Reaching, Welcoming and My Hurting Heart

This week our church held a “Reaching and Welcoming” meeting for our members. It was a big think-tank to talk about how to reach more people in our communities with the Gospel and welcome them into our church. We sat in circles with our “Small Groups” (groups that meet weekly in homes to disciple and encourage one another) and let me tell you, there were so many good ideas!!

I was excited and encouraged…until I left the meeting. Then I started feel overwhelmed at the thought of all the people in our community (and WORLD!) that don’t know Jesus. I want to shout off the roof tops what Christ has done, that He loves each person and offers forgiveness of sins, reconciliation with God, eternal life, FULL, abundant life that starts NOW, that He gives freedom to those battling addiction, hope for marriages, wisdom in parenting. At the meeting we talked about how to meet the physical and spiritual needs of the people around us. And I want to do All. The. Things. I want to help every hurting person find joy and hope, feed every hungry person, encourage every overwhelmed mom, cheer on every struggling child, remind each teenage girl that she is beautiful, just as she is and tell each teenage boy masculinity and gentleness can go hand in hand. And these are just the things I want to do in my own community.

I want to go to the uttermost parts of the world and reach people for Jesus. I want to stop human trafficking, save every abused and unwanted child and bring them into my home; I want to stop genocide. But I’m just one person, disabled by chronic pain at that, trying to support my pastor husband and raise my wild and amazing little boys. How do I know what to do and when to do it? I can’t do all the things. I can’t even do most of them. I know I can do some of them, but it just doesn’t seem like enough. My heart is overwhelmed, with such sadness and honestly a bit of panic (oh, hello again, anxiety).

I’m sure the answer is something like “Just do what you can and let God do the rest”, but I feel such a heavy responsibility to be God’s hands and feet, and I think that’s a good thing. I’m a follower of Jesus and I need to act like it. Jesus loved people and healed them and He was moved with compassion when He saw their brokenness. I feel like we are all so busy with our lives, taking care of our homes and children and making good plans for meals parties and vacations, and even which load of laundry to do next; and those are all good things! But there are starving people in the world and we have so much. There’s got to be a balance… I just don’t know what that is.

The sadness I’ve been feeling has been really hard on me this week, and my depression has been a bit (a ton, actually) worse than usual. I’m working through it, but man, it’s been really tough. The verse that I’ve been reminded of over and over again in my mind (I’m sure from the Holy Spirit) is

“From the end of the earth I will cry to You, When my heart is overwhelmed; Lead me to the rock that is higher than I.” (Psalms 61:2)

And as I’ve laid there crying, this has been my prayer.

I know this post should end with a neat and tidy answer to my conundrum, wrapped in a pretty bow, but that is just not the case. I’m still at a loss, but I’m choosing to trust this Bible verse in James.

“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given to him.” (James 1:5)

I don’t know the answer to what and when and where I’m supposed to do, but I’m trusting that the Lord does know, and He will lead me, and comfort my hurting heart as I seek His wisdom.

Levitsky Summer 2018- Dinosaur Week!

We decided to kick off summer with Dinosaur Week! I had a great time searching the internet for crafts and projects we could do and boy, the internet did not disappoint! I can’t remember where I found all the ideas, so I won’t link to them, but I didn’t think them up on my own. I don’t have the time or brain power!

I started the day off wearing a big onsie dinosaur costume Mike’s mom had picked up last year at the thrift store. The boys got a kick out of it.

I taught the boys about herbivores, carnivores and omnivores and we talked about what our favorite dinosaurs were and why. I printed out some addition and subtraction work sheets for Samuel and added some dinosaur clip art to them- instant Dino math!

For Simeon, we worked on tracing different line shapes to prepare for writing letters. I grabbed some clip art off the internet and pasted it into a google doc, then made dotted lines connecting dinosaur to dinosaur or dinosaur to habitat. Simeon liked getting one dinosaur to the other in order to eat it. We also started learning the letter D.

We did lots of coloring too!

Samuel started tracing some cursive letters.

One of the boys’ favorite things we did was playing a game with this free printable cube! We took turns rolling it and then I made the boys run down to the end of the hall acting out what the cube said.

The thing I had most fun doing was making Salt Dough Dinosaur Bones. I made a double batch of my usual recipe and went to work making bones for the boys to excavate the next day in our sand box.

