When I'm in a new phase of life, the first thing I turn to is a good book. When I was learning how to write, I read books on the craft of writing. When I wanted to be published, I read books about queries and contracts. When I wanted to learn more about relationships, I read every relationship book I could get my hands on. Are you the same way? Whether you're in a new relationship and looking for time-tested advice, or just love reading about ... Read More about The Relationship Books I Read (and loved!)
When I was a young girl, I loved reading love stories. Elisabeth Elliot’s Quest for Love, Eric and Leslie Ludy’s When God Writes Your Love Story, and many others filled my bookshelves. One would think that I would grow out of such a thing, but alas I never did. I still enjoy hearing a good love story. There are some great ones in my circle. The two doctors who met and married in medical school, and how the day he was going to propose they ... Read More about How to Read Love Stories
I was born in 1992. I wasn't a teenager until 2005, which means I narrowly missed the biggest "purity" era. I never attended a conference surrounding the topic of abstinence, made a vow in front of my youth group or was awarded a piece of jewelry symbolic of my commitment. My parents did things the old fashioned way by giving me my own Bible, praying for me, exemplifying a faithful marriage, and discouraging promiscuous behavior as I grew ... Read More about your purity is not your dowry
My three best friends are wildly different from each other. They have different lifestyles and personalities. Their relationships with me are built on unique-to-us experiences. There is one major thing that all of them have in common, though. None of them are afraid of silence. One will sit on the couch and listen to music with me, sometimes for hours at a time, without us saying a word to each other. One of them will wear her headset and ... Read More about The Beauty of Silence
You can see the problems in your friend's relationship, and maybe you want to scream "Break up with him already!" But what do you do? I was on the opposite side of this question once, when a close friend spoke honestly to me about the red flags she could see in a long-term-going-nowhere relationship. It took courage for her to share her concerns, because such discussion don't usually result in a response of, "Yeah… you're right." Here are a few ... Read More about When You Need to Say, “Break Up With Him!”
The beginning of a relationship is full of excitement, nerves, fear, joy, hope and opinions. Lots of opinions. The input of friends and family during this time is crucial, valuable and life-giving. But it can also be totally overwhelming! None of us want to be the giver or receiver of input that doesn't build up during this fragile, vulnerable time. I've been on both sides, and found that whether you are in a new relationship ... Read More about When Others Write Your Love Story
As a single, I read dozens of books on relationships. But I quickly discovered that there were two types of books on love and marriage: The books that told all the depressing divorce stories, brought up every negative aspect of the differences between men and women, and then invariably told you how to have a new relationship by Friday. The books that told the truth about our human sin and selfishness, but pointed to the Savior ... Read More about Books That Have Changed My Marriage
When I signed my book contract, I stepped across the threshold from unpublished to author. It was a transition in several different aspects, none more so than this: I didn't know how to tell people. So I kept it a secret from Facebook for a week and stuttered through the story face-to-face with all my favorite in-real-life people. The hardest people to tell? My writer friends who have not yet signed a contract. I didn't want to sadden them, ... Read More about 5 Ways to Tell Your Single Sisters Your Love Story
Dear Daughter, If you're reading this letter, it means that you've filled my heart and soul with joy; it means that you exist. If you're reading this letter, it means that God has blessed me with the privileged responsibility of raising you, cherishing you, training you, preparing you. If you're reading this letter, it means that you're facing your first relationship, it probably means that you're tearfully facing your first conflict in that ... Read More about Is he worth marrying?
Since I didn't date much before I met my husband (and by much, I mean barely at all), that particular season in our relationship has always been a favorite. Dating was fun. The thrill of getting to know someone can be intoxicating. I'm not a naturally talkative person, but I loved staying up late discussing our families, our college experiences, and our faith. I also loved the doing of dating. We had season passes to Disneyland, so if we ... Read More about The power of complicated.
He's not a tall, handsome, rich prince. He's just a man. He's a good man. A hard worker. Sometimes short-tempered, though always humble. But he sure isn't a prince. Now that I've been married seven years, I can look back and realize how easy it would have been for me to marry someone else. I'm a pretty level-headed girl most of the time, but when it came to men it was easy for me to confuse what seemed good with what was. The real ... Read More about Why You Shouldn’t Be Looking For A Prince
The moment you have a ring on your finger (and sometimes long before!), the entire world becomes sage with advice for you and your sweetie. Some of it is best let in one ear and out the other. Some of it you should laugh over. Some of it is borderline TMI! (Hey, it happens. Smile and move on. Or take notes. Because sometimes "TMI" is exactly what we need to know but didn't know who to ask.) But if you are a bride-to-be--or even if ... Read More about The Best Advice About Love & Marriage