Wednesday mornings were a breath of fresh air for me for many years. When I had babies, I would go to women’s Bible study and put them in the nursery. Then I could sit down with other women to study the Word. It was wonderful! The study was great, but the break from the demanding work of parenting little ones was fantastic. Then would come April or May, and the study would end. We would be taking a break for summer. But I didn’t need a break from Bible Study, I needed a break from my kids!Read More
Leading a small group is a hard job. It can be intimidating to take on that task. To help you deal with some tricky situations that may arise, I’ve listed 10 phrases you will want to practice. Every small group leader should have these phrases in their tool box. Don't let tough situations keep you from serving God.
1. I hate to interrupt but we need to move on…Read More
I love attending the vibrant women’s Bible study in my church! I love it so much I did two of them last year.
Some studies have been life-changing.
I became closer to God, developed deep friendships and grew in my Bible knowledge.
Other years I started out with great enthusiasm but fizzled out before Christmas.Read More
I once knew a man who wanted to become "religious” but was held back by one thing. He said he would have to change too much before he could turn to God. I imagine he felt his lifestyle was too different from Christians he knew. He would have to clean up his act before he could come to church or start thinking about religion. How unfortunate he bought into that lie. And shame on us, the people of God, for having a history of judgment. The church should be a place of acceptance, not judgment, no matter where you are on your journey toward God.
The last two weeks we have been inspired by the example of the wonderful woman Jesus healed in Luke 13.Read More
Jesus healed this suffering woman and she turned her gaze towards heaven and praised God. All the glory went to the Almighty. This story in Luke 13 makes me so happy and I want to emulate this amazing woman! I want to accept the ways God loves me and praise him immediately. But that isn’t the end of the story of the crippled woman.
Not everyone was so pleased at this turn of events.Read More
After my third child was born I decided to start running to lose the last of the baby weight. You have to understand I was not an athlete as a kid. In fact, I had never run a mile without walking. When we ran the mile in high school gym class, I finished dead last and the coach looked worried and concerned at my beet red face. So, for me to pick up running was extraordinary. I started slowly and worked up to three miles. I ran my first 5k race and was so proud of myself. Ultimately, I ran several 5ks, several 10ks and some 5-mile races as well.
As I was lining up before a 5-mile race, I recognized a woman I knew.Read More
The other day I found myself with a blah feeling. Do you know the one? The feeling that things are fine, but nothing is great. The feeling that all the people around me are especially annoying. The feeling that I wish I were somewhere else, doing something else. The feeling that I just want to watch TV. I was in a funk.
If you had seen me, you might have wondered what I had to be in a funk about. I was sitting by a pool and staying at a beautiful cabin on a vacation.Read More
Erik Haviland is one of the staff members who makes Life Letter Cafe happen. I have had the privilege of working with him on a couple of occasions. Today I came across a post about the adoption he and his wife are pursuing. A 15-year old boy named Kolya (pronounced Cola) is going to age-out of his orphanage in Ukraine unless he is adopted soon.
The statistics surrounding kids who age out of the orphanages there are appalling.Read More
Anne Askew (1521-1546) was born into a wealthy family and could have lived an easy life. Instead the authorities tortured her, tried her, and burned her at the stake. She was only 25.
Her crime was converting from Catholicism to Protestantism under Henry VIII. Ironically, Henry also converted to Protestantism, but not for religious convictions. He converted to get out of his marriage to Catherine of Aragon.
Anne was outspoken about her protestant beliefs.Read More
My husband and I met at the orientation weekend of our freshman year at college. By the end of September, we were dating and by Thanksgiving, we both knew we would eventually marry. At 18 years old, we weren’t ready for marriage, nor were our parents keen on us getting married so young. We dated that year, sophomore year and junior year. Toward the end of our junior year we were struggling for many reasons. In our immaturity, we had developed many patterns of relating that were not healthy. We agreed we should break up.
That time was very hard for both of us. We remained broken up for another two years. I remember describing the fear and sadness I was feeling as a black hole.Read More
If we were to survey the world and ask all the people what makes a life significant, I imagine we would get a variety of answers:
- Making a positive impact
- Making a lot of money
- Being a good person
- Having people around you that you love
- Being famous
- Having people remember you when you are gone
- Not hurting anyone else
- Having fun
- Living each day to the fullest…YOLO!
Most people will identify 7th or 8th grade as one of their worst years. I loved 8th grade! I had a nice group of friends, teachers who invested in me, and a church community where I felt at home. My 8th grade graduation was a great day. It was 1983 and the feathered hair thing was all the rage. I tried my best with my uncooperative hair. I was wearing a white eyelet dress my mother made me. I tottered on heels that weren’t high, but were far higher than I could handle. During the ceremony, I received two awards that I wasn’t expecting. My all-time favorite teacher gave me one of them.
After the graduation the whole family gathered for ice cream at a favorite local shop. It was a simple celebration.