Posts Tagged ‘family’

Just Walking It Out

Wednesday, November 8th, 2017

I spent hours on the phone with an old friend from seminary days today. We had a lot of catching up to do. So much has happened since our last conversation; I’ve been on a faith journey with my hubby’s unemployment and she, along with her family closed the door on a “cushy” ministry life/job in Alabama and moved to NEW YORK CITY to church plant.

Yea, I’m thinking of changing the name of my blog to The Chronicles of a Whiny Christian at this point. Who am I? What is my problem? Why can’t I be holy enough? Sacrificial enough? Willing to let THINGS go? All things. Not only stuff things. Dumb life things.

I appreciate that God is so loving to me that He lavishes me with life perspectives in all sorts of creative ways. Obviously, He knows my wormy pathetic’ness and goes above what He must have to with “normal” folks just to get my attention.

I have the flesh of a hundred humans.

I feel everything. Times a hundred. If it can be dramatized, sister has a show in store for ya. All I’ve done in this life is behave like a dang drama queen. I am the worst!

Don’t feel sorry for me (there I go again!) because I need to crash here and there to recognize my need to rest from all my chaos. Self-induced chaos at that. I’ve confessed repeatedly my tendency to pick up trouble & worry as attributes. I cannot hide that I love to fret and freak over just about every single thing.

Got an issue? Just let me know, I’ll stress over it for you.

I fired off questions to my fancy NYC friend and she answered every one of my curiosities with grace. As if, she had a choice. I’ve never been to New York, ever. All I know about the Big Apple I’ve learned from others and tv. Surely, I sound pretty lame but everything I’ve ever heard makes me feel completely intimidated. It’s also DANGEROUS there! Like, people die or get killed every day in all sorts of ways. Okay, they die here in the Indy area too. But, NEW YORK CITY!!! Come on. You know what I mean, right?

I know about those muggings!!! I watch movies!

Do you know how hard it is to buy a bedroom dresser? It’s ridiculous! In my world, if I want to purchase furniture….I do it and go get it. With my fancy vehicle (yea, they ditched their cars to serve Jesus in NYC!) I cruise on down the road (and yea, if I sit in traffic at a red light too long…I get JERKY!!!) and pick up my furniture and go home with it. That’s not quite how it gets done in NYC. She told me some of the crazy hoops they’ve had to jump through just to buy a dang dresser from IKEA.

They travel by foot and subway.

My life. Seriously.

I’m not trying to put anyone on a pedestal of faith here, she wouldn’t dare let me. I told her how impressed I was by her willingness to sacrifice so much and she mentioned all the need for Christ in NYC. Did I mention this lady is leaps and bounds ahead of me in spiritual maturity? Why WOULDN’T she give up her cushy life to serve God in bustling New York? Uhh, duh. Yea. I was thinking all that too.


After talking all morning, I got the feeling that all my troubles…the things I’ve felt so wrecked over here in my easy life are really not so gigantic afterall. I have so many simple luxuries that I take for granted. The things that I think I cannot do, I absolutely CAN DO! Nothing is so difficult, perhaps…challenging that I cannot push on through and do.

My ministry (and I do have one when I’m not succumbing to my own disasters) is to walk my walk right here where I am this very moment. Like my precious friend in NYC, she’s walking her ministry out there…doing just what God has called her and her family to do. God isn’t expecting me to do what she is doing. He’s called her to walk her road (or busy 5th Avenue, whichever) and me to mine here in Indiana. I need to stop comparing my journey with everyone else and so do you!

Just walk out your faith friend. Wherever it is God is calling you to walk.

And, something very important…. Don’t look back!

She Said Yes

Tuesday, December 27th, 2016

a and b

Love cannot be quenched in my family. Why should it? With all that life throws at us, love is the glue that holds us all together.

From the day she called to tell me about a crush on a guy who came through her drive-thru window at the bank, I knew. This girl of mine who loves deeply and sets her standards high… true love came knocking in the form of an artsy, thoughtful, level-headed handsome guy named Bobby (Robert, to some).

love lo

That first date (coffee at Starbucks) morphed into a four-year courtship filled with ups & downs, twists & turns….and lots of fun exciting moments. So much growing up, growing together and patiently waiting for the right time to take that next step, in love.

It’s been a beautiful journey. As a mother, I’ve enjoyed watching them strategically take every step necessary to get them to this day.

all b eng

What’s better than having a daughter get engaged? How about BOTH DAUGHTERS ENGAGED within a month of one another?

I can’t make this stuff up!

