Accepting Who We Are

“I wish I were different. Why can’t I be more like her (or him)?” Have you ever felt that way? Or how about, “Why do they have to be that way? They are getting on my nerves!” Basic personality traits, mannerisms, appearances, struggles, strengths, talents, and gifts. We take stock of them in ourselves and […]

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Finding Contentment

Have you ever wished for things to be different? That something or someone would change? The apostle Paul surely could have felt that way . . . being stuck in prison when he had been out travelling and evangelizing the known world. Yet Paul said, “I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I […]

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Going Home

There’s something about going home, returning to the place where you were born, where you are always welcome, where you belong. I just returned from a trip to my hometown, Louisville, Ohio, for a family gathering and a speaking engagement. It never ceases to amaze me how my heart begins to swell with happiness as […]

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Seeing God in Creation

A few weeks ago, I traveled to Europe to visit our former exchange student Silvana Milic. Wanting us to make the most of our visit, Silvana took us to see many different parts of her country as well as areas in Italy and Montenegro. One thing that impacted me during our travels was the beauty […]

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Practicing Hospitality

  My mother Jane, me, Silvana and my mother-in-law Sally in Zagreb  Have you ever been completely overwhelmed by how someone made you feel welcome and loved? I recently returned from a trip where those feelings ran strong. June 13-31, I visited a former exchange student Silvana Milic, who stayed with me and my family in […]

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Chasing Away The Thief

My mother whirled around and shouted, “Did you just put your hand in my purse?” The woman behind her jumped off the subway train just as the doors were closing. “Hold your purse in front of you. Pickpockets are bad here,” said Silvana, a friend who accompanied me, my mother, and my mother-in-law on a […]

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Walking Along The Walls

Dubrovnik, Croatia I recently visited Dubrovnik, Croatia, a stunningly beautiful city on the Adriatic Sea. My former exchange student Silvana Milic took me, my mother, and my mother-in-law to visit Dubrovnik last week. Begun as a settlement in the 7th century, Dubrovnik grew into a fortified city by the 9th century. One of the most […]

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Connecting the Older and Younger Ones

Our trip is taking us from Charlotte, NC, to Zagreb, Croatia Silvana (far right) with some members of our family at Patrick’s graduation, 2012 By the time you read this, I should have travelled 4,817 miles across the Atlantic Ocean to Zagreb, Croatia. Part of former Yugoslavia (before it was broken up into 5 different […]

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Standing With Those Who Stand With Us

Thousands of children are saying goodbye today to some special people. These youngsters are moving away from dedicated adults, who have stood by them, encouraged them, and helped them grow socially, intellectually, and personally. It’s the last day of school in Rowan County, where I live. While the prospect of summer vacation gleams on the […]

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Fighting to Stay Connected

My daughters (left to right) Sarah, Katie, and Emily, with me at dinner during our weekend Have you ever had to fight for a good purpose? My daughters and I experienced that very thing recently. We had to fight . . . to be together. Once each year, we plan a “Girls Weekend.” We usually […]

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