Broken: An Evening With Ann Voskamp, Christa Wells, and Nicole Witt

Broken: An Evening With Ann Voskamp, Christa Wells, and Nicole Witt

Worship Center

Friday, June 8th


$30 per ticket (see link below)

Come and spend a summer evening with writer Ann Voskamp (One Thousand Gifts), and singer/songwriters Christa Wells and Nicole Witt, as they speak and sing on what it is to live broken… to pick up the shattered pieces and still trust the Father, to experience His love remaking and making whole, to give in to a life of multiplied joy. Tickets will go fast, so this is your chance to purchase your tickets now, before they are available to the public HERE.



A Message from the Field (TMoms) by Marya Elrod

Dear Brave TMoms,

 Isaiah 43:18-19

“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. Behold, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?  I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.”  


I love that picture of Him bringing life & hope to something that before was overwhelming and desolate.  But today, as I was reading that chapter again, verse 5 hit me in a new way.  “Do not be afraid, for I am with you; I will bring your children from the east and gather you from the west.” 


So here we are…some of our children are wondering in the east while we are evidently somewhere in the west…we tend to be scattered people even living under one roof…and God is the one doing the gathering, the pulling together.  He does not say for us to get ourselves together or come to Him when we think we can do it right.  He has His arms wrapped around our children and he has his arms wrapped around us in all our broken states. And He says, “Do not be afraid…See, I am doing a new thing!”


Have you had a chance to use your “How They Are Wired” chart to figure out some ways to SEE your teen differently?  Remember that vision for who God is creating them to be is what they see us reflecting back to them.  We can trust Him to do the work.  He is capable!


Side Note:  Below is the poster I started at TMoms in December the week Jenny Watson spoke.  She encouraged us to make a poster to remind us to be grateful.  My kids added to it and it took me until January to get it finished and hung up on our pantry door but it is helping me.  I forget so easily just how much I have to be thankful for! We may just keep adding things to this as we go! Thank you, Jenny!


In His Amazing Grace,




Baby Donations Drive NEXT WEEK!

Moms Together and E-Moms will be collecting items for Grace Pregnancy Resource Center in Nashville during their regular meeting time on February 8 from 9am-noon in The Barn. Items being collected include:

Maternity Clothing

Baby clothing up to size 24 months


Children’s Books

Diapers, Wipes, Lotions, Shampoos and Powder

Maternity Books including “What To Expect When You Are Expecting”

Contact Cindy Hamilton at 478-7496 or  csb722 (at) hotmail (dot) com for details.

GUEST POST: Tinkerbell by Joy Patton

REPRINTED WITH PERMISSION FROM  Joy Patton From Ice Queen to Princess

Visit Joy’s blog to view more of her amazing work!

A poem by Joy Patton

I am a tinkerbell.
Come to me, I’ll make you well.
I have the solution, you will see.
Just follow steps one, two and three.
I will tinker with your heart
And give it back in parts.
I am a tinkerbell.

I am a worry wart
Anxious about things that aren’t.
I fret and worry all night long
Afraid that it will all go wrong.
I will worry for your little heart
And quietly take it all apart.
I am a worry wart.

I’d rather be a carry-well
With no goods to sell.
The only thing I know to do
Is carry you to One who’s True.
He will heal your soul,
Only He can make you whole.
I’d rather be the carry-well.

(If you don’t like it when Christians explain their art, you can stop reading.  If you don’t mind it, feel free to continue.)

Are you a tinker bell? I have discovered that I like to tinker with people and situations.  I spend a lot of time analyzing people and situations and trying to make them better.  It’s part of how I escape the reality of my own brokenness.  It’s part of what allows me to sit in a seat of self-righteous pride oblivious to my own problems.  Either way the art of tinkering stems from unbelief.  I don’t believe that God is big enough or powerful enough to act in the situation.  Therefore I must step in and save the day.  This is how the Ice Queen thinks.  She tinkers so that she can fix, and ultimately control, the people around her.  She operates under the belief that she knows what is best and has the solution to the problem.  I am ashamed to admit that I have a trail of relationships that I have messed up with my tinkering attitude.

