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Christmas: Adoption in Reverse

Christmas: Adoption in Reverse

Can we find adoption in the Christmas story? At first glance, that seems like a stretch. But then again, if we pause long enough and dig deep enough, we might just find it there. After all, didn’t Jesus come to heal the hurting? To restore the broken? To seek and save the lost? (Luke 4:8; Luke 19:10) Surely if we look closely we can find messages of hope for the adopted, and the adopters. The Christmas story actually is an…

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Adoption Awareness Month: What I Wish the Church Knew About The Real Scriptural Meaning of “Visiting the Orphan”

Adoption Awareness Month: What I Wish the Church Knew About The Real Scriptural Meaning of “Visiting the Orphan”

I had read James 1:27 numerous times before realizing: all I had to do was “visit” the orphans. I didn’t really have to bring all their brokenness and it’s fallout into my personal space. Did I? So as I pondered National Adoption Month and what to write, I thought maybe I should dig a little into Scripture to help discern what this all really means. “Religion” in this passage is generally understood to mean “worship”—a natural overflow of love in…

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Sometimes Halloween Creeps Me Out

Sometimes Halloween Creeps Me Out

I hope this doesn’t sound like a rant. Just an acknowledgement of where I’m at. I’m not interested in swaying anyone into my way of thinking. (Actually, that’s probably not true. Otherwise I wouldn’t be writing sharing my thoughts with you. What is true is that I’m not interested in arguing about a topic that has been debated for decades without resolution.) What I’m wondering is … How can I feel more enthused about Halloween this year? Or should I?…

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Limited by Finite Compassion

Limited by Finite Compassion

I’m struggling y’all. A month ago I wrote on Facebook, “Here we are at September already. Wasn’t August a doozy? Muscle-showing between the US and North Korea. Racism and riots in the east. Hurricane Harvey in the south. Drought and fires in the west.” I had hoped September would be better, but it was not. Two more hurricanes, an earthquake in Mexico, and October started with a mass shooting, the threat of another storm brewing in the Gulf of Mexico,…

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It’s Cross-Country Season. Four Tips for Running Well?

It’s Cross-Country Season. Four Tips for Running Well?

A few weeks ago Bob told me about the dream he’d had the night before. We were trying to leave for a trip and he was being slowed down by a myriad of obstacles, including a pool of ice cream. WHAT??? Have you had those sorts of dreams—where you are trying to go somewhere or get a job done, and a thousand things (even good things) keep slowing you down and tripping you up? That’s not a dream, you say. Welcome…

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Do You Have a Pied Piper in Your Pocket?

Do You Have a Pied Piper in Your Pocket?

“What is the greatest challenge facing young moms today?“ I asked this of mommy-blogger Leah Heffner who writes over at Life Around the Coffee Cup. She was actually interviewing me for her soon-to-be-released podcast series, but she offered me an opportunity to ask her a question. It’s been a while since I had children at home and I was curious what weighs today’s mommies down. In about two seconds she said exactly what I thought she might. Young moms today,…

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Was I a Racist in My Own Home?

Was I a Racist in My Own Home?

Do you see yourself as a racist? Probably not. You certainly hope not. Right? Me too. You know I’m probably going to say something like “we are more racist than we like to think.” Yep, I am. But then, if we’re honest, that’s no surprise. Don’t we all prefer to hang with people just like us? People who look, talk, and smell the ways we prefer. But that’s not really being racist, is it? The problem comes when we want…

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My Tongue Needed a Fire Escape

My Tongue Needed a Fire Escape

I have a confession to make. Believe me, it’s not an easy confession. It’s confession of a sin I’ve never heard other moms confess—which leads me to think I was a really, really bad mom. Can you tell how hesitant I am to admit it? But in learning to deal with this horrible habit, I learned a very important lesson I’d like to share with you. My confession: I used to swear at my kids. (Cringe.) Because I still feel…

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Souvenirs for the Soul: When You Have to Stay Home

Souvenirs for the Soul: When You Have to Stay Home

I wanted to go! Oh, I wanted to go. But the Lord said, “No. Not yet. Not this year.” It was the summer before my junior year of college. My church denomination offered a summer missions program for college juniors and seniors. I so wanted to sign up and see where I might find myself for ten weeks. I did get to go the next year, to Anchorage, Alaska. But for the summer of 1983, the Lord told me to…

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Souvenirs for the Soul: The Testimony of God Shows Up in Unexpected Places

Souvenirs for the Soul: The Testimony of God Shows Up in Unexpected Places

In my pre-waking moments, I thought I was on a subway again. I’d been in the country only a few days, and with my group of journeymen missionaries had ridden several trains and subways, touring the city as we acclimated to the culture. Awakened long before my alarm rang, I thought someone was shaking my bed. My eyes rolled open to realize my bed was indeed shaking though no one was near it. I sat straight up wondering, “Is this…

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