Happiness has always been mine in some measure even in a difficult marriage. It’s a certain sense of contentment, a hopefulness that even when life falls apart, things don’t go my way, there is something to find joy and gratefulness in. For example, travel back with me to the time I was sitting at a Casting Crowns concert about 10 years ago in Dallas. I was there with my husband. Mark Hall shared his testimony about the wonderful blessings it was for him to sponsor a Compassion child. Tears rolling off my face, I looked over to my husband hoping to see the same tug on his heart. I begged him to let us take a child’s profile home…. Continue reading “Happiness Was Always Mine”
“When you are free, don’t ever go back to Egypt.” These are the words my Focus on the Family counselor said nearly 2 years ago. Counselors can’t exactly tell you to leave your emotionally and spiritually abusive husband pastor of 16 years, especially while they are sitting right next to you. Getting me alone she held my hand, looked me straight in the eye and affirmed, “You are very brave to do this.” Chills down my body, I knew what she meant. It was a death to so many dreams. Knowing he would have to resign, we’d have the dreaded legacy of the “D” word to leave our kids. But it also meant death to the nightmare the children and I had been living in as well. Continue reading “Freedom From Oppression”
“Mark my words. This time I’m NOT sending him another text until he responds to my last fifteen! I mean, he totally ghosted me! Ugh. I thought our relationship was really going somewhere .. then poof silence for days. I tell myself, his phone must be dead or broken. He couldn’t be intentionally ignoring me! Wait…Could he be? Unbelievable. There’s the “Active in Messenger” green circle of TRUTH. #Fact he is definitely ignoring me!”
LOL. Okay, I know it’s a little dramatic but I’m going somewhere with this! Continue reading “God Gets Ghosted Too”
Ever find yourself singing next to someone in church that completely throws you off key? Or how about that ONE lady who sings so loud, effectively drowning out everyone else? Despite, desperately trying to block them out, even secretly covering the offended ear, you realize it’s IMPOSSIBLE to hear yourself!? What happens if it’s a spouse that has great potential to throw your spiritual walk completely off course or maybe even threatening to drown you out, not by their singing of course, but by the way they act, live, or even believe? This doesn’t only apply to marriage, but with anyone you live in close proximity to…your parent, child, even fellow brother or sister in Christ. Yet the Bible calls us to live in “harmony” with all people -with an important caveat: as much as it depends on us... Continue reading “Marriage: Harmony Without Hierarchy”
It’s proven that the earlier we introduce children to the alphabet we prepare them for success in school. I believe the Bible speaks of another “letter” we’d best prepare our children with a proper understanding of…. It’s a Letter with the capability to embitter and kill the spirit of any child or adult for that matter, that demands perfection, and accepts no excuses. What letter is this? The Law. .. Continue reading “The Letter That Kills Our Children”
I don’t know about you, but there isn’t any amount of convincing that will change what I heard! I’m referencing the current debate on whether you hear Yanny or Laurel. How can two people listening to the same recording hear two different things? On that same note, how can two people read the same scripture and end up in two different theological camps? Who’s right? Is it possible both are? What about authorial intent? Continue reading “Laurel or Yanny- Who’s Right Theologically?”
Children naturally piggyback off of our faith for quite some time. Knowing all to well that God has no grandchildren we gently nudge them toward autonomy over the years. Encouraging them to own their own thoughts, values and beliefs as we set them on a journey to find out who they are and who God really is. Our heart’s desire echoing…
“I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.” (3 John 1:4)
Sadly we realize, some will not be found walking in the truth. Perhaps not for a season or not at all. What’s helpful to remember is, as perfect of an example as Jesus was to His twelve disciples- one still rebelled. One with wild Tarzan-like faith…..
If only there was a parable about the heroin addict. We all know someone, love someone, or may be that someone….who struggles with addiction. One in ten Americans are addicted to some form of substance abuse. That should cause us to take a sober look around us. What do we do? Do we wag pointed fingers and shun them, ignore the problem maybe it will go way, or give the poor guys a break and hand them a few bucks out our car window?
As cliche as it is sounds, we must ask …. What Would Jesus Do? Continue reading “WWJD About Addiction?”
Didn’t Jesus promise us that His yoke would be easy, and the burden would be light? We read the Bible, go to Church, Pray….. So, why isn’t it easy? Instead, life is a constant up hill struggle. The burdens are so deep, so heavy, so unbearable at times we feel like we could just break under the pressure….. Continue reading “When Jesus’ Yoke Does NOT Feel Light”
The fact is, we live in a world of broken families, and marriages. I wonder if in a desperate attempt to counteract this degradation, we’ve inadvertently turned them into idols. Have we swung the pendulum in the opposite direction? While a balanced perspective is needed, obsessively prioritizing the physical “family first” concept isn’t actually entirely biblical….. Continue reading “Refocus On The Family (of Faith)”
The next time you drive by a wheat field waving in the wind, tall and glorious, know your admiring a grave yard. Yes, that’s right. It’s nothing more than just a cemetery of seeds. Vegans, I do hope you’ll forgive me for being so graphic but the soil is a merciless butcher! That slits open the thin seed coat allowing them to germinate, sprout and grow into the crop it is. Yielding abundant life, sustaining food, and nourishment for the world….That seed had to give up its life. Die, to give us the ability to live. That’s the not so pretty sacrificial process of dying to self….. Continue reading “Dying to Self Is Never “Pretty””
18 years ago, I received the life-giving gift of a new heart.
