• Faith & Life,  unexpected blessings

    What I’m learning…

    As I reflect on interactions I’ve had in the past couple of days, I ask myself the question, “Is it better to speak up and share, even if I didn’t have all the facts, or is it better to not speak at all?” We live in an age where it’s hard to wait when something happens. We’ve created a culture where first one to speak gets the worm. But the risk is that you get something wrong, and you pay for it, sometimes quite harshly. When I posted a few days ago, I had thought long and hard about it. I had had a few important conversations with those around…

  • Faith & Life,  One Word,  unexpected blessings

    2018 Reflection: Transformation

    How have I been transformed in 2018? It’s been a journey, but one that I can now reflect back on as having purpose and meaning for my year. God’s Word transformed me as I listened to the whole Bible in a year. Many books, chapters and verses had an impact on me, but bigger than that was the consistency of being in the Bible everyday. God is faithful in His presence and what He reveals when we are reading the God-breathed Scripture. A series of tragic events caused me to realize that I needed to write on the important topic of mental health, and more so, our personal journey with…

  • Faith & Life,  unexpected blessings

    Lean On Me

    Last week I was on a wonderful vacation. Northern Michigan in the summer is the absolute best place to be. My phone switched between time zones because we were staying just feet from Lake Michigan. It had been a crazy couple of weeks prior to the trip with purchasing a home and moving in. Our progress was slow and the break was welcome. On Wednesday we left camp to explore the area and we were able to meet up with friends we had not seen in over a year. I briefly checked social media and put my phone down. On Friday I went berry picking with some friends. As we…

  • Faith & Life,  unexpected blessings

    Story of Origin

    I share a couple of caveats as I post this: I realize that this crisis at our border has been going on for quite some time. While recent events have heightened concerns, there are issues that need to be resolved. I didn’t just start caring about it because the media brought it to my attention. It’s challenging to keep everything on our radar and using our voices when it comes up is better than not using them at all.  I do my best to be educated and speak up at the right time. *************** Each of us has a story of origin. We have a birth story that our mom…

  • Faith & Life,  unexpected blessings

    When We Pray…

    Last week, I began earnestly praying for a situation that has caused me great anxiety over the last several months. Every time it came to the forefront of my mind, I had pushed it away. I didn’t want to deal with it. I wholeheartedly believe the Holy Spirit has interceded and lifted up my requests to God in the midst of stubbornness to address them. But I also know that me being able to speak the words is important to my dependence on God and healing. This song came on the radio on Sunday and I heard it differently than I had before. There is so much power in prayer, …

  • Faith & Life,  unexpected blessings

    “Death is all around us…”

    This past week, I have been thinking about death. Three unrelated deaths occurred in different spheres of my life. None of them were people I was very close with, one I hadn’t even met, but they still have had an impact on my perspective. As we enter Holy Week in the Christian church, we approach the death of our Savior. It’s a week that begins and ends with celebrations, but in between there are moments of great sorrow. We can look at our lives in a similar way. Our birth and time on earth is a celebration, and our heavenly homecoming is something to rejoice. But the hardships and challenges…

  • Faith & Life,  One Word,  unexpected blessings

    2017 Year in Review: Reaching the Depth of My Soul

    In this final post about 2017, I refer to several previous posts that do a better job of describing this aspect of our year. The first 2/3’s of the year were a blur in many ways. My spouse spiraled down into a depressive state and I did everything I could to maintain what needed to be taken care of while also doing my best to emotionally support him. He did an amazing job of being supportive of me in my own struggles as well. We really worked as a team, even when circumstances were tough. I am so thankful each of us have had counselors that could be our sounding…

  • Faith & Life,  One Word,  unexpected blessings

    2017 Year in Review: A Huge Learning Curve

    I am very thankful for high school US history and government classes for giving me a basic understanding of our democratic system here in our country. But this last year has been a huge learning curve for me in regards to what happens every day in each of our three branches of government and how it impacts so many lives. I will admit that since I became a voting member of society, I had chosen to be ignorant. I didn’t like watching the news. The brokenness of our political system was too much to bear. It was easier to remain ignorant. …Until I realized how human lives are affected. No longer…

  • Faith & Life,  One Word,  unexpected blessings

    2017 Year in Review: New Adventures

    2017 brought some new adventures, with travel to some new places, visits with family and friends and meeting new people! We had family visit from Michigan and got to experience a few of our favorite places (and some new ones) through the eyes of our 4 year old nieces! Jack and I celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary with a short trip to Rehoboth Beach. We had heard rave reviews about the beaches in Delaware and we loved it! 8 days after surgery (Dr. orders were a week on the couch), I got on a plane and headed to Salt Lake City for a Jamberry conference! I have been a consultant…

  • Faith & Life,  One Word,  unexpected blessings

    2017 Year in Review: Physical Endurance

    I am planning to send a few Christmas cards this year, but they won’t include a review of 2017 from the Phoenix family. So instead, I thought I would write a few blog posts (and include pictures) to review the year. I came across a note I wrote to myself for individual priorities for this year and thought that I would reflect on some of those across a few posts. I have been blessed with great health in my mere 30ish years of life, but the last couple had been a bit of a struggle, with no real answers on what exactly what was going on. It was rather frustrating…