Speaking the Truth with Transparency, Humor and Love
Welcome. May all who enter as guests leave as friends.
Kaylynn Dawn, "The dawn of our joy"
February 21, 2011
Kelly Valerie, Puts the "K" in "Krazy"
June 25, 2012
Trinity Grace, Every inch the 2-year-old
October 16, 2014
I was a youth director in my past life. One morning, I leaned back in my chair, stared at my to-do list and realized this: Christ was no longer my boss.
The teens, parents, pastor, congregation, my colleagues, even my husband, all had varying ideas of what they believed the ministry should be. Most of them had good intentions.
That day I turned off my phone, closed my door and posted a "Do Not Disturb," sign and committed myself to praying each day.
The Holy Spirit does not compete for our attention. Like Elijah on the mountaintop (1 Kings 19), God is not found in the rock-shattering wind, or the earthquake or the fire.
Sam I Am a Author
I am slowly emerging from an identity crisis. Ninety nine percent of writers have a niche, a genre. This is not a researched statistic. This is my perception.
"What do you do?"
"I'm a writer."
The next question, without fail, is, "what do you write?"
And then I stare at the interrogator like a dumb, large mouth bass.
Because the answer is: Fiction, non-fiction, books, skits, dramas, church curriculum, newsletter articles, and now blogs.
Being asked this question by colleagues plunged me into such inner turmoil that when Mark Weaver, author of A Man Like Zadok,asked me how old I was, my response was, "I don't know."
However, in searching my motivations and writing passions, I have discovered that nearly everything I have written has come from a place of brokenness. And I have met each challenge with the force of God's blessing.
For each book listed below I have included a snapshot of the brokenness that inspired the writing in addition to the back cover hook.
Top Secret: African Gray
As they pursue an international threat, characters also wage spiritual wars, battling God’s role in tragedy and the depth of His forgiveness for the darkest sins.
Written in loving memory of of Private Christopher A. Sission of the 82nd Airborne, killed in action on September 2, 2003 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Keeper of the Keys
Book One of the Ephee series and 2015 NanoWriMo Winner
When Kaylynn's father is killed in an ambush, Kaylynn learns more about herself than she ever could've imagined.
This 2015 National Novel Writer's Month winner is the first of six in my Ephee series. It is my imagination placing all six of my children (both my three heaven-born babies and my three earth-daughters) on adventures in the same world at the same time.
Warrior of Strength
Book 2 of the Ephee series and 2016 NaNoWriMo Winner
Feeling betrayed, Kelly, the warrior princess of Ephee, determines to fight her enemy without her family's aid. Her memories are stolen as a result, which makes her the enemy’s greatest weapon against her own kingdom. Crossing swords with her closest friend, who will be the winner?
Alexandria finds herself unwittingly sandwiched between the royal family of Denmark and their enemies’ vow of assassination and she must fight alongside them while simultaneously battling her feelings for the oldest prince, who is betrothed to someone else.
Clint and I experienced some dark trials within our first couple years of marriage. Though we had a loving community of people around us, in many ways we were alone. Within the grip of God's grace, we fought our way out of the woods together.
Can you sum up your life in ten words?
Every challenge met
with the force of Christ's blessing.
There have been HARD moments in my life--physical and medical setbacks, brokenness, animosity from others, financial stress, heart-breaking loss of loved ones. But through each moment I have felt the hand of Christ, as if he were weaving me through a crowd of people. I have seen miracles that can't be explained and blessings that can't be ignored.
Is my life always unicorns and rainbows? Absolutely not! Today was rather stormy. And you've heard the adage, "the calm before the storm"? Well, several years back I juxtaposed the phrase to say, "there's always a storm before the calm."
In the midst of my own storm--my first and second pregnancies, which both ended in miscarriage--the words symbolized hope.
No one told me that
My hair was up in a poof.
And the part that's matted down—
That's peanut butter, not mousse.
I'm now missing an earring
I remember why I wear them so seldom
Oh, shiny, thinks baby with a handle to yank down on
My mascara is smeared across my cheek, but to be fair
I don't wear it enough to remember it's there.
I was reaching for deodorant when the screaming began
And never whisked it on
Before whooshing away in the sedan.
It's been two days since I showered.
Pits are a little bit smelly.
My lower abs still jiggle like a bowl full of jelly.
Stretch marks and scars climb like vines up my belly
My waistline with time's gone the way
Of black and white tele.
Puke is in fashion as well as applesauce and snot
My shirt is a napkin; I don't buy new tops
I pee when I laugh, so that makes me feel sexy
My hairy legs haven't been shaved in more than a century.
My pants sag down. Sometimes I forget my zipper.
This comes from squeezing into jeans while dancing around little nippers.
Where I once had complete thoughts,
There are now only blanks
My mind declared mutiny and then walked off the plank.
I'm scattered. I'm frazzled, exhausted and stressed.
I am Mom. I am loved. I am a beautiful mess.
The promise lay in the knowledge that all storms end. Life has moments of utter chaos, brokenness, helplessness and fear. There are boat-breaking gales that seem like they will never come to an end.
And then there's Christ, standing in the midst of it all. A force to be reckoned with. The winds and the waves obey Him. The storm subsides. And there in the quiet, I know the blessing of His peace.
Lord, give me storms if it means that I get to be in the boat with Jesus.
Sam I Am a Wife and Mom
Sam I Am a Woman of God
Sam I Am a Bible Geek
There are so many details, people and circumstances in life that demand our attention. Many of them are good. But they're not God. They're not Him.
Elijah recognized God in a whisper. He tugged his cloak over his eyes and hid his face in reverence and fear. Likewise, my sweetest moments with my Savior have been in secret, quiet places. But my life is not quiet.
Wife, pastor's wife (not the same thing), mother of three, speaker, fiction writer, non-fiction writer, sister, daughter, friend, worship leader, youth volunteer, teacher, mentor, small group leader....and there are more roles that I would love to fill if I weren't up to my elbows in dirty diapers.
I recently attended the Christian Writer's Conference in Estes Park and for the first time in a very long time I had a chance to be a student, colleague, collaborator, sidewalk shoveler, get stranger's car unstucker. Laugher. Hiker. And Listener.
The best way to discover who I am is to hear from the One who created me. Here's what I've come up with so far: