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Hope that Surpasses Fear CV Lay-0ff Day:28

Hope that Surpasses Fear CV Lay-0ff Day:28

Christmas was in the rearview mirror, and the new year was only a few days away. My social media newsfeed contained post after post laced with excitement for 2020. I, on the other hand, felt complete dread. No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t get excited about a fresh new year. 

Things came to a fever-pitch one evening as I was preparing dinner for my family. As I stood with my back to my boys grating cheese at my kitchen counter, tears ran down my cheeks. I felt so anxious, I could hardly speak. No matter how hard I tried, I could not shake the feeling that another tragedy was imminent. 

Tender Mercies in the Morning CV Lay-Off Day: 26

Tender Mercies in the Morning CV Lay-Off Day: 26

This morning, the birds serenaded me out of bed extra early. Grabbing my Bible and journal, I crept downstairs. After opening the blinds by my favorite blue chair, I headed to the kitchen for my first cup of coffee. None of this is ordinary, because 99% of the time, Tim wakes up first.

I had just a few minutes in the Word before I heard movement upstairs. Soon, our resident early riser, Luke, joined me. As he snuggled in next to me in my chair, his little hand was soon caressing the onion skin pages of my Bible that lay open on my lap.

Quarantined Easter CV Lay-Off Day: 24

Quarantined Easter CV Lay-Off Day: 24

Tomorrow is Easter, and like most everyone else in America, we won’t be gathering together with our church family.

Since COVID-19, we’ve tried as a family to preserve our Sunday mornings for a time of worship. Although I don’t make the boys wear their Sunday clothes, I do get myself put together, and then we all meet in the living room. Our church sends out the bulletin ahead of time, and Tim prints them for us to follow along. Together, we read through the liturgy, and then, watch our pastor’s sermon on Youtube.

As we listen to the sermon, the two youngest boys become restless just like they do on a

Waiting for One Day CV Lay-Off Day:22

Waiting for One Day CV Lay-Off Day:22

I was surprised by the fresh waves of grief that came rolling in this week. Yesterday, they hit so hard that I put myself to bed early. It’s been two years and eight months without Justin, and I can still hardly believe he’s gone.

We’d been in our house one year to the day that we lost Justin. But, there are still traces of him everywhere. Like the way he’d stand in our doorway at night with his hands on his sides, telling us about a girl he liked or a funny story from work.

I remember him half-asleep, sitting in the overstuffed recliner in his bedroom, reading a big fat theological book before he went to bed. In the mornings, my heart rejoiced when I’d see his Tabletalk magazine and Bible laying open on his bed bookmarked to where he’d left off.

For God So Loved the World  CV Lay-Off Day: 20

For God So Loved the World CV Lay-Off Day: 20

A few nights ago, Tim and I went on a mini-date. We took a long drive, mobile ordered Chipotle (my favorite!), and then sat in our truck and ate our meal in the parking lot. It was absolutely delightful. Somehow, we got on the subject about what it was like when I received my first invitation to attend church.

If my memory serves me correctly, I was a freshman in high school, and I was spending the night at my friend Tami’s house. One of her family friends went to a little church across town, and she asked me if I would like to come along with her, to which I promptly responded, “No, thank-you.” At the time, I couldn’t imagine anything more boring than going to church. However, when she mentioned a group of cute boys who were in the youth group, I was quickly persuaded.

Expectant Waiting: CV Lay-Off Day: 19

Expectant Waiting: CV Lay-Off Day: 19

About nine months or so after Tim and I started dating, it became apparent that I was one lovesick girl. Each night, after he dropped me off at my apartment, I would go to my bedroom, lay on my bed, and cry my eyes out. I hated for him to leave, and I could hardly wait to see him again. I know it sounds dramatic, but I was head over heels. Each night, I poured out my heart to the Lord, telling Him, “Lord, I just wanted to marry that man.”

That’s when I discovered Lord Psalm 40:1, “I waited patiently for the LORD; he turned to me and heard my cry.” 

Family Matters CV: Lay-off Day: 17

Family Matters CV: Lay-off Day: 17

This evening, right around dinner time (it’s always dinner time for us, isn’t it?) the tension was a bit thick in our home. It felt like I spent at least half of the day disciplining my boys, and putting out fires. Two of my sons (who I just corrected) were jumping on the trampoline and saw me through the kitchen window. They smiled big and waved, and that’s when I realized that I was clenching my teeth. 

Ten Things I am Thankful for Today| CV Lay-off Day:16

Ten Things I am Thankful for Today| CV Lay-off Day:16

Sometimes, when we are in the midst of a storm, it’s easy to become weighed down with discouragement. At the beginning of April, my sister began choosing one thing that she was thankful for each day and then shared it on social media. Isn’t that…

When Fear Comes Knocking CV Lay-Off Day: 15

When Fear Comes Knocking CV Lay-Off Day: 15

Over the last two and a half years, I have struggled through gigantic waves of fear and anxiety. Not too long ago, I was waiting for my daughter to get home from work. I had dinner on the table when I realized she hadn’t made it back yet. I called her to see if she was running late; her phone went to voicemail. A few minutes later, I sent her a text asking if everything was okay. 

By this time, I served dinner, and the boys were full of conversation about the day. Though I appeared calm on the outside, my insides were in complete panic mode. If you know the story of losing Justin, you understand my train of thought. 

As I sat at the dinner table, I was not present, but imagining every worst-case scenario. As the minutes ticked by, a lump sat in my throat like cement. Finally, I whispered to my husband, 

Operation Keep Mama Sane: CV Lay-off Day:13

Operation Keep Mama Sane: CV Lay-off Day:13

It was meltdown central at my house today. Tears were abundant, emotions ran high, and this mama right here was on the verge of losing her ever-loving mind! 

I have a feeling I’m not the only one experiencing this craziness.

In all seriousness, it was a tough day. We started off on a good trajectory, but with each outburst, my patience dwindled, and I grew more irritable.

You know the old saying, “You can catch more flies with honey”? Well, there’s a Proverb that says it even better, “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” (Proverbs 15:1)

I feel like I need to plaster that verse all over my house, right. Ultimately, I need the Spirit to give me the grace to respond with gentleness instead of reacting out of my irritation.