New YouTube video: 
JOY in the Journey 

My humble son has accused me in the past of wearing “mom goggles.”  Let’s be honest, he is an impressive young man and quality human being as attested to by many friends, family, colleagues, etc. So I know for a fact it isn’t just my biased “mom goggles” at work here. 

Also been guilty of wearing “beer [WINE] goggles” for a generous portion of my existence as well. Happy to report my #soberglow NOW as demonstrated in the YouTube video linked below. 

Pictured up top is me in my Speedo swimming goggles, which are my favorite kinds of goggles to sport! 

But none of those are the kind I want to share with you today. 

Today, I want you to hear about my husband’s compassionate, merciful Christ-centered goggles. 

Before I tell you more about that, however, I want to share two examples of male companions I spent some time socializing with after my divorce and before I met my now husband. 

The first one talked repeatedly about a previous lover’s particular body part that disgusted him which should have been a major red flag for me.

 But I ignored it, thinking I was somehow special, and the exception to his previous gaslighting practices. I was not the exception, but rather left in his wake like all the others before me. I am grateful for this heart-breaking experience. I learned some valuable life lessons that caused some of the most spiritual growth I have had to date. And because of that previous hurt, I can appreciate my husband now so much more! 

The second encounter with another young male friend left a bit of an emotional mark; the day he found it necessary to point out the fact that I had missed a spot when shaving my legs.

 I was mortified by that fact, and more importantly by that comment. I wanted to crawl into a deep pit and hide for the rest of the afternoon, since I wasn’t in a position to correct this flaw in that very moment. 

Today I continue to be perfectly imperfect physically, mentally, and emotionally in many ways. On this day especially, I’ve been mentally tearing myself down with negative self-talk about my less than perfect physical traits. 

Here’s the point of all this rambling…

My husband Niel and I have created a safe place— a sanctuary, if you will, where I can feel comfortable in my own skin, wearing sober goggles, flawed, and even a bit insecure on some days like today more than others.

  He loves me like Christ loves His Bride, the church, with my multiple sins and blemishes. He makes me feel beautiful and helps me to flip the script of negative self talk with positive praise and acceptance. And I am forever grateful for the way he looks at me and for the way he loves me.

 Digital Scrapbooking 


At the risk of presenting myself as a hypocrite, 
I too have succumbed to wanting the financial success of the “side hustle” mentioned above: 

Yes, I continue to have dreams, goals, and ambition. Yes, I would love to experience time freedom and the flexibility to work from anywhere around this beautiful globe we call Earth. 

The difference now is that today I have PEACE. (Philippians 4) 

Today, I am content. Not content with the “status quo” per se… but content KNOWING that no amount of what this world has to offer will satisfy me long term… Only living water can satisfy me for eternity. 



This whole concept of “If ___________, then I will be happy” is a complete fallacy! 

No amount of stuff, success, sex, money, food, etc will provide lasting happiness.  NO. 
 Lasting happiness, also known as JOY comes only from an intimate personal relationship with one’s CREATOR. It comes from receiving a grace we don’t deserve and we can’t earn on our own merit. It comes from receiving the good and perfect gifts that come from Him. 
James 1:17 


Today’s hike pictured here along with our weekly couples devotional…