Huge Announcement: A PODCAST Designed for You

What’s your biggest struggle as a woman?

Can I guess?

Is it finding time to take care of yourself? You know, that ever-elusive concept of me-time. That thing you reason you don’t actually need–it’s just a “luxury.”

You ladies are smart. You know that’s not true. You know you should take care of yourself. But knowing and doing are two different things. And when your schedule is full of hours at your job, hours taking care of your family, hours taking care of your home, hours hanging with friends, hours volunteering, etc., etc. Me-time just doesn’t make the cut.

I know this because I’m so so so guilty of this myself. But here’s the problem: I’m good . . . until I’m not. And when I’m not, it’s usually a huge mess. The definition of insanity is repeating the same action expecting to get different results. So if you, like me, keep pushing off me-time for “later” and then hitting a wall that keeps you off the playing field for more time than you can spare, then join with me to intentionally STOP doing the same thing.

Let’s make me-time a priority. Let’s take care of ourselves–body, soul, and spirit. Because when we make taking care of ourselves a priority, then there will be more than enough of us to give away to all the other wonderful people and important activities that fill our schedules.

And that’s what this first season of The Mentor’s Table’s podcast is going to be all about.

Cue the trumpets: da da da daaaaaaah! Yes, you read that right, The Mentor’s Table is starting a podcast! I loved our live mentoring sessions last year, but I hated how inaccessible they were to so many more people. And if you followed me for even a smidgen of time, you know that I love all things podcasts. So, I bought a microphone and a pop filter (see, I have been doing my research–I didn’t even know what that was a few weeks ago), and we’re going to make The Mentor’s Table more accessible than ever by broadcasting our Table Talks via podcasts.

Plus, I wanted to bring some more voices to the table. I know so many incredible women that I learn from, and I wanted them to add their experience and wisdom to the conversation. So each month I’ll try to have a new woman join me at the table as we unpack this concept of making me-time a priority. Plus, we will detail practical steps to actually find time to take care of yourself. 

Confession: This is an area that I struggle with. A. Lot. I don’t have this all figured out. I’ve been the poster child for insanity in this area. But I have resolved to get better, and it’s so important to me that I wanted to take this whole season and focus on every aspect of prioritizing taking care of self first. That’s one of the reasons why I’m incorporating more voices into our table talks. And since I know that progress without accountability is virtually impossible, I thought that adding some more voices to table will also add a level of accountability to my own life to make this goal attainable.

My introductory podcast will be live in the next few days! So if this conversation intrigues you or stirs your heart because you know this is something you really need to work on, be sure to check out my first podcast. I’ll post reminders on Instagram, and I’ll post show notes here on the site. Plus, if you’re signed up for my reminder emails, you’ll get a little nudge in your inbox. The bottom line is, don’t miss this conversation. It’s going to be healing and empowering and motivating to get your life headed in the right direction. And be assured, you are not alone. This is a common struggle among women, but we don’t have to keep ignoring the issue. Let’s go on the offense and make a change in all our lives.

After my introductory podcast, I’ll post a new conversation on the first Friday of every month. In it we will discuss a different aspect of taking care of ourselves as healthy beings, as wives, as mamas, as working women, as volunteers, as daughters of God, etc. This is a discussion we all need to have, so . . .

Pull up a chair.

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Unconditional Respect

Have you read Love and Respect yet? I highly recommend it. I read it last year, and I was blown away by the basic, biblical principle that a wife’s primary need in a marriage is unconditional love, and a husband’s primary need is unconditional respect. We hear about unconditional love all the time, but who’s talking about unconditional respect? That means my husband doesn’t have to earn my respect before I give it. I give it. Period. 



In 2017, my word for the year is RESPECT because, as much as I enjoyed the book last year, I did not put it into practice as I knew I should have, and I want to be a better wife to my husband. So this year I’m making it my focus by slowly re-digesting Love and Respect by Emerson Eggerichs. 

You can watch me rehash some of the principles I’m applying in Table Talk 24: R-E-S-P-E-C-T. All my mentoring moments at the table are archived in my private Facebook group–Table Talks With Joy. Not a part of the group? Sign up for live mentoring moments here, and you’ll automatically be invited into the group.

Who’s read this book? What was your big takeaway? 

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I saw the title of this book, instantly assumed the content (ANOTHER book about time management and priorities), and I decided my “Best Yes” would be to pick another book that I couldn’t already write myself. Yikes, does that sounds like pride, or what?

