Originally published Monday, 29 December 2014.
I recently listed the most popular posts I wrote in 2014. Turning the tables, and in no particular order, here are ten posts I read this past year that really stuck with me:
Five Minute Friday : Nothing by Alia Joy
Alia Joy gets me every time with the weight and depth of her words. She has been a gracious encourager and person of influence in my own writing. This post, which she wrote in just five minutes on the prompt, NOTHING, was one of my favorite Five Minute Friday posts from the past year.
How to Love a Man that’s Hard to Love by Meredith Bernard
I “met” Meredith Bernard online this past year, and she has much to offer. Her words cut to the heart with their truth and encouragement, and her photography skills are stunning. She is also the host of a weekly linkup called Woman2Woman. This particular post, however, gave me a new appreciation for her as a person, and a deeper empathy for all those who find themselves in a situation like her own.
Simple Things by Deidra Riggs
It was this post by Deidra Riggs on “the simple things” which prompted a fresh wave of writing by a number of bloggers, all on the topic of “going there.” Lisa-Jo Baker wrote a post called, “I’m a white girl from the South African suburbs, and I’m ‘going there’.” Her words challenged me to think about my own experience as a white American girl married to a black South African, so I followed with my own, “I’m a white girl from Michigan, and I’m #goingthere” — which became my most-read post of 2014. Thank you again, Deidra, for paving the way for some of us to find our voices on this subject.
Coming (Back) to America: My One Fear by Thabiti Anyabwile
Thabiti Anyabwile is a well-respected thinker and pastor from Grand Cayman who recently moved to the States. He really got me with this post, which he wrote after the Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson. I had the privilege of meeting Thabiti briefly in Cape Town, South Africa, and his words in this article made me think much differently about my own boys growing up in America.
Dear Brittany: Why We Don’t Have to be so Afraid of Dying and Suffering that We Choose Suicide by Kara Tippetts
This post stayed with me for days. Weeks, even. I couldn’t stop thinking about it. Kara Tippetts, a young wife and mother of four battling terminal cancer, wrote this letter to Brittany Maynard, and it was published as a guest post on Ann Voskamp’s site.
I’m Celebrating Mother’s Day for the First Time by Holley Gerth
I dare you to read this post by Holley Gerth without getting at least a little teary-eyed. After years of infertility, Holley got to experience Mother’s Day this year for the first time — in a rather unexpected way.
What We’re Really Hungry For by Emily Wierenga
Every time I see a bag of marshmallows, I think of this piece by Emily Wierenga, which she wrote as a guest post for Emily Freeman after the launch of her memoir, Atlas Girl. It’s about her battle with anorexia, and what she has since learned we’re really hungry for.
The Mourning of Christmas by Katie Reid
Katie Reid has become a dear word sister through the Five Minute Friday community. My heartstrings were tugged hard by this account, a devastating stepping stone in their adoption journey.
How to Help Our Daughters Through Losses by Lisa-Jo Baker
If you frequent this blog, you’ll know I’m a huge fan of South African author and blogger Lisa-Jo Baker. Her debut book, Surprised by Motherhood, was one of my favorites of 2014. This post on how to let daughters process grief was one of her many writings that hit home with me this year.
Let Me Tell You About Mini by Bronwyn Lea
Bronwyn Lea is a real-life South African friend of mine, now living in the States. Her writing is thought-provoking and always insightful. This piece, in which she shares about her own miscarriage, was particularly brave and memorable.
Thank you to all who are faithful to write, to use the gifts God has given, and to share the power of story. Here’s to another year of giving our humble word offerings with open hands, to the glory of God.