When I found myself invited, almost 13 years ago now, by DaySpring to write for their new online community – (in)courage, a home for the hearts of women, I have found a real home with women who are some of my closest friends to this day. Since then, DaySpring has been a true companion with resources looking to to help each person experiences the life-changing love of God. The (un)couraged community hosted thousands of women in a space of uplifting encouragement and honest sharing of God at work. It’s a grace to have DaySpring and my friend, Anna Rendell, at the farmhouse table today…
Taste and see that the Lord is good. How happy is the person who takes refuge in him!
Psalm 34:8 CSB
I looked for kindness— for what is sweet, good for the soul, joyful and light; for the goodness of God in ordinary everyday places.
In the midst of our normal daily lives, it can be hard to remember that possibilities and hope still exist. These days, it seems like the right decision: to be on the lookout for good.
What I discovered is that goodness is everywhere, all around, all the time, in all places.
Last year my little sister got her second baby, and I had my Fourth.
Our children are madly in love with their little brother and their new cousin. We prayed for these babies, waited for them to arrive, celebrated and decorated nativity scenes for them, and now they are walking together.
“In a world that still contains that delicious newborn smell and the sway of a confident toddler’s walk, there’s still some good in it.”
Bring the cuddles, the onesies, the pacifiers and the strewn board books, my sister’s late night texting while we’re both up with babies awake, the sheer sweetness of a new little one.
In a world that still contains that delicious newborn smell and the wobbling of a confident toddler’s walk, there is still good.
My older children have recently returned to school. As I try to clench my fists around the slippery strands of time, it keeps walking. I think of the time we attended each of their kindergarten gathering nights at our elementary school, absolutely giddy to be there.
Stunned by the attention of both parents, the prospect of having their own desk full of pencils and folders, a new teacher, new friends, an entire library to browse, and the promise of riding a yellow school bus. Their joy was immense, and I couldn’t help smiling big and silly at their happiness and hope.
In a world that still contains freshly sharpened pencils and the joy and hope of going to school, there is still good.
In autumn and winter, I make soup. When the temperatures drop, it’s time to get out the stoneware, the Dutch oven and the slow cooker. My knife finds a rhythm for slicing vegetables, my ears love the sizzle of browning meat and my heart leaps as I shake the seasonings in the pot and suddenly the soup is more than a single ingredient all on its own.
Add a fresh loaf of bread, crisp on the outside and spongy on the inside, and maybe a green salad on the side, and a cold fall evening’s dinner is ready. The satisfaction of cooking is a motivation for me, and the joy it gives me to set a table and welcome my family there is palpable.
“In a world that contains tables to gather, a family to break bread with, and meals to prepare, there is always good.”
In a world that contains tables to gather, a family to break bread and meals to prepare, there is still good.
Every day I sit in front of my computer. I type words and create emails, log on social media and schedule a few posts, attend video meetings and work with my team.
I rummage through my pile of laundry, sort through whites and brights, add detergent, and the swish-swash goes in the washer. I suck up dog hair, fallen from our dog who loves to zoom in and dive down our legs. I load the dishwasher, unload the dishwasher and reload it again, full of dishes on which meals and snacks have been served and enjoyed.
I pick up tiny toys, pile books on shelves, and go to the store to buy shampoo and bananas.
I log in with the family text feed, go to sports and group practice, and put books on hold at the library. I collapse in bed at the end of the day, grateful for each item checked off my to-do list and asking for help finishing up the leftovers.
In a world that contains chores and work projects and the joy in it all, there is still good.
“God, who loves us as much as he did on the first day, makes all things work together for good to those who love him.”
God, who loves us as much as he did on day one, makes everything work out for the good of those who love him.
He thinks of us constantly, more than there are grains of sand. He created the warmth of summer, the colors of fall, the glistening snow of winter, and the newness of life in spring. He went to the grave and came back for us, for me and for you.
In a world overflowing with reminders of God’s love, there is still good.
I find them reminders of goodness in all He has done and in the pages of His Word. It’s obvious, full of chained words that show the depth of His love, evident with every page I turn.
“On days when kindness isn’t so evident, I can open this book and still find it.”
On days when kindness isn’t so obvious, I can open this book and find it again. And once my heart is back in line with what He shows me, I see clearly again.
The walk to school. The sermon at the church. Freshly fallen leaves.
The width and depth of the ocean. The heat of the sun.
The crisp pages of a new, blank diary.
A hot latte. A letter from a friend.
A daisy growing out of a sidewalk crack.
Your children, your friends and your family.
A verse of scripture that speaks directly to your heart.
Kindness is not hard to find, especially when on the lookout.
May you taste and see the goodness of the Lord, pages to lived glory in your daily life.
DaySpringthe Christian subsidiary of Hallmark, created the new Exclusive Collectible Bibles thinking about you. It is their hope that throughout this book you will experience God’s life-changing message of love, feel his peaceful presence, and find a deeper connection with your loving Father.
Published with Tyndale House, the DaySpring Signature Collection Bibles integrate great design with New Living’s clear and accurate translation to give you an exceptional Bible reading experience. The NLT will encourage you to delve deeper into God’s heart for you with easy-to-read text that relates to today’s world. Easy to carry and understandable for a variety of ages, this collection comes equipped with the Filament Bible app, which puts devotional, worship, and study materials at your fingertips.