• Engage

    Training the next generation to seek Jesus; the call to intentional parenting

    I am an experienced camper.  Growing up, my family camped across the United States from the Mexican Border to New York City. We tent camped during tornadoes, temperatures above 100 degrees, and flooding rain. I remember hunkering down in a bathroom during a tornado warning only to share the bathroom with the biggest scorpion my little eyes had ever seen.  As a child, I couldn’t decide if I would rather suffer through the storm in the tent or cower in the corner with the scorpion. Included in my memories of these cherished family adventures were Sundays on vacation. My Dad always traveled with a suit. His mother was elderly, and…

  • Heartprints

    Called To Disciple

    Have you ever wondered what it would have been like to have experienced and learned from Jesus during His earthly ministry?  The other day my husband and I were having a conversation regarding the way we respond towards different people and their circumstances.  He told me that I was like the apostle John and he was more like Peter.   Who was John?  Well, John was spoken of as the disciple Jesus loved.  (John 13:23) The Scripture is clear that John was the brother of James and the son of Zebedee. (Matt. 4:21-22; Mark 3:13-19; Luke 6:12-16).  He was a fisherman by trade and an ordinary man.  Many are familiar with John because he wrote five books…

  • Heartprints

    “Embracing God When You Want To Run”

    Spring is a time for new flowers, budding trees, green grass, sunshine, insects, and yes, snakes.  Snakes out already? You bet…as temperatures start to climb those dreadful reptiles come out of hibernation and begin to enjoy the greater outdoors.  I realize that some snakes are considered good, but for me, I have never been one to stick around when I see one.  Instead, I become the fastest sprint runner on the track, leaving everyone behind. A few weeks ago, I was walking in our pasture with our grandsons enjoying the warm sunny Kansas day. As we walked, our conversation centered around God’s creation marveling at the beauty He has given us.  As we walked, we…

  • Heartprints

    Almighty God “Hear Our Prayer”

    Has your prayer life increased these past few weeks?  Perhaps you are praying for things you have never prayed for in the past. Maybe you have been praying for a hedge of protection, a spirit of hope, a heart filled with peace, a mind filled with God’s Word, an attitude of trust, the list goes on and on if you are like me. Our faith has been stretched and our lives have been turned upside down.  Many of us have had circumstances in our own lives that have rocked us to the core, but most can say that they have never experienced a rocking quite like this during their lifetime. It is during…

  • Heartprints

    The Velveteen Christian

    Our world is made up of a constant cacophony of voices. Truth, lies, myths, imaginations, and opinions fill our world with dissidence and confusion. We have information overload. It is difficult to discern who can be trusted because of the spin, the agendas, the omitted facts or the inserted insinuations that twist and distort. I grew up during the sex revolution. A whole generation believed that being real was living without restraints. Getting what you wanted, as much as you wanted, whenever you wanted it. No strings attached defined love for those who bought into the free love movement. Easter is coming soon and as I prepare my heart to…

  • Heartprints

    Praising God for Who He Is!

    Many years ago, our daughter and I were driving on an icy road when I lost control of my minivan. It was spring break, so my daughter and I decided to go to a movie.  The weather was a bit concerning, but living in Kansas everyone knows how to drive on the ice, right?  The moment we walked out of the movie theater, I knew that the conditions had worsened and that we were in for a very long drive home.    Growing up in the Midwest I was taught to drive slow on ice and to only tap the breaks lightly.  We were about 10 minutes from home, and…

  • Heartprints

    Searching for Advent

    On our way to church I asked my children, “What is Advent?” One child said “I don’t know,” and the other, “When we get ready for Christmas.” Part of me felt like a failure as a “Christian mom.” But then I realized, I’ve been searching for Advent since their birth. What is this season for? I came to faith in a modern Christian expression that lacks tradition. So my first Christmas as a mom—I had no clue what spiritual traditions to share with my children. I turned to my information resource—the internet. And therein I found hundreds of ideas on Advent calendars and Christmas season activities. Bake sugar cookies. Read…

  • Engage

    You Were Meant for Today

    You were Meant for Today! It was quite a shock when I found out I was pregnant, for the third time, nearly 5 years after having given birth to my last little bundle of joy.  To complicate matters, we received the news just weeks after we announced that we would be moving from our beloved community, leaving behind a life of ministry and part-time jobs that I loved.   Suddenly, I had to come to grips with the idea that I would now be going backward. Or, at least that is how I interpreted the situation. Of course, I have pursued motherhood out of a calling and it has been one…

  • Heartprints

    Tips for Teaching #2

    I believe that today’s tip can help us better prepare our children for the difficulties of standing strong in their faith Tip number two: Encourage children to embrace their struggles. According to Walking with God through Pain and Suffering, by Tim Keller., our culture is one of the few around the world that believes that suffering is to be avoided at any cost. Most cultures see suffering as a normal part of life and essential for becoming healthy productive adults. Though suffering is uncomfortable, and scary, it is also unavoidable. Our task is to help our children see past the difficulties. Suffering is a gift to help us grow in our…

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    Heartprints

    The Blame and Shame Game

    We live in a day and age when counseling is a norm. Many churches have a Christian counselor on staff. Folks flock to bookstores where self-care and wellness books line the shelves. I woke this morning thinking that counseling is often a safe place to confess. The idea that we need to confess our sins against others as well as their sins against us verbally is a huge part of the healing process. Personally, I have not found that another human telling me that I am not at fault or am forgiven hasn’t been  truly freeing. It is more like a bandage than a cure. It stops my bleeding heart…