“When In Doubt, Choose Change” -Lily Leung

Back in May, we made a big family decision.

Putting our house on the market seemed really spur of the moment to practically everyone in our lives. And it was, kind of. We wanted to move, but were resigned to stay because sometimes easy wins. We just couldn’t imagine packing up the house we’d lived in for nearly nine years (and our garage that housed Mercy House) on the heels of our trip to Kenya. Our reasons for moving might not have made sense to some, but when our kids asked to attend school in a district with less (monetary and academic) pressure, we knew it was now or never.

Our house sold in 10 days and we did just what we thought we couldn’t. We moved our stuff and transferred to another school district completely jet lagged. It was a short/long summer and it was exhausting and scary.

But I believe this:

“By changing nothing, nothing changes.” -Tony Robbins

And change is hard. Nothing has been perfect, but everything has been good. Better than I dared hope. My son and new Kindergartener love their school. It is a perfect fit, I couldn’t have hand-picked better teachers (thank you, God!) for them. My son gets the extra year of Elementary that we thought he needed (we were right, I love it when that happens) and he gets to be big brother. And someone forgot to tell the Principal he can’t pray in school. Yep, it’s good.

Our 7th grader had a good first week. We quickly learned that junior high is a WHOLE NOTHER THING. (And I uncovered a lot of unresolved middle school angst.) But she really likes her teachers, has made a handful of sweet friends and I picked her up early on Friday and took her shopping because I sensed she needed it (again, on the being right thing, I’m on a roll). It was exactly what we needed. Later she called me up to her room and pulled out a notebook from Youth Group. She told me how their leader asked them to write down the one person that is there for them and understands them. Inside the pages, were the words: My Mom.

I cried.

And then we had chocolate and she tried on clothes for me.

Our house is about 98% unpacked and I’m thinking about just throwing out the other 2%. I want to paint the beige walls, but with our Mercy House building finally up, I’m not going to push my luck with my beyond-exhausted husband. (The roll, it continues).

I love the (very) quiet, mature neighborhood (I do miss my neighbors, but we are being intentional about staying in contact) and we feel very blessed.

“The best thing you can do is the right thing; the next best thing you can do is the wrong thing; the worst thing you can do is nothing.” -Theodore Roosevelt

We spent a lot of years wondering what the “right thing” to do was regarding where we live. Sometimes we do nothing because it’s just the easiest thing to do. But we’ll never know unless we try. This time we got it right.

Don’t Spend Your Life On What Doesn’t Matter

There has never been a time like we live in now.

In my daughter’s public junior high, they don’t use textbooks, students can access the information online and they communicate homework and reminders thru texts. Small children maneuver (and own) Apple products instead of toys. Pinterest has changed the lives of women (who don’t like what their husband is watching on TV) everywhere. It’s becoming rare not to see someone attached to a phone or a device of some kind.

In this technology age, there are more distractions bombarding us then ever before.

I’m not against these advances and enjoy many of them, but the risk of wasting our time and our life on what doesn’t matter grows with every distraction.

We live distracted lives and we allow it because it’s become the norm. And it’s not like it’s sinful, right?

“Sin isn’t only doing bad things. It’s turning good things, into ultimate things.” -Jason Johnson

The risk is turning something good into our main focus, which in the end is bad.

And when our focus becomes stuff or devices that help us organize, acquire, manipulate, our stuff, we make them our idol. Idolatry is spending your life on what doesn’t matter.

God shows us mercy by allowing things to disappoint us, it’s there in the letdown where we discover the power our stuff has over us.

Focusing on things that don’t matter will always lead to disappointment. Whether it’s obsessively decorating our house (I’ve been there) or shopping and shopping and shopping for more, more, more (been there too), in the end, when the buzz is gone, we still want more and the temptation to “redecorate” or “restyle” magnifies.

“Remember you have one life. That’s all. You were made for God. Don’t waste it.” -John Piper

We were made for another world and this one will never truly satisfy. It only brings temporary satisfaction and we hunger for something more sustainable.

