July 11, 2015

That Thing I Do Now - Vol 104

Happy Weekend, y'all!

Featured today are posts by Robin Dance, Sarah Bessey, Glennon Doyle Melton, Renee Robinson, Anne B., Ann Voskamp, a post from right here, and - of course - a video to wrap it all up! 

Happy Reading! (Ya'll know to click on the authors' names below to read the entire post, yes?)

* This one by Robin Dance over at Incourage with A Secret to Marriage for Life...
“At 75, he and his bride still hold hands. At times I’ve seen them look at each other, with grins telling secrets, eyes sizzling. Their son ignored it because — gross — but I thought it was amazing.

Marriage is a hard thing, and untended, it will cool.

I want heat.

Even the most blistering of fires will eventually dwindle to ash if not fed. 

Give me flames.

When I wrote about my father-in-law, apparently I poked a bear. Not a mean grumpy grizzly, but more along the lines of Pooh — not exactly a willy, nilly, silly old bear, but sweet nevertheless. With all manner of deference, he suggested a different title (his, based on a poem he penned 25 years ago, is better) and that I might want to rethink my choice of words in one spot (because I “might present myself better”), so I did.

And then he reminded me of the secret to their 54-year marriage, lest there was any doubt, to make certain I understood.

“People want to know how we’re still so in love, how we have such a good marriage,” he began. And the next thing he said was the kind of thing pulls your attention taut, “Having a good marriage doesn’t have anything to do with trying to have a good marriage.”

He would tell you that since his Damascus Road conversion in 1970, he has believed and lived out his life verse, Matthew 6:33:

“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”
So simple. Not easy. 

* This post by Sarah Bessey with I used to think God wanted a lot from me... 
"Maybe God doesn’t so much want things from us.

Maybe God actually wants things for us.

After all, God imagined us for love and for beauty, for life and for wholeness, for goodness and for mercy. You were made in the image of God. The Holy Spirit stirred over the waters, deep calling to deep.

God yearns like a father, like a mother, for us to be free.

God is Love, yes, and so God wants to lavish friendship and meaning and abundant life upon us, to help us to see this old world like the new world God envisions.

God wants us to be truly human, the way Jesus walked for and with us. Even the wrath of God isn’t something to fear, but something to welcome – that wrath is coming against the very things in us that bring death and destruction.

You, dear one, you’re not being condemned. You’re being rescued.


God doesn’t want much from me: God wants so much for me.

See there? The difference?

Start there. Start with the Love and with the freedom, with the grace and the wisdom, with the abundance, and suddenly those other things are simply an overflow instead of a sacrifice."

* This post from Glennon Doyle Melton with The Storm Before the Calm is a Good Place to Start... 
"The other day I was on the road looking at some pictures you guys posted of me from Sacred Threads, which I will tell you more about later because it is simply one of the most special places I’ve ever been in my whole little big life. I was scrolling through and saw this one picture in which I just looked SKELETAL. Like not my normal smurf-sized self at all, like scary skinny and weak. Sister and I were in a hotel room and I pointed at the picture and said: “Good Lord, this pic is awful. Can I hide it? Is that wrong to do?” And she said: “That’s not a bad picture, actually. That’s just what you look like right now.” “And I said I LOOK LIKE THAT?” And Sister said yes, you do. And I lay on the bed and stared at that picture and this thought crossed my mind: Uh-Oh. There is a crisis in leadership. I’m all jacked up again. I looked at that picture and KNEW, I just KNEW: That’s not right. I’m not right. This is not me. I’m not strong right now. Not."

* This post by Renee Robinson with When God Says You Are What The World Says You’re Not. 
"God created an artist in each of us. Shouldn’t I have seen that His expressions of art in each of us would appear drastically different than another’s? The God who created a world of sunsets that render one speechless. The God who created the seasons with their sharp contrasts of life and death. Had I limited His artistic creations within myself?

We make art with our life. Motherhood is art. Friendship is art. Sisterhood is art. Marriage is art. Acts of compassion and mercy are art.

Art is an expression, sometimes an outpouring of the heart, often a magnificent display of God at work. If we look closely, we can see art everywhere. We can see that we are all the creators of art because we have been created by the Creator of art. He has placed us in His masterpiece to create art daily with our very lives.

Art is a gift that grows with practice and use. God used writing, an art I failed to see hiding in my heart, to show me that He had in fact created art for me to express daily through my life.

While my art doesn’t look like the art anyone else might create, He created me that I might express Him through my life. That is art. Whatever the world says about my art, it doesn’t matter, He looked at His creation and said it is very good.

This post by Anne B. over at Anne B. Good with On Rehab and Rainbows...
“I recently got back from a sabbatical, a four week reprieve from my crazy life where all I did was take care of myself. No job demands, no dinners to make or chauffeuring to do. No emails, no Facebook, no internet. No responsibilities other than to think about what makes me sink and what makes me fly. It was a soul-searching, month long time-out. Okay, whatever. It was rehab.

I realized that I had some addictive behavior that was self-destructive, and I put myself in a program called Life Renewal at Minnesota Adult and Teen Challenge. It was an incredible experience that I will forever be thankful for.

