Doing Less Equals Being More

I love to write. And it takes a lot of time to write.  I roughly have 18,000 full-time jobs. I’m a full-time wife, full-time mom, and full-time home maker with a full-time job! It goes without saying (yet here I am saying it; that’s how smart I am you lucky reader you), I struggle to find the time to wash my hair thoroughly let alone to write a blog. Most days something has to give - either for lack of time or lack of energy - and unfortunately for me in this season, it's the writing I've had to hang up like a vintage 1989 telephone.

Learning about God from my Son: On Easter

For God so loved the world

I have been known to say things like,

“I love coffee.”

“I love cupcakes.”

“I love road trips.”

Becoming mom to my son Justice has taught me an ocean full about God’s love for me and for all His creation; as in, all of the world and all of the peoples in the world.

This is actually why, this blog series, “Learning About God from My Son” exists. I wanted a place to share what I’m learning about God in the hopes it might help you to know and believe of His incredible love more and more and be a place Justice could one day look back on and read about his crazy momma’s love for him because of God’s faithfulness to me.

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On Raising Royalty

One of the more quoted movies in my household is Coming to America. You remember the movie. Eddie Murphy plays an African prince who has servants upon servants at his feet, ready and willing to do anything and everything for him. On the night of the Prince’s 21st birthday, he is presented with a wife who has been groomed her entire life to serve him. The Prince wants a real relationship; not a mechanical, robotic one so he heads off to America in search of life outside the walls of his African Kingdom. If you haven't seen Coming to America, stop reading this and watch it right now.

My son Justice is a prince.


That's right; he is royalty!


With a last name like Ngangnang, you might be wondering if he is an actual African prince. He is African and as funny as Eddie Murphy, but my son's royalty isn't rooted in his Cameroonian heritage. It runs much deeper and wider.

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Learning about God from my Son: Create vs. Copy

My two year old son Justice is really into cars and trucks lately. He can race his cars around the living room floor at what I am certain he imagines is lightening speed. "Zoom! Zoom! Zoom!"

Like all kids, his imagination is so alive and active, I’m pretty sure he has enough energy to run a marathon. He's constantly exploring and seeking newness and adventure. And I love to watch him play and figure stuff out. He's curious and not afraid to try new things. Seeing his desire to learn causes me to want to show him more, teach him more, encourage him more and ultimately create space for him to flourish into the daring, dangerous, compassionate man I pray he becomes.

Because I know, and so do you, creativity and imagination tend to get shoved down and left behind as we grow up and go about our day-to-day lives with domestic duties, job responsibilities, family care, friendships and so on. We lose the excitement of imagination and the energy to dream of what could be. Some would argue creativity and imagination are for children. How many of us have thought of ourselves as a dollar short in the creativity bank? I certainly have!

In his third book release, titled, Create vs. Copy, author Ken Wytsma rekindles the creative flame we were all created with. In his own words, Ken says, "this book is meant to encourage you about the good news of your God-given creative capacity and how to harness it to take charge of your life, flourish, succeed, and find innovative and exciting ways to navigate the circumstances of life.”

Did you catch the part about "God-given creative capacity"? If we have God-given creative capacity, then we have God-given creative capacity! Having an active imagination and being creative isn't set aside for energetic toddlers and kids. Likewise, being creative isn't just for artists.

In the first half of the book, Wytsma draws attention to the creative attribute of God. He is creative. God creates. It’s who He is. And because God creates and He created us in His image, we too are creative. Wytsma puts it this way, "I like to say that when we're being creative, it's as if we're taking the image of God in us out for a walk."

You are creative! You were born a creator. "Creativity is a human trait." If you are the person who has said, "I don't have a creative bone in my body", I completely get it and this is good news for us!

We’re not just talking creating art here. Being creative runs so much deeper than paint strokes on canvass. Being creative means fully recognizing issues or problems around us, dreaming up ways to correct the issue and then innovating to change the issue. This is huge!

“Embracing creativity is about leaning into who we are as children of a creative God, whose Spirit and power move in our lives as we respond to Him and endeavor to make space for life.”

