Redeeming Suffering Through Action

Redeeming Suffering Through Action

Things I find unacceptable about the last 15 months of my life:

  • My mom was killed instantly in a car accident- the day before my 36th birthday.

  • Thirty days later, my best friend moved 15 hours away.

  • The following several months held sickness, anxiety, and yet another autoimmune diagnosis for myself.

I lost my mom.

I felt like I lost my best friend.

I rapidly began to lose my health.

You want to talk about some raw, lonely, abandoned feelings?

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Be Interruptable: The Tension Between Mary and Martha

Be Interruptable: The Tension Between Mary and Martha

The mist from the prior evening's rain was frozen solid in the shade at the Toledo Art Museum in December. As my best friend and I skated every-so-gracefully out of the shadows of the parking garage into the sunshine, we'd just wound up an intriguing chat about those famous sisters- Mary and Martha (Luke 10:38-42). Scripture + My Best Friend + Art. This may have been my best day ever.  

As a self-proclaimed Martha, I've revisited this section of scripture again and again. One question has always haunted me, and I chatted about it that day with my self-proclaimed "Mary" friend: Wasn't there stuff that needed to get done? I know Martha was fussing at Mary which obviously isn't very Christ-like (and Christ called her on it), but wasn't Martha (and all her busyness) kind of necessary? Those disciples wanted to eat... right?  (Assuming Jesus wasn’t going to pull a water-to-wine + fishes-loves miracle last minute.)

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The Kind of Mom I Want to Be (18 Gifts for My Children)

The Kind of Mom I Want to Be (18 Gifts for My Children)

Have you ever spent much time considering the legacy that you're leaving your children (and their children and their children)? If you have younger children, you probably haven't. It wasn't something that was "front of mind"  for me until I lost my own Mom very suddenly. In the year that has followed, I've spent much time reflecting upon who my mom was, what she taught me, and most powerfully: the legacy that she left us of hard work, perseverance, humility, humor, and a sacred regard for life. 

As I've reflected upon every good gift that my Mom gave my sister and I, it has cemented the value of the "now" in my mind.

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Mama, Your Body Matters

Mama, Your Body Matters

Babies. Time. Gravity. Busyness. Injuries. Disease. There are so many ways and events that can fester a special kind of dissatisfaction with our bodies. As mamas, we know the power and strength that is inside of us- that created, nourished, and cultivated life, then pushed it out into the world. We know the purpose behind these bodies, but more often than not, as the battle scars of life begin to tatter our flesh, we can question our very worth and purpose.

We battle our stretch marks. We battle the extra pounds. We battle the cellulite, the sagging jaw line, and the embedded lines that show we’ve expressed joy daily. The world tells us that these signs of life are undesirable and less than beautiful. The message to these generations is that as we grow in wisdom, virtue, experience, and strength, we are now less than we once were because we wear the battle scars of a life filled with living.

Despite what the magazines on the rack say, the Book I look to says differently. The Book I look to says that my body is sacred, chosen, strengthened, and redeemed. The only Word that matters says that I house the Spirit of the living God inside these dimpled thighs and amongst all those wayward hairs.

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5 Things to Know When Your Husband is an Unbeliever

5 Things to Know When Your Husband is an Unbeliever

We all have unbelief- sometimes in ourselves, in our spouse, in a child... All to varying degrees. We aren't born believers, unfortunately. God must pursue our hearts until we willingly submit to him and lay our lives at the foot of the cross. 

When the root of unbelief is in our own hearts, we need only cry out to God in earnest desire to fully believe. As the father of the sick child in Mark 9:24 cries out to Jesus, "Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief!" so too can we cry out, and he will surely answer. 

The more challenging aspect can be when we live with a loved one who is shrouded in unbelief. We don't have control over that situation at all. We desperately WANT to. We see with clear, unveiled eyes every single lie that our husband or child believes, the Biblical wisdom they lack that could bring them so much freedom, and the burden that their own unbelief places on them. 

My personal experience is with an unbelieving husband, so that's where I'm speaking to specifically. My childhood sweetheart and I married 16 years ago as unbelievers.

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How I'm Breaking FREE From Anxiety + Fear

How I'm Breaking FREE From Anxiety + Fear

You don't have to see to the unforeseen when you serves a God that sees it all.

I am not a "paralyzed worrier", I am a "prepared worrier."

I've spent a lot of time planning.

  • Fire plans

  • Husband dying plans

  • Child dying plans

  • Burglar plans

  • Job loss plans

  • Anyone I care about dying plans

Really, for almost every conceivable scenario, even those that are so incredibly remote and unlikely that they are rated at less than 0.01% chance of occurring, I have developed a plan.

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"Women of the Word" Review + Cheat Sheet

"Women of the Word" Review + Cheat Sheet

Have you ever read Women of the Word by Jen Wilkin? New believer or mature Christians alike have the opportunity to understand God's written word in new and profound ways. In this book, Jen discusses several Bible study "errors" or traps, and I fit squarely into each one. 

Adopting her Bible study methods have deepened my faith and broadened my understanding in significant ways. While the book is a short read, it's not necessarily a quick read as it's incredibly rich in content.

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I love Jesus, but I cuss a little...

I love Jesus, but I cuss a little...

... you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness.... (Romans 6:16-17; partial)


I have become obedient, from the heart, to the calling before me- the righteous standard of a perfect and holy God. Or have I? I was listening to In His Image by Jen Wilkin last night, and she gave a metaphor that crushed my toes. She said, "When we are faithful to God in smaller temptations, we build strength to face the bigger ones. No one indulges an explosive fit of anger, who has not first indulged a thousand smaller aggressions. If we habitually flee from the temptation to commit minor sins of anger and selfishness, we are less likely to fall for temptation in greater sins of anger and selfishness."

Essentially, she likens our propensity to go all in with our sins to weightlifting. We are incapable of lifting those huge sins if we haven't been training with the smaller ones all along.

Ouch.

This immediately convicted me in the areas of anger and profanity in my own life.

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The Purpose in Your Broken _____ (marriage, finances, heart)

The Purpose in Your Broken  _____ (marriage, finances, heart)

We all have it. We have all been broken- in so many different ways.

Sometimes our bodies are broken by disease, deficiencies, accidents, or abuse. Sometimes our hearts are broken by loss, betrayal, loneliness, or shame. Sometimes our minds are broken by anxiety, depression, or obsessive thoughts.

Whether your marriage is broken, your relationship with your child is broken, or your finances are broken- that brokenness can have a purpose. It HAS a purpose.

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You ARE a Good Mom

You ARE a Good Mom

You're a good mom. And I should know- I'm a good mom too, so I'm qualified to judge. 

Here's how I know that we are both good moms: 

I've also felt shame, self-hatred, condemnation, overwhelming guilt, and humiliation over every single one of those things. If you can fail in some way as a parent- I've done it. 

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