Change Your Blog; Change Your Life

image (58)

Dramatic, eh? What’s the point of a title that doesn’t threaten the end of life as we know it?

Two years ago, I began blogging by necessity. Several of you were nice enough to follow along and whisper confident encouragement in my ear when I wanted to quit. Because I am a writer and editor by profession, the first question in every interview or conference I attended seemed to be, “What’s your blog about?”

[Insert deer-in-the-headlights look.]

All I really wanted was a red pen and something to fix. A blog? Say what?

So since blogging was apparently the rite of passage on the road to publication, I decided to write about what mattered to me: my home. At the time, I was working a corporate job where the endless office chatter involved climbing to the top. One of my co-workers innocently asked if I had aspirations of–you know, being a head honcho–and I responded that the only honcho I wished to be was a house honcho, you know, COO of my own home (not to be confused with the CEO).

The person looked at me much the way you might be looking at this screen. Sometimes Often, things sound better in my head.

But a blog was born.

I have lots I’d like to say on what I learned while blogging about home management, but the essence is this: My life looked different back then. Learning to be a better home manager was my passion. (It should also be noted that I didn’t have children, so cleaning my house was a wholly enjoyable experience.)

Recently, I was thinking about my life and the legacy I hope to leave my kids someday. Yes, I want them to remember a clean(ish) house. I want them to know I loved them enough to fix good(ish) food. Of course I do. But more than that, I want them to remember the things we celebrated.

I want to celebrate the large and small evidences of grace in our family so that my kids look back and can’t not remember the landmarks of God’s goodness. (Double negative? Ah well. Where’s that red pen?)

Celebration. In my life, it is the ingredient that is missing too often.

If I get so caught up in folding laundry or wiping tables or washing dishes that I forget to celebrate life, I will go to my grave with regret. I am not insinuating that a clean house matters less to me today than it has in the past. I think a clean house is a gift. But I want to celebrate home and family more often than just the 11 days the banks are closed. You know all those little holidays on the calendar?–Yes, even the silly, made-up ones? I intend to use ‘em.

As of November 1, this blog is going a new direction. From the header on down it’s all changing. Please join me in this new season.

Maybe when we’re done celebrating, we’ll need to go back to cleaning in order to put it all away.

Bracelets for Bibles

image (34)

October is the month of pumpkin everything. The season is finally changing. The air is crisp and cool. And something else … something very important …

My church makes Bibles.

For one week in October, everything is swept aside in the name of Bible production. Tables are organized in the gymnasium and machines are assembled. For a week–from early morning until late at night–the sounds of ka-thunkka-thunkka-thunk mix with excited voices and result in a truckload of Bibles.

The Bibles cost between 12 and 13 cents a piece to compile. We are encouraged–each of us–to do whatever we can to contribute. When the Bibles are finished, we box them up and send them around the world.

Last week Andrew asked me if he could give money this year for the Bibles.

What could I possibly say? Of course! But the longer I thought about it, the more complicated my answer became. Sure, I could write a check and hand it to him, but then the giving would be on my part and not his. I told him we would need to find a way that he could participate in the giving. True generosity, as my pastor recently pointed out, isn’t giving away something you’ll never use.

Tonight Andrew showed up in the kitchen with his box of pony beads and a wad of suede cord.

“What are you going to make?” I asked.

“Bracelets for Bibles.”

Hard at work organizing beads

Hard at work organizing beads

 

He explained that he could trade bracelets for quarters to make Bibles.

For almost two hours I watched him painstakingly organize the beads into bowls. The mom in me wanted to jump in and make it easier, but I only intervened when it was time to actually make the first bracelet.

the final product

the final product

 

He says he is ready to do the rest himself.

The Wordless Book seemed appropriate since the Bibles also tell a story of sin and reconciliation.

BLACK – Sin Romans 3:23 | All have sinned

RED – Blood I John 1:7 | Jesus’ blood covers all sin

WHITE– Pure Psalm 51:7 | Jesus washes away confessed sin

YELLOW – Heaven John 14:2 | Believe on Jesus and receive Eternal Life

GREEN – Grow 2 Peter 3:18 | Grow in the knowledge of the Lord



He thought we could ask for $50 a bracelet, but I talked him down to $2.

$2 would mean 16 Bibles for every bracelet sold. He has faith, so I will, too.

October has never looked so good.

 

If you are interested in buying a bracelet for Bibles, click here. Every penny of every donation will go directly to the project. Thank you!


The One Thought That Has Revolutionized My View of People

image (26)

I know from years of creative writing classes that strong titles are 5 words or fewer, but I thought I’d save us both a few seconds and get to the point of this post. It’s hard to love unlovely people, right? Really hard. It’s hard enough loving lovely people who are being unlovely. (Sally sells seashells, anyone?) The […]

[Continue reading...]

The Corner Office

Summer Bucket List 2014.pdf - Adobe Reader 6212014 54104 PM.bmp

Let’s begin with this. I am writing this post from my new office! I am no longer forced to do battle with children’s books or stray Legos in order to claim the one free couch cushion on which to get my writing done. Let freedom ring! I have a desk (snagged from the discards pile at a […]

[Continue reading...]

5 Things I Want My Children to Know about Easter

image (4)

Successful teaching requires proper planning. Here is what I want to communicate: 1. Easter isn’t about the candy (or the bunny). At the moment these items become a distraction from the cross, they are doing the work of Hell. Am I anti-candy or anti-Easter-eggs? No—in the same way that I’m not anti-gift-giving at Christmas while clinging to […]

[Continue reading...]

Where Trisha Learns to Jump Rope (again)

Spring was my favorite time of year as a child. Finally, I could play outside again. And if I was really lucky, I could even shed my evil winter coat that felt like the inflatable sumo wrestling suits I saw people wear at the street fair. ($5 gets you 10 minutes in the ring and […]

[Continue reading...]

Running Like a Girl: My Unlikely Trek to 140.6 Miles

Running in the Forbidden City

Some rights reserved by pamhule   So here’s the ugly truth: I’ve never been good at running. I’ve listened to friends talk about the “high” they get from running and I think, Really? The only high I get from running is the few seconds of vertical extent I achieve as I’m tripping over an uneven patch […]

[Continue reading...]

Spring: All in Favor, Say ‘Aye!’

Photo-a-day Challenge 2014

  Whew! Thank you all for your patience with me as I disappeared for a few days. We are recovering from a fairly intense week of illness at my house. I’ll spare you the details since you are probably doing the same. Suffice to say, I am thankful to turn a new page on my […]

[Continue reading...]

The Memory Box

Photo-of-the-day challenge: MEMORY

  The first time we met, He said, “Trisha, right?” He should have stopped there.

[Continue reading...]

An Open Letter to My Son’s Birthmother

Sanctity of Life Sunday

  To the woman who delivered the boy that I love: I know very little about you. I know how old you were when you gave birth and I know a smattering of details related to your pregnancy. That’s it. Strange that I should know so little when you and I share so much. When […]

[Continue reading...]