just didn’t feel enough.  They championed me until I knew I was enough.
I had pastors around the district, well respected and seasoned leaders, who loved me and encouraged me.  They made room for me to be Kaitlin but also made certain that I was a part of this place.  Leaders who let me love their people and lead their youth.  Leaders who again, made room at the table and championed me.
I currently have a job as a staff accountant with a team and a boss who champion me.  They respect my thoughts and give me opportunities to both learn and lead.  They champion me to minister beyond just my local church body or even my denomination family to impact the Kingdom in far wider places.

 
I am being championed.
And I have pastors today who are helping me to make room at the table for others.  they encourage me to think differently, to dream larger and to allow God to do more in me. Who have never once told me that I’m too much but who are helping me to be the ALL God created me to be.  They champion me to not limit God in me, to not stay rooted in the box of conformity, but to be open wide to the limit that is only God’s Word.
They champion me. 
The other day at staff meeting, one of our pastors mentioned that in many of the letters that Paul writes he addresses the letter as coming from both himself and Timothy.  Paul puts Timothy on the same level as himself.  He gives Timothy equity with just a few words. Paul champions Timothy.
In my own life, I have so many instances to champion people.  I have leaders who are capable who just don’t know it.  I have youth who are made for more, who can’t even see past high school.  I have college students just wanting to know that they belong.  I have friends in my community loving God as best they can.

And the question that I am faced with is this, will I champion them?  
Will I make room at the table, will I allow their voices to be heard?  
Will I make them victorious, no matter the cost to myself?
Will I champion now?




Resolved to Relate: Resolution Night

7 11 2016

For those of you who have read the past few posts that I’ve made you will know that in the last few months my youth group had been walking through a series on Relationships.  It’s been a while since I’ve posted as life has been a bit hectic but I wanted to conclude that series with you.  I think for those of you who have ready both the Identity series we walked through early in the summer and then the corresponding Relationship series it’s important to see where all of that was leading.

To be honest, there is so much more that should be and could be shared.  There is so much more of my own story that someday you all will hear.  There are so many other facets of God’s truth that illuminate and lead to these truths.  But to be honest, I’m not willing to wait any longer for those moments to pass before sharing what I believe God is asking us to resolve.

But I’m getting a little ahead of myself.  Let me first tell you what Resolution Night was all about.  For me resolution Night was birthed out of my own Resolve as a teenager to seek after God’s Way in relationships and my own covenant with my parents.

As I have struggled in my own walk to restrict my relationships to God’s Will and timing, one of the things I am the most thankful for is knowing I an not alone.  Knowing that my parents where there in my relationship successes and failures, that my friends would not stay silent but would believe more for me when I was ready to give up and for community beyond those two who continue to stand with me for God’s best.  And it was out of these relationships and the belief that there is something of a sealing that happens when we choose to stand for our resolves that our Resolution night was birthed.

Resolution Night was the culmination of our whole relationships series where youth were invited to make a public declaration of their resolve to do relationships God’s Way.  They weren’t forced and hopefully they didn’t feel coerced.  My goal was not numbers but instead heart.s  Even if only one person stood, I would have rejoiced because they were making a decision that would change their life.  If anything, I did everything I could to make certain they only made a stand if they were ready and willing to live under that resolve.

Students were encouraged to talk with their parents about making the resolve and ask them to stand with them on that night, to partner with them in their resolve.

The resolve was three part: Youth, Parent and Community.  And for me, the night had more of an impact because just as they were making that resolve, I too was resolving with them for the very same thing.


Youth Resolution

As an image bearer of God, I believe that I was made for relationship with both God and others.  I believe that relationships, although God’s design, are not the full purpose of our creation, but instead part of the greater plan.  In these relationships I believe that God’s heart is to cultivate and fulfill the desires of my heart.

As such, I resolve to pursue relationship with God before all others and to relate God’s way.  I resolve to trust and wait for God’s promised spouse and participate in relationships based solely on God’s love.

