• inspiring quote

    stop quitting

    Monday, February 2, 2015

    We all have the tendency to be quitters. We quit when things get hard, quit when we don’t feel like it, quit when there’s opposition, and quit because it’s Tuesday. But why do we quit? Sometimes it’s because we allow people’s words to make us feel like we don’t have what it takes. Like we’re […]

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  • woman in mirror

    big thighs, blue dresses, and self-love

    Tuesday, September 9, 2014

    Under the bright dressing-room lights at Target, I try on countless outfits. I am seven months pregnant. My body looks different now with new curves and indentions and a belly that swells each day. “I am really pregnant” I think and put on long blue dress, hoping it won’t look as bad as the others. I turn […]

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  • girl with a map

    What do you really want?

    Tuesday, July 29, 2014

    What do you really want? It is a husband? A job? A group of friends? A healthy baby? A certain life path? It’s a simple question, but one I think we avoid asking because we’re afraid of speaking aloud the answer. Because when we don’t want anything, then we can’t get our hopes up, which in […]

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  • Real Men Don't Text

    Real Men Don’t Text Book Club

    Wednesday, November 6, 2013

    I’ve received several emails from people saying how great Real Men Don’t Text is to talk through as a group. One group even invited me to join them for their last study. How fun! If you are in a book club, at a college, in a Bible study, a youth leader, a mom in a […]

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  • man giving flowers

    Forgiveness Won’t Fix Your Toxic Relationship

    Monday, November 4, 2013

    I recently had coffee with a victim of an emotionally abusive relationship. Every time she was ready to leave him after an outburst, he would return the next day and apologize profusely, sometimes with flowers or big displays of affection, begging her for forgiveness. After her somewhat unemotional description of his violent behavior, she asked […]

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  • couple on a bench

    16 Things Every Woman Should Know How to Say to a Man

    Monday, October 21, 2013

    The worst thing a woman can be in a relationship? Silent. But the art of expressing ourselves in living words, not typed ones, proves increasingly challenging. Here are 16 things I, like many of you, wish I learned to say to a man right as I came of age instead of a decade too late. […]

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  • Texting

    Are You Wearing Text Goggles?

    Wednesday, October 16, 2013

    As a millennial, I understand the appeal of the text message. It’s easy, convenient, non-threatening, and can be ignored. I have texted guys to suggest a hang out when I hadn’t heard from them in a while; I have received tweets, texts, and emails from men for last-minute ‘dates’ that never seemed to work out […]

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  • Bride and bridesmaid

    When God gives her a husband and you’re still single

    Wednesday, October 9, 2013

    Her email landed in my inbox just after 2am. “How could God give her a husband and not me?  I’ve gone home alone a million times when she went home with a guy. I’ve waited and saved myself for my husband and she hasn’t. She’s cleaned up her act recently but she’s only spent 6 […]

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  • sexy selfie

    A Letter to Sexy-Instagram Posters

    Wednesday, September 11, 2013

      (This letter is in response to this controversial letter to a teenage girl from a mom who blocks sexy-posters her from her sons’ social media feeds. Dear Sexy-Instagram Poster, I see you. That feels like a good place to start. I see how you long to be beautiful, to be told you are beautiful. […]

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  • © 1978 ABC

    Men: This is How You Ask Her Out

    Tuesday, September 3, 2013

    Real Men Don’t Text is officially available today everywhere books are sold! Michael wrote this post for the men out there who want to date differently, but don’t know where to start.  Spoiler alert: it will start with a plan and a phone call. When I was in high school and college, the easiest (read: […]

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Travel Stories Prodigal Magazine
Jun
25

Moving Abroad, Chicken Feet, and Lifelong Friendships

Today, I am part of a blog tour for Prodigal Magazine called Travel Stories. If you are visiting my blog for the first time, welcome! I do hope you enjoy your time here and stay awhile. For my regular readers, you might recognize my story of moving to China. I stepped off the plane, my head […]

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Rainstorm
Jun
21

Grace Like Rain

Can I share for a second? Today is my birthday and birthdays for me always bring reflection over the past year. I am so thankful for each of you. I cannot express how grateful I feel for all of your emails, comments, and just knowing you are reading my blog means the world. I started […]

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walking down the road
Jun
20

Boys to Men | A Guest Post

Today, we have a guest post from one of my readers. Heather Hill is an engineering graduate student at the University of Texas in Austin.  Working in a male-dominated world has taught her to truly cherish the relationships she has with her girlfriends. I’m particularly excited about this post because Heather isn’t a Christian but is on a journey to find purpose–and can’t help […]

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Girl sitting on bed
Jun
14

A Letter to a High School Girl

Dear High School Girl, You don’t know me, but I know you. It was nine years ago that I too grappled with the decisions you are facing: Boys. Sex. How far is too far? Should God get a say in what you do with your body? Will the decisions you make about boys and sex […]

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Sarah Mae
Jun
11

Healing after Abortion | A Guest Post from Sarah Mae

Today’s post is from Sarah Mae. I read her story of abortion and contacted her because (as you will see) it is one of those stories that I just had to share you. I cry every time I get to the end. God always always redeems–no matter what we’ve done or where we’ve been. Sarah […]

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Michael and Ruthie
Jun
5

Laughter Makes The Heart Grow Fonder

With one year of marriage under our belts, Michael and I are far from pros. We are still stumbling our way towards deeper love and by no means have all the answers. However, we do know if there is anything that draws us closer and feeds our soul it is laughter. We celebrated our one year wedding […]

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wedding
Jun
4

Our Joy is Only Beginning

One year ago today, I woke up next to my sister Rachel and spent the entire day at the beauty salon preparing for the moment I’d been waiting for: walking down the aisle towards my groom. The man I had waited for, prayed for, lost hope for, and finally found. This morning, I woke up […]

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antique books
May
31

What’s Your Story, Morning Glory?

Wherever I go, I observe others and imagine their stories. I guess being an avid blogger and being in the business of story makes you attuned to the emotions of others. Just tonight, I was in line at the grocery store and a man weighing well over 500 pounds was in front of me. Buying […]

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Woman Painting
May
28

Beautiful Portraits of Myself

Last Tuesday, I had not one, not two, but three hard conversations. They were all unrelated, but I would have been foolish to think it was by a mere coincidence. The details are unimportant, but what is important is I was confronted by friends about various ways I had hurt them. I crawled in bed […]

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Library-5796
May
23

“Running Bear” | An Addition to Our Family

Today’s post is from my husband, Michael. The Dean Family has adopted a proud new member! Michael’s dream truck (1974 F350) came on the market and after we heard the back story–we knew it was meant to be. It’s loud, hard to park, & gas guzzling–everything an old truck should be. But it gives us […]

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