About the Author

Anna works full-time for DaySpring from Minnesota, where she lives with her husband and four kids. Anna is the author of A Moment of Christmas and Pumpkin Spice for Your Soul, and she shares the good stuff of the regular, encouraging you to see the ordinary glory in your everyday.

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things we love
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Reader Interactions


  1. Anna,
    Simply beautiful!! I’m just the opposite, so I find myself apologizing when I’m yawning at 8 pm. I also grew up in a home where emotions weren’t worn on your sleeve. I endured a lot of teasing because I was the first one to cry at something…anything. I’ve even cried during Hallmark commercials lol. Lately, I’ve been listening to a wonderful song by Christian artist Tauren Wells. It’s called “Known”. The chorus reassures, “I am fully known and loved by You.” It is so freeing to know that God sees us and knows our heart (inside and out); He sees our flaws and foibles and STILL He loves us. Yes, let’s stop apologizing and ban the word “sorry” when false guilt rises. Let’s celebrate that we are fearfully and wonderfully made! Loved this and reading while I sipped my anti-troll serum 🙂
    Bev xx

    • I needed to hear these words today. A reminder of what nearly everyone close to me tells me not to do-apologize for the small things. Constantly I say “I’m sorry” and really never know exactly the reason. For being me. I often feel ashamed of me. From past trauma to nothing much at all I feel so unworthy of “being.” Thank you for Sharing your heart and truthful story of who we really are-a child of the most High God.

      • Debra,
        I can relate to a lot of the words and feelings you are expressing. I never thought I was okay just as I am. I apologized a lot and wished I was more like (fill in the blank). Some of that was being in a verbally abusive marriage. I am learning to stop apologizing and letting God love me exactly how he made me. If there would be one thing I’d say to you it’s, “Just be Debra.” Just as you are….not even an eentsy change. God created you fearfully and wonderfully to be exactly how you are. If you were even the littlest bit different, you wouldn’t be you and God has a plan for you just as He created you. He doesn’t make mistakes. You are a daughter of the King – loved just as you are. You are more than enough!!
        ((Hugs)) sweet sister,
        Bev xo

  2. Anna, when those kids are all teens, and you are managing curfews and overnights and kids with actual driver’s licenses, you are gonna ROCK the stay-up-late-and-chat-with-the-wired-teenager-mum role, because the circadian rhythm you have described is perfect for that! When my football playing boy came home after an away game and a 5 hour bus-ride, he always wanted to do a blow-by-blow recap of his day, and I really wanted to listen, but when one has been up and pawing the earth since 5 a.m., one is not one’s best self at 11 p.m. It sounds to me as if you and your husband are a great parenting team!

  3. Anna – thank you! And I agree with Bev and Michele. I am the opposite…can’t stay up much past 8pm and am unloading the dishwasher and cleaning my shower at 4am. My three teenagers get exasperated that I can’t stay up past 8 or 9pm at the latest!! And I have lots of mom guilt about it. Thanks for the reminder that this is who I was made to be and I’m fearfully and wonderfully made 🙂

  4. Anna,
    I enjoyed the story about how different we all are. One body with several members. Thank God He made us all different. It’s the differences that makes us unique and wonderfully made in His image. I am the morning person who is down by ten o’clock .

  5. Anna,

    What a great post! I’m so thankful that we are all fearfully and wonderfully made by our loving God!

    I’m the granddaughter of a farmer, and I loved (still do!) waking up at the crack of dawn to the sounds of roosters and the beauty of a sunrise. My sister, however, was the night owl, ready to greet midnight with a smile!

    What a loving God we serve! Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow! We are all unique and bring something different and equally wonderful to The Lord’s bountiful table. <

    Joy in Jesus,

    • Loved this comment, Lara! Thank you so much for sharing a part of your story — and for referencing the beautiful Doxology. I grew up singing that before meals and we still do.

  6. This!! H k you for this! I find myself in the same boat many days usually on Saturdays when I just want to lay in bed. Thank you for not making me feel like a bad mom. The guilt is still there but it is something I guess we all have to work on. Again thank you!

  7. Loved this!! We call this in my family being a nighthawk. I have been like this forever and even more so since I have gotten older. It seems my mind and energy levels really start flowing at 8pm and stop around 1am. When our son was in school the house was quiet after 10pm and so began the let get this or that done, creative projects or catching up with family in the west and southwest after we moved to North Carolina years ago. No interruptions!! Yes I am up and can be up and at them early and function but I am wired for late night. No more guilt feelings for thinking I should have been up earlier when I don’t but just go with it and keep it moving!

    • Ooh I love that word Nighthawk. So love that you shared a little of who you are, and that we’re wired in much the same way. No more guilt!