Specifically, I resolve to:

  1. Be intentional today for the promises of God tomorrow.
    1. Guard my eyes: I will abstain from and avoid any stimulating material of any type.
    2. Confess when I make a mistake and repent of sin.
    3. Seek accountability and walk with integrity.
    4. Allow God to heal and restore all areas of my heart.
  2. Love out of willful purpose not based out of feelings or desires today.
    1. Love in a way that gives others what they need not necessarily what they or myself want, even if this results in rejection.
    2. Pray for my future spouse and will not cultivate any emotional one-on-one relationships before the Lord’s time.
    3. Set boundaries in relationships for the intention of honoring and respecting both me and those I will relate with, today and in the future.
    4. Pray for others and treat them with kindness, respect and compassion.
  3. Explores and seek out who God created me to be.
    1. Accept responsibility for my own purpose.
    2. Accept responsibility to administer the Kingdom of God to the World as God calls for my life.
    3. Accept responsibility to not settle for anything less than a suitable partner for my purpose.
  4.  Reject Passivity.
    1. Be responsible for my own will.
    2. Seek out and stand for the things of God.
    3. Confront evil, pursue justice, and love mercy.
  5. Rely on God.
    1. For strength, wisdom and grace.
    2. To bring to pass all His promises in my life.
    3. To bring His purity from my heart into my thoughts and actions.
    4. Trust those He has placed in authority over me.

As a man of God, made in His image, God created me to honor and protect those made in His image.  As such, I resolve to:

  1. Lead courageously: I am led as directed by God and will not be led by the world or my own desires and fears.
  2. Boldly pursue: I will chase after and take responsibility for my suitable companion, God’s ordained woman.

As a woman of God, made in His image, God created me to honor and protect those made in His image.  As such, I resolve to:

  1. Guard and protect my beauty: I have been given a beauty and a power to influence and inspire those for God’s Kingdom.
  2. Refuse to settle: I am worth being fought and pursued.  I will not settle for anything less than God’s best.
  3. Take responsibility to care for and love God’s ordained man for me and the generations that will come out of our partnership.

Parent Resolution

As the parents entrusted with the responsibility of raising children made in the image of God, we resolve to help raise our children to relate God’s way; to trust and wait for their anointed spouse and participate in relationships based on God’s love.

As such, we resolve to do this by:

  1. Praying: In all matters pray for and into the children God has entrusted to us.  Calling forth through prayer, and the actions that follow, the image of God in our children.
  2. Being present: no matter what happens, we will be there mentally, physically emotionally and spiritually to support, encourage, guard and guide our children.
  3. Loving: regardless of mistakes, we will love with God’s love, not without consequence but full of grace.
  4. Teaching biblical truth:
    1. Through reading, explanation and godly example.
    2. To teach our sons that “they have what it takes,”
    3. And our daughters that they “are enough.”
  5. Creating, instructing and enforcing boundaries: with the express purpose of cultivating healthy and godly relationship.
  6. Fighting against the tactics of the enemy to diminish, destroy, and mar God’s intention and design in our children.

Community Resolution

As the church is not just a building where we gather to worship but instead a community of people “called out” of the world into the Kingdom of God.  As such we resolve to stand together to help this youth and family to relate God’s wait; to trust and wait for their anointed spouse and participate in relationships based on God’s love.

Specifically, we resolve to:

  1. Hold any confession or struggle of a friend in confidence (except when necessary to share with an adult).
  2. Share with an adult any struggle or sin of a friend that needs addressing.  I will first tell my friend before sharing with a leader, to convince them to go with me.  I refuse to yield to “unsanctified mercy” that allows sin to increase in my friend’s life.
  3. Follow through in the process of bringing our friends accountability to see complete healing and restoration.
  4. Help instill and enforce healthy boundaries and practical steps for emotional, physical and spiritual purity.

Our Resolution Night blew me away as 7 of our youth with their parents stood for God, their peers and community and resolved to relate God’s way.  What a powerful night!

Early I said “But I’m not willing to wait for those moments to pass before sharing what I believe God is asking us to resolve.”  And this is true,  I believe that there are those who will read this either in the near future or the years to come who will recognize that God is asking you to make this resolve.

It doesn’t matter your age or your history.  If you have made mistakes before and have not waiting on God’s best for you, it’s okay, you can start today.  If you have waited for so long that you have given up hope, don’t give up but instead trust in the God that loves you in a way that ultimately is fixated on you being made completely whole.

I would like to invite you to resolve to relate God’s way.  Look for parental figures (if not your own parents) to resolve with you.  Give them permission to guide and cover you as God intended.  And then seek out community to love you and hold you accountable.  I’m here.  The body of Christ is here.

Will you believe you were made for more?

Will you trust and wait on God’s best for you?