From Surviving to Thriving: Radical Acceptance (Comfort: Psalm 139:19-21)

O that you would kill the wicked, O God, and that the bloodthirsty would depart from me— those who speak of you maliciously, and lift themselves up against you for evil!” -Psalm 139:19-21

This is not the life I thought I’d be living. Whether it’s the sleepless nights of new parenthood, the stressful realities of the perceived dream job, or the caregiving responsibilities of tending an aging parent, we all face moments where our envisioned life doesn’t match up with reality.  

It’s easy to move to a place of envy when the lives of others seem problem free and shiny.  The rise of curated social media accounts only exacerbates these feelings. No exotic vacation photos when you can’t take a trip away from your caregiving duties. No new cut and color shots for comment and affirmation when you barely have time to take a shower. 

And yet, fighting against the current context doesn’t breed satisfaction, contentment or joy. How might “radical acceptance” of your present reality lead to greater joy? Instead of looking for external validation or longing to live a different life, what gift is present in this day? 

God, protect my heart and mind from making enemies where there are none. You are a God of dreams, hope and good works. May my efforts today be part of doing good where you have planted me. Amen. 


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Some Comfort and Joy was developed as a devotional resource that follows the rhythms and seasons of the liturgical year from an Anabaptist-Mennonite perspective.

From Surviving to Thriving: The Joy of Truth-Telling

Spend a few moments today journaling the truth of your situation. Find a comfortable space and using your journal, loose-leaf paper, or an index card, take time to do an unedited brain dump of some truth you are carrying around in your head and heart. Perhaps it’s a short list of what you know for sure, a rant about a perceived injustice in a close relationship, or a prayer of lament around a painful experience or broken relationship. 

As you set the raw writings aside, over the next few days consider if this is a truth that can be shared with a trusted friend or spoken to God in prayer. 

God you know my heart, soul and mind. May I find comfort and assurance knowing you care for the truth of my experiences. May your peace be with me as I name these things before you. Amen. 


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Some Comfort and Joy was developed as a devotional resource that follows the rhythms and seasons of the liturgical year from an Anabaptist-Mennonite perspective.

From Surviving to Thriving: Telling the Truth (Comfort: Psalm 139: 15-16)

My frame was not hidden from you,
when I was being made in secret,
intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes beheld my unformed substance.
In your book were written
all the days that were formed for me,
when none of them as yet existed.
Psalm 139:15-16

A few years ago, when our family was going through a tough transition, my sister Callie said, “I am committed to saying true things.”  These were important words for our family as we navigated the new situation we found ourselves in. 

Another way to say it might be, “Tell the truth as much as you can.”  It isn’t always easy to face up to the truth, but turning away doesn’t make the truth any different.  Being authentic in the world means trying to speak the truth when we can, clinging to grace always, and acknowledging that we are learning more each day.  

 Our abundantly wise God knows us completely and loves us.  This is a truth that needs to be told again and again.  When we face the truth we can see that we often do the thing we don’t want to do.  We also get it right sometimes. But always, we are God’s children and loved by God.   

God,  Quiet us to listen more closely when You speak.  Give us courage to see Your truth. Loosen our tongues to speak about Your Love.  AMEN


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Some Comfort and Joy was developed as a devotional resource that follows the rhythms and seasons of the liturgical year from an Anabaptist-Mennonite perspective.

From Surviving to Thriving: The Joy of Being Myself (Psalm 139:

For it was you who formed my inward parts;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works;
that I know very well.” 
Psalm 139:13-14

How do we practice being ourselves?  How do we celebrate being unique while still participating in community life?  We are our own selves and we also are parts of larger wholes in our families, churches and work settings.

Take some time today to acknowledge your own ability to take up space in the world.  If you are a person who finds themselves apologizing frequently, try to be aware of that habit.  What would it look like to be a person in the world who acknowledges their own God-created beauty and doesn’t apologize for taking up space?

