Life in Stride Tag

This time of year, it is easy to think about those less fortunate and have fallen on hard times.  There is more focus on food pantries, Angel Trees, and shelters as the temperatures drop and the push for Christmas gifts hits full tilt, which is all good stuff! We definitely should keep these things in mind all year round.  But, I don't want to talk about the Matthew 25 type of "least of these." I'd like to talk about the Luke 2, "least of these." The Shepherds. These guys are the lowly rabble in Biblical culture, yet God chose them, gave them a special Herald Dispatch announcement, if you will, to tell them that His Son was here. His promise was on track for fulfillment.  Why the Shepherd?  I think it's because they would listen, for one. They weren't so caught up in social status or even social etiquette, for that matter, that they'd miss...

"It's the little things."  Have you ever said this?  It's a very ambiguous statement. "It's the little things" can be what drives you crazy (which is more often my intention) or what matters most. I've been reading many stories recently where people are enjoying the little things more in this season. Some attribute it to having more time to take part in them. Others are merely noticing little things more in the reduction of noise.  Thing like:  Eating meals together as a family Enjoying nature for pleasure instead of sport Cooking/Baking Decluttering/Organizing Getting into shape or adopting healthier habits  Ok, well, some of those things aren't as much little things that need appreciating as they are things we don't make time for. But, people are doing more of these things.  There are also things you notice or appreciate because...

Over the years, my husband and I have established a few traditions with our family. Some were cultivated from our favorite childhood traditions, and some were established through new routines with our children. A few of my favorite traditions are opening one gift on Christmas Eve, Friday night family nights with games, movies, popcorn, and fresh-baked chocolate chip cookies, and the birthday boy getting to choose dinner for their special day. Family traditions can be fun, give us something to look forward to, authenticate our experiences, and even bring us back "home" when we feel adrift. But what about religious traditions? Are they good? "Therefore, brothers, stand firm and hold to the traditions you were taught, either by our message or by our letter."   2Thessalonians 2:15 (HCSB) Tradition kept the Thessalonian Church anchored to Truth during a time of persecution and helped them stand firm.  But, be careful that keeping to tradition doesn't cross into an empty ritual....

There is nothing like talking to a friend and hearing her words echo something God is producing in my life and vice verse. It is so validating and confirms that God is at work--not that I should need confirmation, but sometimes, I really do. This past week, I spoke with a friend about some difficult circumstances in her life, specifically her child's health. I told her the verse that is my "Truth I'm Standing On," which is our Walkfm theme right now. She excitedly blurted out, "That's the song I've been praying! I just don't know what to pray anymore, so I've been praying that song." How cool is that!? Something that seemed so casual and unrelated spoke boldly into both our lives at that moment. I had no idea how much that song meant to her and what an encouragement it would be to her that God is listening. What a great reminder...

Today is National Step Family Day!! So if you are a blended family, bonus parent, step-something, this post is especially for you. If you are not in any of these categories, please stay with us as there are universal truths here for you too. Cultivating new relationships is difficult in any scenario, but trying to merge two families takes an extra measure of care. Here to give us some "tried and true" advice are Your Morning Walk's own Magan and Derek. Both Magan and Derek parent in blended families and have graciously allowed me to ask them some questions about their experiences.   1) What is your best advice for families who are ABOUT to unite? Derek: Give grace. It's a learning process for everyone. There will be mistakes and lessons, so grace is much needed. Magan: Remember, this is a HUGE change for everyone. Even if it's a positive change, it can really throw us...

It's back to school time, and if you are like most families right now, you are not at peace. Every decision has a downside, and nothing feels exactly right. So, how can you put your child at ease when you are uneasy yourself? Here are four things you can do to help ease your child’s anxiety (and yours): Pray with Them I know this is a given, but if you’re like me, you need to be reminded that prayer is powerful. I need this reminder daily. I am bad for praying and worrying instead of praying and trusting. Pray with your child each morning and invite them to pray with you. Encourage them to voice their concern to the Lord and then encourage them to tell God something they are thankful for. Following a fear with a praise will leave your child focusing on the positive God provided in their life and will get them...