Sunday Scripture ~ 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

“You mustn’t wish for another life. You mustn’t want to be somebody else. What you must do is this: ‘Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In everything give thanks.’ I am not all the way capable of so much, but those are the right instructions.”

According to the Apostle Paul, gratitude is more than a pumpkin-spice-feeling. It is a matter of obedience to the will of God. Author and poet Wendell Berry put words into the mouth of a fictional, elderly widow named Hannah Coulter who, in addition to being a crackerjack farmhand when needed and probably making a great… Continue reading Sunday Scripture ~ 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Sunday Scripture ~ Isaiah 12:1

Gratitude is a choice!

I love a decisive verb, especially when it appears in the setting of a solid, declarative sentence. Isaiah 12 is just right for this season of gratitude, falling leaves, and stiff breezes.  The prophet’s bracing words stand up to the fading light here on the far edge of the Eastern Time Zone with a pronouncement… Continue reading Sunday Scripture ~ Isaiah 12:1

A Celebration of Light in a Season of Darkness

Jesus is the Light that shines in darkness.

When autumn lands with all its beauty, it's reassuring that family celebrations around apples and pumpkins and brightly colored leaves will counteract the dread of encroaching darkness and falling temperatures. As the days grow short and the nights longer, Meadow Rue Merrill offers a sweet picture book story featuring an alternative fall celebration that focuses… Continue reading A Celebration of Light in a Season of Darkness

Musings: November 2018

Wounded in Spirit

In just a few days, we'll begin the season of Advent. Even if you don't observe much else on the liturgical calendar, it's hard to avoid the on-ramp to Christmas. Instead of counting shopping days and check marks on my do-list, my practice has been to think of Advent as a time of preparation for… Continue reading Musings: November 2018

Gratitude Is a Gift for All Seasons

Gratitude is a gift for all seasons.

The distance around my elliptical driveway is one tenth of a mile. I know this because I drove around it, watching the odometer—and then did it again just to be sure. This fall I’ve been doing a careful jog-trot around its leaf-strewn gravel, a compromise intended to jump start a flagging metabolism without putting undue… Continue reading Gratitude Is a Gift for All Seasons

Following the Instructions for a Grateful Heart

Following the Instructions for a Grateful Heart

One morning, deep into the throes of our kitchen renovation, it dawned on me that I had no idea where our toaster was. Having reduced breakfast to the lowest common denominator of toasted bagels with cream cheese, my quest for the toaster was more than idle curiosity, and when it showed up in the furnace… Continue reading Following the Instructions for a Grateful Heart

Musings — November 2017

This has been a year of complicated math. With one son having spent a snowy spring semester plowing through an online Technical Math II class (every bit as bad as it sounds) and another presently working his way through geometry, we have had some fairly intense conversations around operations and theorems, but it's also been… Continue reading Musings — November 2017

Thanksgiving Celebration and Lament

Nearly thirty years ago, I married into a family that celebrated Thanksgiving Day with All-American fervor, featuring a day-long gathering and a loaded table. As the new bride, I was eager to prove that I had what it took to be the holiday hostess. Having done my research, I had planned all the best sides,… Continue reading Thanksgiving Celebration and Lament

November Musings — 2016

4988 -- Warm zucchini bread smelling like a cinnamon candle 4989 -- Church supper to celebrate our new pastor and our family connection 4990 -- Clanging of wind chime in the chill autumn breeze On the Monday before Thanksgiving Day, I recorded gift number 5,000 in my gratitude journal -- confirmed evidence of God's goodness… Continue reading November Musings — 2016