Five Reasons You Should Study Greek

There's a Greek alphabet tucked into my cookbook shelf, and every so often I bump into it in my search for a recipe.  It's an apt metaphor for the place and prominence that deep study plays in my every day life -- tucked somewhere between the soup and the muffins.  The reappearance of that chart… Continue reading Five Reasons You Should Study Greek

The Great Work: Encouragement

"Don't corral others to meet your needs." "Choose to be a servant." "Give yourself away." If you're interviewing a guy who wears the title "Chief Encouragement Officer" like a banner, you can expect to hear lots of sentences like these.  Here's another one:  "The goal is to get small and, in humility, to build others… Continue reading The Great Work: Encouragement

A Study in Perseverance

Determination perseveres in spite of the word "no." When Rosalie Ranquist realized that she was called to be a missionary, her rough background and lack of education led church leaders to discourage her from pursuing her goal.  Even so, in 1967 she left for Papua New Guinea and her career was remarkable in every way… Continue reading A Study in Perseverance

Excellence — Who, Me?

The wow-factor of my kids' birthday parties? The visibility of certain muscle groups in my arms, legs, and torso? The ease and finesse with which I can entertain a party of twelve, self-publish a book, or create deck furniture from wooden palettes? Are any of these a worthy means of measuring my excellence? Not according… Continue reading Excellence — Who, Me?

Diligence and Focus: Thoughts from the Garden

Since the blossoms are turning into green beans; Since the tomatoes are crowding each other for a peek of the red-ripening sun; Since going to the garden feeds my soul as well as my family, I look forward every year to the season of hunkering down between the bean plants.  It’s challenging this year with… Continue reading Diligence and Focus: Thoughts from the Garden

Veering into the Serene Providence

Knocking twenty-two years’ worth of dust off a resume stretches the definition of “creative writing” to its limit. After giving my time away for two decades, can I convince even myself that my skills are marketable? Am I still capable of holding my own in the workforce? The questions hang in the air like a… Continue reading Veering into the Serene Providence

Toward a Theology of Reverence and Awe

It is staggering to think that the life of faith is really an invitation to share in the nature of God.  He is holy, and he calls the believer to a life of holiness, providing the means and the might to make it happen.  He is loving, and He pours His love through us in… Continue reading Toward a Theology of Reverence and Awe

Four Faith-Forward Lessons from the Life of Moses

In a couple of months, I'll be celebrating two years of blogging.  When my pastor first invited me to be a guest writer for the church's blog, I could barely breathe whenever I clicked on that "publish" button -- and that really hasn't changed too much.  What has changed, however, is my understanding of bold… Continue reading Four Faith-Forward Lessons from the Life of Moses