I remember being a little kid and getting something from the claw machine arcade game. A miracle, I know. But it wasn’t the item that I wanted to get. After thinking about it, I had an idea. I gave the toy to my sister—kind, right?—and I tried again, completely confident that God would help me … More Because He gave His life, you can change yours.
A young man was stationed to an infantry battalion in Hawaii and his commander, Thomas U. Greer, took his battalion on a week-long, grueling exercise up the volcanic rock in the Kahuku Mountains. The last day of the training exercise came, and the soldiers were all excited to get back home and go to the … More “If you are on the right path, it will always be uphill.”
There was once a frog who got stuck in a large bucket in a barn. Try as he might, he couldn’t jump out. The frog kept jumping. A while later, a farmer came and used the bucket to milk the cows, but it only filled the bucket up halfway. The frog despaired. His bad situation … More “Adversities are temporary. What is permanent is what we become by the way we react to them.”
A root out of dry ground (Isaiah 53:2). I love this imagery for Christ— Him being like a tender plant that received nothing life-sustaining from his environment. The plant whose chance of survival is zero. No one expected it there. It was set up to fail. It certainly isn’t fair. And yet, it thrived. Isaiah … More “We can thrive and bloom if we are rooted in our love of the Savior.”
Every year at a state fair, there was a contest for the best grown corn. And every year, the same farmer won. A reporter interviewed the award-winning farmer and asked how he grew such high quality corn year after year. The farmer said he shared his corn seed with his neighbors. The reporter was shocked. … More “Tremendous happiness and peace of mind are the result of loving service to others. Nobody can live fully and happily who lives only unto himself or herself.”
A man in jeans and a t-shirt played his violin outside of a Washington D.C. subway station. The man’s name? Joshua Bell. A master violinist dressed in street clothes. His violin cost around 3.5 million dollars. The songs he played in that subway station were some of the most beautiful and complex pieces to be … More “As we are spiritually awake and alert, we see His hand across the world and we see His hand in our own personal lives.”
The most devastating engineering accident in history happened in Ancient Rome in 27 AD. A man named Altilius built the Fidenae Amphitheatre for gladiator fights using cheap materials and a poor foundation. The result? According to the most trusted source, “50,000 men were maimed or crushed to death in that disaster.” Ultimately, the structure failed … More “It was not the nails that kept the Savior hanging on the cross, it was His love for us.”
I was a sophomore in high school and I had just led my team to a cross country state championship. I felt invincible, like I could do anything. Then, a few weeks later during basketball practice, I did a cross over and felt a sharp pain in my knee. I looked down and my knee … More “Leave the broken, irreversible past in God’s hands, and step out into the invincible future with Him.”
When asked to paint the ceiling of the Vatican’s Sistine Chapel, Michelangelo initially refused, saying he was a sculptor, not a painter. Before George Washington was inaugurated as the first president of the United States, he wrote, “I greatly apprehend that my countrymen will expect too much from me.” John Steinbeck wrote, “I am assailed … More When you do your part, the Lord adds His power to your efforts.
My four-year-old son has been doggedly searching for his little Bakugan toy for two days now—under beds, under couch cushions, in the storage room, etc. Yesterday, he prayed that he would find it. After his prayer as he hopped down the stairs of the basement to search some more he said, “I wonder if God … More Peace comes through Christ, not a specific result.
A woman was expecting her second child, Stephen, and learned at 20 weeks there were severe complications. She was nervous but had a very vivid and spiritual confirmation: “Everything will be fine.” VERY clear. The next few days after his delivery were a blur. As the days progressed, it seemed there was a new complication … More “Do not get discouraged. Things will work out.”
Something absolutely magical to me is seeing things swirling and catching the sunlight in the wind. Flower blossoms, cotton, leaves—all of it is breathtaking to me. One day, I was on a walk and talking on the phone. I was frustrated and spent the whole time venting about the person who had hurt me. Suddenly, … More “Joy has little to do with the circumstances of our lives and everything to do with the focus of our lives.”
There was once a scholar who went to a Zen master to be taught. The Zen master happily agreed. But each time he tried to share his knowledge, the scholar would interrupt him with his own opinion. Knowing he wasn’t getting through, the Zen master asked the scholar if he would like some tea. He … More Humility isn’t thinking less of ourselves, but thinking of ourselves less.
One morning before school, my son had a melt down that, in the rush of getting him out the door, I didn’t feel that I handled correctly. It was a tricky situation though, and I didn’t really know what the right thing would have been. Frustrated, I prayed after dropping him off, wanting to know … More “Blessings come not so much because of our abilities, but because of our choices.”
There is a well-loved story about a man who is walking along the beach when he sees a boy throwing starfish in the water. He asks the boy why he is doing it, and the boy explains that it is low tide—and if he doesn’t, the starfish will die. The man explains to the boy … More “As we come into Him, God will come to our rescue, whether to heal us or to give us strength to face any situation.”
A woman named Jen Hatmaker made an observation that I love, “In the wild, when a mama elephant is giving birth, all the other female elephants in the herd back around her in formation. They close ranks so that the delivering mama can not be seen in the middle. […] They send a clear signal … More “We are here to help, lift, and rejoice with each other as we try to become our very best selves.”
I was cutting multiple onions yesterday with a blunt knife and pretty much immediately started crying on onion number one. I tried to blink through it—but it was stinging so bad that I briefly contemplated how much the recipe actually needed onions. In a moment of desperation, inspiration hit: I moved the cutting board to … More “Choosing repentance is choosing change.”
Did you know that lemons are the unnatural result of crossbreeding a citron and a bitter orange? Meaning, life never gave us lemons. We created them all by ourselves. I think there is powerful symbolism in that. Adam and Eve created a bitter experience by choosing to eat the fruit… the Lord telling Eve, “I … More “If the bitter cup does not pass, drink it and be strong, trusting in happier days ahead.”
A couple years ago we didn’t have a bath at our house, so I would just throw on a swimsuit and shower with my kids. One day, I was in the shower with one child and the other child just. wasn’t. coming. I was having to get in and out of the shower, getting the … More Your child’s agency is not your job – loving and teaching is.
Growing up in Oregon, I’ve been lucky enough to see the giant sequoia trees many times. These trees are amazing. They can live as long as 3,000 years, They get as tall as 300 feet, They only grow in a 60-mile band in California. Another interesting fact? They need fire to reproduce. Seems counterintuitive, right? … More “You will face your greatest opposition when you are closest to your biggest miracle.”