Easy Salt Dough

2 cups flour

1 cup salt

3/4-1 cup warm water

Mix flour and salt in a big bowl. Add 3/4 cup of water and mix until it becomes the consistency of play dough. Add more water if it feels dry or add flour until it is no longer sticky. Knead for a couple minutes.

I baked them in the oven at 200 degrees F for about 4 hours. This is the picture I used to base my shapes off of. I was so impressed by my dino skull that I didn’t realize I made it backwards. I told the boys our dino broke his neck as he died. 😂 Simeon bought it but Samuel rolled his eyes.

As the boys put the Stegosaurus together looking at the sample picture, I had them watch a short documentary on Youtube about the Stegosaurus. After, that was done, I told Samuel to use the bones to make up his own dinosaur (below). He had to tell me what it ate and where it lived and how it defended itself. I think he enjoyed it!

We also made Hatching Dinosaur Eggs. They were super easy too. I like easy projects! I didn’t even measure out the two ingredients. All you have to do is put some baking soda in a bowl (maybe 3/4 cup) and add some water until it becomes a paste. Put some in your hand and then smush a tiny plastic dinosaur figure into it and add more paste and shape it into an egg. Let it sit outside overnight to dry out. When it’s time for them to hatch, fill up a spray bottle with vinegar and spray away!

The last project we did for Dinosaur weeks was Dinosaur Print Fossil Cookies. I used my mom’s super secret sugar cookie dough recipe (I could tell you, but I’d have to kill you) but any any sugar cookie dough would work- even the super quick Pillsbury bag or even a pre-made refrigerated tube . Roll the dough in 1.5 inch balls, roll in a mixture of cinnamon and sugar, arrange them on a cookie sheet about 2 inches apart, pat them down a bit and then use some plastic dinosaurs to stomp on the cookies to make foot prints. Only press the dinosaur feet down about halfway through the cookie. The cinnamon sugar is important so you can see the foot prints. Bake for 8-10 minutes at 350 degrees F. Remove the cookies to cool on a cooling rack.

So, there you have it, our first week of Summer 2018. I think Dinosaur Week was a huge success!

May The Lord Give You Increase


I came across these Bible verses a couple days ago and I wrote them on the white board in the kitchen. This is where I spend a ton of time during the day, so the white board has our dinner menu for the week, our grocery list and Scripture or song lyrics that minister to me.

I love this promise from the Psalms.

“He will bless those who fear the LORD,
Both small and great.
May the LORD give you increase more and more,
You and your children.”
– Psalm 115:13-14
I like the blessing part. Who wouldn’t? But the fear of the Lord part is a little harder for me because I’m human and I’m prideful. I want to do things and have things my way. I am thankful for a God who is patient, long-suffering and oh so loving toward me!
I’ve been on a journey of healthy eating for the last 6 months. I have learned a dependence on God that I had not ever known before. The Lord revealed to me that I was addicted to sugar, using it like a drug when things became stressful or sad or overwhelming or anger-inducing or… you get the idea. I also used it to celebrate happy occasions, making it through the day with my boys, when I lost a little weight. Yes, seriously, when I lost weight! I can be so foolish! Now there isn’t anything wrong with eating food at a celebration, but when the food becomes the center of my attention, then it becomes and problem…and it became a big problem. I was convicted and I really felt it impressed upon my heart that the Lord was calling me to repent, turn away from my idol of food fixation, and turn to Him. This is where I started learning the fear of the Lord. Now, this isn’t a fear where I feel scared of God. I am a Christ- follower and have been forgiven of my sins because of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross. I am counted righteous because His righteousness is imputed to me. I don’t need to fear punishment. The fear of the Lord I’m talking about here is reverence, respect, awe.
First Samuel 12:24 says, “Only fear the LORD, and serve Him in truth with all your heart; for consider what great things He has done for you.”
The Lord has done so many great things for me. Even His conviction of my heart when I was in the midst of the sin of idolatry and food fixation was a great blessing! He drew me to Himself and helps me moment by moment as I seek to follow Him.
Psalm 115:14 is the verse I’ve been meditating on today. It says “May the Lord give you increase more and more, you and your children.” As I fear the Lord and serve Him in truth with all my heart (1 Sam. 12:24 above), the Lord will give me increase – and my children! I was thinking of the many blessings I would love to be increased for me and my children. As I walk this path of daily relying on God to help me choose good, healthy foods, the blessings I want to increase are a healthier body, a greater reliance on Him and a closer, deeper relationship with Him. And as I walk with Him and fear Him, these blessings are poured out on my children too! How awesome is that!
My children get to see their mom pouring her heart out to God asking for help to make healthy food choices (Do you ever pray out loud in front of your children about the things you are struggling with?? You should! It’s so good for them to see you relying on the Lord!) . Because of this I actually make healthier choices and cook nutritious meals for my family. My children get the blessing of good, healthy, yummy food to fill their bellies and make them grow stronger. They get the blessing of seeing their mom fully satisfied in Christ, not striving for satisfaction in food, or anything else for that matter. They get the blessing of learning healthy habits, not only physical habits, but spiritual ones too! My son loves to read the Bible verses on my white board each week and we get to talk about what they mean and how we can apply them in our family. See, blessing upon blessing, increasing over and over again!
I know that serving the Lord with your whole heart is hard. But it’s so worth it, friends! Blessings upon blessings will be poured out on you – and your children too! What mama doesn’t want that!?


