• Inspired,  unexpected blessings

    66in52 Bible Challenge: Halfway through the Bible

    The 66in52 Bible challenge that I began in January has been a welcome and needed opportunity for my devotional life. I look forward to my drive time to listen to each reading. And while I haven’t always heard the words, I know that the act of listening is still important. And sometimes I find myself grabbing my Bible after I’ve listened to something and looking at it again. Sometimes I sit in church and my mind wanders off while the Scripture is being read. The same thing happens in the car, but the great thing about audio technology is that I can listen again and again until I hear it…

  • 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…

  • blog update,  One Word,  unexpected blessings

    “Be Transformed…” an update

    When I first wrote about my focus for 2018, I wasn’t ready for it. But that is why God provided the opportunity for me to “Be Transformed…” As a creature of habit, personal change is pretty difficult for me, so I love how God tailored the opportunity to grow in this way for me this year. My Focus for 2018 As we approach the halfway point of this year, I want to share with all of you an update. How is 2018 going for me? What have I learned so far? What am I looking forward to? How am I still struggling and what steps am I taking to work…

  • 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…

  • Inspired,  unexpected blessings

    Generation Z

    Last week another tragedy hit our country and shook me. It shook a lot of people. I dove into the news coverage, afraid after 24 hours it would get buried under other less than important stories. But something extraordinary happened. Teens who were experiencing all the emotions that come with such a horrific event, were speaking with confidence, clarity and grace. I remember when Columbine happened. I was in 8th grade. The most significant event I remember prior to that was the Oklahoma City bombing. But now I was a teen and individuals just a few years older than me were dying in their school. It was scary and something…

  • blog update,  Inspired,  One Word,  unexpected blessings

    I wasn’t ready for 2018

    When the clock struck midnight on a new day and a new year I thought I was ready. 2017 had been a hard year for me, for us. In fact, I knew many people who were glad it was over. But the thing about time, is that it doesn’t stop. There’s no chance to recover. There’s no chance to pause and take a breath. And when Jan 1, 2018 hit, I wanted to be ready, but I wasn’t. I had picked a theme phrase and Bible passage and I was looking forward. I was waiting for a trip to NYC and the opportunity to attend a conference to start my year. While…

  • Inspired,  One Word,  unexpected blessings

    My Focus for 2018

    I’ve joined in the practice in selecting a word at the beginning of each new year. Most of the time, I have forgotten the word (as we forget or fail at resolutions), but I feel like it’s still an important exercise to end one year and begin another. A few days ago a friend posted a helpful resource, which helped me begin to think ahead for a word for 2018. I thought about this past year and how challenging it has been. Many words came to mind: listen, strength, attitude, etc…As I thought about all the different aspects of life in which I wanted to feel differently or more positively…

  • 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…