America’s Funniest Home Videos

Is America’s Funniest Home videos still being filmed?  If so, I should have had a body cam these last two weeks and I would for sure win some money.  I had a fall Thursday that resembled the fall I had with Brad a week ago.  Regardless of how it happened it left me on my back in my front yard but this time the scooter was involved and it fell too.  Ask my sister about it:)

I feel fairly certain that our family is already a perfect candidate for reality t.v.  I mean you can’t make up the stuff that happens around here & then you throw in the stories of running an addiction ministry and it would be riveting television.  If you know any t.v. execs, send them our way.

Family updates – We made it through the chaos of Maycember.  If you have not seen the Holderness family video about Maycember (the month that is as busy as December but without the lights) go wach it now, it is spot on and so funny!

Lawson still has a BB pellet in his hand & we see the doctor this week to determine next steps.  He runs hard and plays hard all day so he is probably the most scarred up 14 year old you know.  He gets lots of boo boos and combine that with his sensitive skin and his incessant need to pick at it and you get lots of scars.  He currently is enjoying a big magnolia tree down the street that has kind of become his summer home.  He has been known to frighten an unsuspecting runner or two.  Riding his bike is his favoite past time & keeping us on our toes comes in a close second.  He finished his Jujutsu class and I am not sure he will go back because at 14 he is so big that he would have to join the adult class.  Football is up next for him.

Bella is such a gift.  She seems like our reward – the most normal one in the bunch:) She has finished dance and Pre Comp swimming.  She starts the Summer League of Swim next week and looks forward to competing.  She has found what she loves and it is so fun to watch her to go!  She keeps us all pretty grounded and always speaks truth to everybody.  Need to know how you really look in an outfit?  Come see BG.

My foot is healing and I see the foot doctor this Thursday.  I have gotten pretty good with my scooter & much to Brad’s delight I have become much more independent over this last week.  We have been at each other’s throats a little (alot) through this process but we communicate pretty well so we are surviving.  We have survived worse but this little glimpse into old age has thrown us a bit and left us saying Jesus, take the wheel:)

The ministry is good & we will hopefully have some BIG news to share about it really soon!  God continues to blow our minds in the way he provides and always does immeasurably more!  When you pray, please remember our residents who are fighting a good but hard fight & pray for our leadership over this sacred gift of ministry.  In other ministry news, one of our ministry vehicles (a van) was stolen from the Cross Roads house Wednesday night!  The van is a loss but there were lots of tools inside too.  We laughed when the cop told us it would probably be recovered but there would be no telling what kind of shape it would be in.  Not sure we would know the difference because it was not in pristine shape to begin with but it would be great to get it back.  It is gold and has a cross roads sticker on the back so if you see it, pull it over and make a citizens arrest please:)

Tomorrow we wrap up an incredible series at church called “This is Us” and for my next post I want to share some of the truths from each speaker which included me, Brad and several other friends.  It has been such a good series and we are excited to be a part of the wrap up tomorrow!  You can visit Central City Church’s FB page or their youtube channel to see all of the messages.

I told you in my last post that I would be sharing the things that God is teaching me during my down time.  It has only been two weeks but so much has changed.  I can’t hop in the car and run an errand or go work out so I have learned to rest.  I have taken naps, propped my feet up, & read alot.  Those are not things I normally do when I am running at a break neck pace.  God intended rest for all of us – even He rested.  After creating the world, he took a day of rest not because He needed it but because He knew that we would so He was teaching by example.  If you find yourselves with no margin in your schedule and no time to rest then make a change, work that out so you can rest too.  Depending on your stage of life like if you have still have small kids, it probably won’t look like a nap for you but it may look like a Saturday with zero plans so you just stay in and refuel.  Maybe you travel for work and you have to go because that is your bread and butter but you can go to bed early in a hotel and find a little extra rest.  Get creative and find some ways to get the rest your body,  mind, and soul need.  You will be glad you did!

Thanks for meeting me here and letting me share.  Hope you all have the best summer – I will turn 40 this summer so I feel like that will be a whole nother’ post!

Love and light to you!


The view from my couch

Hey everybody!!! It has been so long since I have blogged.  I have been working hard at Cross Roads and been working hard on my Master’s degree.  But now,  I have found myself with a little extra time on my hands so I am looking forward to writing again.  It looks like I will be spending more time than ever on my couch.  If you have any must watch Netflix shows, hit me up:)

I had an accident last Friday and I fully believe that the Lord was looking down at me saying “Jodi, if you are not going to slow down on your own, I am gonna slow you way down”  I know there is a purpose in this and that He has some work for me to do and some lessons to learn during my recovery.  If you know me or if you have read this blog at all then you know I go about 190 miles per minute all the time.  My days start before 5 am and each day is usually filled to the rim.  May is always busy for everyone with year end school activities, mother’s day, memorial day, etc. and on top of that BOTH my kids were born in May.

We celebrated Bella’s 11th Birthday last Tuesday and she and I had plans to take a girls trip to finish off her birthday week.  We love to give experiences when we can so this was no exception.  Bella had Honors Day Friday morning & the plan was for us to head out right after.  It had been a busy week but we were excited and ready to go!

Side note:  all last week the right side of my right foot was tender – the part that runs from my pinky toe to my heel but it was not painful and didn’t keep me from working out or doing any usual activity.  It was just tender.  So, now it is Friday morning and we are settled in Trojan Hall for Bella’s last elementary Honors Day.  She is smart, witty,  and mature beyond her years.  It is always a joy to watch her walk across the stage to receive awards recognizing her hard work.  The program ended & it was chaos with everybody trying to go one direction towards the stage to get their kid.  I had plans to walk out the back and come in through the side entrance.  I was wearing a dress and some of my favorite OTBT wedges that Brad had given me for my birthday a couple of years ago.  As I was walking out in the crowd a littel girl darted in front of me and I had to catch myself to keep from falling over her and when I did my foot sort of rolled over in my shoe.  I didn’t fall and it wasn’t dramatic but I knew something was wrong – I immediatley could not put weight on my right foot and I felt nauseated from the pain.  I knew I needed to get to the car before I got sick all over everyone in the hallway so I asked Brad for the keys and began limping to the car – it wasn’t dramatic so he did not know I was hurt or feeling sick and he had to go find Bella.

