As I stood in the hospital room, looking down at my eleven-year-old sister taking her last few breaths, I asked a question we all ask God in a trial: “Why?” My mind was making no sense as to what was happening and why it was so sudden. I have been reminded over the years not to question God but to trust His ways are higher than our own. In this moment, I thought I could be excused from that advice. Little did I know those were and still are words that sustain my peace and strength. I silently prayed, “I can’t do this without You, God.” I continued to pray for His will to happen even when I had no clue what that really meant for my sister or me.
In these moments we learn to get real with God—when … Read More »
When I was eight years old, my parents started a North American Missions (NAM) church in Millersburg, Ohio. For the first four months, our services were held in a school gymnasium before we moved to the church we currently rent. A year later we moved from our hometown of Coshocton, Ohio, to Millersburg. As a nine year old girl, this was quite exciting. A new town, new house, new people. On the flip side, it meant moving away from my friends, family, and the house I grew up in and loved.
When we first moved to Millersburg, I was friends with one girl. That was great, but being homeschooled meant I really didn’t have a place where I was forced to make friends. Also, there were no kids in the neighborhood we moved to so I felt pretty isolated. But … Read More »
Snow, bright lights, good food, warm fires, family, friends—’tis the season! As the cool weather sets in, there is a refreshing expectancy in the air. The smell of pumpkin spice fills the atmosphere, and cinnamon tickles the senses of those enamored with the holiday spirit. The malls are hustling with shoppers, and the economy is once again boosted by those looking for “that perfect gift.”
But through all the festivities and gatherings, smiles and laughter, there are lonely hearts abiding in silence. It seems wherever you go, there is always a degree of pressure when it comes to the relationship scene, and it seems the pressures heighten during the holiday season. Loneliness appears as an unwanted holiday gift. Whether it be a lack of family relationships, friend relationships, or even companion relationships, none are easy to cope with when you … Read More »
(Names and dates have been changed to protect the identity of the persons in this following story. Okay, I confess, it was me!)
I’ll never forget that Tuesday night of Oklahoma camp meeting. As I got comfortable in my bunk I relayed this message to my cousin, “I’m in love and I think I want to marry her!” I am embarrassed by this confession. The truth is, I was twelve and she was an older woman, she was every bit of fifteen. Yes, at the age of twelve I was ready to shoot right past the communication and friendship stage and go straight for courtship and marriage. What can I say; I was mature for my age (yeah right)!
Sometimes it seems like we are trying to bypass one of the greatest benefits that the opposite gender can give us … and … Read More »
Have you ever wished you were someone else? As kids we always liked to play games that allowed us to be someone else. I remember, getting on my bike and riding around the neighborhood with my fake guns, pretending I was a cop, or a robber, depending on how I felt that day. Have you ever grabbed a wad of paper, and started the countdown, as if there were only a few seconds left on the clock, and you had the basketball, and were down by one? Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a king or a queen? Have you ever pretended to be a superhero? No doubt you may have tried to imagine what it would be like to be a celebrity, a sports star, or a famous person.
Many times we even have become … Read More »