• Heartprints

    Teaching Our Children the Importance of Church

    Author Shane Claiborne has said: “The church is like Noah's ark. It stinks, but if you get out of it, you'll drown.” Simply put, church can get messy. And, that’s probably part of the reason why I’ve heard many of my fellow millennials make excuses for avoiding church—“I’m too busy,” “I’ve been hurt by other Christians,” “churches are full of judgmental people,” “people are hypocrites or insincere,” etc. We live in a society that increasingly seems to disparage church attendance, a sharp contrast to the psalmist who said, “I was glad because they said to me, ‘We will go to the Lord’s temple’” (Psalm 122:1). Now, going to church, of…

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    Living for the Glory of God

      When Anna and I sat in carpool a few weeks ago, she asked me, “Mom, how do I know that I’m glorifying God?”   As believers we want to convey Christ-likeness to the world. We want to show everyone something different about us. So we challenge ourselves to “be the light and salt of the world” and we put ourselves out there for others to see something extra-ordinary about us.   We encourage our loved ones and other believers to live that way too. Not too long ago, I wrote about glorifying God at school. You can read about it here.  So how do we know that our lives…

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    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…

  • Heartprints

    Helping Children Worship God Through Music

    When God calls a young child to himself, it’s a beautiful thing. I marvel at how the gospel message is so complex, yet at the same time simple enough that even a toddler can be convicted unto salvation. I’ve observed the Holy Spirit at work in the lives of several children, but one girl stands out in particular in my mind—sweet little Caroline. As a three-year-old, she always knew the answers to every Bible question thrown her way and loved to praise the Lord in music. One Sunday morning, I watched her stand up and raise her palms as she sang quietly to the Lord. Her spontaneous gesture was short-lived,…

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    Friday Night Lights

    In our house fall is fraught with sweltering Texas temperatures and scads of sunscreen, the smell of leather and ringing of cowbells, bright stadium lights and cheers recited to the beat of the band. We’re a football family, and fall is game time. Before marrying my husband, a high school football coach, I had no clue about Texas football. If you’re not from Texas, the game, fans, band, and tailgates can seem cultish. It’s an obsession around these parts—and that’s what makes it so wonderful. There’s something that fosters family when you spend Friday nights with the same cheering section over and over. It doesn’t matter if the game is…

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    Father’s Day Memories of my Daddy

    My father, who passed away 30 years ago at 63, was a quiet and thoughtful man, a person of great integrity and spiritual maturity. As Father’s Day approaches, I think of him and the life lessons he taught me through his strengths—lessons that have served me well as a person and often as a leader.  Daddy loved the Word of God. He never led us in family devotionals, much to my mother’s dismay, but he many nights he read us Bible stories at bedtime. Often when I found him deep in study in his chair, I would ask him what he was reading. He usually responded by taking me in…

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    Clear Summer Days

    Ah, the first weeks of summer vacation—a blissful time in the life of a mother and her children. Kids have finally finished the school year and moms have hung their chauffeur hats for a while. The Monday morning rush has come to a halt, the emails from school have completely ceased and at the end of the day, mothers across the country can finally stop asking, “Did you finish your homework? Did you study for your test?”    The beginning of summer brings such sweet hopes. It gives mothers and children an opportunity to commit their time to each other. Mothers make endless promises of fun and the kids—especially teens—realize they…

  • Heartprints

    3 Ways to Encourage Your Children to Share Their Faith

    I think most of us desire to see our children live out their faith but when life gets busy evangelism often takes a back burner. Here are three ways to encourage your children to share their faith: 1. Teach by Example: Children tend to imitate those they love and those whom they spend time with. And of course, we’ve all heard the old adage that actions speak louder than words. This holds true for evangelism as well. The best way to teach our children to share their faith is by doing so ourselves. The gospel ought to permeate every aspects of our lives. It is not so much about making…

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    Don’t Let Your Hearts Be Troubled

    A few weeks ago, my husband and I decided to skip the traditional fish brunch that I normally prepare for Easter and we made reservations to go eat at a restaurant instead. This past Sunday, along with many other folks, my family feasted—I mean, we ate like kings and queens—on some serious food. My favorite part of the brunch? I didn’t have to do dishes afterwards. My least favorite moment? The weeks before Easter.   In the days leading up to Easter, I kind of drove my family crazy. Instead of showing enthusiasm about our new plans, I resisted. Every time someone shared their excitement, I killed it with horror.…

  • Heartprints

    A Family Gospel Devotional from 1 Corinthians 15

    Holy week has commenced and Resurrection Sunday draws near. And, if you read blogs, my guess is that you also use other forms of social media and are probably drowning in Easter activities via Pinterest, Facebook, etc. I mean did you know you can even make a tomb out of a donut and an Oreo? Yeah, neither did I until everyone posted it on Pinterest. These activities bring fun and joy, but if you only do one Easter activity with your family this year, I challenge you to make it a gospel devotional based on 1 Corinthians 15. Preparation: Get your family Bible and read 1 Corinthians 15:1–8, 53–58 out…