As I walked through the crowd, I felt like I was in a movie and everything was sort of  moving in slow motion.  I felt like I was about to throw up or pass out or both because the pain was so intense.  A parent saw me limping and asked if I was okay.  I said “no, I hurt my foot and I feel like I am going to be sick” and with that I collapsed in the parking lot.  I was only out for seconds, I think the concrete jolted me back to conciousness.  I had on a dress so if you were in that parking lot on that day and saw my behind – my deepest apologies to you!  The parent and her husband were so kind and they helped me up and got me to the curb to sit and collect myself.  Meanwhile, Brad gets to the car and I am obviously not there.  The friends that were helping me found Brad and told him I was hurt.  (Thank you, Phelicia & Ethan, you were a God send that day!)

Brad and BG walked over and there I was, sitting on the curb, sobbing.  I was emotional over so many things – I was in pain plus it was Bella’s last honors day and I got zero pics of her, her friends or teachers because of my foot,  I had fallen and embarrassed myself, I knew it was not good and that our weekend plans would be cancelled.  I had ruined honors day and my girl’s birthday trip.  Her little face was so sad.  She was worried about me but also upset about our trip.  She was trying to be gracious but she had been so excited about it all and instead we were headed to Ortho Georgia.  I do just want to pause there though and say how thankful I am in to live in a town with outstanding medical care.  I think it is easy to take that for granted and I am always reminded of that when I end up in Navicent or Ortho Georgia and hear all the people talking about where they are from.  Some drive for hours to get the world class care that is right in back yard.  If you live here, count that as one of your blessings.

Back to the story,  Ortho Ga gave me speedy service and they were very kind.  They confirmed that I have a Jones fracture.  They said they are common and painful.  Likely,  I already had a stress fracture (that is why my foot was tender all week) and when I rolled it in my shoe that finished me off.  It requires a hard cast for 6 weeks and then I will either need surgery or graduate to a boot.  As I sat there taking all that in, a 20 year old kid walks in to cast me up.  He is a boy and remember –  I am wearing a dress.  It was a hi-low dress so it was short in the front and long in the back (kind of like a mullett).  I scoot to the end of the table and obviously have to spread my legs a little so he can wrap the casting material around.  I made a joke about it being a bad day to have on a dress.  Then my hubby says “let me help you both out” & he grabs the long end of my dress and pulls it up between my legs like a diaper.  We all laughed and that took care of our problem:)

Brad and I experincing a new season and if I am honest (which I always am) we are S-T-R-U-G–G-L-I-N-G.  I mean we have experienced hard things but neither of us has been immobile and in need of so much assistance.  I bet in his head he is repeating ‘in sickness AND in health.”  So that day we had a good laugh as he wheeled me out in my fresh new cast and I told him that I needed to go to the bathroom.  It was a feat getting us both in there with the wheelchair then me getting myself on the toilet.  New beginnings:)

I can go ahead and guess that the Lord wants me to learn some patience during this setback, he wants me to let go of everything being in place around my home & learn some flexability.  If you know me then you know that I move fast and I am constantly on the go – even when I am at home – I am constantly doing something, I am cleaning, picking up and straightening up.  I am a little neurotic about it.  It is not easy to pick up and clean up when I can’t walk and both hands are on my scooter to steer me around the house.  I have literally asked my kids and Brad to pick up pieces of dust that I see on the floor.  How awful am I?  It really drives me crazy though.  They are doing such a good job despite my bad attitude over the weekend.  I just felt so trapped and like they were moving 1,000 steps too slow for me.  I told them I was going to need to hire some help.  We had a come to Jesus meeting and they have forgiven me:) You know Brad made us talk it all out.

Some of you saw online that I got my cast on Friday and by Monday, I needed a new one.  We bought a shower sleeve for my cast and I succesfully stood and took a one legged shower Saturday night.  On Sunday night, I felt like I wanted to soak so Brad got my bath ready, added soaking salts and helped me get in.  I don’t ever “sit” for long so I am not much of a soaker and in less than five minutes, I was ready to get out.  I was hot.  I called for Brad & he took a minute longer than I thought he should so I decided to get myself up which I can do but I had to roll over to do it and when I did, the top of my leg sleeve moved, allowing the water in.  So yesterday, I was back at Ortho GA getting a new cast all because of my impatience.  Lesson learned.  (I also learned a lesson from last Friday and wore shorts yesterday for my new cast – my cast guy was equally proud)

So, in the grand scheme of things, this is not a big deal & it could be so much worse but this is my reality right now and even though it could be worse, it doesn’t make this any easier.  Everything has changed.  I work out hard 3-5 times per week & now I can’t.  I love keeping a tidy home and taking care of my family inside these walls and now I can’t.  I need to drive and now I can’t.  I need a lot of help to do most anything and that is not easy for a fiercely independent soul.  So, if I had to predict the lessons God is teaching me (I know He loves it when I do this) it would be patience & humility.  I know there is more to the story and I can’t wait to share it with you as it unfolds!  God has done immeasurably more in my life and He is not stopping now.  Stay tuned for all that is to come!

