I write essays, humor, op-eds, reviews, and lifestyle articles on faith, relationships, parenting, education, writing & publishing, pop culture, work/calling, refugees, and chronic illness/health.
The Prevalence of Pain by Dena Dyer
Today, I picked up my youngest son Jax after leaving my non-profit marketing job for the day. The sky was grey, like my mood, filled with bulbous clouds threatening a downpour. I could smell the rain and all I wanted to do was sit and read a book–not drive around town. Texas storms can come on quickly and unleash quite the fury of hail, wind, and rain, after all. However, Jax had called me at my office earlier to ask if we could “get a drink.”
He doesn’t drive yet, and as I’d found with his o...
Depression-Sufferers in Your Church Wish You Knew These 3 Things
Depression-sufferers often feel shame and loneliness in the Church, because those who haven't struggled with the disease don't always understand those of us who have. However, they long for community, prayer, and the ministry of presence. Here are three things they (we) want you to know.
5 Ways to Find Hope This Holiday Season
Have you been hit with unexpected sadness recently? Grief and depression are no respecters of persons, and often the busy holiday season magnifies them. During November and December 2021, my father and father-in-law died within twelve days of one another, and I find myself dreading Christmas. Recently, I visited with my counselor about coping strategies. I hope they help you (or someone you love), too:
Reach out. Call a counselor, doctor, pastor, or spiritual adviser…and be honest about how h...
How Can the Church Better Serve those Suffering from Chronic Illness?
As a senior in college, I was involved in a traffic accident that eventually left me with neck issues and chronic pain. A couple of years later, I became severely ill with mononucleosis, which I never fully recovered from. Within half a decade, I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s, a thyroid condition which is hard to treat. Since then, I’ve also been saddled with fibromyalgia (autoimmune diseases often piggyback on one another). I have good and bad days and feel grateful for a supportive family,...
The Burden and Blessing of The Strong -Willed Child
Sobbing, I sat on the floor against 4-year-old Jordan’s closed bedroom door. “Let me out!” he screamed, hitting and kicking the door so hard it shook my body. “You’re a bad mommy!”
How did I get here? I asked myself. Other desperate thoughts darted through my mind: God, help me. What if I’m scarring my child for life? No one understands.
Like many first-time moms, before my oldest son was born, I had a clear image of my future. I’d pictured a happy, intelligent child who would love and obey m...
What if Loving Your Neighbor Means Even Women In Ministry?
It’s challenging being a woman in today’s culture because of social media, the fast pace of life, and the mental load we carry. When you add ministry to the mix, things level up. Women who minister to others often feel lonely, misunderstood, and unsupported. Sometimes, we feel as if we have a huge target on our backs.
Move your career forward in minutes a day with these 10 steps
Writing, re-writing, researching, and pitching take time, yet time is one of our most guarded commodities. Most writers don’t have the luxury of uninterrupted hours at the keyboard. In fact, all the freelancers I know have day jobs, families, or both. I’m one of them: I have two sons and began pursuing publication before both of them were born. However, in the midst of daily life and various pay-the-bills jobs, I managed to net several book contracts and hundreds of magazine credits.
Homeless Like Me
An encounter with a woman struggling with homelessness brought home to me how much alike we were.
Dream Team: 5 Questions to Ask Before You Co-Author
Thinking about co-authoring a book? Ask these five questions first.
Love at First Fight: Taking a Spiritual View of Conflict in Marriage
Devotions — Proverbs 31 Ministries Devotions
Don’t Waste the Waiting
Anna’s faithful love for the Savior convicts and challenges me. It breaks apart my excuses for not worshipping more (protests of “I’m too old/too tired/too weak/too busy” seem silly when I hold them up to her example) and points me towards a life of persistent, faithful surrender. Instead of waiting out her last years with worry, Anna stayed connected to God and His people. She was fruitful, and God multiplied her act of obedience.
How to Cope with Barren Seasons
Scripture Focus: Luke 1.5-7
5 In the time of Herod king of Judea there was a priest named Zechariah, who belonged to the priestly division of Abijah; his wife Elizabeth was also a descendant of Aaron. 6 Both of them were righteous in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commands and decrees blamelessly. 7 But they were childless because Elizabeth was not able to conceive, and they were both very old.
From John: This month, on Tuesdays, we welcome guest writer, Dena Dyer. Dena graciously...
Six Practical Tips for Working at Home
Envisioned work-from-home scenario: While soft music plays, the employee types on her ergonomic keyboard, glancing up at the full-size monitor in her designer-decorated office. As aromatic soup simmers in the crockpot on the kitchen counter, she enjoys several productive, uninterrupted hours.
Real-life work-from-home scenario: The employee sits at her mini laptop at the kitchen table, getting more and more frustrated at the dog barking incessantly next door. A child (or two) appears every few...
8 Ways to Replace Life Hurts with Hope
Are you in a place of hurt and in need of God’s healing? Here are eight ways to find hope, when life hurts, based on Wounded Women of the Bible by Dena Dyer and Tina Samples....