Category: Encouragement

Iowa Wave puts the heart in heartland

For 60 seconds on home football game days, 70,000 fans in Iowa City, Iowa, remind us that when it comes to wins and losses that matter, we’re all on the same team. If you don’t know the first thing about a first down, don’t worry. This is not a football story. It’s a human story. Read More

To all the losers, less-thans, and frauds

My family recently tuned in to a show featuring two comedians. One asked the other, “Have you ever said to yourself, ‘I don’t think I can do this?’” “Right up until the curtain opens,” the other comedian said without missing a beat. The other nodded his head, knowingly. “I don’t know why I even picked Read More

Oh, snap. It’s not all about you.

The call sheet on my breakfast bar put the indisputable facts in black and white. Talent — that would be me — was to report hair- and makeup-ready by 7 a.m. It was my big break. My 15 seconds of fame. My first role in a real-live video production. I’d shopped, ironed five outfits, and Read More

How End of School Tyranny Taught Me to Hope

End of school tyranny had us under its thumb. Finals, papers, concerts, and cramming rained down on the Man Cub and writing deadlines had me in their crosshairs, too. “I’m off to the grocery store,” I announced to my then 15-year-old son. He nodded and I breezed out the door. Time was short, my list Read More

Well, It’s About Time

In college, my media law professor exacted a very strict on-time rule. If you weren’t on time, you weren’t present. And if you weren’t present you didn’t get credit for the day’s pop quizzes, exams or homework. We knew who the pushover profs were. And none of them were named Steve Helle. When graduation day Read More

Seriously, God – You’re Not Fair

How we respond to life’s ubiquitous “it’s not fair” moments is a true measure of our maturity. This is why I decided against scratching a grown human being’s eyeballs out this week. Context probably matters right now. “Hi, Mom.” Two words, tone, and time of day told me everything I needed to know. The Man Read More

A Sewer, a Palm Tree, and a Prison Escape

I feel like one of you needs to see beauty come from a hard place today. You need to be reminded that God has a long résumé of making unattractive places fertile and unlikely people fruitful. You need to know He still releases prisoners from darkness, brings beauty from ashes, and causes palm trees to Read More

That Time I Met an Armadillo Half-Naked

It’s a good thing armadillos can’t see because my pants were at my ankles. Five hours earlier, the chilly air and sputtering campfire had enticed me toward the chocolatey liquid warmth of hot cocoa. But as 10 p.m. cups of hot cocoa at campsites do, this one woke me up at 3 a.m. with an Read More

Not Feeling It This Easter? I’ve Got You.

The entirety of the Christian experience hurtles toward this week. And I want to write today to those who feel like you’re missing it. Oh, this Easter Sunday, you’ll put a little extra poof in your hair, wear your Sunday best and smile at everyone you see – because if you’re not smiling on Easter Read More

‘I Can Only Imagine’ Takes Cinematic Seat at Adult Table

I’d like to thank my friends on social media for last weekend’s cinematic reconnaissance. No mascara, check. Tissues, check. Prepare to love Amy Grant more than I already do, check. But Oh. My. Goodness. By the time I saw “I Can Only Imagine” Sunday I was primed, but still unprepared. I paid $9.75 for a Read More

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