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Filtering by Category: 1 Corinthians

Dreams of the Young


This morning E was walking around the house, pushing her little grocercy cart, focused on the task at hand. I wasn't sure what she was doing, but she came into the living room and slowly  transfered all the leggos from her grocery cart into her plastic trick-or-treating pumpkin. She was apparently reorganizing. To her, this was a serious matter, something that had to be accomplished. To me, I was amazed by her imagination. She's still so little, which a realitively limited vocabulaly, that I don't yet know much about her dreams, or how her imagination works exactly. But sometimes I'll find her shopping for leggos, singining a silly song, or rocking her baby to sleep, and I'm reminded of what a beautiful little human she is. How, already at the age of two, her imagination is firmly in place. She imitates, reenacts, and imagines things in her own, happy little world.

The power of the imagination is strong, even in her. This is something I definitely want to encourage in her over the years. I want her to suceed in whatever she puts her mind to. I want her to fulfill her deepest dreams.

I watched a commerical the other day on tv from the Dove Self-Esteem Program. You can watch the commerical here. The commerical basically says that young preteen girls often quit the sport they love most, because they don't feel good about the way they look.

When I saw this commercial, it brought back my own insecurities as a kid. I don't know if there's any way to truly tune out the world and its ideals. To be honest, I still get caught up in apparence issues every once in awhile. But I do think it's important to instill good values. It's important to start our children off right, finding their identity in Christ from an early age. While the Dove commerical isn't a Christian one, I appreciate the work they're doing to instill self-esteem in young girls. Because dreams are a beautiful thing, something we should all work toward. God has given each of us such unique gifts, it would be a shame to never persue them.

I love these verses from 1 Corinthians 12:
"For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free—and we were all made to drink of one Spirit. So the body is not one part but many. If the foot should say, 'Because I’m not a hand, I don’t belong to the body,' in spite of this it still belongs to the body" (vs. 13-15, HCSB).

The Apostle Paul wrote these words in 1 Corinthians, and I've always enjoyed their reminder on just how different we all our. We come in all kinds of shapes and sizes. But we're all beautiful created in the image of God. (See Psalm 139, another favorite of mine!).  It really does us little good to compare ourselves, because some of us may be legs, while others are eyes or ears. All parts have very different tasks to complete, but all are essential to the body as a whole.

My prayer is that my daughter recognizes her uniqueness and embraces the dreams God has placed upon her heart.I'm sure she has a beauitful life in front of her. I can't wait to see what will unfold in the coming years! I believe there's alot of truth in the following verse, "Take delight in the LORD, and He will give you your heart’s desires" (Psalm 37:4, HCSB). God knows our inner heart, the things deep inside, and truly wants the best for us. Yes, He sometimes says no to things, because He sees the bigger picture, but He does give us the things our soul truly longs to do. I pray this is true in my daughters life as well.


How do you encourage imagintion in your children? How do you comabat the insecurities of this world, that try to beat those dreams down? How has God realized some of the deepest dreams of your life?

Thankful for...


 "I always thank my God for you because of God’s grace given to you in Christ Jesus, that by Him you were enriched in everything—in all speech and all knowledge"  (1 Corinthians 1: 4-5, HCSB).

I wrote a whole series on Thankfulness last Novemeber. It truly wasn't hard to come up with a long list of things to write about! This year, my pen has been in other areas, but I think it's appropriate to return to the topic of thanksgiving for this week. Last year, we spent Thanksgiving with the hubby overseas. E and I travelled south, to visit the in-laws. It was truly a wonderful time, but I couldn't defintiely tell that a certain person was missing. Still, I found much to be thankful for. Family that has grafted me into their famiy tree. Wonderful food to eat. Cousins for little E to play with. Memories that were still be made. Yes, even in a time of loneliness, there were still things to be thankful for.

