As Americans we’re taught that being independent is a great value. And in some ways it is. It is important to grow up and become an adult and take care of yourself.

However, the Bible teaches us that God made us to be dependent. We depend on Jesus for our salvation and we depend on the Holy Spirit for our sanctification. Not only that, but we know that the triune God — Father, Son, and Spirit — are social. Part of us being made in His image is that we are social beings.

The Bible also teaches about the church and our community within the church. Over 50 times the Bible gives us a “one another” command. For example John 15:17, “This I command to you, that you love one another.” and Galatians 6:2, “Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.” (emphasis added) We’re also told to rejoice with those who rejoice and morn with those who morn. The Bible commands us to live in community.

I’ve lived in Utah for almost 10 years now. Ten years of adult life without any family nearby or long-time friends. I’ve learned to just get things done. My handsome husband is a hard worker and has faithfully provided for our family. But, he works full-time, and I can’t ask him to help me with everything that comes up. When I’m sick and the kids are sick, we muddle through. When my back starts acting up, the kids get to watch a lot of TV and I drive around in pain. Date nights were at a minimum (babysitters are expensive, and we don’t pay ours enough!) As the kids have gotten older, it’s gotten easier, but I’ve gotten really good at being on my own and just figuring it out.

Last month my parents were visiting for an extended period of time. We all arrived in Utah on the 18th (after quite the road trip) and on the 19th I strained my calf muscle so badly that I couldn’t walk. I woke up on the 20th and as my husband left for work he encouraged me to call my mom so that she could help me. I was hesitant. My parents had been stuck in the car with myself and my children for days and I wanted to give them a break. So, I hesitated to ask my parents for help. MY PARENTS. The people who gave me life, fed me, clothed me, wiped my bottom, paid for my college, the people who love me selflessly and unconditionally. I know that may not be true for all people, but it’s true for me. My parents love me. And without my asking, they came over. My mom watched my kids and my dad took me to the doctor. I was helpless, and they helped me.

But what struck me was not only that I was hesitant to ask for help, but I was hesitant to ask my parents. In the 10 years I’d lived in Utah, I had become so independent, that I didn’t even want to ask my parents for help. This is not OK. This is pride. When we’re not willing to live in community and ask for help, we’re being prideful. In Utah, there are a lot of people who don’t have family nearby. We, as the church, need to be family for one another. This means that we not only need to be willing to ask for help, but we also need to be willing to be inconvenienced and offer help whenever possible.

I’m very blessed. After almost 10 years, we’ve made some good friends and have attended churches where other people have been willing to be inconvenienced for my sake, for the sake of the body of Christ they have practiced the “one anothers” and been hands and feet to me.

Thank you Jesus, for creating us to live in community. Lord, humble me and give me willingness to ask and receive help when I need it. And give me a heart that leaps at the opportunity to help others.

Published in: on September 13, 2015 at 9:49 pm  Leave a Comment  

Crazy Busy by Kevin DeYoung

I don’t consider myself a super busy person. I don’t like feeling busy and overwhelmed. In fact, I can be selfish with my time. This past school year was amazing. My older kids were in school, and I had the pleasure of just living life for my baby, who took really good naps. So, it was a slow-paced year. One in which I had a lot of time to get things done and enjoy down-time.

However, this summer has felt extremely busy. Even just having my two kids at home all day, makes life busier. And God has worked in my heart, and opened my eyes to being more willing to make sacrifices in my life and with my time for other women. So, in thinking about the school year starting and with it different ministries within the church, reading Crazy Busy by Kevin DeYoung was a good preparation.

