worship

The DR Diaries: Did I Make a Difference? {Day 4}

I finally found my comfort zone during our final day of ministry. Our team worked in a rehab clinic at a hospital, which is what I do in my normal life. The patients presented with familiar issues, and without a moment’s hesitation, I knew how to help. I finally felt comfortable directing my students, too. I am so thankful the Lord withheld this familiarity from me until the last day. I [Read more...]

The DR Diaries: The Day I Understood My Smallness {Day 1}

Earlier this month, I traveled to Juan Dolio, Dominican Republic with Christian Medical Ministries of Alabama (CMMA). They partner with our local university (which happens to be my alma mater) to give students an opportunity to connect their area of study with ministry through short-term missions. This was my first medical mission trip and my first time in the Dominican Republic (DR). I [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...]

The Weight of Worship

In 2004 I arrived. It was the year I accomplished everything on my wish list. After my high school graduation, I packed up my red Chevy Cavalier and headed to the city. I shook the small-town dust off my Birkenstocks and marched full speed toward my dreams. I pursued my degree with unequivocal focus. I landed my first professional job—one that required credentials after my signature. My true [Read more...]

5 Ways to Help Give God Your First 15 Minutes

The early days with a newborn are pure survival. Sleep when you can, as long as you can. At some point, the baby begins to sleep a little longer, a little later. It took almost four years for my first born to sleep through the night. Those years of minimal sleep were difficult, to say the least. I quickly learned the importance of priorities and planning. Showers required strategic timing. [Read more...]

The Carol of Traveling Sounds

“At Christmas, all roads lead home.” ~Marjorie Holmes The sound of travel thrills me. My earliest memory of this auditory obsession dates back to the early 80’s. I remember walking up and down the dirt drive in front of my grandparents’ old chicken house just to hear the gravel crunch beneath my Jordache sneakers. Besides listening to my grandmother read, it was my favorite thing to do at [Read more...]

When You Are Tired of Listening to the Pundits

Y’all. The debates. The campaigning. The analysis. I’m ready for November 9th—with the new President elected, we will have a bit of peace on the airwaves. That is, until January when he or she takes office. Then the arguing and debating will fire up again. Sigh. I haven’t tuned into all of the radio talk shows and news programs this go-around. I love to dialogue with [Read more...]

No Longer and Not Yet

“Honor the space between no longer and not yet.” ~Nancy Levin Big transitions are often preceded by a period of waiting. It can be torturous. We can get frustrated with delays and speed bumps. If the next big thing would just hurry up and get here, we think, we could get on with life. We look up to the heavens and ask God, “How long must I wait?” Three long months separate high school [Read more...]

When My Worship Is All About Me

I stood in the worship service, hands lifted as music filled me. Emotions swirled in those moments: love for the God who first loved me, gratitude for both life and eternal life through Jesus, a sense of awe at the presence of the Holy Spirit. The speakers rattled just a bit as the volume of the music rose, my thoughts were lost in the chords and phrases. Worship is a sacred place for us to [Read more...]

Breakthrough Insights from an Astonishing Answered Prayer

I learned some things about answered prayer from two Hondas and three friends. It started with a 2002 Honda Odyssey. I really wanted my minivan to make it to 300,000 miles. I babied her, took her to my mechanic faithfully, and beamed at the progressing odometer. It’s not so much because I was attached to her, I just don’t like a car payment. When the oil puddles started growing, I [Read more...]