So I ignored the book for months, actually years, while all of my friends read it, did small groups studies about it, and testified how encouraging it was to their lives. And I plowed on without reading it.

Just this week another group decided to read it. I didn’t have any other pressing books to read, and I could get it for free from the library, so I went ahead and reserved it. I figured I’d read a few chapters, confirm that I already knew this lesson, and I’d return it to the library.

AND THEN . . .

I started reading. And then I wanted to underline something on every other page!

Lysa gets me. She is saying a lot of what I already follow and believe, but she lays a biblical foundation that explains the why of what I believe. The “Best Yes” is not “a decision based on priorities,” as I had assumed. The “Best Yes” is to identify God’s will for your life and then schedule and plan for it, instead of letting the rest of life get in the way and overwhelm your soul.

For a preview of the book, I talked about the biblical foundation for why we educate ourselves before we make a decision in my Table Talk 15: Taking Care of Yourself. If you’re not signed up for my live mentoring moments, you can sign up now, and you’ll gain access to my private FB page where all my Table Talks are archived.

And if you’re like me and have been putting this book off, click on the picture and purchase it now (it’s less than $10!). It will not disappoint.

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An Invitation to Mentorship

When I began The Mentor’s Table, my goal was to reach out to millennials and help mentor them as they navigated adulting. But the more I researched “millennials,” the more disparaging talks I heard about this generation born anytime between the 1980s and now. I don’t believe anyone is making a difference telling an entire generation how terribly they were raised and how inept they are. I remember growing up under the “Generation X” label and similar complaints being said about my generation. That label plus older adults telling me what was wrong with my friends and me did nothing to motivate me to want to change. It basically just made me angry and frustrated because I was being lumped in a group as opposed to treated as an individual. This labeling and analyzing a generation isn’t anything new–it’s just a different form of what was said before, except that now it’s mostly laden with technology blame. And I’m done with labels. So this site is not for “millennials” or “gen-x” women. It’s just for YOU.

You Are Not a Label; You Are an Individual

Rather than try to target a label, I want to reach out to you, the individual. If you (no matter when you were born) have moved out from your parents and are trying to do this
“adult” thing by mostly faking it ’til you make it, then I’d like to invite you to pull up a chair to my table. If you are sick of realizing how little you know about how to do some of the basic skills necessary to living on your own, skills like cooking nourishing food, managing a home, and establishing and maintaining meaningful relationships, then pull up a chair. If you are struggling with the intangibles–feeling frustrated or unfulfilled, constantly in strife, haven’t identified your purpose–then grab a warm mug of your favorite drink, and join the table.

Let me be clear. I will make no apologies for approaching this mentorship relationship from a Christ-follower perspective. Having a personal relationship with God, I have found consistency and peace in the worst of times, and I would love for you to experience that same peace and provision. So as we talk about home management, cooking, and especially matters of the heart, I will share my life lessons from a biblical perspective.

An Invitation to Mentor You

There’s an innate need in all of us for mentors, but mentors are hard to come by. I’m offering my time to you to try to do my part to fulfill the need for mentors. I know this doesn’t feel as personal as a living breathing human investing in your life, but there’s something to be said for the virtual nature of this mentorship relationship:

  • You can fit me into any schedule.
  • You can always refer back to articles at any time.
  • You can watch the live mentoring moments either when they broadcast live, or you can go back and watch the replay at your convenience.
  • Late at night or midday, The Mentor’s Table is extending to you an open invitation to come and sit with me for a few minutes so we can talk about life.

I won’t take your trust lightly. I know your time is valuable too. And if you ever find this table isn’t serving your needs, then I promise I won’t guilt you into staying. You always have the choice to remove yourself and find another table and mentor to sit under.

But First You Must COMMIT

Keep in mind, our culture thrives on non-commitment. So my first challenge to you is to commit for a period of time: six weeks? six months? “Just do it” as Nike says. But don’t sit around complaining to your friends or social media that life is hard and you wish you knew what you were doing or that you just feel like a victim of life’s punches. Turn your eyes inward, to your heart, and commit to change. Then do something about it. Maybe that “doing” is simply signing up for the live mentoring moments on Facebook and watching them weekly. Maybe it’s enrolling in a small group at your church (or maybe it’s attending church on a regular basis again). Maybe it’s something else. But until you commit your heart to change, you won’t see results.

It starts with committing your heart. Every time.




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Where Was God in 2016?

2016 brought some crazy, some serious crazy. And it brought a lot of heartbreak. A lot.

But let’s stop for a moment and take a closer look at this past year.


