The Happiest of Birthdays to Mom & A Celebratory Giveaway

Congratulations to the winners of the birthday drawing! Your names are posted below. Watch your inbox for an email from Living Proof later today so that we can get you your gift!

BONUS: The wonderful people at AMG Publishers have extended a 50% discount to any of you who would like to order a Key Word Study Bible! Click here to get more information, or to order your Bible. AMG Publishers

#523 – Carole Germain             #4348 – Karen Quinn
#2282 – Merissa G.                    #4399 – Anna Bunch
#2321 – Marilyn Riley                #4430 – Nancy Beeey
#2756 – Merissa Ury                  #4813 – Myrlene Darnell
#2876 – Beth Longar                  #5648 – Nan Smith
#3937 – Dani Turner                  #5798 – Rachel C.

A few nights ago I walked my buck wild new puppy around my neighborhood, watched the sun sink deep down into the horizon, and then settled in back at home. I flipped on my favorite season of the West Wing and I ate an entire bag of tortilla chips and ¾ a jar of my favorite salsa for dinner. What is it they say again? The apple does not fall far from the tree. Or something like that?

You see when we were growing up Mom would throw us kids in the back of Brontosaurus the station wagon and haul us halfway across the city to her old favorite Tex-Mex joint. She ordered a pint of salsa and a gigantic grease-stained brown paper bag of tortilla chips for take-out and she would eat all of this and only this for her dinner. Her own dinner. I can’t remember what we kids even ate, or if she fed us at all. I’m only kidding about that last part.

My mom was born at high noon in a fierce thunderstorm, my grandfather said. Her presence still shifts the atmosphere. A few weeks ago Mom left for a week in the hill country for a time of writing and solitude. The second she got back home, I loaded up my stuff and headed out to spend a night with she and my Dad. You see, for me, going to hang out with my parents isn’t really like going to hang out with the parents. Far from duty, it’s one of my favorite things to do. We caught up on all the life stuff that night. And then in the morning we drank our coffee in our pajamas and by 8:30 a.m. at the latest we had already covered topics such as the theology in Ephesians, the New Testament canon, the Holy Spirit’s role in the interpretation of Scripture, and the Festal Letter of Athanasius.

I have to say, this woman utterly dazzles me. She is the sweetest in the land. She is gracious and sanguine and loving and kind, no doubt, but she is serious and intense and focused and courageous. She has opinions and perspective and boldness and wisdom from the ground like no other. For all her awesomeness she is not self-righteous or squeamish, and God knows I have pushed her limits.

Mom is deeply committed to our family and I’ve always known that full well but I’ve also seen that she’s preoccupied with something a whole lot bigger than us. Probably the most important thing I have learned from her is that being caught up in Jesus and what He is doing in the world is everything. It is the ultimate priority and a family committed to His work in the world will get the privilege of making sacrifices together.

The four of us

Mom and Dad

Over the past few years in my own journey I found myself in an unknown place, a place where a heart could break deeper and wider and in more directions than I could have imagined possible. Mom has walked alongside me on this road further than any human could be expected to walk with another. She would have had good reasons to just sit out a while and catch her breath. But she never left my side. The road has been bumpy but also tedious and repetitive. When the landscape didn’t seem to change for a long, long time, she kept plodding along with me, carrying my burdens and helping me shoulder the grief that felt too much to bear.

Mom & Me Walking

Mom is tender and she is strong and she is not afraid to look pain and grief and loss dead in the eye. Even more, she is daring enough to hope against hope. To see in others, even me, the beginnings of life and growth and health and wholeness where others might only see brokenness and death. She has shined the light of Jesus on me more times than I can count.


She can fry a chicken and whip up mashed potatoes and gravy with the best of the Southern cooks. Her pleasures are simple: the reading of books, sitting on the front porch, walking her dogs in the woods, eating dinner with my Dad, playing games on the floor with her grandkids, and drinking tea with Amanda and me. But make no mistake she is wicked smart and complex and multifaceted. She is so much more than even the best caricature of her could ever hope to be.

Mom & AB on Piano

I love her.

Punting the River Cam

Yes, I love her. If one photo could capture the light and color she brings to my world, this is it:

The Color She Brings

It is my joy and honor to be her daughter and also to work for her at Living Proof. This blog giveaway is just one of many ways I celebrate her beautiful life today.  The first three gifts are from Living Proof and the last two gifts are personal gifts from me.

First and foremost, we are giving away eight Key Word Study Bibles. My mom gave me one of these Bibles many years ago. It was one of the first Bibles I ever really remember being excited about. It helped me become familiar with various Greek and Hebrew words before I ever took a Greek or Hebrew reading class. Every time I read it I was reminded that the Scriptures we hold in our hands in English are a translation. Remembering this often is a good thing and will take a person a long way in the study of the Bible, I think.



Second, we are giving away an assortment of several pounds of favorite Houston coffee beans. My mom is a serious coffee drinker, so this is just an obvious addition. This package will include but not be limited to one of my current favorites:

Temporada 2

Third, we are giving away an arrangement of fresh flowers Mom loves. And, really, who wouldn’t like these?

Olive & Cocoa Floral Bouquet

Fourth, we are giving away a crossbody saddlebag. Mom and I both carry versions of this crossbody bag over and over again until one breaks and we have to buy another one.

The Savannah Saddlebag

Fifth and finally, we are giving away a small bottle of Flowerbomb. Mom wears lots of different perfumes, but she most often travels with this one.


So, if you’re interested in our giveaway please do pop on and say “Happy Birthday” and show Mom some love. Your comment becomes your entry into our random drawing. Comments will officially close 24 hours after the post is published, and please only one comment per person. The names of our winners will be posted at the top of this post at some point on Thursday.

I hope you all are happy and well.


And, Mom, I love you!

The best is yet to come,



5,867 Responses to “The Happiest of Birthdays to Mom & A Celebratory Giveaway”

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  1. 400
    Deanna Estes says:

    Happy Birthday Beth! May your day and each year be blessed beyond measure!

  2. 401
    Margarita Gonzales says:

    Happy Birthday Beth! May the Lord continue to bless you obedience and your Passion for His Word! Have a wonderful day!

  3. 402
    LaRonda says:

    Happy Birthday Beth! Continued blessings on your day! Thank you for following the Lord, your work is a blessing!

  4. 403
    Rachel says:

    What a lovely tribute to such a lovely person! Happiest of Birthdays to you!

  5. 404
    Pamela Paul says:

    Happy Birthday Beth! Thank you for following God’s call in your life and being so transparent in the process. We are better people because of your obedience ❤️

  6. 405
    Janice Sellers says:

    Happy Birthday Beth – hope you have a blessed day and thank you so much for your inspiration.

  7. 406
    Sherri says:

    Happy Birthday Miss Beth!!! You are truly blessed and have blessed many around you with your Love of the Lord.

  8. 407
    Heather houser says:

    Happy birthday Beth!! You are my inspiration to learn and love Jesus more with every day. Many blessing to you and your family….

  9. 408
    Cynda Baldini says:

    Happiest Birthday Beth! Thank you sooo sooo much for all of your sacrifices for all these years and for all of us!! Love and giant Hugs!!!

  10. 409
    Karin says:

    Sweet Birthday wishes from Kenya! You have been one of my favorite teachers over the years! As I was reflecting on Elisabeth Elliot, I think how God chooses his women of faith and how others choose Him. Thank you for choosing Him…and using your gifts and talents for His glory. Karin K.

  11. 410
    Angela says:

    You are seriously one of the greatest Bible teachers, and I enjoy your studies tremendously. God bless you on your birthday.

  12. 411
    Nitsa says:

    What a wonderful and fitting tribute to your mom, Melissa.
    What a great gift from a daughter to “rise up and call her blessed”.
    Happy Birthday, Beth. May the Lord lavish you with more blessings than you can count and fill you afresh with His Spirit on this special day. I love you.

  13. 412
    Melene says:

    Happy Birthday! I am so thankful for you and your teaching. May this year be beautiful and bright!

