Faith, Living with Intention, Trusting God

Faith: When Everything Is Not Okay

Picture of a fence holding you back from a river flowing and trees on the opposite bank, reminder that we still live with boundaries on our lives


Our boys completed their school year from home, as did most American students.

Nine weeks of staying at home (except for buying a few groceries and taking morning walks).

Nine weeks of together time.

Nine weeks of trying to figure out what life should look like in this pandemic-defined world.

And there are still days when I wonder if we’ll ever move beyond the restrictions, the sometimes tedium, the testing of boundaries by our sons. There are days when I wonder if everything will ever be okay again.

Continue reading “Faith: When Everything Is Not Okay”
Living with Intention, Trusting God, Worry

Start: When We Face a Different Path

A meme with the word, Start in it


Last month, I participated in a twelve-day Instagram writer’s challenge. It was both challenging 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 wanted to share some of those posts with you all, and I’d love your thoughts on these words as they relate to your life as well.


A bridge on a tropical path, the other side of which leads to a darker part of the path

How often does this happen in real life? We think we’re walking on one path and something changes our course. We find ourselves on a rock-strewn trail that forces us to slow down and to approach each step with care. 

Or, sometimes, we must stop to navigate around a boulder, or figure out how to climb over it. We may want to walk one path, but God’s started us on a different route. 

What do we do with that?

We always have a choice . . . We can chafe with the change in direction. 

We can try to forge our own trail through the weeds.

Continue reading “Start: When We Face a Different Path”
Hope, Living with Intention, One Word, Trusting God, Uncategorized

2019: One Word

@JeanneTakenaka +Jeanne Takenaka

There’s something about a new year that enables me to breathe deep. 

2018 was a tough year for our family. We walked through some things with the boys that had me remembering that my Hope is truly found in Jesus alone. I found myself turning to Him in the stress and the chaos that the year threw at me.

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Faith, God, Living with Intention

Lent: An Out-Loud Faith

S Shock Shadow cross

+Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

I remember closing my eyes as a girl, and feeling the ashes scrape across my forehead. As I attended mass with classmates during my school day, we’d all be christened with a black cross of ashes on our foreheads. It made me stand out, at least in my own mind. That dark smudge set me apart, along with my parochial school classmates.

Continue reading “Lent: An Out-Loud Faith”

Five Minute Friday scribblings, Living with Intention

Weary: The Cure For Weary

Red leaves

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

Our Five Minute Friday prompt this week is—WEARY. This largely unedited “rough draft” form of writing stretches this perfectionist, in the best of ways. I write for five minutes on a given topic. If you’re interested in learning more about 5-Minute Fridays, check out our hostess, Kate Motaung’s site. 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!


I’ve been running on weary for years. In my late forties, my body is beginning to say, “Enough!”

I won’t go into details, but I’m having issues now that my doctor can’t give me a cure for. No pills will fix my problems.

No, it’s not cancer, just inconvenient tough-to-deal with/get-my-head around issues.

My doctor’s answer?


Sun Shimmers

In a busy culture, as a wife, a mom of two preteen boys, a friend, a writer, an involved person . . . life can make me downright weary with all its demands.


If I want to have a hope of getting things better for my body, I need to be intentional about incorporating rest into my daily life.

It’s HARD. I want to run at my crazy pace and accomplish lots each day.

But sometimes, we accomplish more when we give our bodies, our spirits, our minds a rest.

When we come away with Jesus for awhile.

When we choose stillness over productivity? That’s when refreshment comes.

Saying no to one more thing can be the most productive thing we do.

Talking with the Lord about this, I’m seeing that His edict for a Sabbath was pretty smart (imagine that).

He knew when He created us that our bodies required downtime.

When I don’t give myself downtime, or enough sleep, or mind-breaks during the day, I end up weary. And my body rebels with its symptoms.

Red Maple Leaf

If I want a truly productive life—living my days well rather than speedy—I need to be willing to yield my will to God’s plan. I must give my body, every part of who I am, time for rest.