My biological father had died of a heart attack at the young age of 56 and little did I know my mother would pass away just 15 years later, from heart failure. Seems genetically, I was predestined to inherit a “bad heart”.
For many years I didn’t know how bad mine really was. But as each year passed, my decline marked evidence I would have to undergo the daunting procedure that required…. Continue reading “A Heart Condition Threatening All Of Us”
Everything in my house is broken. People, I mean it when I say this. Just about everything is broken to some degree! What’s ironic is that someone once commented that my house was so nicely decorated, they described it, “like a museum”. Yep, a museum alright….. a museum of unspoken broken maybe…. Continue reading “The Unspoken Broken Rooms of Our Soul”
Why is it that some days, hope is harder to find than others?
In the warm sunny days of southern Maine my favorite hobby is to go looking for sea glass, or some call it beach glass. This is glass that has been basically thrown away, or discarded in the ocean, broken to pieces then washed up smooth and beautiful. Redeemed….. Continue reading “Some Days, Hope is Harder to Find Than Others”
Paul tells us there is a profound mystery regarding the headship of Christ and the Church and how it relates to husbands and wives. I believe Biblical headship requires the husband to be willing to model his life after Jesus’ death…
If reading the Bible feels a lot like a dreaded detox diet. You don’t desire it, but you know it’s healthy for you, so you force yourself to do it once in a while….
That’s a good indication something is wrong. Very, Very Wrong!
The problem isn’t necessarily that your not reading the Bible -it’s far deeper than that. It’s that fact that you don’t desire it.
In our Christian walk we go through periods of spiritual-starvation. Spiritual anorexia would be a better word for it. The word anorexia literally means, “No desire.” We can become so full of ourselves and the world -we lose the desire.
Here’s what spiritual anorexia looks like…. Continue reading “Help! I’ve Lost the Desire for God’s Word”
“Modern Day Tulip Mania.”
That’s what I call it when we choose to obsess on the outward, attractive, temporal things in life over the eternal Word, leaving us spiritually bankrupt …
Tulip mania was an actual historical event in Holland during the 17th century. The tulip, (of all things) was a huge status symbol, especially among the rich and famous. Rare bulbs could sell for the price of a house! Lower class even mortgaged their homes to buy tulip gardens! Rumors have it, banks dedicated special vaults to hold valuable bulbs! Continue reading “Tulip Mania – Investment Warning From Nana”
Lately, with the #Me Too movement women have been speaking out against sexual abuse. Any kind of abuse weather it be physical, verbal, and emotional isn’t being tolerated like it used to but what about spiritual abuse? Is everything considered “abuse” nowadays?
Spiritual abuse is psychological in nature much like emotional abuse however it uses the guise of religion to control and manipulate women with the fear they will be sinning against God if they do not obey. So, no – not everything is abuse but yes, spiritual abuse is abuse.
Asking someone, “what is your idol” doesn’t work. Sometimes you have to do a little fishing. You might be surprised at what you pull up – But Jesus isn’t.
Instead, to identify an idol ask, “what is your WORST nightmare.”
What does your heart fear losing the most or gives you the most anxiety if it were gone tomorrow?
My friend, that is your idol.
An idol is something or someone other than God than you believe has the power to save you from all the “UNs” of life. Just like, “There’s an app for that,” Sure enough, you’ll find there’s an idol for that …
I wrote this poem with the ache of empty arms after losing a wanted and tried-for baby. The pain of miscarriage is a very personal and deep feeling of loss. From the moment you find out your pregnant, you begin to love the child. You begin to daydream about their future, what they will look like, what their personality will be like… as if they were already here. Really, they are here. There’s just multiple layers of skin between them and the world. That’s what makes any loss, at any time so hard.
My womb no longer felt fruitful and nurturing. It felt like a grave site and I was the walking tombstone. I cried everyday, for weeks, for months…I cry now as I write this 6 year later.
To Imitate someone is to model or pattern your life so it mirrors theirs. Some feel it is the highest form of flattery. To impersonate someone actually requires you pretend to be that person. That isn’t always so flattering especially if SNL gets a hold of your character!
Have you ever considered impersonating Christ could do more harm than good – even as a Christian?
The difference between Spiritual Fruit and Tinsel is fruit actually feeds people, nourishes their souls from the nourishment they’ve received from the Vine.
“Just as the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it remains in the vine, so neither can you unless you remain in me….” John 15:4 Continue reading “Spiritual Fruit or Tinsel? Take the TEST”