As I write tonight, it's bedtime in the Chaney house. I can hear my husband & little girl upstairs, doing the normal bedtime routine. E has been in an "independant" mood lately. She insists on reading stories to herself, while hubby reads another one along side her. It's pretty funny to listen to. As I listen through the monitor, I'm reminded of just what a wonderful father my little girl has! He's so patient with her, so loving, but also, so firm. He definitely reigns in her stubborn tempermant. He truly was created to be her Papa. Such an amazing evolution has taken place. Before she was born my hubby had little expeirence with kiddos. He was always nice to them, he'd just never had to take care of them much. Parenting was truly a crash course in child-rearing (for both of us!). I've seen Him grow and change so much. When E was a baby it was mostly just about her physical needs. Now, it's about loving her, spending time with her, teaching her right from wrong, forming her character into the woman of God she'll one day be. Well done, dear hubby! You're doing an amazing job. I couldn't be more thankful to stand by your side through the process. And so, my thankfulness post of for this Tueseday is about you, and the wondeful father you've become! Thank you for being you!


Temper Tantrums


Sometimes I have the worst time being patient with my daughter. When she screams, throws herself on the floor, and runs around hysterically, I feel like doing the same. I feel like losing control. The anger that I try so hard to contain comes to the surface. My voice raises into a yell like I vowed it never would. Her uncontrollably tantrums truly bring out the worst in me. I honestly haven't found a solution to her temper tantrums. Time outs work to a degree, ignoring them also works, but all solutions are equally frustrating.

There's really no talking with my daughter when she's having a temper tantrum. There's no reasoning with her. She won't listen. Truly, the only thing to do is wait them out, and then try to talk through it when she's finally calm. When it's finally over, she usually crawls up into my lap, asking for love and acceptance once again. There are honestly times when I don't feel like giving her this love. When I'm still angry inside and don't want to take care of her.

But I give it. Hopefully not in a way that condones such behavior, but in a way that displays my unconditional love for her. Because, no matter what she does in this life, she'll always be my little girl. I'll always pray for her, uphold her, encourage her, and push her toward the good in life.

I pray for God's help through this difficult, temper tantrum, stage of life. Sometimes it's truly hard being two! I feel like, as her mommy, that I can't do anything right.

But that's untrue, I can love her, encourage her, and work through the confusing moments in life when she screams.

Hasn't God done the same for each of us? He continues to love and forgive us, even when we're at our most unlovable. He welcomes us into His arms, whenever we reach up toward Him for refuge. He never stops caring, never stops working for our good. He wants what's best for us, and is always encouraging us toward a better way of life, a life without temper tantrums and angry melt-downs.

If He loves me with such an unconditional love, shouldn't I display that to those around me as well?

1 Corinthians 13 describes this love God has for us:

"Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails" (vs. 4-8a, NIV).

This patient love that always perseveres is definitely something I need with my daughter right now. Sometimes it's easy to get caught up in the moment, and forget about the bigger picture. As I write this, I can hear her downstairs with her Papa, singing silly songs and chatting incessantly about this and that. To her, the tantrum of earlier is far in her past. She's moved on in life, happy again, and living in the now. Oh to be two and not carry grudges! When I listen to her, it's easy to remember why I love her so. Sometimes, it takes a moment such as this, when I can step back, think and pray, to get things in perspective again. And to love the way I long to love, unconditionally. I think, in a few minutes, I'll go give my baby a hug :)



 It started when my daughter was an infant. We were home alone, trying to fill the many hours of the day. Mommy-hood was still a brand new concept to me. The hours were long, days and nights had little meaning. I was starving for companionship, to be able to talk to someone who could actually talk back, ha!

And so, I started imagining. I started dreaming up a children's story, a series actually. Although my tiny daughter couldn’t understand, I dreamed up some stories about her and the adventures she'd one day go on. It certainly helped to fill the hours. But I never wrote the ideas down.

Years passed. The tiny thing who needed neck support and ate every two to three hours now runs from sun up to sun down, filling her days with laughter and life and fun. There is even less time to write now than there was when she was brand new. The stories still weren't written. And the dreams were starting to die. I searched on the internet, and found someone who had already written some children's books by the same title. I continued to doubt my own abilities. I stalled. I filled my days with other things, so that I wouldn’t have to think about what I was avoiding.