P.S. – I am not graceful at all and having just one working leg instead of two has proved to be a challenge.  I fall alot when I have two good legs so you can imagine my current situation.  I have fallen a few times in the house – once while using my crutches, another time off a chair and another time off my scooter but I’m fine.  Today took the cake though!  I wish we had caputred it on film but we just didn’t have the energy – we may try to recreate it for you tomorrow:))

So, I have been going out the front door if I have to get in the car to go anywhere because there are only two steps in the front as opposed  to five or six steps outside the back door.  Our drill is that I use my scooter (thank you Sally McCurry) to get out to the porch then Brad comes to the edge, I throw myself on his back and wrap my arms around his neck and he carries me to the car or to the front door depending on if we are coming or going.  I promise it is safer than it sounds – Brad is big strong.  Anyway, I got out today to support a Cross Roads event and then Brad took me to lunch.  We got home and I was pooped from my little outing (so sad) & I stepped out of the car and went to hoist myself on his back & I couldn’t get a good grip so he lowered his body so I could stand and readjust.  When I stood down on my left foot, I lost my balance (definitley gotta add yoga back in to my workout routine) & I was so concious of my right leg that I sucessfully held it up in the air so it didn’t hit but I fell straight back and landed on the grass so there I was lying face up on the ground – a shoe on one leg and a cast on the other & Brad was standing over me just shaking his head.  Then, I did the only thing I could in that situation – I burst out laughing & then he started laughing and we just embraced that moment for what it was – it was funny.  I was not hurt & eventually got in the house & asked Law to get the dust buster to get all the grass I was dragging in on my clothes.

People have been so good to us so thank you to our amazing friends who have been bringing food since Saturday and basically offering to do anything.  If you have a drivers license and a car, we will probably need you over the next six weeks:)  It takes a village.

Love and light to each of you!


Life Updates

So, we have a new dog.  Yes, that makes two for a self proclaimed non-pet person.  My friends and family know that  Finley (our yorkie) changed me.  When she arrived at Christmas in 2017, she stole all of our hearts.  She is basically human.  Then last week, we added Smokey to the family.  You know there is a story – we did not just randomly decide we needed another dog because we would never decide that.  We actually don’t need anything else to take care of,  our plates stay pretty full.  Anywho, Brad did some work for friends that own rental properties.  A couple of weeks ago, he was communicating with the property owner about the job and she apologized for her tardiness in returning his call and explained that the resident at that particular property had passed away.  Brad instantly remembered the elderly man and also rememberd his beautiful dog.  Brad immediately asked what happened to the dog.  The property owner said that a neighbor currently had him but she was not sure that he wanted to keep him long term and then she asked THE question.  She said to Brad “would you be interested?”  He replied that he would definitely want to get him if there were no other takers and the pound was the only option.

There were no other takers and so last Tuesday morning, Brad pulled up to our house with the dog.  He already had a name and is the most beautiful blue pit bull I have ever seen.  So there you have it, Brad is a softie and now we have a yorkie and a pit bull because you know, we are extreme people so having a giant dog and a really tiny dog is no biggie.  And the truth is that Smokey is the most gentle, well behaved dog I have ever encountered.  He has made us realize just how bad Finley really is:)  I have only heard him bark once and that is when he heard Fin barking and couldn’t see her and thought she was in trouble.  Smokey is super chill and loves Brad so much.  He is beginning to warm up to the rest of us too, even the loud little dog.

Last Tuesday night we went out to eat and as usual we crated Finley in her small crate that stays in Bella’s room and we got the big crate out of the attic that had belongd to our former dog.  We put Smokey in the crate and went to dinner.  We were gone for about two hours.  When we got home and stepped on the the front porch, Smokey met us at the door.  He got himself out of the crate and sauntered up to the front door like “what’s up?”  We are guessing he had never been crated and he was clearly saying to us “nobody puts Smokey in a crate.”  Just like nobody puts Baby in a corner, Smokey don’t go in a crate apparently.  Jesus take the wheel.

In other news, my sweet BG is getting baptized.  It was a sweet conversation and one I was so thankful to have because down here in the bible belt if your kid reaches age  10.5 or 11 and has not been baptized yet, you start worrying about their soul.  Anywho, she and I talked and then I kept forgetting to tell the Pastor.  Then two weeks ago, our Pastor stood on stage and announced that the next baptisim date would be March 10th.  I got chills all over my body because that date is already significant in our family.  March 10th is the same day Lawson got baptized six years ago while his Daddy was at No Longer Bound finding healing and freedom.  Such a God wink that my kids will share that date and such a stark contrast between the man my husband was then and the man he is now.  Thank you, Jesus for your goodness and faithfulness.

Speaking of Lawson, he is 13 soon to be 14 and fininshing up the second half of his seventh grade year.  Things look a little different than we would have ever imagined but there has been such clarity with each step we have taken forward in this new direction.  As of mid-December, Lawson left traditional school and in January we began a home school curriculum.  It has not been easy but it is better than our previous situation and we are confident that it is the best option for him during this season.  Law is happier than ever and we are adjusting to our new normal.  I encourage all the Mommas out there to be an advocate for your kid.  You know better than most what they need to thrive and when they are not receiving it, you have to act.  No one else loves them like you do and no one else is as concerned about their future as you  are, so do what you need to do.  Even if it is daunting and feels hard.  As Glennon Melton always says “we can do hard things.”

There is never a shortage of things going on in our house & sometimes it makes me tired but I know that God built me for every single thing I am going to face in this life and I know he handpicked me to be Lawson’s mom and to be Bella’s mom & He will continue to equip me all along the way even on the days when it feelsl like I am screwing up.  Grace.  It is a wonderful thing and if we all showed a little more towards one another,  I am  convinced that the world would be a different, kinder place.

Enjoy these pics of the crate demolition and the pic of dog #2.  Take care until next time and God bless!


