Shop the fall collection ➔

Before kids, I don’t even remember praying. I know I did. I remember as a kid praying when things got tough. I remember seeking a deeper spiritual fulfillment, but maybe not always knowing how to find it. 
 
My first born inspired in me an intense need for authenticity. I realized that I never wanted her to pretend to be something she wasn’t, or to do something that didn’t feel meaningful to her simply because she was “supposed” to do things a certain way. I wanted her to seek and find the things that mattered most to her.
 
Up until this point, I had tried to be “religious,” but because I had never taken the time to find what felt truly authentic to me, I didn’t really understand what it meant to be “spiritual.” But after feeling such a strong desire for her to be her authentic self, I knew the only way to teach that was to live it myself. So I began questioning everything I thought I knew. I explored religion in a different way, God in a different way, prayer in a different way. I found what felt true in my soul and, in doing so, connected with a whole new level of reverence and awe. 
 
I found God outside in the bottom of a riverbed. I found God in the yearly migration of the sandhill cranes. I found God in the wide open sky and in fireflies and in the bare trees in winter. I found God in the people around me. And in my daughter. And in myself. 
 
It didn’t always look like the same God other people knew and were comfortable with. And the way I worshiped didn’t always make sense to people. But it finally made sense to me. 
 
My firstborn sent me off on a spiritual journey to uncharted territory. The birth of my second daughter brought me home. When my first was born, my heart began to crack open and expand and make room for things like God and spirituality in my core. When my second was born, my heart was already wide open to the tsunami of love that came crashing in. 
 
I was and am so fiercely in love with these little people that sometimes I think my heart will explode. And I find myself praying more than I ever have, the quiet desperate prayers of a mama who knows she can’t do it alone. Who knows this world can be a big bad scary place, and that I can’t keep these sweet little hearts safe under my wings forever. It’s going to take me and God and the whole village to support them in becoming the beautiful, fierce, amazing women I know they will be. 
 
I can’t do it alone. So I pray. I pray for my newborn to stay healthy through her first month of life that happen to coincide with flu season. I pray every time I send my oldest off to school or to her friend’s house or with her dad. I pray every time I hand my fragile little baby to someone else to hold. I pray every time I put them to sleep at night and every time I wake them up in the morning. 
 
And not just for help. I pray with intense gratitude. Because I can’t believe what a blessing it is to be their mom. I can’t believe how blessed I am. 
 
All day long I feel like there is a steady stream of hope and gratitude and requests for help and grace and guidance and protection pouring out of my heart. I read a Native American Proverb once that said, “Make every step a prayer.” I loved it when I first read it. Now, I live it. Every step to the bottle warmer in the middle of the night. Every step away from preschool when I drop her off. Every step a prayer. 
 
I don’t remember how I prayed before children. I know it was a different kind of prayer. Just like it will be a different kind of prayer when I send them off to school. And for their first slumber party. And the first time they encounter a bully. And when I send them to college, or wherever they will go after that. It will be a different kind of prayer when they find someone they want to marry, when they choose to have children or not to have children. And it will be a different kind of prayer each year as I get older. 
 
Parenting changes the way you pray. It doesn’t matter who you pray to or how you pray, children will change it because they change you. Not just once, but over and over again. 
 

Megan Launchbaugh

Megan is a Nebraska native who is still trying to figure out what she wants to be when she grows up. She spent eight years working in the education field before studying to become a Licensed Massage Therapist. Most recently she has begun exploring stay-at-home-mommyhood while raising her two daughters in a blended family with her amazing husband. She loves taking pictures, ordering books from Amazon, wishing she could play the guitar, and planning what she will go back to school for next. She blogs about authenticity and raising authentic children and, when she isn't cleaning up toys or folding laundry, she can be found writing in her own little corners of the Internet. Keeper of the Snacks: Mommyhood Unedited http://www.keeperofthesnacks.wordpress.com/ Connect with Megan: Facebook http://www.facebook.com/keeperofthesnacks Twitter @keeperofsnacks

Take Courage

In: Faith, Living
Woman hiking with arms wide

My sophomore English teacher kicked off the school year by reading Anne Sexton on the first day of school, a poem called Courage. Fifteen-year-old me did not care much for poetry or even English class. Poetry has grown on me over the years, but I don’t miss memorizing Shakespeare or taking standardized tests or my huge literature book that took up most of the real estate in my maroon JanSport backpack. I wrapped my book carefully with a brown grocery sack that by the end of the year was covered in markers, drawings, and scratch-outs of boys’ names. Before I...