To begin with, it’s important to choose to be thankful first, to “enter His gates with thanksgiving; go into His courts with praise” (Psalm 100:4 NLT). Before we go any further and let the 2016 memories drown us in sorrow, let’s get our hearts and our minds in the right place by choosing to be thankful. You don’t have to begin with being thankful for the crazy, for the bad, for the hurt that happened this year. But you always want to start from thanksgiving. So push through the difficult and infuriating memories of 2016, and remember some of the good that happened.

Now write it down. Gratitude as a fleeting thought is not nearly as powerful as gratitude written down in permanent ink as a tangible touchstone for your senses to encounter and remember. Take it a step further and engage your ears and your mouth in the process by saying what you’re thankful for out loud. Thank God for the good that you remember–for the moments of joy, the divine provision, the health, the breaths to live another day, the friends who hugged you, the song that came on when you needed it, or the food that was on your plate yesterday. Be thankful for the little and the big. Be thankful a lot.

Once you’ve given ample time for your heart to quiet down and your mind’s eye to focus on the good, you’ll be in a place to be able to fix your eyes back on the Author and Finisher of our faith. Isn’t that what Christmas is supposed to be about anyway–readjusting our focus and fixing our eyes on that miracle baby sent to change the trajectory of our destiny and send our story to an ending marked by redemption and freedom? Focus back on Him, and then remember . . .

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Intentional Thankfulness

A reminder to speak thankfulness over your future AND free printable
What are you thankful for from this past year?


What are you thankful for that you believe will happen this next year?


These are the two questions my family members each had to answer before the Thanksgiving meal was served. My mom would prepare a little bowl by filling the bottom with unpopped popcorn kernels. We would pass the bowl around, each take two kernels, then pass it again, as one at a time, each person would put one kernel back in the bowl while sharing what he or she was thankful for that happened in the past year. When the bowl got back to the first person, it’d continue on one more round, this time each person putting in a kernel and naming something he or she was thankful would happen in the next year.


Let’s be honest. It’s pretty easy to come up with something we’re thankful for that has already happened. Why? Because it’s tangible. We saw it with our eyes, touched it with our hands, felt it with our hearts. But those intangibles . . .

Why are we so fixed on choosing to be thankful for what we see when there’s so much power in being thankful for and speaking out what we cannot yet see?


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The Mentor Joy Reads . . . WITHOUT RIVAL

Click the image to purchase this book (afflink)
The premise of the book is that God doesn’t love equally (because that would mean His love could be measured, but it is beyond measure), nor does He love us the same (because that would mean His children are “replaceable or interchangeable, and they are not”). Rather, God loves us uniquely. And in order to begin to understand that love, you must first understand who YOU uniquely are. You are “without rival”; you can’t lose. You must see yourself from God’s vantage point.

Here are some more quotes from the book to begin to meditate on:

“Contentment and being truly comfortable in your own skin won’t breed complacency; they will release creativity” (emphasis mine).

“There is a very real battle going on for the strength of your soul. It is time you took your place in this world.”

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Build Your Skill Set

Why you should try learning a new skill instead of staying reliant on technologyI recently listened to a Ted Talk about millennials and their desire to be taught how to be independent and empowered. One extreme example in how far some had strayed from independence (or the speaker would argue she was never taught otherwise because of parents who enabled her) focused on a college-age girl who needed a stamp. Whenever she needed a stamp, she would call her mom, and her mom would then mail it to her!

While I find this appalling on so many levels, if I’m being honest, I found a trace of myself in this story. In this age of technology, what we want or need is generally immediately available at our fingertips or can be delivered on our doorstep in less than 48 hours. When we have a question, we don’t have to go anywhere to get an answer, we just turn to our smart phones. When we need to see how something is done, we YouTube it. There is no immediate need for us to better ourselves by learning a new skill because we can just find a bandaid fix that takes care of our need without any real thought on our part going into it.

Stop relying on band-aid fixes. Learn how to do it yourself.FATAL FLAW

The fatal flaw that this system contains is that we’re
not learning and bettering ourselves. If the problem comes up again, we’ll just YouTube it again. We’re not learning anything. Just like if the aforementioned girl needs a stamp again, she’ll just call her mom. She won’t learn where her closest post office is. She won’t research a list of stores that also sell stamps that she could buy when she’s there already buying something else. She’ll never know that she can print postage online and not even have to leave her home (or wait for her mom’s stamp to arrive).

What skill are you purposely not learning because you’ve reasoned that you don’t

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