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Desire for a Different Life - June 2017

I’ve been coming to Inheritance of Hope Legacy Retreats for many years now. Sometimes I feel overwhelmed as families walk into the hotel, and I see all the desires that come in the door with them.

 

In the short-term, families want to figure out what to do with their luggage and get settled into their rooms (thankfully, we have a mob of volunteers to help them with that!). The kids may want a delicious DoubleTree cookie, or they may want their brother to stop poking them. They may desire to skip meeting all these new people and run straight to Disney World.


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God is Always Faithful - May 2017

Heather originally shared this in preparation for the May 6 Hunter Subaru Legacy Run.

 

When life is challenging, even though I know I am doing what God has called me to do, I often forget that He wants me to succeed and delights in blessing me!  The staff and volunteers of Inheritance of Hope earnestly seek God's face and His will and strive to know and follow His word. 


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Water - April 2017

I am so thankful that I am a work in progress.  I am thankful that God has not left me where I was yesterday, or last month, or last year.  I am thankful that He continues to work in my heart to mold me into a better person.


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Biblical Hospitality - March 2017

Biblical hospitality is something that Inheritance of Hope does well, particularly as we receive families at Legacy Retreats.

 

Biblical hospitality is not about the hotel industry or inviting friends over for dinner.


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Abundant Life - February 2017

“Every man dies, not every man really lives.”  -Braveheart

 

The death rate in the world has been steady for all time.  It has been hovering right at 100%.  Everyone will die.  Even if you are healthy, active, in shape, body-conscious, one day your body will stop working.

 

Wake up, eat three meals and a few snacks, go to work, clean yourself and your home and car, watch a show, read a book, go to bed, do it again.

 

Is that living or just surviving?


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Content at Christmas - January 2017

“What if this is our last Christmas together?”  If someone in your family has been diagnosed with a terminal illness, this stomach-dropping, breath-stealing question has likely crossed your mind.  I remember the first time it struck me.


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Lice and Other Blessings - December 2016

The Christmas season is a great time to make family memories.  However, discovering lice in your home, as a friend recently did – while hosting an extended family Christmas gathering – is not the kind of Christmas memory anyone wants!  It’s hard to think of anything more universally despised than these nasty bugs that take up residence in our hair.  We describe things we dislike as “lousy,” which literally means infested with lice.  Even the mere idea of lice is so potent that some of you may get the sensation of itchiness on your heads just by reading this!


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Divine Visitor - November 2016

This post was originally shared by Inheritance of Hope co-founder Kristen Milligan in November of 2010.  As we prepare for our largest New York City Legacy Retreat® yet (21 families), we look back at her reflections from the first Legacy Retreat® there.

 

"They saw that the fire had not harmed their bodies, nor was a hair of their heads singed; their robes were not scorched, and there was no smell of fire on them.”  -- Daniel 3:27

 

As I write this devotional, Inheritance of Hope is hosting its first Legacy Retreat® in New York City.  My prayer is that the seven families gathered there are being blessed with memories, community, and support, just as my life has been changed by these blessings at previous Legacy Retreats®.  This is the first Legacy Retreat® which I have not attended, and my heart hurts to miss meeting the families God has brought together this weekend.  Instead I am home recovering from a difficult surgery, feeling broken and useless despite wonderful family support and an ever-patient and encouraging husband.  I know those of you who have battled illness and the inevitable treatments know what I am feeling.


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Storm Chasers - October 2016

Hurricane Matthew is quickly approaching Florida’s east coast, and a bunch of hope-inspirers are leaving their comfortable homes and flying, driving, swimming their way to Orlando to serve 19 families facing storms much bigger than this hurricane.

 

These families have been counting down the days until their Legacy Retreat, and no hurricane is going to spoil this priceless experience for them.


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Marriage Vows - September 2016

Carrey, a wife and mom with ALS, originally shared this post here on August 4th.

 

On this day 15 years ago, Eric and I vowed to unite as one. We joined at the altar in a small, white, Little-House-on-the-Prairie-type chapel. We stood side by side, no bridesmaids or groomsmen, no fancy flowers, no fancy musicians. My dad did all the readings, Eric's dad officiated the ceremony, and we filled the little chapel with our family and closest friends. Having Eric by my side made it a real dream wedding. As we stood at the altar and shared our vows, it would take almost 15 years to fully understand the commitment he made to me.

