What Keeps You from Being a Feather on the Breath of God?

What keeps you from being a feather on the breath of God?

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?

Say Yes to the Gift of Christmas

Joy is a gift that comes as we make room for it in our lives.

“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

An Unveiled Life in the Presence of God

Perhaps, in all our safe separation and invisibility, we have forgotten that there is One who sees all, and before Him, we are free to come with unveiled faces.

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

What Will You Do with Yourself? (And Other Questions of the Emptying Nest)

Today, the questions from all the seasons of my mothering life meet and dance in a circle around this emptying nest.

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)

Art as a Holy Partnership

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

Enneagram Three: You Are More than What You Can Do

We are all ever so much more than what we do.

Oblivious to the hum of classroom activity, I turned page after page as silent reading time flew by. In the fifth grade, I was riveted to the story arc of Helen Keller’s life. Only just barely old enough to fathom the complexity of getting an education without sight or hearing, my laser focus had found… Continue reading Enneagram Three: You Are More than What You Can Do

Hear, Do, Know: The Christian’s Clear Assignment

“To listen to one word and go out and obey it is better than having the most exalted ‘religious experience,’ for it puts us in touch with God Himself—it is a willed response.” Elisabeth Elliot

My young friend’s question was as deeply earnest as it was misguided: “I know I need to read and pray every day, but isn’t it just hypocritical to go through the motions on days when I’m not feelin’ it?” It’s not hard to trace this line of reasoning to its source. In Western thought, a… Continue reading Hear, Do, Know: The Christian’s Clear Assignment

Creating the Conditions for Spiritual Growth

I cannot make spiritual growth happen on my own, so I'm trusting the recipe.

Bread dough the color of molasses yielded to the pressure of my working fist. Fold, press, turn, repeat, and soon I lost count of how many times I had kneaded the fragrant lump. With the recipe calling for three hundred repetitions, I began to wonder— Three hundred? Really? But switching to the heel of my… Continue reading Creating the Conditions for Spiritual Growth

How Do You Know if You Are Called to Be a Writer?

"Writing is hard work. Writing well is even harder." ~Andrew Le Peau

As a true fan of certainty, I am filled with longing whenever I read Old Testament stories in which God shows up in unmistakable clarity. He speaks from a bush on fire, gives audible instructions for travel, and issues a rebuke from between the squared off teeth of a donkey. Even when Samuel, young and… Continue reading How Do You Know if You Are Called to Be a Writer?

To the Woman Who Feels Crowded by Christmas

Christ’s willingness to hunker down, wizen up, and enter the darkness opens the door to his light and his life being formed in you and me.

We are covered to the elbows in red and green paint, but the festive wrapping paper stretched out to dry on the table before us more than justifies the mess. The toddler points to his distinctively tiny handprints and smiles his satisfaction, as his older brothers start wondering aloud about cocoa with candy cane stirrers.… Continue reading To the Woman Who Feels Crowded by Christmas