December 2015

4 Important Lessons from My Ambitious 2015 Goals

I set goals every year. This is the first year I shared them publicly. I chronicled my progress every month, the highs and the lows. I’d rather not do this run down of my ambitious list of goals for 2015. It always feels better to share huge successes than epic failure. But, here it is, along with a few things I learned about setting goals this year. First, a quick rundown of my December [Read more...]

18 Helpful Goal Setting Resources for an Amazing Year

Christmas is over. It’s time for countdown lists of the top this and best that. It’s time to look back at our own year and evaluate. What do you feel when you look back? Are you satisfied with your accomplishments? Regretful at the time lost? There is value in looking back, in learning from yesterday’s successes and failures. However, don’t spend too much time on the past. [Read more...]

The Word Became Flesh

“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” ~John 1:14 ESV One of my favorite movies of all time is Sleepless in Seattle. Sam Baldwin is a widowed father whose eight-year-old son calls a radio talk show on his behalf on Christmas Eve. Annie Reed is listening. Hearing about the deep love Sam had for his wife stirs her heart. Annie sends Sam a letter, asking him to meet her on top of the [Read more...]

The Birth of Hope

The A newborn baby inspires hope. The earthy, metallic smell of birth mixes with the sweetness of Johnson & Johnson’s baby lotion. It reaches your heart through your nose. A smile tickles your lips just as you start to talk in a silly voice that you wouldn’t dare use in an adult conversation. Babies are a phenomenon of hope and expectation. My sister recently gave birth to her [Read more...]

Mary Remembers: A Story of Light and Hope

Today, as darkness tries to swallow me alive, I find myself reliving the first days of this incredible journey. It is the only place I can find light. Light. Light is how it all began. I remember the light. How it started small and then grew so bright. I had to look away and shield my eyes for fear I would go blind. Once my eyes adjusted, I saw something or someone. I felt instant peace in his [Read more...]

Five Hopes for a Promising New Year

The last few weeks of the year I am drawn to reflection and projection. I look back on all the last twelve months held and dream big about the next twelve. Before I start making lists of all I will do, I want to consider all that I hope for the new year. Five Hopes for a Promising New Year Hope for Big Faith I believe God. I really do. I believe He can do big things, things that absolutely blow [Read more...]

Starstruck Love: Worship Jesus like a Toddler

It’s been a while since we’ve had a little one in the house at Christmas. Barrett turned two last week so this is the first Christmas he is aware of the holiday magic going on around him. It is fun to watch him experience Christmas for the first time. He squeals as we pass Christmas lights and points to every snowman he sees. It makes everything new again for me. He makes us laugh [Read more...]

A Joy-Filled Makeover

The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me, because the LORD has anointed me to bring good news to the poor; he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; to proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn; to grant to those who mourn in Zion— to [Read more...]

Five Reasons to Choose Joy

As I try to get my heart and mind prepared for Christmas, I find myself sitting with sweet Mary. I wonder about her life before the conception, her visit with the angel, and pregnancy as an unwed, Jewish teenager. I consider her thoughts on the donkey, the tears in her eyes in the stable, and the way she must have looked at Jesus when he played in the dirt. It never stops there, though. I follow [Read more...]

Family Conflict at Christmas

Christmas commercials are the best. During the month of December, there are endless replays of families gathered around trees and tables, laughing and passing the mashed potatoes. Everyone is in love and high on Christmas cheer. And then there’s reality. Husband and wife bicker about the budget. Wife sulks on the way to the in-laws. Husband hides at his mother’s to avoid the drama. The [Read more...]