21 Days

21 days is typically how long it takes to form a habit.  It is for that reason that every January and every August, our church participates in 21 Days of Prayer.  In each of these months, our bodies find themselves in re-set modes.  January is the start of a new year so it is like a clean slate, a fresh start.  August is the time of year when summer is over, kids are headed back to school and families are getting back into a steady routine.  My family has been doing this for the last three years & it is nothing short of amazing and this last time, was my best experience thus far.  Probably because I have never gone as fully in as I did in January.  In the past, I would typically fast from certain types of foods but if I am honest it probably had more to do with the weight loss benefit than getting closer to Jesus.  I also never made it a priority to attend or watch the morning prayer services in the past but this year I went online every single morning and watched and then on Saturdays when I could physically be there, I was there.  And this year instead of fasting food – I fasted social media.  It was hands down the best thing I have ever done.

I have never fasted anything until three years ago when this new church came to town.  I never heard much about it growing up as a Southern Baptist and if I had any thoughts on the matter, I probably thought it was a little weird.  My church (Central City Church) and my pastor’s church, Church of the Highlands provided so many resources about fasting, what it means and what the purpose is.  (The resources are online at if you are interested) One of my favorite authors, Mark Batterson has always said that he believes that God leans in a little closer when we fast.  I have learned that there really is something to this fasting.  See, God never moves or changes, He is always there but when we intentionally take some of the noise out of our really loud lives, we find that we can hear Him so much better.

God did some pretty cool things in my heart and in my life over this last 21 days. Not all of my prayers have been anwered and that is okay because that is not what it is all about.  God is not a vending machine that I use to get all I want but instead, I am trying to focus on surrendering, learning to be still (really hard for me) and just soak up His presence.  I want to keep going  with these prayer rituals and that is exactly the hope of the church, that after we experience  21 days that we will still be intentionally praying and seeking God on day 44 and day 365.  There are so many stories of God’s faithfulness during the 21 days & beyond.

I chose to fast from social media because I figure that often causes me the most distraction.  I have taken little breaks from social media in the past but this was my first hard core social media fast.  I mean I deleted the apps off my phone!  Gasp!  It felt a little crazy and it was weird not having it there & it also revealed how quick I am to go to social media when I have idle time – therfore, it made me realize how little time I have and how much time I often waste on these platforms.  I enjoy posting pictures and thoughts and I enjoy seeing your pictures of your adorable families and pets but there are so many things I didn’t miss.  I consider myself a fairly healthy social media user meaning I know it is all a highlight reel and other people’s posts don’t bother me or stick with me but there are some of you that constantly compare yourselves to all you see on social media and that is unhealthy for you & I don’t think that is the purpose of social media.  If you can’t get on social media and not compare and roll your eyes 184 times per minute, then you probably need a break too.

Here is the thing – (as I am learning every day in my Master’s program) we are all wired differently and Susie may be able to accomplish 122 tasks every day but Janie might only accomplish 2 tasks and then she needs a nap.  Both are okay.  Susie might be a size 2 swimsuit model and Janie might be a healthy size 10.  Both are okay.  Susie might be a Cross fitter and Janie might be a yogi.  Both are okay.  Susie might have a corporate job earning six figures and Janie might be a stay at home.  Both are okay.  The bottom line is we are all different and our creator intended it that way.  If you find yourself feeling down while scrolling social media, remember that other people’s post are not a reflection of you.  We can’t compare our insides to other people’s outsides.  The healthiest way to approach social media is just knowing that it is what it is and if we decide to take it all with a grain of salt, it won’t get the best of us and it will be enjoyable.  I think the social media wizard creators meant for it to be enjoyable so if instead of enjoying it, it makes your blood pressure rise or causes any angst – just take a break or block or unfriend, whatever you need to do because your page is your world.  Free couseling here people:)  No really, I have just thought alot about this as I have taken a break & talked with others about it.  For me, I have so much going on in my head and at my house on a daily basis I don’t ever need any extra clutter & when I notice that social media is becoming clutter rather than something I enjoy, I need to turn it off.

All of that to say, that I am a believer in fasting and if you have never tried it, I encourage you to do it!  You can fast from almost anything and you will know what it is that your body, mind and soul need a break from at this point in life.  Maybe it is caffeine, maybe it is skipping one full meal per day, maybe it is turning off the t.v. or radio, maybe it is a full old school food fast with just water.  Maybe 21 days seems extreme to you, so do it for three days instead.  If we don’t have a little flexability, we don’t have anything. Decide what it is then go all in & I think you will experience the goodness of God like never before.  You can file me away as one of those weird Jesus freaks that promotes fasting now:)  Woud love to hear about your experience if you give it a go!  Be blessed and be kind!  Until next time –

your pal,



Wow!  Glad to be back – it has been a minute!  My last post was December 2nd so please forgive me for the inconsitency in my blogger life.  I have been digging into my Master’s program and recently started my praticums which is scary and exciting!  In my last post, I mentioned the providential lunch date with a dear friend who suggested that I just focus on my Master’s work during this season because that is enough.  I promised that my next post would be on the topic of being enough.  I think it is something we all (particularly women) struggle with & I know it is a personal struggle of mine.  I am always striving and always trying to do more, more, and more and sometimes enough is enough.

“I am not enough.” That is a scary phrase that can run through our heads on a regular basis if we are not careful.  The world is always going to tell us that we need to do more, acheive more, make more, strive for more.  But what if we flipped the coin and realized our worth right now, just as we are?  Hillsong Worship is one of my favorite bands and their song “Who you say I am” is at the top of my favorite ever list.  Read these lyrics and let them soak in:

“I am chosen – not forsaken – I am who you say I am – you are for me – not against me – I am who you say I am.  Who the Son sets free, is free indeed,  I am a child of God.  Yes I am.  In my Father’s house, there is a place for me, I am a child of God, yes I am!”

