Grace & Truth


What I Really Want to Say…

Have you ever had something you wanted to say, but your words got in the way?

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Shatter the Image

I think we’d all like to break our mirrors and throw them away at times.   They help us and they hurt us. Ultimately, sometimes they control us. Recently I had the opportunity to talk to teenage girls about friend drama, or perhaps more accurately, girl drama.  I hate it when people stereotype what girls are like, myself […]

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What if?

What if Donald Trump is elected as the next President of the United States? What if Hillary Clinton is elected as the next President of the United States? On November 8th I will go to the polls and vote, just as I always have since I came of age. Then I will be glad it’s […]

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Experiencing God?

My favorite day of all time was August 9, 2014. Glacier National Park had been on my bucket list for many years, and we were there!  I was with my family in the midst of the most beautiful country I have ever seen.  My dream of hiking the Alps faded into the background at Glacier.  I […]

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A Gracious Spirit

I’ve been in a little bit of a funk for a few weeks, struggling with some decisions and change that came into my life.   Maybe, if you’re like me, you struggle in times of change too. You wonder whether you’ve heard God right, wavering as to whether the current change is related to a lack of listening, […]

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Way Beyond Me

In a little over a month, our daughter Katy will leave to spend her fall semester studying in Italy. There she will complete classes for her Biblical Studies major, including studying the Italian Reformation in the land where it all took place.  After that, she hopes to spend another semester in Germany and Switzerland during the 500th anniversary of […]

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He Himself is Our Peace

“If someone had written this year in the news as a novel, I would have ridiculed the plot as amateurishly unrealistic.” -Russell Moore Grieved? Helpless? Disgusted? Numb? What’s next?  Massacres, shootings, hatred, terror, racism, murder, crazy politics, religious liberty in question, a nation that is divided on so many issues we can’t even name them […]

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Organic Discipleship

Perhaps many of us understand the idea of  discipleship as the process, through discipline, of becoming like the one we follow.  For the Christian, discipleship means becoming more like Jesus Christ. As His followers we are right with God and holy in Christ from salvation, but from that time forward we begin to grow so that our […]

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Unsung Heroes of Giving

Today our family learned we will say goodbye to someone we love.  For the past two-and-a-half years we have sponsored Dayana, a fatherless little girl living in Haiti who came to our attention through the Christian relief organization Vision Trust.  We have become attached to Dayana as we have given monthly to support her needs and the […]

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A Return to Eastern Europe

Following is an update on my friend Laura’s trip to Eastern Europe. She begins her journey home tomorrow. There is a great need in Poland for English teachers who will share the gospel and their lives as well. From Laura: Wow, is Poland ever different from 27 years ago! Back then everything in Eastern Europe came in varying […]

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Bible Smuggler!

If you’re at least 40 years old, you remember the cold war, the iron curtain, and the communist regimes that dominated Eastern Europe from World War II until they successively collapsed during the late 1980s and early 1990s. If you attended church in the 70s and 80s you may also have heard Bible-smuggling stories from behind the iron curtain […]

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Unexpected Gifts -The Christmas Brooch

When I was a little girl, I looked forward to the Christmas bazaar my church hosted each fall. There were many enjoyable things at the bazaar, but I dreamt of the taste of the glass candy sold in the sweet shop and of Mildred Ringer’s divinity treats.  Christmas crafts adorned the church in almost any media, all for […]

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Unexpected Gifts

Recently I was given the privilege of sharing with the junior high youth group at Central Ministries.  They are a great bunch of kids and they were attentive and fun! Because the youth group has been talking about unexpected gifts, I told the story of one of my most memorable unexpected gifts. It was Christmas Eve in […]

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When You’re Weak

For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength. 1 Corinthians 1:25 Our church is presenting a drive-through nativity this weekend for the Fort Wayne community. Last night 380 cars drove through scenes that progressed from the modern-day hustle and bustle of the Christmas season […]

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I am Rich!

I am rich. I’m overwhelmingly rich, but I’m not talking about a bank account or houses or stuff. I’m not even talking about the fact that I live in one of the most wealthy nations on earth where we have more material wealth than 99% of all people in the world. Those things describe many Americans. I’ve […]

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Close to His Heart

10See, the Sovereign Lord comes with power, and he rules with a mighty arm. See, his reward is with him, and his recompense accompanies him. 11He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young.                 […]

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Indescribable

I have been studying Gripped by the Greatness of God (James MacDonald) along with many (80-100?) other women from Central Ministries. One of the assignments this week was to go outside to enjoy God’s creation. Yes please! Today was a perfect fall day. There was a gentle breeze and the drying leaves crackled beneath my feet. […]

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Finishing Strong

Tonight I am writing a salute to a lady I met recently though my work. Phyllis (not her real name) is in her eighties and  confused at times.  However, as is often the case, she is not confused about the Scriptures.  I have seen this time and again. Whether people with dementia, or the mentally disabled, or the […]

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Follow Me There

This week I’ve been awestruck while preparing to lead a discussion about God’s nature.  There are many things about Him that are beyond description, but today I was truly taken with the fact that He is as a shelter for all who take refuge in Him. He loves us enough to be there for us without fail.  Read Psalm 91 […]

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The Sacrifice of Love

“Do you really love God?”  It was the drummer at a Christian concert who had come to the mic to ask the question. I was probably seventeen and a junior in high school as I sat in the Archbold High School Gymnasium for the concert.  I remember thinking, “I believe in God and I am […]

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The Great Omission: what an excellent book!

I’d like to recommend a fantastic book I just finished reading by Dallas Willard. Willard was a Christian philosopher who wrote and spoke extensively on spiritual identity, formation, and discipleship.  He passed away in 2013, but His books will continue to leave a permanent imprint on his readers and on Christian culture. The title of the book is The Great […]

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Why the Title?

I’m tired of all the fighting, and I don’t want to hear from another extremist! Have you ever felt that way? Balance is key to a successful life: joy and pain, truth and fiction, sweet and salty 🙂 Jesus modeled a balanced life.  We are told in the gospels that Jesus came from the Father, full of grace […]

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Make Disciples

When I was a sophomore in college I met a new friend named Linda through a campus ministry we both attended.  After a little while, Linda asked me if I would like to meet with her one morning each week to read the Bible together. I had been in a Bible study in high school, but […]

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In Light of Eternity- Reposted from Fruitfulsteps, April 30, 2012

APRIL 30, 2012 BY VICKIGATCHELL In Light of Eternity Photo courtesy of Tami Werling Years ago I attended a summer training program with a Christian ministry called The Navigators.  It was a 4 week venture where a small group of collegiates, together with a few staff, met to work, to play, and to study the scriptures.  It was […]

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It’s all in the Gaze

Have you ever noticed what a difference it can make to change your gaze? Last Saturday I had a terrible afternoon.  It shouldn’t have been that way since I had free time and I was with my family.  The thing is, we were watching our Ohio State Buckeyes and they were playing poorly, just as […]

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Rest in Thee

It’s Friday night and I am finishing a week of posts about how we can only find lasting fulfillment in Christ.  It seems fitting that I end with one of  my favorite quotes from early church father St. Augustine of Hippo.  Augustine lived in the third century after Jesus, and was a theologian and philosopher.  I […]

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In Grace and Truth

What could I say that would possibly change my corner of the world? Perhaps that’s the one question that keeps me from writing more than any other. And yet my heart races and even overflows with thoughts of encouragement for those within my circle of influence. I am a Christ follower. I believe in the […]

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