Archive for July, 2008

Tuesday’s Child

Posted: July 29, 2008 in Uncategorized
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I just read that weird little poem yesterday – Monday’s child is fair of face, Tuesday’s child is full of grace. Today I find myself hoping for so much grace for so many children who are on my heart. My five kids, yes…but also OUR 143 million kids. They belong to all of us. God promises to be a father to the fatherless and He desires to use us to do that…I’m absolutely convinced of it. It is nearly impossible to deny that the Bible gives ownership of the parentless children of the world to…us. The church. You and me. Even if you have no kids of your own, you are a mom or a dad. But it’s easy to forget about our kids around the world.

So Tuesdays are going to be dedicated to reminding those who stumble upon my blog that these kids exist by sharing, not the emotion of the issue, but the facts of the issue.

  • There are 143,000,000 orphans in the world. This number includes those in the foster care system in America.
  • Every 15 seconds, another child becomes an AIDS orphan – in Africa alone (the greatest number of orphans, however, is actually in Asia.)
  • Every year, over 14 million orphans age out of the system – that’s one every 2.2 seconds – with no place to call home, no education or job in sight and never having had a real home.

Overwhelming? Yep. But please direct your attention to the beautiful gal to your right. She is the newest arrival at Kings Kids Village in Nairobi where she will find love, hope, Jesus, good food, an education and rest. The 143 million number is overwhelming to me, but you know what? So is this picture.

Psalm 10:14,



Deer vs. Durango

Posted: July 27, 2008 in Uncategorized

When we were on our way home from the beach, we rounded the corner on a busy highway and were met by the terrified faces of three deer – a mama and two tiny babies.

Please note for the record: I hate deer. They eat my flowers and mess up my yard and they are not beautiful to me – they are supersized vermin. However, these little baby ones were pretty darn cute.

Back to my story: the sudden arrival of our car into their Saturday morning stroll, scared the fawns and caused them to first freeze in the road and then to wander right back into our lane. We were completely stopped at this point, just watching them try to figure out their travel plans, and then the funniest thing happened. The mama deer totally stared us down! She moved our direction while her babies scurried like mad behind her and I swear to you she was ready to body slam our SUV had we made one move toward them. This made us laugh because A. She wouldn’t have won that fight and B. If she’s so protective, maybe she oughta get her babies off the road, yes?

This month I’ve been frustrated with the passion level in my life. I’m normally exuberantly in love with the Word and with time with God, but recently I’ve seriously struggled to maintain my energy and focus. And I’ve been feeling like I just haven’t been finding cool stuff in the Word like I used to. It’s been frustrating, but not frustrating enough, you know? If it were MORE frustrating, I would have fixed it sooner.

So, this morning as I opened the pages of the living and active Word of God, there were about a hundred things that jumped out into my heart. Isaiah 50-52amazing. Psalm 92incredible. 2 Peter 1life changing. I do not exaggerate here…these three portions of scripture could feed a starving nation. As I was journaling on the passages, I realized this: the mama deer is both brilliant and bumbling and I need to be more and less like her. Every day in the Word, I know that little seeds fall and are planted. But I live in a high-traffic area where it’s pretty hard to keep little ones alive if you aren’t willing to be absolutely vicious with the giant distractions that come rolling through. Two things the Holy Spirit very kindly mentioned:

  1. Be ruthless…rude…yay, verily, even mean-spirited with the things that are vying to dilute or destroy the word in your life. For me, I can’t do secular music – not because it’s evil, but because it’s like a minivan heading down the highway, aimed at the newly-birthed life in me. Internet? Same deal to some degree. Just two examples of a million other things that are hungry to turn revelation into roadkill if I’m not vigilant.
  2. Don’t – for goodness and Bambi’s sake – try to raise babies on the freeway. During the summer I don’t have to take kids to school, so I’ve been able to sleep later in the mornings and still have the same amount of time to do my “quiet time” (for unknown reasons, that term makes me laugh and I always feel the need to put it in quotations) before work. However, the trouble? It doesn’t work for me. The traffic starts rolling through my life by about 7:00 a.m., and so to really be with Him in a quiet, grassy area…to lay down by still waters and take a long drink…it has to happen earlier than that.

I would have liked to not post this today. I’d like for you to think my life is together and terrific all the time. But for me, this is like a public journal entry that will help me stay honest and focused on what I know works in my life. If it works for you as well, that’s great, but I would never want to impose my way on your way…I just include you in my journey because I like the company.

