Review: Crave

We are hungry people.Author Chris Tomlinson explores the contours of these hungers in a pithy, engaging 218-page read entitled Crave: Wanting So Much More of God (Harvest House). Each of the book's 15 short chapters tackles a different desire within us ranging from comfort to purpose to significance. His confessional style gently coaxes readers' longings into the light. Here, he discusses the slow "ah ha!" that dawned on him as he learned to quit making prayer into a Job:"...I stopped trying so … [Read more...]

We are fam-ah-lee

The pastor's wife leads the worship ministry at their small congregation. Or...the pastor's son-in-law becomes the youth minister. It's only natural that family members serve together at a local congregation, isn't it?Even some of Jesus' first disciples were brothers, right? The ideal is that families share an active, engaged faith. Wouldn't the logical conclusion of this shared faith be shared ministry?Yes.And no.Did you know that the word nepotism has its roots in medieval church practice? One … [Read more...]

Book review: Thy Kingdom Connected

Is the church: (A) series of bunkers, sheds and silos storing already-harvested grain or (B) an organic, open network of interconnected relationships? Of course, we know the answer is supposed to be [B].  However, [A] has often defined our functional reality. Dwight Friesen has written a book designed to expand our imaginations about the kingdom-shaped web of connections into which God is weaving His children. In the hands of a less-insightful analyst, Thy Kingdom Connected: … [Read more...]

Your advice?

I've been blogging for over four years now. In that time, I've had two addresses, four jobs and three cars. I've written two books, lost a parent, added a new grandson to the family tree, been to Israel twice, joined Curves twice (sigh), and have attended three different churches.  What hasn't changed in my life? Besides the unwavering love of my Savior and the grace-gift of a patient, patient husband, there has been at least one other unchanging reality for me: words. I have read more … [Read more...]

Book review: What’s He Really Thinking?

Another book review today! I have to put my own bias out here: I am not a fan of "relationship" books. After working in a bookstore off and on for 4 years, I concluded that this was a one-note genre. All the books seemed to have the same basic advice and tone, no matter what the title or who the author happened to be. That said, I didn't have high hopes when I received a review copy of Paula Rinehart's What's He Really Thinking? How to be a Relational Genius with the Man in Your Life … [Read more...]

Practice makes…an avocado scarf

This is what a first draft looks like. After a forty year hiatus, I took up knitting recently. I have no lofty goals for this new hobby - no wooly cable-knit sweater-cap combos. I just want to create a few handmade scarves to give as gifts to family and friends. Think etsy with training wheels.  A friend who is a gifted knitter spent a morning reacquainting me with the basics. (Thanks, Marie!) The "scarf" above - and I use the term "scarf" loosely here - is my virgin flight into the … [Read more...]

Add your prayer

 Just weeks after the wedding last March, my new brother-in-law Larry was diagnosed with cancer. He underwent chemo and radiation throughout the remainder of 2009, and his docs told him there was no evidence of his cancer at the conclusion of his course of treatment.Just before Christmas, he contracted pneumonia and was hospitalized. Last week, they placed him on a ventilator. The couple remains committed to trusting their Savior no matter what happens, no matter what their location or … [Read more...]