  14. 413
    Lisa Labonbon :-) says:

    Happy birthday to the woman whose heart for Jesus challenges, encourages and blesses the socks off of us all!! Praying your day is as special and fiesty as you are and that as you journey through this next year, God’s beautiful songs will be heard all around you. Embrace, experience and embark… Life is full and you are a treasure!!! ❤️

  15. 414
    Jessie Mills says:

    Happiest of Birthdays Beth. I have grown so much in my walk with God since starting your Bible studies. This past year He has used your Esther study to work in me and prepare me for the next adventure. I’m thankful for your obedience to His prompting some, as He uses you to sharpen me. May He show you His favor in tangible ways today and this year! Again, Happy Birthday!

  16. 415
    Jennifer Flannery says:

    What a beautiful tribute, many blessings and a Happy Birthday!

  17. 416
    Lourdes Fay says:

    ♪♪♪ Happy Birthday Beth ♪♪♪
    Many birthday blessings to you!!!

  18. 417
    Adelle Dollahite says:

    Happy Happy Birthday Beth! May God continue to bless you as you’ve blessed others! ❤

  19. 418
    Bellyn Whitteker says:

    Happy Birthday, Beth!!! May your day be blessed with hugs, kisses, giggles, chocolate, more hugs, cake, ice cream/frozen yogurt, more kisses, more giggles, more chocolate, deep belly laughs, lots of well wishes, and most of all JOY, knowing you are deeply loved by the God of the Universe! Enjoy your day!!

  20. 419
    Glenda Cook says:

    Happy Birthday Woman of God!! Thank You for all your life changing ministry! Out of all your accomplishments, you have done an awesome job with your daughter!! Love this Blog post, Of course I cried, I was this close to my Mom who was also a woman of God. When going through her closet, I found 12 Bibles, all written in and studied until they are falling apart!!! Her life & legacy are the most precious treasure I have, besides my own daughters! I LOVE to see Mom’s & daughter’s love each other this much! And now, I am craving..chips & salsa! <3 HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!

  21. 420
    Amy says:

    Happy birthday sweet Beth! The Lord has used your studies to radically change my life and I’m ever grateful for your humble obedience to Him over and over. You may never know the depth of what your submission to His work has meant to so many of us on this side of eternity. Thank you. So thankful for who you are! Love you so dearly!

    P.S If I’m at least HALF of a fashion guru as you someday, I’ll take it. What I would give for a little shopping trip and Starbucks with you!

  22. 421
    Anita S says:

    Happy Birthday, Beth. You are a blessing to so many. May God richly bless you in return!

  23. 422
    Renee Wright says:

    Happy Happy Birthday to you, precious Beth! What an inspiration and model you are to all of women, who are eager to read, listen and learn from you. Thank you for your passion and dedication to our Lord and Savior. You are a beautiful Godly woman, inside and out.

    Love in Christ,
    Renee Wright

    PS – My daughter recently moved to Houston to continue her graduate studies at Rice University. It is my hope and prayer she gets connected with other Godly women soon!

  24. 423
    Gayle says:

    Happy Birthday Beth! Blessings to you on this your birthday! Thank you for your consistent teaching of the Word.

  25. 424
    Lauren McGuigan says:

    Happy Birthday, Beth! May your day be filled with innumerable birthday blessings! Thank you for your obedience to teach His word and share your heart to the glory of His name! YOU are a blessing to many!

  26. 425
    Renee says:

    Happy Birthday Beth! I so enjoy your studies! Hope you have a blessed day!!

  27. 426
    Elizabeth Havens says:

    Happy Birthday Beth….you are so inspiring to so many!!! Thank You!

  28. 427
    Jackie Klayman says:

    Happy Birthday to a spiritual momma to so many of us! You are a blessing deeper than you’ll ever know!

  29. 428
    mercy4Drew says:

    Happy Birthday!

  30. 429
    Jacci says:

    Happy Birthday Beth! You have had such an incredible impact on my faith and my relationship with the Lord. May you feel his favor on your birthday!