Which leads me to the second half of Create vs. Copy where Wystma provides practical application on practising creativity via awakening the child like creativity we all innately inherited from our Creator God.

It’s important to keep our imaginations active. Authors and story tellers such as C.S. Lewis understood this and ran with it.

“Imagination not only helps us see more clearly what is, but what should be.”

You don’t have to go far to see, to know and to experience the brokenness of the world.  Things are clearly not what they should be.

As the redeemed and healed body of the Church, the followers of Jesus, we can live lives that reflect the what should be; even in the midst of the what is. Jesus taught us how to live in the what should be by how he treated people and by the illustrations he taught through the parable stories.

Our God-given creativity allows us to recognize the broken pieces of the universe and our imaginations help us dream up what should be. So we ought to create, to try new things, to move into some form of action in an attempt to take steps towards a dream made reality in our spheres of influence.

“Creativity makes space for life to flourish.”

“Our creativity most closely approximates God’s creativity when our ultimate purposes align with his.” I love this!

Prayer, wise counsel, and a supportive, encouraging network help us then innovate and bring our dreams into reality. Here is where change takes place and we step into the life God intended for us. And it’s never just for us. God uses each of us to share His love with those around us.

For 7 or so years now I’ve had an idea floating around my head. I’ve learned, collected a lot of information and feel compelled to write. Yet, it was only recently I began actually writing. I felt ill equipped and unprepared, yet the idea and the desire to just get it out and write has only grown.  As my pastor told me, “Carrie, this is either your thing, or it’s the thing you have to do to get to your thing.” So I’m writing more. Guys, I’m being creative! I’m intentionally creating space to write. I’m blocking out chunks of time to write. I’m just going for it. I also have a few trusted friends helping with it and a lot of pray around it.

And I have no idea what or how what I’m writing may be used. But that’s the exciting part. The unknown. With God, nothing is impossible! So my friends, create, create, create! It’s you are. It’s what you were made for! Create space for others to flourish and you will too.

Create vs. Copy releases tomorrow (March 1). Grab your copy today on Amazon. My hope for you is that you flourish into all of who God created you to be! Check out the book trailer too.

On Disneyland and Danger

There is nothing safe about the Christian life.

Jesus is the CEO of Restoration

Jesus is in the business of restoration. It’s who He is. He is the CEO of restoration. He has restored. He is restoring now. And he will continue to restore for as long as it takes until His global restoration plan is complete! All things will be new again.

Today I wanted to share one of my favorite stories of Jesus restoring two different women in two very different ways, yet both resulting in finding their place in the family of God.

Read Luke 8:40-56.

Now when Jesus returned, a crowd welcomed him, for they were all expecting him.  Then a man named Jairus, a synagogue leader, came and fell at Jesus’ feet, pleading with him to come to his house  because his only daughter, a girl of about twelve, was dying.

As Jesus was on his way, the crowds almost crushed him. And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years, but no one could heal her. She came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak, and immediately her bleeding stopped.

“Who touched me?” Jesus asked.

When they all denied it, Peter said, “Master, the people are crowding and pressing against you.”

But Jesus said, “Someone touched me; I know that power has gone out from me.”

Then the woman, seeing that she could not go unnoticed, came trembling and fell at his feet. In the presence of all the people, she told why she had touched him and how she had been instantly healed.  Then he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace.”

While Jesus was still speaking, someone came from the house of Jairus, the synagogue leader. “Your daughter is dead,” he said. “Don’t bother the teacher anymore.”

Hearing this, Jesus said to Jairus, “Don’t be afraid; just believe, and she will be healed.”

When he arrived at the house of Jairus, he did not let anyone go in with him except Peter, John and James, and the child’s father and mother.  Meanwhile, all the people were wailing and mourning for her. “Stop wailing,” Jesus said. “She is not dead but asleep.”

They laughed at him, knowing that she was dead.  But he took her by the hand and said, “My child, get up!”  Her spirit returned, and at once she stood up. Then Jesus told them to give her something to eat.  Her parents were astonished, but he ordered them not to tell anyone what had happened.

