I was an incredible daydreamer as a child. I used to set up my desk lamp to shine on the wall like a big stage spotlight...and dressed in my mom’s fancy jewelry and my pink jelly shoes. Then it came… the powerful vocal styling of Whitney Houston blaring out of my cassette tape player. And there I was…in the middle of the spotlight. Singing to the top of my lunges, “How will I know if he really loves me...I say a prayer with every heart beat!’ I’d sing and dance away with my fake microphone made out of a hairbrush and foil. I didn’t care what I sounded like… I just liked the way I sounded with Whitney’s voice. My dreams would shatter when my mother would slam her broom on the ceiling from the kitchen below…”TURN THAT DOWN OR ELSE I’M CALLING YOUR FATHER!” One of my mom’s famous lines!

As embarrassing as it is now, I would make music videos in my room. Masterpieces! Oh yes, I would set up my dad’s VHS recorder and sit at my vanity desk. I’d turn on a sappy pop-love song, like New Kids on the Block or Debbie Gibson, and I would sing along as if I were singing about my long lost love. I think we all have those moments as kids. Pretending to be in love. I pray I'm not the only one!

I remember looking out my bedroom window up at the sky and asking if there was something else out there. Something more than what I knew to be in front of me. Asking questions like… ‘God, are you there? God, can we talk? God, who are you?…Do you have this great love that I’m daydreaming about?’

“How Will I Know” by Whitney Houston may seem a bit odd to relate to my relationship with the Lord. But the truth is – God embedded in me a desire for His deep love when I was a little girl. A love so deep that if it went away, I already knew it would break my heart.

I chose to walk away from the Lord when I was 16 years old. I got tired of waiting. I wanted a quick-fix love. Love at my fingertips. Love that I could dictate. Love on my terms with my rules. I went into protective mode. I chose to run away from the Lord and find another love that I thought was easier. All because I couldn’t wait on God’s plan for my life. I chose the world and all the ‘freedom’ it offered me.

But… through all the years of living out my own definition of love… I really only wanted one love. The love I was designed to desire. God’s love.

That night, as I was daydreaming out my window as a little girl - asking God if He was real, and if He had a deep love for me... was the moment He downloaded His heart into mine.

Psalm 42 says, 

As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God.
My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God?
My tears have been my food day and night, while people say to me all day long, “Where is your God?”
These things I remember as I pour out my soul…

Deep calls to deep
in the roar of your waterfalls;
all your waves and breakers
have swept over me.


“How will I know if He really loves me? I say a prayer with every heart beat.”

The depth of God called to the depth of me. And He called me back into His loving arms. 

Keri Cardinale