Keep Reading

The Best Marriage Advice We Ever Got: Touch Feet Every Night

In: Faith, Marriage
Couple touching feet in bed

Twenty-six years ago this summer, I got a tiny piece of advice on my wedding day that has kept me from making a huge mistake time and time again. A wise woman told me, “When you climb in bed each night with your husband, make sure that your feet touch under the covers. It’s hard to be mad at someone and touch feet.”  I had no idea, all those years ago, how impactful this piece of advice would be and how many times in our marriage this would be the small act that kept us united. This simple act of...

Keep Reading

Faith is a Verb, So We Go to Church

In: Faith, Motherhood
Woman and teen daughter in church pew

Every Sunday morning we rush out the door bribing, coaxing, and threatening our kids to just “Get into the van!” Luckily, we live remotely rural so we don’t have neighbors to witness our often un-Christlike eye rolls and harsh sighs as we buckle each other up. We’ve always lived within a five-minute drive to a chapel, and yet we are usually there not two minutes before the service starts. Once sitting in our seats, we’re on high alert for noise control and sibling altercations for the next hour of what is supposed to be a peaceful, sacred, spirit-filled service. Which...

Keep Reading

3 Simple Ways to Be a More Confident Mother

In: Faith, Motherhood
Mother and young child smiling outside

Do you ever ask yourself why you can’t be more like that mom or why can’t your kids be like those kids? The comparison trap is an easy one to fall into if we aren’t careful. At the click of our fingers, we see Pinterest-worthy motherhood in every category. From the mom with the black-belt kids to the mom with Marie Kondo organizing skills—it’s easy to look at their lives and feel like we’ve fallen short. Even worse, is when we start to strive to become something we aren’t or prod our kids to become something they aren’t.  Comparison makes...

Keep Reading

Grief Is Persistent But God Is Faithful

In: Faith, Grief, Loss
Woman praying by ocean

The loss of a parent doesn’t just sting, it leaves you with an irreplaceable hole in your heart. It’s been two years since my loving daddy went home to be with Jesus, and the loss I feel is still unimaginable.  I know in my heart he’s in a better place that is absent of pain and distress. However, his physical presence and wisdom are so dearly missed here on this earth.  He left behind an army of a family who adored him and looked to him for solid guidance. No matter how hard I try to look to the bright...

Keep Reading

I Gave up on God but He Never Gave up on Me

In: Faith, Motherhood
Mother hugging son, color photo

I grew up in a religious house. We went to church every Sunday. My mom taught Sunday school, and we participated as a family in most church events. We believed in the power of prayer, hope, faith, love, and forgiveness. As a little girl, I watched my dad kneel at the side of the bed every night and say his prayers. In the last six years, my faith has not been what it should have been. It has plummeted into the depths of nothingness, buried deep below the darkness. I have felt angry and abandoned by God. In response, I...

Keep Reading

I Count My Blessings Every Day

In: Faith
Mom and child by beach

I remember being jealous of my classmates often. I would look at the girls at my school who seemed to be living such a carefree life. They would do well in school effortlessly and go home to their moms, dads, and siblings, to a house they’d grown up in. I wanted that so much for myself! I wanted my mom and dad to be together, and if it wasn’t too much to ask, a sibling or two. I wanted us to live in a house where I could have my own room, but I wouldn’t mind sharing if I had...

Keep Reading

Dear Lord, Make Me a Grace Hunter

In: Faith
Woman with crutches looking out window, black-and-white photo

I want to be known as a grace hunter. Every day, I pray I would be given eyes to see the world in which we live through a lens of grace—a lens that causes me to marvel at the ways of my God and be constantly filled with wonder. I am thankful I have no choice but to live life at a slower pace. I pray for the ability to see the beauty and God’s grace in the seemingly small and insignificant things. RELATED: In the Midst of Grief, There is Grace I pray for eyes to see His grace even...

Keep Reading

Dear Daughter, Follow Your Beautiful Heart

In: Faith, Kids
Mother and daughter smiling

When I held you in my arms for the first time, it was like time stopped. As you looked up at me with innocence and new life, I was struck by the reality that my main role in your life would be to guide and direct you on the right path. I hoped I would do the best job possible. As I watched you grow, I basked in your joy of putting on your pretty dresses, adorned with layers of costume jewelry, parading around the house for your father and me to see. I dreamed often of what path you...

Keep Reading

So God Made Midnight

In: Faith, Motherhood
Mother and newborn

When God created a mother, He created her to love and serve in every moment. He knew the constant need would sometimes overwhelm her and she would have no choice but to rely on His strength and grace. He knew she would feel like there weren’t enough hours in the day . . . so God made midnight. He knew a mama’s days with a newborn would be busy and sometimes chaotic. He knew she would be distracted by meeting needs and attempting to find balance—that sneaking in a hot shower would become almost a luxury . . . so...

Keep Reading