why Christians need to care about the environment, and 5 tips to get you started

Environmental awareness is important for Christians! 5 tips to get you started.

My son came home from kindergarten, thrilled about the fact that Earth Day is coming up. His class had a litter-less lunch day and he’s been learning all about the importance of recycling to help our environment. For some reason, this is something all our kids know (and remind us of on repeat!) but we tend to forget about in the daily grind of raising families. Christians are notoriously resistant to the idea of caring for the environment, usually because of misleading end-times theology…if we think we’re going to be raptured off the earth before it goes to pot, why bother caring?* There are, however, two compelling reasons to care for the earth. The best reason to care about the earth is because it is filled with Image-Bearers of God – people created and adored by our God. When our overconsumption and waste affects the atmosphere, severe droughts happen in sub-saharan Africa … Read More

The 9 best reasons to live in a houseful of boys

One mom's humorous take on what it is like to raise 3 sons

If I had a dollar for every time someone said one of the following things to me when I’m out with my 3 boys, I’d be living on a private island right now: Are you trying for a girl? You must be busy. *look of extreme sympathy* Rather than divulge any personal information about my reproductive life, I think I might start printing and handing out copies of this list of all the best reasons to be raising a crop of boys! 1) Appreciation for my poop jokes. I love a good poop joke. No, not excessive ones at the kitchen table, but a witty poop joke can crack me up anytime. Try this one on for size: Knock knock Who’s there? Yoop Yoop who? No, I didn’t poo. Did you? I truly appreciate having an easily-pleased audience when I come up with that type of gem. 2) Less clothes Sometimes I have … Read More

the silvery voices from on high

heavens

A long time ago, before the cares of the world bowed her low, she sat in the night at the base of a circle of wooden risers, staring into the lingering glimmer at the heart of the fire pit. Where there once was a bonfire circled with stones and boisterous children, there now was only the tiny glow, and the girl. Lights in the sky winked at her through lightyears of darkness, and the scent of wet sand gently tickled her throat. A breeze lifted the hairs on her arms as she gazed into the forsaken embers. Her song, hushed and youthful, nevertheless opened the gates of heaven itself, and as it went in, another sound came out. An ensemble of voices lifted in the wind, and she caught her breath. Was it the other children? No. This was too tune-perfect to be them. Besides, they were all off eating snacks … Read More

when your soul is weary and dry

weary

I am weary. Not the kind of weary that can be cured by a good night’s sleep or a cup of coffee, but soul-achingly weary. Do you feel it too? I am weary from doing all the things, carrying the burdens both physical and mental, filling out all the papers…it’s enough to suck a soul dry. Parched. Except my tear ducts seem to be working fine. I laughed a deep belly laugh today, for the first time in a long time, and still the tears were there, blurring my vision but not spilling over. Hidden. Then I look around and see what my friends are dealing with, and say to myself, “you have no right to feel like this. Look at how much hard they have. Your hard doesn’t count.” But like I told a friend other day, tired is hard too. Weary is hard. Sadness is hard. Your hard and my hard, they’re different. But … Read More

3 steps toward walking away from worry

worry

It was like a child had unrolled a skein of yarn and tried to put it back together, then placed the ensuing mess in my mind for me to unravel and place back in the proper order. The things I needed to do today mixed with the list I needed to start for a family trip which overlapped with the appointments that needed to be made and the overwhelm of all the writerly things I wanted to, no, needed to get done. It was enough tangled yarn to hang oneself with. Nearly overwhelming, constricting the throat as my heartbeat raced my car down the highway. The thoughts would not untangle. Jesus’ words on worry almost seemed trite. “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body … Read More

The expense of forgiveness

forgive

I picked up another small shirt, shook it out, then folded it. As I added it to the growing pile of clean laundry, the pile of dirty laundry in my heart grew. I had been highly embarrassed by a tactless remark, and was fuming about the lack of apology from the offender. Despite having told the person my feelings, including that I was planning to forgive them, unforgiveness was a stain on my soul. I thought about all the ways that I could remind them about their infraction, all the ways I could manipulate them into an apology. The stain deepened. // My Bible app was playing through Exodus, but I was barely paying attention to all the rules for the tabernacle. As I folded a pair of pants and the reader droned through the rules of sacrifices, I was arrested by a peculiar thought: the Kingdom of God is … Read More

The 3 verse gospel

Share the gospel in 3 verses; includes printable posters!

I was sitting in the first row in my Invertebrates class at University, waiting for it to start. I have no idea why I sat in the front that day, normally being a back-row sitter. It must have been the fascinating subject material…I mean, jellyfish and crustaceans would certainly keep anyone on the edge of their seat. My lab partner came and sat next to me, and we started chatting. I don’t recall the subject of our discussion, except that she suddenly asked me THE question… “What do Christians believe anyway?” My heart stuttered, my mouth went dry. I had been a Christian most of my life, why was I suddenly panicking? I hastily drew a bridge on my notebook and went through the “bridge illustration” with her, but class was about to start. I’m pretty sure I told the whole thing in less than a minute (once I actually got started). Has … Read More

What love with skin on really looks like

I once heard a preacher man tell of Jesus’ great love for Peter. Peter, the man who stood within earshot and swore upside-down and sideways that he had never met the man he once called Lord. Peter, back to fishing soon after they murdered his heart’s disowned owner, turning back to the job he knew because the job he wanted had broken his heart. Peter, who awkwardly swam to shore, lungs burning, muscles aching, mind afire after a long night of staring into the fathomless depths of Galilee waiting for a bite. And when he got to shore, panting, dripping, heart knotted like a tossed-aside fishing net, he saw that the man he had cursed had breakfast ready. Fish and bread. The same meal the disciples twice passed out to impossible thousands of lost people, now offered to seven fishermen who forgot they were fishers of men, not fish. Jesus … Read More

When your child believes the lies of the enemy

My two oldest boys get on each other’s nerves something fierce these days. Recently, however, the fights were different. Tensions were high because of a deep mistrust that had burrowed itself into the mind of my eldest. Every word spoken and every action taken by his brother brought him to the brink of a tantrum because he felt like his brother was “out to get” him. During a particularly hard day when everyone in the family had gotten frustrated with his attitude, he wailed to his dad, “I feel like everyone is against me” and it finally clicked. My little boy was believing lies. You see, we have this enemy who wants to devour and destroy anything good in the lives of our boys. He does not want them growing up with a strong bond of brotherly love, and he will do what it takes to tear that bond apart. Lies were … Read More

Why is digital media so confusing? (book study, week 2)

digital media

What’s the dumbest thing you did as a teenager? My teen years were pretty tame,except for the time I snuck out my window to hang out with my friend at 1 am (terrible, I know). My husband has a story about when he and his buddies gathered aerosol cans and gasoline from a friend’s garage and lit them on fire. Kids can be truly dumb sometimes, right? Ok, so we got into plenty of trouble as kids (some of us more so than others), but why does it feel like the trouble our kids can get into with digital media is so much worse? It feels worse, because it is a whole new world. The shift from analog to digital media is a huge paradigm shift. DEFINITION: Analog media = old media: radio, TV, film, recorded music. Non-interactive. Digital media: “A puzzle of computers, microchips, software, video game, and the Internet that coalesced together as one … Read More