Building Our Homes Like a Lego Master

Building Our Homes Like a Lego Master

My son loves building with Legos. His room looks like a Lego museum – and often like a construction zone, with tiny bricks strewn all over the floor, just waiting for an unsuspecting parent to walk in and step on them.

At the end of this school year, he completed a report on our home state of Georgia. For a final project, he chose to redesign our capitol building – constructing it the way he would choose, if he were the architect drafting the plans.

Guess what he chose as his building material? You got it – Lego bricks.

For several days, he poured his free time into creating a capitol building which would make the people of Georgia proud. He selected only gray and white bricks. He carefully placed an abundance of windows. He even printed our state flag on cardstock, attaching it to a tiny pole and flying it atop the capitol building.

It was quite the masterpiece.

At the beginning, before constructing any of the walls or installing a single window, he carefully laid a foundation which would support his large building. He knew this first step was essential to creating a strong structure.

We parents are a lot like Lego craftspeople. Every day we have countless opportunities to build our homes and strengthen the people who live within our walls. Let’s lay a strong foundation through faith that’s authentic, Scripture that’s central, and a mission that’s celebrated.

Faith that’s Authentic

“And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him.” Hebrews 11:6 (NIV)

Every one of us falls short. That’s why Jesus came – to pay for the sins of those He loves and to fulfill God’s Law on our behalf. Let’s celebrate this in daily life by:

  • Modeling the gospel for our kids when we fall short, expressing that Jesus has forgiven us and asking if they will, too.
  • Forgiving our kids when they hurt us and reminding them that Jesus offers forgiveness, too.
  • Pointing to Christ as our hope for daily transformation.

Scripture that’s Central

“These commands that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.” Deuteronomy 6:6-7 (NIV)

God’s Word reveals His heart and shows us how we can live in relationship with Him. Let’s bring Scripture into our everyday conversations by:

  • Telling our kids what God has been teaching us through our own times of Bible study and prayer.
  • Discussing what the Bible says about situations we encounter as a family.
  • Memorize Bible verses as a family. ( is a great resource for finding verses topically.)

A Mission that’s Celebrated

“We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making His appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.” 2 Corinthians 5:20 (NIV)

As Christians, we’re part of a worldwide mission. Through us, God calls a lost world into relationship with Him. Let’s prepare our kids to share this gospel message by:

  • Giving them heroes to emulate through reading missionary stories together. (We love the Trailblazer Books and Christian Heroes: Then & Now.)
  • Praying for missionaries and staying up to date on how God is working in their ministry.
  • Dreaming with your kids about how God could use them someday, while pointing out ways He can work through them right now.

This work of building our homes is an investment in eternity. As we live out authentic faith, teach our kids God’s Word, and cast a vision for joining in His work, we’re laying a strong foundation upon which they can build their lives.

Twenty Questions with a Stranger

Twenty Questions with a Stranger

Have you ever played Twenty Questions with a stranger?

Last fall, a new friend on Instagram invited me to participate in an interview — twenty questions about life and faith and my relationship with God. It took me until Christmastime to return my answers — they weren’t quick and easy! A lot of other interviewees were in line ahead of me, but this week the interview went live.

Questions ranged from “What’s on your nightstand right now?” to “What are your top three tips for staying spiritually strong?”

Here’s my favorite question, along with my answer:

“What do you want people to learn about God when they look at you?

“When people see my life and hear my story, I hope the relentless love of God comes to the forefront in dazzling splendor. I pray they sense the still, small voice of God whispering His delight over them and graciously drawing them closer to His heart.”

If you’re curious about the rest of the interview, I’d love for you to hop over to Modern Witnesses

Lessons from a People Mover

Lessons from a People Mover

It’s funny what kids remember.

“Mama, remember the time when we sat next to the elevator and ate a cookie?” My son smiled as he repeated the story.


He must have been four or five when we took that afternoon outing to the mall. We started out at the play place, then headed to the food court for a candy-filled cookie, sitting next to the glassed-in elevator as we ate.

My little man stared in awe. I marveled that a people-mover could be so fascinating. He studied it ever so carefully, trying to figure out exactly how it worked. He wanted to ride it a few times, but just watching it seemed to thrill him the most.

Fast forward several years, and he still recalls that day with affection.

Such a little thing – a simple date which cost all of five dollars, a mom who didn’t understand his fascination with elevators but loved watching her son learn, and a memory he still seems to treasure.

It’s funny what kids remember…

Of course, the big stuff builds memories, too – like our unexpected cross-country drive one Christmas when the Atlanta airport shut down and we still wanted to spend the holidays with my family. Or the planned-out birthday parties that leave parents exhausted but children feeling loved.

Those things are important, but so are the everyday moments we invest in our kids. We cultivate an atmosphere of love and security by doing the little things.

Here are a few thoughts to keep in mind:

  • Our day-to-day ministry helps shape their view of God.

Cooking meals and keeping a home isn’t the least bit glamorous. But when we meet their everyday needs, we paint the picture of a God who provides. Kids are free to thrive when they know we’re looking out for them.

