How to Thrive After Your Kids Leave Home

All of life is a gift and this season is no exception.

The number of plates on my dining room table had been a constant so dependable that I could set the table on auto-pilot. Often the number would swell to account for guests or shrink when one of us was visiting elsewhere. However, the ebb and flow always had a fixed point of return--until it didn't.… Continue reading How to Thrive After Your Kids Leave Home

Growing Up with the True Christmas Light

Live alongside me with awe and delight. I'll follow you to the True Christmas Light.

Read me the stories Of Jesus and Santa, Of stockings and shepherds and toys. Tell me the wonders Of snowflakes and wisemen, Of cookies and mystery and joy. Read "Night Before Christmas," Recite from Luke 2 and The wild words from prophets of old. Sing a Blue Christmas Then open your throat wide And shout… Continue reading Growing Up with the True Christmas Light

The Humility of the Given Self

“The best way to find out whether or not you really have a servant’s heart is to see what your reaction is when somebody treats you like one.”

I pushed the damp mop across the kitchen floor, knowing full well that I would be finding sticky spots on cupboard doors and drawer handles for days to come. The transformation of a bushel and a half of apples into smooth, pink applesauce is the work of a couple hours on my own. However, with… Continue reading The Humility of the Given Self

How Parenting Exposes Our Need for Faith

Do I believe Jesus can rescue my children? Do I trust him to work redemptively in their hearts? I want to.

Whether we’re making meals, changing diapers, or shuttling kids to baseball practice, parents are doers. Always in protective mode, we apply sunscreen and Band-Aids as needed, and when we hit a wall with a need we can’t meet ourselves, we consult with the experts. Long before parents could ransack Google or WebMD for medical advice,… Continue reading How Parenting Exposes Our Need for Faith

A Fruitful Life from a Heart of Love

We trust God to give our adult children eyes to see the truth about their own hearts’ affection.

Roots and wings are the gift Christian parents pass on to our children. We establish rules, give them responsibilities that build confidence and skill, and we water those deep roots with lots of love and prayer, knowing that strengthening wings will soon carry our children away from home, out of reach of our influence and… Continue reading A Fruitful Life from a Heart of Love

How to Be a “True Christian” Mother-in-Law

How to Be a "True Christian" Mother-in-Law

Over time, a family with four sons develops a unique tone, a guy-culture with a certain decibel level and a distinct way of doing life. As a mother of some now-married sons, it has been a joy to welcome other women into this circle, women who love my sons well and have also opened their… Continue reading How to Be a “True Christian” Mother-in-Law

9 Resources for Parenting Your School-Age Child

9 Resources for Parenting Your School Age Child

I have a complicated relationship with parenting books. As a new mother, I read all the books, analyzed all the angles, second-guessed all the decisions, and the only thing that saved my sanity is that Google had not yet been invented. That tightrope walk persisted for years until I learned to view the books with… Continue reading 9 Resources for Parenting Your School-Age Child

Praying the Words of Jesus for Your Teen

Pray the Word of Jesus for Your Teen--John 17: "Lord, they are yours."

For one short season of our parenting journey, my husband and I felt as if we were hanging onto the reins of a runaway horse. Daily battles over curfews and negotiations around boundary lines had taken the place of warm conversation and laughter around the table, and we mourned the loss as we searched for… Continue reading Praying the Words of Jesus for Your Teen

Parenting Rooted in Orthodoxy

Day to day parenting decision are deeply rooted in timeless truth. #Orthodoxy

"Hey, Mum, a bunch of the kids are going to Moody's for pie after rehearsal. Okay if I go?" One prerogative of motherhood is to meet every question with more questions: Who's going? Who's driving? Are you going anywhere afterward? Can you remember to let me know if your location changes? This has become a… Continue reading Parenting Rooted in Orthodoxy

The Beauty of Sacrifice and the Joy of Giving

When our children learn to live generously, they become world changers in a changing world.

It's the terminal milestone on the parenting journey: "I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth." III John 4 Even so, there are a good many ways of measuring its achievement. It's what we aim for and pray for, but how do we know that are children have made the leap from… Continue reading The Beauty of Sacrifice and the Joy of Giving