Are you a worry wart?  I have found that when my tinkering can’t fix a situation, I resort to worrying instead.  I spend much time worrying and planning for “what would happen if…”  Worry keeps me trapped in fear and despair, unable to move or make a decision.  I don’t believe there is a God who sees or knows or cares about me in my hopeless situation.  Surely he has bigger problems to solve than mine.  This is how the Orphan thinks.  She worries because she feels powerless to do anything else.  She doesn’t believe she has a Father who will take care of her and the people around her.  I’m ashamed to admit that I worry far too often about far too much.  Even now I am stuck, unable to move, lacking hope.

Are you a carry-well? I have found that whether I tinker or worry, prayer is the answer.  By its very nature, prayer requires that I admit that there is Someone bigger and more powerful than me who can handle the situation.  I’m forced to admit that I don’t have the answer to the problem, and as I pray, my heart begins to trust the One who does.  When my Ice Queen and Orphan patterns start to get the best of me, I must remember that I am a Princess with access to the great King Father.  Like the friends of the paralytic in Mark 2, the Princess carries the people and situations around her to the King Father, believing that he has the solution.  So rather than tinker or worry, I must carry it all to Jesus.  I must choose to believe that God sees, that He cares and that He loves.  I must believe that he is powerful enough to overcome any obstacle.  I will carry it all to him and lay it at his feet over and over again even when my head says to run the other way, my feet must go.  I choose to believe.

So are you a tinkerbell, a worry wart or a carry-well?  What will you carry into the throne room today?

Robyn McKelvy’s New Book: SOS Sick of Sex

Be sure to order your copy of Robyn's new book!

Robyn McKelvy has written a new book all about intimacy issues called “SOS Sick of Sex” !

“I am so excited to introduce my new book SOS: SICK OF SEX. This book was written because the enemy of Godly marriages has placed in  our lives circumstances that will creep up to hinder our sexual intimacy.

The deceiver knows if he can keep us thinking negatively about our  intimate relationship with our husband then he has us right where he wants us – doubting what is true about our most intimate relationship of all: our personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

SOS:SICK OF SEX is filled with humor and reality and gives the reader the opportunity to laugh, cry, pray and not settle, at all, for the enemy’s imitation of intimacy.”

Be sure to order your copy now:

Open This Heart and Let me In! by Jenny Watson

“Let me come in” “Not by the hair of my chinny-chin-chin.” Then I’ll….

How many times could this be a script of a parent trying to get into a teen’s heart? The question for us – what will we fill in at the end of that sentence. Then I’ll… do what? Our teens think they know what we will do, and they are usually right. We are so predictable.


The chapters from, The Backdoor to Your Teen’s Heart discussed in December at T-moms gave us some fresh ideas, some unpredictable responses to help us answer the big question, “What’s a mother to do?”


The answers given by the book seem very simple. Creating an environment where our teens have an adequate amount of downtime and creating a place where laughter and joy are commonly heard will soften the hearts of our teens. But, when we see our son playing video games for hours, or our daughters watching marathons of America’s Next Top Model our skin begins to crawl. We can’t help ourselves. You can predict what happens next, “You have been doing that for too long. Get up and do something.” What does that communicate to our children? How does that make them feel? What would happen if we walked up and said, “I’m so glad that you have been able to have some time to play videos, or watch this show? I know you love it.”


While you have to have a balance and can’t allow this all the time, the holidays are upon us, and can’t we allow a little spontaneous downtime especially if that softens our teen’s hearts and allows us access?


The chapter also gave some ideas for some planned, proactive downtime. One thing our kids needed was some time to stop thinking. When our kids were small we sent them to their rooms to think about their behavior. Looking back we realize that was a big waste if we didn’t direct them how to think. In the same way, we have to teach our teens how to stop thinking, how to control their thoughts so that they can free their minds to hear from God. Remember to practice the method we learned to stop and clear out our minds, and lest you think it is not necessary, read II Corinthians 10:5 “…take every thought captive to obey Christ.” What about Philippians 4:8 – “Finally, brethren, what ever is true, what ever is honorable, what ever is right, whatever is pure, what ever is lovely, what ever is of good repute, if there is any excellence, and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.” Teach our children to take their thoughts captive and learn to change the thoughts they are dwelling on if necessary.