For my own sake, the following are quotes from the book:

  • “We wake up most days not trying to serve, but trying to survive.” pg 21                                                      
  • “For most of us, it isn’t heresy or rank apostasy that will derail our profession of faith. It’s all the worries of life. You’ve got car repairs. then your water heater goes out. The kids need to see a doctor. You haven’t done your taxes yet….Your lawn needs mowing. Your curtains don’t look right. Your washing machine keeps rattling. This is life for most of us, and it’s choking our spiritual life.” pg. 29
  • “John Piper made the statement, ‘we should care about all suffering…’ …He didn’t want to say we should do something about all suffering, because we can’t do something about everything. But we can care. We won’t all care about every issue in the same way, but there are some issues we should all care about… “Every Christian should be involved in the Great Commission, but not everyone will move overseas. Every Christian should oppose abortion, but not everyone will adopt or volunteer at a crisis pregnancy center. … And we need Christians who don’t make others feel guilty (and don’t feel guilty themselves) when one of us follows a different passion than another.” pg 49
  • “I worry that many young parents are too sure that every decision will set their kids on a an unalterable trajectory to heaven or hell. It’s like my secretary at church once told me: ‘Most moms and dads think they are either the best or the worst parents in the world, and both are wrong.’ Could it be we’ve made parenting too complicated? Isn’t the most important thing now what we do but who we are as parents? They will remember our character before they remember our exact rules regarding television and Twinkies.” pg 73
  • “…it’s easy to think the best answer for technology overload is to rage against the machines. And yet, it does no good to pine for a world that isn’t coming back and probably wasn’t as rosy as we remember it. I like that I can carry the Bible on my phone, …  and can hear from my friends throughout the day, and can text with my wife while I’m at work. There’s no doubt that some things are better because we are all wired to everything.The question is what are the threats [that the digital revolution has to our souls] and what can we do about them?” pg 79
  • “The busyness that’s bad is not the busyness of work, but the busyness that works hard at the wrong things. It’s being busy trying to please people, busy trying to control others, busy trying to do things we haven’t been called to do.So please don’t hear from me that work is bad or that bearing burdens is bad. That’s part of life. That’s part of being a Christian. pg 102
  • “God has given us all twenty-four hours in every day. It is the one resource distributed with complete equality. And for most of us, for the most part, we all do with those hours what we think is most important. I wish I ran more, but apparently I value reading at home, or working late, or getting sleep more. So the answer here is not simple willpower: “I must spend more time with Jesus!” That won’t last. We have to believe that the most significant opportunity before us every day is the opportunity to sit at the feet of Jesus. We won’t rearrange our priorities unless we really believe this is the best one.” pg 114-115
  • “It’s not wrong to be tired. It’s not wrong to feel overwhelmed. It’s not wrong to go through seasons of complete chaos. What is wrong-and heartbreakingly foolish and wonderfully avoidable-is to live a life with more craziness than we want because we have less Jesus than we need.” pg 118

DeYoung always offers a fair and balanced view on things and I really appreciated this book. I want to offer my life to others and be more available to serve Christ by serving them, this includes my husband and children. However, this can only start by reorienting my time around Jesus. It made me realize that I’m not just selfish with my time when it comes to people, but also when it comes to Jesus. Hopefully, God will continue to reprioritize my desires.  

Published in: on August 11, 2015 at 1:08 pm  Leave a Comment  

Journal July 28



“To all those in Rome who are loved by God and called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.”

Do you consider yourself a Christian?


If so, are you called to be a saint?


Therefore what does this verse tell you?

I am loved by God.

I am loved by God.

I am loved by God.

Published in: on July 28, 2015 at 5:48 pm  Leave a Comment  

Journal July 22


2 PETER 1:3-11

*His divine power has given us


Everything we need


for life and godliness


through out knowledge of him


the one who called us by his own glory and goodness.

