About the Author

Now graduated from her role as a homeschooling mom of 8, Dawn Camp devotes her time and love of stories to writing her first novel. She enjoys movie nights, cups of Earl Grey, and cheering on the Braves. She and her husband navigate an ever-emptying nest in the Atlanta suburbs.

(in)side DaySpring: things we love
& you will too!
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(in)side DaySpring:
things we love
& you will too!
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Reader Interactions


  1. Dawn,
    This world would be a kinder place if we, as you said, took the time to revel in what we love about others (particularly those we love). Sadly, I catch myself doling out words of criticism to those that I love the most. Why are we more gracious with our words to strangers than to our own family? I pray that God would cause me to bite my tongue when critical words are about to come out and that I would be a person defined by what I love instead of what I hate or dislike. Thanks for a poignant reminder!

  2. This was SO convicting and much needed this morning. Thank you for the reminder that we are to be defined by our LOVE and nothing else. Thank you!!

  3. As a Gator lover, I can relate on the other end of that spectrum! Not only is it easy to be identified with what we hate, it’s easy to be identified with what we love. Too many times I have allowed myself to be defined by the gifts I’ve received and not by The Giver. It is a never-ending temptation and choice.

  4. Thank you so much for this post! You see, this song has been singing in my heart for months. I have been living apart from my family periodically while my young son is in the hospital (7 months). As I have gone through this experience, I have been faced with the ugliness of whether or not I am encouraging the positive qualities of my spouse and children, or emphasizing the negative. It is never easy to look inward, but when I do, I feel better. I feel free. And it is so nice to read your post and know that I am not alone in what I have been working on. For months, everyday when i wake up, I’ve been asking the Lord to open my heart, and I try to remember that only he can heal the wounds in my heart. Spending time with the Lord on purpose has also helped. I know I have to surround myself with positive thoughts and positive people in order to have the strength in my situation. Blessings to you!!

    • Angela, what a difficult time for you! It sounds like the Lord is using this time of separation to convict and heal you. Blessings to your family.

  5. That perfectly sums up how I feel about one of the most polarizing topics in our world today: abortion.

    All the hatred being thrown around on the battleground of pro-life vs. pro-choice has distracted us from what we REALLY need to do. Love. The most vocal pro-life groups (or at least the ones getting the most media attention) are the ones condemning abortion. It’s no wonder we have so many women in the church who had abortions in the past who are hiding that part of their story in shame and fear that they will be rejected.

    But you know what this whole thing needs? Love. Women who have had abortions need love and compassion. They were alone, and scared, and felt like they had nowhere else to go, no other choice. They need a place to heal. And how about instead of viciously fighting to end abortion at a government level or protesting outside clinics with graphic pictures, we create places where women and girls in crisis pregnancy situations can go and feel safe and supported. Because let’s be honest – we’re probably not going to see abortion end before Christ returns. And in the meantime, there are wounded, frightened women out there who need a sanctuary. Who need love. The enemy has got the church so distracted by the hatred that we have lost sight of love.

    We’ll never forget the babies who have already been lost – but let’s remember, vengeance is the Lord’s. He will avenge those little lives. We, the church, need to care for the walking wounded. The mothers.

  6. Thank you Dawn for these words! To be known as people of Love…it’s my heart’s desire. And thank you, Melissa, speaking with much grace about this difficult subject. As one who is walking wounded, quietly and fearfully, for 37 years…I have shared about my great sadness only very carefully. As a pastor’s wife, my choice from years ago has been kept well protected from public view because of the fear of judgement from others. Yet…God has brought others who have been wounded in this same way…right into my life. In our very small church I have 3 dear friends who had their first babies as teens, who made a different choice than I. And 3 others who made the same desperate choice. Another friend was herself a pre born baby whose mother was considering abortion but the doctor persuaded her to continue the pregnancy. We need a safe place where we can talk about these painful choices…& God calls us miraculously together, as He has done in my life, to listen and touch each other’s hearts…so that healing may finally be completed. Praising Him for His mercy…in my life and in so many other wounded hearts.

  7. Thank you so much Dawn for that much needed reminder. I so many times need to take heed to the words of wisdom in James 3 about the ‘tongue’. The end of the Chapter says: “But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure: then peace loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. Peacmakers who sow in peace raise a harvest of righteousness.”
    Oh to be a ‘peacemaker and an encourager’. Yes, I need to guard my tongue and my heart!

  8. I live in an area that has a major sports/state rivalry, and it annoys me to NO END when my husband participates in it. (OFTEN.) I realize I “don’t get it” because I’m not a huge sports fan…but what you’re saying here is what I’ve thought. About him. … But…um…have I bothered to question myself? Nope. Thanks for making me think this morning, Dawn! It’s way easier to point fingers than it is to examine my own heart…which I definitely need to do!

    • Mary, I remember hiding as a child while my parents and grandparents watched Razorbacks’ games on TV. It scared me! Yes, people get awfully involved in their teams. I had a 96-year-old aunt with a love for the Braves and a passionate dislike for Barry Bonds. I guess we just have to keep perspective and maybe not customize our license plates with what we hate (I’m waiting for someone who lives close to me to tell me they know the driver of that car!). πŸ™‚

  9. As a teacher I need to remember this and make this my goal. Too often the kids I teach are only told how bad they are…I pray I don’t fall into the habit of only seeing the bad. Thanks for sharing!

