Posts

We Need People

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  My heart broke when I saw a post about just needing Jesus and not anyone else. I wondered how broken that person must feel that the people in her life have shown no benefit or blessing to her. I wanted to reply but felt my comments would only be taken as annoying. When someone has signed off on people, the comments made by people aren’t usually received well.     One of the most emerging, in-my-face-type of factors that has grabbed my attention in the pandemic is that isolation is bad for people. Out of good intention or fear, it seems that we are fearful of getting too close to people. I don’t mean the guy that becomes a backpack to the person in front of him in the Starbucks line. He can just take a step back and give everyone a little space. I mean the idea that we don’t/can’t/shouldn’t hug others, welcome them into our spaces, or sit across a cute café table and share an ice cream with a friend or the workspace with a stranger. We fear that which God gave us to hold one another u

Following Breadcrumbs: fact-checking, foot noting and finding the truth

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  When we formulate an argument —whether an academic essay, sermon notes, social media rant, or a blogpost– it raises the validity of our point if we have sources to support our claims. Our readers or listeners who know us well will likely trust our thoughts (or maybe they know us well enough to  not  trust our thoughts) but those who stumble across us on the web or in the real-life world won’t know if our words are worth their digital space.    Our school children are taught to use reliable sources for their research and to cite them properly. Our university students are expected to find peer reviewed articles to support their points. As purposefully thinking participants on social media or consumers of news reports, fact checking from a third-party source is necessary (but often left undone).    This habit of following the breadcrumbs is also fascinating to use for Bible study. Unless you are reading from your 14-pound, 5-inch thick KJV family Bible with the heavily decorative cover

Loose Gravel vs. Trustworthy Stones

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  We heard Thousand Steps on Jacks Mountain in  Pennsylvania was a good hike. It was long and arduous, but the view would be worth it. Six kids. Four adults. Two backpacks. The trail began with seemingly easy steps, but quickly turned into steep and narrow steps cut from large rock. With popping knees, tired legs and fear of heights prevailing, we made it a third of the way before needing to turn back.   As we began the task of getting the smaller kids down the steep steps, I made sure to point out the danger of stepping on the soil rather than the stone steps. It seemed obvious to the adults, but the kids obeyed despite feeling bothered that I gave them pointers on how to get down safer. Every few yards they needed reminders.    “Stay near the middle of the step, the edge is a bit more dangerous if you were to tumble.”   “Try to make your shoe land on the rock step, not the loose gravel and soil.”   “The drop to the next step is really long, this is a good one for you to sit down and

The Honor of Being Invited

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  We were invited to a friend’s home for dinner. It was a lovely meal with paper plates, bottled soda, wonderfully cooked food, and a sweet dessert. The conversation was enjoyable and the back-porch views were breathtaking. We’ve spent many hours in the homes of friends, but this one was something special.   You see, my friend has wanted to host people in her home for a long time, but due to some factors, had been unable to do so for many years. When she was finally able to bring someone over, she chose us. We were her honored guests, her top pick. My husband and I were quietly humbled.    During the meal and after, I kept thinking about the extreme privilege it was to share her porch that evening and it reminds me of how little we value the vulnerability offered when true hospitality is shown. But it also reminded me that we don’t often experience true hospitality. We experience the assumed cultural demands or the vis-à-vis repayment for previous moments.    True hospitality is simply

A Playground Delight

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His energy level was through the roof, so we spent some time at the playground today. He chased and slid and climbed and ran. I had received some hard news that morning, so it was nice to sit without being spoken to for a few moments. I scrolled through my phone mindlessly as I processed.    He called to me and wanted me to watch him do a cool trick. I looked up and kept a steady gaze upon him. I did not look away because I knew he would check to see if I was still watching. Every few moments he checked again. He got to the spot for the cool trick and checked once more. I never looked away. I saw him do all he wanted to show me, and although it was nothing out of the ordinary, he was so visibly pleased that I watched. His smile exploded. Then I asked him to show me more. We talked—him from the top of the play structure, me from the shaded picnic table— about each part of the playground, which slide did which turn, how the sun made this one too hot to enjoy and how that one was super ea

On Writing In Education: a model from a homeschool mom

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                                                                                                                                                 Photo by  fotografierende  on  Unsplash . Thank you. *Most of my posts are considerably shorter than the following. I'm posting this because the online magazine for which it was originally written has shut down. Scroll on by unless writing in education is your jam. Original date of publication was May 2018*       I am a product of public school education which taught a plug and play model of writing. Teachers gave sample sentences and we were to form ours similarly while trying to display our own creative abilities. This wasn’t a bad method necessarily, but rather limiting to say the least. We were taught that sentences had subjects and predicates, paragraphs had an opening sentence, two or three points and a final sentence, and that essays were built with four or five of these paragraphs. Writing was like building a retaining wall with st

Morning Mysteries

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    This moment often takes place while I’m still waking (or sleeping, let’s be honest!). Gil tries to rise before the boy because it seems our house functions remarkably different when he comes down and sees dad before anything or anyone else. He is calmer, quieter, and noticeably more settled all day. They talk about mysterious things, sometimes discuss the day ahead, and read scripture. Hopefully this habit of morning time with his father will develop into morning time with his Heavenly Father as he grows up.