So what is Love? Serve. Shine, you ask?
Love. Serve. Shine., or LSS for short, is my mission statement. It is how I want to live my life and what I want to represent. Here’s how it came to be.
Growing up, I dreamed of being on the radio. My parents tell me that when I was five or six, my dad gave me a tape recorder and I would make radio shows. I would sing a song, say who I was, do a commercial, promote the next song, sing it, and on and on it would go.
I graduated from the University of Kansas in 1996 with a Bachelor’s of Science in broadcast journalism and moved to the Dallas/Fort Worth area in 1998 to begin my career.
In 2009, from the outside looking in, I had it all. In fact, I had crossed every single item off my bucket list. I should probably tell you that it was a very small bucket list, which included a morning show job at a country music radio station (check), getting married and moving to the suburbs (check), two children (check), and singing on the praise and worship team at my church. I had been in radio since ’98 and was currently enjoying my ninth year as a co-host on the Dorsey Gang on 96.3 KSCS along with Terry Dorsey and Hawkeye. My husband and I lived with our two children (Caitlyn and Nick) in Flower Mound, Texas and I sang every Sunday morning with our church’s praise band.
On the outside, everything looked great. Our morning show was enjoying a top five spot in the ratings, and the Academy of Country Music had just named us “Best Morning Show of the Year.” KSCS flew our spouses and us out to Las Vegas for the ACM awards show where we got to walk the red carpet and sit by the stars. My marriage was solid, my children were healthy, and everything should’ve been perfect.
It wasn’t perfect. I was lonely, miserable, and depressed. I was drinking to numb the pain and struggling with an eating disorder that had plagued me since my early teens. I was slowly unraveling, and nobody knew.
Sometimes, to draw you to Himself, God will strip you of everything so you can see that He is all you need. I have been there.
Sometimes He will give you what you think you want to show you how incapable it is of satisfying you.
All of my dreams had come true, and I had never been more anxious or depressed. Radio, marriage, children, and music had failed to deliver the deliverance they’d promised.
One day, I opened my journal and began to pray.
Lord, I don’t know what is wrong with me, but I know I’m not living the life you desire for me. What do I need to lay down?What do you want me to do?
He gave me three words, and I’ll bet you can guess what they are.
Love. Serve. Shine.
If you are anything like me, you know what it’s like to wonder and worry and agonize over the future. I want to see the schedule and familiarize myself with the agenda, but God doesn’t work that way. Psalm 119:105 reminds us that His Word provides a lamp to our feet and a light to our path. In other words, He will show us where to put our foot if we will lift it in faith and walk. He gives us direction for the next step but seldom lets us peek much further down the path.
That day God did not reveal a new and exciting adventure or unveil His grand plan. He told me He wanted me to love others with the love of Christ, to serve others sacrificially and without expecting anything in return, and to live in such a manner that my life would reflect the glory of God—love, serve, and shine. Not long after that He delivered me from alcoholism and restored my relationship with His Son. Food no longer had a hold on me. I ultimately left country radio, found myself on Christian radio, and am currently working toward my master’s degree in theology at Dallas Theological Seminary. God has opened doors for me to teach the Bible and share my story all over North Texas and beyond, speaking at conferences and retreats. All glory to Him!
God’s marching orders over my life have not changed, though my circumstances are always changing. The command to love, serve, and shine transcends who we are and what we do; it is His will for my life, and for your life, too.
“Love. Serve. Shine started as a journal entry back in 2009, and I have written those words at the start of every entry since then to keep them at the forefront of my mind. Now it’s a ministry and a website where we talk and wrestle and mine the depths of God’s Word. We will disagree on some things, and I hope that when we do, we will honor each other as image bearers and listen carefully to what the other has to say. I don’t have it all figured out, nor do I have all the answers. I would, however, love to do life with you and learn from you as we grow in our likeness of Christ. May we love, serve, and shine in everything we do.
“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.
“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”