growth Posts

Why I Gave Up Makeup for Lent

Why I Gave Up Makeup for Lent

Several years ago, my family and I had set out on a brief weekend trip to visit my extended family in Reno. Having been in Texas for my grandmother’s memorial service the week prior when Lent began, I wasn’t in the frame of mind to tackle something to give up. The time with family to honor my grandmother was rich and bittersweet; I was still emotionally raw.

Downsizing Christmas

Downsizing Christmas

I’m no humbug, but I have to admit that I occasionally have trouble enjoying Christmas.

I’ll admit changing the station when “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year” croons from the radio, as sometimes it just makes me angry.

For our family, December is often one of the hardest months. All the pressures of gifts, coupled with illness, together with the fact that I’m married to a high school basketball coach make the holiday season a bit of a trial for me.

My Jewel [Poem]

My Jewel [Poem]

The past may hold us,
the future may change us,
yet something binds,
it holds and secures—

Memories, old and new,
combine to seal
and hold tight the grip—
the years cement.

Impossible Christmas Joy

Impossible Christmas Joy

Christmas is a complicated season. At the surface, the media sends us the message that it is the “most wonderful time of year” filled with candy canes, happy smiling children, blissful mall shopping, and of course, argument-free family gatherings and copious amounts of leisure time. It’s tough to stomach this rosy view of the holiday season in light of how it makes many of us feel.

This time of year brings with it a mountain of additional stress no matter who you are, but especially for ministry leaders.

The Tension of Motherhood

The Tension of Motherhood

There are lots of different “zones” in life, but the zone of motherhood—with all its different ages and stages—is one zone that can never be completely outgrown. Once you’ve become a mother, it’s always a part of you.  I really love being a mom with all its ups and downs, exhaustion, joys, and tender moments, however, there is an ongoing tension between the call of motherhood and the call of vocation.

Bud [Poem]

Bud [Poem]

Opening, pushing through
budding, birthing
the cold has done
its work.

Growth under surface
harboring, planning
then release.

Gift of You [Poem]

Gift of You [Poem]

Few things in life can fully capture the impact a loved one can have on us. For me, my grandparents held a very special place in my heart as they were instrumental in my life from the time I was born. While both my grandfathers passed away many years ago, the first of my two cherished grandmothers passed away last week.

After Job Loss and Brain Surgery

After Job Loss and Brain Surgery

Having just undergone my sixth surgery, clearly I’m qualified to write about the healing process. My first taste of major surgery was thrust on me at the youthful age of 25, and it was brain surgery at that.

‘Pink Ladies’ Form Friendship Late in Life

‘Pink Ladies’ Form Friendship Late in Life

It’s never too late to make a new friend, or to visit someone you love and make lasting memories, or so I learned. It might seem that by the time you’ve landed in a senior residence facility you might have made all the friends you’re going to make in this life. But this wasn’t true for Elaine and Betty, who met eight years ago when they moved next door to one another at Brookdale-Arlington (formerly Town Village), a senior living community, in Arlington, Texas.

Forever Changed

Forever Changed

Written for my sister when she had her first child, this poem captures – for me – the incredible change I felt when I became a mother for the first time:

Perfect feet, curled in position
Newborn smell, you capture me.

Growing Through Failure in the New Year

Growing Through Failure in the New Year

Here we are at another year, the clock still ticks onward, seconds lead to minutes, which add up to hours, days and weeks. Although most of civilization aims to focus on accomplishments and goals for the New Year, how would it look differently if we were to measure our lives in terms of overcoming failures?