And then, my husband encouraged me. He helped me set aside time to write, and told me to write my dreams down. He encouraged me to develop that creative bent to my soul. To no longer ignore a part of who God created me to be.

Because God has given each of us specific gifts, gifts that make us individuals and a part of the body of Christ (See 1 Corinthians 12).  These gifts are intentional and not something to be ignored. The Apostle Paul writes that, "God has placed each one of the parts in one body just as He wanted" (12:18, HCSB). Did you catch that? Just as He wanted. Anytime I start to doubt my gifts, my calling, I'm reminded by verses, such as this, how intentional God is. Nothing is by accident. He has created me with gifts and talents for intentional reasons. And so I strive my best to use those gifts. To not be overly fearful of the way He's made me. And to bring Glory to Him in all that I do.

And so, I'm starting to write. I honestly don't know where I will go. If these stories will ever see a printed page. But it's a start. It's a bit of a leap of faith. It's a new beginning.

Will you pray for me, as I navigate new waters? As I try writing in an entirely new way? I'll certainly need it.

And, as always, let me know how I can pray for you. You all maybe part of a digital world, but I care for all of you, and pray for you whenever my "pen" hits a page.

God bless, my friends.




Hello Friends,

Earlier this week, hubby, Little E & I returned from a whirl-wind road trip. We returned to Hubby's hometown for a wedding reception. It took us 24 hours to get there (with some long stops thrown in). Little E did remarkably well. She was antsy at times, but for the most part she just slept or played with her toys in the backseat. I made sure to have snacks on hand, and a bin full of different things to keep her attention.

It hurts my heart just thinking about the distance between our home and our family. Taking a drive like this only makes the miles that much clearer. We truly live half a country away.

In my dreams our entire family lives in the same town, where we can visit, swap recipes and meet up for Sunday dinner. I think it pains our family that Little E clearly doesn't know them, she has to be reintroduced on each visit. I know that, as she gets older, she will remember her grandparents, aunts & uncles & cousins, but for now, each reunion is tough.

At the same time, trips home are always special. We cherish every moment, because we really do realize how brief and fleeting those times will be.

In my husband's family you're always offered a cup of coffee when you walk through the door, plans are always last minute, and evenings are spent around the dinning table, playing games, eating yummy foods, and laughing late into the night.

After a week of fun, coming home was a bit hard. The drive felt twice as long as it did there, because we weren't meeting anyone at the end of the road.

Sometimes, I look at pictures of my friends, surrounded by family, and I start to feel jealous, why do they get to live out their every day near family, while mine is so far away? Why do they get to experience milestones together, that we often miss?

But I know that jealously isn't the right response. We all have times of loneliness, all have daily struggles in this imperfect world.

Love is patient, love is kind, it does not envy...

1 Corinthians 13 rings in my ears.

These attributes of love are words I want to live by. Yet, time and again, I fall up short. I start to become impatient. I want things I see around me, instead of being content in the life God has given me. The spiral is so quick that, before I know it, ugly thoughts, thoughts that can't be of God, come rising up.

And so, I speak truths over them.

I remind myself of everything loving and beautiful in my life.

God has truly blessed us in this military life. He's blessed with a home, a family, and people to love, both close and at a distance.

When I focus on the love, there's no more room for the jealousy.





For as far back as I can remember, I've loved Jesus. My parents taught me well. We were at the church when the doors were open, investing ourselves in fellowship and community. There was no question about Jesus being the most important thing in their lives, so He was in mine as well.

There have been significant times in my life where I've taken a deeper step, intentionally saying that Jesus is my best friend, my Savior, my Lord, my everything. Growing up is like that. We accept the faith of our parents, but we have to make it our own as well.

There have been times when I've seen Jesus move. Times when I've felt His presence, felt His peace surrounding me, and felt His direction in my life.

