About the Author

Amber C Haines, author of Wild in the Hollow, has 4 sons, a guitar-playing husband, theRunaMuck, and rare friends. She loves the funky, the narrative, and the dirty South. She finds community among the broken and wants to know your story. Amber is curator with her husband Seth Haines of Mother...

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  1. This…THIS…is fullness of life. This is cause to celebrate, to savor, to cherish.

    Oh, how I miss you.

  2. These moments are gifts for sure! They remind us that He is in control and we needn’t worry…and I think of the birds of the air and how He provides. So simple. And yet we allow so many days and pressures and obligations to string together and we think it’s all on us – that our purpose in life is so big and we have to make something happen. But, He uses our mistakes and our simple lives for such bigger purpose – even our moments of sitting still and receiving the Truth that He is bigger than us!

    • Even when I was younger, my friends would tell me that I have a grandmaw living inside. I try so hard! I guess that’s why music and dance and super important to me, though I’m trained in neither one.

  3. Love everything about this post. Think I will go turn up the music, tackle the dishes in the sink, and worship!

    • When we write these posts, we do them several weeks in advance. It’s so funny how often what I’ve written is exactly the thing I’ve forgotten in the day something goes up. I’m the first one that needs to receive what God gives me to write. Sheesh, and sometimes I’m the last to do it.

      I think I’ll listen to music and worship today as well.

  4. I think this is one of the most uplifting posts I’ve read in a while. Took me back to memories of my grandmother singing in the kitchen while she cooked and my mom with her music while she sewed. We never really know how the simple things that we do make the biggest influences on those around us.

    • Seriously, our friend who was here fixing my shelf really encouraged me that day. It is the simple that turns out healing in some of the most complex things.

  5. THANK YOU!!! Both my oldest (son, 27, USN) and youngest (daughter, 19, …) are choosing to not walk with the Lord. My middle child, daughter, is married to a pastor!!! Your post reminded me – they were all raised together with the same parents, same opportunities, etc. All accepted Christ as young children, hid God’s word in their hearts in AWANA programs, but – they have a free will. Right now they are choosing the wrong path.

    All I can do is continue to live my life loving my Father, showing them how my faith makes me stronger.

    For Mother’s day, my son who is serving in Bahrain, had a beautiful cross necklace made special for me. It has all 3 of my children’s birth stones intertwined with gold rope wrapped over a white gold cross. He knows.

    Again, thanks for the beautiful reminder to live, enjoy the music, and dance!

    • Oh Lynda, I didn’t walk with the Lord until I turned 18. I was very rebellious. I think seeing God carry my mother through some of her greatest weaknesses was actually was brought me around. He pursued me. She prayed. I hated that she prayed, too.

      Thank you for sharing this with me. I’m loving the word ENDURE lately, as I fight fear to not be consumed with worry that my own children won’t have faith, especially because of me. We have to cling to truth when our children are 3 and when they’re 27, huh?

  6. Amen and amen!! Sometimes I feel my calling is only the heavy and that I’ve forgotten how to be light…the heavy pulls me down and wants to sit, but I’m wriggling free much in the same way you are…music, words filled with life, the joy of my children, the love of my husband….but the best, yes, the very best, is just sitting in His presence and letting grace and mercy roll in like the tide and just being still in it….feeling it fully, slow breath, calm heart…healing happening.

  7. amber…i LOVE this. i love the image of your family dancing. love the depth seen for your family. love the joy-filled spring afternoons where the heaviness of the world doesn’t lay on your shoulders. <3

    • I needed to read this comment this morning, too. I set the tone for this house. I really do. WHatever I let flow into me is what flows into them. And no faking it either. Kids are geniuses when it comes to fake joy.

  8. I can just see it–you and your boys. Yes, the wod isn’t on our shoulders but under our feet and we can walk it with Him. Whew. I needed to remember that today.

  9. OH, this is just precious! I love listening, dancing and singing to worship music when I’m working or walking but tend to do it in the ‘private’ times – you know, at night when the little one is in bed or while walking home after dropping her off at childcare for her one day a week (yes, in the street, lol!) I need to remember that I can – and should – be doing this more often, and at times when she will see me … not just when it is Him and me together, me ‘by myself’. Thankyou for this post – you reminded me to show that praise and worship ‘just because’.

