“The thing that you wish would go away, it’s showing you a better way to live.” —Ann Voskamp

These words were just what I needed today and maybe you do too. We would all probably say we are more than ready for the virus to head on out, but what are we learning? Are we moving towards a better way to live in the places that needed to change? What about the other factors that have nothing to do with this virus that will not go away? What are they showing us? When we think through this lens, maybe all the change will look different and we will be on the lookout for the good. Perhaps that is what 2020 is all about.





“But judgement will return to righteousness, and all the upright in heart will follow it.” Psalm 94:15

There is such wisdom, comfort, emotion, encouragement and love found in the book of Psalms. When I do not have the words, they can be found in this book. If you are in need during these uncertain days, just open your Bible to the very middle and you will find this book. I discovered this verse today and thought I would share it with you. While we are all waiting to return to somethings, it is very encouraging to know that righteousness will return and those whose hearts are in their proper place will follow.

DDB3CAB6-3FFD-4F9B-A129-36D1A0F76778Look with me at the verse that comes right before it. “For the LORD will not cast off His people, nor will He forsake His inheritance.” (94:14). If you have believed in the Lord Jesus Christ and accepted His payment on your behalf, then you belong to Him. We can rest secure knowing all else may fail, but eternity is our reward. The narrow road has some tough circumstances, but we keep going and remember who our God has been and will be; “…the LORD has been my defense, and my God the rock of my refuge.” (94:22). Why would He abandon those who belong to Him? Friend, He is a good Father and knows how to take care of what belongs to Him. He even offers us a place to rest along the way and to defend us from all the enemy tries to throw at us. And with that encouragement we can continue to trust as we walk on towards Home.


Who is Listening

“But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them.” Acts 16:25

The older I get the earlier I go to bed. I have not seen the midnight hour in quite sometime, but this was not the case with Paul and Silas. They had been lashed, thrown into prison and their feet were shackled. They must have been in pain, their future was uncertain and yet they made an incredible choice to pray and sing. Also, take note that they had an audience listening to them.

FA689AD7-AEF5-43C3-BA7C-12285E92116EThese two incredible prisoners made me think of the state we are in today. Much of what we use to do has stopped, there is uncertainty and maybe the walls of your home are starting to feel like a cell. Everyday each of us are making decisions on how we respond. Whatever we decide, one thing we need to remember is that other people are listening. So what will they hear? Will it be fear or trust? Will we choose sides and blast blame across the aisle? Will we spend more time soaking up the news or truth of the scriptures? Whatever we choose will be made evident to everyone we have the rare opportunity to spend time with the moment we speak.

Honestly, for me some days are better than others and I always have an audience. What will my family remember when they look back over 2020? Will it be the acknowledgement of uncertainty, but that as a family we went the way of trust? I am praying it is the way of trust and loving each other well. Our singing may look more like praise music blasting inside and out and our prayers are preciously spoken from the mouths of my children, but to those listening I hope you join in. Who knows? Maybe other captives will be set free.



“Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell me, if you have understanding. Who determined its measurements? Surely you know!” Job 38:4-5

I use to stay away from the book of Job, but then it became one of my favorites. This man lost so much in a very short amount of time, but remained firm in his faith; even when others tried to turn him away from truth. And then in the midst of suffering, loss and opposition, the Lord comes to speak with him. He asks Job question after question, each one dripping with authority and power. In humility Job responds, “I have heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees you. Therefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes.” (42:5-6).

3D2DC3B1-520C-409C-9832-AA4C6831FA03Job had two choices when life became hard and uncertain. He could turn away from the Lord or remain faithful. Are we not given the same opportunity? Times are uncertain, there is much loss and people are suffering. We have more questions than answers and opinions are growing louder. What are we to do? Perhaps the words spoken by the Lord to Job bring you hope like they do me. If our God laid the foundations of the earth, can He not be trusted now? He is much more than we can wrap our created minds around and completely in control. May we each ask the Lord to let us see Him in the midst of the unknown and not just go by what we hear about Him. I have a feeling we will fall on our faces, overwhelmed with His glory and repent for how we have acted towards Him. May today be the day.



Shine Bright

 “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” Ephesians 6:12

This verse is being quoted often these days as a constant reminder that we are engaged in a battle. It also helps us remember that it is not people we are fighting, but an unseen enemy. Sometimes we swing at the ones we can see. As believers, we are to “…have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them.” (Ephesians 5:11). The question is, how do we do this without sinning? How do we not “grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed on the day of redemption.” (Ephesians 4:30)?

DF13676D-753B-4389-B149-DACA6D98DDEAWhen we look to scripture, we find the help we need as “imitators of God as dear children.” (5:1). We are to, “…walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God…” (5:2). Paul also writes specifically about our words when he says, “Let no corrupt word proceed from your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.” (4:29). Also, “Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice.” (4:31). So, I have to ask us, how are we doing as followers of Christ?

One of my girls and I discussed this topic. She said maybe it has to do with our intentions. When we disagree or want to expose darkness, is our tendency to clamor to be heard and prove ourselves right? Things can get heated pretty quick when we are passionate. Maybe we need to ask ourselves if we are edifying, giving grace, speaking truth or simply bashing someone we disagree with? Have you ever been won over to another way of thinking because of angry words being shouted at you? Yeah, me neither. We know “the days are evil” (5:16) and should respond accordingly, even when it comes to our words. Perhaps this will cause us to stand out as light and not contribute to the ever increasing darkness of hate.

Let’s shine bright, friends!