If you are a person who does not have trouble occupying your own space in the world, what could you do to emphasize or encourage someone else this week?


We hope this brings you some comfort and joy! You can spread the joy by liking, commenting and sharing this post with others. Be sure to subscribe and never miss a post.


Some Comfort and Joy was developed as a devotional resource that follows the rhythms and seasons of the liturgical year from an Anabaptist-Mennonite perspective.

From Surviving to Thriving: Being Myself (Comfort: Psalm 139:13-14)

For it was you who formed my inward parts; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; that I know very well.”  -Psalm 139:13-14

Recently, I had to take a trip for work. It involved masks, airports, ubering. Essentially a lot of things outside of my control. I was stressed about it for weeks. 

My best friend loves to travel; the possibility, the unknown, all the newness makes her heart sing.

While my friend and I have much in common, travel is not one of those things. Each of us has preferences, delights, and fears. We are uniquely wired.

It is easy to get caught up in what we think our lives should be like, influenced by the North American standards of a “good life,” sometimes we find we are striving after things we don’t actually want, need or even like. 

As I scroll the socials, seeing beautiful trip pictures, I have to remind myself, I don’t actually want that. Flying stresses me out. I don’t like sleeping in a tent. Sitting in sand is not actually delightful for me.

Today when envy or desire catches your heart, take a moment and consider what you actually want. 

God, may I revel in the unique ways you have formed and gifted me, trusting that being my true self is the best way to be in this world. Amen. 


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Some Comfort and Joy was developed as a devotional resource that follows the rhythms and seasons of the liturgical year from an Anabaptist-Mennonite perspective.

From Surviving to Thriving: The Joy of My Work

Studies show that the level of self-compassion we have for ourselves directly correlates to the amount of grace and care we are able to extend to others. 

When the demands on our time are intense, whether from emotionally demanding work outside of the home, the efforts of parenting, or the exhaustion that comes from caregiving, often the care for our own needs and dreams gets dropped off the to-do list. The tyranny of the urgent pushes out our own self-care (let alone any hobbies or guilty pleasures). 

You are the only one who can care for your body and well-being. As the saying goes, you can’t pour from an empty cup. Take a few moments today to do something kind for yourself. Watch a favorite show, start reading a novel, listen to music that brings a smile to your face or invite a friend to meet for coffee. 

Tender Creator God, may I remember that you look at me with love. May I speak with kindness and compassion to myself and to those I am caring for. Amen. 


We hope this brings you some comfort and joy! You can spread the joy by liking, commenting and sharing this post with others. Be sure to subscribe and never miss a post.


Some Comfort and Joy was developed as a devotional resource that follows the rhythms and seasons of the liturgical year from an Anabaptist-Mennonite perspective.

From Surviving to Thriving: To Each Their Own Journey (Comfort: Psalm 139: 11-12)

If I say, ‘Surely the darkness shall cover me,
and the light around me become night,
even the darkness is not dark to you;
the night is as bright as the day,
for darkness is as light to you.
Psalm 139:11 and 12

We’re sitting at a middle school soccer game and a parent off to the right, down along the playing field is yelling at the referee, at the coaches, and at the players.  Especially, he is yelling at his own son on the field.  Everyone around this loud parent is getting more and more uncomfortable.  

And, of course, this father isn’t alone on the sidelines.  I find that each year, as my children get older, I am asked in new ways to release them to create their own journeys.  Seeing loved ones and those we care about struggle is painful for us too.  But sometimes the gift to others is allowing them to make mistakes and learn in their own time.  

Learning to see others as separate individuals is a gift of grace to ourselves and to them.  By saying no that’s yours to do, we also are empowering the other person.  It might be as small as tying their own shoes or as large as giving an aging adult the chance to live independently in a new way. We can show we believe that those in our care can successfully live their own journey, by allowing them to make mistakes and have successes.