God, you are funny!

the ring

The truth is we are over the moon for our girls. Both have found the one in whom their soul loves and that’s a blessing to us as parents.

Congratulations Alexandria & Bobby! What a joy to share your love with our whole family! Another wedding…..SQUEEEEEEEE!!

Change Can Feel Cruel

Tuesday, December 20th, 2016


I’m changing.

It feels like a slow erosion of who I once was is turning into a dark broken version of someone else.

I want my life back. I want to be me again. I want to feel okay.

I’m afraid it’s only going to get worse.

Today is day #102 that my husband hasn’t had a job. I cannot believe it. One minute I think I’m okay, that WE’RE okay and the next I realize time is running out and money has dwindled….and doom is literally right around the corner.

It is destroying me. I can only imagine what it’s doing to him.

I can’t help but describe the pain as similar to a death. Something very important has died and it isn’t coming back. Maybe it would feel different if suddenly a job opened up and we could recover some of what we’re about to lose.

In my head, I can’t help but think of the people who caused this pain for me & my family. My whole family is affected by this situation, in case you didn’t know.

I know, for them….they’ve never once thought of what their decision has cost us. They’re still living their lives. They’re still going out for nice meals, spending money on special gifts for people they love and they are smiling, enjoying their days and nights.

That’s not how it is for us.

We are hanging by a thread. Me, especially.

I cannot get over how easy it is to ruin someone’s life and continue on with your own as if nothing ever happened.


I’m starting to question where God is through this journey. { That’s not good }

life me

I’ve fallen so far into a hole of hopelessness. Help me get out before it’s too late. My world is crumbling and I need your mercy.

Grace Growers

Thursday, November 24th, 2016


It’s the wee hours of Thanksgiving morning over here at my house and I’m up doing what I’ll pretty much be doing all day long….opening and closing the oven! As if I were an Olympian level cook.

Somebody had to start the bacon, y’all.

My family is all gathered together, hunkered down under one roof and ready to celebrate all the things we’re THANKFUL for this year. In spite of all that’s happened to us….we have endless amounts of gratitude for every blessing big and small.

We are alive. We are healthy. We are joyful. We are full of hope. We are anticipating every coming blessing and we believe that God has great plans for each of us.

It probably wouldn’t be a stretch to point out that many people are filled with dread and anxiety today as they gather with family and friends. Through the natural process of humanity, we encounter people that we disagree with or just do not get along with at these big holiday gatherings. It can be a rough go for a lot of families that have divisive or feuding family members to share space.

It doesn’t have to end in disaster though.

I have an idea to help you fight the good fight (and I don’t mean a squabble with that one person you find yourself irked with) that will keep peace and help you grow as a Follower of Christ at the same time.

It’s a guarantee, you are going to encounter a GRACE GROWING person over the holiday break. It might not be in your family circle, it could be someone who challenges all your goodness at the Black Friday sale. Someone, somewhere is going to push your buttons. What you do with that….is going to say a lot about you, not them. So, listen up. I’ve got a few tricks to help you get out alive and to be the better person when you’re tempted to flip your lid!


Be serious about your reactions. It’s chaotic in most family celebrations. People are piled together, opinions are flying and how you react is going to be like a thermostat in the room. You can decide before anything offensive or mean-spirited is said to NOT JOIN OR ENGAGE that person back. Some people (hurting people hurt people, right?) say crazy stuff just for YOUR REACTION! Don’t fall for that. So, decide to be a grace giver by NOT REACTING negatively to crummy comments.


This should have been first… but PRAY. Really pray. You already know who it is that gets under your skin – so pray for them and for yourself to be a loving example to them. It may not change them but it will change you. When you’re staring that person in the face and you’re imagining knocking their weave out, P R A Y to God for sweet words like a honeycomb. You might even find it good to pray scripture. Remember the fruit of the spirit!


Play opposites. You know how to react to keep peace and you probably know how to be creative and play opposites with that negative nelly at the table. Instead of saddling up and arguing it out, combat the ugly comments with a positive. Yesterday, as I stood in a line at Walmart I overheard the lady behind me complain to her son that the checkout clerk WAS SO SLOOOOOW! As she squeezed up closer behind me I realized she wanted a response from me as she commented that “she’s very particular about every scan, huh?”. I laughed and told her that I was probably the least worthy to judge since I could NEVER DO THE JOB of a checkout clerk. I smiled and mentioned that my skills would probably cause a total ruckus in the store to which she laughed and completely changed her attitude. We spent the next few minutes visiting and laughing about all the things still to do to enjoy our holiday. Opposites. They can deflect a rotten moment if we just decide to utilize them to our advantage.


Actually decide to grow in grace. Nasty people aren’t just put in our lives to make us miserable. God wants to use them to refine us and smooth off the edges that are too bumpy. Every frustrating comment, every mean action…even the snarky ones are not your invitation to a duel. God will help you respond with love, He will soften your heart and He will handle any wrong-doing meant to harm you (if you will just LET HIM WORK) from whoever your grace grower person is this Thanksgiving.

“Words kill, words give life; they’re either poison or fruit – you choose.” Prov. 18:21

Who says the holidays have to be so stressful?


Would He Love Me?

Friday, June 3rd, 2016

Greg Conway

Can you see someone you don’t even know and recognize them immediately?

That’s how I felt the moment I clicked on the link that led me to the man who fathered me over 49 years ago. I instantly knew he was part of me. I’ve gone back a hundred times to look at his face and every time, I see something else that’s familiar and me.

I never met him, this man, who was my father. I spent a lifetime wondering who I was and did I look like anyone other than my mother (whom I look very similar to).


I don’t know who is to blame for never having met my father. But, all fingers point directly at my mother. After all, she is the one who raised me. In my heart, I don’t believe she did it to be cruel or neglectful…but in the end, it was both of those things.


The decision to clip someone out of your life forever has to be a hard one. For every facial expression, skin tone, body type….she had to see something of him, in me. How’d she do it?

For most of my life, I never knew.


The person I thought was my dad, kindly fathered me out of his own powerful love. I thank him. And, I thank the step-dad who would come along later and love me into young adulthood. Neither of their sacrifice goes unnoticed.

Still, I feel a great loss of my real dad. I can’t help but wonder all the wonders that a mind can think of about such a relationship – – –

Did he want me?
Did he think of me?
Did he try to see me?
Did he care about me?
Did he punch his dashboard when she walked away?
Did he call her and try to reason with her (for my sake)?
Did he even know about me?

I’ve heard from my aunts that he was a terrific person. He was worthy and upright. He came from a good family. He had a great future ahead of him. Still, I will never know the magnitude of who he really was on this earth. I have no one to ask, no one to see and no one to call.

While I was somewhere across the state in all my high school freshman gawkiness….my dad, Gregory Conway was found shot to death sitting in his yellow corvette in a Kmart parking lot. I didn’t even know he existed.

His murder is still unsolved.

How do I reconcile never knowing him? For me, I have to turn directly to God for that answer. What was once kept in secret is no longer hidden. Both of my parents are dead now and I’m left with so many unanswered questions. Maybe that’s exactly how it was supposed to be.

Still, I wonder….would he love me?

I’m Letting Go, Really

Tuesday, May 26th, 2015

I’m dead tired. Not a good dead tired either. My brain hurts, my body aches and my heart is all shredded into pieces.

So, how was your long weekend?


While most families were having a grand old time celebrating the long weekend, mine was all wonky with emotions. There were arguments, exhausting and messy packing, misunderstandings, biting comments and total disregard for what anyone else might be feeling.

That’s family, I guess.

I suppose my weekend was just another little lesson in letting go. I thought I had been doing a pretty good job of doing just that. Now, not so much.

Growing pains really are a pain.

nothing happens

This morning, I woke up with a little better perspective. My happiness depends on me. It’s not anyone else’s job to make me “feel” joy. It’s not fair for me to put that pressure on anyone around me. However, I can expect to be treated well.

I’ve asked myself some questions this morning. The kind that require SELF EXAMINATION. Ouch, to that…right?

* Were my expectations too high? Probably, but I only have limited time with all 3 of my kids. It’s normal to feel dissed when other activities take the place of time with each other.

* Am I being a toxic mom? Perhaps. Not every question or comment is laced with condemnation. I pray that God would reveal any manipulative word or guilt-filled comment from my mouth (if I speak them to my kids).

* Do I owe my kids anything? I am learning that I owe them respect and room to grow. I have boundaries but so do they. It’s important that those boundaries work both ways.

* Is my heart pure with my frustrations with my kids? I’m praying on this one.

* Do I need to back off? Yes.


Mama’s, no matter what age your kids may be….growing pains sneak in and cause havoc. We can either fight it like a madwoman or we can bow out gracefully and LET GO. I’m working on bowing out. Every. Day.


Can you see the heart? I found it this morning after I took this picture of my pink peonies by my porch. (Thank you Lord, Your love is everlasting!)

letting go