Category Archives: helping others

When You Don’t Want to Smile

            March 12, 1963–Cumberland River Flood, Harlan County, Kentucky  I left for the airport in plenty of time, but I wasn’t looking forward to this trip. After I had accepted the speaking assignment, the town … Continue reading

Posted in God's presence, helping others, humor, prayer | Leave a comment

Trusting in Another’s Help

As a friend lamented her estranged son’s absence, I remembered a time when I had protected someone else’s child. I promised to pray for the same help for my friend’s son. Years ago I was in Jerusalem’s Old City, marveling at the … Continue reading

Posted in children, helping others, Jerusalem, prayer, rescue | Leave a comment

This Is Not the Life I Asked For

I’m a transplanted Kentucky woman who was raised to take care of a husband and children, be a good cook and a gracious hostess. In addition to those accomplishments, I earned a master’s degree and taught at a Detroit suburb … Continue reading

Posted in appreciation, encouragement, God's presence, grief, helping others, single mothers, single parenting, single-parent families, widows | Leave a comment

Thank you, Doris Schumacher

Has someone ever changed your life with just a few words? Years ago, that happened to me. In fact, a three-minute conversation gave me the vision to get an education. The summer before I entered seventh grade, I met Doris … Continue reading

Posted in children, confidence, education, encouragement, helping others, mentors, perseverance, self-esteem, self-talk | Leave a comment

A Good Lesson on a Grumpy Morning

Ever notice how the best lessons often come from unexpected sources? I learned that when I met a women who appeared to offer only an empty seat in her breakfast booth. That New York day, my mirror had revealed more … Continue reading

Posted in aging, appreciation, confidence, encouragement, helping others, self-talk, widows | 2 Comments

The Warmest Gift

As a veteran widow, I thought weepy moments during church services were behind me. But during the recent Christmas program, I wiped my eyes often. It was time to draw upon the lesson I learned years ago. The first Christmas … Continue reading

Posted in grief, helping others, single mothers, widows | 6 Comments

Ready If Needed

Do you ever wonder how much help you should offer those who go from crisis to crisis? After all, Galatians 6:2 says, “Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.” Does that mean … Continue reading

Posted in encouragement, helping others, rescue | Leave a comment

Just Spare Parts

What do you think about folks who decide to be major organ donors upon their death? I’m not asking about just cornea transplants or even specifying a major organ such as the heart. I’m talking about bequeathing the entire body–organs, … Continue reading

Posted in cornea transplant, helping others, organ donor | 2 Comments

Weathering the Storms

The subtitle of my blog today should be “Thoughts from an Appalachian Woman” instead of “Encouragement.” Because as I write this, I’m watching the Weather Channel’s tracking of Hurricane Sandy and the anticipated journey up the East Coast. Government officials … Continue reading


Posted in courage, God's presence, helping others, storms, tornado | 2 Comments