  8. Please unsubscribe me! Your messages are great! Don’t get me wrong!
    I just don’t have time for this! I am truly enjoying th Passion Translation Bible at this time. Vivian Balfour

    • Hi Vivian,
      You can unsubscribe yourself easy-peasy! At the bottom of any email you receive from (in)courage or DaySpring, it says, ‘unsubscribe here’. Click that and you’re good to go.

  9. Anna,
    I’m the opposite, and like you, my husband is the late riser. but unlike your husband, occasionally I’m not as understanding. I appreciate from your post the reminder that I need to try harder to be. We were all created different and those differences can help us work better as a team.
    Have a blessed day all,

  10. Thanks Anna!
    I get judge constantly by my family for this and even with Lupus and Fibromyalgia they don’t understand! Your lucky to have a spouse who understands!

  11. Awesome post! I am always so critical of myself, and this put things into perspective.

  12. Beautiful post! People are always telling me to stop apologizing for myself all the time. I have recently learned to replace “sorry” with “thank you” as well. I’m also a night owl who struggles to stay awake during the day due to chronic fatigue. However, this is nothing to be ashamed of. It often leads to creative genius 🙂

    • Hi Emily,
      I too am a night owl, but have to be at work at 7:30 am (who picked this job?–it is nice being done at 3:30 though.) I also struggled to stay alert and awake during the day and never woke refreshed. It got so bad I had to nap every day after work and had constant muscle pain. Then I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia and realized that I wasn’t getting restful sleep because my nerves were firing too many times (even though I slept through the night, my sleep wasn’t quality.) I’m now using a prescription for fibro at night that gives me quality sleep and turmeric (decreases inflammation) during the day. Along with a healthier diet, I can now stay awake all day and be on task! I pray that you can explore reasons for your chronic fatigue and find some good solutions. You are too young to perpetually live with it. Blessings!

  13. This is just too funny Anna! I am the exact opposite! When I was raising my family (great-grandmother now!), I was the one who was up at 5 or 6a–telling my husband and son to “rise and shine” for it’s a new day! Those were times when I lived in the Midwest. Now I’m on Pacific time–I get to watch the sun rise!…and it’s beautiful EVERY morning! My body is still on East Coast time!

  14. Hi Anna, from a fellow Anna. God bless you for writing this. It took until around the time I was turning 40 for me to accept me. A dear family member told me” you can only be you” God spoke thru her that day and that blessed me it was the beginning of me seeing what Gods sees and loving it. I haven’t arrived. Some days He has to put me in check again but I’m really embracing who He made me to be. God bless you all

  15. Anna – this was such a joy to read. I am happy to hear that I am not alone in my love/need for sleeping in and doing household chores, crafting, re-arranging furniture, etc. at all hours of the night, lol…I have had several people over the years try to lay a guilt trip on me because I wasn’t up with the sun on Saturday mornings with kids, or cleaning the house or doing whatever a Mom was “supposed” to be doing. But I didn’t give in to their pressure. At times it would make me think to myself, is there something wrong with me for being this way? But like you, my husband was ok with my sleeping habits . He is an early bird so I feel like God gave us each other for balance. Thank you for sharing your wisdom.

    • I’ve had those thoughts as well, Christine, right down to the ‘what’s wrong with me’ and the gratitude for my husband who complements and balances me out. What a gift! So glad you shared your story here too.

  16. Thanks so much for sharing this – I am the opposite and I needed to hear these words to let go of my notion that my style of up before the sun is any better than your style of thriving at night. Appreciate your truths how God made us all exactly the way he intended and we can praise Him for that instead of judging or feeling bad.

    • Oh Jenny, how I appreciate your honesty and openness here! Thank you for taking the time to read and to let the words sink into your heart. I’m very grateful for your comment.

  17. Why must we put so much pressure on ourselves? So many expectations that we (apparently) make up our own blessed selves out of guilt, comparison, fear. Amen a thousand times for not apologizing for who we are. 🙂 (This reminds me, I just finished reading Kelly Balarie’s _Battle Ready_ yesterday, and something she addressed in there was—instead of saying “I’m sorry for…,” say “Thank you for your grace with me for…,” etc. (Not exact quote and I can’t remember which pages, but thought you might appreciate that re-framing technique. I liked that. 🙂 ) P.S.) You will be in heaven once your kiddos hit their teen years—you can’t get those younguns out of bed early for anything when they’re teens! 🙂 Something to look forward to. 🙂 ((hug))

  18. Anna, you could have been describing me to a tee!!! Husband, kids, mom, all of it except maybe the music choices and Netflix. LOL I think this is why I have to practice enjoying grace because it comes more naturally to feel guilty than it does to say thank You and move forward, flaws and all. I’ve never read a piece like this before. I usually read about the early risers and think, “I’m happy for them, but my body is wired totally differently!” Thanks for letting me know I’m not alone. May you be blessed for sharing this. Hugs!