It’s when we find the passion of our lives, the passion that exalts Jesus, that’s where we are satisfied.

Free 8×10 Printable: Do Not Waste Your Life

Together for Adoption in Atlanta next weekend!

I’ll be there. Will you?

WFMW: Free Breakfast (for the Locals)

Y’all know my deep and abiding love for sweet tea.

And if you doubt me, oh if you dare doubt, I’ll hyperlink to this.


So, you can imagine my excitement when Chick Fil A emailed me about Free Breakfast Thursdays in the Houston area.

Insert loud MOOOO here.

The nearest Chick Fil A from our old house was about 5 minutes. Now, it’s 96 seconds. I kid you not. It’s God’s will, I tell you.

So, here’s the deal: Reserve your choice below, print, and eat.

  • Reservation link:www.chick-fil-aforbreakfast.com
  • Reservation system open: September 3 –14 (closes at 6 pm on 14th or whenever reservations have been filled – limited quantities available)
  • Reservations available: September 10-15, 2012 / 6:30 am – 10:30 am at participating greater Houston area Chick-fil-A locations
  • Featured breakfast products (10): CFA Chicken Biscuit, Spicy Chicken Biscuit, Sausage Biscuit, Chick-n-Minis (3-count), Chicken, Egg & Cheese Bagel, Bacon, Egg & Cheese Biscuit, Chicken Breakfast Burrito, Sausage Breakfast Burrito, New Oatmeal and Yogurt Parfait
  • Steps required: Sign up for a date/time/entrée on website, print coupon and bring with you the appropriate day and time, receive the item for free.
It’s that simple!
Free food always works for me! Side note: did you know you can Google “kids eat free,” your town, and the day of the week and find restaurants that serve free food? Try it!

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post. But my love of the Christian chicken is true and real. Amen.

Love. {TVP Giveaway}

UPDATE: Comment number 4 and number 255 have been randomly chosen as winners of this giveaway. Congratulations Sukyee and Kelly!

It makes the world go round.

Sometimes my tank runs a little on empty… like when I enter my children’s rooms on their “messy” days. The love is harder to feel. Or when I find their freshly laundered clothes under their bed (deep breath and why?) You know what I mean, mothers out there, right?

But I’m glad love isn’t a feeling. I’m glad I don’t have perform and do good to receive it. I’m glad that God gives us the ability to love no matter what…and when we run out, He’s takes over.

God is love, love is God.

I think that’s pretty cool. Especially on days when I need it the most.

His banner over me is love!

I love The Vintage Pearl, their vision and their support of Mercy House. And today, I’m happy to give away two $50 gift certificates. If you want to feel the love, visit my favorite stamped jewelry store and tell me what you love.

P.S. Who doesn’t love these Vintage Charms? Oh my.

This giveaway ends Thursday.

20 Things No One Tells You About Motherhood

I like to talk about mothering on Labor Day weekend.

That’s why it’s a holiday, right? Because moms work really hard.

Y’all, don’t burst my bubble.

So, I made a list.

  1. Lo, there will be much wiping
  2. The words “Working mother” are the same thing
  3. Your baby really is cuter than other people’s
  4. The bathroom will be your home office
  5. Birthdays don’t age you, kids do
  6. Kids wait until you get on the phone to ask you questions
  7. You will keep a running list of items that won’t flush
  8. You know what to do if you have a tire blowout, it’s the diaper blowouts, that will kill you in the end
  9. Whoever said not to cry over spilled milk, has obviously never pumped their own
  10. You need to carry wet wipes with you for the rest of your life
  11. You will wear your maternity jeans home from the hospital
  12. You wake up one day and realize your mom was right about everything
  13. Your kids will do all the things you said they wouldn’t
  14. When you have a daughter, your accessories will mysteriously disappear
  15. What they say is true: If mama ain’t happy…. no one is
  16. Those “last ten pounds” will keep you warm in the winter
  17. Your kids will hurt your feelings
  18. Your kids will make you feel amazing
  19. The will do both in the same day
  20. You wouldn’t trade your unpaid and overworked job for all the money in the world

What would you add?