Words of Encouragement

Honoring the Season

Autumn is so delicious.  Everything about it makes me happy: chill in the air, gorgeous shades of oranges and reds, the sound of the leaves rustling in the wind or crunching underfoot, the smell of the fire pit, and of course, pumpkin flavored everything!

Just as we are to embrace each season as they come, we also need to recognize that we were never meant to stay in the same season forever.

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The Moment It All Changed

Thirty years ago today the trajectory of my life changed forever.

One moment I was a healthy, happy seven-year-old running around our new house playing with friends, and the next I was being rushed to the hospital.  I don’t remember much about that day.  More like flashes really.  I remember collapsing in the first hospital, waking up briefly in the second hospital, and then nothing until the next day when I woke up in the third hospital paralyzed on my right side.

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Hope That Anchors the Soul

It’s been almost two years ago now that I sat in my counselor’s office sobbing uncontrollably.  She looked across the empty space between us and simply asked, “Do you have hope?”  I shook my head no.  I have no idea what she said after that.  It’s hard to hear anything when you are in a pit of despair and a storm is raging.

With some reservations I want share something with you.  I suffer from OCD.  Not the funny “haha I like everything in it’s place” OCD.  I suffer from crippling Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder.  I hear people joke all the time about their “OCD kicking in”; however for those who truly struggle with this disorder, it is not a joke.

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Silence

Silence.

Not a word has flowed through these fingers onto this blog for over 18 months. Not because I don’t have anything to say…those who know me well know that I always have something to say.  Not a word have I typed because The Father has wooed me into the wilderness so that we can be alone…in the quiet…so that I can listen.

A friend once asked me what I liked to read.  I told her I didn’t read much.  She said, “But you are a writer!” I said, “Exactly!  I am a writer not a reader.  Just like I am a talker and not a listener.”  We all had a good laugh.  But looking back, I must have sounded so arrogant and immature.

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Lessons Learned from My Adult Ed. Students

What an amazing journey I had this past year!  I was given the honor to teach a group of Hispanic parents in the Springdale Family Literacy Program.  Monday-Thursday these women (and one gentleman) showed up to my little cottage outside an elementary school with one motivation…providing a better life for their families.

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Be True, Be You {And Special Giveaway}

Y’all, I am so excited to share with you one of my most precious blogging friends, Katie Reid. I introduced you to her back in the Fall when we met in real life.  We met through the Five Minute Friday Community.  She has been one of my biggest online cheerleaders.  Katie has helped me get over a lot of my insecurities of writing by inviting me to guest blog on two of her blog series.  I honestly don’t think I would still be here without her encouragement!

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For When You Are in a Holding Pattern

Ten years ago this spring, Michael and I visited our Pastor’s office for several sessions of pre-marital counseling.  Some things were very helpful. Most topics were very awkward as you can imagine.  We discussed finances, family history, goals…and intimacy. Yikes!

We had only been dating for a few months. These counseling sessions were revealing things that had not come up in the short time we had known each other.

I distinctly remember Pastor asking, “Where do you see yourself in ten years?” My knee jerk response was, “Published.”

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Burnt Toast or the Bread of Life

“Give us today our daily bread.” Matthew 6:11

It is morning. I am checking off tasks on my morning routine “to do” list.

  • Shower. Check.
  • Dress kids. Check.
  • Start breakfast. Toast in the toaster oven. Check and check.
  • Fill sippys. Check.
  • Say our goodbyes to Daddy as he heads out the door for work. Check.
  • Empty dishwasher. Fill dishwasher. Check and check.

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One Word 2015: Yield

This is the third year that I have thrown all New Year’s Resolutions out the window and replaced it with a “one word” focus.  Some people choose a word to help set goals for the year. Sometimes the word chooses you. My words have always chosen me.  I feel they reflected what the LORD was actively doing in my heart or wanted to teach me.

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