Another way for us to train our kids to have downtime is to encourage journaling. Looking back at what they have written in their journals helps them to gain perspective that doesn’t come naturally and helps them to clarify what they are really feeling, but some of our kids might want to sit down and write in a journal just about as much as they want to read a book about studying for the ACT. It seems more like work than downtime. One idea we tried was to lay out magazines on the table with journals, glue and scissors. Have everyone cut out pictures, words, colors, or phrases that they like and glue them in their journals. Use these “inspired ideas” pages and just comment in the journal as to why they liked a particular picture or what a certain quote inspired them to think about. They may cut out cartoons and comics that they think are funny. This is not a waste because as we learned in the next chapter of the book, laughter is a very necessary ingredient if we are cultivating an environment that will encourage our teens to open the door to their hearts.


Now this seems like an easy assignment. We must enjoy ourselves. There are times living with a sullen teen or one who thinks we are the dumbest person alive that could suck the joy right out of the room very quickly.


Their lack of joy is their problem right now, and we can’t make their problem our own. We must model happiness. We cannot make them the source of our happiness. They are not responsible for it. They have the right to think we aren’t funny, and we have the right to crack ourselves up and think we are hilarious.


Have fun without them if they won’t join in, and maybe sometimes don’t invite them to join. Play a game with your husband. When they were little, we orchestrated their activities, schedules and friends. We made sure they had happy times. They need to learn how to make themselves happy in the same way they learned to comfort themselves to sleep at night. Watch for the things that make them laugh spontaneously. Have those things in your home. If you would like more laughter in your home in 2012, then what can you do to nurture that into being? Buy a joke book. Write out a riddle in the morning and give the answer at dinner. Read three jokes and have everyone vote on which they think is the funniest. Play games. Laugh at your self when you do. Do embarrassing things. Take your family to a pottery place and make a coaster set with each person painting one coaster. Find a movie or TV show that you can watch that is funny.


Especially at this time of year, you can find knick-knacks that say, “Joy” or “Hope” or even “Laugh.” Put one in your home and keep it displayed year round.


Ecclesiastes 2:25 says, “For who can eat and who can have enjoyment without Him?” If you are struggling with enjoying your life, with enjoying our God, it seems cliché, but keep a gratitude journal. Put a poster board with this verse on it inside your pantry door and have everyone write something they are thankful for on the poster before they can “eat” a snack. It will probably end up being a very funny poster.


Remember Psalm 126. The first two verses talk about great things God has done for His people which contributed to their happiness. The center verse states that presently the people are glad. The next verses speak to the future and give hope. Hope is crucial to enjoying a teenager. In order to be presently glad, or happy, we need to look at the faithful past and the hopeful future. This too will be funny one day.


Don’t wait until after the holidays to start enjoying yourself. Begin now. It’s a really fun assignment and may lead to some moments over this holiday time where you can go through the backdoor to your teen’s heart. You will say, “Let me come in” in a way where they don’t even recognize that you asked, and instead of, “not by the one scraggly hair that you just noticed is growing on my chinny-chin-chin” you may get some unexpected access!

Gingerbread House Outreach

We posted this last Christmas, but  since it is such a “goodie”, we wanted to post again for this holiday season!


Gingerbread House Outreach

by Anna Clagett

I love Christmas!  I have been known to begin playing Christmas carols around September, and I’m always eager to get out all the Christmas boxes the day after Thanksgiving.

The reason I love Christmas so much, is that it is a holiday where most of the world remembers and honors the birth of Christ in surrounding itself with beauty, and responding to His gift to us by giving of themselves to others.

