Are you waiting to experience joy?

Our pastor has been doing a great series called Songs of the Season that focuses on a different Christmas carol each week. Yesterday was Joy to the World. So, of course, we talked about joy (and yes, he does invite the congregation to interact!). One of his comments got me to thinking about how oftenContinue reading “Are you waiting to experience joy?”

Would you trade your gift?

Each Advent season my church puts together a book of daily devotions written by members. I LOVE it!! Our pastor assigns scripture to volunteers and they then share their thoughts about the verses. It’s such a beautiful, personal gift and look forward to reading advent insights from my church family each morning. And, of course,Continue reading “Would you trade your gift?”

Appalachian Thursday – Decoration Day

Monday is Memorial Day–the unofficial start to summer. And in Appalachia it means time to start planning for Decoration Day. Usually held on a Sunday in June, this is a day when cemeteries would be tidied and flowers placed on the graves. I’m not talking about those silk monstrosities either. I’m talking roses and daisiesContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Decoration Day”

An Anniversary Reflection

On Saturday, my husband and I celebrated 23 years of marriage. That means, as of next year, I will have been married for half my life. My wedding day feels like yesterday AND a lifetime ago. It wasn’t fancy–shoot, it was in the (literally) one-room country church I grew up attending. And if you wantContinue reading “An Anniversary Reflection”

How to Celebrate the Lenten Season

Okay, so not many folks think of Lent, which starts this Wednesday, as a┬ácelebration. This is, after all, a serious time when we’re meant to reflect, repent, and ponder Christ’s sacrifice for us. But I love Lent and, for me, it’s a somber celebration. I relish the notion of having a time set aside toContinue reading “How to Celebrate the Lenten Season”

Mustard Seed Faith – At Last!

For a long time now I’ve assumed, based on Matthew 17:20, that my faith is pretty pitiful. Not even a mustard seed’s worth. That scripture suggests that if my faith were as much as even a BB-sized seed, I could move mountains or cast mulberry bushes into the sea. And I can’t. Goodness knows I’veContinue reading “Mustard Seed Faith – At Last!”

Appalachian Thursday – Mountain Saints

Appalachia is about people as much as it is about place. We have a lovely Christmas tradition at my church. Our pastor gathers scripture for each day of Advent (December 2-24 this year) and assigns them to volunteers who then write a short entry for a devotional that’s handed out to the congregation. I thinkContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Mountain Saints”

The Church in the World

This year, our church opted to do something a bit different in place of our usual homecoming. We hosted a party for the community. Instead of focusing on our history, reminiscing, and then feasting in the fellowship hall, we invited the neighborhood to come out for free BBQ. And it was great! This wasn’t aboutContinue reading “The Church in the World”

French Creek Pioneers

I had the pleasure of attending the French Creek Pioneers gathering this past weekend with my dad and brother. This is a meeting of folks descended from the original settlers of French Creek, Va., back in the early 1800s (before West Virginia became a state). There were Goulds, Youngs, Smallridges, Sextons, and Phillips among others.Continue reading “French Creek Pioneers”