weekend renewal

Hi there! I know, I know. It's been a while. Clearly, blogging and taking courses with CCEF can't happen at the same time for me. But I'm not sweating it. The work is just for a season and I am learning so much and I feel immensely blessed. I just completed my hardest course yet, on Biblical interpretation, and I am thankful for this much-needed break. I hope to write as much as I can in the next month before I'll likely disappear again for my final class. Of course, I can never begin writing again without playing in my blog sandbox. Don't expect any major changes, just a little fine-tuning … [Read more...]

weekend renewal

Hi, friends. Fall is upon us and I love it. Friday football games, watching both of my kids play in the marching band. Leaves beginning to change. Crisp, cool air. Cider and donuts and pumpkin bread. The fragrance of apples and burning leaves. I know nature will soon fall into a deep winter sleep, and yet it does not fade away quietly. The bounty of the harvest, the beauty of the color. Fall reminds us that being past the prime of summer does not mean that we are past our ability to offer the beauty within us. In fact, the older we are and the closer we are to Christ, the more vibrantly … [Read more...]

If You Give a Girl a Horse

If you give a girl a horse, she’s going to drive country roads to visit her horse at the barn. As she spends time at the barn, she’s going to discover how refreshing and peaceful it is. The physical work of grooming her horse will relax her body, clear her mind, and renew her spirit. When her mind is given freedom to roam, she’ll be surprised at how much the barn and land make her feel at home. And she’ll remember that she had always dreamed of a big piece of land of her own. When she remembers that dream of a big plot of land, she will ask her husband to take a drive to see a … [Read more...]

weekend renewal

You are the light of the world. A city situated on a hill cannot be hidden.  No one lights a lamp and puts it under a basket, but rather on a lampstand, and it gives light for all who are in the house.  In the same way, let your light shine before men, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven. [Matthew 5:1HCSB] There are many in this world who desperately need your gospel message and your godly influence. They need the light of truth. Light casts out darkness. Even the smallest of lights is still light that overcomes darkness. And you are the light of the … [Read more...]

In Which We Get a Horse (And How We Made the Decision)

A small poster given by a friend in second grade, tattered by a misty rain in spite of her best effort to keep the paper dry and clean. Once inside, she stared at the paper, mesmerized by the image it bore. As if it were yesterday, my girl remembers the day she discovered horses. And her wonder of this magnificent creature has never dimmed. Her love has only grown over the years, as posters have adorned the backside of her bedroom door and she's had a few opportunities to ride. Though never encouraged to grow larger than a low smolder, a dream was ignited that day to own a horse of her … [Read more...]

weekend renewal

Words I need today. Perhaps you do, too. Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!  Let your graciousness be known to everyone. The Lord is near.  Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.  And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable —if there is any moral excellence and if there is any … [Read more...]

weekend renewal

Decisions. Decisions. We're making big ones these days. Things have come together so quickly and so smoothly that it seems God-ordained. But when something involves a commitment of time and money, we want to be sure. We're seeking wisdom in prayer, and would appreciate your prayers today, if you have a moment. Meanwhile, I received the syllabus for my next class, and whoa, I never saw myself as a seminary girl. The course is Biblical Interpretation, and I'll be digging into Scripture like never before. I'm nervous about the workload, but so excited about what I will learn. I'd welcome your … [Read more...]

weekend renewal

We just returned from a trip Up North. I think that's a Michigan term, but correct me if I'm wrong. Around here, any place that is at least sixty miles north of where you live is considered Up North. So it's a relative term, too. For people in the city, Up North is not much farther than where I live. I get such a kick out of that. In many ways, Up North is more a state of mind than an actual place. Going Up North means getting away from the daily grind, enjoying the natural beauty of the outdoors, breathing in fresh air as you exhale the stresses of life. Up North is a place of adventure, a … [Read more...]

weekend renewal

One year after enrolling at CCEF, I completed the final exam for my third class. It has been an amazing year. Every course I've taken has been perfectly timed for my life, my counsel to others, and now even for the way I'll be able to serve my church. There are times in life when you just feel like you're walking blind. There are also times when you know you're walking exactly the path God designed, but it is a difficult path and every step is painful. And then there are times when you know you're walking exactly the path God designed, but it is so joyous you can hardly keep from running … [Read more...]