It is also a wonderful and natural time to share with those who may not know Him about what Jesus means to us.  I have many friends who’ve taken advantage of this time of year to share their faith in creative ways.  Some of my friends have hosted a holiday tea at their home for neighbors where a guest speaker has shared the Gospel with them.  I have several friends who host an annual “Birthday Party for Jesus” where a cake is assembled with each step symbolizing parts of the Gospel.  Some friends deliver holiday dinners to the less fortunate or even go caroling as a means to share the Gospel.

One tradition that I especially cherished as a child was making a gingerbread house with my family.  And as I had children of my own, over the years I’ve developed our own tradition using gingerbread houses as the basis for sharing the Gospel with families in my neighborhood.

I happen to have a mold for a gingerbread house, so a couple of weeks before my party, I begin to bake walls and roofs enough for each of my guests.  I prepare enough component parts for each child, or one per family depending on the number of people I expect and on how much time I have.  If you’d like to simplify, you could accomplish the same thing by using 1/4 pt. milk cartons and graham crackers on hand for each child.

I ask each guest family to bring a bag of candy for decorating to give us a good variety, and as they arrive, I let them spread out around my kitchen and dining room to create their houses.

I take pictures, and provide coffee and cider, and keep everyone supplied adequately with icing, and candy.

When everyone finishes, I invite all the children and adults to join me around the Christmas tree.

Gingerbread Recipe

(Makes 1 Gingerbread Building)

[Section Break]

3 c. all purpose flour

1 ½ t. ground cinnamon

1 t. ground ginger

½ t. baking soda

½ t. salt

¼ t. ground cloves

½ c. margarine

½ c. sugar

½ c. molasses

1 egg

[Section Break]

Combine flour, cinnamon, ginger, baking soda, salt, and cloves.  Mix well.  In large mixing bowl, beat shortening and sugar until blended.  Add molasses and egg.  Beat until smooth.  Gradually add flour mixture.  Mix well.  Lay plastic wrap tightly over dough and chill at least 30 minutes.

If using a mold:  Press dough firmly into lightly greased mold filling all sections.  Trim away excess using serrated knife.  Bake at 350 degrees for 17 to 20 minutes.  Cool in mold for 5 minutes.  Remove pieces from mold.  Repeat as necessary.

If not using a mold:  Draw walls and roof on paper and cut apart to use as a pattern. Roll dough onto lightly floured surface approximately ½ inch thick.  Cut to desired shape around paper, and carefully place on lightly greased cookie sheet.  Bake at 350 degrees for 17 to 20 minutes.  Let cool for 5 minutes before removing from pan.

Icing Glue

4 c. powdered sugar

3 egg whites

1/8 t. cream of tartar

Place all ingredients in a medium, non-plastic mixing bowl.  Beat on low speed for 5-7 minutes or until icing is glossy and holds peaks.  The icing dries very quickly, and must be covered or kept in an airtight container and refrigerated when not in use.  Icing may be tinted with food coloring if desired.

House Kit:

1 set of 4 walls, and two roof pieces, pre-made

OR 1 1/4 pint emptied milk carton and graham crackers

icing glue

plastic or butter knives

cardboard base (approximately 12”x12”)

candy assortment (ask each family to bring one bag)

wet paper towels, washcloths, or wipes for messes

Make gingerbread ahead of time, one per family, or one per child depending on how many guests you expect and on how ambitious you are.  As the guest arrive, hand out the “house kits,” and let them have at it.  (I always try to take some pictures of each family working on their house(s) to give to them later.)  As the guests finish up their creations I like to gather all the children around the Christmas tree.  The adults make themselves comfortable around the room as well.  Then I begin to tell the children about what gingerbread houses remind me of:

“The Gingerbread Gospel”

Can you imagine what it would be like to live in a life-sized gingerbread house?  What would your favorite candy house be made out of?  (let the children offer ideas.)

