Obedient Next

Elisabeth Elliot’s famous encouragement, “Pick up the broom, and do the next thing” graced my growing-up years. Mom shared this motto with me first, and often it literally involved grasping the broom and sweeping the floor. As time passes, this phrase becomes more and more inspiring and brings hope to more than just my chores.

Lately all the extra time at home has given me an excuse to procrastinate on the little things and to be nervous about the big things. Little things like pantry organization and big things like a loved one’s lost job.

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Back Together But Feeling Alone

Near the end of the book Little Women, the March family celebrates a joyful reunion after much separation and heartache. Laughter, tarts, hot biscuits, and a wedding to discuss. The young and old rejoice in being together once again in the Orchard House.

But our heroine Jo March — no stranger to restlessness — feels an ache amidst the merriment. Much has changed since they had last gathered.

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Appetites & Legacies: Making His Commandments Mine

What does your Bible look like? Is it dog-eared and tear-traced? Crisp with gold edges? Does it even matter?

I think yes … and no.

Charles Spurgeon said, “A Bible that’s falling apart usually belongs to someone who isn’t.” But on the flip side, a tattered cover to our copy of Scripture could be a pharisaical “whitewashed tomb” if it hasn’t penetrated our souls.

And yet, there’s a legacy for well-used Bibles. My family and friends’ tangible Bibles have had a significant impact on my appetite for His Word over the years.

It began with Grandma.

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Even Ifs of April

When I was younger, I struggled with fear to the point of not eating for a few days. I’m thankful for that brief season because the truth I gathered then still brings encouragement to me today.

But I’ve never stopped adding to my arsenal of “courage notes” since fear grips in many ways. Thankfully, there are plenty of words from God about anxious thoughts (Ps 94:19). He even commands us not to be anxious.

However, we know the “what if” game (while helpful for creating plots in fiction) has been so easy to slip into lately.

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How Proverbs Shaped My Post High School Friendships

“How Proverbs Shaped My Post High School Friendships” was first published in the Idaho Homeschool magazine, spring edition 2020. Used here with permission.

Group Time began each homeschool morning. My siblings and I raced for the best seats in the living room. After prayer, we opened our Bibles to the book of Proverbs to go around the circle and read a verse at a time. On the fifth of the month I chose my spot in our living room carefully. This strategic move was an attempt to avoid reading aloud particular verses in Proverbs 5 — verses a 14-year-old considers awkward. All of Proverbs is true and wonderful like the rest of God’s Word, but I was perfectly fine if one of my siblings had to read the verses about intimacy out loud instead of me.

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