God, bring us into the light.  Thank you that you see each of us and have abounding grace for us as individuals, as families, and as members of your larger community.  AMEN


We hope this brings you some comfort and joy! You can spread the joy by liking, commenting and sharing this post with others. Be sure to subscribe and never miss a post.


Some Comfort and Joy was developed as a devotional resource that follows the rhythms and seasons of the liturgical year from an Anabaptist-Mennonite perspective.

From Surviving to Thriving: The Joy of Balance (Psalm 139: 9-10)

If I take the wings of the morning
and settle at the farthest limits of the sea,  
even there your hand shall lead me,
and your right hand shall hold me fast.” 
-Psalm 139: 9-10

Each of us is a unique coming together of God’s handiwork.  We are a mixture of personality, intellect and the environment around us.  Yet we also have universal struggles in life.  

Finding a healthy rhythm in life is elusive!  Yet it remains important work that takes self awareness.  Are you a person who always says yes?  Or are you afraid to commit to new situations and say no as a knee jerk response?

Whatever your bent, try to notice your natural tendencies this week.  Do you automatically say yes?  Give yourself permission to say, “I’ll get back to you on that.”  Think it over realistically and then respond.

Consider giving 80% to something this week.  With the 20% left choose a life-giving activity.

If you normally say no, consider saying yes to your family or work colleagues this week.  How will your “Yes!” expand God’s love in the world?


We hope this brings you some comfort and joy! You can spread the joy by liking, commenting and sharing this post with others. Be sure to subscribe and never miss a post.


Some Comfort and Joy was developed as a devotional resource that follows the rhythms and seasons of the liturgical year from an Anabaptist-Mennonite perspective.

From Surviving to Thriving: The (Myth of) Balance (Comfort: Psalm 139:9-10)

If I take the wings of the morning and settle at the farthest limits of the sea,   even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me fast.”  -Psalm 139:9-10

When it comes to finding balance in life, there are a myriad of common, concrete images: spinning plates, juggling (glass) balls, the ever adjusting movement of a mobile or a jar with rocks and sand. Each image reminds us of our limits. But the idea of a balanced life, may have us pursuing a mirage. The failure to achieve this ever-moving-target of perfect balance can lead to a cascade of self-doubt, discouragement and defeat. 

Perhaps a better frame is that of rhythm. Life naturally has ebbs and flows based on life-stage, family considerations, and work commitments. At times, there is much about our daily responsibilities that is beyond our control to change. As you reflect on the stressors you are facing, consider what rhythms of joy, rest or refreshment are present. How can you move with the opportunities and invitations this rhythm offers? 

You are a God of transformation and change; in you hope springs eternal. May I embrace the rhythms of grace available to me even in the face of my own weariness and limitations. Amen.


We hope this brings you some comfort and joy! You can spread the joy by liking, commenting and sharing this post with others. Be sure to subscribe and never miss a post.


Some Comfort and Joy was developed as a devotional resource that follows the rhythms and seasons of the liturgical year from an Anabaptist-Mennonite perspective.

From Surviving to Thriving: The Joy of Slowing Down

“It’s hard to relax when there’s always more to do!” I moaned to my husband as I toted another load of laundry to the washline, pointing out the weeds that had sprung up in the flowerbed on the east side of the house. 

For many of us, there is much work that is never done. The many responsibilities of running a household are often things that must be done again and again: dishes, clearing, mowing, laundry…

Today, instead of focusing on efficiency, take time to do something slowly. Perhaps it’s hanging laundry on the line instead of throwing it into the dryer, washing the breakfast dishes by hand instead of loading the dishwasher, taking a leisurely walk outside instead of running on the treadmill or taking the scenic route home from the grocery store. 

God of time and task, may I trust that there is enough time to do the things that matter most. Amen. 


We hope this brings you some comfort and joy! You can spread the joy by liking, commenting and sharing this post with others. Be sure to subscribe and never miss a post.


Some Comfort and Joy was developed as a devotional resource that follows the rhythms and seasons of the liturgical year from an Anabaptist-Mennonite perspective.