I’ve heard it many times and from the most unexpected sources: “I try to read the Bible, but . . . it doesn’t seem to say anything to me. I don’t understand what I’m reading. It doesn’t help me, so I end up quitting . . “ Set this response beside David’s from Psalm 119:… Continue reading So You Want to Be Relevant? Commit to Taking God at His Word!
In the dark, in the car, hands on the steering wheel, I sighed in frustration. “I can’t do this anymore,” I said out loud, startling myself with the fierceness of my tone over the sound of the car’s heater. On that frigid January night, I was brittle with fatigue and hollow with disappointment. I had… Continue reading What Is Your Reference Point for Success in Ministry?
Today I attacked the kind of cleaning chores that I envision other more diligent and domestically devoted women doing all the time, the tidying that requires pulling furniture away from the wall, vacuuming under beds, and applying a ferocious dust cloth to the rungs of chairs and the hidden recesses of bookcases. Homely household routines… Continue reading The Unexpected Gift of Homemaking and What I Learned from Elisabeth Elliot
COVID-19 has initiated the celebration of some very unique milestones. For me, the most memorable was the day I sat between two of my grandchildren and read them a story for the first time since we began sheltering at home. We celebrated the relaxation of strict quarantine here in rural Maine with our little group of… Continue reading How to Persevere All the Way Through the Pandemic: Are We There Yet?
Strict practitioners would not have approved of my methods, but on one long ago mid-winter Wednesday, I smeared ashes on the foreheads of my two preschoolers and myself. An offering of the hardwood that had heated our home the day before, these ashes were not “ceremonially correct” in any way. At the time, I did… Continue reading Ash Wednesday in the Parenting Pressure Cooker
In this first week of January, I am already ignoring one of my every-year resolutions--the one where I promise myself not to use up all the lines in my planner every single day with things to do and places to go. There's something so freeing about white space in those tight little squares that represent… Continue reading What Keeps You from Being a Feather on the Breath of God?
“You can say ‘no,’” he said softly, in a whisper, so our son would not hear.Immediately, my guard went up. It was Christmas time, so my planner was bulging its squares with lists of things to buy and to wrap and to bake. What was my husband going to propose that required this ominous-sounding, front-loaded… Continue reading Say Yes to the Gift of Christmas
A city’s gradual emergence from the coronavirus shut down corresponds to a certain atmosphere in its airport. My husband and I took off our masks just long enough to eat subs at a socially distant table, and then, our masks back in place, we settled ourselves near Gate A-3 to wait out the remainder of… Continue reading An Unveiled Life in the Presence of God
Site plans and scholarship applications litter my dining room table these days, and the talk around dinner is all about the future. Life as I know it is about to undergo a drastic change here on this country hill. Having homeschooled a brood of four sons for the past twenty-one years, I’ve seen our story… Continue reading What Will You Do with Yourself? (And Other Questions of the Emptying Nest)
According to Richard Rohr, the prophets in a social structure stand off-center in a place of observation. Their position on “the edge of inside” affords them a view that is informed and yet independent. From this vantage point, the Apostle John was given the divine direction: “Write what you see.” And he saw plenty. Artists… Continue reading Art as a Holy Partnership