    • Cheryl, I substituted a few times many years ago, and it was always easy to spot the kids who’d been told (probably both at home and school) that they were bad. Those kids were so eager for attention and a fresh pair of eyes to see some good in them.

  10. Dawn, such truth here. Let us not be defined by what we hate (or fear or misguidingly obsess over). Thanks for pointing out that just a slight change of perspective can make a world of difference in our walk.

  11. Love the desktop calendar πŸ™‚ Thanks for sharing that. And your words ring true. We know that we must guard our words and use them to lift up and encourage, but do we watch our facial expressions, our gestures and our body language? The only line I don’t necessarily agree with is the “interesting to say” vs “listening with full attention” – if we were all just a bunch of listeners, what would we listen to? I don’t think it’s necessarily a bad thing to be known for what we say, as long as we keep it balanced with listening to others. πŸ™‚ Happy Wendesday, Dawn!

  12. Dawn, I so needed this today. THANK YOU! I think I’ve stumbled into the territory of being known for what I’m against in the past few weeks. Not intentionally, but at the very least I don’t think people are seeing the joy I say I live with. Thanks for sharing this. It’s been a teachable moment for me for sure. Loved your story and how it spoke straight to me!

  13. This is so timely for me. My prayer is that I leave people with nothing less than kindness and positive thoughts. THANK YOU!!

  14. So true. Jesus said that others would know us by our love, but often the church is characterized more by what we’re against. We have to stand for truth, but I think our goal should be more to promote love and justice. We’re supposed to be seed planters, not weed pullers. Plant enough seed and the weeds don’t have room to grow. Thanks for the reminder!

  15. Dawn, your post is exactly along the lines of what I have been asking God to help me accomplish in my life these past few weeks. To bring about a greater awareness of my critical spirit, so that I will stop and consider all the goodness, and joy each person brings to my life. I have been making a conscious effort (and it hasn’t always been easy), to find, and focus, on the things I love about others, rather than correcting them, or finding fault.

    I don’t know when loving less became more normal to me than loving others as Christ loves me. I have grieved over this for several weeks now. It is a struggle. There has been a major change in my life (involving family), along with a move, health issues and overall stressors. None of these issues constitute this negative behavior. Jesus never acts this way toward us, no matter the circumstance. So, I certainly have no right to act this way with others. Especially those I love dearly.

    Thank you, Dawn for this post. I will continue to work on my ‘stinkin’ thinking’ allowing God to mold me again into a vessel whose fragrance is sweet.


  16. It’s always extremely interesting to acknowledge that a spiritual awakening & through growth starts exactly from the place or situation in all of us (human beings) are passing more,or less through our every days life….
    The one very important message we should revile from that is that the light force of the creator always wants to give us everything all the time in every aspect in life & we “human beings” are blocking the manifestation of that all to come through by our reactive behavior we are led to from that “for self along” way of behaving….the real true behaving is to “proact” to any& every situation & challenge the the light force of the universe gives us….because there is a reason for everything that happens in our lives when we “LOOK AT THE BIG PICTURE OF OUR LIVES”. .

  17. This post was like reading my mind all month long! I needed to know that other felt the same way. There are times that you (I) feel like I am the only one feeling this way! I wish it could be like a fly and I could just shoo it away πŸ™‚

    God Bless

  18. Hi Dawn, It is so easy to be critical of others and not envelope them in love. Used to be friends with someone and quite truthfully we were quite often critical of others. We used to put others down for things that we thought were so important. I stepped back and said I didn’t like being this way. I did not like the way I acted and if I didn’t I was pretty sure God wasn’t exactly thrilled either. I stopped being so friendly with the other person because I didn’t like the way I acted around her. She is still the same way but I have changed and the person I am responsible for is me. I can’t alter other persons behavior but I can mine. Am trying to be kinder and more loving of others.
    Dawn, thank you for the post. By the way I am 65 and if I can change so can anyone else. You can teach an old dog new tricks.

  19. Good thoughts! I think I’m always wanting to use every opportunity to teach or try to figure out what im supposed to learn when actually it may just be that I’m to be listening. So I did see my self (gasp is right) in these lists. I too agree with Joann that as we age we tend to grow as a Christian and I often find myself slipping and my friend and I will just pray for the situation instead of talk about it. It does help too.

  20. Dawn,
    I appreciate how you turned this seemingly insignificant moment of your day into something powerful. Your prayer and these two words — “ever teachable” struck me. This is my prayer too. Thanks for writing, Ruth

  21. It still amazes me, how when God brings has something He wants to teach me, I start hearing it from so many different places! Our pastor was just teaching on Sunday about the power of words– power to either build up or tear down. We have the opportunity each day to choose both our attitude and what we will do with our words. I am trying to choose words that give life, especially in the lives of those closest to me! Thank you for your words, Dawn, that encourage us to celebrate the good and the positive in our lives, and in the people God has placed around us.

  22. Dawn,
    My husband and I are Razorback fans, but some of the more sedate ones! I try to have a greeting card ministry with my friends and church members. I send cards for birthdays, anniversaries, when illness strikes, or just to cheer someone up! I always take the time to send hand written thank you notes, even when my arthritic hands are protesting! Doing these things takes my mind off of me!

  23. It is oh so easy to spew out hatred for this or that–be it good or bad. We should, as Christians, be spreading love & especially God’s love for all!

    Our women’s Bible study is all about the power of a Women’s Words. What we say, tone & loudness of our voice when vocalized. We should try to say the same things in a more loving caring way. “You catch more flies with honey than vinegar”. So sweeten your words.