On March 1, 2013, my husband and I loaded up our four young children, a moving van full of essentials like Legos and Bumbo seats, and our elderly golden retriever.  My best friend met us the next day, and the seven of us traveled 1400 miles west, to Denver, Colorado.

We were moving home.

Which is an odd statement to make, because before March, I'd spent a total of three weekends in Colorado in my life.

We first started talking about leaving our hometown in the Bible Belt because we thought God was calling us to to a specific field of ministry.  Then our lives fell apart.  We forgot who we were, and nearly lost our marriage.  Looking back, I am no longer convinced God was ever calling us to a certain job.  But in His sweet goodness, He was leading us to a place where we could fully be ourselves and flourish.  He wasn't leading us to a career; He was leading us home.  Now that we're here, I'm waking up.

A Wide Mercy was born out of that awakening.  Years worth of hard-won thoughts and emotions need a place to take shape, and a blog is the most natural place to share them.

I am learning to tell my story.  As I do, I am discovering others may even want to hear it.  I am a regular blogger at Middle Places.  I have also been a guest blogger for Prodigal Magazine,, PardyMama, Carly Gelsinger, and Five Kids is a Lot of Kids.

I believe in a big, wide, ancient, beautiful God.  The rest of life is up for interpretation.

And I'd love to talk it over with you.  You can follow A Wide Mercy on Facebook, as well as subscribe via email or RSS.  You can also email me at awidemercy dot gmail dot com.

A few other things to help fill in the blanks:

-  My husband was in a bike accident two months after we moved, and spent six days in the hospital. It was one of the most harrowing experiences of my life.  He is much better, thanks be to God, but the results of a serious concussion continue to impact our family.

-  Last year we invited a former youth (from my youth ministry days, many moons ago) to formally become part of our family. She has since declined. In a sense we have experienced a failed adoption.  It is a complicated and heartbreaking tale, and I won't bring it up very often. But it is too much a part of my story to ignore.

-  I don't use my husband's or kids' names. For years I kept a family blog that had their names and mine plastered everywhere. If you start poking around, you may find it. But here I have only referred to them by their relationship to me. 

-  I regularly write about motherhood and my kids (some of my personal favorites are here, here, and here).  But I am not a soldier in the mommy wars.  I've worn babies and put them in carriers, bottle fed and breast fed, co-slept with an older baby and put a six-week-old in his own room. I homeschool because it makes the most sense for our family, but I still can't think of myself as a "homeschooling mom."  I believe mothering is about building relationships.  Whatever helps you love your kids better and feel more confident in your role, that's what you should do.  Most of all, I hope you love your choice.

Peace to you, friend.

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