That would almost seem like the perfect place to live, wouldn’t it?  Well, the Bible tells us about a real perfect place to live.  It’s called heaven.  That’s where Jesus lived long ago.  But God decided to send Jesus from His perfect house in heaven to earth.  Do you know what was the first house Jesus lived in on earth?  (pause to let children answer)  It was a stable, and his first bed was a manger.  What is a stable? (a barn) What do you think it would have smelled like?  What would it have looked like?  What would have been in that stable?  And what is a manger?  (a feeding trough for animals)  Was it anything like the perfect place Jesus came from? (Luke 2:7)

Now why do you think that God would send His own Son from a perfect house in heaven (John 17:5), to a dirty, smelly, cold place like a stable?  (children offer answers)  Because He loves you very much!  He wanted you to know Him and so He sent His Son to tell you and show you all about God.  Jesus did just that.  He taught us about God, and the things that He taught are all written down for us in the Bible.

One day, when Jesus was still a young man, he left his home on earth.  He died for all the bad things we’ve done.  And now He has a new home.  Do you know where that is?  He wants to live in our hearts.  (Rev. 3:20) He will come and live in our hearts if we ask Him to, and forgive us of all the wrong things we’ve done!  Now, why do you think He would want to live inside us, and forgive us of our sins?  (listen to any responses)  He does that because He loves each one of you so much!  He wants to always be close to you, and help you.

Finally, the Bible says one more important thing about houses.  It says that Jesus is preparing a house for each one of us in heaven. (John 14:2) He says that one day, we can all live forever with Him there in that perfect, wonderful place!

Now, when you take your gingerbread house home, I want you to remember how much Jesus loves you every time you look at it.  And I want you to remember that Jesus wants to live inside you, and to have you live with Him in heaven some day.

Let me pray and thank Jesus for all His houses.

Dear Jesus,

Thank You for leaving heaven to come to earth to teach us about God.  And thank You for dying for all the wrong things we’ve done, and wanting to live inside us.  Thank You for preparing a place for us in Your beautiful heaven.


Fellowship Women—connect, grow, reach out! Join us!

Christmas Express

We still have 200 kids that need to be sponsored at $40 per child and a significant need for volunteers who like to shop. To help a family in need this Christmas, click Christmas Express to sponsor a child and register to volunteer.


Women At Rest

Saturday, Dec. 3rd, 8:30-11:30am, Learning Center, Fireplace Lobby

This is a time for women to draw into a place of intimacy with the Lord. This ministry seeks to help women develop the ability to hear God’s voice through Scripture, recognize the “still small voice” of the Holy Spirit, and see God’s hand in their daily lives. RSVP to  so we can be praying for you. Click Women At Rest for more information.


Women’s Spring Studies

Would you like to get to know some of the women at Fellowship better? Would you like to interact and grow in your faith with other women? Our spring semester launches in January, and there are several opportunities just for you! Morning and evening classes available to fit your schedule. Click Fellowship Women for more information.


Women’s Connections

Come connect with other Fellowship Women who live in your area. Below are the dates and times. If interested in starting a women’s connection group, please contact Joy Patton (joy@ Click Women’s Connections  for more information.

•        East Brentwood/South Nashville Connection: Dec. 1, 7:00pm, Amy Rhyne’s Home

•        McKay’s Mill Connection: Dec. 8th, 7:00pm, Colleen Reilly’s Home,

•        Brentwood Connection: Dec. 8th, 7:30pm, Jane Martin’s Home, RSVP

•        Nolensville Connection: Dec. 12th, 7:00pm, Special Christmas gathering, Beth Lother’s Home RSVP


Fellowship Women’s Facebook 


Fellowship Moms Blog Subscribe on the bottom right where it says “SIGN ME UP!” if you’d like to receive an email each time the blog is updated.

Seeds Family Worship – Thanksgiving activity, discount, free download

Some great Thanksgiving activities for you and the kids and  a FREE download of “GIVE THANKS” from the SEEDS OF CHARACTER CD:


Have a great Thanksgiving!

Who is this Jesus… and Why did He Come?

This new Christmas devotional written by gifted writer and E-Moms teacher, Chris Baxter, is now available! This devotional has 25 days of study to take you through the month of December with thoughtful, Word-filled nuggets in anticipation of celebrating Christ’s birth. They are $5 each and can be purchased in the Fellowship Women’s office in the Concord House during business hours.

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