What Moves You?

A man’s mind plans his way (as he journeys through life), But the Lord directs his steps and establishes them. Proverbs 16:9 AMP

The sound of an alarm?

The scent of hot coffee brewing?

The cry of a baby?

The ring of your phone?

Tickets to the big game, the once in a lifetime event?

The message that old friends are in the area and could they stop by for a quick visit?

The endorphin release that hits at the end of a good workout?

The threat of rain?

The threat of missing a flight?

The threat of plans crashing into your office building on a quiet morning in September?

What moves you?

Yesterday, our son and his girlfriend participated in the Scott Merirtt Memorial Half Marathon. It was a perfect excuse for Tom and I to head five hours north for the weekend to cheer them on. It had been three months since Jonah had moved to Iowa to begin grad school life with a new apartment, new school, new job. I had missed his infamous bear hugs and was eager for a visit. When the opportunity came for this trip.. we moved.

What moves you?

As a recreational runner I thoroughly enjoy and appreciate cheering on those that chose to push themselves in a formal race situation. The crowd is always diverse. All ages, all fitness levels, all variety of attire. Some run with friends and some run alone. Some have trained extensively and some have been moved last minute to give this running thing a try. Some are motivated to achieve their P.R. (personal record) and some are determined to simply finish the race. The group I observed before the Scott Merritt Memorial Half Marathon was similar to many I had seen before. The participants looked eager and focused. The crowd, full of family and friends and lots of dogs were friendly and encouraging. There is just something special about a crew that willingly chooses to get up at 5:30 on a Saturday morning to either challenge their bodies as runners or anxiously position themselves on what hey hope will be the best viewing locations along the route.

What moves you?

We learned from the chatty gal at the creamer the evening after the race that a Reserve Police Officer is one that is called in to work special events. They are not on the regular pay role but ready to jump in when more police staff are needed. I don’t know how Scott Merritt gave his life, but I do know he lost it in his line of duty as a Reserve Police Officer. A man moved to serve when he could, as a help to the police for of his local community. His memory is honored every year as hundreds rise early on a Saturday morning to push their bodies for time or accomplishment or the promise of chocolate mile in the event that bears his name. I had no knowledge of Scott Merritt before Sept.10,2022 but clearly his life made an impact on many.

What moves you?

I awake early this morning. Feeling rested after a good nights sleep in our cute little air bnb, the words for this blog came racing to my mind. I tip toed through the living room, brewed a cup of coffee and sat myself down in this area I’m pretty sure was created just for early morning writers like myself. As I waited for the caffeine to kick in, I glanced at the date in the upper right hand corner of my computer screen.

Sept. 11

What moves you?

22 years ago.


22 quick years ago, on this day, Americans were shocked that an evil to what we now refer to as “9/11” could happen on our soil. We had been sheltered from the realities that had always been part of other countries normals. The loss of so many lives in the attack on the Twin Towers in New York City and the Pentagon moved us all.

Moved us to pray.

Moved us to worship. ( I know your church pews were as packed as ours)

Moved us to the reality that we did not have as much control on our lives as we thought we did.

What moves you?

Minutes before the race my sons girlfriend suggested we pray. Which we did. My son then shared a verse he had read off of his bible app that morning…

“A man’s mind plans his way ( as he journeys through life), But the Lord directs his steps and establishes them.” Proverbs 16:9.

Each runner in the Scott Merritt Memorial race had a plan – to start and to finish. Some had studied the race route and some were depending on the race volunteers stationed along the path. Some through they knew the path and were surprised and thankful when someone pointed them in the right direction.

Each human having reason to enter the Twin Towers or the Pentagon on 9/11 had a plan – to start their day and to finish. Some made daily trips to these buildings and others were just visiting for the day. They thought they knew the way in and out of the buildings and were surprised and thankful when a Police officer or Fire Fighter pointed them in the right direction.

What moves you?

I don’t know if everyone finished the half marathon. We left shortly after our two gulped down their chocolate mild and the skies turned dark with rain. We fell like there were still a few runners left out on the course. Maybe injury or fatigue had slowed them down or caused them to stop. They had planned their day but it may have had a disappointing finish.

We all know that everyone that went to the Twin Towers and the Pentagon did not finish the day they way they planned. A tragic ending to what may have felt like a very normal start.

What moves you?

This past week a wise mentor reminded me that the safest place to live is in the center of God’s will. She reminded me that each day I should seek to see where God is working in the moment and join him. She reminded me that whenI seek His plans and trust the direction of my steps to Him I would life a life fulfilled. She encouraged me to listen close to the voice that promises to encourage, comfort and when needed…


We are not promised earthly success when we receive our identity as Christ followers. We are not promised that our plans will succeed. We are not promised PR’s or perfect finishes or lives free of pain and suffering. But we are promised a guide through it all. One that moves us to our starting lines, points us in the right direction on our paths and when our earthly race is complete will carry us to our heavenly home. Never leaving or forsaking. Always loving, always forgiving.

What moves you?

What moves me?

As I take my last sip of now cold coffee and head into my day, I ask myself that question? I think through my plans for worship with my kids, potluck lunch after church and a 5 hour drive home. I think of my week ahead filled with more work and travel. I think about my family and our futures. I think of my community and my volunteer responsibilities. It feels full. It feels good.

I think of all these things and I lay them at my Lord’s fee.


Guide my steps. Direct my paths. Move me,

Move me,

Move me…. to be in step with you.

Much Love,


Moved to run!


