Special Treat: What I Learn from my Daughter about Heaven and the Theology of Butter

Ashley in ThoughtI’m over at Amy Julia Becker’s Christianity Today blog discussing one of the things I continue to learn from my daughter.

My daughter loves condiments. She squeezes massive amounts of ketchup on her fries or grits—yes, grits! She pours mountains of syrup on her pancakes. Yet, none of those indulgences compare to her love of butter. She puts butter on potatoes and bread. When I give her what I believe is a reasonable amount, she often asks for more. She makes deals with her dad for extra butter. She sneaks butter behind my back. The girl loves butter!

One day our family gathered for an afternoon meal and once again, my daughter pulled out her knife and loaded her bread with butter. “Stop! That’s enough,” I said. She smiled and licked more butter from her spoon. I continued, “Too much butter stops your heart! You’ll die an early death, and leave mommy and daddy here all sad.” No drama there! The words were meant to shock her and cause her to consider the consequences of her choice, since I am raising a curious and thoughtful little one.

In addition to being smart and quite charming, my daughter is also strong-willed and quick on her feet. She has a response for almost everything, so before I could get all of the words, “Too much butter stops your heart! You’ll die an early death…” out of my mouth, she was already preparing her comeback. She popped a morsel of her butter-filled bread in her mouth and said, “Well, why don’t we all eat more butter so we can die and go to heaven together?” For a moment, I was speechless.

Continue reading here.

Also check out Amy’s new Zondervan book release titled, Small Talk: Learning from my Children about What Matters Most.


Coffee Talk: A Child Shall Lead Them

Kirk Franklin jammin' in his Hammer Pants
Kirk Franklin jammin’ in his Hammer Pants

This past May, I had the opportunity to check an item off my bucket list. For her birthday, I took my daughter to see Kirk Franklin in concert. Hands down, Kirk Franklin is one my favorite gospel artists, and he is actually in competition with Michael Jackson to become my daughter’s favorite artist as well. We attended the amusement park with friends, hung out all day, played in the water, and then waited for the concert to start. The concert also featured Tamela Mann (another one of my favorites) and Lecrae (whom I heard for the first time). We were jamming, singin, lifting our hands, and having a great time!

Before Kirk Franklin took the stage, one of the event sponsors, Compassion International had a gentleman give his testimony and a video about the work they do to share the gospel and provide basic needs to children living in extreme poverty. I sat there, said a few “Amens,” and shook my head up and down as the gentleman spoke. Then the moment of decision came. The speaker asked if anyone who is willing to sponsor a child would raise their hand so a representative can bring them a sponsor passage. Before I blinked my eyes, my daughter’s hand was up in the air.

Continue reading “Coffee Talk: A Child Shall Lead Them”

Justice in Education for All

Megan Westra
Megan Westra

I’m so thankful that Megan Westra has agreed to write about a topic in which we both care deeply about. Thanks for this contribution, Megan!:

Evangelical Christians often champion the ‘sanctity of life.’ This phrase typically refers only to abortion. Many Evangelicals argue that a culture that allows legal abortion does not truly value human life. While many Evangelicals have fought against abortion for decades, we have yet to see a movement that expands the idea of ‘sanctity of life’ to fighting for the ‘quality of life.’ If we truly believe that all life is sacred, then the logical conclusion is that once a life is born we continue to fight for that life to have equal opportunities to live up to its potential.* – Nicole Baker Fulgham

When I think about the disparities in the education system, I don’t just think about how some schools succeed and others fail, I think about the ways that our perceptions skew which schools are capable of success or failure. How the way we perceive certain students or certain neighborhoods determines whether or not we ascribe value and sacredness to their lives.

Continue reading “Justice in Education for All”