By Virginia Smith
From an aging photograph on the bedside table, a bride and groom smile at one another with eyes full of love. The woman in the nursing home bed bears no resemblance to the bride. Dull, sightless eyes stare toward the ceiling, and sagging skin clings to the bones of her face like winter leaves reluctant to loose their fragile grip on the tree that gave them life.
As I hand a damp cloth to the man seated beside her bed, I detect a similarity to the groom in his wrinkled face. He raises the cloth to her forehead, and from the tenderness in his eyes I know he does not see her as I do. He sees instead every smile she has ever given him, every tear she has shed, every night spent together. He sees her as he knows she has been, and as he hopes she will be again. He sees her with love.
By Rachael Sales
As the mother of eight children, six of which I naturally birthed, I am always interested in hearing the testimonies of the birthing room experience. As an avid supporter and participant of supernatural childbirthing, it never ceases to amaze me how God births life in and through the very creation that He birthed and that He paid the price on Calvary for it to be painless. There is nothing more beautiful (after experiencing new birth in Christ) than watching a child take its first breath on this side of it all. For this reason, I count it a privilege and a joy to gather the stories of wives and mothers, and provide a platform for them to be heard. Amidst the piles of laundry, the late night feedings and the little bumps and bruises, their voices cry out declaring that God is both able and willing to keep. Consider the following snippet of the labor room experience from wife and mother Ashleigh Phillips:
During the birth of our first baby, Morgan, we found out that she was faced the wrong way, and so she wasn’t coming down the canal. She was face up when she should have been face down. We tried every birthing position imaginable to get her to turn over – squatting, hanging on the birthing bar, you name it, but she never turned around. I had gotten to the point that I didn’t care what anybody thought. People were walking in and out of the room, and I just didn’t care. At that point I knew God was there and it was me and Him walking this thing through. It’s amazing when those types of thing happen causing you to become so vulnerable. I believe that we should always be like that – at the point of not caring what anybody thinks.
By Kathi Macias
“What About Bob?” has to be one of the funniest movies I’ve ever seen. I’ve laughed my way through it many times, which is highly unusual for me, as it’s a rare film that holds my interest more than once. I’ve asked myself what it is about that movie that intrigues me—beyond the obvious, which is that it’s a story about an over-the-edge neurotic who carries his goldfish in a water pouch around his neck and endears himself to his therapist’s family through his eccentric but winsome ways, even as he infuriates the therapist himself and eventually drives him over the edge. As humorous as that is, the most memorable part of the movie is a simple two-word phrase: “baby steps.”
When Bob learns his therapist is going on vacation and won’t be able to see him for a while, the poor man is panic-stricken. He informs the doctor that he simply cannot function that long without him, so the therapist advises him not to be overwhelmed by the situation but to approach it with “baby steps.” We then see Bob proceeding through the movie, reminding himself at every juncture: “Baby steps, baby steps, baby steps….”
By Cynthia Ruchti
If asked to name someone who exemplifies true humility, who would, you choose? Let’s say Jesus is off limits, because, frankly, He’s off the charts when it comes to humility. Name a contemporary. Famous or infamous.
Having a hard time? Mother Teresa came to mind, but she’s no longer a contemporary.
Why is humility such a radically obscure concept in today’s world? Why is it so foreign a thought that we struggle to think of a single living example? And how will we ever teach it to our children and grandchildren if we can’t point to someone and say, “See? Like that!”?
By Laurette Willis
Have you ever said this: “I don’t have TIME to exercise”? Some of us have said that more than once! In reality, it’s not about having time to exercise because we all have the same 24 hours each day; we need to MAKE time to exercise if we want to be healthy.
Think of some of the things you already make time to do each day. Some of these things have been part of your daily routine since childhood and have become second nature, such as brushing your teeth, washing your face, or fixing yourself something to eat. There are other things you do on a regular basis which have become habit, yet require a bit more preparation, such as going to church, remembering to acknowledge friends’ birthdays, and shopping for groceries.
Making fitness a part of your regular routine can become a habit—especially if you combine it with something you are already doing, such as prayer, reading the Bible, or worshiping the Lord.