Accept the Challenge of Choosing What Matters Most

But now let me show you a way of life that is best of all. (I Corinthians 12:31)

If the statisticians are correct, and American adults really do get to make over 35 thousand choices every single day, I should be much better at choosing than I am. Maybe you feel this way as well, for rarely are our decisions simple and uncluttered. Like author and speaker Lucinda Secrest McDowell, we often find… Continue reading Accept the Challenge of Choosing What Matters Most

Wonder 101: What Your Kids Can Teach You About Delighting in God

The embedded the spiritual practice of noticing God at work in the beauty around us sharpens our prayer life and leads to worship in the present moment.

My grandson's favorite grape tomatoes ripen to a vivid orange in the sunshine on one of the outside rows of my garden. He literally quivers with delight when we pick them together, filling container after container with their bright beauty--and a small one to stow in his cup holder for the ride home. Children do… Continue reading Wonder 101: What Your Kids Can Teach You About Delighting in God

Reaching Out for the Adjacent Possible

Make it your practice to begin working on your spiritual goals by addressing today’s adjacent possible.

“Nine chapters, one hundred fifty two pages—how hard can this be?” I thought, as I loaded a well-known Christian classic onto my Kindle. Slogging through chapter two, reality began to set in. I had always been an avid reader but felt a need to be more intentional in my reading choices. The holes in my… Continue reading Reaching Out for the Adjacent Possible

What if Christians Became the Best Advertisement for Jesus?

What if Christians' irresistible faith became the best advertisement for Jesus?

The philosophical underpinnings of Christianity point the way to a community where each one competes to show maximum honor and respect to the others. The Bible describes a rule of life that values individuals as carriers of the image of God and the church gathered as a place to be refueled for maximum impact when… Continue reading What if Christians Became the Best Advertisement for Jesus?

Practical Help for Journaling as a Spiritual Discipline

A review of Journaling for the Soul by Deborah Haddix

Among the assorted ranks of those who practice journaling, you can record me in the column labeled "intimidated." Observation, application, and interpretation of my reading primes the pump, but never are my entries particularly stirring or insightful. My pages are scattered with partial outlines, first and second drafts of biblically-inspired poetry, and lists of questions… Continue reading Practical Help for Journaling as a Spiritual Discipline

Celebrating the Labor and the Love

Celebrating the Labor and the Love in the Spiritual Discipline of Housekeeping

Most days on this country hill are a blur.  With every line in my planner filled, there’s also the background music of laundry and continual cleaning.  In the winter, there’s a voracious wood stove; in the summer there’s a garden that needs constant attention. Stuffing a ratty t-shirt into the washer’s maw, I try not… Continue reading Celebrating the Labor and the Love

Your New Life Beyond the To-Do List

Review of Make a List by Marilyn McEntyre: Your New Life Beyond the To-Do List

As one who lives by a list, I have come to appreciate the satisfaction of a neat column of check marks at the end of a day, the faithful reminder to pray or to do or to go, and the convenience of a resource close at hand: "Didn't we buy slippers for her last Christmas?"… Continue reading Your New Life Beyond the To-Do List

The Ancient Way of Praying Made New

Last summer, sitting on a rocky beach with family all around, I noticed a small white shell among the scramble of stones and shards of driftwood. Soon I had collected a handful, all pure white and perfectly whorled, the former dwelling place for some diminutive, absentee mollusk. For a few days, I carried them around… Continue reading The Ancient Way of Praying Made New

Commit Deliberate Acts of Hospitality

Hospitality is a deliberate decision to know the people around you from more than a polite distance.

We were new in church and new to the area, and our little three-bedroom fixer-upper was situated in a part of the universe in which it didn't matter that we had been born and bred in Maine. We had not been born and bred in this part of Maine, and we had the accent (or lack of same) to… Continue reading Commit Deliberate Acts of Hospitality

A Praying Life

Prayer is about relationship with God. A Praying Life by Paul Miller

I shut off the mower's whirring blades, removed my hearing protection, and there it was:  the splash and whoosh of the Atlantic Ocean, always restless, continually wearing away the granite at the bottom of the embankment in the back yard where I had been mowing.  Clouds above were heavy with rain; therefore, sunset would come… Continue reading A Praying Life