The Gathering: The Brawl of Believing

Friday, after one of the liveliest and fun speaking events I have done in my short career, I drove the 3 ½ hours from Dallas back to our ranch in silence.

I didn’t stop to powder my nose.

I didn’t stop for fuel.

I didn’t stop for coffee, cinnamon gum, or lunch.

I didn’t rap with the Beastie Boys or listen to Sheasby sermons.

I just drove.

I don’t remember crying, praying, or the traffic. I was on auto pilot.  When I drove over the railroad tracks a quarter mile from our front gate, I was astonished at how I had arrived so quickly.  I had no recollection of the journey now behind me.


In the midst of my confusion, I spied a blue-jay flying about three feet off the ground. In his tiny talons was a large field mouse. The mouse was struggling, and the bird was too.  One fighting for its life, the other fighting for its dinner.  The bird increased his wing momentum and cleared the barbwire fence and then shot straight up and slammed into the ground, stunning his prey.  I had to pull over. I had seen hawks and owls hunt mice, never a blue-jay? I stretched my neck to see into the corner acreage of our ranch.

The bird struggled to get airborne again, the mouse looked as though he’d succumbed to his fate. And then… I saw a hawk take off from the telephone pole in the far west corner of the field.  The hawk bolted toward the blue bird; in a bullet stream flash and a puff of dust the hawk knocked the smaller bird senselessly, pounced twice, and took to the air with the juicy rat.

A meal he had barely earned.

I watched the jay, it stumbled. He looked about as if to see if anyone was watching, and then took the flight of shame – off to find something more reasonable for dinner, perhaps a cricket or a centipede.


I googled blue-jays on my iPhone.  I had no idea they ate mice.

My lack of knowledge didn’t negate the fact, they actually do eat mice.

The scripture I had been reciting to myself all day flashed in my head.

Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Hebrews 11:1

And my faith was weary.

I wanted evidence.

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I wanted to be able to google the question, see the answer.

I wanted to know the struggle was worth it.

I was weighed down, like a blue-jay with eyes bigger than my stomach. I felt the blow of a huge hawk knocking me senseless and stealing my hope.


I pulled back onto the county road and made my way through the automatic gate just as a chubby blue-jay, and no I don’t know if it was the same one,  attacked an enormous green grasshopper on the dirt road. There was no struggle. He nabbed the crunchy bug and took flight.

I fancied it was the same embarrassed jay from the 34-acre field and hurried home.

My friend and mommy helper, Bobbi filled me in on all the happenings while I was away from the children.  The vandals, our two and four-year-old sons brought me pictures they had colored. Our 15-month-old foster daughter chattered gibberish as if we spoke the same language and I was following her detailed report.  I nodded and agreed with her.

Not unlike the drive home, the evening flew by, and I found myself wide awake thinking about that silly blue-jay.

Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Hebrews 11:1

I was the blue-jay.

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Things I hoped for were the juicy rat. Life was the hawk, knocking me down… stealing my hope. I was being robbed of things I want, need or care about – the hope for our future. Good things for the children, both ours and the ones we care for temporarily,  are often too heavy for me to manage.

I think I have it all worked out, in my mind or on paper; I say I have faith.  I say I believe. Sometimes I chant “I believe, I believe, I believe…”

The hope is if I say it enough,  I will actually believe.

Then the hawk comes, and I am knocked senseless, my hope gone. I am lying on freshly plowed soil, hungry, confused, and dusty.

Still, if only I would skip the struggle how much greater would my belief abound?  If I actually believe the work is not mine but was accomplished on the Cross, would I not be left stunned and vulnerable in an open field?



The substance of believing in that which I cannot see.

Knowing I am the daughter of a good Father, whose yoke is easy and burden is light, is the essence of that which is to be worked out with fear and trembling.  Yet instead of receiving this as my inheritance, beloved daughter whom He has promised every good thing needed for a life of peace and abundance – I have struggled to take flight.  Weighed down with the worry of work, work that is not mine.

If my salvation is bought by just believing, it occurs to me the fear and trembling part isn’t to work out how to get there, it is the struggle to receive the truth.

The brawl of believing.

It is done.

Too good to be true.

Too easy for my brain to comprehend.

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I clear the fence by my own work only to be form tackled on the other side.

I pictured myself just believing.  Letting go completely and resting on a leafy branch. No more struggle. No more worries.  Nothing can separate me from the love of the Father.  There is no worst case scenario, death is already conquered. What is there to be afraid of?

If the spoils of my wants are robbed, He still sits on the throne.  He still waits with a generous grin, fully prepared with an abundant blessing that He knows will be good and pleasing.


The perfect solution.

Seamless timing.

A genuine blessing.

I drifted to sleep having a real faith.

The God who knows and loves me, won’t give me grasshopper.

May your floors be sticky and your calling ordained. Love, Jami

Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? Matthew 6:26

You might also like: What if We REALLY Believed Jesus?

Have you heard? My sister and I started a PODCAST!  The Easy Wife: A Grace Message!  Click here to learn more!  

This is a super fun article about my husband and I in our local newspaper!  Check it out here!

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  1. Pat on November 20, 2016 at 8:12 am

    Wonderful article in today’s paper. I’m so proud of you, Jamie. On faith, I love Everett Ferguson’s definition of faith.
    With FAITH, we see the invisible, we believe the incredible and we achieve the impossible. We must visit!!!
    Love you. Pat Varner

    • jami_amerine on November 20, 2016 at 8:16 am

      Hello friend…. ❤️

  2. Glenna McKelvie on November 20, 2016 at 4:01 pm

    Faith…a life long study.

  3. Lori on November 21, 2016 at 10:35 pm

    Came to your blog by way of the foodie crush… Really enjoyed your post, on God’s blessing and keeping power. thank you.

    • jami_amerine on November 21, 2016 at 10:38 pm

      I am so glad! God bless you!

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