journey to joy: part III

from freedom to joy

It was around this time I started going to church. The pastor was doing a series on “Meeting Jesus”. It was the first time I’d heard Jesus described as the way this pastor was describing him — a regular guy with a wicked sense of humor — oh yeah, and who also happened to be God’s son.

I learned that Jesus — because he died on the cross and rose again — covered over and bore away all those judgmental thoughts, selfishness, and other sins that I thought and did on a daily basis. Jesus was my bridge to God — all my sin and guilt rushed in a great river underneath him and away.  {Read more}

journey to joy: part II

from love to redemption

In that churning mess that was me and my life after Pumpkin was born, I felt for the first time, the pure, strong love of God.

A few months prior, right after Pumpkin was born, I had read a book by Michelle Duggar, a Christian mom of 20 kids. I figured anyone who had 20 kids probably had a few good tips for a new mom!

What I hadn’t expected though, was how much joy Michelle had in God’s love for her. While I had a great husband, my “dream” job, a nice apartment, a beautiful baby, even a maid for crying out loud — I didn’t have joy. For months I had been thinking about it… could I, an educated, modern woman, believe in a timeless, unseen entity that for some bizarre reason, LOVED me no matter what I did or didn’t do?  {Read more}

journey to joy: part I

from achieving to flailing

My parents loved me. Growing up, we had hot food on the table every night, a roof over our heads. My sister and I had toys and stuffed animals and went to Disney World. We took walks to the beach every night after dinner and made tents in the living room. My parents worked really, really hard to give us all that and I have many, many good memories from my childhood.

But there are dark memories too. Memories of plates crashing against walls and my sister and I clutching each other and crying in the closet.  {Read more}