The light from my half-decorated Christmas tree cast a rutilant glow over my living room. Ribbons and garlands and my golden tree skirt sat on my coffee table in wait, ready to play their part in celebrating Jesus’s birth. As for me, I was slumped … [Read more...] about Waiting on God
My Broken Engagement
Has God forgotten me? No, my heart said. But it wasn't a statement of faith. It was a cry of sorrow: I wish that he had. Because if he had forgotten me, it would mean that he didn’t know about my broken engagement, that he wasn't an indifferent … [Read more...] about My Broken Engagement
A Compassionate High Priest
Jesus offers us compassion. Many of us understand this on an intellectual level, which is a good thing—it is important to know that Jesus is compassionate. But perhaps that intellectual understanding is just the beginning of letting our lives and … [Read more...] about A Compassionate High Priest
To The Heavy Laden
The other day when I came home after work, I had to finish up a freelance project. Then, I needed to do a superfast grocery run (at rush hour!) because a friend was coming over the next day. Then, I had to give two piano lessons. After that—it was … [Read more...] about To The Heavy Laden
A God Who Weeps
At the top of the first line of Ludwig van Beethoven’s Sonata Pathetique reads the Italian word grave. The chords are supposed to linger in the air in that slow solemn tempo, but when I was studying the piece in preparation for a college audition, I … [Read more...] about A God Who Weeps
Am I supposed to change the world?
“I probably wouldn’t apply for these scholarships. They are for people who want to change the world,” my college advisor said. He flipped through my résumé and then paused to make eye contact with me. Point taken. But am I supposed to change the … [Read more...] about Am I supposed to change the world?
What I Learned in Honors 102
The seminar was called Honors 102. A mismatched collection of old dining chairs surrounded a large pine table covered with etchings from students long before my time. The windows, one on each end of the room, displayed the large white columns of the … [Read more...] about What I Learned in Honors 102
A Necessary Extravagance
When I moved out of my parents' house to Atlanta, GA, my mother gave me a flower vase. It was clear glass with diagonal etchings in it, and it sat under my sink for ten months until my birthday last year, when my boyfriend of six weeks showed up at … [Read more...] about A Necessary Extravagance
At the Watering Hole
When I think about lions, I imagine a fierce, magnificent, beautiful creature prowling around the Serengeti. It has total control; its mane and fur are the color of the sun itself, and its sharp teeth deter prey. Proverbs describes lions as “the … [Read more...] about At the Watering Hole
Drawing Hudson Taylor
Last summer, I needed a gift for a friend, and the obvious possibilities—a giftcard to JCrew, a giftcard to Banana Republic, a giftcard to Target—didn’t strike a chord. Trying to think of other things my friend liked, I remembered his admiration of … [Read more...] about Drawing Hudson Taylor
At Magic Reservoir
The fresh snow on top of the lake was so deep that I wasn’t sure where the lake started and where the beach ended. In fact, until I got on my hands and knees, dug through the snow, and hit a cold brick of clear ice, I didn’t believe that I was … [Read more...] about At Magic Reservoir
God, Do You Still Love Me?
I can open my Bible to Psalm 37 in the dark. It’s because I stained the pages with tears six years ago, and now, as if in memorial to what the Psalm did for me then, their wrinkles remain, like capillaries in the sand left by a dried river. I can … [Read more...] about God, Do You Still Love Me?
When Hope is Hard
In Genesis, Abraham and Sarah grapple with the pain of having no children. Although God promised they would become a great nation (Genesis 12:2; 15:5), the waiting became agonizing, and Sarah gave Abraham her servant Hagar in an effort to accomplish … [Read more...] about When Hope is Hard
An Identity in Christ
When I was in college, a large portion of my identity was wrapped up in what my professors thought of me. I desperately wanted to be seen as intelligent, and I would get nervous before meeting with them, pour myself into my work, and agonize as I … [Read more...] about An Identity in Christ
Hope After Eden
Perhaps one of the saddest scenes of the Biblical narrative is in Genesis 3, when Adam and Eve are expelled from the Garden of Eden. We read: …the Lord God sent Adam out from the garden of Eden to work the ground from which he was taken. He drove … [Read more...] about Hope After Eden
Is God Faithful…Even Here?
On the day before Valentine's Day, I questioned if God was faithful for what felt like the silliest, most insignificant reason. I was making—trying to make—a pavlova (a large meringue topped with whipped cream and fruit) for a church party. I had a … [Read more...] about Is God Faithful…Even Here?
