Sunday, January 3, 2016

Letters to My Daughters- A Mixed Up Life

I have had it in mind from the time my oldest daughter, Adelae, was born to write her letters throughout her life. Now that I have three daughters this desire has only increased. My hope is to write my thoughts and wisdom now, rather than in reaction to events later in life.  My thought in publishing these letters is that perhaps someone else's daughter my gain from the simple wisdom I hope to impart.

My Beautiful Daughters,

The purpose of my letters to you is that I may pass along the wisdom I have gained. You are young now, but wisdom is timeless. My desire is that I can begin compiling a stack of letters for your future. Throughout your lives the world will overwhelm you with an array of ideals. Most will be tantalizing at best, but some will yield true promise. My hope is that you will cling to wisdom and discernment, for they are your compass; without them, you will find yourselves lost in the lies of the culture and society. I pray that each of you will desire wisdom far beyond the empty words of a fallen world. “For wisdom is better than jewels, and all that you may desire cannot compare with her.” (Proverbs 8:11) 

My first bit of wisdom comes from the beloved, Anne of Green Gables. 
“Things are so mixed up in real life. They aren’t clear-cut and trimmed off, as they are in novels.” (Anne of the Island)

You will never be the perfect heroine of your life. People will break your heart. You will fail though you try. Prince Charming will not come riding in on a white stallion. Life is messy, and we all enter this world with flaws. Don’t buy into the lie that a person or position will complete your life. There will always be struggle with no guarantee of a happy ending. I don’t tell you this to squash your dreams, keep dreaming. I’m telling you this so that you are more equipped to reach those dreams. 

“Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.” (Romans 5:3-5)

So, while there may be no perfect husband, no perfect job, no perfect children, you must endure through the heartache. Know that although there is a great reality in the failures of humanity, there is an even greater reality in the faithfulness of God. The Holy Spirit will not allow you to be put to shame, for there is always hope in Christ.  He has graciously placed beauty and laughter in the midst of life's sorrows. They are the powerful reminders that His light can always be found. 

Keep dreaming, knowing that although you will stumble, you will not be put to shame. 



Monday, November 9, 2015


In the Bible Study I help co-lead I recently spoke on our responsibilities as mothers to our children. While prepping for the talk I asked a dear friend how she reminded herself of her priorities as a mother? She had a few clever little sayings like "Discipline them Diligently," and "Love them Lavishly" that helped her maintain the proper perspective throughout the day. After all, it's so easy to get caught up in the chaos of the day and forget our purpose as mothers! Eventually we came up with the acronym "D.A.R.L.I.N.G.S." My hope and prayer is that it will help to remind other busy moms where our focus needs to be.

Discipline them Diligently
“Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him.” Proverbs 13:24

What is preventing me from disciplining them?

Always Appreciate Them
“Behold, children are a gift of the Lord,
The fruit of the womb is a reward.”  
Psalm 127:3

Am I viewing them as a blessing or a burden?

Remind Them of the Redeemer
“These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart.  You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up.” Deuteronomy 6:6-7

Have I taught them the Word, to pray, to worship, and to serve?

Love Them Lavishly
“Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.” 1 John 3:18

Am I responding to them with love?

Intercede for Them Intently
“Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving.”  Colossians 4:2

Am I praying for them?

Notice Their needs
“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.” James 1:5

Am I seeking God’s wisdom moment by moment?

Give Them to God
“Whoever loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves his son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.” Matthew 10:37

“For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11

Have I given them over to God and trusted His will for their lives?

Safeguard Their Souls
“Watch over your heart with all diligence,
For from it flow the springs of life.”
Proverbs 4:23

Am I aware of what has influence over my children?

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Speaking Truth in Friendships

I have the honor and joy of being on an all women’s softball team. I say 'honor', because I have always lacked the amount of coordination that’s required for sports.  I say 'joy', because the ladies have no idea what a true blessing they are in my life.  Part of me is convinced that they let me on the team because of my awesome wind-up before I lob the ball about 10 feet.  Think “Rookie of the Year,” minus the speed and distance. Regardless of the reason, I’m happy to be on a team with such positive and encouraging women--who love me for who I am, wind-up and all. 

