I’m glad you are here to celebrate! Share a link to your blog post below and/or use #celebratelu to share celebrations on Twitter. Check out the details here. Celebrate This Week goes live on Friday night around 10(ish). Consider it as a weekend celebration. Whenever it fits in your life, add your link. Please leave a little comment love for the person who links before you.

Naturally, I ought to celebrate a week of Spring Break. A little sunshine and ice cream and time to play with photos + words. Since Andy’s mom moved eight hours away, our spring break tradition of staying home has shifted. Now the kids and I go visit Tennessee and Andy stays home and works.

Did you know taking a road trip with four kids is not for the feint of heart? Taking a road trip with a couple of kids who get a little anxious when one parent is gone is definitely not for the feint of heart. Taking a road trip with a couple of kids who are still learning self-control and have an even harder time regulating their emotions when feeling anxious is only for the very brave (and maybe a little crazy).

People were praying for us. I’m happy to report no one busted out of the van, ran across four lanes of traffic screaming, “Help me! Save me!” No one kicked a hole in the wall. No one punched anyone else. No one refused to go to bed. No one threw a fit.

Make no doubt, prayer is powerful.

I posted this photo on Instagram —

With this little note —
Right now I’m thankful to have a God who heals. Look at them, playing and imaging and inventing and creating a whole wide make believe world. If you were sitting next to me on this screened-in porch, in the tree tops, you’d hear birds and fish splashes and giggles, but no fights. It’s never too late to reclaim childhood.

There’s this story in scripture of a woman who battled sickness for 12 years. She was desperate, spending all of her money on doctors who could not heal her. She is in a crowd and Jesus is ahead of her. She bumps between the bodies of people scrambling and shoving. She reaches out for his garment, believing if she simply touches the fabric on his cloak she will be healed. I imagine her fingers brushing his hem. She is healed instantly and Jesus stops, looks around, and asks who touched him. I bet all the bustling paused in that moment. The woman fell before Jesus, her heart patters, she tells the whole truth. He says, “Your faith has made you well; go in peace and be healed.”

Our kids are too much for me to handle. Not only are there four of them, but their needs are great. When you spend a childhood without a forever family, it’s a process to learn to be secure. Here’s the truth of the matter:

Jesus has more power over our lives than the events that happen to us.

When I think about that woman all dusty and worn out and at the end of her rope, she still reaches out. She still fights with all she has. She still clings to hope. She doesn’t give up.

This is how we overcome the events that have happened to us. We don’t have to allow the hard to define us. We don’t have to give the unfair and the wrong and the unjust a foothold in our lives. Rather, we reach out in faith and allow healing to happen.

Follow me on Instagram! @ruth_ayres 

I shouldn’t be surprised that once again Slice of Life gave me more than I expected. Since I preposted all of my vintage slices, I didn’t have the pressure (err, guilt) to blog. It opened up quite a bit of space for me to work on other writing.

I’ve been using Instagram more and more and learning how it influences my writing process. (This blog post is evidence.)

Listening to Christine Cain’s podcast this week, I was reminded that we shouldn’t ever stay in the same place. I realized this is true for my blogging life. I’m trying to hold on to the way I’ve blogged for the last 13 years and am learning instead of helping me as a writer it is hindering me.

So, today I turned my Instagram account from private to public. It is a place where I collect gritty celebrations and genuine stories. It is a place I document my radical faith. Will you follow me there?

Of course I won’t turn away from blogging. I am thankful we come together to celebrate each week. I’m simply taking the undue pressure and unreasonable expectations off of myself. I’ll continue to collect stories throughout the week on Instagram and I’ll keep blogging here once a week.

It is such a simple solution. I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to figure it out!

Thanks for celebrating with me and encouraging me to evolve as a writer.


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  1. My favorite posts of yours are when you write about your Faith. (Which shows up a lot, so that's cool!) 🙂 Of course I went right to Instagram. Thanks for sharing your story with us. Inspiring.

  2. Wow! Thirteen years of blogging is huge! I can see why you have choosen this path to grow your writing. Thanks for sharing your evolution as a writer here and on instagram.

  3. I haven't done much on Instagram, follow my grandson & daughter mostly, Ruth, will now go to follow you, to see what you're doing there. It's always good to make changes, to dip in to new things. That's good living, I think. This part of your post struck me: “We don't have to allow the hard to define us.” I know that you will help your children slowly see this, that “the hard” is part of life, but not all. I love seeing the picture, what a beautiful time they must be having. In spite of your knowledge that traveling can be 'hard', you gave them other experiences of wonder. Carry on!

  4. Ruth-
    Thanks for this important reminder. My boys are in a really, really hard place right now and it's really, really hard to believe that anything good will ever come again. I've never tried Instagram. Maybe I need to…

  5. I love instagram too!!! I love your honesty in this post! I LOVE blogging but I've been struggling with “keeping up” and the guilt I feel when I don't. Your celebration is almost a permission for me to breathe and write when and where I need to write. Can't wait to see you on instagram. Looking forward to following your journey!

  6. Ruth, your courage and vulnerability show forth in every celebration post. I think the Lord has given you a calling to bring others to the light. My post today is a mix of feelings ending with a synthesis of the gospel reading at Church today.

  7. Following you on Instagram, Ruth. Love these words from your post: “Jesus has more power over our lives than the events that happen to us.” Glad to see that you're removing undue pressure and unreasonable expectations. I've always marveled at all that you accomplish. Thanks for creating this place where we can celebrate the hard, gritty moments, with the easy, happy times, an honest place.