the bittersweet road home

By | change, choosing, courage, devotional, failure, God, home, spiritual disciplines, Suffering | No Comments

Meanwhile the disciples were urging him, saying, “Rabbi, eat.”  But he said to them, “I have food to eat that you do not know about.”  So the disciples said to one another, “Has anyone brought him something to eat?” Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to accomplish his work.” -John 4:31-34 I sat in the car watching the scenery of the southwest speed by…

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(Some of) My Favorite Etsy Shops

By | beauty, Christmas, design, home, house, social media, style | No Comments

Last week I stopped into one of my favorite shops in Austin, Vintage Fresh, and noticed that some of their wooden wall art was made by a company called Hemlock and Heather. I recognized the name because several years ago, Hemlock and Heather was just a little Etsy shop and they made my headboard after our bedroom flooded. Now their art is in West Elm. Go figure. Etsy is the only place something like that…

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the importance of hospitality

By | article, God, gospel mama, home, hope, house | No Comments

Too much. Too much on the calendar, too much to do, too much to remember. Too many. Too many plates spinning, too many people needing, too many crises in the world. Not enough. Not enough time, not enough energy, not enough me. If that doesn’t sum up the predicament we are in these days, I don’t know what does. My “baby” has turned seven, and when she asked how we should celebrate, I suggested we…

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losing jesus

By | article, faith, fear, home | No Comments

A few summers ago, our family did a whirlwind four days at Disneyworld. Doing Disney with four children under seven means several things will happen. First, it means there will be at least one miserable person in your party at all times. It may be the kid who is too small to ride Space Mountain. Or possibly the child lying on the filthy floor of a public bathroom because he is “starving” and “dying of…

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homelessness and belonging and the ache for more

By | a year on the front row, article, gospel, home | One Comment

In between church services yesterday, I strolled through the lobby in search of coffee. Sitting in their usual spot on the sofas near the bookcases was the group of homeless men who come every week. I waved, then walked over to say good morning. These kinds of conversations are always a little awkward for me. Despite being married to a pastor, and therefore frequently chatting with people I don’t know very well, I am terrible…

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what’s the worst thing that could happen?

By | article, fear, home, lessons in life, Suffering | No Comments

There seem to be so many awful things that happen in the world. What if we’re next? That’s the trap, isn’t it? That fear hisses out from the small offenses, the minor losses, and the non-life threatening horrors we must endure. It’s also the disquieting hum vibrating out of nightmares that come true and tragedies that break hearts and lives. It’s often unbearable. But what if the worst is behind us? Sometimes I look at…

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a journey of belonging

By | article, family, home | No Comments

my brother and me on a family roadtrip 1980 As a child, my family drove from the cool California coast to the hot red dirt of Oklahoma every summer. My father’s grandparents lived there, raising cattle and cotton all their lives until eternity called them home to Jesus in my early adolescence. My parents wanted us to know the hot sun on our faces as we fed the cattle and the taste of grape soda…

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a good passover for homesick souls

By | article, home | No Comments

Last week, I hiked up California hills, ocean breezes welcomed me with the scent of eucalyptus trees and fresh cut lawns, and I was happy, happy, happy down in my soul. I saw my old elementary school bus stop, the front doors I knocked on a million times to ask friends to come out and play, and the sidewalk where I once left my footprints in wet cement in the early 1980s. I was home….

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when motherhood means messy gratitude and building your true home

By | article, home, momhood | 2 Comments

The moon hung itself high above Austin when a little eight year-old boy crawled in my bed Friday. The stillness of 4 am lay on our house like the comfort of an old friend, finally come home. “I can’t sleep,” was all he said. I made space for him and settled myself into a new, cooler section of the sheets. The fan whirred gently overhead and all was peaceful, but even so, I couldn’t get…

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how a pastor’s wife talked about heaven with her children

By | article, dreams, faith, home | One Comment

On an ordinary afternoon last week, I was driving my kiddos home from Target and one of them asked a question about heaven. “Mom, do you think we will get bored in heaven, if we’re just singing and praising God forever?” I began to explain that our home beyond this world would be more than that. Eternity will be different than our world here, and we will be different too. It’s hard to imagine what…

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