Part of my team exemplified something beautiful this week. Our game had been rained out, so we took the time to get in some much needed practice. Desiring to use the most of ‘kid free’ time, we soon found ourselves at Happy Hour.  We had been chatting for a while when I got a phone call from my husband.  I had totally forgotten to tell him I was going out after practice!  Cringing, I answered my phone.  He wasn't thrilled that it was 9:15 and I hadn't called to let him know.  I hung up the phone and explained the situation to the ladies. 

At this point the conversation could have gone anywhere.  The common response is husband bashing, gossip, or false assumptions.  “Who does he think he is?’  "He’s not your keeper!” "You’re a grown woman!”  These are all things women often say to their friends to show their loyalty and support.  That’s not how the conversation went.  Instead, we had an open and honest discussion about what happened. We discussed how nice it was to have a husband that cared enough to call. A friend brought up how she reacts when her husband is out. We also talked about insignificant things that we make into larger issues.  Our discussion lasted about 5-10 minutes and ended with, “do you need to go call him back?”  I stepped away, called my husband, made peace, and enjoyed the rest of my night. 

Being vulnerable and transparent with my friends allowed them to show the support that a marriage needs to thrive.  I was shown that they care not only about me, but also about my marriage.  After all, I can’t truly be happy and content when I’m at odds with my husband. I could have gone home bitter and angry.  Partly because of their response, I went home feeling thankful and cared for.  We woke the next morning joyful, and started the day off on a positive note. 

My team reminded me of how to genuinely support someone.  It’s not in platitudes or a swift response.  True friends take the time to understand the truth of a situation, and assess it wisely. It’s easy for us to respond to our friends with what we think they want to hear. However, as His followers, Christ desires for us to be open and frank with one another. Paul speaks of this in Ephesians 4:25 when he says, “Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.” 

Thursday, April 30, 2015


I was recently asked to share (very briefly), at a women’s event, about my experiences regarding friendships in the early stages of motherhood. Since the request, the topic of friendship has been on my mind. Specifically, I’ve been thinking a lot about the importance of transparency in my relationships. Learning to be transparent with the people God has placed in my life has been one of the most beneficial lessons God has taught me. I’ve come to learn that transparency benefits everyone in the relationship. 

Ephesians 5:13-14 says, “But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible, for anything that becomes visible is light. Therefore it says, “Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead and Christ will shine on you.”” 

This is such an important verse about the power of transparency! As my mentor, Jodi, used to tell me, “God cannot redeem what we don’t shine light on.” If we don’t open up about our hurts and struggles God can’t heal us. It’s only when we bring things into light that sin can be shown for what it is. I was reading a commentary about this verse and loved what it said, “Evil can no longer masquerade as anything else.” Because that’s exactly what it does when we hide it away. We either try to pretend that the sin doesn’t exist, or we dress it up with excuses. When we share our sins and burdens with others it brings them out into the light. Did you catch the best part of the verse? Not only does the light show us the true nature of sin…it can also transform the darkness into light! “…for anything that becomes visible is light.” God literally takes our brokenness, heals us, and then uses it to glorify His name! I’m pretty sure this is why God commands us to “bare one another’s burdens” and “confess your sins one to another.” The primary reason God puts us into community is for His glory. A glory that can only be achieved through Christ-centered relationships that encourage mutual sanctification. 

I realize that this all sounds well and good on paper, but the reality of being vulnerable can be terrifying. It’s in these moments that we must trust God’s word and plan. We can remember and hold onto the fact that He is always faithful. In my life, every time I have chosen transparency God has blessed me. It has either brought forth healing in my life, or healing in another’s life. The fact is, we never know the pain and hidden sorrow in someone else’s life, we never know how our story can encourage and impact that person. God moves in our lives and is purposeful in who He places around us. We have the choice to honor God in these friendships or merely use them as a passing comfort or vague form of entertainment. I’m sure you’ve heard the catch phrase “united we are stronger,” imagine the strength of true unity in Christ. A unity that that grows from transparency and vulnerability. 

Over the next few weeks I’m hoping to highlight a few stories that illustrate the power of transparency in our friendships. I’d love to hear how God has used your moments of vulnerability.

Also, if you'd like to come to the event (on 5/9/15) mentioned above (it's all about friendship), please follow the link below: