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Today’s links include a few coronavirus-related posts (because it’s impossible to avoid the topic these days). But I’ve also included some links that are a reflection of other topics that have been front of mind for me lately: parenting, how we spend our time, the way we show and receive love. . . . If any of these topics speaks to you, you’ll find great encouragement (and possibly some conviction) in these reads.

Stop, Look, and Listen, by Cara Eileen

“It hit me that stop, look, and listen would be a good phrase for my time with God. First, I need to stop. Some days feel go, go, go the entire day so I squeeze in my prayers and my Bible reading time in increments that sometimes get entirely too small. I need to stop, really stop, and concentrate. “

10 Things to Do with Your Kids at Home, by Maryanne Jacobson

“One potential positive to come from this is families can turn inward. For the teen totally into his friends, being home provides an opportunity to connect to his parents. The kid who’s been troubled at school may open up about what’s going on.This time together reminds us of what is important, and it gives us the ability to take a step back in our lives and reflect. Once we move past this, children and adolescents are more likely to appreciate what they took for granted like seeing friends at school every day.”

Free Resources for You and Your Kids During Quarantine 2020, by Erin Schrader

“While it’s a scary time, I 100% believe that if we can stay positive and focus on using this time to learn a new craft, make a new recipe, spend extra time snuggling with your kiddos, it can be a time that grows us, relaxes us and reconnects with us with the ones who mean the most.”

Talking to Kids About Coronavirus, by Katherine Willis Pershey

“It is weird but true. At our church we are always talking about how Jesus taught us to love our neighbors. And right now, the best way for all of us to love our neighbors—the best way to be the helpers—is to stay home.”

Parents, It’s Your Job to Get in the Way of Cell Phones, by Chris Cochran

“Kids do not deserve privacy. You own their devices, not them. You should be having the hard conversations with them about life, relationships, their bodies, their futures, etc. It is your responsibility to provide social and emotional support, help build coping skills, and monitor their activities. And stop actively working against schools and start working with us.”

A Call to Simplicity, by Kelly Minter

“Paring down gives you eyes to see what’s important, it reminds you of the meaningful things you possess that you didn’t know you possessed because they were being obscured by lesser belongings, and it creates space for you to best utilize the essentials. What I didn’t realize is that this was a process the Lord wanted to do in my soul as well—paring down to the people and work He’s called me to so I can serve Him more effectively.”

This Is Love, by Renee Swope

“We are loved. We don’t have to wait for God to show it. He already has. He promised He’d always be there for us, and He is — present and listening, certain and caring.”

How I’m Using My Phone Less, by Valerie Woerner

“Would I rather achieve a really cool goal this year or know what’s happening with every person on the planet that I don’t know? It was easy to be ok with the time I was on my phone when there wasn’t something huge competing with it but now that there is, my phone loses. “

The Thing Our Kids Really Need, by Leslie Kvasnicka

“I’m guilty of wanting to create an unending reel of magical experiences for my kids. The bigger the better. But when I think about the things that captivated my heart when I was their age, I realize I’m way overdoing it. There are so many things I bend over backwards and stress myself out about that frankly, my kids just don’t really need.”

I’ll Sit With You, by Alia Joy

“She doesn’t rush into the pauses, she sits in the hush and lets me collect my pain, ease it out slowly like a prayer. She asks good questions but doesn’t expect easy answers. She’s gentle and slow, a presence willing to sit in the dark cold night to show she’s with me.”

Cultivating a Life Worth Imitating, by Twyla Franz

“Too often I think that to look more Christ-like, I need to work harder to be better. I endeavor to extend selfless patience to my kids, generously give of my time, volunteer to not let anybody down, attend all the special church events and conferences. . . and wonder why the harder I try, the emptier I feel. When I slow down, I realize that I have been trying to recreate the outcome of proximity to Jesus without actually drawing close.”

Have you read or written anything share-worthy lately? I’d be honored if you would drop a link in the comments!

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