Believing in Him is like breathing to me. Because of Him, I know what true love is (1 Corinthians 13). Because of Him, I have no fear of death, because I know that I'll spend eternity in heaven with Him, not from anything I did, no, I couldn't make it to heaven on my own, but because of the price HE paid by dying on the cross for my sins. I'm not worthy of this love. In my own merit I'm not worthy of salvation.

It's a gift. One I've accepted. One you can as well.

Because of Him, I can face times of deployment. Times when my husband fights far away and I sit in a dark house, with only a baby for company. These times could be the loneliest of my life, if they weren't for God's peace, joy and love. He fills this house, reminding me that I'm never truly alone with Him by my side.

Have you ever felt unloved? Unworthy? Full of grief? Full of loneliness? Accept His free gift of love this Easter. You won't be disappointed.

A Thought on Friendships


Words haven't been coming easily to me lately. I, honestly, don't know why. Perhaps its the toll of a deployment, dragging my shoulders down. Perhaps it's how busy little E and I have been, how tired I am at the end of the day. Or perhaps, it's the state of my heart.
I've been struggling with some awful things lately. Jealously. Resentment. Discord.

I was reminded tonight that those ugly things mentioned above cannot abide next to love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness and self-control. They just can't.

Relationships can't have both. They have to be one or the other.

I was about to say that I wished I was a child again, that relationships were so much easier back then. But even looking back, I can see the ups and downs in friendships. The silly fights. The jealousy. the bickering.

This world seems to be filled with things that divide.

I truly believe the devil would like nothing better than to see us all separated. To see all of us without a friend in the world.

Because together we're powerful.

Together we love each other with the love of Christ.

Together we rejoice in the beautiful moments of this life.

Together we relish the still, peaceful times.

Together we learn what true patience and gentleness are about.

Together we encourage each other to live with self-control.

Friends are great like that. They encourage us to live life to the fullest, and to seek after what's truly important in this life.

It's tempting to focus on the weaknesses. To focus on where people fall up short.

I've been awful guilty of that lately.

But, does that really solve anything?

What about love?

Is love the better answer, at the end of the day?

I think it just might be.

 "And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love" (1 Corinthians 13:13, HCSB).

Love does not keep a record of wrongs


Love does not keep a record of wrongs (1 Corinthians 13:5, HCSB).

Sometimes I think my skin is a little too thin. My heart gets hurt a little to easily. My feelings seem so fragile. Sometimes these hurts are intentional, many other times, they are not. They are slights, overlooks, forgotten dates and times, extended family conflicts.

The choice is then up to me. Do I take all of these experiences personally, shove the people that hurt me out of my life, and hold onto griviences with all I am?

Or do I forgive.

"As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us (Psalm 103:12 HCSB).

If God has removed all of my transgressions, how can I not forgive those around me? Memories can be so painful.

My heart is still hurting today. But I chose to forgive. I chose to love. I chose to look for the good in each sittuation. I chose not to dwell. I chose to live.

Love is... Patient


It's interesting that out of all the attributes Paul could of chosen in 1 Corinthians 13, the first one listed is patience. Perhaps it's because of the ongoing struggle we all have with this word. Patience is hard to come by. We live our lives always waiting for the next thing to occur. High school graduation, moving out of the house, wedding days, the birth of children, the end of  deployments. In an instant gratification kind of world, it's hard to wait for some things to happen in their own time. 

But that's exactly what we must do, wait. I couldn't force my daughter to be born several weeks earlier, she came when she was good and ready. And I can't make this deployment any shorter, the days are still there, looming in front of me on the seemingly never-ending-calendar. 

But what I can do is learn about love. Not physical or self-seeking love, but an everlasting kind of love. The kind of love that is patient at it's core. The kind of love that waits. 

God exhibits this love with each of us on a daily basis. He patiently watches us stumble and fall, loving us through this process called life. His patience doesn't wear thin. He's always there, picking us up and giving us another chance.


