On the way into Bethlehem

We parked. The whole family piled out of the van, donned coats and hats, and began to wade through a sea of vehicles. Strains of Jewish music floated over the fence from across the road. Who knew that the local “Bethlehem Village,” hosted by several area churches, drew such a crowd? 

With two littles in the double stroller, we moved quickly before they could start deciding they didn’t like being in the stroller after all. A parking attendant called out, “There’s a place to cross the road about half way down.” Continue reading “On the way into Bethlehem”

My Favorite Christmas Tradition

Simple traditions are the ones I love best. They stand the test of time. No matter how hectic the holiday season becomes, they still endure.

We started one of those simple traditions about five or six years ago. All you need are four candles and voices joined together in song. I’m so excited to share with you Continue reading “My Favorite Christmas Tradition”

If Mama Ain’t Thankful

She stood there smiling at me, in the basement of the church where we both were visiting. It was a genuine smile, a relaxed smile, not a forced “I have to smile at you because I’m the evangelist’s wife” smile. She had three or four small children in tow, and they were climbing on everything in sight, as were mine. Continue reading “If Mama Ain’t Thankful”

A thought from Steve (with Fall pictures!)

IMG_5448After reading my last blog post, about working alongside your children, Steve said, “There’s a spiritual lesson in that.”

Here’s the truth he shared. We have One who comes alongside us, too. As followers of Christ, we’ve all been given jobs to do, many of which seem beyond our abilities. Our Master hasn’t left us alone to figure it all out ourselves. He’s given us Continue reading “A thought from Steve (with Fall pictures!)”

Sandals for the School Year

{photos by Ethan Hall}

Here we go…. setting out on another year of schooling. Preparations at our house just got bumped into super-speed mode. Due to scheduling changes in two of my older children’s work on a local farm’s butchering crew, we are having to start school a week earlier than we had planned. (Hopefully you can’t hear the panic in my voice as I say that.)
Continue reading “Sandals for the School Year”

God of the Very Small

{I wrote this several years ago. The photos were taken by Katelyn during a family day at the Blue Ridge Parkway, although not the same day referenced in this article.}

“Look at this, Mom!” My daughter ran up and handed me a lacy green fern leaf. We both gazed at it for a moment, a delicate and detailed specimen.

Our family was enjoying a day together with friends on the Blue Ridge Parkway. We had just gazed Continue reading “God of the Very Small”

Lessons of the Field, part 2 (Parable of the Seed)

Once there was a little seed. It was a beautiful seed, black and shiny, and it thought of itself very highly. It wanted to be set in a prominent place where it could be admired by all who passed by. It took great care for its image and comfort at all times, and despised the thought Continue reading “Lessons of the Field, part 2 (Parable of the Seed)”

Lessons of the Field- Part 1

Such a glorious time of year; plants of all types growing and blooming all around. Across the road from our house in the farmer’s field, some kind of golden grain waves in the wind. Don’t you love seeing a fresh new plant burst forth out of the soil? It’s a miracle, and I’ve never met a person who didn’t enjoy the process of planting a seed and watching it grow. It’s a good time to pause and consider this question: “In order for these plants to grow and bloom or bear fruit, what has to happen first?” Think about something Jesus said: “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a kernel of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit.” (John 12:24)
Continue reading “Lessons of the Field- Part 1”