I cannot help but shout those lyrics from the bottom of my heart each time the worship band at church cranks it up – there is such power in those words.  If you don’t know that song, look it up online and you will be hooked:)  I read the following words in my morning devotion (reference: the bible app titled “Nothing to Prove” by Jennie Allen)

“All we crave in abundance is Jesus…Because Jesus is enough, we can experience true fulfillment.  Because Jesus is enough, we can live connected to Him and others, Because Jesus is enough, we can rest.  Because Jesus is enough, we can take risks for his glory.  Because Jesus is enough, we can trade fear for hope.  Because Jeusus is enough, we can embrace grace.  Because Jesus is enough, we can live out our true calling. ”  What a beautiful wake up call!  I don’t want to rush through my to do lists and essentially thorugh life, feeling like I just just need one deep breath.  Sisters, sit those to do lists aside for a moment and join me in just being today.  Be who you are and who God created you to be.  Find peace and comfort in your calling & then seek it with all of your heart -knowing that you are enough in the eyes of the one who matters the most.

You, precious one are enough.  There is a real enemy who would love for you to stay stuck in the lies of believing you are not enough and that you will never measure up, but there is  King who reigns & He wants you to know that you are His.  Stop striving & over-doing because he loves you just as you are now and forevermore.

Thanks for reading along & for supporting my writing adventure!  If you enjoy this blog, please click the link to follow me and you will be notified each time I publish a new post.  Also, when you enjoy what you read, please share it on your social media pages, that will help grow my audience.  God bless you – go have the best day of your life!



Lordy, Lordy, Look who’s 40!

December 11, 1978 – Bradley Scott Sappe entered the world. We were born in the same hospital – six months apart. Word has it that my mother, who was still pregnant with me in December of 78’ ended up with some hand me down maternity clothes from my future mother in law. God is always in the details. It wasn’t too many years after being born that I met Brad Sappe. The county we grew up in is about an inch wide so it didn’t take too long to know everyone.

We saw each other through the years around town at the local ball park & swimming pool. Then, he asked me to the prom when I was sixteen & now here we are with a house, two kids, & a dog celebrating his 40th Birthday 😊 We have almost 17 years of marriage under our belts. We have lived hard, loved harder laughed a lot, & cried a good bit too. It is so wild to think that we are entering our forties but we are always excited for new chapters!

I want to use this blog platform today to celebrate my husband & affirm him on this special, milestone birthday.

So,  let me tell you a few things I know about Brad Sappe. He is kind, he is humble, he is generous, he has a huge heart, he loves others well, he is loyal, he forgives easily & also happens to be a hunk ❤️ He is not perfect & has his flaws just like the rest of us but there are so many reasons to celebrate him.

Brad is an overcomer & now he uses his life lessons to teach others how to be overcomers too. I think God builds us for the storms we will face in life so I think God hard wired Brad for a lot of it but I know that his best characteristics were born through the refining process. Those times when he walked through the fire & Jesus was a few steps ahead, molding him & refining him. Those are the places where he became strong & those are also the places he became tender. God knew Brad needed to be strong enough to carry some stuff but He also needed him to be tender enough to care for other men that are hurting.

Jesus took the pain of a Daddy lost too soon, the pain of broken relationships & the pain of addiction & He repurposed it all so that it could be used for His kingdom. What an amazing God we serve! Don’t ever doubt His love for you, even while you are in the muddy, miry pit because He will pull you out & He has great plans for you. I’ve got living proof.

Brad is seriously the best human I know. He always puts others first & the man never seems to want any material thing. (That must be why God gave him me – I want enough for the both of us ☺️) He lives by the quote that the secret to having everything you want, is believing you already do.

Brad, you are my sweetest gift & I adore you. Thank you for teaching me so much about love, life, people, & freedom. I keep hoping some of your goodness will rub off on me. Even if it misses me, our kids are surely catching some of it & for that I am eternally thankful.

You are a good man, Brad Sappe. Keep on keeping on & promise to live for AT LEAST another forty years. I love you. ❤️

Life Changes

Ain’t it funny how life changes
You wake up, ain’t nothing the same and life changes
You can’t stop it, just hop on the train and
You never know what’s gonna happen
You make your plans and you hear God laughing
Life changes, and I wouldn’t change it for the world, the world, oh no
And I wouldn’t change it for the world, the world, oh no – Thomas Rhett

I love the country music star known as Thomas Rhett.  I love his songs, his candor and how he loves his wife.  These lyrics always make me smile because I can relate and I bet you can too.  Life changes all the time.  There are significant changes like going to college, marriage, parenthood, & then there are all kinds of other changes that happen in the midst of life.  I know that God must get a kick out of all the figuring I do down here and sometimes I think I hear Him and I make a move and mabye I did hear Him but then life changes.

In January,  I launched The J. Sappe Company & I have been pursuing all my passions since then.  Speaking, writing, and decorating.  I love helping make people’s spaces and homes beautiful.  The J. Sappe Company will still be a thing but I am taking a break from the decorating portion of my business.  I have been so blessed with loyal clients that I have had the opporutnity to help time and time again & I have loved every minute of it.  BUT…it is time consuming and for now it it is a leg of my business that needs to rest.

