About Me

ASP_9942Welcome to Growing4Life! I am so glad you stopped by. I don’t claim to be a biblical scholar or anything special. I just love the Lord and His Word and hope that this little blog will turn my readers towards Him and help them grow in their desire to know His Word.

My husband, Eric, and I were married in 1988, after meeting in college. I have spent much of the past years dedicated to raising (and home-schooling) the four wonderful kids that God graciously entrusted to us. Gradually the “birdies” in our nest starting getting married and then having their own children. These precious gifts are true delights and blessings to our souls! We love being grandparents! Our child-raising years officially came to their final close in March of 2022, as the last of our four children got married and headed off to build her own nest with her new husband.

And so we start a new phase of life. We are enjoying the opportunity to reconnect in both marriage and friendship as we work together in our landscaping business, which Eric started in 1987. We are deeply committed to Jesus Christ and to each other.

I started the blog in 2010 with no aspirations. My kids didn’t need me near as much and I found myself with some extra time on my hands. My daughter had started a blog and I thought, “hey, I like to write. Maybe this would be a fun thing to do.” That’s how it got started.

For a few years, I put just a bit of effort into growing this tiny blog (which had just over 100 subscribers) and then, one day, I heard a pastor talk about how he has committed his increase to the Lord. I reflected on his words and decided to do this very same thing. I was not after popularity (truth is rarely popular and I am committed 100% to God’s Word and the truth within its pages) and so I just decided to let the increase–if there were any– up to God.

In 2012, a couple of years after I had begun blogging, I wrote a post in just a few minutes regarding something that had happened at a basketball game I had attended. The post went kind of viral but not much came of it. Three years later, in 2015, in October, for whatever reason (I never did find out), it went crazily viral. The blog grew and grew from this. Suddenly, it was reaching people all around the world in so many different countries. I was shocked, to say the least. And also extremely uncomfortable. Did I really want to give that many “strangers” a glimpse of my personal life?? It was my mom who finally calmed me down with these words: Just keep doing what you have been doing. Yes. God had opened up a door. I must walk through it. I knew He had opened it because I had done NOTHING to increase my readership.

Since then, I have tried to faithfully communicate God and His Word to my readers. I have written some hard things. I have written many unpopular things. And, sometimes, even some wrong things–which I have had to go back and correct! But, through it all, my only desire is to please God and to encourage you, my reader, to grow in your knowledge of His Word. I hope that you will find this blog an encouragement to you as we journey together to our eternal home in Heaven.

Here are a few personal details about me–

I love to read. I especially love to read old classics that pull no punches about the Christian life. I also love to read missionary biographies. These, by far, have been the most challenging to my status quo Christianity. I also love to read books that teach me about history. I know that I will never be able to read all of the books I want to in my lifetime, but I keep chipping away at it, one book at a time. You will find a few of my favorite books here.

I love flowers and am so very thankful that God created these colorful symbols of life. I find their beauty inspiring, whether they are from my garden, a florist, or even on a painting. I enjoy photography (at a very amateur level) and especially love capturing shots of family, flowers, and the sky, which I find to be an amazing canvas of God’s creativity almost every day. And I can’t imagine life without music. I love to play and sing music, as well as to listen to it. Godly music is a true balm to my soul. It builds up and encourages. It comforts and provides solace. God has taken me on quite a journey to understand the music that pleases Him. Peace came when I finally surrendered this part of my life to my Lord. You can read more about that here.

But my great love is writing. Using words to express thoughts has always been a great love of mine. And so this blog is the fruit of that love. I am dedicated to speaking the Truth of God’s Word with love and grace. My prayer is that God will use this blog to encourage and challenge fellow believers,  just as I am often encouraged and challenged by so many of you.

Thanks for stopping by–




(Updated June, 2022)






68 thoughts on “About Me”

  1. I’ve enjoyed reading several of your posts, and look forward to reading even more. God has gifted you…please continue to share that gift with the world! May God bless you, your marriage, your children, and generations yet to come!

  2. Hey Leslie! I have enjoyed your blogs…plus keeping up with your family. Do you ever speak at women’s events? We always do a distict event in the fall (60-70 women) and just wondered if you might be an option for us. Tell Eric hi for us.


    1. Hi :) So nice to hear from you! Thank so much for your encouragement. I actually do speak at women’s events so just let me know if you are interested and we can talk about it — and catch up a little, too!

      1. I thought I read that somewhere on the blog. We have a meeting this weekend. If its okay with you I’ll print off a few of your posts to share.

  3. Thanks for allowing us to share in such a memorable and spiritual wedding . Love your blog. Will be praying for the newly weds as well as you and your so wonderful family God bless each of you. Love Nana and Papa Smith.