  31. 430
    Lesley says:

    Happy Birthday, Beth! Wishing you a magical day with loads of love.

  32. 431
    Elaine says:

    Happy birthday, Beth! May this next year bring you more showers of blessings than tongue can ever tell!

  33. 432
    Kim Ulkekul says:

    Happy Birthday, Beth! What a beautifully written post, Melissa. Having just graduated my third of three girls from high school, her words of gratitude to me have made me weepy all week. I’m sure these from you meant more than she could describe. Hope your day is as special as you are to so many.

  34. 433
    Lori says:

    Happy, Happy Birthday, Beth! I have learned so much from your Bible Studies. You are such a blessing! I hope you have a wonderful day with family and friends.

  35. 434
    natashajk says:

    Happiest of Happy Birthdays to you Miss Beth! Thank you so much for the example of faithfulness that your life is.

    And Melissa, this is a beautiful post. Your mom is blessed to have you as a daughter.

  36. 435
    Kristi Craig says:

    Wonderful post – so precious! Thank you Beth for all that you are and all that you do! Happy, happy birthday!!!

  37. 436
    Kim Birdsong says:

    Happy Happy Birthday, Ms. Beth! I loved reading Melissa’s blog and her affection and love for you. So sweet! I hope you have an amazing day!!

  38. 437
    Alexia Gossett says:

    Happiest of Birthdays to a very sweet Christ loving lady!!

  39. 438
    Sharon Brown says:

    What a beautiful tribute to a beautiful woman of God! Your children rise up and call you blessed. Happy, Happy Birthday Beth you are blessed beyond measure and a blessing to the multitudes 😀 😀

  40. 439
    Sarah Beth Allen says:

    Happy Birthday Mrs. Beth!! So thankful for your obedience to our God. The words you spoke at Liberty University this year were one of our most needed messages. Thank you so much for that gift! I hope you have the most wonderful and blessed day of celebration!

  41. 440
    Leann says:

    Happy Birthday! You are such an inspiration to so many and a great example of a Godly woman. I hope you have a fantastic birthday!

  42. 441
    Kim Kester says:

    Happiest of birthday’s to you sweet Beth! A group of us from church saw you and Chris Caine in Stockton last June. It was amazing and I can’t wait to see you again!

  43. 442
    Jennie says:

    Happy Birthday and what a beautiful post by your daughter!! I have gained much wisdom through your Bible studies and so thankful for the gifting God has given you to share!

  44. 443
    Magie Wolfe says:

    Happy Birthday, from one of the many who has been blessed over the years by your ministry. Jesus has used you to strengthen my faith, encouraging my walk in dark and hilltop times and your ministry has blessed my marriage and parenting skills. Love you and your ministry so because they have pulled me into Jesus. Again have the best birthday ever!!

  45. 444
    J.C. Sharp says:

    Birthday blessings to one amazing lady, that blesses and encourages so many!

  46. 445
    Kathy Hall says:

    Happy Birthday Beth!! May the Lord continue to lead you as you teach and lead us. God bless you today and everyday!

  47. 446
    Laura says:

    Ah sweet Beth, my friend I’ve never met in person but whom I have spent so many hours with pouring over the Word of God – Happy Birthday! I am so blessed by your life and pray blessings on the year ahead. Thank you for modeling passion.

  48. 447
    Sunny Folk says:

    3812 Orchard Rd. Wilm., De. 19808 HAPPY BIRTHDAY BETH…I have received a wealth of knowledge from your video bible studies, can’t wait when one ends and another starts. May the Lord continue to BLESS YOU…

  49. 448
    Shelley Schnepper says:

    Happy Birthday, Beth! I have gone through two of your bible studies with my church sisters and will be starting our third soon. Thank you for helping me to dive deeper into the Word of God!

  50. 449
    Marilyn Askins says:

    Happy Birthday, Beth!! You have been a part of my life for years. Our daughters were at A&M together. I too talk too loud and too much. Thank you for sharing yourself and your teachings with me. God bless you on this happy day.