It Starts With Me: A Mother’s Honest Confession

It’s July in Minnesota.  We are not quite half-way through our summer break, and if I’m completely honest… I have been STRUGGLING!  I’ve been struggling with my patience, struggling with my temper, and struggling with this whole parenting thing.

I have three kiddos and I love them to pieces.  They are truly a blessing in my life.  You know that saying, “children are a gift from above?”  It’s true!

But let’s be real.  My kids don’t always behave in a manner that conjures up warm, fuzzy, “I’m feeling so blessed right now” emotions.  Continue reading

Running On Faith

The wind gust blew hard against my tired body.  My feet felt clumsy and heavy, almost as if they were encased in cement blocks instead of snug inside my trusty asics running shoes.  To make matters worse, half-way through my run, I started to feel a cramp in my side.

This was supposed to be an easy run!  It was a mile shorter than my last trek.  I didn’t even have the usual added resistance and weight burden that came from pushing my 2 ½ year-old-daughter in our jogging stroller.

Continue reading

You Are Not Alone

I could hear the baby wailing from across the department store. My first reaction was to breathe a sigh of relief that it wasn’t one of my kids.  I was enjoying a quiet shopping trip all alone, a scenario that rarely happens, especially on a Friday afternoon.

My husband had the day off and had graciously offered me a chance to sneak away so I could buy some much-needed items for myself. We both knew what a nightmare it could be to try to corral our kiddos in a dressing room while we frantically tried on clothes.  I was definitely relishing in this unexpected moment of retail solitude. Continue reading

Straight Paths

When I was a young girl, one of my favorite things to do in the summer was to explore the ravine behind my best friend’s house. She had a huge backyard filled with what seemed like an endless forest of trees.  We spent a lot of time building forts, eating sticky peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and navigating the trails that wound through the woods.

The main avenue into her woods was a wide and easy to follow trail that had been landscaped into the property. It was a large U shaped path that started on one side of the backyard and if you followed it completely around, would bring you right back to the grassy lawn behind the house. Continue reading

I Won’t Stay Silent!

Two weeks ago, I heard the heart-wrenching news that one of my former high school classmates had been shot and killed inside her Colorado home. Molly Nickal was just 35 years old. She left behind three beautiful children, the youngest a 3-month-old baby boy. Her husband, Gary Nickal, has been arrested on suspicion of first-degree murder.

As I read the news articles chronicling her tragic demise, it was very clear that this beautiful woman was a victim of domestic violence. According to an article in the Mankato Free Press, Molly’s family had been afraid for her because her husband was controlling, violent, and had isolated her from the rest of the family. Molly had even told one of her sisters that she felt like a prisoner in her own home. Continue reading

God Sees You

Have you ever wondered if God really sees you or cares about your circumstances?

There’s a beautiful story found in the gospel of Mark about a woman who suffered with an unfortunate medical condition. The condition caused her to bleed continually and she lived with this burden for twelve long years.  During this time, she spent all the money that she had visiting multiple doctors and undergoing numerous medical treatments.  However, instead of finding relief, her condition got worse.  Continue reading

Apple Blossoms

Staring out my living room window, I see a vibrant mix of magenta and green. The buds on my crab apple trees are bursting open to reveal delicate pink petals that wave and flutter gently with the breeze.  It’s a beautiful picture that dares me to believe that spring has finally sprung in Minnesota.

I love this time of year. Spring is a season that points to the promise of new life.  It reminds me that no matter how cold, dark, and bitter the winter may have been… there is warmth and new beginnings just around the corner.  Continue reading

The Gift Card

Last November, I was blessed with an unexpected gift card to one of my favorite restaurants.  I ALWAYS love an excuse to go out to eat.  If I don’t have to pay to go out?  Well, that’s even better.

So this was a very good surprise!

I couldn’t wait for the chance to use my new little plastic friend.

The more I thought about putting the card to use, the more enthused I got. Continue reading

Build A Dream

LORD, build a dream inside my heart. Let it be YOUR DREAM and not my own.

LORD, whisper YOUR PLANS into my mind.  I want to hear your voice, above all the other voices that clamor for my attention.

LORD, put a desire within my soul to SEEK YOU FIRST.  I know that you are the only one who can satisfy.

LORD, start a revolution in my home. A revolution that says WE BELONG TO THE KING!  We are His and He is ours.  And we WILL NOT BOW to any other name or any other throne.

LORD, put a passion on my lips. A passion to SPEAK THE TRUTH about who you are and the great things that you have done!

LORD, direct my steps. I want to GO WHEREVER YOU CALL me to go.

LORD, open my eyes.  Let me see the ways that you are at work all around.  Show me how I CAN PARTICIPATE in those good works.

LORD, build a dream inside my heart. Let it be your dream.

Oh that I could be part of building YOUR KINGDOM…

COME!

YOUR WILL be done.

On earth as it is in heaven.

Amen