Continuing On Despite It All


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This year seems to have been one of loss and struggling through the mess and the aftermath. There have been many things over the past several months, some shocking and others mundane, but all full of letting go, cleaning up, and moving on.

This has been a year of …

  • Major loss of hours at work.
  • Loss of friends.
  • Breakdown of a relationship.
  • Breaking down of cars, appliances, plumbing, etc.
  • Disappearance and (possible) death of a cat we fed and cared for.

Some problems, of course, came with easy–if not inexpensive–fixes. However, others left only questions.

I have prayed, seeking guidance and answers from God. So far, no answers have come.

What do we do when life continues in the muddle of brokenness and unfulfilled desires and questions and worries and pain?

Today I baked cinnamon cookies.

It was a small little goal that was easily finished on a busy day. Cleaning up the stray crumbs after bringing the first batch out of the oven, I thought about the blessings that remained even after everything.

There’s only one question now.

What will I do if my prayers aren’t answered and the miracles don’t come?

Reading Kaitlyn Bouchillon’s upcoming book, Even If Not: Living, Loving, and Learning in the in Between, I am encountering some confirmation of my feelings at this moment:

“He may answer our questions, but even if not we have the Answer above all answers. And the truth is, even when we don’t have all the answers we so long for, we don’t actually need to know the future. We just need to trust the One who authors it into being.”


Sometimes it takes a bunch of heartache and pain and worry that just continues and continues and continues to bring you to your knees.

And if the answers don’t come? Or the changes we desire? Or the blessings and miracles and dreams?

Can we still praise God and say that Jesus is enough?

Drinking some afternoon coffee and eating one of my homemade cookies, I can finally smile a little and say, “Yes.” I will trust Him and praise Him, even in the middle of my mess and even if those answers never come.




Being Daring (for the Small of Heart)

Photo by MichaelKirsh on

Photo by MichaelKirsh on

Awhile back, I was at one of the lowest points in my life.  Previous to this, I had taken my self image from my career and so couldn’t imagine what I would be otherwise.

When I injured my back, though, I had to take time off from work. Taking painkillers and lying alone in my apartment, I wondered if things would ever return to normal. The pain was excruciating, and my source of identity was gone. I spent my time having my own pity party and worrying about the bills that relentlessly piled up on my coffee table.

Through treatment and very light exercise, my condition gradually improved, but this was no consolation at the time. It honestly seemed I had nothing to lose as I was still unable to work.

Having healed enough to go out for short trips, I decided to go to the grocery store. Normally this particular store would play the typical muzak, but that night they were playing something a bit different. Walking down the baking aisle, I heard the beginning of “Proud Mary” by Creedence Clearwater Revival.

I was not a fan of 1960’s music, but I just couldn’t help but move (just a bit) and lip sync (only a tiny bit). Normally a shy and introverted person, I had been stripped of all my caring by that point and so just had some fun right there with the flour and baking soda.

Flash forward several years, and a similar thing happened this summer. Personal issues had taken me down, beaten me over the head, and left me to dry. I was overwhelmed and wondering what would come next.

Now a Christian, I turned to Jesus rather than an old song. I prayed and read His Word. I took His promises on faith because I really had nothing left. And I healed. Just like David, I could finally dance. This time not in the middle of a grocery store, but in my everyday-working-cooking-cleaning-baking life.

If only I could have been that daring and that willing to believe without such significant pain. But some of us are pretty darned stubborn and need a push into oblivion.

If I can encourage you right now, though, I would say be daring right now. Trust God and dance even on a Monday.

Lucan quote with link

Getting Bouncy in My Old Age

Picture by floppy2009 on

Picture by floppy2009 on

Lately it seems like much of my energy has been centered around changes. Yes, boys and girls, I mean those “I’m feeling my age and everything is falling apart” sort of changes.

I remember that when I was younger I looked at the older women and assured myself I would never experience any of their problems. I, through sheer willpower, would avoid the effects of age entirely. Yes, I would be that rare unicorn of a person who never aged and was forever young.

Yeah, right.

Now, working much of the time at a computer, I find myself wondering where that easygoing life went. I have a regimen of supplements that I take each day, a new supplement of progesterone cream, exercise that I’m supposed to do–but often don’t as I’m too tired–etc, etc. I even recently purchased a rebounder as the exercise is supposed to be easy on the joints. And don’t forget bifocals. Yes, bifocals.

Nothing is quite as it used to be, and there’s a noticeable sag in various places, certainly not what I expected.

And yet, I have to say that I am blessed. I survived cancer at age 31 and am still here to tell the tale. I can bounce on my new rebounder even as I attempt to keep other parts of me from bouncing too much. And unlike a couple of years ago, I have a good job that  keeps me busy even as it provides us with our needs.