When things are good, it’s easy to be transparent. But not so much when things are hard. I wonder if people will think I am complaining, or not trusting God. I worry that I will bug people and I start to feel insecure.

But writing out my thoughts and feelings and sharing them with people is therapeutic, so here goes.

I am struggling. Winter brings cold weather and cold weather brings me an incredible amount of pain. I look mostly ok at church, and that’s because church thankfully happens at the best, least painful part of my day. But mornings and evenings are a different story.

When I wake up, the pain hits me like a bus. It hurts when I move, but it also hurts when I don’t move. I have a series of stretches I do in bed so I’m able to get out of bed and walk to the bathroom, then to the coffee maker (so important! 🙂), then to the microwave to heat up a rice bag and finally to the couch to sit with the heat until my body slowly loosens up). But this is rarely a smooth process when you add two young boys to the mix. Simeon needs helping using the bathroom, Samuel is still learning how to get his own breakfast, I have to play referee when the boys intentionally irritate one another. My body longs to sleep because that’s the only time I don’t feel the pain. I get snappy and weepy and sometimes I feel panic because I can’t get rid of the pain.

Nights are even worse. It’s hard for me to even explain how hard the nights are. I feel tormented by the pain. Mike has to help me to bed some nights. I don’t have the strength or energy to talk or even open my eyes sometimes in the evenings. My mind is so tired from keeping it together all day. My body is exhausted from normal life stuff.

I feel defeated and alone because not many young mamas can relate. Friends and family try to understand and I am so thankful, but I do feel alone.

The pain affects me in so many ways.

Physically, I’m having a harder and harder time walking, my legs and knees ache, then the nerve pain feels like I’m being electrocuted or stabbed. There is sharp pain in my lower back any time I bend. The fatigue has been coming more and more quickly lately.

Mentally and emotionally I am exhausted. Pain does that to you. I feel “less than” so much if the time because I see what I miss out on- being active with my family, being able to have easy conversation because I forget words and can’t get my thoughts out of my brain and into my mouth. I know the pain and brain fog affect how I parent and I grieve the mama I would be without the pain.

Spiritually, I struggle in secret. I love the Lord with all my heart, but the pain and God’s choice not to heal me is like the elephant in the room. I pretend it isn’t there but when I stop and think about it, I question God’s goodness. I feel awful just typing that. It’s like my heart and mind can’t comprehend how a good God can love me, see my pain, hear my cries and choose not to heal me. I have to daily choose what I know is truth instead of what I feel- abandoned and unloved. That really messes with a person whose faith is the most important thing in her life.

See how transparency is so difficult for me?? I don’t want people to think less of me, love me less.

But, I know I can’t possibly be the only person feeling this way, right? We all go through stuff that makes us question, makes us struggle. We all want people to think the best of us. But we can never cultivate real, deep relationships without transparency. We all want to be known, really known. But it’s scary to be honest and show the unpresentable parts of myself. But if I don’t ever show the broken, hurting parts of me, I will always feel alone. And I don’t want that.