These words I speak to you are not incidental additions to your life, homeowner improvements to your standard of living. They are foundational words, words to build a life on. If you work these words into your life, you are like a smart carpenter who built his house on a solid rock. Rain poured down, the river flooded, a tornado hit – but nothing moved that house. It was fixed to the rock. But if you just use my words in Bible studies and don’t work them into your life, you are like a stupid carpenter who built his house on the sandy beach. When a storm rolled in and the waves came up, it collapsed like a house of cards. Matthew 7:24-27 The Message

“Everything O.K. over there? I see the flags on your lawn?”

A kind inquiry from my next door neighbor to which I answered,


Tom and I had so much fun transforming three rooms in our home this summer. Moving furniture, painting, hanging new curtains, purchasing a few more throw pillows (can you ever have enough throw pillows?). I absolutely love the transformation that gave me a new home office and two guest rooms ready with clean sheets, scented candles and goodie baskets for anyone that needs a place to lay their head when passing through our town. Each time I walk by one of the newly renovated rooms I give a contented sigh, just so happy with the results. The work took a couple of hundred dollars and a couple of weeks of time – a fun summer project for my teacher husband that has time to kill in the month of July.

Recently as I was leaving the upstairs guest room I decided to close the door. I never close the door – there is no need to. But I did, or at least I tried. The door which normally closed quietly without effort, stuck. I mean when the door hit the frame it required effort on my part to pull all the way shut.

Well, shoot.

It was at that moment that I looked above the door frame to a crack that had been growing across the ceiling. We had it looked at a few years ago when it was smaller and we were told everything was fine – the effects of normal settling of a home. But I was pretty sure that at this new, closer inspection that the crack was bigger and had a little tributary crack branching off of it.

In another few moments, as I allowed my brain to think through the summer months of our fun home improvements, I remembered the popping. The loud cracks we had heard several times that seemed to come from the attic. New sounds. Sounds that were brief and intermittent making them easy to dismiss when there were so many other fun things to focus on. Like new throw pillows.

Doors that are hard to close, cracks in the ceiling, loud pops in the attic. These are the factors that often point to one thing…

Foundation trouble.

We have learned that in our part of the world that our heavily clay soil does not respond well to draught. As it dries, it hardens and pulls away from the surface it is attached to. Our golf course and school soccer field are littered with large cracks in the ground. Our soccer coach told me that one year a student tripped on one of the cracks and broke his ankle. The effects are significant to say the least. As the soil as pulled away from the foundation of our home everything has shifted, everything is impacted and until we do something and do it quick, it is only going to get worse.

And buying another cute $25 throw pillow is not the answer.

Well shoot.

It feels ironic that in preparation for our foundation fix that will cost us not hundreds, but thousands of dollars , that has required numerous visits from electricians, and gas company technicians to mark our yard with flags and spray painted markers indicating buried lines, one of the messages left smack in front of our home is…

Our grass clearly shows the signs of our dry summer



Our foundation is not OK. Our Foundation Recovery Rep tells us we caught the problem early, that the price tag could be much higher. The work will be internal in a part of our basement that is unfinished so no need for outside landscaping or inside carpet to be torn up. If we would have waited the internal damage would have been much more significant, the cost doubled or even tripled. None of this is a surprise. I have several friends and neighbors that have already walked this road to which each time I have said “Whew, glad its not me.”

Have you ever done that before?

Witnessed someone else’s ‘foundation trouble’ and said, ‘glad it’s not me?’ and continued purchasing throw pillows overlooking the issues that may be happening right under your nose,

with your own foundation?

I have.

Gosh it is easy to judge and critique other peoples stuff. You know the stuff that would never happen to you, your children, your job, your marriage. The stuff talked about when meeting friends on an afternoon walk or put on the weekly bible study prayer list. The stuff that feels inconceivable and unbearable and you don’t know how anyone could live through the clean up…

Until it’s yours.

Until a season of draught reveals the truth of your foundation.

Until words you thought you’d never hear spoken about your life… are.

Health diagnosis.

Relationship changes.

Et cetera.

As I stood in my living room listening to the diagnosis of our foundation from the kind, straight shooting home technician I felt a sense of peace. It has been said that clarity is kindness. Now that we know the truth of our foundation situation we can begin the steps of solidifying and strengthening the very base that everything rests upon. It feels hard and it feels good.

As I clean out my storage area in preparation for our renovation this week my mind wanders to other places my foundation has been tested – in my personal and professional life. Have I been counting on cute throw pillow solutions to carry me through or have I spent time strengthening the one foundation that holds the promise of never letting me down? In Matthew Chapter 7 Jesus speaks clearly about the importance of building a life with his words, his truth. “These words I speak to you are not incidental additions to your life, homeowner improvements to your standard of living. They are foundational words, words to build a life on.” He is clear that his blueprint for life building is the one factor that will determine if a life storm will make you stronger or knock you down like a “house of cards.”

Today I ask you the questions my neighbor asked me,

“Everything O.K. over there?”

Are their cracks and pops and sticky doors in your relationships, your work, your finances, your anything that you’ve been ignoring? Consider this an invitation to pay attention and listen close. It is only when the problem is diagnosed and the truth of the situation is clear that healing and rebuilding can begin.

Jesus – Our foundation. Our Savior. Our friend. He is the master carpenter, he has everything you need to start your own home improvement project, today. The revealing of our weakness shines a light on the power of his strength. The clarity of our own fragility forces our eyes to the solid ground on which Jesus invites us to build our lives.

Trust Him.

Lean on Him.

Believe Him.

Build on Him.



Much love,