on writing

How to Find Hope in the Remembering

Some of my most valuable possessions are in a plastic box with a snap top. It sits on a shelf in my garage surrounded by Christmas decorations, out-of-season clothes, and old VHS tapes. As I prepared to clean out the garage last week, I pulled my treasure chest off the shelf. Because it’s stuffed full, the top opened with a pop. There, tumbling out, came three-ring binders, spiral notebooks, [Read more...]

5 Book Recommendations from My Mid-Year Favorites {2017}

Here we are, mid-July and mid-summer. Six months of reading time over and six more months to find more good books! I love must-read book recommendations from trusted friends and writers. I consider it a gift when you read something and think to recommend it to me. This book list post is my gift to you. So far, forty-two books graced my nightstand or ear buds in 2017. These are my top five [Read more...]

#FridayFive Top Five

Recently, a precious friend stepped down from a leadership position in a ministry where I serve. When she messaged me to let me know, she wanted to make sure our friendship remained intact. The first thing that came to my mind were the lyrics to Michael W. Smith’s “Friends are Friends Forever,” circa 1987. And friends are friends forever If the Lord’s the Lord of them And [Read more...]

My Favorite Things (a #FridayFive Link Up)

Spring is a time of rediscovery. New flowers in the beds, new wreaths on the door, new fruits showing up at the grocery store.This week, I exchanged my melancholy comforter for a white quilt. The girls are wearing their pastels. We painted our toes and pulled out the sandals. No more hiding from winter! It’s time to party! Everything feels new and fresh! This is the perfect time of year to [Read more...]

Stuck between Your Calling and Your Life: What Now?

My first decision of the morning starts around 10 pm the night before. As I sit on the edge of my bed, alarm clock in hand, I decide between sleep and an hour of quiet reading and reflection. I can’t do both; there is only enough time for one thing. When my alarm sounds the next morning, I face the decision again—snooze or rise and enter into that predetermined quiet space. These [Read more...]

5 Songs to Include in the Christian Writer’s Playlist

I remember the days before Spotify, iTunes, and Amazon Music, where a swipe of the finger pulls up your favorite songs. I even remember the pre-CD days, when I had shoeboxes of my favorite music neatly organized beside my stereo. In my high school days, I kept a blank cassette tape in the jam box. When I song I liked came on the radio, I would rush over and press “record” so I could [Read more...]

Is Real Life Getting in the Way of Your Big Dreams?

Do you dream big dreams about making a difference in the world? Maybe you see yourself behind a podium delivering a message that makes a crowd laugh, cry, and run to Jesus. Your dream may involve bandaging wounds or ladling soup for the sick and hungry in a developing country. You may quietly hope your pastor will choose you to head up an exciting new program at your church. My own dream [Read more...]

What I Did Instead of Setting New Year’s Goals

I am tired of feeling overwhelmed. Years of goal-setting and driving hard to achieve those goals left me feeling frazzled, stretched, and out of focus. When presented with an opportunity to read Kathi Lipp and Cheri Gregorie’s new book, Overwhelmed: How to Quiet the Chaos and Restore Your Sanity, I knew I needed whatever they had to say to me. The book did not disappoint. Kathi and Cheri [Read more...]

What I Know to Be True About Character

I have about thirty minutes to write about character today. Thirty minutes is roughly how long my son’s nap music lasts. He stopped napping last week. He climbed out of his baby bed during nap time. I heard a thump followed by, “I did it!” He was so proud, and I watched five to ten hours of sanity slip through my fingers. Since the great escape, I try to make him stay in his new [Read more...]

Numbers Make a Lousy God

Another rejection letter hit the inbox last week. A popular site for women sent out the woohoo’s and thank you’s on the latest round of submissions. Perhaps you received the polite “thanks for playing,” too. Did your heart sink a little? As I submit my words for approval and receive rejections (or worse, the rejection of silence), my writer heart sometimes sinks low. I [Read more...]