Hope for the Hurting
The new year is upon us now, but as is common at this time of year, it has me reflecting on the past year. As I think back on the past year, one word comes to mind: Messy. I lost several loved ones prematurely for my liking. Several relationships proved challenging and difficult. Changes in business and ministry direction occurred which I wasn’t expecting. And several friends and I received painful cancer diagnoses and began treatment.
Those were things that primarily happened to me. Things I wouldn’t wish on anyone.
Yet our messes don’t just include the things that happen to us, do they?read more
Experience has a way of teaching us some of life’s most valuable lessons, while pain and heartache add the exclamation point for emphasis. This past year certainly held some highlights for me: going on tour with Redemption Press to the Women of Joy conferences, signing a new book contract and writing the book, and winning the Christian Literary Readers Choice Award for “The Hope Prevails Bible Study”.
Conversely, while those were highlights of the year, this year also held several low points: a son’s boating accident and subsequent surgery, changing career direction, and receiving a cancer diagnosis for starters.read more
How many times in a day, week, or month do you ask, “What if…?” I know that when I start asking “What if…?” I’ve opened up the door to worry, fear, and anxiety. And that’s not a pleasant place to camp out. There is a reason God told us over 300 times in the Bible to “Do not be afraid,” “Fear not,” and “Be anxious for nothing.” He knew we would struggle. Read more for what to do when anxiety hits.read more
It’s that time of year again—that time when we naturally start taking an assessment of how our year has gone, and an inventory of the goals we both did and didn’t achieve over the course of the year. How does that make you feel?
Every year we seem to start off the same way. New Year’s Day comes and we are filled with anticipation, excitement, and resolve to make this the best year yet. Frequently, somewhere along the line, our motivation or perhaps our momentum gets suspended. Often, we mess up and give up believing not only have we failed, but we are a failure.read more
Does the end of one year and start of the next leave you frustrated or disappointed? Was last year all you had anticipated it would be? Did things go as you planned, or at some point did you find yourself upside down or inside out from where you expected?
If you had asked me a year ago to bullet point for you what my year would hold, I can tell you now, I would have been way off base. I never would have predicted neck surgery, a boating accident with my son with subsequent surgery, being directed by God to close my private practice and enter into a season of rest before being diagnosed and undergoing surgery and treatment for cancer.read more
That got your attention, didn’t it? She says with a smile and a wink ;–)
Actually, there’s a difference between laziness and idleness. Laziness is an aversion or disinclination to work, activity, or exertion, and has a rather negative connotation. None of us wants to think of ourselves, or our children as “lazy.” Idleness, on the other hand, is a state of being inactive, of choosing to do nothing for a period of time. That’s what I’m really talking about.
Research has found that periods of idleness is actually beneficial to us.read more
With one son a sophomore in high school, and another son a sophomore in college and in all likelihood never returning to live under our roof, I think about how fast the time has gone.
I recently searched for family photos for a project I was working on, and as I did, the years raced through my mind. Didn’t we bring them home from the hospital yesterday? It seemed like just a few days ago they learned to walk, talk, and ride a bike. How is it possible that our oldest is quickly approaching the launch into his career and our youngest is preparing to apply to college?
Maybe you’ve never done this, and maybe it’s just me, but I suddenly became very insecure in my mothering.read more
I saw God’s faithfulness in a huge way this past Saturday. Saturday evening was the Christian Literary Awards and the “Hope Prevails Bible Study” had been nominated in the Bible Study category. I had been so sick after treatment that I truly wasn’t sure I was going to be able to make it until that evening when I just decided, sick or not, I was going. Evenings and nights tend to be my hardest time, and this event ran into the late evening, but God gave me the strength to make it through.read more
Alas, if we had hoped for a Norman Rockwall Christmas, this year wouldn’t deliver. Rather than the iconic painting, it seemed ours might look a little more like the classic Charlie Brown motley crew around their scrawny tree.
Some years it just seems we’re doing well just to “hold it all together.”
After receiving a new cancer diagnosis, doctors’ appointments, surgery, and procedures ensued. “I don’t have time for all this now,” I thought, as I considered all the holiday preparations yet to be made. But then again, I had to make time for it.read more
I had just turned in my manuscript to my publisher for my new book about overcoming worry, fear, and anxiety (releasing fall, 2019) when people began to ask the obvious question, “What are you going to do now?”
I didn’t have a ready answer for that. I had originally assumed that as soon as I turned in the manuscript for that book, I would begin work on a companion Bible study. Yet when the time came, it didn’t sit well in my spirit.
Over the next couple of weeks, God shared his plan for my next season: a season of rest.read more
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