Say Yes to the Gift of Christmas

Joy is a gift that comes as we make room for it in our lives.

“You can say ‘no,’” he said softly, in a whisper, so our son would not hear.Immediately, my guard went up. It was Christmas time, so my planner was bulging its squares with lists of things to buy and to wrap and to bake.  What was my husband going to propose that required this ominous-sounding, front-loaded… Continue reading Say Yes to the Gift of Christmas

On What Do You Rest this Trust of Yours?

On what do you rest this trust of yours?

Sunday Scripture Not to resurrect an unpleasant topic, but one huge lesson I'm trusting for in these days following Election 2020 is that God's people do not need to be powerful culturally or in power politically to be obedient to him and to accomplish his purposes in the world. All we need to join the… Continue reading On What Do You Rest this Trust of Yours?

Certain Destruction and a Promise of Peace

"You will keep him in perfect peace, Whose mind is stayed on You, Because he trusts in You."

Isaiah may be one of the most cherry-picked books of the Old Testament, maybe even in the whole Bible! It's almost irresistible! We snatch favorite verses out of context, appropriating promises without a thought in our heads about the original audience or the author's intent. On our journey through Isaiah together, I am resisting the… Continue reading Certain Destruction and a Promise of Peace

The More You See: God’s Advent Surprise

The whole earth is full of His glory!

Scripture Sunday On this second Sunday of Advent, I'm already noticing my tendency to process life based solely on what I can see. If there are three pairs of shoes and a half bushel of dog fur on the dining room floor, I must be a terrible housekeeper. If no one in the house has… Continue reading The More You See: God’s Advent Surprise

In Praise of the God Who Has Done It All

I marvel at the way my daughters-in-love give to their families, particularly to my grandchildren. Both young women have the privilege of staying home with their littles, so they are up to their fetlocks every single day in feeding and clothing and cleaning up after the most adorable children on the planet (ahem). Naturally, being… Continue reading In Praise of the God Who Has Done It All

Why You Should Read Isaiah this Christmas

And the government shall be upon his shoulder... (Isaiah 9:6)

Sunday Scripture Some of my favorite Christmas memories are embedded in our family's practice of Advent, simple traditions of decorating, baking, crafting, listening, and singing, all in preparation for a heartfelt celebration of Jesus's birthday. The focal point was the daily reading around the dining room table, the carols always slightly off key, and the… Continue reading Why You Should Read Isaiah this Christmas

A Prayer for You on Thanksgiving Day

A Prayer for You on Thanksgiving Day

For those of us in the United States, this is a day of thanksgiving. However, gratitude is not circumscribed by geographic boundaries. Nor do we need a calendar’s permission to leave room for gratitude, so . . . LORD, we thank you!We confess that our hearts are often full of ourselves, for we mistake self-importance… Continue reading A Prayer for You on Thanksgiving Day

Gratitude is not Limited to the Month of November

Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving. Psalm 95:2

Sunday Scripture I have a bag for everything. Maybe you do as well? If I grab the right bag as I walk out the door, I'm in business. This morning, with "the church bag" in hand, I'm pondering this question: What do you bring with you when you come to God? Psalm 95 suggests thanksgiving… Continue reading Gratitude is not Limited to the Month of November

The November Book Talk: Where Reading Friends Give Thanks

All that hath life and breath come now with praises before Him.

I've added a hymnal to the pile of books I tote between laundry room and dining room table on the daily. Starting at page one, I've been working my way through the familiar and the unfamiliar and then recording a line that stands out to me in my journal. Playing hymnal roulette is not even… Continue reading The November Book Talk: Where Reading Friends Give Thanks

Invite Vigilant Gratitude to Wake Up Your Prayer Life

Sunday Scripture We're half way through November, and maybe, like me, you're wondering how this has happened. Somehow, even with all the things we're NOT doing because of the pandemic, life has managed to fill itself up with activity and distractions that keep us in full-steam-ahead mode most of the time. One of the first… Continue reading Invite Vigilant Gratitude to Wake Up Your Prayer Life