What do beans, abiding in Christ, and joy share?

What do beans, abiding in Christ, and joy share?
Sometimes joy and laughter sneak in while we play. Our daughter and I sit cross-legged on her bed's light purple quilt. We spread out colorful cards for the game Bohnanza on her bed. When my nieces introduced us to the game, I was skeptical. How could a game based on buying, planting, trading and selling different beans be fun? Photo of Bohnanza cards used with permission of Flickr User: Ask Dave Taylor The bigger the group of people who play, the more wild the trading and yelling of competin... [More]

On asking for joy?

On asking for joy?
I don't often think of Jesus caring about my experience of joy although joy is part of my relationship with God (Gal. 5:23-24). I feel like I'm peering into the Grand Canyon with this topic. Morning light streams in from windows as I sit at my kitchen table. I've read this verse before but it shines into my heart in a new way. "Up until now you have asked nothing in my name, 'Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.'' - Jesus says to his disciples in John 16:24. This verse is part... [More]

On cilantro, 4th of July and small beginnings

On cilantro, 4th of July and small beginnings
Sometimes a single thing can be the be the catalyst for a new creation. Every Fourth of July, our neighborhood holds a block party where we share food, drinks and conversation. Children twist red, white and blue streamers together to decorate tables and the home of Carla, our street's "mayor." A group of adults moves drinks onto tables and into ice-filled coolers. My husband grills chicken-apple sausages and slices watermelon for the potluck. Someone made a salad with spaghetti noodles, cilant... [More]

Top 10 Things I learned in June

Top 10 Things I learned in June
In no particular order (movie reviews, creativity and lots more)....but I share with gratitude: 1. Getting some friendly advice about Twitter from Emily Freeman...what a sweet surprise! @SoulStops yay! Friendly twitter tip - if you start your tweet with an @ then the only people who see it are those who follow us both :) — emily p freeman (@emilypfreeman) June 1, 2015 2. This post by Charity S. Craig reminds me to be careful of what I say when I write and when I hear someone's story. Bu... [More]

When you mow a lawn...(& unexpected grace)

When you mow a lawn...(& unexpected grace)
I drive and listen to a man on the radio share how after he mowed his lawn, he felt God telling him to mow his neighbor's lawn, two doors away. I imagine him admiring the short green grass on his tidy lawn (assuming he's not in drought-stricken California) then looking at his neighbor's tall and straggly grass. He thought, "Why not?" since his mower was already out. Photo used with permission of: Kevin Dooley Later he discovered his neighbor had had a stroke. He said it was nothing to him, bu... [More]