a moment of honesty

{this post deviates a bit from my norm here on my blog...
i'm a bit hesitant, honestly, to share it.
but, I've been reading a couple of other blogs of pastor's wives and their honesty and glimpses into ministry are so refreshing and interesting. so, I thought I'd share a bit of our minsitry life with you.
even though I'm tempted to just hit "delete post" right.this.second. eek!}


six years ago my husband graduated from Dallas Theological Seminary 
with a masters of theology.

one of my favorite pictures of Matt and myself, taken on his graduation weekend.  Dallas, May, 2005.

{and for the record? we absolutely loved Dallas. 
loved the educaction and the experiences. seriously.
Miss Dallas life, but definitely am a midwestern girl at heart 
and am happy to be back home again}.
we have served in full-time church ministry since then.

Through {just} six years of ministry, I have learned a lot. 
we have learned a lot. for the better and for the worse.
the position of "pastor's wife" can be a hard one, but also a really, really rewarding one.
I have lots and lots I could share, but today, I'm going to say one thing.  
one thing that you could do that could really encourage the pastor's wife of the church you attend.

{sit by her.}

seriously. that easy.

I may be the only pastor's wife that feels like this, but for me, 
it's kinda awkward to figure out where to sit.
{I know, seriously, this sound so small and insignificant. 
it's not. trust me}.

I walk into the sanctuary on a Sunday morning, 
{or even for special meetings, dinners, events}
saying hi to as many people as I can, making an effort to greet as many people as I can
{but then, at some point, I gotta sit.}

if I sit by the same person every week I feel like I'm going to play favorites.
sometimes I feel like I'll interrupt people's families or friends or groups if I sit down next to them.
 if I sit by myself I feel like people are going think I'm cold or isolating.

seriously, this whole where-to-sit issue?
i'm sure i over-analyze it.
but also? for me, at least?
it can feel really, really awkward.

{to be super honest for a moment? sometimes I seriously make a point of getting a last-minute-cup-of-coffee just to be able to sneak in the back and avoid this whole issue}.

So, this Sunday?
sit by your pastor's wife during church.
it will make her feel more normal.
less isolated. less like the odd-man-out.
i promise.

and then? tell me if you do. 
and I'll say thank-you on her behalf.


Hope your Thanksgiving was restful and full of food and family.

one of my favorite parts of our Thanksgiving?
{besides the pumpkin cheesecake my dad sent home with us?}
seeing Grace {2 1/2} play with my parent's dog. She LOVES the dog. loves.
{love may not be a strong enough word}
and me? I love how much my sweet girl loves animals.  it's precious, and i love it.
{and brace myself for the pleading for a pet we're going to hear soon!}

Happiest of holiday weekends...
my heart is so, so thankful.

{may we remain this grateful all year round}.

Another JRA update

Sweet Grant.

He's my favorite-four-year-old.
{although he will quickly tell you he is four-and-a-half}!
 he's changing from preschooler-to-little-boy right.before.my.eyes.
he's playing with his tractors less and transformers more.
his logic abilities astound me and his eating abilities seriously surprise me!

he's funny and extremely observant.

{and wakes up with his knees hurting almost daily}.
his juvenile rheumatoid arthritis has taken us on an almost-year-long-journey so far.
last week we had another appointment with the really fabulous rheumatologist.

it made me so, so thankful.

so thankful that we walk into the children's hospital instead of push him in.
so thankful that we turn left towards rheumatology and not right towards oncology.
so thankful that three small pills keep his joint pain and fatigue under control.
so thankful that he has no more swelling in any joints.
{no more swelling!!}

about his knee pain?
the rheumatologist said that it's actually a good sign - meaning that when we give him the medicine, the pain goes away.  it's kind of the best-case-scenario with JRA.
so, good news.

for now, it's status quo.

three small pills and lots of prayer for remission. i can handle this. 
so, so thankful for a very manageable, very treatable disease.

and so, so thankful for my sweet four-and-a-HALF year-old.
grant owen, 
prayed for.

Thanksgiving Eve

It's the day before Thanksgiving and
I called my best friend four times today.
we met when we were 15.
and pretty much have been best friends since.

the crazy thing is is that I never had important stuff to tell her...
i told her how it doesn't feel like Christmas to me yet, though my trip to the mall
with all of the pre-black-friday shoppers; the Christmas decoration; salvation army bells...
it started to get me excited.
a four-year-old exclaiming Christmas lights! Santa! toys! it's CHRISTMAS! was helping. 

i told her how much the small things made me happy today.

like pretty eggs.

homemade burlap wreaths.

and warm chocolate brown paint for our sunroom that looks 
extra cozy with twinkly white lights added in the windows.

we chatted about our Thanksgivings.
We're spending tomorrow as everyone should
{lots of family and lots of food!}

if I were to call you today 
{if even to just tell you about my Bobbi Brown make up purchase}
I'd tell you that I'd hope you were going to drama-free family tomorrow. that you'd have your favorite food just the way you would serve it, and that you'd be surrounded by love.

May your Thanksgiving, wherever you're at, be blessed!

