faith

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No Words

Lately I have been thinking about times when there are no words.

I have opened this page up to write a blog almost daily for the last couple of weeks, but there have been no words.

I mean, sure there are words running around in my head, but nothing coherent or formed that I could put down.

Life is busy. Life is crazy. Life is wonderful and hard all at once.

I have been re-watching Dawson’s Creek. Yes, I know how pathetic that sounds. Mike and I watched the entire series when it aired on television (don’t take away his man-card, we were newlyweds and I wanted to watch it)¬†and while scrolling through Hulu a few weeks back I saw that it was among the offerings of shows available to me with the touch of a button. In a moment of weakness, I pushed play.

One of the things that I have (again) noticed about this show is the massive amount of words that pour out of these (supposedly) teenage kids. Always talking, analyzing and waxing eloquent about this, that, and the other circumstances in their lives. Rarely do you see any of them in a place where they have no words.

And while part of me thinks that is no where close to reality, another part of me realizes that we often talk too much. But the difference is we talk about nothing, because we have no words to really talk about the hard stuff. We can find lots of words to talk about the stuff that doesn’t much matter. We can talk about the weather, how busy we are in general terms, how we don’t like this or that about home/work/school/church/community, and what our plans our for the weekend. But when it really comes down to it, the words that we need to speak stay unspoken.

When struggling with yet another bout of depression, we don’t speak the words, “help,” to anyone.

When experiencing deep pain and sorrow, we put on a happy face and answer, “fine” when asked how we are doing.

When watching friends go through the pain of divorce, we don’t know what to say, so we say nothing.

When seeing others grieving loss of one kind or another, we allow them to suffer in silence for one reason or another.

When witnessing the downward spiral and loss of faith of a community member, we stay silent.

When observing someone making poor choices, we choose not to talk with them about it.

The thing is, in those times that there are no words, sometimes words are exactly what is needed. Not surface conversation. Not platitudes that make empty promises. But words that acknowledge the truth. Because, you see, something happens when you acknowledge the truth and speak it out.

Healing can begin.

Help can arise.

Hope can be proclaimed.

Comfort can be given.

Faith can be renewed.

Love can be shown.

Let’s work on learning how to speak the words that need to be spoken, the hard words, the words that don’t want to come, and the ones that bring truth, healing, help, hope, comfort, faith and love into our lives and the lives of those around us.

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The first of this year has been a rough one already. I have friends that have experienced unforeseeable tragedy, and I hurt for them. Just today, I heard of another tragic happening affecting a family I love, and I have been reminding myself all day that we don’t have the answers or understand why, and in this fallen world, filled with evil, God is still present.

This is my sermon from this past Sunday, and I just feel like I should share it today.

Take a listen and let God’s word bring you hope today.

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Inspiration

Parenting is hard. It is constant work. You can’t let it slide. You can’t assume it is happening. You have to work to be on your toes and aware of what is happening with your kids.

And we all fall short of that ideal. Often.

Some days we are lucky if we get them out of bed and off to school, never mind making sure homework is done, they have had a healthy breakfast and they remembered to brush their teeth.

But the purpose in me blogging for 31 Days this month isn’t to make it seem like I have it all together when it comes to parenting. It isn’t that I have all the answers. It isn’t that I think I am doing a fabulous job in every possible area. It is really that I want to share my experiences and hopefully inspire someone to take that extra step, put in that extra work, and in the process, that I will also be inspired to be better and do better.

This is how it is in every area of my life that I put out there on my blog.

I talk about depression in hopes that someone else can get the help that they need.

I talk about health and fitness so others can find encouragement to get healthy.

I talk about giving to others, so that someone might be inspired to give of themselves.

I talk about music because of its ability to lift us up and move us forward.

I talk about faith because it is the ultimate inspiration in my life.

I truly want to inspire YOU to be the best YOU, the one created and loved by God.

Put in the work, be inspired by others, and be the best parent you can possibly be to the children that God has given to you.

You can do it. I believe in you.

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Faith Priorities

Faith. From the time I was two, faith was a priority in the life of my family.

We went to church every time it was open – Sunday morning, Sunday night, Wednesday night.

My sisters and I have been examples in Dad’s sermons more times than we can count.

It didn’t matter what we did on Saturday night or how late we stayed out, we were at church on Sunday morning.

When I went off to college, needless to say, I wasn’t as faithful in my church attendance. I didn’t quite understand the necessity.

But it wasn’t long before I changed my tune and began attending regularly again.

And then I became a parent and I realized exactly what my parents realized all those years ago.

As parents, we set the priorities for the home. Strong faith and a relationship with God through Jesus Christ has to be at the top of our priority list. One of the ways we do this is by making it a priority to be in church regularly for worship.

In this day and age, there are so many things that are vying to be at the top of our list of priorities, and what I have seen happen in the church is sad. Ball games, tumbling or other sports meets/competitions, camping trips, and even late Saturday nights are taking priority over worship attendance. Somehow a shift has occurred and instead of making worship a priority, we have started making our children’s “success” in other areas a priority.

The problem with that is simply this: if they don’t learn early how to make the Lord a priority in their lives, then He may never be a priority in their lives.

And for a parent who loves the Lord and loves her children, that would be a devastating tragedy for my children.

So in addition to other things we do at home, we will be in worship each Sunday morning on a regular basis. This is a priority in our lives. And as parents, we will show our children that it needs to be a priority in their lives as well.

 

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