 

Carrey and Eric in 2001
Carrey and Eric in 2001

 

"I will love you forever, and under all circumstances.
I will stand by your side always.
I will have faith in you and encourage you in everything you do.
I will be here to listen to you, to laugh with you, and to hold you.
I will strive every day to make our relationship stronger.
I will love you, honor you, respect you, encourage you, and cherish you, in health and in sickness, through sorrow and success, for all the days in my life."

 

What that meant was:

 

I will enjoy all of our friends and family with you, socializing, meeting new people, tailgating, and going to our favorite restaurant with you.
I will join you as your doubles partner in tennis and snow ski down the mountain with you.
I will support you leaving the work force to raise our children as you support me as my career developed.
I will be the behind-the-scenes guy for all of your party planning adventures.
I will support you with all your volunteer work.
I will give you free reign to decorate our home just the way you want it.
I will travel around the United States for all of your doctors' appointments.
I will remodel our home to make it accessible for you.
I will bathe you, wash your hair, and shave your legs.
I will scratch your head and eyebrows every time they itch.


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Finding Hope for Single Parent and Blended Families, Part 2 - August 2016

Blended families -- if you're in one, you know how hard "blending" can be. 


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Finding Hope for Single Parent and Blended Families, Part 1 - July 2016

Is there chaos in your life? Do you feel overwhelmed by work, life, and relationships?


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Experiencing God When You've Blown it Big Time - June 2016

Do you feel like you've blown it big time? You know, maybe you've committed a huge sin, or you think God will never love you, or He'll never forgive you? If you've sinned and you know it's wrong but you don't know where to go, this message is for you.


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A New Twist on Mother's Day - May 2016

[This post was originally published on May 2.]

 

Mother's Day 2016 is only a few days away. Hallmark will claim record-breaking sales, and florists will hire extra delivery staff to make sure that the roses and daisies make their way to the doorsteps of moms old and young, new and seasoned.

 

I recently sat for hours going through my own Mother's Day cards… or as my youngest used to say, “polishing and tumbling the memory agates,” alternately smiling and weeping. Smiling over the stories and weeping over the ever dear and precious words in cards, notes, and letters over five decades. Joybox after joybox. Words of encouragement, words of gratitude, tender words of love and appreciation for being an example in hard times… for pointing them to Jesus… for loving them unconditionally.


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Experiencing God When You are Gripped by Fear - April 2016

Fear - it’s a powerful emotion. Have you ever experienced fear so intense that you couldn’t move - that you couldn’t breathe? Maybe had a panic attack? We all experience fear, but God has an antidote for it.


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Group Improv and God's Song - March 2016

As I began to prepare my mind and spirit for the January 2016 Inheritance of Hope Legacy Retreat®, I was also preparing my two boys for a music camp that they would be attending the weekend I was away.  Each of my boys is fairly musical, and this camp’s focus was on “musical improv.”  Up until this time, the boys’ instruction had been extremely methodical, rote, and memorized.  I was eager to see how they would do with this new introduction to flexibility and freedom.


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Wait with Eager Longing - February 2016

One day, they told us, an enormous snake—much longer than a man—slithered its way right through their front door and into the kitchen of their simple home. Terrified, they ran outside and searched frantically for a local who might know what to do. A machete-wielding neighbor came to the rescue, calmly marching into their house and decapitating the snake with one clean chop.


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Experiencing God When You're Troubled and Depressed - January 2016

Do you feel blue, kinda down, depressed? We all get that way from time to time. But when that emotion threatens to pull you under, what do you do? Where do you go? Who do you turn to?


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Everlasting Father - December 2015

A year ago, I reflected on the wonder of “Unto us a child is born,” which took on fresh richness as Allison and I experienced new parenthood along with Advent. Now we can hardly believe that we have been parents for a year already! Our baby girl has grown and changed so much, and so have we. As Advent scriptures and songs once again circulate, different parts of them grab my attention. In a recent reading of Isaiah 9, the phrase “Everlasting Father” struck me. I love my little girl to death, but that is tragically literal – some day death will interrupt my fatherly love. An “Everlasting Father” is worthy of reflection.


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How to Help Someone Who Is Grieving - November 2015

Sheryl Sandberg recently shared movingly about what she has learned about motherhood through grief. But how do we help someone who is grieving?

 

We don’t know what to say. So, too often, we say nothing. Or worse, avoid.


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