When we rest in Jesus’ plan, weariness dissipates in the midst of renewed energy, creativity, and joy.

What about you? How are you doing at giving yourself rest? How do you combat complete weariness in your life?

I’m linking up with Kate Motaung’s Five Minute Friday. Read her post here—Weary

Faith, Life, Living with Intention, Love

Pain: A Heart Like Jesus

safe vs obedient quote copy

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

When I first read a headline about the Syrian refugee crisis, it was a blip on the radar of my attention.

Then, I read more.

I discovered the shocking reality of the numbers of people impacted by ISIS’ actions in the middle East. Millions fleeing their homes just so they can stay alive, so they can keep their children alive. They take dangerous risks in the hopes of living another day. And my heart broke.

Continue reading “Pain: A Heart Like Jesus”

Living with Intention, Mothering, Relationship, Uncategorized

Savor: Savoring Each Day

Spices 1

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

How do I walk out my days? Do I savor them? Or do I rush each moment, perhaps sprinkling a wee bit of salt on them, but coming to bedtime bland?

I have fallen into the trap that prompts me to believe busy-ness equals value. Busy-ness equals productivity. Busy-ness equals worth.

Continue reading “Savor: Savoring Each Day”

Dreams, Life, Living with Intention

Dreams: What Makes Dreams Come True?

Dreaming doing

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

For years, I dreamed of writing a book. But, fear kept me from trying. Fear that I couldn’t be creative enough to come up with good plots and characters, or good enough to actually interest readers, or . . .

Continue reading “Dreams: What Makes Dreams Come True?”

Five Minute Friday scribblings, Five Minute Friday: Tell, Living with Intention, Love

Tell: What Do My Actions Tell?

Mom Son hands

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

My Five Minute Friday prompt this week is—Tell. This largely unedited “rough draft” form of writing stretches this perfectionist, in the best of ways. I write for five minutes on a given topic. If you’re interested in learning more about 5-Minute Fridays, check out our new hostess, Kate Motaung’s site. 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!


Much fills my mind this week as I ponder our Five Minute Friday word: Tell. Thinking of the sudden death of Robin Williams, and all the conversations surrounding his passing.

What do I TELL others? I tell my kids the things they need to get done (wash the dishes, please, sort the laundry, homework before play…..)

I tell my husband about my day

I tell my friends my struggles.

I use my words to convey normal, every day messages.

But what about those words that I treasure in my heart? Those thoughts I have about others, about Jesus? Those truths that both break my heart (Iraq) and mend it (God’s love heals the wounds).

Wild flowers burgundy amid white

How do I tell my love to those who people my life? What do my actions tell my family?

I’m convicted when I think about how I allow the tyranny of the urgent to overpower my ability to show my love to my family.

To tell them my love without ever using a word. I need to guard my time, lest it be taken up with the urgent rather than the important.

I need to tell my family I love them through my words, yes. But also through my undivided attention. Through my willingness to set aside a task and listen—just listen—and be a seat for a boy who climbs onto my lap.

I tell others my love when I show my care for them.

Yes, there is a place for words—to tell friends what they mean to me. To put into words the admiration, the gratitude in my heart, the joy which they add to my days.

Words mean so much more when followed up with actions.

What do my actions tell others?

What about you? How do you tell others of your care for them? What actions speak love to you?

Kate Motaung Five Minute Friday: Tell

Comfort Zones: Do We Trust God In Our Comfort Zones?, Life, Living with Intention, Risk

Comfort Zones: Do We Trust God In Our Comfort Zones?


I don’t know about you, but I like comfort. I’ve always felt safe in the comfort of my routine, of knowing what to expect each day. There’s safety in the comfort zone because I don’t have to risk anything of myself. But . . . when I focus on—seek out—comfort, I cut off opportunities to know and be known by others.

When I flew to Destin, Florida recently, I did something different.

Continue reading “Comfort Zones: Do We Trust God In Our Comfort Zones?”