I had been invited to lead a session on self-care for a group of ministry leaders, but my host repeatedly referred to it as a session on "soul-care." After all, the "soul" and "self" can both refer to our inner being, and in the Bible the same word may be translated as soul or inner … Continue reading 25 Self-care Ideas for the Soul: for students, ministry leaders, and everyone
Overwhelmed. I've been there too. And not in a good way like being overwhelmed by the beauty of a spring day, or overwhelmed by soaring music, or overwhelmed by love that fills your heart to bursting. It might not be a 9-1-1 emergency -- no need to panic and act quickly, but how to get … Continue reading When You Feel Overwhelmed
At this time last year, I knew that my one word for 2018 would be a phrase prompted by this wonderful painting by Linda Klippenstein: Walking Strong in the Spirit. Walking Strong in the Spirit has been a great focal point for me in the past year: as I've continued to write and celebrated the … Continue reading The Top 10 of 2018 from April Yamasaki
In the time of Jesus, many people would go to the pool of Bethesda in search of healing. One day Jesus met a man there who was unable to walk. He may not have had a life-threatening illness, but it was certainly a life-altering condition, for it had rendered him unable to walk for thirty-eight … Continue reading How to Pray for People Experiencing Life-Threatening Illness
As my conviction grew to complete my pastoral ministry with my congregation, my questions grew too. While I felt more and more certain of the Spirit's leading to shift from my pastoral ministry to focus on my writing, I wasn't at all sure how that would work. As members, would my husband and I continue … Continue reading Who Would Be My People?
"We discovered your blog post that includes a range of prayers related to mental illness. Is there one of these that you would see as particularly appropriate for a hymnal and worship book? If not, would you be open to selecting or writing something else? Although space limits us to one short prayer on this subject, we hope that it can serve as … Continue reading If We Want to Love Well, We Must Love Long
Today I'm excited to introduce three books from three friends that are making an impact on me. Each touches me in a different way: poetry that stirs my heart, mind, and soul; missionary stories that inspire me; and a devotional book that I'm already planning to use next year. The first excerpt is a poem … Continue reading Three Friends, Three Books
last updated August 15, 2019 One summer I introduced a preaching series on Philippians with a sermon I called "How to Pray for the People You Love," because that's what the apostle Paul does in the opening verses of his letter. Some years earlier, Paul had planted this church in the city of Philippi, and … Continue reading How to Pray for the People You Love