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The heart of the prodigal

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"So he got up and went to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him." ~Luke 15:20


I have to confess. I never really "got" the parable of the prodigal son growing up.
I was always a "good kid." Never one to step out of line, I felt I related more closely to the brother who stayed behind, the one who kept to his responsibilities and always did what was expected of him. I couldn't understand how the father in the story could be so celebratory about the kid who practically spat on the family, while he barely blinked at the one who stayed behind.

To me, the phrase "prodigal son" was more used to describe a son (or child, I suppose) who'd disappear to do what they wanted and was showered with affection when they returned. It was more a tongue-in-cheek phrase, I think. And that's how a lot of people use it -- we'v…

Finding joy

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“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.” Philippians 4:4-5
Some days, it seems like it only takes one little thing to go from “going perfectly” to “completely off the rails.”

Then, every little thing becomes a point of irritation, from slow drivers to waiting too long at the doctor's office.

In spite of it all, we're commanded to be joyful.
“Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18But, man, sometimes it's hard.

Wednesday was one of those days.

It started off great, then I dumped the cat food in the kitchen, had to yell at the dog for eating the cat food in the floor, and ended up crying in the floor for yelling at the dog.

Then I had a doctor's appointment, for which I left the house late and we got a little lost getting to. Jim was in a mood, because he had a sore mouth (had to go to the denti…

Faith of Job

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Note: This was not the post I intended to write tonight. I sat down to focus on another topic and it seemed this one simply flowed. So here goes.
“Then Job replied to the Lord: ‘I know that you can do all things; no plan of yours can be thwarted.’” ~Job 42:1-2

Some folks have told me how positive I’m being in spite of the, shall we say, life change I’m currently facing. I’m never sure how to respond to those people. Would you prefer I whine and moan about my lack of a job? That doesn’t do anyone any good.
And, besides, I’ve no doubts that God has it under control.
Except there are days when the Devil tries to creep in with his doubt and fear and scare me.
But then, the Good Lord in His infinite wisdom, reminds me.
“Don’t worry.”
“I’ve got this.” One thing that’s been strengthened in this season of my life has been my prayer and quiet time with God. Perhaps it was coincidence that I discovered these women’s devotion books at our church just before it happened.
Perhaps it was coincidence that …

Plans for a future

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 "'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the Lord, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.'" ~Jeremiah 29:11


Often, this is where people stop. They spout this verse about how God will take care of us. They share it with graduates, they write it when people are going through tough times and it becomes an anthem for those not knowing what's coming next.

Shoot, I've been guilty of this myself. I've quoted the verse to myself when I struggled. I looked at it for comfort.

Personally, I think there's nothing wrong with looking to Jeremiah 29:11 for comfort. But I think we're doing a disservice to not look at more of the passage.

I admit, Jeremiah is not a book I'm that well-versed in. Google gives us some insight into the time of Jeremiah the prophet and writer of the book. Since I'm not a Biblical scholar, however, I feel it's best to leave the explanations to those who know better, whi…

When a door closes

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"In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps." ~Proverbs 16:9
On Aug. 13, 2012, I walked into the office of The Advocate-Messenger. I was in the process of finishing my master's degree and was starting my first "real" job as a professional journalist.

I was in awe my first day. That was a feeling that didn't go away quickly, either. There were legends in that office and I was getting to work alongside them.

I got to cover the vice presidential debate that year. I met then-Governor Steve Beshear multiple times in those first few months. I had the opportunity to shake the hands of journalists from around the world.

I've met people who have amazed and inspired me.

I've covered stories that have broken my heart.

I've gotten to meet various elected officials in Boyle and surrounding counties. I've gotten to know a variety of first responders.

I met my husband.

I've gotten to fulfill a dream of mine.

And, on June 22, 2018, I…

Supporting the Arts Center

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"Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up." ~Pablo Picasso
I don't remember the first time I picked up a brush or was shown how to create something from nothing.
But I assure you, it was a great experience. My whole life, I've been surrounded by a family that enjoys creating something out of nothing. My mom and grandma were making grapevine wreaths before Martha Stewart made it cool. I would spend hours with various members of my family on one project or another.
I do remember the first time I picked up a crochet hook. I was a teenager and I had expressed to my dad how I wished I could learn that.
So he taught me.
I'm convinced my dad can honestly make anything. But that's another story for another time.
He had learned from either my aunt or my grandma when he was younger. He remembered how and taught me. He made a hat using the single crochet stitch.
I remember how excited I was. My first real project? A purse. I still have i…

Be kind

"Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle." ~Believed to be said by the Rev. John Watson, who went by the pen name Ian Maclaren
Today, I met a brilliant young lady, one who reminded me so much of myself when I was younger.

On my way to interview her, my mind had been mulling around some heavy thoughts. After interviewing her, I was heading to the courthouse, to cover a case of man who is accused of murdering his wife in their home.

Yesterday, a student in another state took a gun to school, in an effort to shoot classmates. Thankfully, he was stopped. This is the third or fourth attempted (or successful) school shooting this year.

Last night and this morning, I saw two different stories of people who have stolen dogs — one in need of life-saving medication.

Recently a friend, added me to a group where the sole purpose is to share cases of child abuse.

The list goes on. My heart is so heavy. I’m so tired and exhausted at dealing with all this hard stuff.

I just…