The simplicity and the difficulty of the Cross

Happy Easter

I wanted to wish you a happy Easter weekend, spending time with family and friends you love. 

As believers in Christ, we know that Easter is not about the Easter bunny, eggs, Peeps marshmallow candy, or even the cute chocolate bunnies we buy as gifts in colorful baskets for our kids. (Yes, I just bought all our kids and grandkids their gifts!)

We know it’s about the simplicity and the difficulty of the Cross.

Jesus on the cross
Jesus on the cross

We’ve often read the story of Jesus’ birth, death, and resurrection. Sometimes we try to pretty it up with sentimental, lovely Easter cards for loved ones, or even wearing ornate, beautiful cross necklaces around our necks.

But the cross of Jesus Christ was not pretty. It was brutal. It was torture. It was a horrible, excruciating death. 

And He did that for you and me. Because He loves us that much. To give us abundant, forever life.

This Easter, reflect on that kind of God and that kind of love. 

“Our tendency in the midst of suffering is to turn on God. To get angry and bitter and shake our fist at the sky and say, “God, you don’t know what it’s like! You don’t understand! You have no idea what I’m going through. You don’t have a clue how much this hurts.”

The cross is God’s way of taking away all of our accusations, excuses, and arguments.

The cross is God taking on flesh and blood and saying, “Me too.” –Rob Bell


Organizing, cider doughnuts, and Pumpkin Pie candles for fall

autumn leaves quote

The last couple of days, I’ve been doing chores, cleaning out my closet, and taking clothes to GoodWill. Fall and spring are a great time of year to clean, organize, and declutter. “Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall.”- F. Scott Fitzgerald

Here’s a few tips to organize and declutter:

  • Haven’t worn that piece of clothing in the back of your closet in 6 months to a year? Sell it, give it away to GoodWill (if it’s still in decent shape), or if it has holes, rips, is badly faded, etc., then throw it out. Some consignment shops will take gently used clothing, that you can sell to make a little money. It’s taking up space, which you can use for good, new things to come into your life!
  • Are you a book-aholic like me, and have stacks of books? Go through your personal library and choose some books that you’re already read (or haven’t), that you can part with to bless someone else. Some book stores even pay you a few dollars or cents for your books, so you can make a few bucks–or buy more books!
  • Is your Tupperware cabinet overflowing with extra lids and plastic bowls? Organize this space. Put all the same size bowls and containers together. Do the same for the lids. Or close the containers with the lids and neatly stack them on top of each other. Throw out or give away that extra lid! Like the one sock that has lost its mate, it will do you no good.
  • Tackle your junk drawer. Most families have one in the kitchen, bathroom, office, or somewhere, that is a place where everyone tosses random things in a messy pile: screwdriver, hammer, nails, picture hooks, scissors, cords, etc. Recently I went through ours and organized it, getting rid of anything we didn’t need. You’ll feel so much better–until it piles up again!
  • Look through your supply of sheets, pillow cases, and blankets before winter. If they are ripped and torn, get rid of them and buy new ones. Make sure your electric blanket isn’t real old and in good shape to prevent a fire hazard. Now is a good time to buy fresh, new pillows because of dust mites. You can find cute, colorful, soft pillows for your couches or loveseats at Walmart, Kohl’s, and Bed, Bath & Beyond. Walmart has pretty, soft blankets to curl up in and read a good book this cold winter. 
  • Go through every room, closet, and drawer in your house. Look at with a sharp eye. Are there piles of papers? Drawers stuffed with junk you don’t need or use? Cobwebs and dust? Things are in disarray and needing organized? I highly recommend Jennifer Ford Berry’s cute, orange book, Organize Now!, for a complete guide on getting your home and life organized. Get it all done before the holidays hit, so you can just relax and have fun with your family and friends, not worried about your house looks. 

It’s also fun to buy inexpensive fall decorations, like this set of two appetizer plates inscribed with “Thankful/Grateful” and the ceramic orange pumpkin that I found at Target.

appetizer plates
appetizer plates

A fun, annual event that our family does in the fall is visit the Louisburg, MO cider mill, where we buy hot apple cider and eat delicious cider doughnuts. 

fresh apple cider
fresh apple cider
cider doughnuts
cider doughnuts

In autumn, we can enjoy deliciously-scented candles, too, like Pumpkin or Apple Pie or Cinnamon. Light your favorite one at meal time, or take a hot bath soak with lavender, with the lights dim and soft, instrumental music playing to de-stress after a long, hectic day.

Pumpkin scented candles - Pinterest
Pumpkin scented candles

And of course fall is time for Thanksgiving, when we celebrate God’s goodness with family and friends over a feast. My personal faves are the turkey, dressing with gravy, and pumpkin pie! (My mouth is now watering at the thought of the pie!)
Thanksgiving meal

What are some of your favorite things about this season? Leave your comments below.


Happy Resurrection Day

Image courtesy of  [Tanya3597] at
Image courtesy of Tanya3597 at

Jesus is Risen, Halleluah! 

Happy Resurrection Day

I just wanted to wish you and your loved ones a Happy Easter. I’m so thankful for all that Jesus Christ has done for me, and will do. He is worthy of all glory and praise and honor, forever and ever, Amen! May you have a blessed holiday.

“But very early on Sunday morning the women went to the tomb, taking the spices they had prepared. They found that the stone had been rolled away from the entrance. So they went in, but they didn’t find the body of the Lord Jesus.  As they stood there puzzled, two men suddenly appeared to them, clothed in dazzling robes. The women were terrified and bowed with their faces to the ground. Then the men asked, “Why are you looking among the dead for someone who is alive? He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead! Remember what he told you back in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be betrayed into the hands of sinful men and be crucified, and that he would rise again on the third day.” ~ Luke 24:1-7, NLT