  10. Thanks for this lighthearted and praise-filled post Amber! I can certainly relate to what you say about the ‘heavy’ topics. I often feel more motivated to write and to work through things on my heavier days. I think my writing helps me release and pray about what is on my heart.

    I so appreciated what you said though! Perhaps I should try to write on my lighter days as well (so that others don’t think that I am a depressive person!! lol)

    Thanks for this! : )

  11. “And I accept this as a good day, a day to leave it all in the hands of the One to whom it all belongs.”

    That is what I want to do at the end of the good days and the not so good…

    Thanks for the reminder.

  12. I needed this today… because I’ve had one of those days that hasn’t been. You know, the kind where you say, “No” fifteen times and the little one doesn’t listen, then you feel bad because you reacted like the human you are. But I’m glad that you’ve reminded me that in the end, it’s not about me… and God is in control.

  13. Oh Amber – I love this. Isn’t it funny – on those days when the circumstances haven’t changed one little bit, but somehow our hearts are light and filled with joy ,,, we sort of wonder if we’re doing something wrong. We are surprised to find the peace and joy He has promised – but there it is. I’m so delighted that you are light-hearted. It is the way our hearts are meant to be.

  14. That, that is exactly it.

    And often I am scared of the same thing.

    But then I just stop and be my ridiculous self — and sometimes that is all the praise God requires of me. Just to be the me He made.

    And that, to my heart, is wonder.

    I love you very, and oh so, much.

    S.S.

  15. 🙂 I have the mental picture, sweetie.

    And I wanted to let you know that my children have known about my past — all of it — from the beginning. I always wanted them to hear it from me and not anyone else. They still love me — and they know where my hope is. Being REAL is the only way to pass on a true faith.

    And when I mess up, I try to admit and ask for forgiveness… reminding them gently that I’m so glad Jesus is in the forgiveness business — and that He promises He can use me if I just remain teachable.

    • Sprittibee, that is soooo encouraging to me. I’ve always planned to tell my kids the truth in age appropriate ways as they ask me and as God leads. Already my 6 year old asked me if I have had sex before marriage (when he noticed that people can have babies without getting married). Already, he knows that God redeemed a very broken me. I’m so grateful.

      I just don’t know many who have been so open though. Thanks for sharing that.

  16. Love this Amber, and YOU. Brings tears, but the ones that mean things are JUST RIGHT. Beautiful. I’ll be sharing this with many because it lightens the heavy load.

  17. This made me smile and feel, and all the heavy and weight of glory, it makes us dance lighter…. and because of you and Haines men… I’m turning up the praise loud in here right now…

    You are a sister.
    Always…
    Ann

  18. this was so sweet to take in. Makes me think of what we really want to be remembered for. Singing to Jesus and dancing with family is way better than a clean sink in my book. We should have a family hootenanny for Jesus out in the field!!!!

  19. this made me smile… and remember all those nights of my parents dancing in the kitchen… and us kids joining in…

  20. it’s all the plain old life moments of laughing and dancing and singing together and folding laundry and racing to put it away and sunsets and reading together on the front porch and a daddy that still cries when we read about the resurrection –
    it’s life and it’s loud and some days it’s plain old IDYLLIC.
    Hallelujah, thanks be to God!

  21. LOVED your post @ A Deeper Story titled: “The Church’s Best PR.” So timely! (Just didn’t know how to comment there.) I met another mom today, who’s child just graduated kindergarten with mine. I made friends with her at the beginning of the year. Just found out she’s atheist. She had an abusive childhood where religion was forced on her. Her husband was abused as well. Despite their upbringings, they are the most loving, gentle and kind parents to their little girl. I know God put this woman in my life for a reason. She lives nearby. We plan to have playdates with our kids this summer. Pray for her and her husband’s heart to know God’s love! I pray He uses me to love on her this summer with His unconditional and non-judgmental love! That’s all she needs to see.. a little light shining to point the way…

    home.