    1. I am so very glad you could come all the way from California! It was such a blessing to meet you both! I may turn up out there in California one of these days with Dawn :) You just never know! haha

  4. Thank you for your inspiration. I happened across your blog looking for another site and so blessed that I did. 15 minutes was the blog and oh my if that didn’t speak to me!!! I love how God works like this!! I was literally just talking with my husband last night about making changes for the new year and all the things I wanted to accomplish. Your blog felt like God was confirming that and was telling me to just give it 15 minutes a day!!! I read that if you listen to an audio of the Bible for 15 min a day that you can listen to the entire Bible in a year. I suppose the same would be true for reading. Again thank you, and thank God. I love your blogs, how real and encouraging!!!

  5. Christy Schrock Eichelberger

    Leslie — what a blessing to find your blog.. as a shared blog from my cousin on facebook. The world gets smaller!!! What a wonderful family you have since last seeing you in 86 at Grace. Blessings to you and Eric!!

    1. Hi Christy! I am so glad you took the time to comment. How are you doing? What have you been up to? It’s so hard to believe that it’s been 30 years since our Grace days, isn’t it?

  6. Thank you for all the posts you have put on here regarding people using OMG. I agree with you wholeheartedly and have reprimanded friends and family who have done this. It bothers me when I hear it or read it somewhere and i cannot back down on my Christian beliefs and must take a stand when I need too! I am sorry if I offend anyone but I must stand for my God because He has always been there for me.
    God bless you for what you do!

    1. I don’t criticize the unsaved, either, but I am sure concerned for their souls. The Bible tells us that no man can come unto the Father, except through Jesus. (John 14:6) If we honestly believe this is true, then the most loving thing we can do is point them to the truth.

      And, yes, He does judge us. For you to say God doesn’t judge you would mean that you don’t know scripture very well or perhaps you don’t believe that the Bible is the inspired, inerrant Word of God. Here are some verses for you to consider as you do your own study–

      2 Corinthians 5:10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.

      John 9:38-39 He said, “Lord, I believe,” and he worshiped him. Jesus said, “For judgment I came into this world, that those who do not see may see, and those who see may become blind.”

      John 16:7-9 Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: concerning sin, because they do not believe in me.

  7. Hello Leslie, I just came across your website and look forward to receiving your writings through email. I am a homeschooling Mom also. We are preparing our older son for his Senior year of high school and our younger son for Freshman year! Wow! Thank you for your messages!

  8. Hi ran across your blog and was blessed and encouraged! Please keep on sharing and sounding the trumpet of truth! Those who love truth and want to “walk in the light as He is in the light” will seemingly always be outnumbered by those who don’t..maybe until that great day when we all realize who THE TRUTH is.Anyway it’s wonderful and inspiring to read your thoughts.And thank-you for the references to scripture on the bottom.That really is the “bottom line”…love you! a sister in the Lord, Marian

  9. Leslie: I am new to your blog. But, thank you so much for posting about people using omg. This is something that I have taught my 12 year old from the start that we do not use God’s name in vain. We try very hard to make sure that we don’t use any slang terms. For our family this is just not an acceptable. So it truly hurts my heart and causes me to cringe when I hear others doing this. I truly enjoy your blog. Thanks for all you do. Blessings,
    Cathy Maddox

  10. I saw your writings on omg through a share from a friend of mine at church. Thank you so much for addressing this topic. I too cringe when I hear this used especially by my nieces & nephews. I lack courage to talk to them about it. They were raised in a Christian home & it confounds me with their continual use of those words/initials. OMG does not mean “oh my goodness”. May I suggest using Oh My Word (omw) if anyone is looking for a more appropriate phrase. Again I thank you.

  11. What a wonderful post!!! I have often talked to my kids about their “bad language”. For some it does some good, but to others it “Oh,Mom!!” Thank you for putting this on FB. I am 87 yrs old and I hope I see all my children know Christ before I leave this earth!!!

  12. I have just discovered your blog and so far it is great.I thank you so much for the posting and look forward to more.
    God bless you.

  13. Hi Leslie! I found you after a friend posted your current blog on Facebook (which I wholeheartedly agree with!), and love your blog–seems we are kindred spirits! I have four grown children and 7 grandchildren–and my daughter and son-in-law gave me three who live in Madagascar as missionaries! I love to read, write, and photograph everything from grandbabies to the wildlife and wildflowers in my yard! You can find me @ wateringcanblog.com –hope you stop by!

  14. I totally enjoy reading your posts. I have learned so much about the people that are teaching false doctrine. I am glad to know that you are writing things to open my eyes to truth. ThANk you for talking about God the way you do.

  15. Teresa Worthington

    I really appreciated this article! Our pastor speaks on the purpose of the church and how it’s not to entertain the”goats” but to feed the sheep. I relate to you in several ways. I was married in 1988, and my husband and I ran a lawn care business for 20+ years. We have 3 children and 6 1/2 grandchildren. A friend of mine on Facebook shared this post and I shared it as well. Thank you for your clear explanation on this current problem in the church today. Blessings.

