Showing posts from May, 2011

We remember the price of freedom

Today, on Memorial Day, we remember ... the service and sacrifices of those who paid the price for the good of others.
We owe much to those who have sacrificed time, comfort and sometimes their lives. 
We continue to live in freedom  because of those who are willing to serve.  
Thank you.

Does remembering the sacrifices of others provoke a response from you? If so, what?

Books: Helping others can help us get through hard times

In his book, The Hidden Gifts of Helping: How the Power of Giving, Compassion and Hope Can Get Us Through Hard Times, Stephen G. Post weaves personal experiences with scientific research, philosophy and spiritual principles in a discussion of how helping others brings benefits.

Post knows what he is talking about, personally and professionally. He has a long list of credentials, degrees, awards, and publications in the field. His personal and professional life regularly keeps him in practice teaching, advocating and modeling a helping ethic. His family members also follow his lead. Post shares the stories of how he and his family helped others during and after a difficult move from Chicago to New York in 2008, after 20 years in Chicago. Post's personal narrative serves as a thread that ties altruistic concepts together and underscore his theme.

Although the basic premise of the book is not new, this subject is timely during these recessionary times and worth repeating.

At time…

Stepping through yesterday, today and beyond

Our Lauren graduates today with a master's degree. 
Yesterday     Lauren worked hard to reach this milestone. She invested money, hard-earned money, yet-to-be-earned money. Money well invested in her future.   Lauren invested long hours, week after week, year after year, to complete classes, internships, and to master information and pass tests -- all this and more to fulfill what was required of her.     She did it. She did all she had to to reach this point. She did it one task at a time, one day at a time, over and over. She kept trudging, sometimes skipping, on the journey to today. 
Today    So, today we celebrate Lauren's accomplishments. Congratulations, Lauren! We're so proud of you. 
And beyond
   The journey is not over. More milestones wait just beyond our sight....

What milestone are you nearing? What keeps you going?

Thin places allow glimpses of God

Pressing into Thin Places: Encouraging the Heart Toward God, by Margaret Harrell Wills, Ed.D., is like a gentle breeze scented with hope that draws readers close to the heart of God.

In her book, Wills serves as a reliable guide on a meditative journey. She uses vivid and sometimes personal anecdotes, original poetry, and scripture -- all serve to encourage readers.

This small book is best read in a quiet room so time can slow down and attention can rest and linger on its time-proven truths. You may want to mute a cell phone or TweetDeck.

Thin places allow glimpses of God
In her book Wills shares glimpses of God at work in the world. She writes of difficult situations, a death of a child, brokenness and discouragement. She shares how we who follow Jesus and seek God may find a thin place, a time "when we feel especially close to God, where for a moment the spiritual and natural worlds intersect and narrow into a thin place, a place of sudden, momentary awareness of the deep pres…

What are you doing to protect your marriage?

Michael Hyatt, chairman of the board of Thomas Nelson, often shares useful tips and information in his blog. He also asks great questions. Today was no exception. Hyatt's thoughtful blog post "What Are You Doing to Protect your Marriage?" provoked a variety of responses.

This was my contribution to the discussion:

Here are ten things that help to keep our marriage healthy. (I'll speak mostly for me.)

1. I'm growing in my faith relationship in the goodness, provision and love of God. This is foundational for growing who I am and what I bring to the relationship.

2. I'm practicing faith, trust and love in my husband and our marriage.

3. I'm committed to my husband and our relationship. We've made a public commitment during the marriage ceremony 30+ years ago. I've restated that commitment to him privately at different times through the years.

4. We practice good communication skills.

5. We cultivate respect for each other in attitudes, choic…

For Writers

Treasure hunting

As children, my sister and I enjoyed collecting sandy treasures. One December when bills overwhelmed my single-mother's budget, we decorated our Christmas tree with strings of shells, popcorn and cranberries. I was six and have seen many trees since, but it is still one of the most beautiful trees I've ever seen.

Recycling and price-careful shopping have become more popular during this recession. Concerns about employment, rising costs of everything from gas to food have combined with concern for the environment. So green thinking includes not only recycling newspapers, cans, bottles, and children's clothing, but also many other items now.

This week we've been shopping at the beach resorts on the East Coast in Delaware and Maryland. Outlet stores and grocery stores have been busy, but thrift stories have been busier.
Treasures abound for those who are willing to shift through decades of cast off items in various forms, styles and conditions.
For those planning on shoppi…

Book: Pressing into Thin Places

This press release details a book worth reading when it becomes available soon:

Recognizing the “Thin Places” in Our Lives Pressing into Thin Places leads hurting readers to a place where hope is found
Is there sustaining comfort to be found for the suffering, perhaps flailing, faithful? Dr. Margaret Wills, Ed.D, asserts that there is, and in her book, Pressing into Thin Places: Encouraging the Heart toward God (Brown Christian Press), she invites questioning, thinking, and hurting readers to recognize glimpses of wonder and to draw strength and find rest in the presence of a loving God.
Dr. Wills knows from her own experiences that life is not simple and that we all need encouraging words and reasons to hang on to hope. She offers these in abundance in this deeply personal, beautiful, and thoughtful work that summons authenticity and contemplation while soothing the dark night of the soul with kindness and truth. With transparency and refreshing gentleness, Wills tackles universal fears…