A Few Reads for the Fall

I'm ordering a couple of books today - real books with paper edges to dog-ear and wonderful quotes to underline.  I appreciate my Kindle, but fall just seems like time for a candle, a latte, and a friend-in-the-pages kind of book.

This book, Graceful (For Young Women): Letting Go of Your Try-Hard Life, because I try hard and I know young women who do, too.  And trying hard sometimes gets us to a place of frustration.

And this book by another Emily, Chasing Silhouettes: How to help a loved one battling an eating disorder, because she writes raw and honest and has great perspective, which is one of my favorite things.

One of the most redeeming things about Christ's love is that He takes what was shame to us, our fall from grace and our fallen nature, and uses them for His glory.  God alone redeems our messes, and sharing our story is praising His goodness.  These brave authors make way for praise.

Oh, give thanks to the LORD! Call upon His name; Make known His deeds among the peoples! - {Psa 105:1 NKJV}


What are you reading this fall?  

Why I'll be Using More Paper

Convenience is great.

Accessibility is great.

And I'm all about making things simple and easy.

But I'm also about balance, and one thing I've noticed about myself lately is that my face is often in a screen.  Or maybe, the screen is in my face.

I'm also highly distracted, like ADHD without the H.

All that makes it hard to be a good mom, wife, friend, homemaker...all that makes it hard for me to just stop, put the brakes on, and engage with life.  That thing that happens around me all day.

My lists are on screen.  My books, schedules, dreams and ideas float in bits and bytes, and my eyes are burning.  I appreciate my Kindle for the convenience and cost-saving, but I miss paper.  

The thing is, I change my mind so often about how and where I want to organize those pieces of life that need documented.  I use notebooks, sketch books, journals, sticky notes, evernote, onenote, notes on my phone...

I've tried to be all computerized and organized in digital fashion, because I think that's great.  But the screen sucks my brain and my attention (which is limited).

It's easier to walk away from paper, but this screen cries out to me for just one more...

I have one life to live and one shot at making these memories, the ones my kids will live with.  I don't want to be the mom at the pool that misses the cannonball because of The Screen.  There are baby steps on this road to recovery, and the first one is logging off.

So I'll be using more paper, and hallelujah, I've found a wonderful notebook that makes me giddy. (I'm simple like that).

The Arc customizable notebook from Staples.  I'm not an affiliate, won't get any money if you click on the link, but if you feel so happy and excited after seeing this thing and you'd like to thank me, we can make arrangements.  *smile*

It's just a little thing, but isn't that what our lives are made up of?  To be faithful in the smallest of things, that's the calling of those called mom and it's the groundwork for bigger faith.  Because nobody who takes care of the little things is ever overlooked in the kingdom of heaven.

He who is faithful in what is least is faithful also in much; and he who is unjust in what is least is unjust also in much. - {Luk 16:10 NKJV}


{Counting gifts and remembering His goodness with community here.}

355.  Again, great fellowship with friends...the Beautiful Feet people.

356. A lost dog and the way Jesus answers prayers

357. leftovers on busy days

358. kids old enough and willing to help a very pregnant friend

359. the ebb and flow of noise and quiet in the house

360. THE GREATEST JOY!  Our youngest, asking to receive Christ right in the kitchen.  Unprompted and out of the blue.  Born again, adopted again, and eternally His!

Oh, Happy Day.  (click and sing along with us?)

 {Why the random picture at the top of the post, you ask?  It's just a good memory from Yellowstone last year, a picture my daughter took.  So it kinda fits, in a peacefully-engaged sort of way.}



For the Ones Who Can't Hear "Beautiful"

You shun it as though it were a four-letter word.  When it comes you refuse to hear, refuse to let it attach to you because, surely, you ought to resist that flattery.

Be humble and all that.


You secretly hope that the words are sincere, and inside you desire to wear them gracefully, to be them and believe them.

But your enemy tells you otherwise and you listen to him instead.  To the father of lies?

You have to choose what you wear.

Let Us make man in our image, according to our likeness ~ Gen. 1:26

Your Father has said beautiful since you were born.  He's made beauty in the world, wonder that you capture with camera or imagination or just sheer enjoyment.

Yet you,

created in His image,

won't listen.

You have eyes to see it all around, but you wonder if it's ok to see it in you.  As if vanity came from simple appreciation.

Is it ok to think that I look nice?You ask me one Sunday before church, and I'm remembering the time of no jeans and no mirrors because I was so weak and so consumed.

Imago Dei.  All of us, the image of God.

Yes.  It is good.

Take a little  time in that mirror and gaze at the image of God.  Be blessed by His beauty and comfortable with your skin, your hair, the color of your eyes and the marks of distinction on your face.

Praise Him for infinite imagination, thank Him for hairspray and mascara and jeans if you must.

And then move on from that mirror and see beautiful  all around you, in others.  Go tell someone they're beautiful and tell them why.  If you don't see beauty then tell them why Jesus is Beautiful.  Talk about Him.

Attach yourself to Beautiful when you can't believe He's attached to you.

When you hear beautiful, wear it.  Be it.

Put it on with your cross and remember the ugly beautiful, the One Story so dangerously beautiful that it saved you from being forever ugly.

Someday, when your husband tells you you are beautiful, believe him.  Believe him because refusing to hear beautiful is calling him a liar.

There will be unlovely days and sweat-pant days and days of acne and bloating and extra pounds.  There will be days when no one says beautiful to you, but won't you still hear it?

Won't you listen to the One Who is inside, who created you imago dei and ever lives to display Himself through all His creation? Through you?

Believe Him because refusing to hear beautiful is calling Him a liar.

Because, really, beauty-full is what you are.  Don't cover that up.

{And by the way, beautiful is for boys, too.}

 and here at (in)Motherhood