• Heartprints

    TAKING TIME TO WORSHIP

    How is it possible that the day of the year set aside as a Holy Day to celebrate the greatest gift ever given usually finds us exhausted, stressed, and even at times depressed? Our children wake up all excited in anticipation of presents that in the end may or may not be what they expected. Spirits tend to dwindle as we move through the day ending up tired, over sugared, and overwhelmed ready to fall into bed exhausted.   We all have a desire to focus on the Lord. As believers. we usually plan to do our best to make the season one that is about worship and gratitude. Honestly, how…

  • Impact

    A House Divided

    “If a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand” (Mark 3:25). The headlines recently, in America, were certainly unsettling for a news and commentary junkie like myself. The United States seemed to be imploding, committing suicide on live television. For some time now I have believed that we are witnessing the self-destruction of the United States. I often think of the words of Abraham Lincoln, who said, “America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.” History will show whether this proves true or not. On Friday morning July 8th, many…

  • Engage

    Managing Our 2016 Expectations

    Back in the saddle of weekly activities,  2016 is already barreling along, the stock market and the weather jerking around like a bull in the Houston Rodeo. (Or…maybe that should be a bear?)  Whether we write down our goals and vision for the year ahead or not, we all have this picture of the way we'd like things to be. And then life happens. Here are some reminders to think about, pray about, as we try to live on purpose when life starts bucking around: We hold our expectations with open, God-trusting hands. Like Nehemiah, we may long to see certain outcomes and ready strategic plans for the moment when…

  • Engage

    Disruption: Thoughts on Life and Chaos

    Recently I set a goal to keep the house in spic and span shape for five days straight.  Admittedly, this isn’t the most exciting thing one can do, but there’s something refreshing about coming home from work with your surroundings in order….shirts hung neatly on their hangers, shoes in their rightful spot, junk mail sorted out and squared away.  It gives one a sense of orderliness, peacefulness, and, most importantly, control.  So, I set out last Sunday, spent a few hours getting rooms, bathrooms, and closets in top-notch shape, and determined to maintain my newfound tidiness for one week straight. And then life happened.

  • Engage

    Home Sweet Home

    This past week I walked away from a position I loved. Working has brought me so much joy, but after a year of going into an office, I found myself in a familiar place that makes my life seem perfect, but unbearable for those who live with me. I thrive in chaos. It’s the environment in which I grew up in and it makes me feel good about myself. Chaos feeds my selfishness and pride. I write better, work harder and I have my own way of doing things. When things got chaotic with me working, I planned everything from what time my girls needed to get up to what…

  • Engage

    Gaza, Ukraine, ISIS, Afghanistan, Libya, Honduras…Five Ways To Dispel Dread

    Like me, you hear the stories of a jet blown out of the sky, bodies falling and bloating in the Ukranian sun. No one allowed to gather them and send them home to their grieving families. In Europe. And you sense that some line has been crossed. Christians flee Mosul, Iraq, their community’s home for thousands of years, with only the clothes on their backs (see Gwen's post below). Another line crossed.    Maybe also like me, the churn in the world amplifies the churn of bad news in your own family and friends–careers disrupted, separation–news that has you "writing the book" with heartbreaking storylines. Do we let the dread…

  • Engage

    March Madness

    March madness has ended. The NCAA tournament is over for another year. Today many will feel a little bit of sadness that the momentum of the unpredictable, drama infused and entertaining madness has concluded. Do any folks who sacrifice for the tournament ever say, “Yeah, that was so worth it?” Like this past tournament, I had my own nerve-racking experience. My March madness began with an annual trip to the breast center for a mammogram. That’s what I do to celebrate my birthday each year. It’s weird, I know, but I never forget to schedule it. So I went, complained a whole bunch, and thought nothing of it. A few…