How I’ve Kept My Joy, Even Through the Stinky Seasons

I felt a literal blast of joy the other night, clutching my seat belt and praying in the spirit while my 16-year-old drove us around the block for the first time at night. Somewhere between the cul-de-sac and my near panic attack, we were astounded by this 20 foot high, illuminated “JOY” sign in the yard of someone clearly determined to let his Christmas fervor shine. Either that or he lost a bet. I loved that moment. Not only because I was able to regain my vital signs after Jack stopped the car, but it made me happy to see the word joy displayed so openly in a spiritually bleak New England, where most “joy” comes in a Starbucks cup. Read more…

Continue Reading

Top 5 Most Ridiculous Things About the Holidays

When us Gen Xer’s were young, we crafted hand-written Christmas lists, crossed our fingers and hoped Aunt Ruth would show up with a Barbie instead of her her timeless tradition of buying books and cardigans. There were no itemized digital lists with specific model numbers and sharable links. The Amazon wish list is the Type-A shopper’s dream. Simply upload every last gift request for each kid, share through Gmail or Facebook and there you have it: the most efficient way to guarantee loved ones stick with the plan. Read More…

Continue Reading

The Key to Victory: Trusting God

trustgod I wonder how drastically our lives would change if we completely trusted the Lord with everything. I wonder how many mistakes and heartaches would be avoided and how many of our dreams and hopes would be realized more quickly if we trusted God instead of growing impatient and opting for a plan B that will let us down. Trusting God seems like it should come easily to Christians, but how often have we found ourselves in a wrong relationship, making a bad financial decision, or relying on our own strength because we grew tired of “trusting the Lord and leaning not on our own understanding?” I think the last time I leaned on my own understanding, I unknowingly joined an illegal pyramid scheme. Good times. Read More…

Continue Reading

Our Faith Must be Hiding Under Trump’s Hair

indexI’ve made it through an entire election season without a peep. Not a Facebook share, not a Tweet, not a friggin’ blog post about anything political. Divisiveness destroys us, and after our choice of candidates plummeted to a decision between a would-be felon and a butt-grabbing egomaniac, I checked out. But even the strongest powers of denial have their limits, and after witnessing the irrational spewage of hate and crazy on social media this week, specifically from born again Christians, I fold. Read More…

Continue Reading

Five Truths We Forget, that Keep us Close to God

baby-mother-tree_siIf I look back at the seasons of my life since becoming a Christian, there is an absolute correlation between my closeness with God and the quality of my relationships, finances, ministry, career path…pretty much everything else in life. I’m pretty sure my hair grew faster. This shouldn’t come as a shock, of course. We all know life improves when we’re in God’s will, because he not only knows what’s best for us, he desires it. The problem is, even the strongest of Christians can lose sight of the simplest of truths and fall out of good habits, ultimately leading to experiencing less God and a less abundant life. Here are a few solid reminders we all need now and again. Read more…

Continue Reading

Five Truths about the Power of Forgiveness

forgive-finger-art_siForgiveness is a staple of the Christian faith. We know that Christ died so we can receive forgiveness, and we know we’re called to forgive others. But sometimes we might not fully grasp the necessity and power of true forgiveness due to a lack of knowledge, or feelings of bitterness we haven’t dealt with. Here are a few truths to remember about forgiving. Read…

Continue Reading

5 Scriptures that Will Re-Define Your Prayer Life

woman-praying-3-1Prayer is one of the most intimate ways to connect with God, one of the most powerful spiritual warfare tools, and for me, the clearest way God demonstrates his love. But what’s amazing is after more than 15 years of being a Christian, I’m still learning so many principles about prayer that I never realized. Sometimes we either treat prayer too lightly, or pray about half the things, half of the time we should. It’s  easy to forget or take for granted the sheer awesomeness of being able to talk to God, but here are some scriptures some I’ve recently re-discovered that reinforce the power of prayer. Read More…

Continue Reading

Why I Cry About God’s Goodness, Every Day

woman-591576__340I literally cry, every morning, thinking about God. It usually happens on my drive to work, or during my quiet time, after the kids go to school. I’ll blast my Bethel Worship music, focus on him, and then bam: tears. Not the violent, Claire Danes from Homeland kind of sobs. But just a silent trickle, after instantly being overwhelmed at how quickly I can personally connect with the creator of the universe, and how quickly I feel his love, when I do. Read More…

Continue Reading

3 Things Prison Ministry Has Taught Me About God

prison4
Sometimes we think we have God all figured out. Many of us base our spiritual fortitude on the fact that we’ve attended church for years, read the Bible cover to cover and lead a pretty solid prayer life. I was one of those Christians, and then I joined a ministry visiting institutionalized teens, and it rocked my world. After a life-changing journey of holding Bible studies within juvenile detention centers, I understood some concepts about God in a much deeper way.

Continue Reading

Best Biblical Promises That Banish Fear

blogtwimport140619-fear-with-truth
When I think about the root cause of so many mistakes and spiritual pitfalls in my life, the source seems to be the one and only, the ugly, fear. Fear will cause us to buckle and settle for less than God’s best. It’ll cause us to disobey after diluting our trust in Him, and even when do stay strong, it’ll rob us of our peace and joy. Here are some of the best scriptures helping us overcome fear by increasing our faith. Read More…

Continue Reading