This story is packed with counter cultural acts made my Jesus. Here we see a synagogue leader, Jairus, with a family emergency. Culturally, at the time this story was unfolding, synagogue leaders were held in high esteem, much like our Church Pastors and leaders are to us today. We respect them and care deeply for them and their families.

Jairus was correct in asking Jesus to go to his sick and dying daughter. He had great faith and he believed Jesus could heal and restore his daughter's health.

As Jesus sets out towards Jairus’ house, something unexpected happened, causing Jesus to stop on His way to an emergency. He felt healing power go from Him and He asked an intriguing question to a shoulder-to-shoulder crowd of people surrounding Him. It’s intriguing because with a crowd pressing in on Jesus, it would not be surprising if a number of people touched Him along the way. So why does He stop for this one?

And when we learn who He stops for, it’s even more counter-cultural. He stops for a woman who had been subjected to 12 years of bleeding. Culturally, during this day, women were second class citizens behind men, especially elite men such as synagogue leaders. Why would Jesus stop helping a prominent leader in the community for a woman, a bleeding woman at that. Also during that day, if a woman bled, it meant she was unclean and therefore was required to stay outside the walls of the city until the bleeding stopped. She was an outcast of society.

This woman had a condition that caused her to bleed for 12 years! She was isolated and poor because she had spent all she had in search for a cure.

She too had incredible faith to believe her cure was found in the touch of Jesus. And she too was right. The moment she touched even the hem of the Jesus` clothing, her body was healed and the bleeding ceased.

But we know Jesus isn’t only in the business of healing us physically. He cares about all of us and is in active pursuit of those desiring a holistic healing of the mind and heart and soul. He died for all of us.

By this time Jairus must have been sweating bullets. He must have known time with his daughter was fading fast. The Bible doesn’t tell us how long Jesus spent listening to bleeding woman’s story. All we know is He took the time to stop, turn, listen and the result of that relational encounter not only healed her physical ailments, in that moment Jesus restored Her into her God-given place as His Daughter in His family. She was no longer an outcast; she was now a daughter in the Kingdom of God.

And, as the crowd likely suspected by this unusual behavior of Jesus, while He took the time to see the culturally shunned woman and heal her, restoring her, Jairus gets word his daughter has died. In that moment he must have been devastated.

As if Jesus had accomplished enough crazy on this day, He says to Jairus, “she will be healed.”

He finally makes His way to Jairus’ home and commands his daughter to get up. Her life restored, she stood up again, living and breathing.

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Learning about God from my Son: The Ferris Wheel Ride

I don’t do carnival rides.

New Book: Create vs. Copy

Have you ever wondered if it’s possible for your brain to explode with all the thoughts you have swirling around in there? Between to-do lists, grocery lists, work calendars, personal calendars, church calendars, domestic duties, monitoring social media notifications, emails, texts, don’t you sometimes want to turn it all off, sit in a big comfy chair with a steaming hot cup of coffee in absolutely silence? I certainly do!

As a wife, a mom of a hilarious and very active 2 year old boy, a full-time working professional in a demanding and fast-paced industry, an active participant in my local church and a friend to others, I often get the feeling I’m coming up short, falling behind and totally unprepared for all I have before me.

Interruptions and Healing

Most of the time when Jesus healed, performed miracles and had life altering encounters with people, it was unplanned and an interruption in His day.

My favorite interruption story is found in Luke 8. Jesus is on His way to heal a sick girl when someone in a large crowd touched the hem of his robe. He stopped and asked who touched Him. Despite the emergency of the dying girl before Him, Jesus stopped, turned towards the woman who touched Him and the Bible tells us “she told why she had touched Him…” We don’t know how long the woman poured out her story to Jesus. We do know she was physically healed of chronic bleeding the second she touched Jesus’ robe and we see by Jesus’ response to her sharing when He says, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace” she found healing in her soul.

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God's Adoption Plan is Jesus

I was not yet a mom when I spent a week at a state run orphanage in Moldova.

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I drink coffee, read books, and travel. I’ve been able to drink coffee and discuss books with friends all over the world, simply because someone built a bridge and I made it east of the Mississippi and beyond. For this reason, I love bridges.