  • Our day-to-day ministry helps shape their view of themselves.

We affirm their God-given worth and value when we prioritize time with them, setting aside our agendas (and our devices) to show our kids they matter more. We validate their opinions and feelings when we ask questions and listen to their hearts.

  • Our day-to-day ministry helps shape their future.

I’m often surprised at what my kids remember (like elevator-watching at the mall). They see more than we realize. Our consistent love helps them grow into the men and women God designed them to be.

But let’s be real. We parents do undeniably more than our kids could possibly notice. Yet God sees. He “is not unjust; He will not forget your work and the love you have shown Him as you have helped His people and continue to help them” (Hebrews 6:10, NIV). As we serve our families, we serve Jesus. I’m so glad He provides His strength, wisdom, and grace to help us love them well.

Yes, it’s funny what kids remember. In the big stuff and in the small, we’re making memories, building relationships, and shaping our children’s hearts for eternity.


This Changes Everything

This Changes Everything

“Look! The virgin will conceive and bear a Son, and they will call Him Emmanuel, which means ‘God with us’” (Matt 1:23) NET.

Those three words astound me.

For thousands of years, God had been worshiped from afar. His holiness stood in stark contrast to mankind’s sin. A thick veil separated His earthly presence in the temple from those who approached Him.

Until Emmanuel.

His arrival changed everything.

The Eternal One stepped into time and wrapped Himself with humanity. The Creator became one of us. The King who controls armies, who sets up and tears down nations, that King made His first appearance in an unceremonious stable.

And such would be His life – a homeless Miracle Worker, a traveling Teacher, a King rejected by His own people.

He came not impress us, but to save us. Not to condemn us, but to restore friendship with God.*

He came to do what we could not do – to keep the Law of God, and die as if He hadn’t. To taste death for us, then render it powerless so we could be set free.

He came to tear the veil that separated a holy God from His people, and to make us holy, too.

This is Emmanuel – a God so in love with His people that He would walk among us, know our pains, experience our emotions, and die in our stead.

And He beckons us, even today as we celebrate His birth, to draw near to Him as well.

As we give and receive gifts this Christmas day, may we remember the greatest Gift of all time. And may we offer ourselves back as a gift to Him.

Merry Christmas!


This changes everything

* If you’re curious about how to begin a relationship with this Jesus, please check out In Case You’re Wondering.

Related Posts:

The Sunrise of Christmastime

The Wonder of Christmas

What’s Inside

Umbrella Ministry

Umbrella Ministry

by Meredith Mills @DazzledByTheSon

Don’t you just love rainy days?


rainy days

There’s nothing quite like curling up with a good book and a cup of tea on a dark and rainy day. So cozy and comfortable. Ahh…I love rainy days.

Unless I have to run errands. With three kids in tow. Of those rainy days, I am not a fan.

Yesterday, I had a list of several places to go in a short window of time. I was a bit uptight and stressed. So when it started raining on the way to Walmart, my heart sank. And of course, there are never close parking spaces on rainy days. Seriously, they should have designated parking places for moms with more than one tagalong.

We grabbed our single umbrella and climbed out of the car. Gathering my little people close, we walked toward the store.

“Do you need an umbrella?” I turned toward the voice to see an older woman standing beside the open door of her car. She had a pleasant expression on her face as she offered us a bright yellow umbrella.

“Oh, I think we’re fine,” I replied.

“Are you sure? I have a sort-of ‘umbrella ministry,’” she said with a smile.


rainy days

I returned the smile, not quite sure what to say. I’d never heard of an “umbrella ministry” before. While I hesitated, she walked over and handed us her yellow umbrella, then returned to her car. “God bless you,” she said warmly.

We thanked her, opened the umbrella and again walked toward the entrance.

This unusual encounter made quite an impression on my heart. Such a small act of kindness, yet so very thoughtful.

I bet the “umbrella ministry” is not included on a list of outreaches on any local church bulletins. She probably doesn’t consider herself to be a missionary. I wonder how many people even know of her ministry?

And yet this generous woman is a vital member of the Body of Christ, lovingly meeting needs in creative ways as God leads. She was a beautiful reminder to me of how “outside my box” God is.

He has important work to do through each of His own in advancing His kingdom. We’ve all been given various gifts and callings, as well as different opportunities in differing seasons. Sometimes our “ministry” will look just like what we’ve imagined. Other times it may seem small or insignificant.

But whatever we do in the name of Jesus is beautiful and meaningful and precious to God. As we walk close to Him, humbly following His lead, He lives out His heart through us.

How about you? Do you ever wonder if your life makes a difference, if God could possibly be pleased with how “daily” your life is?

Be faithful, my friend. Walk with Him. Listen to His voice. Do whatever He leads you to do – whether it seems significant or not.


in Jesus’ name

Has anyone ever ministered to you in an unexpected way? I’d love to hear!

Related Posts:

Redefining Success, Pt 1

Redefining Success, Pt 2

When I’m not Enough