Bless my home, Lord




Today, as we end this six week study, I want to invite you to do something that might seem. . . well, out of the ordinary.

I want to invite you to bless your home.

Sounds odd, right?

And yet our homes are sacred places. 
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It’s time for change


You know it’s time to change.

But it’s hard. 

What if you fail?

What if you don’t measure up?

What if. . .  

There’s a thousand what-ifs as we unpack the past and walk into the new.

But let’s look at the other what ifs. [Read more...]

Week #6 – Unpack your parenting baggage


We were driving down the highway.

I saw a shoe. Then a couple of shirts.

A sock.

Scattered for nearly a mile where all kinds of clothing, a second shoe, a few pair of unmentionables.

Finally, an overturned, half-open, battered and broken piece of luggage resting on the side of the road.

That scattering of clothes down the highway reminds me of my journey to unpack the past. 

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What I hope they remember


A few years ago I attended a funeral. As each grown child spoke about their mother, I leaned in to listen. I’m fascinated by the memories left on a child’s heart, and I waited to hear their special memories.

One recounted how his mom always looked nice. “Her purse and shoes always matched,” he said. “She never went out of the house without her lipstick.”

Another told a story of how their home was perfect. “Not a thing out of place,” he shared.

The last child said that every time she smelled PineSol™ it reminded her of her mother.

Later, as I drove home, I wondered what my children’s memories would one day be. . . and I prayed it wouldn’t be my shoes, my perfect home, or the sweet smell of PineSol™.

Hear my heart, it’s not that I’m saying this wasn’t a great mom, because she most likely was amazing.

It’s just sometimes we can get so tangled up in what we do as moms, that we might forget the power of the littlest things that create lasting memories, like: [Read more...]

Start your work in me, Lord

god-loves-you-because (1)

Has it been one of those days?

You know, a discouraging day.

A day when you reacted different than you promised you would.

A day when you considered, if only for a moment, to stop trying.

A day when you love your kids, but you don’t like them very much.

Am I the only one who has had one of those days?

[Read more...]

We all want to know what to expect


I love roller coasters. I love how my stomach clenches when I start to go over the rise and how the wind whooshes when I fly over.

But I don’t like emotional roller coasters.

Neither do our children.

Knowing what to expect helps family become a safe place.  [Read more...]

Week #5: What I don’t want to do to my kids


Before I had children, I had a Good Mom list. It read something like this:

  • When I become a mother, I will not ignore my children.
  • When I become a mother, I will not physically harm my children.
  • When I become a mother, I will not scream or yell.
  • When I become a mother, I will never humiliate my child.

It was all the things I promised I’d never do to my children. [Read more...]

My Risk: Breaking the stereotype



I hate mother-in-law jokes.

But let’s be honest, there’s not a manual that tells us how to be a good mother-in-law.

And it can be tricky. 

But this is where I wanted to be a risk taker.

I wanted to break the stereotype of the word mother-in-law. I didn’t want to be a bad joke.

I wanted to take the risk, not just to do it, but because there were people I love involved, and it mattered.

My first risk was to embrace the new.

The old way is comfortable, but my way isn’t always the best way. It’s definitely not the only way. I decided to hold our traditions and way of doing things a little less sacred.

What makes anything sacred are the memories involved, right?

Embracing the new allowed us to make new memories together as a family.

My second risk was to hold loosely.

When you’ve been a mom for 21+ years, you’ve been used to giving advice. Used to Sunday dinners, or Christmas around your tree. You treasure the one-to-one conversations, and time with your child.

Now you’re sharing them with someone else. Lots of someone else’s as you include their spouse’s family.

Holding loosely might feel like strange at first, but holding tightly allows no room for growth in an adult relationship. I discovered something incredible as I opened my hands in my relationships with my adult children:

Holding loosely allows them to come freely.

Holding tightly might look like this:

Giving advice where it’s not needed.

Pushing in too close when a couple needs space to define what their family is going to look like.

Questioning their choices.

Being jealous of a relationship because you feel that they’ve taken the place you used to hold.

Holding loosely is:

Waiting to share advice when they come to you.

Giving space for the new relationship to flourish, and finding that there’s still lots of room for you in there, too.

Trusting their choices, and if they are wrong, letting them learn through them just like you did.

I wish that I could say that I do these things perfectly, but I’m not a perfect anything.

But this is what the word mother-in-law looks like to me. It’s family. It’s discovering that you can love beyond borders.

It’s what makes this girl happy.



I love this picture because it wasn’t supposed to look like this. It was a last minute squeeze by my son (the tall guy in the back) that just happened to be caught on camera.

But if I could describe my journey as a risk taker, this just might be the image.

I never know exactly what it’s going to look like as a risk taker. I’m not even certain it will all work out.

But then there are those sweet moments when you just happen to get a glimpse that it’s messy and fun and totally worth the risk.