You may remember a blog post that I wrote several months ago about being so stretched out that I showed up to a speaking engagement a full day early and wondered where everyone was.  I shared then that I was taking a step back and evaluating some things I could let go of during this season so I closed my direct sales business & I took a break from serving at my church.  I knew that I was in a spot that by Sundays, I had nothing left to pour out and just needed to show up and be filled up for a while.  Now, I am adding deocrating to that “let go”  list.  For those of you who are just joining us or missed that post, let me recap all that I was attempting to do.  (Don’t judge – I have always been a doer & often miscalculate what is actually doable)

  1. My full time job of operating Cross Roads Recovery
  2. Serving every Sunday at my church
  3. Full time student working on my Master’s Degree
  4. Skincare business
  5. Speaking at events
  6. Writing
  7. Decorating
  8. Being a wife
  9. Being a Mom
  10. Being a sane person

You know how sometimes the thing you need to do is so simplistic but it often takes somoene speaking it you?  Like you just need to hear it in spoken word and then you can do it.  My Pastor & husband helped me decide to take the decorating break & a sweet friend that I don’t see often enough helped me arrive at my next decision.

Ashley and I had lunch last week and as I talked with her about all that has been going on in our lives, she said why don’t you just work on your Master’s Degree right now?  It was like 1,000 light bulbs went off.  Cross is obviously non-negotiable and not going anywhere.  Cross Roads is our life’s work and requires a lot of Brad, a lot of me and of our family but we know it is our work to do.  We may not know much but one thing we know for sure is our calling to this ministry and we are so thankful.  Ashley even said “of course, you will continue your work with Cross Roads but what if the only other thing you work on right now is finishing your Masters?” Then she said “That is enough.”  Isn’t that what we are always striving for?  To  feel like we are enough?  Stay tuned for my next post about “Enough” & until then I am going to burrow down in my family & my school work.

I am in the practicum portion of my program so I will be counseling 10 eager volunteers over the next few months.  Thank you to my willing volunteers & to the Cross Roads residents who might be forced:))

I will continue to blog & work on my writing as I can but I am putting my book dreams on hold right now which will relieve a lot of pressure.  I am reveiwng speaking requests on a case by case basis so I can be super intentional about the things I have chosen as priority right now:) Thanks for continuing to meet me here!  Love & blessings to you this Christmas Season!


Tongue Control

Oh my goodness, have ya’ll been reading along in James over the last week?  I finished and agree with the pastor who said it is a very practical book.  Chapter 3 was the most thought provoking for me.  In my bible it is subtitled “Controlling the Tongue”.  It just so happens that we talk about this a lot at my house.  I have this increible book that I have used for over 13 years now called “Praying the Scriptures for your Children” by Jodi Berndt.  It was gifted to me in 2004 (when I found out I was expecting my first child) by my cousin who is more like a sister, Ashley.  I have loved this little book and used it to pray over not just my children but so many circumstances & people in my life.  I have now given this book as a gift countless times to other Mommas.  All that to say, if you don’t have it, order it or go pick it up and you’ll be glad you did.

If you have ever heard me speak, you have probably heard me share about this book and I always share the two scriptures that have probably been prayed the most over my two kids.  Lawson’s comes from Titus 2 & begins like this “Help Lawson to be self-controlled” & Bella’s comes from Psalm 141 and starts like this “Set a guard over Bella’s mouth, O Lord”  Bless it.  She gets it honest from both ways I’m afraid and just as it is for most of us, it only surfaces when she is angry.  Sometimes in anger it it is easy to speak harshly and deliver words that cut and hurt but cannot be taken back.  James 3 speaks directly to that and I was overwhelmed by the words of James.  He was wise and I think he had lived a little to come to these conclusions.

James 3:2 states “if anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is mature, able also to control the whole body” Think about that!  James is saying if we can control our tongue then we can control our whole body.  He uses the analogy that anyone who grew up in chuch has heard a thousand times about the ship and the rudder.  Ships are huge but yet they are guided by an incredibly small part, the rudder.  He likens that to the tongue that is a small part of the body but has great potential to either do great good or do great harm.  He compares it to a forest fire, a small blaze can be started in a forest and if not tended, it gets out of control and destroys the whole forest.  Our mouths and the words we speak can have the same effect.  James says the tongue is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.  Here is the part that really struck me, verse 9 says “with the tongue we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people who are made in God’s likeness”.

As a teenager I can remember hearing people with foul mouths joke with another and say things like “you kiss your mother with that mouth?” & this is the same concept.  We have one mouth and if with it we sometimes pray and worship God but then turn around and curse other humans who were made just like us in God’s likeness, we are not using the gift of speech well.  We are all guilty of it, people will make us mad and the natural tendency is to lash out but if we become aware of the power of the tongue then we can begin to live our lives doling out supernatural responses rather than natural ones.

James 1:27 says “keep yourselves unstained from the world” but man alive is that hard to do.  It is a continual process for sure.  My husband is a beautiful example of someone who was stained by the world but was then redeemed and lived to tell the story.  We were speaking with someone yesterday about our son and some of the problems he has had at school and how we are so thankful for his spiritual gift of mercy and that so far he seems unstained by it all.  We pray that his sweet spirit and forigving heart always stay in tact no matter what comes.  My husband would tell you that the world & circumstances did in fact crush him.  He gave in & built up lots of walls that led him down a path of destruction & almost cost him everything.  He was a tender little boy much like our son but the world told him he had to be tough and not feel his feelings so he became tough and he didn’t feel and his heart grew hard and that was the beginning of alot of hard years.  Thankfully, in 2013 the Lord rescued him and gave him a new heart & we are forever grateful for this new man that we get to call husband and Daddy.  Brad’s life verse is Ezekiel 36:26 “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.”  Now we pray that same verse over our residents at Cross Roads Recovery.

