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How I Want to Be Remembered

Have you ever thought about what someone would say in your eulogy? Would they remember your killer meatloaf recipe? Your business savvy? Your awesome sense of humor? Would they talk about your faith? How your life inspired them? Read More

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Faith Like A Child

We’re all familiar with the phrase, “faith like a child” or “child-like faith,” so let’s attention to all the things our KIDS can teach US about God!
Today, we have our first guest post here at Scattered Woman. Hooray! Please welcome Jessica Meades and tune your heart to what God would like to speak to you through her.

Welcome, Jessica! Read More

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I’d Rather Have a Piano: Living in Plan B

 Once upon a time, a young couple decided to get married and went shopping for an engagement ring. At the store, the woman spotted a positively gorgeous ring. “It’s perfect!” she exclaimed, and asked the shopkeeper if he would pull it out for them to look at. The shopkeeper noted, as he reached for the ring, “You have good taste. This is the most expensive ring I have in the store!”

Sadly, the price was much more than they could afford, so they left the store and continued down the street, sobered by their recent reality check. A few moments later, they passed by a music shop with a grand piano in the window.

“You know what?” the woman said. “I think I’d rather have an engagement piano.”

The man smiled, “You know what? I think I’d rather buy you one!” Read More

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What’s in a Name? – Part 3

  

Perhaps this entry would more accurately be titled “What’s NOT in a Name”. Peter figured out the answer to that question pretty quickly! Check out the account of Simon receiving his new name from Jesus, Peter, and what happens immediately after that event: Read More

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What’s in a Name? – Part 2

In What’s in a Name? – Pt. 1, I talked about the importance of the names we use with each other. In this segment, I’m shifting to focus on the names God gives us.

A while back, I went through a study on Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers – the story of the prophet Hosea set in the 1850s California Gold Rush. It is quite possibly the most powerful book I have ever read. It also deals a lot with the power of names. Angel, the lead character of the story, goes by many names throughout the book, but she keeps her real name carefully guarded. She shares it with no one, not even her husband.

The incredible part is that in her real name is all the promise of who she really is, who she wants to be, and who she is so afraid she never will be. (I won’t spoil the book for you by telling you her names and how it all turns out – I want you to read it for yourself!)

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What’s in a Name? – Part 1


Over the past several years, I have come to realize just how important names are. Such a seemingly small thing to call someone by their given name, but it makes such a huge difference in how that someone responds to me. Each year when I was a Resident Director I used get feedback from students on our ResLife Survey that say things like “My RD is awesome. She actually knows my name.” Wow… Is it that uncommon for someone to know their names? Read More

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Excuses, Excuses

[Jesus] said to him, “Do you want to get well?”
“Sir,” the sick man answered, “I don’t have anyone to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, but while I’m coming, someone goes down ahead of me.”

~ John 5: 6-7 (HCSB)

Man, do I resonate with this guy. Excuses, excuses. Legitimate excuses, but excuses and self-pity nonetheless. All Jesus wanted to know was if he wanted to get well.

Duh! Of course, I want to get well! But I’m all alone here. I have no one to help me!

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A Refreshing Drink for My Spirit


“Like a snow-cooled drink at harvest time is a trustworthy messenger to the one who sends him; he refreshes the spirit of his master.”

~ Proverbs 25:13

As an introvert, I never anticipated needing people to help me feel refreshed. But after transitioning from a busy Resident Director, constantly surrounded by students and other staff, to being a stay-at-home-mom to one bouncy toddler, I found myself growing lonely. No more were there random students popping in just to say ‘hi’ throughout the day. Handfuls of college women (and sometimes a few college men) were no longer piling into our living room to watch “Once Upon a Time” and just enjoy being together for an hour. My lunch dates no longer have boy troubles or girl drama for me to help them process. My world suddenly got very, very small. Read More

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Triumph in Trouble

“The fear of the Lord leads to life; then one rests content, untouched by trouble.”
~ Proverbs 19:23
“If there is a God, and He’s so good, why does He let bad things happen to His people?” It’s a common quandry among those struggling to believe, but this verse in Proverbs redirects our perspective: It’s not about why He allows trouble to come, but how He protects us in the midst of it. I can hear my disbelieving readers’ harrumph from here. “God doesn’t protect His people. They’re tortured, killed, or given over to illness every day. Just like everyone else,” you say. Yes, yes they are. What I’m learning, however, is that God’s protection isn’t necessarily a here-and-now, physical shield. It’s a promise that no matter what attacks us in body, our spirit will remain indominable, and our future is secure.

