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Browsing Tag: God

He Fights for You

Have you ever learned something about God for the first time and then suddenly, that same lesson is everywhere? It’s like God is saying, “You’re going to really learn this.” Lately, the scripture “The Lord will fight for you” is everywhere for me. It’s all over the Old Testament (like Ex. 14:14 and Deut. 1:30) in stories I’ve read a million times. God keeps telling his people that, that He will fight for them. It’s a beautiful promise and important for us to remember. This Sunday at my church here in Nashville, we…

Four Little Promises

Somewhere near the end of Tennessee and just before Arkansas I started to ask God to be with me, and he told me he always has been. It’s a prayer I pray almost by default: “Lord, give me this, this and this and please be with me. Amen.” But this time, I heard a response. Maybe it was because I was in my car and had nowhere to go or rush off to. I had finally turned off the music and was sitting in impossible traffic with no end in sight. But I felt God’s voice a little…

Learning to Rest

I write to you today from the lobby of a Ramada Inn in Ft. Walton, Florida. I’m on a somewhat last-minute beach trip with a friend. We plopped ourselves onto the white sand for two days on this long weekend with no agenda, lots of snacks and what turned out to be expired sunscreen. We are “resting.” At least, that’s what I’m supposed to be doing. I have vowed to take a breath between leaving my job and diving into My Writing Thing. A couple of weeks to breathe deeply, read, look at the water and…

'The Waves and Wind Still Know His Name'

If you’re not familiar with the Bethel version of “It Is Well With My Soul,” get familiar with it now. This song played in my head all weekend. My little sister chose it as part of the music played in her wedding ceremony, and I melted as I heard the band rehearse it at the church Thursday night and then again when my sister and I played it on repeat (at my request) on the way to the bridal luncheon and finally during the wedding itself as it played and everything else was silent before the moms walked down…

Why Life Is Not a Paint-by-Number

Still, well into adulthood, I find myself just wanting to fit in. It’s not in the same way as it was in high school of course. I’m not hoping to be invited to the right party or pretending to smoke a cigarette or claiming my drink in my plastic cup wasn’t water, when it was. This was how I “fit in” as a teen. Today, I want to fit in with a life that follows the appropriate succession of events. I realized this recently over lunch with a friend. We discussed how each life phase brings its…

You Are More than You Think You Are

I think we often define ourselves by the things we believe we are not just as much as we define ourselves by the things we are. I am a publicist. I am a preacher’s daughter. I am a writer. I am not a musician. I am not a chef. I am not an athlete. It’s funny I’ve always told people I’m not an athlete because I played sports from age 5 to 18 and I played intramural volleyball each year in college. I even tried playing in a couple of leagues after college, and I’ve…

When Joy Seeps In

As Christians, we have access to something that sets us apart from all others: joy. I am not sure how to feel deep joy apart from knowing deep grace, the kind that Jesus made possible. That’s why I feel joy, the real kind, is reserved for believers. I know joy is real, that it’s a thing we have access to through the Holy Spirit, when I’m feeling it at times that I shouldn’t. This hasn’t happened for me often in my life. Even though I’ve been a Christian for a long time, grace and…

Why Do We Love Those Who Don't Love Us Back? Part II

A little over two years ago I wrote a post entitled Why Do We Love Those Who Don’t Love Us Back? It is consistently my most-read post. When I visit my handy dandy WordPress dashboard, that tells me I haven’t written a blog post in months and 14 people viewed it last Tuesday, I see that one of the most common search terms bringing people to English Lessons is a variation of that question: Why do I love someone who doesn’t love me back? This has fascinated me for these past two years. People Google that…