Cultivate: Tilling for Hope

I don’t love cooking, but I do love eating a homemade meal. So I cook. In much the same way, I don’t love gardening, but I do love eating fresh, homegrown veggies. So I go to the farmer’s market. Ha! However, there were a couple of summers that my gardener husband had time and energyContinue reading “Cultivate: Tilling for Hope”

Cultivate: Plowing for Hope

One winter I had the inspired idea to plant tulip bulbs in the hard, red dirt of Oklahoma. I went into the project thinking I’d dig some holes, drop in some bulbs, and wait for spring. But what transpired was HARD WORK.  My little spade proved quite inadequate, especially used by my scrawny-mom arms. IContinue reading “Cultivate: Plowing for Hope”

Hope Revival

Even people who don’t typically keep up with the NFL (National Football League) have more than likely heard about the recent collapse of Buffalo Bills player, Damar Hamlin. The night Damar’s heart stopped beating on the football field, everyone present and watching on TV stopped. Right where they were. With bated breath. Praying and hopingContinue reading “Hope Revival”

Hope Redeemed

Turn the news on, and we hear story after story that seemingly affirms what we’ve suspected: the world is out of control. Invasions, crime, political divides, corruption, and religious failures scream to our fears, “There’s no hope!” Add to this list our personal burdens–family conflict, financial strain, failing health–and it’s no wonder we’ve become theContinue reading “Hope Redeemed”

God With Us: Hope

Last night my extended family rang in the new year together as we gathered to celebrate the wedding of two beloved 20-somethings in our family. Like births, weddings intrinsically hold within them much hope–hope for the future, hope for lasting love, hope for starting well so that all that is to come will have aContinue reading “God With Us: Hope”

God With Us: Presence

Today we light the fifth candle of Advent in honor of Jesus Himself. Imagine an Advent wreath encircling a looming, white candle, arising from its central place and marking Christ’s presence at the center of our being–personally and corporately. The flame flickers its glow across the room ready for the joy of this Day. YetContinue reading “God With Us: Presence”

God With Us: Love

Perhaps there is no word more overused in our culture than ‘love.’  Love my family.Love chips and salsa.Love Jane Austen.Love Hallmark Christmas movies.Love a good mystery.Love my Christmas tree.Love my friends.Love a good cup of hot tea. You get the idea. We tend to L.O.V.E. everything. In all our loving, we lose the potency forContinue reading “God With Us: Love”

God With Us: Joy

This time of year the word ‘joy’ can be seen and heard everywhere–on decorations, in songs, even on people’s lips. All of which become reminders of just how much we long to have joy in our souls. Instead of just seeing and hearing about joy, we deeply desire to possess it ourselves. Ironically, it’s thisContinue reading “God With Us: Joy”

God With Us: Peace

The rush of a season meant for festivities often leaves us floundering in a wake of struggle and stress. Hustle shifts, becoming the hectic pace of hurry. Long lists begin to feel like imprisonment instead of empowerment. And plans for peace and joy get swallowed by panic and chaos.  Will I get it all done?WillContinue reading “God With Us: Peace”