“Ooh, I love your dress!”

“I love rainy days.”

“Don’t you just love her hair?”

“I loved your blog post!”

“Chocolate is my love language.”

Do you ever get tired of it? This word that is used and somewhat abused, over and over and over again in pretty much any and every context imaginable?

I can hardly point any fingers. I’m guilty as charged. I use the word “love” way. too. much.

So much that it loses its meaning? Its depth? Its sincerity?

The media has certainly succeeded in diminishing its meaning, if our own daily language usage hasn’t.

We can hardly turn on the TV without being bombarded by so-called love stories and scenes.

The truth is, love sells.

But at what cost?

In spite of its profuse appearances in a multitude of forms in our language, online and in the media, the vast majority of these expressions will pass away.

Only one will remain, for “the grass withers and the flowers fade, but the Word of God stands forever” (Isaiah 40:8).

Do you want to know what love is?


Love {Day 7}



This is Day 7 of 31 Days of Five Minute Free Writes. Check out the other posts in this series by clicking here.


The time has arrived!

31 Days logo - 2015Starting tomorrow, we’re kicking off the 2015 edition of 31 Days of Five Minute Free Writes!

I invite all of you to join us — and I’ll even provide prompts to make it easier!

If you’re game, you can link up your own landing page or contents page starting at 8pm EST TODAY, September 30th.

Click HERE for the link-up!

Also, don’t forget to head over to the Write 31 Days website tomorrow, October 1st, at 8am EST to add your unique url to the master link-up there!

Here’s a sneak preview of the prompts we’ll be tackling this month:




AND … to add to the excitement, we’ve got brand new, limited edition Five Minute Friday tote bags for sale!


Limited offer!

Get your bag for only $15, this month only!

Bags will be on sale through October 31st, and will ship by November 30th.


FMF bags 1.2


To order, click the “Buy Now” button below:

I’m so excited to join you all in this month of flash writing. My hope is that our craft will improve, our love for writing will grow, our minds will be inspired, and our writing habits will be solidified into a lasting practice for good.

And to all of the readers out there who are following along, we appreciate you! Thank you for bearing with us during this month of daily posts — we pray that the words that fill your screen will be an encouragement and a blessing to you.

Happy writing, everyone!


How is it possible that we’ve already reached the end of September? Unbelievable! I don’t know about you, but I feel like I blinked and nearly missed it.

Regardless of how quickly time is passing by, I’m so happy that you’ve given up some of your precious time to be here with us this week!

If you’re new to Five Minute Friday, you can catch the scoop right over here.

And if you feel like doing something wild and crazy with a whole bunch of other wild and crazy bloggers, how about taking on the Write 31 Days Challenge?

We’re kicking off October 1st, and the Five Minute Friday crew has added a special twist to the challenge: namely, to write each of your 31 Days posts in five minutes or less!

You in?

To make things a little less chaotic, we’ve even put together a list of prompts for you to use, if you so desire:



Find more details here, then come back at 8pm EST on September 30th to link up a landing page or contents page if you plan to play along!


Our prompt for this week is:





Doubt is a slippery fellow.

One step on his foot, and he’ll grab your whole leg and pull you down so fast you won’t even know what hit you.

Peter will tell you all about it. He’d testify that as soon as you take your eyes off the Truth, doubt takes over and you’ll sink into it.

And before you know it, you’re flailing around, gasping and treading water, “blown and tossed about by the wind.

We need the Rock.


Lead me to the rock


We desperately need the Rock of Truth, the One who keeps our foot from slipping, because we’re oh, so prone to slip.

So we cry out like Peter, and if we reach for the right One, He holds out His hand and sets our feet upon solid ground. The unchanging One, in whom there are no shadows of turning.

When you feel your foot slipping, friend, stand firm. Don’t go down that route. Grab hold of the Truth hidden in your heart, that you might not slip and slide right into despair.

For doubt is a slippery fellow.


“On Christ the Solid Rock I stand; all other ground is sinking sand.”


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My first attempt at driving alone from my flat in the suburbs to my workplace in the city bowl proved to be a memorable occasion.  I proudly managed to get on and off the highway successfully and at the correct on ramps and exits.

The only trouble came as I waited at a four-way stop.  On an incline.

Let’s just say hill starts are not my forte.

I was in a queue of several cars waiting to turn at the stop sign ahead, and I stalled my car.  Couldn’t get it started again for the life of me.  Most likely flooded the engine while trying.

Eventually other cars started honking (excuse me, ‘hooting,’ as is the proper term in S’Africa), because they couldn’t get past me.  Then a kind man got out of his vehicle to try to help me, but I’d been warned not to open my window to strangers as a safety precaution, so I only cracked the window a sliver so I could hear what he was telling me to do.

Except that he wasn’t speaking English.

Finally an English speaking person stopped, and together both men pushed my car (with me still in it), through the intersection.  They tried desperately to explain to me how to start my car while it was rolling down the hill, but I never got it right.  Instead, I coasted down the decline, lurching my own body forward in an effort to boost momentum.  My workplace was in sight.

I got to the end of the hill and was still rolling enough in neutral to turn into the parking lot of my work, only for the car to come to a standstill in the middle of the entrance.  The parking lot was on an incline, and my little Jetta had run out of oomph.



31 Days - 2014 logoThis is Day 5 of 31 Days of Life in South Africa, where each post is written in five minutes.  For more five-minute posts from other writers, check out the link-up over here.

It’s 31 Days time! 

This is my second time linking up with The Nester, who dreamed up this writing challenge for bloggers everywhere to write 31 posts in the 31 days of October.

Last year I wrote Defining Home in 31 Days.

This year I’ll be writing on 31 Days of Life in South Africa, but this time, with a twist.

As the new host of Lisa-Jo Baker’s Five-Minute Friday, I’ve issued a challenge to anyone who chooses to accept it — namely, to write 31 Days of blog posts, five minutes at a time.

It’s like 31 Days Meets Five-Minute Friday.

People who are playing along are linking up at the bottom of this page over here.  Click over to check out some fabulous themes and writing!  If you’re joining the challenge and haven’t linked up yet, you can do so over here!

Also, be sure to enter your e-mail address in the sidebar on the right to get posts delivered directly to your inbox as soon as they go live.  There will be some giveaways scattered throughout the month that you won’t want to miss!

And now, without further ado, let the 31 Days of Five Minute Free-Writes begin!


31 Days - 2014 logo


Set your timers, and … GO.


It was the night before my departure, and four friends came over to bid me farewell.  In typical college student style, we talked all manner of nonsense and laughed till we ran out of breath and basically did everything but pack my bags.  As the sky darkened, the friends gradually dwindled and dispersed until only one remained.  So the two of us did what any rational young adults would do on the eve of an overseas move.

We made waffles.

All out.

Mashed strawberries, chocolate syrup and whipped cream.

Eventually as the clock neared the midnight hour I turned to face the organized chaos that awaited.  Spread all over the carpet of my bedroom floor were belongings strewn about as if in a silent auction, each bidding for a space in the two empty suitcases waiting on the bed.


Move - 31 Days - Day 1
Photo Credit: Magic Madzik, Flickr Creative Commons, edited

My friend leaned against the doorframe and observed as I mulled over which items would win the coveted space in the suitcase and get to see the world.

As I filtered through mementos and photos, clothes and shoes, deciding which would make the final cut, reality sunk in.

In a matter of hours, I was moving to Africa. 



“The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” ~ Deuteronomy 31:8


This is Day 1 of the series, 31 Days of Life in South Africa. To see more posts in this series, click here.