Just yesterday morning we had a situation that made it hard to control tongues.  I work out early in the mornings & when I get home at 6:30, Brad goes to Cross Roads.  I get the kids up and ready, lunches made and then he picks them up at 7:45 and drives them to school.  Yesterday morning was just one of those chaotic mornings.  Lawson was off the chain, Bella was aggravated by Lawson, the dog was aggravated too and was barking her head off, nobody seemed pleased with the lunches I prepared and everybody was being short and snippy.  Brad walked in and could tell tension was high so he asked what was wrong and we all had versions of what eachother had done to make the morning nutty.  It was past 7:45 and they should have been loading up but instead Brad pulled us all in close & prayed over us.  We stood there in a circle with arms around one another as he prayed the sweetest prayer and reminded us to be thankful always & to remember the Lord’s faithfulness because there was a time, years ago, that we were going through all of these routines without him because he was not living in our home.   Perspective.  Sometimes that is all we need.

Don’t let the world stain you today, stand up to your fears and to your hard circumstances and tell them how big your God is.  And as far as taming the tongue, that will be a life long pursuit.  Progress not perfection:)

Thank you for following me along this writing journey and I can’t wait until I have a book to share with you!  God Bless you all!


God winks…

Have you ever heard of a God wink?  I first heard it from one of my favorite authors in the world, Mark Batterson.  He explains that it is basically when something happens here on earth and you know it is from God – that God sent whatever it is just for you.  God winks at you.  I have been fortunate enough to experience many of these in my life & I don’t know if that is because God loves me so much or if it is simply because He knows I always need real clear signs.  I am a burning bush kinda girl so I don’t need any subtle moves or passive agressive signs, I need clarity.  Thank you Jesus, for speaking plainly to me most of the time:)

Here is my most recent example:

Last Saturday evening I wrote a raw, vulnerable post and it seemed to resonate with a ton of people as it has been my most well received blog to date.  (If you have not read it then go do that so the rest of this post makes sense:))  It was a spur of the moment kind of post in that I had not planned to start writing at 12:30 am but the subject matter had been stirring in my heart for quite some time.  After praying, reading, reflecting, and blogging,  I pulled out my journal.  Last Saturday was October 13th and my last entry had been written on October 2nd.

My 10/2 entry was notes from a recent sermon I heard from Chris Hodges, Pastor of Church of the Highlands in Birmingham.  These are my exact notes:

“Read James.  It is the most practical book in the bible” and right underneath were these words:

How to deal with difficult people:

  1. Overlook the offense in them.
  2. Pray for them.
  3. Forgive them.
  4. Bless them in Jesus’ name.
  5. Do good to them.

Matthew 10:8 “Freely you have received, so freely you should give”

BOOM.  I legit did not need to journal after reading that!  I needed a sign and God gave it right to me.  I literally just drew an arrow on the next page pointing to those notes with the date cause what else was there to talk about?  Blown away by the constant goodness and kindness of our God.

Then,  I went to church Sunday morning and the Pastor was planning to start a new message series but instead he said the Lord told him to hang out in the book of James a little longer!  So, he preached from James.  OMG, okay, got it Lord, I will start reading James and see what you have for me.  I could google “James bible studies” and get approximately 64,700,000 results (seriously – do it and you will get those results too) but I sensed that the Lord was telling me to stay in this raw place and go straight to His word instad of buying a book about His word.  We overcompliacte things sometimes when all we really need is right in front of us.

So, I have committed to reading through James over the next few days.  I started Tuesday and just plan to read a chapter a day – there are only 5 chapters so it won’t take long to get through this book.  If you would like to join me, I would love for you to read along and comment here or message me privately about what God is teaching you as you read through James.

I have also committed to following the list above from Pastor Chris’s sermon.  Reading James is pretty easy but actually DOING the items he suggests above is HARD.  I have never been one to hold grudges so #1 is not too hard for me, #2 is a little iffy, #3 is a process but #4 and #5 are a whole notha’ level!  The first time I did it, it hurt me to speak the names & then to think of going far enough to bless and do good to them?!?! That is not a natural response but that is precisely why we do it, because to live in the natural world and be a Jesus follower is to respond to the world not naturally but supernaturally through what Jesus does in is.  It is not in our power but in His that we are able to respond appropriately to difficult people or tough situations.

I trust that God is going to do a work in me through this study and this daily exercise of those five things.  And really, I can only ever be concerned about wht He does in me.  I can’t do the work in others, only God can do that so all I can do is keep showing up being the best version of me that I can be.  We teach the same thing to our kids.  Since they have been old enough to understand we have always told them that they have very little control over most things in this world but the one thing they are ALWAYS in control of is their attitude.  We always get to choose how we respond & react to situations.  Make a wise choice.

Maybe you are feeling a little spunky and want to go on this journey with me and if so, I’d love to have you reading along and practicing some of these things along with me.  It won’t change our situations or the people in our lives but it will change how we respond to them.  We are called to be doers of the world and not just hearers so let’s do what we can!

(P.S. – thank you for reading along and if you have not subscribed yet, please do.  I have committed to writing 3 times per week – sometimes it will be working on my book but I plan to have at least one new blog post each week.  Fingers crossed!)

Love & Blessings!



journal entry



It has been a while.  I feel like I temporarily lost my voice.  I have not blogged or written at all in an month.  It feels like years.  Tonight I can’t sleep so I am going to write because it has always been therapeutic for me.

When is the last time your heart felt a little cracked? Maybe it was even shattered. Maybe a broken relationship was the culprit or maybe you lost a loved one or you learned of a diagnosis. Or maybe your heart hurts for your kid because they are going through something tough.  Maybe your heart, like mine, breaks for the unkindness in the world and for people who are misunderstood.

We are currently in a season of tough.  It’s called middle school. It’s not fun & I wish there was a fast forward button. I keep preaching that middle school is just something to be endured & that there is not a person alive that wants to go back to those awkward days but that does not make the here and now any easier.

I have been saying for years that the world would be a different place if we all showed a little more grace and kindness to others.  Will you really think about that?  Think about what the world would be like if we all worked to understand people who are different than we are.  I get it – working to understand is hard work, not work that comes easily or naturally so it is much easier to become a judgmental critic but the world doesn’t need any more of those.  I am not suggesting that we link arms and sing Kumbaya but dang it, can’t we all be kind and teach our children to do the same?

