What to do When You're Not Sure Where God is Leading You

What to do When You're Not Sure Where God is Leading You

Last spring, I visited a friend in California. I live in Alaska, so it took a couple plane rides and a few hours of driving to get to her. Before I arrived, I asked for her address and directions to her house. With my course clearly mapped out, I was able to find her house without a problem.

But what if, when I asked how to get her house, my friend had simply said, “It’s in California”?

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Jesus Saved Me From a Life of Self-Hate

Jesus Saved Me From a Life of Self-Hate

A couple of weeks ago I mentioned that I used to write mean things about myself in my journal. This week, I decided to get really real and share a few actual quotes.

So (deep breath), here’s a peek at what my 15-year-old self was saying:

“Why am I like this…?”

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God is Sending You Love Notes. Have You Been Noticing?

God is Sending You Love Notes. Have You Been Noticing?

Not long ago, I was driving down the road on a bright winter day when movement on the shoulder ahead caught my eye. At first I thought it might be a fox. I slowed down to take a look and quickly realized that the animal was too big to be a fox. Was it a dog…? As it trotted across the road, my heart jumped. I saw, to my shock, that it was a lynx!

I’m sure my eyes were bulging like a startled pug’s. I’ve never seen a wild lynx, and I had long been asking God to let me see one of these stealthy forest cats…

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When You Know God Loves You, But You Don't Feel It

When You Know God Loves You, But You Don't Feel It

I grew up knowing about God’s love. My pastors preached about it at church, my teachers taught about it at school, and I read about it in my Bible. But I haven’t always felt it.

In my late teens and early twenties, I struggled with the disconnect between my knowledge of God’s love and my experience of it. I started talking to God about how I felt (or rather didn’t feel) and I began praying to feel His love more…

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It's Cold Outside! Warm Your Heart With These Verses About God's Love for You

It's Cold Outside! Warm Your Heart With These Verses About God's Love for You

Happy February, ladies! I don’t know about you, but I love the month of love! At a time when we’re still being battered by winter’s icy paw, Valentine’s brings so many cozy, good feelings. I love the warm pinks and reds, the luxurious chocolates, the cheerful flowers…

I love that the days are growing longer, and after months of weak winter sun, I can actually feel a bit of heat shining through my windows…

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In the Beginning: 3 Principles From the First Year Ever to Set the Stage for Your Best Year Yet

In the Beginning: 3 Principles From the First Year Ever to Set the Stage for Your Best Year Yet

Despite being the dead of winter, January is one of my favorite months. The year lies before me as wide open as the creamy pages of my new calendar. My imagination is free to run wild. The air is full of newness, excitement, and possibilities.

I think one reason new beginnings are so exciting is that they almost always carry an element of creation…

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Holding on to Hope when Your New Year is Dogged by Disappointment

Holding on to Hope when Your New Year is Dogged by Disappointment

I hope your New Year is off to a great start!

I feel like I’ve been in a post-Christmas whirlwind, but I think finding my way back to a more normal rhythm. :)

This week, instead of my normal blog post, I’m sharing an article I wrote that was published in my local newspaper…

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The Physical, Emotional, and Relational Benefits of Keeping Gratitude Going All Year

The Physical, Emotional, and Relational Benefits of Keeping Gratitude Going All Year

 What can help you have

  • A stronger immune system

  • Increased quality and quantity of sleep

  • Decreased feelings of loneliness

  • Better relationships, including more feelings of connection and generosity

  • A better sense of self-worth

  • More feelings of  happiness and joy

  • More resistance to stress

  • Less pain

  • And greater life satisfaction? …

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When You Question Your Value, Encourage Yourself with this Truth

When You Question Your Value, Encourage Yourself with this Truth

Do you ever feel like you don’t have much to offer? Do you sometimes look at other people and feel like your talents pale in comparison?

Most of us have probably had at least a few days when we’ve felt discouraged about ourselves. Days when we’ve questioned our value and purpose. Maybe we’ve even wondered what God, or others, could ever see in us…

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What Does Jesus Smell Like?