*Through these


grace and goodness

he has given us


his very great and precious promises


so that through them


the great and precious promises


the divine nature

and escape


The curruption


in the world.

caused by


Evil desires

*For this very reason


that we have been given what we need to participate in divine nature and escape corruption.

make every effort


to add to your faith goodness

(to your) goodness, knowledge

(to your) knowledge self-control

(to your) self-control, perseverance

(to your) preseverance, godliness

(to your) godliness, brotherly kindness

and (to your) brotherly kindness love

*For if you posess these qualities


faith, goodness, knowledge, sefl-control, perserverance, godliness, kindess and love in increasing measure, they will keep you from


from being ineffective and unproductive


in your knowledge


of our Lord Jesus Christ

*Bur if anyone does not have them


faith, goodness, knowledge, self-control, godliness, kindness and love

he is


nearsighted and blind and has forgotten


that he has been cleansed from


his past sins

*Therefore , my brothers,


Because if you don’t you’ll be nearsighted forgetting what Christ has done

be all the more eager


to make your calling and election sure.

*For if you do these things


make your calling and election sure


By adding faith, goodness, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, kindness, and love

you will never fall

and you will receive


a rich welcome


Into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Published in: on July 22, 2015 at 5:51 pm  Leave a Comment  

Journal June 29


PSALM 5:1-3

“Give ear to my words, O LORD, consider my sighing. Listen to my cry for help, my King and my God, for to youI pray. In the morning, O LORD, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation.”

Published in: on June 29, 2015 at 5:51 pm  Leave a Comment  

Journal June 28


1 PETER 2:11

“Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul.”

*Satan uses body image issues to hinder us in the work of the kingdom.

Published in: on June 28, 2015 at 5:52 pm  Leave a Comment  

Summer Mom

We’ve all seen Jen Hatchmakers post, “Worst End of School Year Mom Ever.” In fact I’m sure this is at least the second year that I have giggled through the post. We all laugh, because we know it’s true. We start off the school year with exuberance and we do everything well, but by May we’re tired. I’m tired. I’m tired of waking up early and making lunches and shuffling kids out the door. I’m tired of daily reading fluency and other homework. I’m tired of volunteering and after school activities. But, I have to admit, I enjoy my peace and quiet time. My time alone, at home. I’m an introvert and even though I still have a baby at home, well… she takes good naps!

So here is summer, it’s coming, it’s around the corner, one more week of school. And I’m excited about it… and dreading it. I never wanted to be the type of parent who dreaded summer with her kids. I love my kids. My kids are a blessing. I have prayed for each and every one of them. There are women out there who long for children… and I’m lucky enough to have three. I am so thankful that God has given them to me. There is nothing in the world like having a front seat ticket to watching a person grow, learn, explore, and develop. They’re amazing! Each one is different and unique and I cherish my time with them.

But, I know myself, the worst of me. I’m a selfish person. I like “me-time.” I don’t like answering 100 questions, whining, or fighting. I know I have a short fuse and sin in my anger. I yell and snap at my kids when I shouldn’t. I’m not creative and I’m a total home-body.

So, as I think of the encroaching summer today, I want to pray.

Lord, thank you for my children. All too often I take them for granted. They are a gift from you and I love them more than I can express. As I enter into summer, help me to be a good mom to them. Give me strength and lots and lots of energy. Give us fun stuff to do. Help me to make this summer one that is filled with happy, carefree, childhood memories for my kids. Give me patience and wisdom. Help me to be slow to anger and quick to listen. Give my children tender hearts for their siblings. Grow a bond and friendship between them that will last into adulthood. Protect my children from evils in the world. Protect their ears from words they should not hear, hurtful comments from neighborhood kids, and even anger from me. Protect their eyes from things they should not see and their hearts from things they should not learn. Keep them safe from danger, and please Lord, no more broken bones this year! Lord Jesus, shine through me into their lives. Help me to use my time with them wisely. Help me to be a good example to them. Help me to slow down and point out your amazing creation, to marvel at cloud shapes, the beauty of a sunset, or the fragrance of flowers. Humble me so that I can serve them well. Give me wisdom to disciple them through fights and fun. Give me patience. Give me energy. Continue to give me an overwhelming love for my children. Lord, I cannot do these things on my own. I am desperately dependent on you. Thank you, Lord. Thank you for my beautiful, amazing, smart, funny, crazy, kids. Thank you for letting me be their mom. Thank you for summer. Thank you for grace. Amen.