Maybe I didn’t turn out to be a unicorn as I expected, but I am blessed more than I deserve.

Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. —James 1:17


Hey, there! How are you? If you like cute pics and encouraging posts, then you might enjoy my Instagram too! 

Co-Agents in Marriage


Picture from rickyysanne on

Picture from rickyysanne on

Perhaps you haven’t yet thought about the possibility that there are secret agents living in your neighborhood and working with you. They might appear to be normal individuals—mothers, college students, and workers. Friendly and unassuming, they might never reveal their hidden identity. Still, there are times when they may be focused on their smartphones, especially when around pieces of public art or community centers. Or sometimes they might take quite a bit longer to go to the grocery store than expected.

Who are these people? They are agents for either the Enlightenment or Resistance in the game, Ingress. The game is an augmented reality game, one in which “portals” seen only by looking at a smartphone are superimposed on our physical world. Players fight for control over these portals and thus the population. There’s a lot more to the game, of course, but those are the basics. Starting with a small beta, the game has grown to be a worldwide phenomenon with agents cooperating in enormous tasks for their team.

My husband learned about the game early on when the game was still in beta. He played a bit at that point but returned in force when we both got smartphones. He was insistent that I join the Resistance and therefore be able to help him in the fight for XM. And my reaction? I was a little annoyed by the prospect. Why travel around to play a game when I could be reading a novel? I finally relented, though, and formed an account.

I realize now that my initial annoyance was selfish on my part; marriage often includes doing things we might not normally think of doing otherwise in an attempt to bring happiness to our spouse. Indeed, this service is described in the latest book that I am reading, an advance copy of The Story of Marriage by John and Lisa Bevere. Prioritizing our lives in favor of God and our spouse—along with a right heart and spirit—will lead to making your own desires last. I’ll admit that this hasn’t always been easy for me, and I often fail. But with God’s grace I’m getting there, slowly but surely.

It would cost me only a bit of time to make my husband very happy, and little did I know that this game would provide a fun point of unity for our marriage, giving us an escape from our daily tasks while allowing us to be co-agents for the Resistance. While some married couples might jog together, we go out and play Ingress. It is purely nerdy fun and provides some much-needed relief from stress. Battling together for portals, we have found togetherness in our marriage as well as camaraderie with local players.

While initially my participation was reluctant, Ingress for us has become a major way to enjoy ourselves as a couple and provides a point of bonding for us. I gave up my own time—and my doubts about this game—and benefited greatly by serving my husband. We become co-agents for the Resistance when we fight the Enlightenment, thus bringing us a bit further in our pursuit to become co-agents in marriage as well.

In Memory of…


Lambie alone with text


Our little dog, Anakin, went to the Rainbow Bridge this week after a long fight with cancer. Pictured above is Lambie, the toy that comforted him during his chemo and beyond. Anakin was a loving and brave companion who enjoyed snuggling and long walks with his dad.

We’re taking a bit of time to adjust, and so I won’t be posting for a little while. I’ll be back soon, though.

Unexpected Problems: Or, the Story of a Life


unexpectedproblemsToday, right before my next shift was about to begin, my husband came thundering up the stairs. “What’s happening?” he yelled. “A pipe is leaking in the basement!”

Great. Definitely not how I had expected to begin the day.

A pipe in one of our basement rooms had sprung a leak, spraying water over the contents of one of our shelves and the floor. “I need your help, now!” my husband told me. Unfortunately, I couldn’t help him as my work shift would soon begin.


As with so many problems, this one hadn’t been expected. Not a super-bad problem as in someone going to the hospital, but I was still bummed. Majorly. As the water had been turned off to stop the impromptu basement shower, I began thinking of all the parts of my day that this would affect, everything from flushing the toilet to washing the dishes. Yes, I was instantly down in the dumps. That perspective only deepened when we heard from the plumber that he couldn’t help us until tomorrow. Yup, not what I had planned at all.

My husband continued working downstairs as my own work began online. And my viewpoint–and my mood–began to shift. Luckily, we had caught the problem early, and so no major damage to that room occurred. Too, my husband was there to clean up and prepare the room for the plumber, allowing me to finish my own work upstairs. And by golly, we had prepared for such a problem by having water stored in our home. Yes, I was seeing things a bit differently.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I would have much preferred for that pipe to stay intact this morning. But life has a way of putting bends in our roads, whether a burst pipe or a lost job. This pessimist is trying to think of this particular kink in my plans as a blessing in disguise. We were prepared–somewhat–and we have each other. That certainly doesn’t make me Pollyanna, but it’s a start.