Think Well | Why Is It Important for Me to Persevere in Clear Thinking?

Think Well

What goals have you set for your spiritual formation this summer? Do you want to trust God's faithfulness more fully? Have you accumulated a pile of deeply challenging books to read? Maybe you've decided that you're sick and tired of feeling as if your prayer life needs work and are determined to focus on your… Continue reading Think Well | Why Is It Important for Me to Persevere in Clear Thinking?

How Can an Ordinary Citizen Begin to Practice a Radical Patriotism?

How Can an Ordinary Citizen Practice Radical Patriotism?

Sunday Scripture I have begun to consider listening to the morning news as a spiritual discipline, a small act of patriotism in which I put the good of our country above my own comfort or preferences. I've never been a political animal, but events of the past several years and a fleet of newly minted… Continue reading How Can an Ordinary Citizen Begin to Practice a Radical Patriotism?

What Obstacles Stand in the Way of Your Daily Endurance Test?

Daily Endurance Test

Sunday Scripture It's been so long since I administered a standardized test to a first grader that I had almost forgotten the most crucial skill being assessed is a little boy's ability to sit still for twenty to thirty minutes at a time while attending to academic material. Even with frequent and very stimulating breaks--butterfly… Continue reading What Obstacles Stand in the Way of Your Daily Endurance Test?

Is Meditation an Important Part of the Christian Life? | A Quick Tutorial

Is Meditation an Important Part of the Christian Life?

Sunday Scripture Have you ever wished you could open the Bible and read it for the first time? What if you could hear the words with new ears and see them with new eyes? How would it feel to rediscover the words you've heard for so long that you've stopped hearing them, like the sock… Continue reading Is Meditation an Important Part of the Christian Life? | A Quick Tutorial

Persevere in Hope Even When Everything Feels Too Hard

Perseverance is so much more than simply hanging on.

It's a chilly April morning, and Tucker and I galumph our way around the wooded path that circles the land behind our home. Along the path, a little beech tree stands alone, fully clothed in a grove of naked but budding alders. Every little breeze stirs a papery rustle as her brown leafy hands greet… Continue reading Persevere in Hope Even When Everything Feels Too Hard

Press the Truth Down Deep into Your Heart Today

Press the Truth Down Deep Into Your Heart Today

Sunday Scripture The longer I live, the more dubious sounds the popular wisdom of couch pillows and coffee mugs advising me to "Listen to your heart." When push comes to shove (as it invariably does), I'm learning the advice my heart dishes out is likely to lead me astray. Let me instead speak to my… Continue reading Press the Truth Down Deep into Your Heart Today

Practice Rich Habits of Faith to Minimize Distractions in a Noisy World

"These words that I command you today shall be on your heart."

Sunday Scripture "I don't need to listen to this," I said out loud (to myself) as I clicked out of my podcast app. The truth is, I could have information pouring into my eyes and ears every minute of the day: news, commentary on the news, audio books, book reviews, interviews, or conversations on the… Continue reading Practice Rich Habits of Faith to Minimize Distractions in a Noisy World

Intercessory Prayer: The Hardest Work in the World

"Intercession is the hardest work in the world..." Elisabeth Elliot

I'm convinced we're prone to make entirely too much of visible, quantifiable ministry. Don't get me wrong--I love sharing the faith that is in me with a big roomful of women and then trusting God with the results. It's also extremely satisfying to write and then painstakingly edit an article that shows up online and… Continue reading Intercessory Prayer: The Hardest Work in the World

Begin Again Every Day: A Powerful Rule of Life

Sunday Scripture Two spiritual practices carried me through December 2020: Each day, I took note of the sunrise, describing the way the light arrived and thanking God for sending the one True Light. Later, I would read a carol and write down one line that stood out to me. The big January surprise, in this… Continue reading Begin Again Every Day: A Powerful Rule of Life

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