One of the purposes of the church is to encourage one another(1 Thes. 5:11), comfort one another (2 Cor. 1:4), help bear one another’s burdens (Gal. 6:2), so I’m typing this now with boldness, trusting that God will take my fumbling words and transparency to encourage others to reach out when they struggle (send me a message ANY time and I will pray with you and for you!!!), to be more compassionate because we never really know what’s going on in someone’s life and remind people to pray for one another.

21 Day Fix(ish) Turkey Chili

I am finding that the easiest way for me to stay on plan is to plan plan plan! And then prep a ton of food for the week. If I can just heat up something out of the freezer or fridge, I can stay on plan when my day is crazy and I don’t have time to cook a full dinner. I made this chili tonight and it was yummy! So. Much. Food. Honestly, I ate about two thirds of a portion (2 full cups! Plus my yellow portion (1/3 cup) of shredded cheese. Next time will just use half of my cheese portion) and the last one third is waiting for me on the kitchen table. I’ll go back to it after I’m done here.  I’m still not used to eating so much food at one time.

I’m calling this recipe 21 Day Fix(ish) Turkey Chili because honestly, I’m not an expert at this and I’m not super duper strict when it comes to healthy foods in the containers. I don’t have any idea what chicken broth counts as and I know tomato sauce is supposed to be counted as purple (fruit), but I count it as green (veggies). I know I’m not going to binge on tomato sauce or chicken broth so I’m totally OK with it. I still drink a cup of coffee every day with my normal Coffeemate creamer. I’m a rebel, I know.

So, without further ado, Here is

21 Day Fix(ish) Turkey Chili

1 pound lean turkey
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1 large green bell pepper, diced
1 large red bell pepper, diced
1 large onion,diced
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 cup chicken broth
1 (14oz.) can diced tomatoes (I use petite diced)
1 (8 oz.) can tomato sauce
1 cup drained and rinsed black beans
1 cup frozen corn
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4-1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (depending on how spicy you like it)
Shredded cheddar cheese (optional)

In a large pot, brown and crumble turkey in olive oil. Add diced onions, garlic and bell peppers. Saute until veggies are barely softened.Stir in diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, corn, beans. Stir in the spices.Simmer, covered, for 45 minutes.You can top this with diced onion and or shredded cheese.

You could also make this in the crock pot. I’d do step one, then dump everything into the crock pot and cook it on low all day.




The Power Of A Praying Wife – His Integrity

Merriam Webster defines integrity as “the quality of being honest and fair or the state of being complete or whole.” What wife would not want this for her husband?

In this chapter Stormie defines integrity as

“Not what you appear to be when all eyes are on you. It’s who you are when no one is looking. It’s a level of morality below  which you never fall, no matter what’s happening around you. It’s a high standard of honesty, truthfulness, decency, and honor that is never breached. It’s doing for others the way you would want them to do for you.” (The Power Of A Praying Wife, page 117).

My husband says what he means and means what he says. He doesn’t play games. I really love that about him. As a woman, sometimes I try and read into things that he says to me, but it turns out, he doesn’t have ulterior motives. His yes means yes and his no means no. That is a huge blessing. He doesn’t leave me guessing.

My husband is a teacher and one of his jr. high students told her dad that my husband was her favorite teacher. Her dad asked her why. She said it was because he was fair. If he said that he would give them a failing grade if they did something and they did it, he gave them a failing grade. It didn’t matter who the student was. He doesn’t play favorites.

One thing Stormie writes about it how her husband has taken stands against things he knew were wrong and how much it cost him. Because my husband works in Christian education, I’m sure he doesn’t come up against this as much as men who work in secular jobs. But my husband is very familiar with God’s Word and if God’s word says something is wrong, he will take a stand against it, even if that means people in the Christian community think he’s a weirdo. The jabs and ridicule by people, even Christians sometimes, is worth it because he knows that he’s doing what God wants him to do and that’s enough for him. 

“The Bible says, ‘The righteous man walks in integrity; his children are blessed after him’ (proverbs 20:7). Whether my children fully recognize it or not, they will receive a heritage from their father’s adherence to the principles of high moral integrity. There are blessings they will enjoy because of the kind of man he is. I pray they will pass those on to their children.” (The Power Of A Praying Wife, page 118)

I have already seen the blessings of my husband’s integrity in my son’s life. Lately I have overheard him teaching our son that he needs to be a man of his word. He is only three years old, but I know that every time my husband reminds him, he is planting seeds in my son’s heart that will help him grow into a man of integrity. 

