You Can Shatter the Habit of Comparison

You and I, too, can embrace the better habit of resting in God's love while delighting in the glorious comparability of all that he has made.

When is the last time you walked into a room full of women and just fully enjoyed everyone? The talkative and the more reticent? The natural leader and the sweetheart with the gift of helps? The carefully coiffed and manicured and the all-natural girl without a speck of makeup? My natural tendency is to compare,… Continue reading You Can Shatter the Habit of Comparison

The Myth of a Successful Prayer Life

Before asking myself whether prayer works, let me first define my terms. Is prayer a lever for moving the universe according to my whims, or is it a tool for molding my will to God’s?

Spring showed up bleak and gray this year, 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 and… Continue reading The Myth of a Successful Prayer Life

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

Sunday Scripture ~ Psalm 90:17

Celebrating the Labor and the Love in the Spiritual Discipline of Housekeeping

"Let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us, And establish the work of our hands for us; Yes, establish the work of our hands."  (Psalm 90:17) In his book Life Together, Dietrich Bonhoeffer reminded his readers that “without the burden and labor of the day, prayer is not prayer, and without prayer,… Continue reading Sunday Scripture ~ Psalm 90:17

The Gift of Language and the God Who Speaks

Language is a gift from God through which we sing and pray and, using the very same syntax and parts of speech, can also order a burger at the drive through or tell a story to a two-year-old.

The recent biographical movie featuring the life of J.R.R. Tolkien captures him saying, "After all, what's language for? It's not just the naming of things, is it? It's the life blood of a culture, a people." Language and the way we use it reveals our thinking and our character. The structure of a language reveals… Continue reading The Gift of Language and the God Who Speaks

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

Self-Care and the Rare Gift of Spiritual Friendship

A partner in prayer, another set of eyes, a companion in trouble:  these are the benefits of spiritual friendship.

“Hey, we have a lot in common! Maybe we should meet for coffee?” Coming from Facebook, a place where “friendship” usually remains distant and virtual, this was startling content. Add to that a full schedule and a hard bent toward introversion, and there was every reason for me to log off, click on “unfriend,” and… Continue reading Self-Care and the Rare Gift of Spiritual Friendship

A Post-Election Prayer

A Post-Election Prayer

By faith, we have gone behind the curtain. We have made our voices heard, according to the temperature of our hearts — Some with a raised fist; Some with a wavering hope. We have sifted the relative merits of deeply flawed and difficult candidates. We have heard the word “Never” said about winners and losers,… Continue reading A Post-Election Prayer

The Ancient Way of Praying Made New

Last summer, sitting on a rocky beach with family all around, I noticed a small white shell among the scramble of stones and shards of driftwood. Soon I had collected a handful, all pure white and perfectly whorled, the former dwelling place for some diminutive, absentee mollusk. For a few days, I carried them around… Continue reading The Ancient Way of Praying Made New

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