The most precious features in the topography of home are always the people. We’re home when we have friends to share our table. We’re home when we become neighbors, when we share a story, when we find people who hear us out and welcome us in. Home is where we are claimed by God and one another. Read more

At its core, it seems to me that Christian hope is the assurance that God is leading us into his goodness. Hope isn’t that God will grant us our every desire. Part of the trick is cultivating God-shaped desires. Read more

I suspect that a lot of us have some break-the-glass resources we keep stashed away in our lives, resources we turn to in moments of trial. Read more

You, O Lord, have made me glad by your work; at the works of your hands I sing for joy (Psalm 92:4) There’s little that impedes life in Christ more than the inability to experience delight.  Our spirits get crusted with disappointment and jadedness, annoyance and lumps of judgmentalism.  We gaze at the world and sees nothing worthy of our interest and attention.  Nothing worthy of us. It’s easy to fall into this sort of attitude.  The things that annoy us… Read more

What if we read the Bible with the sense that God will speak to us what we really need to hear? Read more

We ate at a big city burrito joint not long ago.  It’s a good sign when the line meanders out the door and people are pressing forward so that there’s scarcely space to sit.  The city was hungry, and so were we.  These were some good burritos. Jesus taught about hunger when he taught us to pray, “give us this day our daily bread,” he was teaching a reliance on God for our daily needs.  May God grant us the… Read more

We spent the last week wandering around Boston.  We lived in the city when we were first married, and it’s one of our favorite places.  Down in South Boston, near a canal and a swathe of red brick warehouse buildings, we stumbled upon a little chapel: Our Lady of Good Voyage.  It’s a shrine originally built for sailors and dock workers to stop and pray in the midst of their labors in an age when Boston would have been largely Catholic…. Read more

Faith feels like the bottom dropping out of life.  In a good way. I know, I know–faith is the “assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen” (Hebrews 11:1).  But there’s so much mystery, so much that we can’t wrap our heads around, so much that confounds any attempt on our part to put together a faithful story.  My faith gives me assurance, but not foreknowledge.  Faith is a skittery thing–at least for me.  I experience faith… Read more

I worshiped with a different congregation yesterday.  They’re a church on the deep end of the liturgical tradition, which means they had an elaborate, sturdy ritual scaffolding to hold God’s people before God in prayer.  The church was high-ceilinged, marbled, and gilt.  There were columns and candles and a great throne for the bishop above which hung a shield with the word humilitas–humility–which I found strangely endearing. I love this sort of thing; I’m a high-church soul in a low-church ecclesiastical body…. Read more

A long time ago in a college far, far away, I took a philosophy course.  I quickly came to admire my professor’s discipline, the strictness of his thought categories, the way he seemed to run his life along nice, straight lines.  He had taught himself to draw a perfect circle freehand on the chalkboard.  He used a ruler to underline events in his desk calendar.  He had this orderly way of logicking in the world, and I liked his approach:… Read more

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