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The (Wo)Man in the Mirror


“As water reflects the face, so one’s life reflects the heart.”
~Proverbs 27:19 (NIV)


The past several days have been eye-opening for me as a parent. C & I started potty training last Wednesday, and it was an intense, lonely few days of me just home with C, focusing solely on her, and not being able to take care of anything else. Honestly, it brought out the ugly in me, and I’m not terribly proud of how often I completely melted down once Erik came home. Changes, in general, tend to make me anxious, and big changes to my daily life – like switching from the relative ease of diapers to having to be uber vigilant about not letting a toddler pee or poop on the floors – are enough to send me into full-blown panic attacks. That said, C is doing really well with learning to use the potty and I’m aware (once again) how badly I tend to blow things out of proportion when I let fear get the best of me.
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A Strong City Wall

 

“Help your relatives and they will protect you like a strong city wall, but if you quarrel with them, they will close their doors to you.”

~ Proverbs 18:19

 

Why are family relationships so doggone hard? Our families have the ability to build us up or to completely destroy us with just a few words. And because we’re family, and “have” to love each other no matter what, we tend to think it’s okay to be careless with our words. They should just “get us” enough to be able to explode at them and say what we really think extremely tactlessly, regardless if it hurts their feelings or not. If it’s not safe to “blow up” with your family, then where IS it safe?

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God is God – And I Am Not!

 

“When my little sister comes, we’re going to do this! When my little sister comes, we’re going to do that!” I happily prophesied, as only a four-year-old little girl can, while I played with my dolls amongst the clothes and shoes in my mom’s closet.

Oh, boy… Thought my mom, greatly pregnant with her third child. I’d better nip this one in the bud.

“You know, Laura, we don’t get to choose if we get a boy baby or a girl baby. God just gives us whatever He thinks we need,” she presented logically.

Not deterred in the least, I slammed my fists onto my hips and declared, “Well, SURELY, GOD KNOWS we don’t need another little boy!” Read More

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Nobody’s Perfect!

It’s been a long two years of being angry, bitter, and frustrated with God. Health issues, adjusting to motherhood while still working, then adjusting to motherhood while NOT working, three moves… It all piled up on me and left me feeling very alone and abandoned by the God I had previously leaned on for everything and trusted implicitly. Read More

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Homebuilding in the Desert

Erik & I had a long conversation the other night about how we are struggling to get plugged into a church, friendships, etc., after moving to Kentucky back in August. It feel like we’re living in a friendship desert. I was still mulling over our Relational Sahara situation when this post from 2008 came to mind. Now this command is reverberating in my brain:

Make yourselves at home.” 

~Jeremiah 29, MSG Read More

Whitewashed Tombs

 

 

 

“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. Blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside also will be clean. Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.”
Matthew 23:25-28 
“I just want it clean, okay?”
I slammed the used micro-fiber cloth into the laundry basket, frustrated with Erik for not understanding the importance of having a spotless house when our guests arrived.

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A Reminder to Have Faith

Today, more than any day in recent memory, I needed a reminder to just have faith. My job has been completely overwhelming this year, which has led to even more stress and sickness than usual, and this past week has been one sucker punch to the stomach after another. Three student crises – two while I was out of town for my best friend’s wedding and another one on a day when students were supposed to be on break – nearly have me throwing up my hands in surrender, waving a white flag, and doing whatever else is necessary to get the world to give me a break! Read More

Go Jonah, Preach to the Gentiles – WHAT?!?!