The Beside Ministry

“Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.” Romans 12:15

Sitting with friends yesterday was good. We talked about what was on our hearts and studied the Bible together. I always leave better than I came and I discovered the reason why. These friends are not trying to fix me. They are good listeners and this is an incredible gift to me. It makes me want to be a better listener too. So often I have offered my opinion or “this is what I have done” advice. If someone wants my opinion or asks what did you do in a particular situation, then perhaps there is freedom to answer. Maybe more damage is done to an already hurting heart when answers or opinions are fired instead of silence. I need to remember how I felt yesterday and do the same the next time I am given the privilege of hearing someone’s heart. If they are rejoicing, we listen and do the same. If they are mourning, we listen and do the same.

FFCB893B-D9D8-47C5-A1FA-BC70508B4664This is easier when it comes to kids because they talk so much. If I do not listen to the small things often, they will not share the bigger things later. As a mom, having the opportunity to talk can release days of thoughts and words a mile a minute. Add in my excitement over scripture and it takes some serious self-control to listen. Thankfully, this is one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit living inside and I can ask for help.

You know everyone has something in their lives that causes them to rejoice or mourn, especially during these days. Sometimes the day is filled with both. It appears we are being presented with a great opportunity to practice listening, rejoicing and mourning. Maybe this will be the gift that causes someone who does not yet know the Lord to consider Him. So, do you want to join me in the beside ministry?


“…rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God.”                1 Peter 3:4

I did something on Saturday that should have happened the minute our oldest daughter was born. I threw out our bathroom scale. That small light up machine was  getting too much power handed to it. A pound up or down was able to hold a place in my mind that influenced my worth. A number should not have that kind of control. This is not me giving up being healthy or deciding to eat everything in sight. No, this is putting weight and appearance both in their proper place. There is such freedom found in letting that indicator go and remembering what is precious in the sight of God.

ABC0B01D-9F17-4FF5-81AB-C07491F1138DThink about it, when you look back over your life and the older people that have loved you well, do you know how much they weighed? It is not the first thing that usually comes to mind is it? No, it is how they made you feel, the fun memories you made together and the kind words they spoke to you that make you smile. The ones with an “incorruptible beauty” seem to stand out in my mind. Perhaps we can also remember  the truth and “know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own” (1 Corinthians 6:19). Maybe then taking care of ourselves looks more of taking care of what belongs to God. We can be a good steward of His temple without obsessing over the ideal number we come up with.

This might have just been for me, but maybe you needed the reminder for yourself. Either way I hope we remember the truth about beauty and lets get busy making good memories with those we love.


A Good Man

Dear Damon,

Today is your special day and I wanted to honor you with a few words. I hope it is ok with you that a few others will read this little note too.

When I first met you I thought you were cute. I watched you serve all day long beside high school boys in the hot sun and never heard a word of complaint. You had this way of being very comfortable behind the scenes and making sure others shined. You remind me of a quote I read recently that said something like bright lights not needing spotlights. It takes a humble man to live serving others and not desiring praise for yourself. I like that about you.

E4A2E21C-75F7-48FB-BE61-AF322F6626DDIn our years together, your quiet strength is something I find very comforting and honorable. You are easy to trust. You do not waste time sowing seeds that do not matter, but make the most of your time. I think of your car conversations with the kids, you and Maggie’s breakfast dates and our weekly date nights. How many words of love and kindness have you made sure took root? How many hours have you spent listening?

You live with integrity because you know that is right and pleasing to your Heavenly Father. I thought the group you were asked to be apart of called Better Man was quite fitting. It makes me smile to see others recognize your heart. And you know, our family knows the truth better than most and we would all agree you are one of the best.

So, happy birthday and know how much I love you. There is not any better man I would want by my side.



“For this our God is our God for ever and ever; He will be our guide even to the end.” Psalm 48:14

I have absolutely no sense of direction, none. Right and left can be hard for me. Many a time I have called my husband to help me get back home. Yes, I am aware of the whole map thing on our phones and GPS in the car, but I would much rather hear his voice leading me home. I trust him.

B33703C5-8101-4F36-A080-247CA53C600CThe same is true with our God. While we have many options available, only one will take us home. Knowing His voice, while we are moving closer everyday, keeps us on the narrow road. When a crossroad appears, we can hear His voice telling us which way to go. He truly is better than any system the world has to offer. And you know what is such a blessing along the way? Having others on the road with you.

To Go Back…

“Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.” Galatians 1:10

Since today we remembered it has been 22 years since our first date, we had to celebrate. We may not have been able to go to the pizza place in downtown Asheville for lunch or to a movie, but we made time for just the two of us.

8D06A4FF-292D-4A92-9F5C-E56ACF2E6879With 22 years behind us, I had this thought about how incredible it would be to go back in time and have a conversation with my younger self as I was getting ready that day. I would not give all the details about what was ahead, but it would be hard not to smile a lot. What I would like to say to that younger girl in the mirror would be to stop trying to earn your worth by trying to act and look perfect. You can either please people and ultimately serve their ever changing expectations or aim to please the Lord and serve Him. The amazing part is you will be serving people in love and truth in the most beautiful way by setting Him as your first love. I would just look into those unsure eyes and tell her that He is trustworthy. Then I would take a post it and write Galatians 1:10 to stick on that bathroom mirror as a daily reminder of loving truth.

Since time travel is not on the itinerary for today, I will pass this verse on to you. Put it up on your mirror or screensaver if you need it. If you want to be a servant of Christ, pleasing Him should be your top priority. Do not worry if He will accept you as one of His own, for the cross already answered that question. Remember how much He loves us and get busy living loved. You will be stunning!