What Does the Bible Say about Gossip?
When we were in high school, my friends and I had a tough history teacher, whom I’ll call Mr. Smith. One day as we rode the bus back from a band competition, we vented about our latest grievance against him, sparing no mercy in detailing our dislike. … [Read more...] about What Does the Bible Say about Gossip?
What is God’s Will for My Life?
When I was in college, I struggled with not knowing God’s will about my future career. The common question What do you plan to do after graduation? triggered shame and anger. As time went on and I still lacked clarity, I began to feel as if the Lord … [Read more...] about What is God’s Will for My Life?
10 Christian Quotes on Overcoming Fear
We have no reason to fear because we know the Lord is with us always! However, even if we have no reason to be afraid, we still experience fear at difficult moments in our lives. These Christian quotes on overcoming fear are powerful reminders that … [Read more...] about 10 Christian Quotes on Overcoming Fear
10 Encouraging Quotes on Biblical Joy
As Christians, we are called to have joy in all circumstances. However, that's often very difficult. Our lives are fragile, and it can be tough to focus on the Lord in times of sorrow or pain. That truth is no stranger to any of the writers of these … [Read more...] about 10 Encouraging Quotes on Biblical Joy
Greater Than Happiness: Joy in the Lord
The past few months of my life have been less than stellar. A hard-hitting cocktail of family troubles, physical pain, and church hurt took its emotional toll, and my thoughts started to spiral, fast-tracking me to discouragement and feelings of … [Read more...] about Greater Than Happiness: Joy in the Lord
The Opposite of Fear: Resting in the Character of God
“I’m going to ring you up quickly so that you can leave before they lock the doors,” the cashier told me as sirens wailed outside. “We do that when there’s a tornado warning.” My thoughts began to circulate: What if someone I loved gets hurt? What … [Read more...] about The Opposite of Fear: Resting in the Character of God
Not Good Enough: Taking Feelings of Unworthiness Captive to the Gospel
I didn't expect feelings of unworthiness to inundate me in the candle aisle at Marshalls. But when I ran into an old acquaintance and exchanged life updates in the midst of Pumpkin Spice and Evergreen scents, a sinking thought came over me: I am not … [Read more...] about Not Good Enough: Taking Feelings of Unworthiness Captive to the Gospel
Rejection: The Biblical Response
When I was a junior in college, my church announced a need for small group leaders. I thought I might be a good fit, so I volunteered. A few Sundays later, all of the new leaders and the people who wanted to join a small group gathered after … [Read more...] about Rejection: The Biblical Response
A Holy Preoccupation: Worship
I joined my church’s worship team in July. I've enjoyed my experience as a keys player, which has consisted of learning how to decipher lead sheets, navigate a futuristic keyboard and laptop setup, and play with in-ears and electric guitarists. At … [Read more...] about A Holy Preoccupation: Worship
When God Seems Silent
I've prayed for something for a decade that hasn’t yet come to pass. There are months where the sting of waiting wanes. But there are those where it doesn’t, where the seeming interminability of the situation - and God's silence - threatens to … [Read more...] about When God Seems Silent
What is Truth?
Sometimes as I read the Bible, a long-familiar verse will jump out at me, brimming with sudden relevance to my life. A few years ago, this happened to me with John 18:38, where Pontius Pilate asks, “What is truth?” I had never really … [Read more...] about What is Truth?
A Wound of Contrition
Two years ago, I was finishing up my undergraduate thesis. My advisor was a suave Ivy League production, and his affirmation meant more to me than…almost everything. When he treated me as though I were his equal and took my ideas seriously, it made … [Read more...] about A Wound of Contrition
Victory, Already Achieved
This week, I found myself more cognizant of my dependence on the grace of God than I have been in a long time. I was fearful and anxious instead of remembering that God knows me. I fell into familiar strongholds of my flesh, which shouts at … [Read more...] about Victory, Already Achieved
I got an email this morning, the first results of my graduate applications, and I was denied. I didn’t help that it wasn’t even among the most prestigious schools I’d applied for. Fear immediately set in: I’m not going to get into any of the others, … [Read more...] about On Calling
On Nabeel Qureshi
I met Nabeel Qureshi, a Christian apologist whose conversion from Islam cost him almost everything, in June 2016. His love for the gospel drew me in, and I later followed him on Facebook, hoping to learn even more from Nabeel. After hearing of his … [Read more...] about On Nabeel Qureshi