We Are Called to Love

It was a unexpected conversation with a friend. We both wanted make the world a better place and ensure we are living up to God’s desires for our lives, but we weren’t really sure if we were doing it.  We talked about all the signs we had seen, our spiritual gifts. the need we felt to serve others, and the calling on our hearts. The best way I can explain it is that we each felt called to make the world better, to be better, and to do better.  But we had absolutely no idea what that was. For me, it was exciting and strange at the same time – especially since I had no clue what we were supposed to be doing to acheive this goal. For my friend, it was just weird. And different. And strange. And that led us to an interesting conversation with two simple questions.

Why us? Why now?

The bottom line was that we knew if God placed the same feeling on our hearts, then the very least we could do is explore them and carry out His wishes. Especially since it led to the conversation where we discovered we both had the same feelings. Even though we didn’t know what that meant. One of us is a writer (ahem…me) so it would be easy to say, “We need to write a book!” But only one of us writes so…hmmmm. And the bigger question is, was the desire that was placed on our hearts something we were supposed to carry out individually, or together?

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This. Is. Hard.

One question that I get asked a lot in relationship to parenting is “How do you do it?” My answer is simple. “I have no clue.” The fact is that I don’t have a clue. I am convinced that when God called me to the realm of parenting – especialy parenting three children who are all one year apart – He knew that I would need Him more than ever. There was probably a time in my life where I would try to do it all and take credit for it all, but I’m here to tell you that the absolutely only way I can do anything in my life – including parenting three teens – I do with God’s grace, mercy, and guidance.

I’ve written here about some of our challenges and how God has definitely used them to make me not only a better parent but a better person in general. This year alone,  we joined a new church, I got a new job, I rediscovered a passion that I allowed to lie dormant for almost 20 years, and our family re-joined the world of homeschooling again.

While I am glad I followed God’s direction on all of these things, I can tell you hasn’t been easy. Part of that is because sometimes I’m not the most obedient follower of the guidance of the Holy Spirit. I know – don’t judge me.

Y’all. Life with three teenagers can be amazing and fun and exhilarating. They are busy and bustling with energy, and of course, there’s always something going on. Routines are beautiful, but just when we get settled into a new one, things change. Basketball practice is rescheduled, study group session times have changed, and SAT and ACT registration dates conflict with what we put on the family calendar.

So we adjust. And we laugh. A lot. And we pray. A lot. But the truth is this: We also cry. And some days are just hard. Continue reading

The Best Bible To Use

I have a friend named Mike. Mike is a bible scholar. Big Time. In our 20-plus years of friendship, I have always thought he has a billiant mind. And whenever I have a question about the bible, I ask him.

A couple of years ago, I asked him what I thought was a simple question.

What’s the best bible to use?

He shrugged his shoulders and looked at me very matter of factly and simply said, “The one you have.”

No. Just no. Where was the deep and profound analysis of all of the bibles in the world? Where was the recommendation of the specific bible that I just have to have? Where was the validation that I needed to buy a shiny, new bible to get my Jesus on? So I rephrased the question.

Based on your studies as a bible scholar, and based on your teaching of bible to the masses, what’s the best bible to use?

“The one you have. But since you obviously don’t like that answer, any study bible should work for your needs.” Continue reading

What I’ve Learned From Getting Dumped

Last month, for the first time ever in the history of having a cell phone,  I blocked someone. The person was not harassing me or stalking me, and we didn’t have a big argument. We weren’t really even friends. Acquaintances maybe, but even that’s a stretch. We also didn’t talk really frequently, which is why I never thought to block him before.

I blocked him because his narcissistic personality is not something I want in my circle of influence.

You see, once upon a time we were close. We were really good friends. We became involved romantically, and we talked about spending the rest of our lives together. Until the relationship ended abruptly.

Because he dumped me.  Continue reading

My Small Things

Let’s talk about your routines, Let’s talk about the mundane. Let’s talk about all the little things in your life that if left unattended to can bring you the greatest pain. Let’s talk about the little things in your life that if attended to, can bring you the biggest joys.

I’ve been reading again. Trust me, ya’ll. This one is good. Author Melanie Shankle released a new book this month and it’s all about appreciating the small things. Melanie  knows what it’s like to get so caught up in wanting something to take our breath away that we lose our amazement for every breath we take. In Church of the Small Things, she invites us to view our daily tasks as the holy and precious callings they are. As we see how real life meets eternity every day, we can let go of the pressure to experience big moments and delight in the small ones instead. Continue reading