Thursday, April 25, 2013

Why God Bottles Our Tears

At times I've wondered why the Psalmist wrote that Got puts all our tears in a bottle (Psalm 56:8). I thought about it again recently, as a hidden heartache caused fresh tears to flow.... Is He really collecting these, one by one, and--for what?

Suddenly I saw in mind's eye Queen Lucy of Narnia and her cordial. I saw her bending lovingly to pour it on battle wounds.

"If ...any of your friends are hurt, a few drops will restore them." 

That's when what I've already known came back in a new light: my tears are for healing others who shed tears. 

Can there be true ministry without pain? Can I "weep with those who weep" if I haven't first wept alone? And how much healing can I offer anyone if I haven't known hurt myself?

I don't know, can't know for sure, but I do wonder if this is why God is so fond of our tears. If this is why He saves every drop until such time for us to pour them out again.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

To Self-Doubters Everywhere

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Do you struggle with self-doubt? Does it take you by surprise when someone praises your work? And do you find yourself slipping back into uncertainty until the next encourager comes along, giving you enough assurance to propel your project another furlong toward your goal?

I can relate. It took several years, from conception to the bookshelves, to write my first book. It seemed that ninety percent of that time I thought, This is stupid and no one is going to want to read it.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Where to Find Idiots: Thoughts on Marriage and Church Relationships

I just finished Elaine Miller's book, We All Married Idiots, and discovered that, sure enough, she's right. David Bogdan married an idiot. Chances are good that you did, too.

Monday, April 15, 2013

So You Don't Have it All Together

Are you one of those who doesn't have it all together?

And do you have people in your life who seem to accentuate the fact when they come around? They don't have to say a word; you can see it in their eyes. You can feel the thoughts emanate from their skin like a stinky sweat: You're a loser. 

Friday, April 12, 2013

What Do You Do with Fifteen "Free Minutes?"

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The other night I was waiting for dinner to finish cooking and realized I had fifteen unspoken-for minutes to do with as I chose.

Monday, March 25, 2013

What on Earth Do You Do With the Resurrection? (Musings for a Skeptic)

I have often speculated about what kind of person I'd be had I not been raised in a Christian home. Here's what I'm pretty sure of:

Monday, March 18, 2013

How Do I "Do it All?"

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I've spent a lot of time pondering why many of us are too busy. I devoted two chapters in my book listing the reasons we do so much. But lately I've come to realize some of my assessment of people's hyperactivity has been uninformed and unfair; there's another, more noble reason some of us over-commit and over-do: there is simply no one else willing to do what needs to be done. At least, not in plain view.

Even though I'm presently trying to juggle being a wife, mother, homeschooler, housekeeper, minister, speaker and writer, I am also extremely tempted to take someone into our home for the simple reason that she has no place to go. Even though my husband and children are 100% on board with it, I know for a fact this would raise some eyebrows, shake some heads and wag some tongues. I can hardly blame anyone for feeling I need to have my brain extracted and rewired.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The Homeless Man in My House

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Last summer I took a homeless man into my home for an overnight stay. His stench followed him up the stairs where he steamed up my bathroom with a hot shower-- using my bath soap, wash cloth and towel.

Monday, February 18, 2013

My Visit to a Safe House for Girls of the Sex Slave Industry

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"Front door opening," announced the electronic voice as I entered the kitchen where *Shayla was busily preparing Valentine's candy for an upcoming banquet. I walked past the cubbies where girls hang their coats and studied her face for a moment.

"Do you like school?" I asked.

What else do you ask a sixteen-year-old who's spent most of her existence earning her keep from a pimp's bed?

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

On Being a Misfit and Loving Lesbians

photo credit: Gizmodo Shoes

I tossed and turned for a while in bed last night, thinking about what a misfit I am. How I don’t seem to fit neatly into any cultural corner: I’m eyed with suspicion by my gay friends when I profess to be a born again Christian. I’m eyed with suspicion by Christian friends when I confess to enjoying the company of my gay and very nonchristian friends.  And sometimes I'm painfully aware that  I do not belong in groups or events involving certain brands of people in pretty packaging with plasticky smiles and platitudes dabbed on saintly lips and—that is a good thing, actually. But it makes for a lonely existence at times.

Friday, January 25, 2013

The Skeptic Who Got "Struck Christian" (A Book Review)


I first discovered Joan Ball through a Facebook comment she made on someone's post that read something to this effect: "Not everyone is seeking. Not everyone feels a 'hole in their heart' and is longing for something more than the 'here and now.'"

Friday, January 4, 2013

The Eggnog Disaster and How it Saved My Daughter's Life

Recently a friend was describing to me one of her saddest childhood memories. Every day she’d come home from school to an empty house and relax on the couch in front of the TV for a while. Inevitably she’d hear the unmistakable sound of her dad’s footsteps approaching the front door. She’d jump up, turn off the TV, and try to look busy as he greeted her with the same three questions every day: