The Eli Diaries

It has been a while since I’ve written anything new, and I am SUPER excited to tell you that I am back!! I am thrilled to tell you guys about the new project I am part of… In this series of novellas, the question is asked: What if Jesus were in high school today? Who would he hang out with? What would he say? What would he do? Authors Bill Myers, Melody Carlson, Jeff Gerke, Shawn Hopkins, Tim Shoemaker, and I will each be writing from the perspective of one of Eli’s fellow students: Maggie: the all-school sleep-around Judas: the super-rich friend always looking for an angle Martha: the good, uber-religious girl Tommy: the pessimistic downer Pete: a hot-tempered jock with a bad case of foot-in-mouth disease The first in the series is out today,...

Just Not Good Enough

We might not all say it, but we ALL feel, at one time or another, some of us more often than others, that we are just not good enough. We look at others and see so many who are smarter, prettier, richer. We see girls who seem to have it all together and we get discouraged because we are SO not together. Just about everyone struggles with these feelings. Seriously. I can’t tell you how many girls I’ve talked to who are beautiful, stunning, yet look at themselves in the mirror and think they are the ugliest girl on the planet. Or girls who seem to breeze through even the toughest classes, but are wracked with worry every night before a big test. Sometimes the girls who seem to know everyone feel incredibly lonely and unloved. Becoming a supermodel or a famous...

How Do I Know God’s Will for My Life?

Finding God’s will is a sometimes-overwhelming prospect. While we know a lot for sure, there are others areas that are gray. How do we navigate those areas? This is in my mind right now because my oldest is wrestling through it. As a recent high school graduate, she has a lot of new, adult decisions to make: where to go to school, to church, what to study, who to date…She thought she had at least the first of those all figured out. She chose a college last fall, got scholarships, had her dorm and roommate all picked out and then…circumstances intervened and that fell through. So what does a Jesus-follower do when we don’t know what God wants? When there’s no verse that says, “Go to _____ college,” “Study...

Embracing the Uncomfortable

I hate being uncomfortable. I hate tension. I hate change. I want everyone to be happy and healthy and for life to go smoothly. I want disagreements to be limited to chocolate vs. vanilla or tea vs. coffee (the correct answers being chocolate and coffee, of course!) But..life isn’t like that. There is discomfort and tension and change. There is unhappiness and sickness and disagreements that rip people apart. It’s not that some people enjoy the above-mentioned horrors. But some can manage them better. Unfortunately, I am not one of those people. My husband jokes that, in difficult times, I am like a snapping turtle – I either sink into my “shell” and avoid everyone, or I come out snapping off fingers and toes! Lately, I have bounced...

Hanging On

This morning, our family visited friends in the Imperial Valley, an agricultural area about two hours east of us. My husband, David, had the privilege of spending six years there as a pastor’s kid, and he maintains many of the relationships he forged there. One of those was the couple we visited today – David’s youth leaders! Along with some great stories of pre-teen David, the kids got shooting lessons and sage advice. We also got to see several dozen date trees. I had never seen a date tree! Or maybe I had, but I just called it a palm tree and didn’t realize there was fruit beneath the fronds. But there is fruit. A lot of fruit! As Gary picked one off the branch, he bit it to show us the inside – it looks a lot like an apple, but...