Helpful Little Hack of the Hour: Introduction and Intent

My precious friends, gather in close for a second. How are you? No really… how are you?

We read each other’s blogs and we interact in the comments. We are able to make incredibly meaningful connections despite our distance and differences of all kinds. And yet I still wonder… is there a way I can be more helpful to you?

Introduction and Intent

I began this blog as a mom whose kids were becoming adults. Not just my own five children, but also the dozens, with no biological relation, who called me “Mama Lava”.

My original tagline was “A Dose of Maternal Love”. I intended to create a “comfy spot”, which I likened to hanging out on my Back Porch. I planned to share recipes and tips, and to encourage the next generation toward Godly living and maturity.

Somewhere along the way, as God knew from the beginning would be the case, my audience expanded. I think the median age of my audience is now closer to mine than my kids. I tried to adapt my approach to align with what God was doing.

I updated my tagline to read “A Place for Rest and Encouragement”. My “Back Porch” became a place of greater reflection. My focus has been to share the joy of the Lord and remind you, my friends, that even in these crazy times, God is always good.

I am so thankful to have this little platform from which I get to bless others with my words. And yet, it is not lost on me that words are just words. I wish there was more I could do.

I’ve been mulling this over for a whole year. I know because I wrote Words or Actions? 3 Reasons Why “Well Done” is Better Than “Well Said” last August. The question I’m wrestling with now is, “What can be done over a blog?”.

I wish I could help you with your chores. It would be fun to cook for you sometimes. I would love to show you some tricks I’ve learned that have made my life easier, and watch you demonstrate yours.

Sun rays bursting upwards and downwards from behind the clouds
The simplest prompt can lead to great inspiration!

Helpful Little Hack of the Hour

Today I had a sort of “ah-ha” moment, courtesy of Jillian Michaels and her fitness app. I logged on to fetch my workout and saw her “tip of the day”. I always like those. They are poignant and practical. Some of them I already know, some I disagree with, some amuse me, and others I find completely life changing.

I’ve decided to start something similar. It won’t be the same as being physically alongside you. But I hope it will be a way for me to pop in and share something I find valuable. Just a helpful little hack of the hour.

Don’t worry, I won’t actually send them every hour. But I do hope to send several in the remaining days of August.

I sincerely believe Jesus is the single, most valuable thing I can share with you. Any time I can testify of His goodness and love I want to do it. If I can encourage you toward Him in any way, that is my greatest intent.

In addition, I’d like to make daily living in this world, easier for you wherever I can. Helpful little hacks are a way to do just that… I hope!

It’s hard to know if an idea is a good one until you’ve tried it. Will you indulge me in this experiment? I’d love to hear your initial thoughts.

Do you like the idea of frequent, shorter posts, each containing a helpful little hack of the hour? Are there certain facets of life for which you could use a few helpful hints and tricks? How can I be more beneficial to you?

Thank you, my precious Back Porch friends. I hope I can add to you even a fraction of the value you bring to my life. You all are – you each are – a tremendous blessing to me!


40 replies on “Helpful Little Hack of the Hour: Introduction and Intent”

Sweet idea. I always need encpuragement- I have a preteen, a floundering in the faith teenager with an unsaved girlfriend rebelling and an angry husband with early stages of dimentia while homeschooling and being active in my church. It is a bit overwhelming at times, I keep giving it to God every day. Prayer for us would be lovely and valuable and cherished. But otherwise, I love your blogs. It is like stopping at a friend’s house for a cup of tea.😃❤️

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That is the best compliment, Tonya! Both the “like stopping at a friend house for a cup of tea” and the trust you’ve shown by sharing your prayer request with me. I will pray for you! Your situation sounds tough. Oh how highly God must think of you, His princess, to put you in charge of all that! I will certainly pray.

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You know, Tonya, as I was praying for you, I felt like God wanted me to encourage you to “Just love them”. Of course, raising children comes with responsibility to mold, shape, set parameters, and mostly disciple… but it is hard for them to process all of if they don’t understand the love of Jesus. And He put you right there to be his love with skin on. It can be hard to love – and show it – to people who are rebellious and angry, but it is kind of a relief too. (I don’t mean to imply that you’re not loving them… I just remember when God told me this – through my mom – and I breathed a big sigh of relief. I can love them. God has me. He has them. He has this!)

