Two weeks ago as our pastor preached he mentioned the difference of holding a book – not a kindle, not an i- fill in the blank, not a nook- a BOOK.
He was encouraging us to maximize the use of our paper Bibles. The treasure it is to read each word and tangibly feel the turn of a page.
Immediately as a self proclaimed book lover I realized – oh no -I’ve forsaken my former love.
Before the era of email and instagram, I had books. 
Before online blogging, there was the thrill of putting a pen to a page.
I have never been an I.T. girl in any way shape or form – thankfully I married a man who enjoys + gets all of that phew- but I have become hooked on technologically . I can easily say that weekly I spend hours scrolling.
Instagraming, Snapping, scrolling, scrolling,scrolling.
It’s embarrassing, I’m not proud of it,but it’s true, at least for now.
I used to get lost in a book, now I get lost in “oh my gracious did I just spend an hour scrolling”?
My mom used to call me a fish because of how I was always found in the water, but if I wasn’t in the water, she knew where to look next, with my nose in a book.
That I’m proud of, today she’d probably look for my phone. What a downgrade.
I want to be remembered as a do-er, a be-er, an adventurer, a lover, a laugher, a writer, a reader, a teacher, an includer, but NOT a scroller.
I once heard a quote that has become a favorite in it’s simplicity:
” if you don’t like something change it, if you don’t change it stop complaining”
I may be alone on this conquest to read more and scroll less, but even if just one person reading this can relate, it is for you I write.
I’m sure you’ve read other articles about societies attachment to social media & their phones, we all have haven’t we?
But my writing is meant to evoke change in the life of those who read it,& I too have learned about excessive phone uses impact on my psyche, eyes, quality of life, etc. but have continued scrolling away. ” yea we’re so attached to our phones it’s crazy ” and there I go scrolling away.
Until I decided I’ve had enough.
Until I heard the pastor preach and it made me miss holding books  and getting lost in its pages.
Until Greg suggested I get a public library card because “there’s no reason I should have a library card before you “.
There is a power to books , there’s a power in reading, there’s a therapy in slowing down and feeling time, that all people of different interests from different walks of life can say hold on five more minutes.
Truly as I was about to turn off the lights so Greg and I could fall asleep,  he said ” hold on five more minutes,it’s getting really good…I’ve missed reading I forgot how nice this is”.
Put down your i whatever, your kindle, your nook and pick up a book.
Substitute scrolling for pageturning .
Swap out that bible app, for reading the bible on your lap.
I implore you to reflect on your scrolling ways as I have – and mind you I enjoy taking pictures and Instagram as much as the next millennial – because hopefully you’ll be disgusted, annoyed,& embarrassed of the constant way your hand clutches your phone or i-whatever or electronic device  to say I’VE HAD ENOUGH.
Pause before yourself.
Pause before the Lord.
Pause before you pick up your phone to scroll, & just consider  
or I can shake things up for my brain and for my soul, enjoy a good book, and for more time today then yesterday DITCH THE SCROLL

635: Boston

Love covers a multitude of sins.
As a sister, daughter, niece, friend,cousin,  and especially a married woman you become very aware of your humanity.
How easy it is to hurt, to be dishonest, to be selfish, and so on.
But there’s something powerful about love. 
There’s something refreshing about living out that scripture and it’s definitely easier read than done.
Because sometimes we’re  entitled.
We’re entitled to our hurt, we’re entitled to our anger.
We are entitled too well this guy was a jerk to our family so we’re writing him off forever.
But you know so long as there’s this passage in the word of God, is as long as I’m going to practice it.
Love covers a multitude of sins.
Yes, you’re a human in this world, you’ve experienced hurt. We all have. 
 In the wise words of Rafiki  you can either learn from it or run from it.
Hurt is real.
Take time to hurt.
Take time to feel.
Don’t rush the healing.
But don’t prolong it either.
Hope is real.
Light is stronger 
Hope is stronger 
Love is strongest of them all
It covers a multitude of sins.
“People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered.  Forgive them anyway.
 If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives.  Be kind anyway.
 If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies.  Succeed anyway.
 If you are honest and sincere people may deceive you.  Be honest and sincere anyway.
What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight.  Create anyway.
 If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous.  Be happy anyway.
 The good you do today, will often be forgotten.  Do good anyway.
 Give the best you have, and it will never be enough.  Give your best anyway.
 In the final analysis, it is between you and God.  
It was never between you and them anyway.
-Mother Teresa
I’m writing this in reference to hard feelings big and small, whether it’s towards strangers or family members. 
Jesus died on the cross for them all.
Feel free to harbor hate towards others for the rest of your life, just know that that’s not between you and me. That’s not between you and that person, you’re going to have to take that to God.
If anyone’s been there or gets it He does.
Massive betrayal, abandonment, maltreatmeng, and suffering , check, check, check and check.
But in the same way that no sin is bigger then Christ’s love for you,
is the same way that no sin is bigger than    Christ’s call for you to forgive.
And not just forgive,cross your arms,stomp your feet,and say fine but only because Jesus said to.
 But instead because it is your delight to reciprocate the undeserved love you’ve received, to others that have sinned against you.
Don’t make people’s sins against you bigger then the act of Christ’s work on the cross.
” Love covers a multitude of sins”.

a month in the life: M A Y (631)

feeling : finally like Lancaster is home 

learning: to teach refugee’s English

practicing: being the kind of friend Jesus is.

mastering: the art of putting yourself out there in order to find community
“blaming” Suzy for her insistence on us diving in on plugging in

eating: Black Rasberry Icecream with chocolate chips

listening: to sermons, podcasts, & e-books on the road
playing:” how long will our plants make it ?” 
” do you think our garden will bloom, even if I don’t have a green thumb?”
finishing : applications
reading: more books, in the best way -> paper  & upping the amount I’m reading
* thank you Lancaster City’s Poppin’ Public Library*
(that on screen reading is cute, but nothing beats a tangible paper book in your hands
 and the feeling of flipping through each page)

watching : Netflix com meu marido

wearing : the armor of God, cause I gotta stop the nonsense of starting my days without  it 

working: on figuring out what’s next , 
because we weren’t created to just pay bills & die.
we’re meant to explore, to serve, to go, to love, TO LIVE…

walking: ,skipping, & jumping for joy because S P R I N G is in the air
 ( speaking of which so is pollen,resulting in Greg’s allergy induced asthma acting up at 3am
 so we had to run to the 24 hour pharmacy in the middle of the night,
 but P R A I S E   THE    L O R D for inhalers! )

traveling : into the woods for a camping weekend with old friends
desiring : to discover the best of Lancaster ;
nature trails,
ice-cream shops,
brunch spot’s,
celebrating:  Lady’s first year with us !
                                      Brendan’s Nyack College graduation.
Mothers Day.

“Do not merely listen to the word, 
Do what it says.” James 1:22