What can often happen during holidays such as this – Easter, Christmas, Thanksgiving – is that our expectations for the holiday are based on nostalgia. There is this mixture of happy sentiments, childhood memories and associations that tell us what Easter is supposed to be; how it should taste, sound, smell and feel. So as we celebrate, we are in some ways looking to either recreate or even out-do a previously experienced celebration. Continue reading
This morning I was nursing my 6 month old son and suddenly I wanted to just memorize the moment. There was nothing extraordinary about the moment except the fact that I was noticing it. So I lingered in it, taking in all the details and trying to record them in my memory.
The way his baby soft, blonde hair was shining in the morning light. The way his big blue eyes held my gaze without any inhibitions like only infants can. The sound of his quiet swallows. The warmth and weight of his little body in my arms. His feet kicking against the chair. His pudgy little hand reaching up and grabbing my cheek and my lips.
Such an ordinary moment, and yet Continue reading
We’re at the end of January 2015. I am sure by now most people have already moved on from the feeling of starting a new year and are back into the full swing of daily life post holidays. In a lot of ways, I have too. Yet the things I have been thinking about and sharing here have been staying with me. Remembering to be gentle with myself in those moments when I am quick to put myself down. Remembering to take a deep breathe and experience abundance through Christ whether missing out on a simple treat or missing a loved one. I have one more theme that I am starting this year with and want to share a bit about it.
Recently a friend of mine introduced me to this concept as a great evaluation tool in decisions. We were talking about life with kids, and specifically about trying to take our children on outings but feeling like it is often so much work that it barely seems worth it from the parent perspective. Continue reading
We are still in January and this month I am exploring two or three of the themes that I have been thinking about at the start of this new year. You can read my first post here.
When I was in Bible college, at chapel one day a professor spoke on the difference between a scarcity mentality and an abundance mentality. It was one of those times when a talk impacted me in such a way that I remember it and think of it often even 8+ years later.
Having a scarcity mentality is believing that there is never enough. Continue reading
A new year has started. It’s the time when a lot of people set their minds to the goals they want to accomplish for the next 12 months. Eat better, read more, be more present in the moment, work out, be a good friend. However, I’ve also heard others talk about having a theme for the year. For myself, though I do have some of the typical hopes in regards to eating, being active, reading etc., I have just gone through so many months of change that goal setting seems too much. The coming year is still a bit mysterious to me. So this idea of themes fits more with where I am at. I am not ready to declare one grand theme for 2015, however, I have some thoughts that have been moving around my heart in the past few weeks. In January, I hope to explore a few of the thoughts and words that I am taking with me into 2015.
I have a two and a half year old little girl, and like most toddlers, she often has to be told to “be gentle!” She loves play time and can sometimes be a bit too rough. To save her toys from being broken, her little brother from being hurt, or even sometimes Mommy and Daddy, I say, “be gentle!” slowly helping her learn this concept of being careful with people and objects alike and not causing harm.
Sometimes I end up saying, Continue reading
Jesus said, “I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” (John 10:9-11)
Christmas is here! And this is why we celebrate – Jesus was born so that we can have life. He chose to become one of us and to lay down his life so we could be made new, so that we could be with him.
One of the songs on my heart this season is All Sons & Daughters song God With Us. You can listen to it here.
I pray for each one of you that you will be able to draw close to Jesus not just as a baby born thousands of years ago, but as God who did everything to be with us. I pray you will find your strength in His presence. I pray He will be your reason to sing. I pray He will be light to drive out any darkness.
I pray you will know him as this song describes –
God with us
On one hand it is all grace. We should not “try” because we cannot save ourselves, we can never try hard enough or be good enough, and that is not even what God requires. Grace teaches us to stop trying and instead accept that Jesus accomplished everything for us. We humbly get to accept the grace offered to us and find ourselves right with God not because of anything we have done, but because of what he has done. Even after accepting Jesus as Lord, it is not about trying to be transformed, but about letting the Holy Spirit work in us.
However, on the other hand, there are many places in the Bible that indicate there is definitely a part we play in our own spiritual growth and that it takes a great deal of effort even. Continue reading