September 2015

New Season, New Goals

In my neck of the woods, the earth is shifting into the slower, more colorful season of fall. While the trees are packing up their photosynthesis for the winter and the birds are soaring in V-formation toward a warmer sun, I am entering a new level of chaos. This whir of activity has my goal-oriented head pounding and my heart searching for peace with our new normal. Just a few short months ago, [Read more...]

Five Open Tabs

For today’s #FridayFive, we are sharing open tabs. Can I be real in this space? I thought about being super-spiritual and tracking down 5 profound blog posts for you to read. It would help build my case for being awesome. Instead of being awesome, I decided to be real. Facebook and Twitter are a given. I considered an essay on the positive and negative side of social media. It has been [Read more...]

The Beautiful Mess of Serving Others

How is your week going? Have you been busy? Stressed? A little overwhelmed? Me, too. We had a visitor this week. The stomach bug came calling on a few family members. It visited my toddler in the night. I didn’t discover it until the early morning when the smell nearly knocked me down. Laundry is bad. Vomit laundry is worse. Slept on vomit laundry is pure evil. It made me a little evil, [Read more...]

Come, Lord Jesus (but Wait)

My high-school-self was a little conflicted about the return of Christ. I remember staring up at the sky. The ground lay hard beneath me; the sky, soft and endless above me. I could almost imagine the puffs of white parting as Jesus broke through eternity to come get His Church. At first, this brought a sense of joy. Then, a little panic began to creep in; a dark cloud in my blue sky. I wanted to [Read more...]

Climbing the Family Tree

Tell your children of it, and let your children tell their children, and their children to another generation. Joel 1:3 Last Sunday was Grandparent’s Day. I missed it. Sometimes I stink at these Hallmark card moments. What can I do to make up for missing a chance to honor my generational heroes? I can write about them, of course! For most of my adult life, I have worked with older adults. [Read more...]

Mama Called in Sick: A Lesson About Guilt and Being Present

I took a sick day yesterday and fought off a fever, a cough and guilt. My list was long and I had no time to lay on the couch or prop my feet up. Clothes were piled high at the base of the washing machine. Beds laid unmade. The shelves of the refrigerator were bare; the pantry supplies, scarce. In the early hours of my morning, I wrestled with my planner. It begged to be filled with errands and [Read more...]

Does Absence Make the Heart Grow Fonder or Colder?

Does absence really make the heart grow fonder or does it turn cold during separation? I recently got to test this old adage out with two back-to-back weekends of separation from my husband. A few weeks ago, I traveled  to Austin, TX alone to meet up with friends. I left behind 2 sick children and one brave dad. All weekend, my mind wandered back home. I imagined a fussy baby, a sassy [Read more...]

#FridayFive: Glimpses of Joy

Have you ever soared high on emotions while on a trip or conference only to come crashing down when you return to real life? That is how I landed after my trip to Austin last weekend. After enjoying the ultimate girls’ weekend, I came home to fever and sickness. Real life was a crash landing, all of the happy memories folding up like twisted metal upon impact. In the middle of the coughing [Read more...]

A Redneck in Jen Hatmaker’s Yard

I am allergic to emotions. As soon as I feel a strong emotion, my neck turns splotchy red. I feel it creeping up from the edges of my shirt and I can’t stop it. Anger, joy, embarrassment, excitement. Good emotions, bad emotions. My red neck does not differentiate. I can be in complete control, and still my neck splotches red. It makes me special. My co-workers know it. Recently, when [Read more...]

Let Go of Stinking Excuses

Everyone dreams. Sit down in the quiet with a cup of coffee and allow your mind to wander. Where does God take you? What dream has He put in your heart? A little over a year ago, I took some time to dream. Guided by Pathway to  Purpose by Katherine Brazelton, I allowed myself to dream God-sized dreams. I dreamed of writing. I dreamed of discipling women. I dreamed of extending my reach beyond my [Read more...]