“Integrity happens in the heart. Therefore, being a man of integrity is something your husband must CHOOSE to do on his own. But you can prayerfully help him fight the enemy that seeks to snare him, blind him, and keep him from making that decision. Even when he makes the right choice, there will be a negative reaction to it in the realm of evil. Your prayers can help shield him from anything that causes him to doubt and waver, and give him strength to do what’s right- even when no one’s looking.” (The Power of A Praying Wife, page 119)

As Fit As I Can Be

One year ago in June, I pulled my groin and quad because I worked out with a personal trainer – once- and I obviously pushed my poor body too hard, even though it didn’t feel like it at the time. It was one week after working out with the trainer that I was under Samuel’s highchair cleaning up his tossed dinner when I got up from kneeling and felt something pull in my leg. I could have sworn I audibly heard it tear. It was sickening and Mike got me to a chair and we put ice on it, but the damage was done. It took close to $500, lots of ice, heat and Motrin, physical therapy, an MRI and almost 6 months before I was able to work out again. Lesson learned…. or so I thought….


I have been feeling pretty terrible lately, fibromyalgia-wise. I notice though that when I work out consistently, the pain, anxiety and depression are far less than if I stayed home and did nothing. This week I went to the gym 4 days and either walked on the treadmill or “ran” on the elliptical. I was feeling great! I had more energy, my debilitating pain was now just annoying and tiring.


A few weeks ago, Mike started a fitness challenge group with a workout program called T25 from Beachbody. It’s a workout that you do at home while watching some videos. My girlfriends and I are going on a girls’ getaway in August and have all committed to losing 10 pounds before then. Mike thought it would be fun if we all did this workout program together. We start on Monday so Mike decided to preview it last night. I was excited to see the modified moves and wondered if I would be able to keep up. I started the workout with him, making sure to watch the girl doing all of the low impact modifications. I made it 17 minutes into the 25 minute video. Then my leg and groin started to ache. I immediately stopped and put ice on it. Fifteen minutes passed and I felt like I had injured myself just like last year. I went to bed crying, not because of the pain (I deal with pain all the time, I’m a champ! LOL); it was because of the disappointment and fear I felt.


You see, I want to be fit, like really fit. I LOVE working out. I would workout hard every single day if my body let me. But it doesn’t. I have tried running, yoga, workout videos. The only exercise I can do it walking or the elliptical (some days, if my shoulders will let me. Sometimes I can’t move my arms because of the pain.) The rest leave me in more pain, sometimes pain that lasts months. It’s extremely disappointing.


I’m thankful to be able to walk for exercise. I wasn’t supposed to be walking, period. But there is this desire in me to be more, do more. And my body just says no.


This morning my leg and groin are feeling a little better. I’m going to take it super easy today and maybe even skip the gym this week to let it heal. I know that will cause my fibro pain, anxiety and depression to rise again. It’s a terrible cycle. My heart breaks every time it happens and I feel hopeless. This happened a couple weeks ago. I had a swollen and painful lymph node and wasn’t able to work out. This caused a huge fibromyalgia flare. I was just coming out of it and then this happened. Sigh….


I guess I just needed to vent and write about how I felt. Mike can only say “I’m sorry, Babe” so many times. I hate that he hurts so much when i’m hurting. He knows me better than anyone in the whole world; he knows how disappointed I am. I was telling him last night that I’m so sad that I’ll never be as fit as I want to be. He replied with “But you can be as fit as you can be.”


My goal this week is to focus on that. Do everything I can to be as fit as I can be. Focus on the fact that I can do something; some people are not able to do anything. Some people are able to do it all and still choose to do nothing. If this week all I can do it walk, then I’ll walk. If all I can do it rest and ice, then I will rest and ice. And I’ll do my very best to stay positive.


