My Top 5 Most Encouraging Songs

I tied my shoes the other day for my semi-daily run, turned on my earbuds, and set my “favs” playlist to shuffle before turning onto one of my three usual routes. It wasn’t until I had crossed the highway and started running around the park close to our house that I noticed a theme: each…

Why Excellence Matters

“We can’t find anything he has done wrong.” Daniel’s employers had examined all of his work to try to turn him in for something, and they could find nothing. Unless it was his prayer life.  Eight hundred years earlier, a young man named Joseph had faced the same situation. Forced into slavery, he had so…

Nothing to Lose

“I was in Berlin shortly after the wall fell,” the retired pastor leaned forward in his seat. He stopped and cleared his throat, his eyes watering, as he described one of the most affecting moments in his life. The wall — or rather, the stub of what was left — was but the width of…

When Life Doesn’t Go as Planned

There is something amazingly beautiful — and real — about when life doesn’t go our way. I was sitting my the end of my PSDM (Problem Solving and Decision Making) class this afternoon as my professor wrapped up the course by telling us his own life story. The theme was clear: his life had not…

A Real World and a Real God

“He seemed to live in such a real world and to have such a real, great God.” Such was Maria Dyer’s observation upon meeting her would-be husband, the great pioneer missionary to China, Hudson Taylor. I haven’t been able to shake off those words. They strike deeply into the heart of the theme written across…

Julianna’s 2019 Top Books

Hi friends! I thought I’d share some of the most impactful books I’ve read this year in this quick video. Do you have favorite books from this last year? Comment below to share! I’d love recommendations for my 2020 reading list! -Julianna

The Discipline of Looking Back

With Christmas behind us and the year almost gone, I love to step aside from the busyness of life to stop and ponder. It still seems like yesterday that I was making goals and asking the Lord for specific requests for 2019. Now, the year is almost over, and I sense the need to stop…

Is Personality Testing Helpful?

“You’re a three as well?” “You’re the only five I’ve ever met in my life!” “I can’t believe you both are eights and are dating!” An excited string of comments lit up the room when a member of the campus discipleship team mentioned the enneagram. I could only look around and chuckle — incredulously —…

Straddling Cultures

“You were homeschooled too?” I had a joined a couple of our discipleship group leader girls in the cafeteria over lunch. It was as if a spark went off. Suddenly, we could share about our experiences taking co-op classes and laugh about fifteen-passenger vans (especially the ones with at least ten mini-people bumper stickers on…

To Be Clean

Growing up, my dad would periodically announce garage cleaning days. Whatever plans we had for the day were dropped, and all four of us siblings would troop out to the garage to start tackling the piles of bikes, sports equipment, and car parts that would inevitably collect. Toward the end of the day, one of us…