If you have been reading my blog long, then you know a little (or maybe  a lot) about my family.  I have done at least one full blog post on ADHD which stands for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.  Our oldest child was diagnosed in Kindergarten & I am the first to say that I did not think it was a real thing until God gave me a child with it.  He tends to humble us like that. It is real but it is not an excuse in our family.  We show grace where grace is needed and discipline where discipline is needed.  We don’t claim to get it all right but no one should ever accuse of us not trying.

I learned long ago that unless I have walked the same path as somebody else and experienced the exact same things that I am not in a position to judge because I simply don’t know what it is like or what I would do in that given situation.  I am a learner and when I am faced with something, I try to educate myself.  I read and I research until I feel like I have a better understanding.  Since ADHD surfaced in our family 8 years ago, we have been advocates and we have read, learned, shared, & seen some of the best doctors around.  We have never used it as an excuse or allowed our child to but we have also never dismissed it or ignored it.

Our kid is really heavy on the “H” of ADHD.  He does well academically but as he has grown in size, he has not grown in maturity so all of his problems now surface not with his teachers, but with his peers.  We knew this would happen one day but were not prepared for how it would play out.  Lawson is in 7th grade but has more of a 5th grade (maybe even 4th) maturity level.  All of Lawson’s peers have surpassed him in social maturity and this is hard to watch.  It is even harder for him to understand why his friends from first grade don’t want to be friends anymore.

If you look up the symptoms of ADHD, particualrly for someone that is heavy on the “H” like Law is, one of the biggest traits is impulsivity.  That has always been one of our biggest struggles.  When he was a little boy, he might drag another kid down the slide but not out of malice or ill intent but just beause it was fun and he wanted everyone to experience the fun.  That is still his struggle now but at this age kids (and their parents) are much less forgiving.  Here is what I know for sure:  Lawson is not perfect, he can be a lot to handle but he is KIND.  He does not have a mean bone in his body & he loves so easily and so mercifully.

We recently verbalized something we have always known.  Lawson’s spiritual gift is the gift of mercy.  Thankfully, his adolescent experiences thus far have seemed to hurt us far more than they have hurt him because he is merciful and he is reselient.  He will walk past a teammate and attempt to give them a high five and they completely ignore him.  30 minutes later, he tries again.  I admire that so much.  If someone ignores me, is unkind or writes me off, I have the tendency to do the same to them.  I am certinly not going to attempt to high five them again if they shunned me the first time but that is where my child teaches me.  He teaches me to forgive easily and just be love no matter the response I receive.

Recently when talking with Lawson about things that happen at school, I reminded him that we can always do something different & to know we are always open to whatever is best for him.  His response:  “Mom, I didn’t say it was unbearable.  I love my school.”  For the love.  Speechless.

I can remember when I was growing up I would hear my parents and my grandmother say something like “you better sweep around your own front porch before you go talking about other people’s kids.”  That basically means that we don’t know everything that our kids do when we are not around and we probably shouldn’t speak ill of other kids since we don’t always know the whole story.  Hopefully, as adults, we all know that there are two sides to every story & I can honestly say that my husband and I have always sought the truth in all of our relationships.  We live with Lawson so we know better than anyone that he can be loud, he can be impulsive, & he has trouble keeping his hands to himself.  We are constantly working with him on all of this and just as we hope people can learn to be tolerant of him, we also teach him to be tolerant of others that don’t share his interests or don’t act or look just like him.

It has become increasingly clear to me over the last two years that people are not teaching their children to be kind.  They may not intentionally teaching them to be unkind but by not intentionally teaching kindness you unintentionally teach the latter.  I have never told my kids to “ignore” anyone.  Of course there will always be kids that they don’t mesh well with so I always encourage them to draw boundaries – be kind but keep your distance if you need to.  See that is just drawing a boundary whereas if I told them to “ignore” those different kids that would teach them to put up a wall and walls keep everyting out including kindness & love.

It hurts no one to just be kind – you are not enabling annoying behavior by being kind, you are just simply being tolerant.  Kindness is alot like forgiveness in that aspect to me.  So many of us don’t forgive because we think that if we forgive that we are condoning the offense but that is not it all, we are simply just choosing forgiveness for the benefit of our own hearts.  You may have hard it said before that harboring unforgiveness is like drinking posion and expecting the other person to die.  The act of forgivness much like kindness is for our own good as much (if not more) as it is for the good of others.

I just returned from an incredible evening and morning of bible teaching by Lysa TerKeurst.  Since this summer she has been talking about the “meanwhile” of life which she refers to as “life between two gardens”  Life began in the Garden of Eden and for Christ followers it will end in a garden when all is made right again.  Genesis begins in a garden and Revelation ends in a garden.

One of the things I surrendered at this reatreat was my Lawson.  I surrendered my worry over him, my concern over how kids treat him, and my concern over what people think of him and us.   Satan is awfully crafty and literally as soon as I got home, I heard about some things that happned while I was away (I was only gone for 24 hours) and I sure was tempted to pick it all back up again but then I remembered the sweet time at the conference and the moment I chose to surrender all of it.  I know that God is a good God and He has plans to prosper Lawson and not harm him.  I may have to lay this one down everyday but that’s okay too.  Life is not easy and parenting teens is certainly not for the faint of heart but we will get through it, there is really no other option.  Thankful that we know first hand of God’s faithfulness, it makes the trusting a little easier.

When you go through tough times or encounter difficult people just remember, this is just life between two gardens.  Take heart because something better is coming.

Blessings & love!  Go be kind to someone just for the sake of it:)