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    The decision to love another human being is seldom a conscious one, and falling in love with my husband certainly wasn’t an item on my to-do list. I didn’t anticipate loving him, didn’t want to have to trust him, and truthfully didn’t even think love could happen for me again. So when he looked me straight in the eyes that Christmas night and said “I love you,” my life changed forever. That moment began a journey of learning that real love doesn’t look like it does in the movies, and it taught me that God’s love is always redemptive and is always better than Hollywood’s. When my husband walked into my life, I was a woman deeply wounded. A divorce after ten years of marriage had left me shattered and weak, struggling to understand who I was now and where my life was headed. I believed I was unlovable, knew I was damaged goods, and trusted I’d always be alone. My brokenness was my story, and my sadness was my burden. Love? It just wasn’t for me. A happy ending wouldn’t be my story. But God intervened, as He is prone to do, and He changed the narrative I had written for myself. He gently...


  Dear World, What have we allowed to happen to us? When did we collectively agree that our lives could be ruled by electronic rectangles, and why did we give the virtual world so much power over the real one? Why do we allow social media alerts to take precedence over the people we're having dinner with, and why do we interrupt real-life conversations for those sent via text message? When did politeness give way to productivity, and why are special moments interrupted for selfies? What in the world have we allowed to happen to us? We've created a life where we can't fully be with the people we're with because we're so concerned about what's going on where we aren't. We've become a generation of people who find our worth in likes and comments and who can't fathom not posting every detail of our days. We've said it's acceptable to have thousands of virtual friends and few real ones and to spend more time Snapchatting our acquaintances than speaking to our families. It's insanity, world, and we can do better. We have to do better. The chemical dopamine is an interesting thing. It is released when we encounter a reward, prompting us to repeat the reward's cause. This is why...


  There is a risk God has asked you to take, and there's an excuse you're giving for why you won't move ahead. What is that risk? Will you give it a name and acknowledge its existence? Less than a year ago, God told me to quit my job. He didn't speak in a booming voice, and there was no literal writing on the wall, but through a series of gut feelings and confirmations from others - including people I didn't even know - I had no doubt about what he was saying. He was saying it was time for something new. And I was scared to death.   The risk he was asking me to take was to quit my job and trust him, and the excuses I gave were varied and justifiable. What about money? What about the house we just bought? What about the fact that I know absolutely nothing about the path you're pushing me down? What will people think? What about my lack of qualifications? Oh, I had a million excuses for not moving ahead, and even looking back now, they were legitimate and very pressing. But they were also rooted in fear. I knew what I was supposed to do. The wheels had been in motion for...


  What a strange, complicated, divisive few days these have been. The inauguration of our new President has brought out strong emotions in virtually everyone I know, and the internet has shown me the opinions of those I've never met. I never want to contribute to the negative noise so present online, and I'm praying these words will provide hope in the midst of these times. I'm praying my words will ease the sting of words directed to you, public school teacher, and that my words will serve as a reminder that words matter, words can hurt, and though the words of others may be loud, they can still be untrue. It was said to our country that ours is "an education system flush with cash, but which leaves our young and beautiful students deprived of all knowledge." When I heard these words spoken by a very powerful man, my eyes filled with tears. A deep sadness overtook me for what you heard and what is believed about you. Then an abiding anger made me shake and made me want to shout the truth from the rooftops. Although I am not currently a teacher, I am only months removed from that sacred occupation, and I know...