Browsing Category: Life

What’s the Recipe for a Perfect Christian?

The One Right Way to Chop an Onion

I know someone who chops an onion by peeling each layer, cutting off individual slices one-by-one, then laboriously dicing each slice into tiny cubes of onion, one at a time. It’s incredibly painful for me to watch—me who grabs the onion, cuts it in half, makes a few slices one way, a few the other and done.

Everyone seems to be searching for the “perfect” way to chop an onion, boil an egg, or grill a steak. There’s something so appealing about the idea that once you’re in on the secret or have mastered the technique, you can create something perfect, exactly as it should be.

Just as we all bring our own experiences and tastes to our cooking, we each come to our life in Christ as distinct and unique individuals

As much as I enjoy learning different tips and techniques for cooking, I just don’t buy it. There is no one right way to do anything in the kitchen. Prettier, faster, juicier, sweeter, easier, more tender—yes. Only one perfect way? No.

All cooks bring a different set of experiences, capabilities, preferences, and intentions to the preparation of their food. Some things we do because “that’s how mom always did it” and other things we pick up from fancy cookbooks or Pinterest; we also have different people we cook for and tastes to suit. We keep looking for the perfect way to prepare our food, but the perfect way will be a little different every time and for every person. Continue reading

My Mary Moment

This post is the second I’ve written on this passage; see here for my first post.

As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”

“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”

Luke 10:38-42

The group sat around in a small circle, wooden chairs pulled up between the couches. Through the small slit in the door I had cracked open, I could hear almost all that was said. I crouched at the top of the basement stairs, straining to hear a bit more.

It wasn’t always like this when my parents had their bible study group at our house. Often, I’d just lay in the basement with the TV on until the sound of shuffling feet and goodbyes told me that people were leaving. I could have come up sooner; I wasn’t banished to the basement. But I was in middle school and, honestly, usually not that interested.

This night was different, though. Continue reading

2017 Reading List

I used to love to read. My sister jokes that I spent my entire childhood lost in a book. Then adult life hit. I still love to read; I just haven’t been great about making time for it.

Well, I’m ready to get back into reading. One of the best ways I have found to reflect on life and faith is through reading the thoughts of others. I picked up The Spirit of the Disciplines by Dallas Willard earlier this year and couldn’t put it down.

It was an interesting, convicting, and revealing read. I’ll have much more to say about it throughout many of my posts, no doubt, so I won’t go into detail here, but suffice it to say, reading these wise and insightful words whet my appetite for seeking out other illuminating words.

So, I’ve gathered up a hodge podge of books—some that family and friends have recommended, some that I’ve started in the past but never finished, and some just because. This is certainly not a list of new bestsellers and exciting reads. Instead, it’s a smattering of various words and thoughts that I’d love to have in my head as I navigate life.  Here’s the list I’ve settled on to start me off: Continue reading

Autumn’s Embers

Each season brings its own unique beauty and delights, especially all the subtle changes in the in between. (I’ll be honest—the season of February through March in this region holds the fewest delights; if any of you have discovered those, let me in on the secret. Besides telling me to move to Texas. I already know that one.)

But this tail end of autumn has its own enchantments. I was back at my childhood home over Thanksgiving and got to tromp around the cold, muddy backyard, field, and woods around there with my girls. I love showing them all the little details of nature (and I’m glad that, at least so far, they enjoy it!). Continue reading

My Martha Moment

As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”

“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” 

Luke 10:38-42

That's a Bible, in case that wasn't obvious ;) There are lots of different ways that people seek and listen to Jesus, but I find reading and writing to be one of the best ways I can allow Him to speak His vision into my life.
That’s a Bible, in case that wasn’t obvious 😉 There are lots of different ways that people seek and listen to Jesus, but I find reading and writing to be one of the best ways I can allow Him to speak His vision into my life.

I know people serving as missionaries on distant islands. I have acquaintances teaching in inner city schools. My friends volunteer at an at-risk youth center in the city. I know people opening halfway houses, teaching in prisons, fostering children, and on and on and on. Continue reading

Why “A Snapdragon of the Field”?

I tell you, do not worry. Don’t worry about your life and what you will eat or drink. And don’t worry about your body and what you will wear. Isn’t there more to life than eating? Aren’t there more important things for the body than clothes? Look at the birds of the air. They don’t plant or gather crops. They don’t put away crops in storerooms. But your Father who is in heaven feeds them. Aren’t you worth much more than they are? Can you add even one hour to your life by worrying?
“And why do you worry about clothes? See how the wild flowers grow. They don’t work or make clothing. But here is what I tell you. Not even Solomon in all his royal robes was dressed like one of these flowers. If that is how God dresses the wild grass, won’t he dress you even better? Your faith is so small! After all, the grass is here only today. Tomorrow it is thrown into the fire. So don’t worry. Don’t say, ‘What will we eat?’ Or, ‘What will we drink?’ Or, ‘What will we wear?’ People who are ungodly run after all those things. Your Father who is in heaven knows that you need them. But put God’s kingdom first. Do what he wants you to do. Then all those things will also be given to you. So don’t worry about tomorrow. Tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Matthew 6:25-34 NIRV

Why a "snapdragon of the field"?

 

Okay, so snapdragons may not exactly be wildflowers, but they are my favorite flowers. Dimension, vivid color, textural interest. And the name! It’s got some life, some bite to it. I love it.* Continue reading

Phoenix of Seasons

It’s autumn—the time of year when the world bursts into flames. This time of year always make me think of the mythical phoenix. Fall is a fabulous glory of fiery color before everything settles into the char and ash of winter’s leafless trees and snow. But life will emerge again, a fledgling in spring growing into the vibrant, mature hues of summer, before succumbing yet again to the necessary autumnal demise of it’s natural life-cycle.

 

autumn1

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Mommy Blogs

When reading other mommy blogs, I often get the sense that the thought process behind starting a blog went something like this:

“Well! I certainly have it all together here! My laundry is all caught up, the dishwasher (and the sink!) are empty, dinner is in the crockpot, I can’t find any more dust bunnies and I am doing a FANTABULOUS job raising my kids right now, so—ya’know what? I better start a blog so I can help other women have it all together, too!!!”

If that is you, I really am not criticizing. My hat is off to you and I am so pleased for you that you’re in that situation. It’s a great feeling, I am sure—I’ve just never experienced it. But based on the high I get from occasionally accomplishing just one of those tasks, I’m sure you do feel great and I appreciate your willingness to share.

However, that is not me, not at all. Not even close. Just ask my mom (who is a pretty awesome homemaker and housekeeper).

mommyblogs1
And yes, these are real dishes in my real sink. Pretty, bright colors but dirty nonetheless. I am in constant awe of the number of dirty dishes we can create in a day…

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