Tag Archives: spiritual growth

Yeah, but…

Wednesday Wisdom 😊

I took a hiatus from blogging late this fall. I don’t have a specific explanation, except that I believe I needed to retreat to the “virtual wilderness” for a bit. As 2022 begins, I am choosing to move forward with strength and courage – remembering God’s command in Joshua 1:9.

“Be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

This week I hit the “3 year” mark since I broke my leg. Throughout those 1107 days, I’ve learned a lot about patient endurance, and leaning into Jesus to help me live with a cheerful and courageous heart. I’ve also seen how fear holds me back, and how hard it is to move forward in faith if I do not both claim and act on the promises that the Father gives to me. Just as it has become crystal clear to me that the difference between a good day and a bad day is my attitude, I also have come to recognize that it is through suffering that I am able to really hold onto and own that mantra. It’s easy to have a good attitude and to live with courageous strength when everything is going well; it’s life changing to be able to do it when you hurt.

We had a “guest speaker” this week at church. I put that in quotation marks because Pastor Bobby isn’t really a guest — he’s a member of our church. But, he does not often preach so I guess that makes him a guest speaker! Bobby is a member of our church family that I find myself looking for each week as we gather because he has a way of sharing a smile combined with a tidbit of wisdom that always blesses me. Usually I visit with him “on the sidelines”, but this week his message resonated “from the pulpit”. Bobby spoke of the first chapter of Joshua:

  • of God’s commands to us
  • of our responsibility to obediently claim and act on His promises to us
  • of how knowing the Word enables us to live the Word

He left us with some advice: “In order to make 2022 our best spiritual year as both individuals, and as team Jesus at Parkview, we need to get rid of the ‘yeah, buts’.” I remember when my kids were little, and as soon as they got caught making a bad choice they would say, “but Mama I was just…” Well, a “yeah but” isn’t a lot different than a “but Mama I was just…”. It is an excuse, or a rationalization that we use when God asks us to do something that is hard, or that we are not sure we want to do. Our “yeah, buts” are likely some of the greatest deterrents in our walk with Jesus. They keep us from believing so deeply that it affects our hearts, our attitudes, and our actions. They hold us back from moving forward in faith by providing an “excuse” for us to tell God “no”.


The photo above is a secular example of a “yeah, but” that I have struggled with post leg-break. My leg never healed correctly. I don’t know why, and I probably never will, but that’s not the point that I’m trying to make here. The point is that I have only ridden a handful of times in the last 3 years. The first year, I was in a cast and on crutches most of the year, but the 2nd and 3rd years I didn’t ride because my leg hurt and I was afraid. Megan or Karyn would ask if I wanted to ride with them, and I would say “yeah, but my leg hurts.” A few weeks ago, I decided that my “yeah, buts” were problematic so when Meg got home from college and asked me to ride, I said “yes”. We’ve ridden many times in the past 3 weeks, and I’ve enjoyed each one. I finally decided that the joy of being outside riding is greater than the “yeah, but my leg hurts“.

My spiritual walk is intrinsically tied to my secular walk because I’ve given my heart to Jesus. I try to be obedient to God but sometimes fear causes me to not grab hold and act on His promises. When I do that, I limit God and I limit His purpose for my life. The truth is that joy lives in embracing those promises. And, I can only find that joy when I get rid of the “yeah, but”. Just as I know that I can overcome the hurt to still ride my horse, I know God loves me. I know that He offers me strength and courage. I know that I never walk alone. But, I have to deeply believe it in order to move my feet with cheerful and determined strength when He commands it. I know the Word and it tells me that I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. And, that’s a whole lot better than a “yeah, but” 😊

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Falling in Love…

Wednesday Wisdom 🙂


Inspiration this week comes from Luke 10: 27

“You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and with all your mind. And, Love your neighbor as yourself.”

and

John 21: 18

“I tell you the truth, when you were young, you were able to do as you liked; you dressed yourself and went wherever you wanted to go. But when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and others will dress you and take you where you don’t want to go.”


Do you remember “falling in love”? I do. It was the fall of my freshman year of college when I met my favorite farmer. I had many things going on in my life: classes, swim team, friends but he quickly rose to the top of the list. My perspective altered as “I” became “we” and we began our journey together. Twenty seven years later, I still can say with confidence that he is the best thing that Dartmouth College gifted to me 🙂

When we fall in love our priorities change, but perhaps more importantly our hearts change. We discover that others are more important than ourselves. We find the joy of finding joy together. Many of us are also stretched (and blessed) even further as God gives us children to love. As we navigate the years, God uses our families to help us to learn the beauty of unconditional and unselfish love.


I have found love to be the only truly meaningful inspiration in my life. It is the one thing that leads me to places that I have not chosen myself. Sometimes those places are happy places but as I get older I am finding that they can be uncomfortable or even painful places. I allow myself to be guided to them and through them because I love. I think that sometimes we are tempted to let fear inspire us, but I believe that our God is a God of love.

Just as my heart changed when I met and fell in love with my favorite farmer, so it did again when I fell in love with Jesus. I learned that when I love God with all my heart, all my soul, all my strength, and all my mind; then I am called to love my neighbor in a new way. This new way of loving is a love without expectation of anything in return. It is a love that takes me to places that I don’t always want to go to.

The first time that I read the above passage from John 21:18, I thought of being old and going to a nursing home. I thought of people taking care of me because I could no longer take care of myself. Anyone who knows me well, knows that I hate the thought of leaving the farm and being moved into a nursing home! However, as I read Henri Nouwen’s book, Following Jesus, the passage took on an entirely new meaning for me. When I placed it together with the Golden Rule and really analyzed the entire chapter, my eyes were opened.

Just as our bodies and our minds mature over time, so do our spiritual hearts. When I was spiritually young, I did whatever I liked and went wherever I wanted to go. As I have fallen in love with Jesus, my heart changed and now I find myself stretching out my hands and submitting to where the Holy Spirit tells me to go — even if it is somewhere hard. As Nouwen analyzes the passage from the Gospel of John he says, “When you are in love, when you are really in love, you can be guided to places that you have not chosen yourself. The person who loves can go to places where she or he would rather not go.” Not only that, but “If we are truly in love, our eyes are not focused on what hurts. Our eyes are focused on the person we love.”


In the last 3 weeks, I’ve traveled across the country to deliver my two older girls to college, and also begun my fall coaching tenure. During this time, I have been repeatedly reminded that fear does not spark meaningful change. Fear brings shame, hurt, guilt, anger, loneliness and frustration. Our country is filled with fear, but it needs love. Love is what changes hearts and moves us into meaningful and purposeful places.

We all need to fall in love again with the One who first loved and will continually fill us with the perfect love that casts out fear.

Please join me in prayer for this 🙂

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