When we're anxious about something, it can be horribly hard to be patient. But that's often exactly what we're called to do. We can't live our lives sitting around, waiting for tomorrow to come. Instead, we're called to live today to it's fullest, and let Jesus take care of the tomorrows (see Matthew 6:34).


Do you see more anxiety or patience in your own life? Has anyone exhibited true love to you through their patience? 

Love is...Kind


Little E has started to become possessive about her toys. She doesn’t like to share them with other kiddos. A daunting task has come into my hands, teaching my little one how to be kind to others. She’s still on the young side, but I really think consistency with her now is a good thing.

I’ve noticed something though. Even now, I’m much more likely to scold her and be kind to the other kiddo. I’ll have to be careful about that. Yes, I want her to be kind to others, but I need to make sure that she sees how much I love her as well.

Kindness goes both ways. She’ll have to see kindness in my actions, to reflect it in her own life.

What a challenge.

Yes, it will be dificult, but kindness is definitely something I want displayed in my own Christian walk. Without kindness, there is no love.


What about you? Is there any area of your life that you could improve on the attribute of kindness.

Sacrificial Love


I’ve always thought that I loved my husband sacrificially. I go out of my way to make sure that he comes home to a house filled with love. I’ve followed him across the country to an unknown city, and helped to make a home for us far from the people we loved. I give him the benefit of the doubt, make his meals for him, clean the house, and try to always respond to him with courtesy and respect. I try to live out the words of 1 Corinthians 13, in which Paul describes, real “agape” love. I try to be patient and kind in the way that I respond to him.
Perhaps, in a sense, I have loved him with a sacrificial love. Isn’t that how a military wife has to love?
Just the same, it wasn’t until I had a baby that I understood sacrificial love on a deeper level. My husband has always been relatively easy to love and serve… a baby is far more demanding.
My little one doesn’t care if she’s interrupting my dinner, or my sleep in the middle of the night. She doesn’t care if I miss out on the sermon at church or the movie we rented from Netflix®. If she has a need, she wants it meant immediately. Sometimes her need for love is downright overwhelming. It’s not easy missing out on meals or sleep or sermons or movies. At times I’m downright resentful in fact.
Just the same, God is teaching me such a great lesson on love through this little child. He’s teaching me what true love feels like. Through this child, I’m learning how to not only love her, but to love my husband and those around me with more of a servant heart.
In the coming years, there will be times when my husband is deployed, and I’ll be loving him from far away. I can’t help but think that the lesson I’m learning right now will help me in the days ahead.
God is definitely teaching me some valuable lessons. What has he been teaching you?

Joy In Circumstances?


My joy does not depend on circumstances but on my Savior, Jesus Christ.
Yesterday I sat down in church, emotionally worn and thoroughly distracted by the little baby sleeping beside my chair. I was ready to listen, and boy was there something for me to hear! As soon as our pastor mentioned that his sermon was on joy, I knew that the message was meant for me. I hadn’t been that joyful over the weekend. In fact, I’d been near tears more than once. I was totally consumed with myself, my imperfections, and on everything in general that wasn’t right in my little world. My eyes were turned toward myself, instead of directed up toward my Savior.

“So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:18 NIV).

We all have happy and unhappy times in this life. I often let me emotions rule during these times, and allow them to affect how I ultimately act on a certain day. I’m sure this is a normal way to react. If a cell-phone company messes up my bill, my pants don’t fit, or my daughter is unusually grumpy, I then tend to be in a bad mood for the rest of that day. This bad mood spills out onto the rest of my family and friends as well. That’s a problem to be sure.

But here’s what my pastor reminded me of yesterday: happiness is different then joy. I can be joyful even on days when I’m not exactly happy. Happiness comes from my emotions; joy comes from my Savior, Jesus Christ.

Joy is a gift given to us as Christians. It’s a fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22).
I’ve experienced unexplainable joy during some of the darkest parts of my life. Joy from my Savior is part of what’s carried me through those toughest times, in fact.

And so, today, even though I might not be feeling all that happy, I claim that wonderful gift of joy once again. For I need it in my life today and everyday.

