I’ve Got a Lot of Questions . . .

I’ve Got a Lot of Questions . . .

I live in a world of questions. Mostly unanswered—or unanswerable, this side of Heaven—questions. I’m betting you do, too.

Young moms I dearly love are asking tough ones. Why did my 13-year-old have to die? Why does one young family have so many children with major medical problems and special needs?

Why does a pregnant mom with three young children have cancer? Big questions are circling around my neighborhood, too, as one of our own—an incredibly resilient, positive, fun-loving friend who has struggled gracefully with unimaginable challenges for years—now grapples with yet another seemingly insurmountable battle. To name only a few recent questions. Come to think of it, I have a lot of my own right now, too.

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Lookpots, Grinches, and What If’s

Lookpots, Grinches, and What If’s

“Daddy, are you coming to the Look-pot today?” A wide-eyed three-year-old looks over at her daddy at the breakfast table. 

“The Look-pot?” A moment of confusion, and then the daddy (our son Lars) replies: “Oh, you mean the potluck. Yes, I am coming, Linnea.” 

“And Daddy, are you gonna look?” 

Linnea’s question remained with me long after this charming little conversation. It remained even after we ourselves got to go to the Thanksgiving Potluck at our granddaughters’ preschool during a recent wonderful visit to Kodiak, Alaska.

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Does It Really? Change Everything?

Does It Really? Change Everything?

“The biggest thing I’ve learned at Mom to Mom is that God loves me. Really loves me. Even me. Others have tried to tell me. But somehow I couldn’t believe it. You know, the way I am. But this year through Mom to Mom, I have truly felt God’s love. And you know, Linda, when you know God loves you, really loves you, it changes everything.”

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Thanksgiving Dissonance: Going Deeper

Thanksgiving Dissonance: Going Deeper

“How shall we sing the Lord’s song in a strange land?” (Psalm 137:4 KJV)

I keep hearing this plaintive cry of the Israelites from the pain-laced Psalm 137. Though I’m not living in exiIe as they were, I am living in a strange land of my own. It is strange for many reasons, some sharable and some not. As I near completion of radiation for breast cancer, I am also struggling with glaucoma issues that cause me to live my life between the radiation clinic and the ophthalmology office—and the couch. And November is always my month of special thanks-giving.

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Enough

Enough

The word bounces around my brain these days. Echoes through the chambers of my heart. Enough. We use it in all kinds of ways. “Enough is enough,” proclaimed the Prime Minister of Britain after the most recent tragic terrorist attack in that country. “Enough!” we tell our children. “I’ve had enough!” Authors, commentators, and wise observers of life remind us: “We live in a ‘never enough’ culture.”

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Gutsy Gratitude

Gutsy Gratitude

“I feel as if I can never cease praising God. Come and rejoice with me over His goodness.” The words keep echoing in my mind. Really, in my heart. They’re the introduction to a paraphrase of Psalm 34 that is, in a sense, our family Psalm. More on that to come.

“Really? Praising God? Now? In the midst of this mess? As I sit by this hospital bed? After I’ve just buried my husband? When I am so desperately concerned about my child’s special needs? While it seems I’m always waiting for a doctor to call back about the next diagnosis/surgery/meds? When my marriage is struggling so? Rejoice? Really?” These are the other words that echo in my head—and heart.

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Groans and Grace

Groans and Grace

There’s a lot of groaning in my world lately. Not whining. Not self-pity. Not, to use the Irish word that says it perfectly, whinging (it’s pronounced “win-jing,” and according to my daughter, my Irish grandkids do it a lot. I think I do, too). Groaning. There’s a difference. Whining, self-pity, whinging—they’re all full of words. Groans are wordless. They’re the deep-down ache of ongoing, private pain.

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Legacy Living: Really? Now?

Legacy Living: Really? Now?

A Mom to Mom leader recently asked the question: “Our group will be doing the lesson on ‘Beginning at the End: Legacy Living from Day One.’ (Session One from Inside Out Parenting curriculum) It’s been a few years since you filmed that. Anything to add from ‘on up the road apiece?’ ”

Great question! Good enough even to make me do the unthinkable: sit down and watch my own DVD teaching. Tough. If you don’t think so, just imagine watching a 30-minute video of yourself!

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The Party’s Over . . .

The Party’s Over . . .

The house is quiet now. Way too quiet. And way too orderly. Only the ticking away of my Mom’s grandfather clock, reminding me that time moves on. 

For 38 glorious days, our home has been filled with the voices of children. My ten favorite children, to be precise. Shouts and giggles and fun and laughter and crying and bickering and “time outs” and whispered conversations between cousins coming from the “craft closet” (our master bedroom closet, repurposed) and loud games interspersed with “No, it’s my turn!” . . . You get the picture. 38 days of glorious chaos.

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