The Power Of A Praying Wife – His Trials

“Everyone goes through hard times. It’s nothing to be ashamed of. Sometimes our prayers help us to avoid them. Sometimes not. It’s the attitude we have when we go through them that matters the most. If we are fulled with anger and bitterness, or insist on complaining and blaming God, things tend to turn out badly. If we go through them with thankfulness and praise to God, He promises to bring good things despite them. He says to ‘count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience’ (James 1:2,3).” (The Power Of A Praying Wife, Page 111)


If you ask my husband what trials he has gone through, he might mention a couple he’s had in his whole life. This is not because his life has been free from trials, but because he has such a great attitude when hard things come his way that they don’t even register as a blip on the trialometer (yes, I just made that up). He is a very go-with-the-flow kind of guy. He may complain of an inconvenience every once in a while, but not often at all.

A couple weeks ago at work, he started getting a migraine, which he gets kind of frequently, so he went out to his car to get his migraine medicine and as he was leaning into the passenger side to grab the box, a lady side swiped his car and her side mirror hit his driver’s side mirror and knocked the glass to the ground. She did pull over and stop, but didn’t have insurance. After dealing with the mirror and the migraine, he called me and said, “Babe, I’m having a hard day. I’m going to lay down in my classroom until I have to head over to do worship for youth group. Thank God I got into my car on the passenger’s side. She would have killed me if I was on the other side!” That was the extent of his complaining. I would have been a mess! A migraine and getting my car hit would have pushed my into a whineathon (Wow, I’m on a roll today with the made up words!) 

I prayed for my husband and he was able to do worship for youth group and the migraine went away for the most part. His attitude when trials come reminds me to count it all joy. He was so thankful for God’s protection (which I pray for often!) that he really didn’t get upset about the trial.

Now I do realize this was a little trial. We have not had to go through any major trials besides some of my medical problems and chronic pain, but I am sure that his attitude would be the same. I’d like to think that it’s all my prayers for his trials that make that true, but I think it’s just a gift God has given him. 

I think the fact that we have not gone through many big trials is, in part, because I cover my husband in prayer about all of the other things in this book- his work, his finances, his sexuality, his temptation, his mind. Sometimes trials just happen because we live in a fallen world with sinful people, but many times trials come because we bring them on ourselves because of the poor decisions we make or the company we associate with. I pray for my husband to have wisdom in all the areas in his life, especially all the things men tend to struggle with the most, like pride, sexual temptation, self reliance. Keep praying for your husband’s trials, but pray for all the other areas in his life too and you may not need to pray for his trials as much. 


I love what Stormie says about trials-


“Trials can be a purifying fire and a cleansing water. You don’t have to your husband to get burned or drowned; you want him to get refined and renewed.” (The Power Of A Praying Wife, page 114)


We can play a big part in that! Keep praying for, supporting and encouraging your husbands!



The Power Of A Praying Wife -His Protection

“Our husbands are on the battlefield every day. There are dangers everywhere. Only God knows what traps the enemy has laid to bring accidents, diseases, evil , violence, and destruction into our lives. Few places are safe anymore, including your own home. But God has said that even though ‘The wicked watches the righteous, and seeks to slay him, the Lord will not leave him in his hand’ (Psalm 37:23,33). He promises that He will be ‘a shield to those who put their trust in Him’ (Proverbs 30:5). He can even be a shield to someone we pray about because of our faith.” (The Power of A Praying Wife, Page 107)

I pray for my husband’s protection every single day. Now this does not come from my holiness, but from my anxiety. I am constantly afraid that my husband is going to get into a car accident on his way home, or that someone is going to rob him at the bank while he deposits his checks after teaching music lessons at night. My anxiety about losing my husband used to be worse. When we were first married, if he was even 5 minutes late coming home from work my mind would start imagining the worse. By the time my poor husband walked through the door, I would be a mess, usually in tears and mad at him for not calling me to say he was going to be late. Most of the time it was traffic or a taking a phone call when he was sitting in the drive was when he got home that caused the delay. No car accident, no major head trauma, no gun shot wounds. Just life.

It doesn’t happen often, but sometimes the fear of losing him will creep up at night when I’m waiting for him to get home. His schedule can be a little irregular and he could be an hour earlier or later than I expect. He is usually so good to call and let me know what is going on, but sometimes it slips his mind. (I pray for the Lord to remind him to call me too!)

