You want me to talk with a sex worker?! A few months ago, I received an email from Greg Sukert of Anchored North. He wanted to know if I would be willing to have a conversation with a sex worker on their new podcast, Honest Discourse, Why me? was literally my first question back to him. I’m no expert in the sex industry. But he said . . . More
I saw it again this morning on social media: Another “Christian celebrity” spinning their divorce announcement as a loving deed inspired by altruistic motivation for their “dear friend.” I don’t buy it. Divorce is not altruistic (“unselfishly concerned for or devoted to the welfare of [your spouse]).” This loving facade is nothing less than a lie straight from the pit of hell. More
It can be a bit shocking to our ears to hear that favoritism is a sin. We tend to play favorites regularly and almost subconsciously:
- Sizing others up
- Comparing each other against worldly standards
- Asking, “What’s in this relationship for me?”
My husband, Trevor, and I have a bad track record when it comes to our weekly date night. Often we return home unhappier than when we left. If you can relate, here are five date night problems and solutions for you. But first, a story . . . More
Are you currently in—or considering—entering a long-distance dating relationship? If so, this interview “Dating at a Distance” did with me will encourage you in your own relationship. Enjoy! More
You may have heard—or believe—that your husband is your spiritual leader. But I wonder what that means to you. Based on this belief, I subconsciously unbuckled my seatbelt when I entered marriage. I climbed out of the driver’s seat in my relationship with God and took a seat in the back of the proverbial car. I looked to the front seat where my new husband, Trevor, sat and waited for him to lead us in daily time in God’s Word and prayer. More
Why do I write? This is something I had never answered . . . until Cyber Monday. That’s when I splurged on Michael Hyatt’s “Get Published” course. (Yes, I’m already a published author, but that doesn’t mean my wheels haven’t been spinning in the mud for a while now.) In Michael’s first session, he asks, “Why do you want to write?” Here are eleven reasons why I write (and plan to continue), in no particular order. More
Some men don’t care if their home is clean or messy. Not my hubby. He grew up with a mom who could challenge anyone to the Heavyweight Cleaning Champion of the World title. Trevor is used to a spotless home (and I really do mean spotless). Mess stresses him out. But his high expectations for a clean house stress me out. Sounds like a killer combination, huh? Yes, I’ve shot lots of heated words his way over this volatile subject.
The Clean Freak I Married
You know from my first book how for thirty plus years I ached for a pair of strong arms to hold me close. In God’s extravagant kindness, He granted that gift. However, in all those years of pining, I never gave a thought to what might accompany such a gift.
Turns out, marriage involves more than being adored by a man. With a husband come kids, and that husband and those kids must live in a house, and that house must be cleaned, and those hubby and those kids must be fed and clothed with freshly laundered clothes . . . again and again and again.
I was not prepared for that kind of service. In one childish-sounding journal entry I spewed,
“Cleaning is stupid. As soon as you finish, it’s messy again. It’s futile . . . It’s not creative . . . I hate it.”
Truth be told, I thought myself above such dull tasks as dusting and mopping and window washing. After serving in women’s ministry for well over a decade, these sorts of tasks felt like the demotion of the century.
My Cleaning Conundrum
Now, lest you think him a chauvinist pig, let me clear the record. Trevor does pitch in and help me clean. If it weren’t for him, our fridge, oven, and floors would never get a deep cleaning. But we’ve worked out a deal of sorts.
See, he’s handy, and I’m not. We have been—and still are—in the middle of a home renovation. So anytime there is something I can do, I try to do it myself rather than asking him for help, in order to free him up for the tasks that only he can accomplish.
In Search of Answers on Why a Clean Home Matters
There was simply no way around it. I needed to clean, and I didn’t want to hate every minute of it for the rest of my life. I desperately needed some big questions answered. Is there any redeeming value to cleaning? In light of eternity, why does cleaning matter?
By the grace of God, I finally stumbled across the answer in Courtney Reissig’s book, Glory in the Ordinary: Why Your Work in the Home Matters to God.
First, she showed me how housework is connected to the two greatest commandments of loving God and loving neighbor. My closest neighbors are my husband and kids, and work in the house is for them. This was an “a-ha!” for me:
“Laundry is for people to wear. Food is for people to be nourished. Clean floors are for people to crawl around on. Dishes are for people to eat off. The people and the physical work of the home are not in competition. They are two sides of the same coin. . . . The physical work of the home exists for the physical people in the home.”
I was wrecked (in the best kind of way).
Another paradigm shift I experienced from reading her book is that work is not about my personal fulfillment; it is for the good of my neighbor. How have I missed that for all these years?! I wondered. Courtney quoted Martin Luther more than once in this regard:
“If you find yourself in a work by which you accomplish something good for God, or the holy, or yourself, but not for your neighbor alone, then you should know that that work is not a good work.”
Keep the Whole Law with a Clean Home
Ever since I read these truths, things have been changing in my house and my heart. As long as I keep the big picture in view, I don’t resent the poop stains I have to magically remove from my son’s shorts. I don’t mutter about the smooshed grapes I have to clean off the floor. I don’t cry over the onions I have to chop for supper (well, actually I do, but for a different reason!).
Life is too short not to love my closest neighbors with a clean house, clean clothes, and food on the table. Do I do it perfectly? Not even close. But I keep working hard at it, because in this small, ordinary way, I can actually fulfill the whole law (Galatians 5:14).
Thanks to Crossway’s generosity, I’m giving away five copies of Courtney’s book, Glory in the Ordinary. If you think you or someone you know could benefit from reading it, enter here.
You guys, we survived potty training! The first day was exhilarating. (And no, I never imagined using those two words in the same sentence!) More
What would you do if you weren’t afraid?
What Would You Do If You Weren’t Afraid?
That’s the question Typology podcast host, Ian Morgan Cron, posed in an episode I listened to yesterday. I’ve heard a variation of that question before, and it’s such a powerful one! Ian mentioned that he has started a list of what he would do if he weren’t afraid, so I started my list yesterday.
I imagine that when Ian posed that question, he had in mind big feats, like:
- Climb Mt. Everest,
- Write that book, or,
- Start that business.
If I Weren’t Afraid, I Would . . .
But when I face that question head on, ordinary tasks come to mind:
- Pick up a paintbrush,
- Create a Facebook event page,
- Hang a picture frame on a wall,
- Cut a piece of wood with a machine,
- Figure out why the video isn’t working on my computer,
My lack of confidence isn’t a new revelation; marriage to Trevor has revealed just how dependent and helpless I’ve become. (He’s always trying on new hobbies for size; watching YouTube videos and then renovating our house . . . amazing!)
Thankfully, Trevor continues to encourage me, “You can do it.” And slooooowly I’ve started to respond, “I know.”
Goodbye Fear, Hello Freedom
In fact, the other day I was thinking, I’ve given birth. Twice! Oh, and yes, I’ve written a book. But, I’ve given birth . . . twice! In light of that feat, I sell myself far too short. And I’m finally fed up with playing the role of helpless damsel.
So while Trevor practiced his sermon last night (he’s preaching on Mark 14:1-11 this Sunday), I pulled the Knackwurst out of the fridge, fired up the grill, and went for it.
I wonder if you can relate. You don’t have to tell me your answer. But do yourself a favor and ask the question of yourself. What would you do if you weren’t afraid? Are you selling yourself short? Are you walking in the freedom Christ purchased for you, or are you still living as a slave to fear?
(Happy Independence Day, by the way!)