Does your joy depend on your circumstances or your Savior?

“Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-17 NIV).

A Weak but Willing Vessel


I’ve been feeling less than worthy lately. I compare myself to others and see all the areas in which I drastically fall short.

Sometimes I wonder why I sit here at home, writing, instead of having a job out in the world. “Why has God called me to this?” I ask. “There are so many better candidates.” I look at all the mistakes I make, at the gifts I don’t have, and even at the time that I don’t invest into writing day in and day out. I berate myself for not sticking to the schedule I set up. I wonder what it’s all about. I don’t see the purpose in it all. But God does. While I see the shortcomings, God sees the opportunities to work.

It’s amazing how the words of others can speak to me at times. This morning, encouragement came through the blogs of two special ladies, Lysa Terkeurst and Sarah Markley. Both of these ladies reminded me that God has a specific calling on my life as a writer. He has placed me in this moment in time not as a perfect candidate, but as a willing vessel that He can mold and form into whatever he chooses. He understands my weaknesses and shortcomings, and loves me because of them.

Is that amazing or what? While I hate my shortcomings, God doesn’t. He sees them as part of His perfect creation.

And the same is true for you as well. God created you intentionally, with a purpose. Even if you don’t understand that purpose, God does.

So embrace those imperfections today, and be ready for God to move in your life. A life surrendered is the best place to be.

“But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him” (1 Corinthians 1:27-29 NIV).

But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong” (2 Corinthians 12:9-10 NIV).

What area of your life do you feel extremely weak at the moment? Is it in your job? In your home as a military wife or mother? In a new city where you feel all alone? What verses do you turn to during times of trials? What is God trying to teach you at this moment in time?

Lord, thank you for the reminder that you work through the very things that I see as weaknesses. Please help me to depend on you for strength today and everyday.

A Broken Truck and a Lesson on Love


Sorry world. I know I’ve been a bit silent as of late. Perhaps I really haven’t had anything to say, or perhaps I haven’t slowed down long enough to truly hear from God. Hmm. Something to think about.

The military life can be a crazy one. Right now my husband and I have been demoted down to one car, which means I’ll be doing a lot of driving out the Air Force base and back everyday. I’ve certainly need a lot of graciousness and patience when it comes to all of this driving. And it doesn’t look like it will be over soon.

It all started yesterday when my husband called me to tell me that there were some serious issues with his New/Used truck. As he talked to me, I found myself having to make a choice. I could take an “I told you so” attitude or a loving attitude. Thankfully I chose the later. I know I would regret it today if I hadn’t.

I’m learning more and more what it takes to be a supportive wife. As I watched my husband last night at home, I could tell he felt down in the dumps. He needed my hugs instead of my criticism. He was feeling sad about the seemingly bad investment we’d made in this truck, so he didn’t need criticism from me on top of it. Instead he needed a warm smile, and encouraging word, and a prayer partner.

I’m sure we’ll have many other such experiences in our married life. The military and life in general will throw us many curve balls. What will matter is how we react to each situation.

On our wedding day the officiating pastor read us some wonderful words from 1 Corinthians 13. I’ve talked about these words before on this blog. Today, as I write this, I felt the urge to once again read through these words that tell us what true, godly love is like.

As I read these verses, there were a few specific phrases that stuck out to me in particular:

Love is patient: I’ll need to be patient as my husband and I share one vehicle. There will be a lot of give-and-take as we share this car.

Love is kind: While it wasn’t my first original desire, I knew God wanted me to respond to the news about our truck with kindness. That was what my husband needed most of all yesterday.

Love always trusts: Just because my husband made a mistake, doesn’t mean he’s lost my trust when it comes to future monetary decisions. In fact, my respect for him only grows as we learn these lessons of life together.

Love always perseveres: We keep on trying, we keep on growing, and we keep on learning each and every day.