It’s funny that at this very moment, my husband just came into our room where I’m writing and says he’s going for a run to end his workout. It’s almost 9:30 pm. I still get a little anxious when I think about what could happen. But the Lord has been impressing on my heart to trust Him with my husband’s life. My husband also just said, “I’ll only be gone like six minutes. I’m going to leave my phone here.” The look on my face must have changed his mind because he grabbed his phone and smiled at me before he closed the door.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if God protected us from anything that could harm us?! I would never have to keep watching my clock to see when six minutes have passed!

But there are times when God doesn’t protect us from the evil around us. Bad things happen. I love what Stormie writes about this in this chapter.

“But accidents do happen, even to godly people and when they do they are sudden and unexpected. That’s why prayer for your husband’s protection needs to be frequent and ongoing. You never know when it might be needed in the battle field. And if something happens, you’ll have the comfort of knowing you’ve invited God’s presence and power into the midst of it.” (The Power Of A Praying Wife, Page 108)

That last sentence brings me such peace. When I read it I feel God’s peace wash over me and I feel calm. He is ultimately in control of my husbands safety and I have to trust Him. He is worthy of my trust.



Sew Much Rejoicing

Over the past few months I have been busy opening and running my very own Etsy shop! It’s been incredibly fulfilling making rice bags, aprons, burp cloths,  and baby toys. Most nights of the week after I put Samuel down for the night, you can find me at my kitchen table sewing away. It’s very relaxing for me and energizing too! I get such satisfaction when I finish a project. I get even more satisfaction when the item sells in my shop!

I’ve been making rice bags for friends and family for years. I use mine every single day. Heat always feels good on my back, neck and shoulders when i’m in the middle of a flare from my Fibromyalgia. You can find them scattered all around my house. I spend so much time feeling yucky that when I know I can help someone feel better, I jump on it. Rice bags have played such a big part in me ministering to people. It’s kind of silly when I think about it, but rice bags are really important to me and my life and it’s so exciting to be able to share them with people in my Etsy shop.

Right now I have four different kinds of rice bags in my shop. Here is a little preview!


This rice bag is my classic rice bag. It’s the first kind I started making and the kind I use the most for my neck, shoulders and back. There are lots of colors and patterns to choose from.




These little guys are what I call boo boo buddies and Samuel just recently started calling Owie Ice. 🙂 They are great for those inevitable bumps littles get throughout the day. These are used all day long with Samuel. He knows when he falls down he needs to run to the freezer and grab one for his boo boo…. and he gets lots of boo boos!  They are also great to pop in the microwave and use for hand warmers in your jacket pockets. I made Mike some when he was teaching P.E. outside and he had to stand out in the frigid temperature (ok…so it never really gets THAT cold here, but I know Mike appreciated them!) For those of you who live in a place with snow, these would be great to have for your kids’ pockets too when they go out to play!


I am so excited about these nursing rice bags! Probably because my sister just gave birth to my niece and I was able to help with the pain that comes along with nursing. They are the perfect shape and the center circle does not have rice so your extra sensitive areas are protected from the heat or cold. IMG_8500


This last rice bag is my newest project. It’s a little smaller than my original one and would be great to use for your lower back or even menstrual cramps. It’s also the perfect size to use on your head straight from the freezer if you have a headache. I’ve also used it when my sinuses were really stuffed up. The heat was soothing and started getting the snot flowing (TMI??).IMG_8637


The last thing I have in my shop is probably my favorite! Samuel and my niece Callie both wanted to be super heroes and asked if I would make them capes and masks. The kids loved them and Samuel even wants a super hero birthday party, so I’ll be making Mike an adult sized cape and mask in just a couple weeks. 

I also had some baby toys, burp cloths and aprons in my shop, but they didn’t sell as well, so I pulled them. But I can always do custom orders if people want them! Lately I’ve been thinking of adding some cute monogram tote bags and crayon roll-ups. I would love for you to check out my shop, tell me what you think and if you love something, buy if for your self or a friend or family member to make their life easier! I am so blessed to be able to share my shop and my heart with you!

Here is the link to my shop! SewMuchRejoicing  If you wouldn’t mind, after browsing my shop, come back to my blog and comment on this post and tell me what you think- things I can improve on (lighting in my pictures is definitely one of them! I use my island counter in my kitchen and depending on what time of day I take the picture, the shade of my items and counter vary), what things you would like to see, what patterns and colors make you happy! I appreciate any feed back you have for me!

Thanks and I’m praying for blessings on your day!