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Tithing for a Party?!

Tithing for a Party?!

Did you know that part of God’s plan for our financial giving includes setting aside money to build joy in our families and communities?   An unexpected command A few years ago, I discovered an astonishing Bible passage that radically changed the way I think about tithing. And now I find that same passage alsoRead more

Remaining Relational with Flattened Flapjacks

Remaining Relational with Flattened Flapjacks

Last night my family enjoyed our weekly tradition of breakfast for dinner. As my boys were devouring their pancakes, I remembered the item I found under the living room rug last week. Pancakes. Yes, that’s correct. Pancakes! A few weeks ago my sons thought it would be funny to sneak a few pancakes and hide themRead more

When Brotherly Love Heads South

When Brotherly Love Heads South

I just walked out of the shower this morning when I heard my son sobbing in his room. I was surprised by this sound so I quickly ran into his room and scooped him in my arms. I asked, “Andrew, tell me what happened!” Between sobs and slobber, Andrew managed to utter, “Matthew says heRead more

Subtle Narcissism – Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing

Subtle Narcissism – Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing

In one of my Joy Groups, we are doing an in-depth study about narcissism and how to deal with it both in ourselves and with others.  We are learning that there are different ‘’types’’ and different “degrees” of narcissism. Most of us have no problem recognizing the blatant, harsh, self-justifying, defensive kind.  There’s no questionRead more

How to Return to Joy

How to Return to Joy

This year my family had a lot going on for Mother’s Day. It was busy. In fact, it was so busy that it did not work for us to celebrate Mother’s Day like we usually would – on the day, together as a family. We decided to reschedule my Mother’s Day celebration to another timeRead more

Neighborhood Joy Starters Part 2

Neighborhood Joy Starters Part 2

Our neighbor’s new boyfriend moved in quietly. Let’s call him, “Brian.” Brian works in construction, and so his schedule and mine are a bit different. I didn’t get a chance to meet him for awhile. Then I finally made his acquaintance.  In my prior blog, I didn’t mention that our neighbor has tattoos from neckRead more

Neighborhood Joy Starters

Neighborhood Joy Starters

One of the foundations of Life Model Works is for Christians to be joy starters. This is a great opportunity to “love your neighbor,” beginning with your closest neighbors, those you live with. Being glad to be with each other is an opportunity for families to act on every day. Then, as you expand out,Read more

I Missed My Son’s Stop Sign

I Missed My Son’s Stop Sign

Recognizing overwhelm signals (Skill 9) and staying connected during intense emotions without going over the top, known as interactive quieting (Skill 15), are two key skills we need to sustain healthy relationships. In an ideal world, we develop these skills early in life as parents, family members, teachers, coaches, etc. use these crucial skills toRead more

Why Shame is Good for Us

Why Shame is Good for Us

You ought to be ashamed of yourself! You ought to be ashamed of yourself! I’m serious. It’s good for you. In the right way at the right time, shame is valuable and necessary. It’s true that in the wrong way at the wrong time, shame is toxic. We’re used to hearing about toxic shame. InRead more

My Mad Mommy Moment

My Mad Mommy Moment

The other day Andrew was not doing what I asked him to do. He was repeatedly getting distracted from his task. I felt my frustration intensify with each reminder. By the fourth reminder I yelled, “Andrew – DO IT NOW!” As soon as the words flew out of my mouth I observed his little faceRead more

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