One of the things I experienced there has been at the forefront of my mind as my Facebook feed continues to explode with posts and profile pics with stances for and against the recent decision by the Supreme Court allowing homosexuals to get married.

While there I experienced God's love. Specifically His love for people whose behavior would not be welcomed in some churches. That's what I've been thinking about while scrolling through my Facebook feed lately.

Like I said, I was in rehab. While there I met some pretty wonderful women who had done some pretty sinful things. Heck, I was there because I did some pretty sinful things. 

On the "outside" I would probably never have run into any of these women. I was not familiar with the drug culture and jailhouse slang that many of them spoke fluently. I don't frequent crack houses. I've never had my kids taken away because of my addiction. I've never sold my possessions to get money for my drug. Or sold my body for a chance to get high. I haven't spent a night in jail. I haven't had everything taken away from me.

I have three children by one baby-daddy who I've been married to for 21 years. We were in ministry together from 2000 until 2009, when I had to get a full time job. (He's still in ministry.) I graduated from Wheaton College, Billy Graham's alma mater. I can quote scripture when applicable. I don't swear (much). I am a missionary kid, pastor's kid, ministry wife.

What I am trying to say is that I have a good Christian pedigree. I look and -- for the most part -- act like a good Christian by churchy standards.

I don't usually talk about how churchy I am because I don't think it's really that big a deal. But I have to admit, I sure was aware of my churchyness when I got to rehab! Never really having hung out with meth addicts or felons before, I felt very different at first. But then I felt very the same. What struck me as I got to know them and love them was that I am no different than they are. Not really. Not where it matters.

Churchy people are no different than un-churchy people where it matters: at the foot of the cross.” 

This post by Ann Voskamp over at A Holy Experience with Dear You: a handful of brave things to keep in your pocket for hard days in a hard world...
“Straight off the top, can I just quietly say — no one needs to go around with that parental policing voice in your head — you know?

The parent, superego voice that  lives in your head: You always get things wrong… You are always behind and I can’t believe you didn’t get this right and how did you blow it again?!

Parents aren’t supposed to be the loud police voice in your head — but the gentle pastor at your side.

It’s always there — if you always listen for that quiet, gentle voice of Grace on the inside:

You can do this thing — because you were made to do hard and holy things.

You are always enough — because You have Jesus and He is always enough.

You don’t have to get it perfect — you just have to get back up and keep going.

So maybe yeah, think of all this as a gentle note to tuck in your back pocket —  and that this getting up every day and listening for His Voice, that’s Number One of the handful of brave and beautiful things for your every day:

Number One: Fall in love with the One who is The Way — and the way you’re supposed to go will follow…. as you follow Him.

You’ve got to want to be one with Him — more than you want to be a Someone.

You’ve got to want to serve more than you want to be seen, you’ve got to care more than you want to be comfortable, you’ve got to want to give more than you want to get.

You’ve got to want His approval more than all the other things that will prove to be worthless.You’ve got to want His approval more than all the other things that will prove to be worthless.

Promise yourself you’ll remember this because you will need this most: You can always have as much as God as you want.” 

* This one from right HERE with Making Room for When Art Leaks Out...
"In this season of adjusting to an empty nest and starting a new church, I find myself once again at a loss for words to describe what it is exactly that I do. 

What I do is this: I leak Art.

I leak art.  While artist is still an intimidating title, I have come to find that everything I do is a form of art.  Whether it is pouring out words in person or online; whether it is taking a picture or painting a picture; whether it is creating something artsy on purpose or simply living my life out loud and watching how He makes something beautiful out of it. I leak art. 

Or, as Emily Freeman says it,
"He comes into us, then comes out of us, in a million little ways."

I love that. I love the truth of it and the freedom in it. I love how it is inclusive and intimate... that our creative God creates us in His image and fills us fresh every day.  He fills us and watches how we overflow and leak out wherever we go!"

Lastly, we close This Thing up with a video each week and sometimes it is funny and sometimes it is worship... this time, well in honor of July and Camping season and all that... here is Jim Gaffigan! Enjoy!

Happy Camper Weekend! 


  1. Another great list!! THIS: "Art is an expression, sometimes an outpouring of the heart, often a magnificent display of God at work." LOVE!! :)

    1. Wasn't that post so great? All of them, really! (which is why they are here!) ;)

  2. Wow! I'm humbled to be included in this week's list alongside some pretty awesome women who I respect a whole lot. I'm glad the thoughts of my heart in that post resonated with you enough to include it in your gathering of awesome. xoxo

    1. Anne, oh yes - that post resonated and definitely earned a spot among the Awesomeness around the interwebs last week! Thank you for so bravely sharing your heart!

  3. Great list - can't wait to do some exploring!

    This line from Glennon's post has me thinking: "That’s just what you look like right now." Even though we might we wildly unsatisfied with what we look like, inside and/or out, it doesn't have to be the end of the story. There is hope in the phrase *right now* - for God can work miracles if we give Him our *right now.*


    1. Isn't that such a hope-filled statement? I loved that line too! (And will be repeating it over myself on any given day!) xoxo


Thanks so much for stopping by! I always love to hear your thoughts! Remember to: Speak Life - Be Love - Shine On!

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