What Does Jesus Smell Like?

Wherever I went, the smell followed. It was spicy and earthy, like patchouli oil. Though I was certain I hadn’t used any patchouli scented products that morning, after a bit of sniffing, I confirmed the scent was definitely coming from me.

As I pondered how the patchouli could have gotten there, I remembered that earlier in the day I’d hugged a friend, and I realized her fragrance had transferred to me through our embrace.

We tend to become like the people we spend time with. The closer the association, the more we pick up another’s mannerisms, patterns of speech, eating habits and even smell…

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5 Easy Ways to get God's Word into Your Day, Even when You're Super Busy

5 Easy Ways to get God's Word into Your Day, Even when You're Super Busy

Do you want to spend more time in God’s Word, but life keeps interrupting? The phone rings, the dog gets into the trash, a neighbor stops by unexpectedly…

In the busyness of life, it can be challenge to carve out quiet time. Yet, the reality remains that nourishing ourselves with God’s Word is vital to growing in faith and relationship with Him.

The good news is you don’t necessarily have to be sitting down with your Bible and a cup of tea in order to get a good dose of Scripture…

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More Important Than Breakfast

More Important Than Breakfast

Life is busy. The list of of every day commitments and necessities goes on and on: phone calls to make, clothes to launder, church events to attend. There are baby showers, doctor appointments, and birthday parties. Dishes to wash, snow to shovel, groceries to buy…

Still, in midst of it all, I rarely miss a meal…

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What's Stirring in Your Heart?

What's Stirring in Your Heart?

It's a gorgeous September day. The birch trees around my house are just starting to turn golden, and the first leaves are beginning to fall, settling on the grass as softly as feathers. Bright sunshine glows through the branches, flickering like an autumn campfire, and through the open window I can hear one my favorite sounds: the rustle of wind in leaves.

There is something so soothing about the sound of wind-tussled trees, like the caress of ocean waves on soft sand. There’s something timeless and eternal about it, something holy…

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What is Your Life Verse?

What is Your Life Verse?

Do you have a Bible verse that is particularly close to your heart? One that you aspire to live by and live up to?

One of my favorites is Jeremiah 17:7-8:

But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him.  They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit. (NIV)

I love this passage because it taps into some of my deepest values and topics I’m passionate about…

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One Secret to Connecting with God in a Deeper Way

One Secret to Connecting with God in a Deeper Way

I’ve always loved journaling. I’ve been immortalizing my thoughts in notebooks since the tender age of nine and have found it to be a great way to sort my feelings, clarify my thoughts, and process my experiences.

As a young adult, I noticed something. Whenever I went through a phase where I wasn’t journaling much, I didn’t feel as close to God…

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Worried or Frustrated? Use this Shift in Perspective to Turn Your Problems into Opportunities for Growth

Worried or Frustrated? Use this Shift in Perspective to Turn Your Problems into Opportunities for Growth

It took years of prodding, but about a year ago my husband finally persuaded me to incorporate strength training into my work out routine.

Strength training involves subjecting muscles to resistance, such as laying down and pushing yourself off the floor with your arms (aka the dreaded push-up) or lifting your arms while holding heavy weights…

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Dandelions are Reviled as Weeds, but I want to be Like One. Here’s Why.

Dandelions are Reviled as Weeds, but I want to be Like One. Here’s Why.

My husband is waging war against dandelions. And, so far, the dandelions are winning.

What started out as a patch in our lower lawn has turned into a full on invasion, and our yard is almost completely covered. Slowly but surely, like a rising tide, they creep closer and closer to the house…

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The One Encouraging Thing About Worry

The One Encouraging Thing About Worry

I don’t know about you, but when I struggle with a worry, besides feeling anxious and uncomfortable, I also often deal with guilt and disappointment because I know that a life of worry is not what God wants for us. I feel like if only I had stronger faith or was a more mature Christian I wouldn’t have these struggles…

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