Advent Series Part One: Wonderful Counselor (Isaiah 9:6) The Christmas story overflows with certainty. Both Mary and Joseph received specific guidance in supernatural dreams. The shepherds were told precisely where to look for Jesus, and the wise men from the East followed a star that led them across the miles and directly to the toddler… Continue reading Where Do You Go When You Need Wisdom? Who Will Be Your Counselor?
Welcome to the season of ceaseless striving! Of course, Thanksgiving and Christmas are never billed that way, and I truly hope that it's NOT your experience! However, if you're paying close attention to all the flickering candles and peaceful white twinkly lights on your Instagram feed, it's entirely possible that you're getting a different version… Continue reading A Peaceful and Joyful Holiday Season Begins with a Request for Rest
I stood today on the front deck, camera pointed upward, waiting for the wind to blow. The rain of colored leaves was more dramatic in person than in the video I was trying to make, but I know this particular beauty signals the beginning of the end: the end of a season of brightness and… Continue reading Your On-Ramp to Comfort and Joy for Seasons of Suffering
The spring of 2019 showed up bleak and gray, but we barely noticed. The weight of waiting occupied every minute, with question marks bristling where daffodils had been delayed. An army of friends prayed for our family when we could not, waging war on our behalf, inquiring with kindness about obstacles that made no sense… Continue reading Do You Think There Is Such a Thing as a Successful Prayer Life?
Are you ready? The holiday chain reaction has already begun with Christmas cards and huge inflatable Santas crowding out the pumpkins and the ghoulish costumes long before the back-to-school clearance bins have been packed away. A posture of resistance to the retail rush requires a better strategy, one with "expulsive power" to counteract the pressure… Continue reading The Expulsive Power of a Better Strategy for the Holiday Chain Reaction
How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives. What we do with this hour and that one is what we are doing.” Annie Dillard, The Writing Life When I first read this quote from Annie Dillard, I was up to my fetlocks in raising four sons. What I was doing… Continue reading Jump-Start Your Daily Routines and Establish Good Habits for a Lifetime
Switching the microphone over to my left hand, I hooked my right thumb into my skirt pocket to still the trembling. My always-forgiving church family might have attributed the tremor to nerves--and it's even more likely they didn't notice it at all. But I noticed it, and while I find this symptom of Parkinson's disease… Continue reading Celebrate Grace and Gratitude on the Coat Tails of Mourning
By the time I was 21, I had been thoroughly inoculated against any threat of marriage by the wistful comments of my married friends: “Oh, you can do that now, but just wait till you get married and have kids…” They painted an image of a small, constricted world with no scented candles (dangerous open… Continue reading 3 Mothering Insights I Learned on the Job, but Wish I Had Known from the Start
My grandchildren are learning to sing hymns, and I love it! There's not much cuter than hearing a two-year-old's rendering of timeless theological truth. And whether or not he understands it today, the words are in his brain just as all those crazy advertising jingles from the seventies will forever be stuck in my own… Continue reading Rest: Growing in Our Understanding of the Words We Think We Know
I can still remember where I was sitting on the Sunday morning when I realized that I could do everything I knew to pass the baton of faith to my children, and they might not choose to follow Christ. I could bring them to church, have consistent family devotions, teach them to read their own… Continue reading Family Discipleship: Whose Job Is It and Why Is It Important?