Excited for fresh life (but still not crazy about deer),


Psalm 19

Posted: July 23, 2008 in Uncategorized

God’s glory is on tour in the skies, God-craft on exhibit across the horizon. Madame Day holds classes every morning, Professor Night lectures each evening.

Their words aren’t heard, their voices aren’t recorded, but their silence fills the earth: unspoken truth is everywhere.

God makes a huge dome for the sun – a superdome! The morning sun’s a new husband leaping from his honeymoon bed, the daybreaking sun an athlete racing to the tape.

That’s how God’s Word vaults across the skies from sunrise to sunset, melting ice, scorching deserts, warming hearts to faith.

Every year we stay at a vacation home that is positioned to enjoy a front-row seat at a rock star sunset every single night. The first couple of nights it’s an amazing experience. We all gather at the window…take a million pictures…ooh, and ahh and worship God for this great gift. Night after night: same sunset – waning response. By the end of the week our general attitude is: Sunset? Seen it. I was thinking this morning as I looked through the pictures, how many times I overlook or undervalue the consistent gifts of God in my life. Every morning I wake up next to the best man I’ve ever known. I go to sleep – he’s still with me. In a world where mom’s are agonizing over kids gone astray, I am in love with five who are filled with hope, purpose, health and love for their world. Every day, I go to a job where I am paid to talk about God, in a country where I am free to do that job without fear. Hard to believe – given all this extravagant goodness – that I would ever worry or despair for even one minute over the price of gas. The covenant of the sunset reminds me of the outrageous gifts bursting through the seams of my life every day and every night. He is good. I am thankful.

Paying more attention,


Seriously, friends, it’s going to happen. I really AM going to have to return to the real world, and I’m going to remember how to write in complete sentences. Until that happens, I’m thrilled to recommend the best posts I’ve read by some of the coolest up-and-coming thinkers that I know. Today – the lovely Nicolette brings us a little something that rocked my world about God raising people from the dead.

Sandcastles are for squares,


The Beachification of Joe

Posted: July 21, 2008 in Uncategorized

As I mentioned Friday, we are living the dream this week, here at the beach which we love. We come here a couple of times a year to relax, have fun and be with Jesus because – as you know – Jesus lives MORE at the ocean than anywhere else (2 Theopholis 3:9)

Josiah loves the ocean too. This is about 22 seconds after our arrival. He approaches to give it a friendly greeting:

“Hello, Ocean! I have returned!”

And the great Pacific – not to be out-greeted – waves “hello” right back.

Happy Monday,


P.S. I’m pretty solidly entrenched in vacation mode. If you tire of picture of my kids and sand and long for something of meaning and significance, jump on over to Brent’s fantastic new blog, The Field Experience.

Today is the day that we pack up the family and the Winnebago and roll on out of here.

Except there is no Winnebago. Just my shrinking family (only my two youngest can go this time) and a head full of vacation dreams.

Before I go, I wanted to mention that I received remarkable response to the posts on faith last week. Emails and phone calls and even some conversations at the grocery store made me realize again that we’re all engaged in the same essential fight. We’re all trying to get this right and to serve a God we cannot see in a way that makes Him happy and proud that we are His. I’ve talked with people who are believing for big stuff and small stuff and for the stuff that seems impossible. I’ve talked with those who are weary from warfare, or just weary from walking and I can totally relate to each of those conditions.

Here’s what I know: faith pleases God. Whether or not you have seen the “results” that you feel could prove the quantity or quality of your faith is not the issue. Any time that you have ever said, “I believe”…any time you have ever felt His presence or turned His direction to find hope for a friend or for a failure or for your future…any time you have ever taken a step out of safety and into His arms, then you, my friend, are a pleasure to Him. A delight to His Dad-heart. And He will be found by you.

Delighted to be Ditching Dodge,


Travel the World

Posted: July 18, 2008 in Uncategorized

I’ve been inspired recently to brush up on my geography. And by “brush up”, I mean “learn how to locate anything at all outside of Oregon.” Someone told me about this site and it sounded…how can I say this? Boring. But today I tried it and it’s totally addicting like Cheetos and Jon & Kate+8! You have to try it. Please? Just once won’t hurt. All your friends are trying it. You can quit anytime you want.

But be warned. As soon as you click this button, your day is shot. Ready? Here it is!

Happy traveling,