  19. I’m geared toward night too, and I have heard just about everything, even that I shouldn’t eat so late, I can go to sleep after bowl of chili in peace, no problem but have indigestion from stress and noise, sometimes you can’t turn off the day. Night has a peace to it, the dark sacred night, and I think to myself, ” What a wonderful world. ” No apologies needed.

  20. I’m such a bergen before coffee!! I used to be a night owl, but turned over to early bird status and love it now. I never thought I could wake up early. Each day is a gift and we all need to own who we are without guilt!! Loved your message!

  21. Thank you for that post! This year I will be 70 and it’s taken me about that long to not feel (very) apologetic about my circadian rhythm. Now that I can have a choice about the time I wake, it fluctuates greatly, but I usually am up much later than most people. Feeling apologetic is instilled at a very early age, if we go to a school and when we must work “standard” hours. I’ve never understood why I could put in more hours, many on my own time, than early bird co-workers and get at much or more done than many yet be called lazy because I arrive later than most.The person who penned that axiom about the early bird getting the worm was accurate but I wish he wasn’t. My criteria for needing to be concerned has changed. Now I ask, ” Am I there when I am needed? Am I there when I promised to be?” I’ve also learned to be understanding of myself when I make appointments and plans. God had to to make us this way with a specific purpose in mind and that’s always comforted me.

    • Janet! I love this whole comment! Your criteria is spot on, and I’m so glad you get the chance to lean into your own natural rhythms. What a gift.

  22. I sooooooo love this! After soooooooo many years of not appreciating who I am and scolding myself……this is me…..for my family and friends…..and God made us all who we are. Sleeping in….or being too loud.,.or being bossy….this is me.

  23. Thank you for this beautiful reminder of Who made us and how He made us and to not apologize for it, even all our quirks. I too often feel like i should wake up at 5 am and be productive and have my quiet time in before the kiddos wake up but that’s just not me…i am better in the evening. For 6 years I worked night shift as a nurse in a hospital so that tendency still sticks a bit even 8 years after being done working that shift. Great message Anna! Thank you!

  24. Anna,

    My hubby & I are constantly apologizing for who we are. Due to work schedules he is more the stay up late & sleep in guy on days off I yawn around 9-10. He happens to be a geeky introvert who loves being alone on his computer. I want him with me. I’m the emotional huger. Always wanting to snuggle on the couch. We are vastly different in many ways, but they say opposites attract. I believe God sent this great man to me. We are learning to give each other what we need. I’m going to stop apologizing for the woman God made me to be & start appreciating the man God gave me. God made us each unique. He isn’t surprised at all by who we are & what we do. My motto for years has been “if you don’t like me, tough-talk to God. He is the one who made me.”

    Blessings 🙂

  25. Wow! Thank you for this, I needed it today!
    Too often I apologize, as all Moms probably do, for being me. I have a good friend who is always informing me of my daughters actions and things she says, and I started feeling like I have to apologize for her now! Well, I’m done! I just want to go through life as me and how I want. My husband never apologizes for being himself, which I admire. He has always been confident in his decisions and our family. I am living an imperfectly perfect life which I will embrace and thank God everyday for it! I am compassionate, cry easily, laugh a lot, happy and enjoy staying up late to read. Thank you for reminding me of the gifts God gave me and to view them as such! God Bless!

  26. Anna, lately I feel pretty good before I go to bed around 11ish o’clock. More so than when I get up in a.m. and get ready for work. How did I get up early growing up on a farm and being in the military? Lazy afternoon today with watching tv and nobody here. Too hot outside to do a few things outdoors. I liked to stay up late when my children were younger so I could write letters…before the internet. Homeschooling made life busy then. But God loves me anyway and helps me thru each day. I’m thankful for the life He’s chosen for me to walk.

  27. Thank you so much for writing this. I’m crying after reading it, I’ve been drowning in a sea of self-hatred because I’m not at what I think I should be as a human being. I’ve been contemplating for months on how to beat the self-hatred, and I recently realized that self-compromise is a big part of the issue. I’m not being true to what I want & am more concerned with what I think others want, as well as what I think I should have become if I hadn’t become disabled. What you wrote really put it into a new light for me. By fighting who I am & how I am made I’m not just compromising myself, I’m compromising God. So I want to turn my focus to, as you said, cultivating instead of fighting my self. Thank you again!

  28. Thanks for this reminder that it’s OK to be myself. Not that I don’t need to work on areas of weakness or learn self-control, etc., but I naturally tend towards guilt and judging myself (and others). Which reminds me, we can also extend this grace and understanding to those around us.

    I’m right with you on the “teenager” late-night, sleep-in schedule, and I routinely feel guilty about it, even though it works with my current part-time work schedule and my young adult sons who live with us at home (while attending community college). While I still feel the need to be more intentional with my unscheduled time, thank-you for confirming that I don’t need to fit into someone else’s mold.

    How beautiful that God designed us all so perfectly differently.