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I Didn’t Choose the Writing Life

I Didn’t Choose the Writing Life

I know of a sacred place—sacred to me anyway. Walk alongside the rose bushes by my Mamaw’s dusty blue house, pass by the strawberry garden and the cherry tree. Keep going and you’ll see the pine tree my brother planted as a little boy in the middle of the blues and yellows and pinks of the flower garden. Pause to take in the peculiarity of the snapdragons and the sweet aroma of the pink roses. Through the arch where the grapevines crawl, you’ll find a little girl, singing songs to the horses on the farm across the lake. She sang “Amazing Grace” to the goats and geese long before she had a clue what it meant, making it a sweeter song when she found out at the age of twenty-one.

She also used to “write songs” in the garage and believed she’d be a big star someday. Praise the Lord she was wrong.…

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Some Women are Relieved to Miss Church on Mother’s Day

Some Women are Relieved to Miss Church on Mother’s Day

It’s my first Mother’s Day with a baby on my hip and we’re in self-isolation. I hadn’t even thought about it until others brought it to my attention. And truly, it makes no difference to me. But many women are saddened by the reality that they can’t attend church on this special day. I’ve been thinking about this holiday in years past and how hard it was at times. I was pondering what I might feel if I was still struggling with childlessness.

While some women might be sad about missing church on Mother’s Day this year, I know some of you are relieved.

This is the first year you don’t have to make the hard decision to either stay home for fear of salt being poured in your wound, or go knowing you’ll have to hide your grief until you’ve found a safe place to cry out, “how long, O Lord?”…

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Running to Our Master in Suffering

Running to Our Master in Suffering

A month ago, my husband dropped off our sweet dog, Ruby, to have surgery to remove her eye and replace it with a prosthetic. We’d tried everything in our power to avoid this surgery, but in the end, it was the best decision to ensure her greatest health and comfort. Had we left it alone, she would continue to live her life burdened by the pain that eye was causing her.

When my husband brought her home from the surgery, it was a heartbreaking sight. She shook uncontrollably from head to paw, her eyelid was swollen shut, blood emerged from her wound, she whimpered at even the slightest move, and with the cone of shame snug around her neck, she was an anxious mess.

My husband and I were in a way “sovereign” over her pain. It was we who made the decision to cause her to endure this. My husband took her to the Veterinarian.…

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When I Couldn’t Pay My Rent

When I Couldn’t Pay My Rent

Have you ever had to choose between gasoline and food? I have. Have you ever had to overdraft your account to be able to eat? I have.

As a new believer, I was entered immediately into a series of trials. I was single, healing from the heartbreak of a broken engagement, working two jobs that barely paid more than minimum wage, and not just struggling to pay my bills—failing to pay them. I couldn’t afford rent, let alone car insurance, so when I was pulled over for expired tags (something that completely slipped my mind), I had nothing to show for coverage. One court date later and I no longer had a license.

How was I supposed to pay my rent if I couldn’t drive to work?

Things were tough. I thought my life was falling apart, but truly, God was using these things to put me back together.

The Lord Provides

Looking back, I’m amazed at the ways God provided during that time.…

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Another Way Creation Groans

Another Way Creation Groans

I feel a sort of protection over the wildlife in my backyard. As a child, I imagined myself to be like a Disney princess, surrounded by wild animals. As an adult, not much has changed. Currently, there’s a mama robin tending to her nest on my house, a few baby squirrels in our pine tree, yellow finches on my bird feeder, and until yesterday, two adorable bunnies grazing on the frosted green grass each morning.

Now there’s only one. We found the other’s remains leftover from the neighborhood stray cat that’s been hanging around.

Nature.

It’s nature, but is it really natural? Death of innocent animals? The cuddly cat that becomes a predator? Hawks that swoop in to steal new life?

I’ve been studying the old story of the first garden where death didn’t exist and God’s creation was untainted. Things were perfect then—they were good then, as God declared (Genesis 1:31).…

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There’s Too Much Sin Here, Lord

There’s Too Much Sin Here, Lord

There’s too much sin here.

It keeps piling up.
It fills in the crevices;
dirties every space up.
With each layer that’s pulled back,
still more to purge.
When freedom is found,
another sin does emerge.

There’s too much sin here, Lord. Too much sin in my heart.

There’s too much struggle here.

Struggles, no fault of my own.
Sins of others,
left me broken in my core.
My mind wrestles with lies,
about things that are good.
Doubting the Creator’s words,
just like Eve would.

There’s too much struggle here, Lord. Where do I start?

There’s too much shame here.

Shame that’s well deserved.
That old serpent reminds me,
of the destruction I earned.
I gave my body to be used,
my soul to be ravished.
But instead of what I deserve,
grace on me you lavished.

There’s too much shame here, Lord. So much shame in my heart.

Sins and struggles,
for the Christian remain.…

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