Recenter your focus on God’s presence with you

Choosing slow is a radical decision in our busy lives but it can recenter our focus on God’s presence
Choosing slow is a radical decision in our busy lives but it can recenter our focus on God’s presence
Photo by Madalyn Cox on Unsplash

My morning routine was interrupted last month when we packed up the kids and the dogs and drove to Joshua Tree. We booked three nights in a charming desert bungalow expertly decorated in bohemian-hipster-chic style. As I walked through the house and marveled at all the decorative touches — geodes, antlers, dream catchers — I noticed that the tiny kitchen was lacking what I consider to be basic necessities: a microwave and a coffee maker.

So instead of waking up to pre-programmed coffee already waiting for me, I would have to use the French press. …


And how to do it

Why Christians need to take theology seriously
Why Christians need to take theology seriously
Photo by Rebecca Lane on Unsplash

Shrink it and pink it!

This has been a common strategy in marketing campaigns geared towards women over the years. It has backfired on a number of occasions, most notably in Bic’s pink and purple pens “for her” which were 70% more expensive than their non-gendered pens. The pink and purple pens elicited many snarky reviews, even eliciting jokes from Ellen Degeneres (“Can you believe this? We’ve been using man pens all this time!”)

“Shrink it and pink it” has been applied to laptops, toolboxes, lighters, guns, and even beer.* …


Even if you’re a busy parent

How busy parents can engage in the spiritual practice of solitude
How busy parents can engage in the spiritual practice of solitude
Photo by Jeremy Bishop on Unsplash

When the moms in our book club read and discussed Where the Crawdads Sing*, I had to laugh because we envied the main character instead of pitied her.

In the story (don’t worry: no spoilers), Kya survives alone in the marshes of North Carolina. Her contact with people is limited, and her only friends are the birds who share her home. We all understand that the human soul is made for connection, and this solitude takes its toll on Kya.

But the moms in our group confessed that there was something about this situation that seemed ideal: no one else…


He still speaks to us today

God still speaks to us today. Here is how we can listen for God’s voice in our lives.
God still speaks to us today. Here is how we can listen for God’s voice in our lives.
Photo by Alphacolor on Unsplash

Sometimes, God talks to us in a burning bush, like he did with Moses, and sometimes he speaks to us through a still, small whisper as he did with Elijah. But how does God speak to us today?

When we think about hearing from God, we might limit His voice to what we find in Scripture. For years as I was growing up, I only turned to the Bible for my quiet time, dutifully reading my two chapters a day. I believed that reading a devotional book wasn’t spiritual enough, so it didn’t count. …


Because Jesus partied too

Celebration is a spiritual practice that helps us draw closer to God
Celebration is a spiritual practice that helps us draw closer to God
Photo by S O C I A L . C U T on Unsplash

March 14th was Pi Day — a day that, in the past, was hardly worth noting. In previous years, either my husband Max or I would say “Oh hey it’s Pi Day. Too bad we don’t have any pie.” and that would be the end of it.

This year, we planned ahead. Max wanted to try his hand at key lime pie, so on the 13th, he set out the ingredients on the kitchen counter and invited our boys to help him. I sat in the comfy living room chair as the boys squeezed limes into a bowl, showing off…


Tools to help you in this lifelong pursuit

Spiritual practices can help us grow in our faith and grow closer to God
Spiritual practices can help us grow in our faith and grow closer to God
Photo by Tim Wildsmith on Unsplash

We claim we want to know God more, we say that we want to grow in our faith, but words are cheap.

We don’t always back our good intentions with action. It’s all too easy to become complacent in our spiritual journeys, pointing to God’s unconditional love for us instead of doing the work to grow in our faith.

“We are not saved by effort, but neither are we saved from it,” Jen Pollock Michel writes in her book Surprised by Paradox.

A lifelong pursuit

When I was little, I remember my Sunday school teacher telling us that it was impossible to know…


And avoid being a know-it-all Christian

A humble and open posture is required when we want to draw closer to God and deepen our faith.
A humble and open posture is required when we want to draw closer to God and deepen our faith.
Photo by Kelli McClintock on Unsplash

A few years ago, an incredible exhibit came to the New Children’s Museum here in San Diego. One part treehouse, one part labyrinth, it’s called The Wonder Sound and it was designed by Wes Bruce.

When my boys and I first stumbled upon it, my eyes widened in delight. The structure is full of whimsy, with 18,000 hand-cut wood shapes and poetry adorning the walls. My boys ran in, eager to explore all the ropes, rooms, and nooks. There was so much to discover, we always found something new on subsequent visits.

One day, another mom at the museum asked…


Your mission field starts with the person sitting right next to you

We can serve God in little ways or in big ways, right here at home or across the world. Our mission field starts with our neighbor
We can serve God in little ways or in big ways, right here at home or across the world. Our mission field starts with our neighbor
Photo by CHUTTERSNAP on Unsplash

Living in southern California, I never thought I’d speak French again, until one Sunday morning when our church pews were especially crowded and I found myself dusting off my second language like an old pair of boots.

My parents moved our family from California to France for full-time missions work when I was seven. After language school, they partnered with local pastors and churches to grow disciples and breathe new life into dying congregations. Over the next dozen years, I saw with my own eyes what God could do when willing people used their gifts for His glory.

It’s all fair game

It was…


We find what we’re looking for

How to see God in the everyday. We find what we are looking for.
How to see God in the everyday. We find what we are looking for.
Photo by Edi Libedinsky on Unsplash

I sit down in the early morning hours to get some work done, but I am interrupted by this nagging thought: our dog Barney doesn’t like to poop in the rain. I watch the sprinkles come down and worry that he didn’t do his business while he was outside. I write a sentence, then leave the room to go check on Barney, scanning the carpet for a pile of dog poo.

I see him perched on top of the couch, his favorite snoozing spot, and I think: “Hmm. Seems innocent, but I don’t trust it.” Then I make a more…


The myths, the obstacles, and the good news

The myths and obstacles to self-care when you’re a busy mom. Learn to manage your time well!
The myths and obstacles to self-care when you’re a busy mom. Learn to manage your time well!
Photo by Anthony Tran on Unsplash

There’s a dangerous myth in Christian culture that can effect our health and well-being. Maybe you’ve seen it floating around in one of its many disguises, but it boils down to this:

Self-care is selfish.

Moms are especially prone to believing this lie. We are supposed to be masters at setting aside our own needs to care for the needs of our children. We give our time and energy to those we love, day in and day out. But the reality is that we can empty ourselves — no one is designed to be an endless wellspring of energy.

Sarah K. Butterfield

Writer, speaker, and ministry leader. Always seeking to empower others at http://sarahkbutterfield.com

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