Published in: on June 5, 2015 at 11:01 am  Leave a Comment  

Journal May 30


1 PETER 4:7

“The end of all things is at hand; therefore be self-controlled and sober-minded for the sake of your prayers.”

Published in: on May 30, 2015 at 5:52 pm  Leave a Comment  

Journal April 29



Thank God for dirty dishes’

They have a tale to tell.

While others may go hungry,

We’re eating very well.

With home, health and happiness, I shouldn’t want to fuss;

By the stack of evidence God’s been good to us.

-Author Unknown

Published in: on April 29, 2015 at 5:52 pm  Leave a Comment  

A New Kind of Legalism

What do you think of when you think of legalism? I think of self-righteous people who look down on others for *gasp* drinking beer, or dancing, or playing cards, or… I think of people who look down on a woman who has a sexual past because they can’t seem to understand that the broken woman is a new creation in Christ. To me, these issues seem to be a thing of the past. I don’t live in the Bible belt, so I assume this problem still exists. However, I am surrounded by amazing believers who understand the grace of the Bible. We’re all gross and disgusting sinners. How dare I look down on a sister for her sexual past when bitterness has stripped joy from my life in years past?

However, it seems like there’s a new wave of legalism out there. It’s not about looking down on people for the bad things or sins that they are/were caught up in, but rather it’s about judging others because they’re not DOING something. (And that something is specifically tied to whatever the person is passionate about.) Don’t get me wrong, as Christians we SHOULD be loving others. However, there’s a movement of restless people who think, “If you’re not adopting/working to end human trafficking/feeding the hungry in third world countries/etc. then there’s something lacking in your Christian faith.” or “Look at me, look at what I am doing/did for the gospel, what are you doing?” It’s a haughty, self-righteous attitude.

There are a handful of new books floating around that have changed people’s lives and have spurred them to do amazing things for the gospel. But these same books are fostering this attitude of self-righteousness. They spurn middle-class life and basically say there are no excuses for not doing what they promote as a worthy cause. This is a new burden placed on believers.

Here’s the thing though. Outsiders don’t necessarily know what’s going on within the family. What about…

  • the family who is strategically sharing the gospel with their middle class neighbors
  • the family that provides bread and milk for the less fortunate down the street
  • the family that gives up autonomous life and works to support and live with a disabled family member
  • the family that fosters children
  • the wife who’s desire is to serve others more, but needs to submit to her unbelieving, or less mature husband
  • the family that sacrifices family time for misc ministry purposes
  • the family that still lives well but donates 1/2 their income
  • the woman who cleans the church weekly
  • the man who is faithful to stack chairs, etc.

The point is, is that sometimes the Christian life does not call people to travel to a foreign country, adopt a child, or even evangelize on the street. Sometimes the Christian life calls people to labor where they are, for the people already in their circle of acquaintance. They are called to do the invisible jobs. The Bible calls us to live in such a way where the right hand doesn’t know what the left hand is doing. So, if you are a disciple of Christ who has been called to something public (like adoption, I mean, it’s really hard to keep that secret) that’s AWESOME! But don’t become self-righteous and look down on others who don’t have a heart for [enter your passion here]. Assume the best of your brothers and sisters in Christ. God has (or will) more than likely burdened their hearts with something, but you may never hear about it. It may be something that is only between them and God and you will never know of the sacrifice they have given.

Let’s get rid of the old legalism and let’s get rid of the new legalism. Let’s get rid of this, “What are YOU doing?” mentality and remember that the Christian life is often about doing, in that by doing we’re loving others, but it’s also about being; simply resting in who Christ is and what He has done. I don’t HAVE to DO because of what He has DONE. And the only reason we DO (read love) is because I am FIRST loved. Don’t be impatient with those who are behind you on this amazing road of Christ. Meet them where THEY are but keep in mind, they might be ahead of you because of the secret sacrifices they’ve made that you’ll never know about.

Published in: on March 31, 2015 at 9:44 pm  Leave a Comment