Love never fails: My husband cannot lose my love, even when he makes mistakes. (Not that the truck was fully his fault. Don’t think I’m saying that. It was mine as well). Just as God’s love for us never ends, I chose to love my husband each and every day with a never-ending kind of love. This isn’t easy, and I’m not always sure how it’s done. I just know that I have to rely on God each and every day for this kind of love. I can’t do it on my own.

And so we persevere. We move on, and we learn each and every day what it means to be a military wife. Someone who loves God, loves her country, and loves her family.

How have you shown love to your spouse today?

Christmas Love


With the military comes a good bit of traveling. Last week my husband was out of state, this week the two of us will be traveling half-way across the country to visit with family and friends. The time together will be a good one, but I’m sure it won’t be without it’s drama. What family isn’t? Isn't that part of what makes family get-togethers so precious? Here we are, stuck together in a family for life, forced to love through flaws and shortcomings. I was reminded yesterday in church that it’s not my place to change my family, or to make their lives better, but to just simply love them. What a simple task, but we often make it so overly complicated. We think loving is such a hard thing.

To be honest, I would never have the capacity to love, if it wasn’t for Christ. He is the one who showed us all what true, sacrificial love is all about. He is the one I want to love like.

I’ll be honest, I in no way have this all figured out, but my resolution for Christmas this year is to simply love. If this means not bringing up certain issues or topic, then so be it. I’ll love, and let God do the rest.
“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you” (John 15:12).
“Whoever loves his brother lives in the light, and there is nothing in him to make him stumble” (1 John 2:10).
“There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love” (1 John 4:18).

And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love” (1 Corinthians 13:13).



I’ll admit it here and now, I’m not a fan of TDYs, (temporary duty assignments). They’re often last minute and throw all of our plans out of whack. Just the same, I recognize that they’re just one more way that I have to learn to be more flexible and supportive as a military wife.

It’s tough at times being home alone, managing the household finances, and keeping life rolling while my husband is away. I miss his company, his voice, and even his smelly clothes while he’ away. Just the same, I’ve found reasons to be the thankful for TDYs.

How can I be thankful, you ask? Because with TDYs my husband is more than likely still in the states and will be home in a matter of days or weeks, instead of the long months in a deployment. With TDYs I feel as if my husband is still relatively close by. If I really needed him, I could jump on a plane and be with him in a matter of hours. With TDYs my husband is just on a military business trip, relatively safe and sound and another military institution in the States. When I look at the scope of things, TDYs really aren’t that bad.

For me it’s all about support and flexibility. I can’t change when my husband is leaving or how long he’ll be gone. That’s completely out of my hands. What is up to me is my attitude. I can whine, complain and cry about him leaving. I can be miserable on the phone whenever he calls and make him not want to be home. Or I can be encouraging, kind, and uplifting, telling him time and again how much I miss him and love him. The second would make him want to come home all the quicker, wouldn’t it?

Who knows when my husband will be gone again, for today I chose to be the supporting, loving wife I know I can be, deep inside. I chose to act out the “Love Chapter” in 1 Corinthians 13. I encourage you to pry open your Bible today and read this special chapter. Then leave a comment and let me know what you got out of it. Loving and encouraging our husbands is a full time job, whether they’re next to us or in a completely different country.

You Are My Strength When I Am Weak


I was sick, really sick, like you don’t want the details gross kind of sick. At first, my husband was a wonderful helper, getting me ginger ale from the store, retrieving ice packs from the freezer and putting different DVDs in for me to watch. It was wonderful having him there to take care of me. And then, the inevitable happened, he got sick too.
Now I don’t handle sickness on a good day. Just imagine how I felt now that we were both on our backs on the couch, neither of us feeling like we could help the other at all. It wasn’t fun. Just the same, I knew what I needed to do. I needed to be there for my husband. I needed to get him wet rags and cups of ginger ale and the throw blanket from over in the corner . I need to love with a sacrificial kind of love, the kind of love that would take care of my husband even when I myself was feeling pretty sick. This was the first time loving my husband was truly a sacrifice for me. For the most part loving him is pretty enjoyable. This wasn’t, so I definitely need some help from God.
And so I prayed to God to help us through this day. I prayed to God to help me find the strength to care for my husband and to love him with a truly sacrificial love.
And amazingly I did it. I still wasn’t completely well, but God gave me the strength to do the menial tasks that needed to be accomplished. I cleaned up after us, kept our glasses filled with ginger ale, and with the help of God made it through the rest of our day of sickness.
I don’t think that God made us sick on Sunday. But I do think he had something very important to teach me on that day. He wanted me to truly see what sacrificial love feels like, and what it’s like to depend on Him to get from one moment to the next. This isn’t a lesson I’ll forget very soon.

