God’s cure for sleepless nights

God’s cure for sleepless nights

Sleepless nights are not my friend. After having six kids, scattered over 16 years, I thought the years of little sleep would be over when my babies learned to sleep through the night.

All too soon those babies became teenagers and stayed out late with their friends, which is one of the leading causes of midnight mother-worry.

Now that those kids have all grown up and moved out of the house, I still wake up sometimes at 1:30 or 3:00 in the morning! (And I sware it’s not out of habit.)

What if there was a cure for sleepless nights?

Something that would enlarge your soul AND ward off Alzheimer’s at the same time?… Read the rest

Do You Need a Christmas Manifesto?

This Christmas season is different because I retired from full-time ministry three months ago. I kind of thought I’d have more time for reading, pondering and celebrating. I have… some. But not as much as I’d like.

Mixed in with this is the amount of people I’ve encountered who feel that Christmas isn’t high on their radar. Some are lonely or grieving and want to get past the holiday quickly.

Others have a ton of stuff on their plate and feel that Christmas must be squeezed into the tiny margins of their schedule.

It seems that no matter where we are in our life journey, we can quickly fall into the trap of filling up of our days with to-do lists and our inner lives with the clutter of despondency, worry, negative self-talk or other unnecessary thinking that eats away at our energy, peace and time.… Read the rest

Come Explore the Hallway of Advent

Come Explore the Hallway of Advent

Don’t you hate the waiting? That long, lonely hallway between what was and what is to come? The waiting hallway filled with doubt, “what ifs,” and fear of the unknown, even though you know there’s a God promise at the end of that hallway?

We all encounter these hallways.

Some we expect, and some we chance upon surprised that we’ll have to trudge down a long, narrow walkway to get to the next part of our journey.

We usually don’t embrace these hallways. They aren’t smooth walking or lit with joy. We often see them filled with the tangled, dark, thorny branches of a scary, night forest—The Great Unknown.… Read the rest

You are incredible. Don’t forget it.

You are incredible. Don’t forget it.

You stopped counting how many holiday dishes you’ve cooked through the years.

The dishes you’ve washed after the feast are up in the millions.

The house? Oh yes, you’ve cleaned until your nails looked ratty.

And most of the time, you’ve loved every minute of cooking, cleaning, and washing dishes.

Because the people you care about are represented in the sweat of the work.

Will they say, “Thank you?”

Sometimes. Hopefully.

But, if not, you’ll still shine on the inside.

You’re wired that way. To give, nurture, and care for the people God has given you.

You are incredible

You hope everyone will get along this year.… Read the rest

When Holiday Expectations Disappoint

My dad was ticked, and he had no problem letting me know it.

For years we had spent Thanksgiving with my folks at their house.

A month later we would gather our six kids into the car and drive an hour on Christmas Eve afternoon to my mom and dad’s house again.

We’d have a big family dinner and then pack ourselves, and my sibling’s families, into various corners of the family home to spend the night.

The next morning was wild with laughter, kids, presents, a huge breakfast and, later, dinner. I spent most of my time in the kitchen along with my sisters helping Dad cook for this huge, hungry crowd.… Read the rest

A Red Hot Grandma Story on Hearing God

A Red Hot Grandma Story on Hearing God

Do you ever wonder if you’re hearing God right when facing a difficult decision? Like, maybe if you aren’t, you’ll be making a really big mistake? Me too.

We’d just gotten home after a month’s vacation abroad when we realized that our 14-year old Honda Civic had to go.

The retirement years before us were going to be a financial adventure, and we didn’t want to be hit with car repair surprises. We thought it wiser to be making manageable monthly payments on a new car with a good warranty. Besides, the Honda October sales were begging us to help clear out the dealership of this year’s cars.… Read the rest

4 Ways to Spoil Your Grandchildren With the One Thing That Will Never Spoil

It is always a pleasure to share my blog with someone who has a passion for passing on the faith within families. Christie Thomas is one such remarkable lady. She is an author, family faith blogger, and Director of Children’s Ministry at her church. I was thrilled when she agreed to share her wisdom with us this week. I know you’ll find her 4 Ways to Spoil Your Grandchildren insightful, easy to do, and eternally impacting.

When my three boys go to Grandma and Grandpa’s house, they know they are going to have a blast. Every visit includes at least one trip down the zip line, a bonfire, and a trek to the old cabin to find the never-empty box of cookies.… Read the rest

What to pray when people need uninvited God encounters

What to pray when people need uninvited God encounters

Do you ever feel you need a fresh view of Jesus? Do you want to see a new aspect of His personality you haven’t encountered before?

I do.

That’s what a growing relationship with the Lord looks like. We discover new facets to His personality and experience His glory in each.

Recently I read a few short paragraphs about the woman at the well in The Imperfect Disciple by Jared C. Wilson.

You remember the story…

Jesus is alone at a well in the middle of the day—a time when only travelers and outcasts frequent a well.

A woman shows up.… Read the rest

How to simplify your life right now

How to simplify your life right now

Do you remember the simple things of childhood—after school games of hide-and-seek, kick the can, or swimming in the old swimming hole?

OR, as you grew older, you’d grab a hamburger after school and walk over to a friend’s house to study before going to the Friday night game?

I don’t remember ever having a conversation on how to simplify your life when I was growing up.

No one had a cell phone. A chat was face to face or over a telephone mounted on the wall and shared with the other members of your family.

No one had internet.

We didn’t know we needed it.… Read the rest

What to do when the world falls apart

Summer’s transition into fall hasn’t gone so well this year, has it?

My youngest son lives 10 minutes from where the August 17th, Barcelona terrorist attack occurred. Another son and his family live in Helsinki, Finland, not far from where another terrorist attack happened the day after the tragedy in Spain.

Don’t you know that my mother’s heart was shouting, “What the hey?!? Those are MY babies!”

Next, on the world stage, we have North Korea defying the world with her nuclear threats aimed at the United States, and Russia distancing herself from America. That doesn’t make me feel real comfortable!… Read the rest

10 things to do with your grandchildren this school year

Having grandchildren in school opens up some unique opportunities for grandparents to be involved in their lives.

I know you may think that this is difficult if you live far away from your grandkids, work at a busy job, or aren’t able to get out on your own much.

But it’s not. Among the 10 ideas I’m sharing in this post are ones you can do even if you aren’t able to be active in their lives in person.

10 things you can do to participate in your grandchildren’s school year

Don’t wait to be invited to be involved. You’re the grandma here, so put on your big girl panties and participate in your grandchildren’s school year!… Read the rest