The three men in my life who speak the most of fatherhood are my dad, my father-in-law, and my husband. My father was raised by a single mom, and yet, he figured out this “dad-thing.” He learned how to help his three daughters know they were loved. He encouraged us to chase our dreams and to grow into the women God intended us to be, not the women he thought we should be. I’m sure this was tough, as we sometimes made choices that grated against what he thought was best for us!Continue reading “Father: When Fathers Love”
What message does the cross convey to you?
To me, it’s love. And hope.
How amazing is it that Jesus—a sinless man—loved humanity enough to endure the torture of beatings and being hung on the cross? And even more, He who had never experienced sin, accepted the burden of our sin because He loved us.
Most of us know the story of how He was beaten, tortured, and hung on the cross until He died. But has His sacrifice become too cliché in our hearts and minds?Continue reading “Easter: What’s the Message of the Cross?”
Many years ago, as Hubs and I stumbled through the valley of infertility, I struggled a lot with the Lord. I faced well-intentioned loved ones who told me I just needed more faith, and then we’d get pregnant.
But more, I questioned that God loved me as much as He loved other people.
If He loved me, why did He withhold this heart desire? Why did he not fulfill the innate yearning to carry a pregnancy to term and to nurture a child?
I still remember the day.Continue reading “Love: When We Question God’s Love”
In May, I participated in a twelve-day Instagram writer’s challenge. It was both stretching and fun. We were given a different word each day and created posts about those words relating to our writer’s life.
As I contemplated each word, I discovered correlations between writing life and real-life. I’ve expanded on the original posts, and I’d love to read your thoughts on these words as they relate to your life as well.
I don’t know when I fell in love with notes. As a girl, I wrote notes to my father, often accompanied with my attempts at drawing pictures. Every time I walked into his tiny office, my notes adorned his plywood walls. My words meant something to him. And his valuing my words meant the world to me.
Words have always mattered. As I grew into womanhood, I found great pleasure in writing letters to people. Penpals during my school years. Friends in other parts of the country as I began a new life at a college far from home. To friends in other states as I began my life as a military wife.Continue reading “Note: When Words Matter”
A couple of weeks ago, Mary Geisen shared some thoughts about legacy in relation to a post about creating I wrote. Her words have begun to ruminate in me. This offering is my initial attempt to really consider what it means to leave a legacy.
Have you ever thought about different aspects of legacy?
My father, whom I am beyond blessed to call Dad, was left a legacy of brokenness. His father was an alcoholic who abandoned his family when my father was three. His mother worked hard and traveled for nursing jobs to keep my father and his sister fed and clothed. But she loved him well and instilled in him a character that nurtured a loyal, hardworking man, even into his eighties. I wonder, though, if there are still scars that never completely healed because of his father’s choices.Continue reading “Legacy: What Makes a Legacy?”
Watching children grow up is both sweet and bittersweet. On the first day of junior high, as Edmund and I stood in line to check in, I watched former sixth grade girls—fellow classmates of my son—step into the line.
Many of them wore makeup, covering their natural beauty, their natural features. Brushing color onto their cheeks and nuancing their eyes to look more grown up, to appear more beautiful.
Our Five Minute Friday prompt this week is—NEIGHBOR. This largely unedited “rough draft” form of writing stretches this perfectionist, in the best of ways. We write for five minutes on a given word. If you’re interested in learning more about 5-Minute Fridays, check out the Five Minute Friday website. Or, click on the link at the bottom of this post. As you read my simpler Friday posts, I hope you’ll join in the conversation!
One of the downsides of living in a big city is that everyone is occupied in their own lives. We’ve all heard about the neighborhoods where people drive into their garages and close the doors. Setting up borders around themselves and their families.
I miss the small town feel of neighbors standing out by the mailbox and chatting for awhile. Getting the paper for each other when one neighbor is out of town. Of borrowing a cup of sugar.
When is the last time you asked your neighbor if you could borrow something because you were in a pinch for your evening meal?
Neighborhoods should be more than a place where a bunch of houses stand right next to each other.
Neighbors should be more than people who live adjacent to us.
Says the one who has—too many times—closed her garage door because she has too much to do to stop and talk.
What if we crossed each other’s borders every now and then?
What if we decided to be brave and talk with the person at the mailbox or the person out walking their dog?
What if we reached beyond our own border with kindness and with a desire to be Jesus-with-skin-on to those around us?
How many times have you been brave and reached out, and been surprised to find genuine connection with another?
It takes risking our comfort to love others as Jesus does. We must reach beyond ourselves and care for others more than for our own convenience.
Isn’t that what Jesus did? He got into peoples’ business and offered them hope.
The woman at the well received freedom the day Jesus reached out to his “neighbor.”
If we can set aside a few minutes in our schedule to at least open up the opportunity to say hello to a neighbor, I wonder what God could do? What He might reveal to those who people our lives and live close to our borders?
The only way we’ll know is to be brave and reach out.
What about you? What sort of neighborhood do you live in? What’s one way you have reached beyond your borders to those nearby?
Click to Tweet: It takes risking our comfort to love others as Jesus does.
I’m linking up with Five Minute Friday—Neighbor
I have five decades of life under my proverbial belt. And still, there are days when I let the mirror try to tell me truth as it sees it.
The bad hair days . . .
The days when my face bears pimples (yes, at fifty, I still get these) . . .
The ever-enlarging pores on my face . . .
The rounding middle, flabby thighs . . .
The thinning hair that sports more gray as the boys grow older and try new things . . .
“You are loved”
The man stood at the roundabout as we headed into the school, holding a sign with these three words.
One boy’s first comment was, “Oh no. What happened now? They always have those signs out after something bad’s happened.”
“A violent hope broke through and shook the ground . . .” (from “For the Cross,” by Bethel Music)
We sang a new-to-me song during our church service this past Sunday.
There was this one line that challenged me to re-think my version of hope.
I never thought about hope being violent.
This word has always struck me as a gentle thing, like a quiet rain falling or a pastel sunrise.