Wednesday’s Word: Laughter!


“They” say laughter is good medicine. If that’s true, then being around me must good for other people’s health. Because I make people laugh. Sometimes they laugh with me—other times at me. But it’s laughter all the same.

I remember a conversation I had with one of our foster boys. He got in a fight with another boy. A careless comment ended up coming to blows. As I pulled the details out of him, I uncovered some humor he had missed. We take ourselves to seriously. I pointed out the ridiculous statement that had been made and we both had a good laugh.

On a different occasion I was the one who needed to laugh. I recognized the comedy in the moment, but wouldn’t allow myself to laugh. Instead I adopted a controlling, dominant parent. It was awful—for both my daughter and myself. Laughter would have been much better than humble pie that day.

Perhaps it’s easier for me to find humor because it’s easier for me to see good, and find joy.

I hope you’re able to uncover plenty of reasons to laugh today.


Selah: What do these stones mean?


I love walking. I love walking in Arizona when I’m visiting my mom. Feeling blessed to be able to do that this week.

As we travel closer to Palm Sunday and Easter, I have been thinking a lot about rocks.

There are a lot of rocks in Arizona. I took the picture of the rocks on my walk the other day.

I wonder who put them there. I wonder why.

In the Bible, a pile of stones marked a special moment—a sign to remember. In the old hymn, Come Thou Fount, we sing: “Here I raise my Ebenezer, hither by Thy help I’m come.”

Do you know what that means? We aren’t singing about Scrooge. The verse is a thanks to God for his care in bringing us through or to something.

What has he brought you to…or through lately?

The stack of stones stand as a reminder to you, and a testimony to others that we have a God who goes with us (through whatever we’re facing) and brings us to where he needs and wants us to be.

Prayer: God, some of the things we’re facing seem difficult, confusing…okay—downright impossible. We can only get through with you. Help us. Sustain us. And we will give you thanks…and a testimony.

Sermon Seeds (Way in advance): Stones

I was enjoying a long walk in the coolness of an Arizona morning, when all of a sudden I noticed a sharp pain in my left heel. Somehow my shoe picked up a hitch-hiker:

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I limped over to a railing and extricated the little freeloader. I laughed to think that something so small could stop me dead in my tracks. The pointy edges on this pebble shot pain through my entire body.

Rocks know how to get our attention.


When Jesus came into Jerusalem on the day we celebrate as Palm Sunday, the people lauded him. Their praise concerned the Pharisees. They told the people to be quiet. Jesus’ response: “If they get quiet, the rocks will cry out.”

Are there those in your sphere of influence who seek to silence your testimony? Will you let them?

God will be praised.

Ain’t gonna let no rock steal my praise!

Selah: Vacation


My husband and I are going on a vacation—together. That may not sound like news to most people, but for us it is more rare than a blue moon.

In 40 years we’ve only been on vacation together about a dozen times—and most of those were with family.

He’s always been a go and see kind of guy. Fill up the schedule. See all the sites. I would come home exhausted.

This time, he’s on vacation. No agenda. Not interested in going or doing.

Resting. Really resting.

I’m encouraged. It’s as if I have permission to rest, too.

Why do I need someone else to give me permission?

Do you need permission to rest? To Sabbath?

We’re planning to go to Hawaii next year for our 40th. I asked for recommendations from friends on Facebook. One of the best came my friend Mike. He said this: My recommendation… just go to Hawaii (I liked Maui)sit on the beach during the day and relax. Go to a Luau in the evening and enjoy yourself. Take notes for all the stuff you would like to visit on your next trip, maybe squeeze one of those in on this trip but most of all relax. Don’t worry about your hair while you’re there because there is no such thing as a good hair day on the islands. And relax, treat like one long Sabbath.

There’s something to be said for this kind of thinking. Get someplace in nature. Appreciate God’s amazing handiwork. Breathe.

I’m breathing a lot of Arizona air this week. And thanking God for the opportunity to rest.

Selah: Reminder

For most of my 20’s and 30’s I couldn’t sit still. I was a doing machine. Those were the days of attempting to balance mothering, working, and being a wife and keeping a house.  Somehow through that period we also spent time with friends—doing things.

Then a shift began to take place. I became able to sit for long periods of time: reading, watching TV, or more recently trolling and scrolling on the internet. One must create a social presence.

Almost two years ago, I got a FitBit. And I started to move. My wrist companion even reminds me to move every hour. Many complain about that feature, but I love it! If I sit for too long I get stiff and have difficulty moving when I need to. The result has been a renewed dedication to moving, and setting goals for quantity and quality of movement. I have become disciplined—and it feels good.

I wonder if I could set a reminder to think about God.

Let all that I am wait quietly before God, for my hope is in him.Let all that I am wait quietly before God, for my hope is in him (Psalm 62:5, NLT).



Wednesday’s Word: Jubilant


Today’s word is one that isn’t used very often today. We might know what it feels like. When the test comes back positive and you’ve been trying to get pregnant for years. You’re exuberant. Your team wins the national championship. You feel triumphant. You complete your final round of  chemo and ring the bell. You’re celebrating.

These are jubilant moments.

But can we live that way?

We are much more familiar with the opposite of today’s word: unethusiastic, discouraged, unexcited, and sorrowful.

Jesus saw a lot of the downside of today’s word. The people were oppressed by the Roman government from without, and by the religious leaders from within. One day he looked out at the crowd, and was moved to compassion. I imagine that happened more than once during his ministry.

That day he invited them to learn a new way from him. On another occasion he assured his followers with these words: I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete (John 15:11, NIV).

Complete joy? That’s jubilant. That’s what Jesus offers.