...When you have eaten and are satisfied, 
praise the LORD your God....
deut. 8:10


 {a day late}

 grace abigail. after church.
trying to figure out her momma's {sparklies}.
and don't you just die-with-cute over that dress?
i do.


The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me;
your steadfast love, O Lord, endures forever.
Do not forsake the work of your hands.
Psalm 138:8

 i walk by faith, not by sight.
it's a relief that He will fulfill His purpose for me.
as I pray to be radically obedient to our Savior, 
I rest in this promise from the Psalms.
He has a purpose for my life.
that's more than eternal piles of laundry.
I let go trying to figure out the what and when of the purpose out.

I walk by faith, not by sight.
 thank goodness, huh?
because if I walked by sight, sometimes my life would be running into walls.
i'd be frustrated. confused. 
I walk by faith. 
and i'm content. at rest.
with confidence in the One my faith is placed.

today, I walk by faith.
The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me;
your steadfast love, O Lord, endures forever.
Do not forsake the work of your hands.
Psalm 138:8


Right now,
{I kinda smell like throw-up}.

it was naptime.
We were rocking.
and then coughing.
and then throw up.

And with that, my day changed.
these will wait.

the crazy mounds of laundry will get folded
{shirt by shirt}

i sigh.
for a moment,
i wish.

to not step over legos.
to not go from sickness-to-sickness.
to sleep.
to make a phone call.

but then,

and i realize.
i realize that when the day comes that i'm not stepping over legos.
the dishes and laundry are done.
the cushions are always on the couch.

when that day comes?
my heart will ache for these days.

so, for now?
i will shower the throw up off, rock the baby girl, and breathe.


a friend introduced me to the Extraordinary Ordinary's Just Write.
love it. 
and love my friend Love.


today, my kitchen island looks like this

because my favorite four year old and I ...

 were busy making a red paper lightening-fast race track.

 and today, every single time this sweet girl

said {mommy hold you}...

...I stopped what I was doing
{like making potato soup for my last Bible study of the semester tonight}

...and I held her very, very close.

Today, I played monster trucks.
shot dart guns.
read princess books.
played tag.
got beat in tag.
rocked a baby girl to sleep.
played scientist with a preschooler.

Today, my kitchen island looks like this

and I am very, very okay with that.

Change of Plans.

oh, my.

as I just tucked my littlest in bed, I breathe a sigh of relief and sit down with this.

grande nonfat latte.  even better in a pretty red holiday cup, right?

I had big plans for today.
like maybe the children's museum, Monkey Joe's, or a host of other play options.
they all went out the window at about 10 a.m. when Grant started seeming really, really sick.
we've been battling that cough-and-cold nastiness for the past couple of weeks.

As Grant burst into tears over something seemingly small early this morning, I hugged him and right then threw my mental to-do list out the window.

We all spent the day in our jammies. 
I had Diet Coke delivered to my door. 
Jimmy Johns, i love you.

I took deep breaths, kept both sickish kids as happy as possible
{the almost 5-year-old even napped!}
and realized that nothing on my to-do list was more important than these two small sweet things.
even when Grant told me to stop smiling at him.
ya know little man, when I don't feel well, I kinda don't want people smiling at me, either.

We survived the day.  even pretty well, all things considered.
and a pretty red holiday cup makes a lot of things better.

right now?
thankful His Mercies are new every morning.

and really, really thankful for early-to-bed kiddos.


The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases;
   his mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning;
    great is your faithfulness.

Lamentations 3:22-23

A wednesday.

It's a Wednesday.

Grant's super excited because he's now officially earned 
four way-cool Transformers from his star charts.
for stuff like staying in bed at bedtime, listening super-well to mom, 
and sharing with Grace.

Grace is in her bed.
notice she's in her bed, not napping.
The Houdini herself can get out of every.single.way I tape/wrap/finagle her clothes onto her for nap.  And thus she keeps herself awake.
and thus I've cleaned up more than a few messes suitable for a hazmat squad.

so, as she's in her crib, I review for my Bible study tonight.
our last night in Colossians.
...Be steadfast in prayer...
{be courageously persistent in prayer, hold fast and not let go!}
 Colossians 4:2

My heart was challenged this week by the above passage and the parable in Luke 11.

What are you praying for today?
What are you praying for that seems unanswered?

Luke 11 tells us to keep on praying.  don't stop.  don't stop by an answer that seems like "no".

"...because of his persistence he will rise and give him whatever he needs..."
verse 8 of Luke 11

As we approach Orphan Sunday, a topic that's so close to my heart that I can barely even write about on this little blog of mine with out just breaking down and crying, I will keep on keeping on praying for the 147 million orphans in this world.  that go to bed with out someone to put clean, soft, fresh jammies on them. with out someone to rock them and hold them close.  with out someone to kiss their boo-boos and love them forever.  
Those are the orphans I pray for.

and my unanswered prayer today? that I will keep on keeping on praying for?
for a sweet, sweet boy in Ug@nda who I will forever love and plead justice for.
pray with me, will you?


The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.
James 5:17