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Thank you for this deep encouragement for my soul and heart. It is incredibly practical advice and from the Holy Spirit. Thank you for letting Him speak through you. This is a tool I can use/be.❤️❤️❤️

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Mama Lava I love this idea! I always enjoy reading your posts and I confess that “life hacks” are something I enjoy. Hit me with all the good stuff you know, after all, we were designed to “sharpen” one another both with skillful and Godly wisdom. Wishing you a fabulous day! Leigh

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Thanks, Leigh! I think society has lost the art of sharing practical knowledge somewhat – I barely know my neighbors, let alone my village. I’m sure there are tons of hacks we aren’t sharing just because we aren’t as openly social anymore. I hope to hear yours as I share mine, so let me have them if the inspiration hits 😉 Have a blessed day!

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You’re such a blessing too, Rita! Truth be told, as I start writing my ‘little hacks’, they are not as short as they probably should be. I guess I’m long winded by nature. We’ll see how this goes. And I’m so blessed by your patience with my long posts and slow-loading photos. You’re a true friend.


I’m so sorry! Hopefully the only way tomorrow can be different is to be better! I do know His mercies are new every morning. I pray you sleep well as your mind and body recharge!


Mama Lava, it will be interesting to observe whatever direction you’re guided with your blog.

Regarding “What can be done over a blog?” –– prayer. I find when people express, whether locally or via a blog, that they are praying, comfort and encouragement are received through knowing another in the “family” of Christ has your back. An exception is when it is said as a platitude. Most of us have had those moments with someone when we intuitively sense it is a social graces gesture and ends there. The former offers life-sustaining hope from Heaven.

Thank you for your authentic love. Blessings.

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Good point! Prayer is actually the MOST we can do, right? I know I’ve probably used it as a platitude before. I try not to say “I will” unless I mean it, but, you’re right- it is Christian speak that can sound good to say even when it isn’t sincere. God does burden my heart for certain situations, making it easy to remember to pray for them. I am praying for you this month… whenever o think about my birthday. Incidentally, I prayed for you quite a bit last night because I was talking to my daughter about birthday plans 😉

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Mornin’, Mama Lava. I’m one of those “older kids”… for whom you can come to Anita’s and my kitchen any day of the week!!! We have lots of room, so just call en route and “Well leave a light on fer ya” (per Tom Bodett 🤠). Just make sure we’re not trying out our wings to Norway or Mongolia (next year, we hope).
I prefer longer texts (2000 words or less) with less frequency, but I respect VERY much people who can pack so much more in 100 words than I can in 2000! And your blogs are a delight, as I sense the Spirit of Jesus in them. Your heart seems to align better with His than mine. Prayers always welcome!
❤️& 🙏, c.a.

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I would love to visit you and Anita! If I don’t get to do so in this life, I’ll look up your mansion in glory where He’ll be the light on for us all! Oh what a sight I cannot wait to behold! And I hear you on the longer texts… I’m glad there are people with an affinity for the long-winded, lol! This little experiment will stretch me for sure. I don’t know about 100 words… that is really concise! We shall see… Blessings, my friend!

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My own posts tend to be too long because I like the deep dive in God’s word. It’s my way of capturing what I’m learning and sharing it with whomever is interested. Balance posts between length and depth. Superficial is not generally helpful. Suggest incorporating more scripture as it’s needed today and the best way to show God’s love. But good content, and good heart.

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So appreciate your giving, “What can I do for you” spirit in a predominately “What can you do for me” world Mamalava.

Having been vaccinated with a phonograph needle, verbosity is one of my many faults. Hence, I try to share ‘1,000 word’ pics of His creation on my blog that hopefully speak of His goodness majesty and will hopefully encourage someone, somewhere as He may chose far better than any of my rambling words.

It always blessed when someone responds that it has; has passed it on; or shares a prayer request. Kinda’ a ‘soft evangelism’ however He may direct.

We’re all on this journey of life together sister, and your post’s bless me sister. Thank you.

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