How many times have I read through the old Testament? Apparently not enough to make a connection between the story of Jonah and the prophet Nahum! Jonah finally gets his act together and preaches in Ninevah, and the people repent and turn to God. Nahum is preaching against Assyria – and it’s capitol, NINEVAH! Has anyone else never caught that before?? Read More

Lessons from HIStory: Oh, Asa…

There are days I wonder what in the world the kings of Israel and Judah were thinking. Today is one of those days.

I just finished reading the story of Asa, king of Judah in 2 Chronicles 14-16. Asa did incredible things as a leader of God’s people because he “was a good king. He did things right in God’s eyes.” (14:1) He took a strong stand for God and was rewarded with years of peace at the beginning of his reign. He said, “We have this peaceful land because we sought God; he has given us rest from all troubles.” (14:7)
But something happened to Asa in chapter 16. After 36 years of success and prosperity as king, he somehow forgot Who was really in charge. Baasha, king of Israel, started attacking Judah, building a fort at Ramah, effectively keeping Asa locked in Jerusalem, and Asa completely lost who he was and Who would take care of him.

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Lessons from HIStory: One Bad Apple

Over the last month or so, I’ve been reading in 1 and 2 Kings each morning. But the past few days, I’ve really wanted to throw my Bible across the room after reading. How many bad, God-dishonoring kings can one nation have?? Every once in a blue moon I read about one that “did what was right in God’s eyes,” but that statement is so often followed by “except he didn’t tear down the sex & religion shrines.” There’s always that but following the “good” kings like a horrible shadow.

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Back to the Bottom Line

I get so off-track sometimes thinking certain things are important or this big point is the one thing I need to focus on, when in actuality, I’m nowhere close to understanding the basic point of life and the gospel. In the beginning of Luke 13, some people came to Jesus and told him about all these Galileans being killed by Pilate while they were offering sacrifices. What horrific news! Jesus was from Galilee, too; surely he would want to know what had happened to people he might have known. Instead, Jesus brings the focus of the discussion back to the most important part: “Unless you turn to God, you too will die.” (v.3,5)
I wonder if the news-bearers really were wanting Jesus to verify if these victims were “worse sinners than all other Galileans” (v.2). It wouldn’t surprise me if they were asking for back-up on their wrong thinking; don’t we do the same thing? We see hurricanes, floods, tsunamis, droughts, epidemics, wars, and more all around the world, and we’re so quick to judge those affected, thinking that God must have been punishing them for their sins or all these horrible things wouldn’t have happened.
If we’re using that logic, the little girl walking home from school who is kidnapped, raped, and murdered must have done something terrible to deserve such treatment. Thank God He doesn’t use our logic! The horrifying things that happen in this world are not God punishing us for our poor behavior – they cannot be since we know that it is God’s desire that all people should come to a saving knowledge of him (1 Timothy 2:4), not be killed before they have a chance to really know Him. All the injustice that happens is simply part of living in a fallen world. It has nothing to do with God’s heart for all people.
Jesus recognized the uselessness of addressing the “who’s to blame” question when people brought tragedies to his attention, wanting validation for their holier-than-thou attitudes. His focus, instead, was on bringing their attention to the real bottom line: without being in relationship with God, we’re going to die, too. The point is not to dwell on all the awful things that frequently invade our fields of vision or get caught up in being better than so and so, but to remember that we are all mortal. We’re going to die just like all these other victims do. But, we have a choice; we can choose to live for God here and be assured our souls will have eternal life with Him when the time comes that we die in the flesh, or we can choose to live without Him and die once in the flesh and then again repeatedly for eternity.
I’m choosing to trust God’s heart for me, even in the midst of all the heartbreaking events of our lifetime. I choose to believe that though my body may fail, my soul will live on with Him. I will keep praying for victims of disaster and malice, for their families and loved ones left behind, and I will do my best to refocus our attention on the True Bottom Line.