    1. We do have a lot in common! I love “meeting” other believers through the blog. And thank you for your comment. There are few pastors who understand biblical ecclesiology anymore so it always encouraging to hear there are still some out there :)

  16. Hi Leslie. Commenting here because I couldn’t find a way to comment on your recent post about Bible reading. Love the format of reading through the Epsitles by reading the same chapters for five days. Would like to read through the Gospels this way with my children. Do you happen to have a PDF plan for reading the Gospels? Have searched online but can’t find this format. Thank you!

    1. Hi Shellie– I am so sorry about not being able to comment on that post. I just fixed it, so hopefully that opens up the opportunity for comments should anyone else want to. I don’t personally have a pdf for a reading of the Gospels in this way but I can check with my pastor who put one together for us last year. Why don’t you send me an email to leslie@growing4life.net so that I can just email it to you? Will that work?

  17. Just found you…have never really followed blogs but like your writings and message, I’m hooked. Don’t live far from you. Do you speak to groups?

    1. Thanks so much! I’m honored :) and, yes, I have done some speaking. You can email me at Leslie {at} growing4life {dot} net if you’d like to know more :) (replace the at and the dot with the appropriate symbols).

  18. Very good…the subject and your style of writing….you keep doing…I’ll keep praying, and also remember me as I pastor a missionary baptist church and have for about 40 years

    1. Thank you! Glad to have you here! It is my greatest desire that you will find that any truth I share is always aligned with the Word of God. I desire nothing more than to draw people back to the Word :)

  19. Linda Minner Stevens

    Hi Leslie! I just “met” you today when a friend shared your post re: what the Bible says about OMG. My first thought was hallelujah, a kindred soul! Thank you so much for your article – I immediately added my 2 cents to it and shared it on my FB timeline. I’m looking forward to reading more of your posts!

    1. I am not sure what you mean? Did you read my “About Me” page? I don’t make any mention of pastoring. In fact, I believe the Bible teaches that I could never be a pastor as woman. You can find out more about us above.

  20. Hi, Leslie! I’m deeply thankful to the LORD for a few trusted sources online–yours, Michelle Lesley’s blog, Tim Challies, The Narrowing Path, Theology Gals, to name a few. Glad to know you a bit better; you’ve been blessed with a lovely family. (Please pray for our family, though, as we go through some major decisions and trials.) With prayers of blessing upon you, and warm greetings from the Philippines (yes! You have an Asian fan–though by blood, I’m a bit of a funny mix of Malay, Chinese, and Spanish, with a Jewish ancestor tucked somewhere, haha!) :-)

  21. Hello Leslie. My name is Cathy Hooper. I am a pastor’s wife and we are looking for speakers for our women’s group. Our ladies have been so encouraged by your posts. We would love to speak with you about coming to our church.

  22. Thank you for that Article about saying “OMG”…I want to also say that I was convicted a couple of years ago of using the phases “HOLY” – Cow; “Holy” mackeral; “Holy” – Jumping Jehosophat; “Holy” – crap….ANYTHING that uses “HOLY” except in the context of how HOLY our God is or talking about the HOLY SPIRIT…If people also realize that the Trinity is “God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit” Then using “HOLY” in any other context is no different than OMG…or people that use Jesus name as a swear word or say G-darn it…

  23. I loved reading your blog on OMG. I too have a love for God’s Word and just started a blog in the fall. I have a speaking ministry and will be leading a retreat this weekend called “Time Out for Holiness” I hope you don’t mind but I will be reading your blog – I will be talking about the 10 Commandments and it fit right in as food for thought! May God continue to use you! In His Service, Nancy Smith

  24. Hi, Leslie. I just read your post about ‘Not’ using OMG and I am thankful that someone has written about it. I shared it on our church facebook page Marine Baptist Church. Do you know of any other articles on this subject? Thank you, John Phillips

  25. I want to thank you for the wonderful time I had listening to you speak about our Lord, and the ease with which you conveyed the information you brought to our church at Corbin City Baptist. What a joy to fellowship with you and learn more about our love for the Lord and each other. Thank you again so very much, please keep up the good work.

  26. Hi, I’m Sarah, I love your blog, it has helped me a lot. I’m wondering if I can use parts of your blog to share with my bible study group
    And do you have anything to share about love, like Valentines.
    Thanks in advance sarah doerksen

    1. Hi Sarah. Thanks you! I appreciate your encouraging words so very much. I don’t have any specific posts about Valentine’s Day but I do have a few posts about marriage and love. Here are a few links but you may be able to find more if you click on the words “marriage” and “love” on the word cloud about halfway down the home page :)

      Hope these help–




  27. I found you through an online friend on Facebook. So glad I did! I’ve enjoyed reading a few of your posts. The few I have read, I agree with 100%! Blessings to you as you write!

  28. Hello Leslie,

    I’m so thankful that God led me to your blog. I was searching for some information to prove my concerns while watching The Chosen. Thank you for sharing your and your daughter’s post so that I can avoid things that distracts me from the Word of God.

    May God bless you! Really enjoy wandering around this little garden of yours!

    In Christ!

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