Thursday, December 30, 2010

Out of Control Can Be OK!

As you kick off 2011, you might be hoping to get a few more things under control this year! Every New Year’s Day, I plan to organize the basement, where right now the empty jelly jars are mixed up with the food magazines I'll read “someday”. There’s also that big box of stuff my husband marked, “Have no clue!” When life comes at us, especially with out of control circumstances like relationship or job or health crises, we want a box like that, to pitch stuff somewhere until we figure out even a tiny a piece of it. We can feel guilty thinking we’re out of control. But how much do we control, really?

Certainly, we can and must take care of ourselves and our responsibilities, but what about when we just can’t? What about when it’s way over our heads and keeps coming? This week you’ll meet a family whose “out of control” health matters have hit three generations with some form of cancer. Their responses to what could be devastating are worth hearing again and again until they sink in and become part of your own perspective. In overwhelming situations, they were not overwhelmed. They articulate beautifully that no matter how out of control your circumstance is, you can trust God to be in control. I don’t know where you’ll get a better peek at how “out of control” can be ok, than right here on Woman to Woman® this week!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Christmas: Perfect Timing Paul L. Maier

“Timing is everything” or so they say. Think about the timing of the first Christmas. What if Christ had been born 500 years earlier? What if He had been born last year? Would history have played out differently? And what does Christ’s birth have to do with you, your history and, most of all, your future? Everything, says historian and theologian Dr. Paul L. Maier, my guest this week. Though Dr. Maier’s credentials put him in the intellectual stratosphere, he is engaging, down to earth, and as excited as a kid surveying presents under the tree when it comes to uncovering facts on the life of Jesus Christ. He’ll have you sitting on the edge of your seat, as he highlights God’s impeccable sense of timing when it came to that first Christmas!

Dr. Maier is the Russell H. Seibert Professor of Ancient History at Western Michigan University. He is perhaps best known as a widely published author of both scholarly and popular works. His novels include Pontius Pilate and The Flames of Rome. He also penned a theological thriller that became a number-one national bestseller in religious fiction: A Skeleton in God’s Closet. A sequel, More Than a Skeleton, came out in 2003. An additional follow-up work is slated for 2011. There are seven million Maier books now in print in 17 languages.

Christmas is God keeping His promise to not only rescue every person from eternal damnation, but to assure each individual of a personal relationship with Himself through Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit. “But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law” (Galatians 4:4).

Join us during this very special week as we glance over our shoulders and consider why, historically, Christ was born when He was and where He was -- and what that means for us today. It’s your time … in God’s time … to tune in for a Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

All year long we go with the ups and downs of life, and then comes Christmas. Suddenly, there’s a change in the air, nearly everywhere. We see wonder on a child’s face and celebrate with friends and family. Eyes mist over Christmases past. It’s almost as if we can taste, smell and hear our way back through the years. And the music, well, what can you say but that its charms are unrivaled. “Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life” -- Berthold Auerbach

Some of us wonder what difference can one person make, anyway? And then, when you get to know people who make amazing differences in the world, you’re surprised at how genuine and unassuming they are. They usually have one thing in common: a passion for what they do. So it is with guitarist, vocalist and songwriter, Peter Mayer. He has been steadily building his own following around the country by stepping outside his front-and-center role as one of Jimmy Buffett's Coral Reefers to front his own band: the Peter Mayer Group. (He’s been on board with Jimmy Buffett for 21 sold-out tours and four gold albums as his lead guitarist.) He’s appeared on The Tonight Show with both Johnny Carson and Jay Leno, The Late Show with David Letterman, and others. He’s shared the stage with Don Henley, Dave Matthews, Paul Simon, Steven Stills, and Al Di Meola.

Mayer’s pastor, Ron Gluesenkamp, brought him along on a week’s retreat to Camp Arcadia this summer to weave song into his teaching. A powerful combination, these two! I invited Mayer and his wife, Patricia, to record on the spot, when I heard his story and his music. “Sing Joy!” is one of my favorites, and you’ll hear him sing this on the show.

Mayer knows how to sing joy, and he says you can, too! He’s one of those fresh voices who articulates the Christian faith so beautifully it stops you in your tracks. His life, his family and his music translate the peace of the Lord, which passes all understanding! And yet he’s right in the middle of everyday struggles and deadlines and life’s normal ups and downs. Tune in for this tune up to help you get ready to celebrate Christmas!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Ditch the Joneses/Cathi Brese Doebler

About five years ago I started noticing highly trained women in fields like medicine, business and marketing begin to cut back on their hours. Others arranged for flex time, working long shifts a few days to have other days off. Why? They wanted to spend more time with their families. It’s a bonus for many women to create their own formula for getting the job done -- on their terms. And it’s happening more frequently.

Double incomes are nice when it comes to paying bills, savings, and acquiring a few “extras” in life, but if you’re among the 87 percent of moms who say they’d love to stay home with their kids if they could afford to, please listen to this. Business coach and mom, Cathi Doebler, says it’s possible to find a balance that benefits everyone. She wants to help you spend more time with your kids and still pull in some family income. Doebler is a corporate consultant and trainer whose graduate studies in corporate communication put her on a professional track before her kids came along. After working in the human resources field for 15 years, she wrote Ditch The Joneses. It’s about balancing career and family.

Doebler’s recommendations are as much about managing your money as about gleaning the rewards of participating in the life of the child God has loaned you, even as He guides and blesses that process. Part of the secret to letting go of a mentality that feels compelled to keep up with the Joneses is to follow Colossians 3:2 -- “Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.” It’s a perspective thing, God gives us children and He fully intends to provide for and protect them through us. How will He do that if we ignore Him to follow the world’s pestering nag that we must have this and do that to live up to other people’s expectations? You’ll hear good information and a compelling argument to figure out how to be more present in your child’s life, without exhausting yourself outside the home.