How do we keep young people in the church?

What would the church be like if more young people kept the faith during the teen years? Pastor Jon Nielson recently wrote an article entitled 3 Common Traits of Youth Who Don’t Leave the Church. Here’s an excerpt: “What do we do about our kids?” The group of parents sat together in my office, wiping their eyes.…


Voices from the past

A sad reality hit me the other night. As I was talking with my nephew about his deceased grandparents (and great-grandparents), it struck me that I’ve largely forgotten what their voices sounded like. I can hear them pronounce certain words and how they phrased things in my head, but that’s no way to convey that to my nephew. Before…


A king, a toilet, and a cave

One of the things we allow our girls to do as we read through the Bible, is to pull out the crayons and paper and draw something that they heard. This allows them to keep their hands busy, while soaking in the reading. One of my favorite drawings came from our Kindergartener. (And I really wish I had kept it). It was a guy, wearing a crown,…


We Love Our Volunteers

Thanks to those volunteers who have manned phones to keep us on track this week!  Share continues to be a highlight for so many who get to put on the headsets, take down gifts and pledges and here story after story of changed lives. If you’ve thought about it but never volunteered for a share event, there’s always next…


Blest be family ties that bind

I took my daughter out for her birthday this week.  It’s becoming one of my “most looked forward to” rituals. She lives with her husband in Cedar Falls so when I’m in town the week of her birthday, we pick an exotic destination and we go.  We celebrate her birthday, and we catch up.  Looking forward…


Risk vs. caution

I have two daughters, and while they’re similar in a lot of ways, they’re also very different. This is really evident in how they approach physical activity. My older daughter, Bekah, tends to be pretty cautious. When she got her first bike recently and it didn’t have training wheels, she barely wanted to be on…


School lunches boring already?

Are your kiddos complaining already about the boring, cold lunches that they have to take to school?   Do you take your kids shopping to get them pumped up and let them choose items to put into their lunch only to grab the same ol’ things?  Me too!  It’s so much easier to throw a PB&J sandwich in with an apple and…


Dinner ideas that won’t heat up the kitchen

In the heat of summer the last thing you want to do is turn on the oven and heat up the kitchen.  Yuck!  But you also have a home and family to feed so what are some tasty ideas for lunch or dinner that won’t heat up the house? Here are a few of my favorites: Grilled Chicken Wraps… Grilled (or stir fried) chicken breast slices marinated


Exposure therapy

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.         Philippians 4:6 Therapists at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN have developed an innovative approach to helping children overcome anxiety.  It’s called Exposure Therapy. Exposure…

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Family fun night

In the last days of winter, cabin fever is setting in around Eastern Iowa. A few new ideas for fun will make the rest of winter a little easier.



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