Here are some verses that were on my heart today. I hope they bless you too:
“He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak” (Isaiah 40:29 NIV)
“Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, "If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of all” (Mark 9:35 NIV).
“Love is patient, love is kind…. it is not self-seeking…. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. (1 Corinthians 13: 4-5,7-8 NIV)

Flexibility and Love


The Love Chapter, in 1 Corinthians 13, holds a special place in my heart. Not too long ago I spoke these words to my husband, as we stood in front of family and friends and pledged our lives to each other. I promised to love him this way, but I often fall short when it comes to this type of Godly love.
My selfish tendencies often overtake my desire to love my husband wholeheartedly. This problem is amplified when it comes to his career in the military. At times, I am anything but loving and supportive. I am anything but flexible.
I tried to look up the word “flexible” in the Bible, but nothing came up. And so, instead, I decided to look harder at 1 Corinthians 13. I found three phrases there that seem to correlate with the trait of flexibility:
These phrases tell us that love: “does not seek it’s own,” “endures all things,” “never fails” (NASB Version).
This is the kind of love I strive to have for myself.
But what do these above phrases mean?
Let’s delve a bit deeper and look at their original meaning the Greek.
Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance is my good friend when it comes to looking up the original meaning of the words. Here’s what I found for each of these phrases:

1 Corinthians 13:5 tells us that Love “Does not seek it’s own.” The Greek word for “does not seek” is zēteo. So this phrase is telling us that Love does not crave, or demand something from someone.
Wow, this is a tough one. I know that I often make demands of my husband that he can’t fulfill because of his job. I want him to call me during the day, come home early just to be with me, and spend the entire weekend going places with me, entertaining my every whim. But this verse seems to be saying that true love doesn’t look like this. It seems to be saying that I shouldn’t demand things from my husband, but should instead focus on doing things for him.
1 Corinthians 13:7 says that Love “endures all things.” I was so excited when I looked up these words. First, the Greek word for “endures” is hypomenō, which means to remain, to bear bravely and calmly. The word used for “all things” is pas which simply means “everything.”
True love remains through everything, good times and bad, times of deployment, and times of safety, times of stress and times of peace. True love goes through these times calmly, knowing that God will provide.
This isn’t easy, I’ll admit. At times, I am anything but calm. I stress, I worry, and I make like more difficult overall. God is slowly working on me when it comes to this sort of love. I know that I need to be flexible and love my husband through the tough times.
1 Corinthians 13:8 says that love “never fails.” The Greek word for “never” is oudepote which simply means never. The Greek word for “fails” is piptō which means to perish, i.e. come to an end, disappear, cease. In other words “never fails” means to never come to an end.
True love never ends. It always perseveres, through good times and bad. Our society today seems to believe that people fall in and out of love. God’s word tells us that agape love never ceases to exist.
My paraphrased version of theses three love above attributes is this:
Love does not crave or demand something from someone. It remains through everything. Love never comes to an end.
What does this mean to me? It means that I will need God’s help immensely in order to love my husband this way. I can’t do it on my own. If I tried, I would fail. But instead, I depend on God to see me through each day. I ask him to help me love my spouse, to help me remain constant through the touch times, and to put his needs before my own.
As I remain through those tough times, I ask God for flexibility. I ask him to give me a heart that can support my husband and whatever changes may come up in our day-to-day life. I don’t hold onto my own plans and goals too much, but instead, ask God to help me follow wherever my husband may lead.