“There but for the grace of God”?: Grace, Darkness, and the Sandy Hook Shooting

As I huddled beneath my flannel sheets Friday night, two of my children safely in their beds, my oldest daughter out with my husband driving several of her friends home, I surprised myself by whispering, “There but for the grace of God go I,” that old cliché that comes in response to tragedy. Friday’s Newtown, [Read More...]

I’m Pretty Sure Today IS the Time to Talk About Gun Control

I came home from a lovely lunch with my mom to headlines that 27 people are dead in an elementary school not far from where I live. At least 18 are children. One account said that the gunman opened fire in a kindergarten classroom. I’m going to repost what I wrote after another (of the [Read More...]

A Whole New Way to Bring Home Baby

As the one-year anniversary of my book publication approaches in January, I’m devoting Fridays from now until the end of the year to revisiting the book’s major themes. Each Friday, I’ll post an excerpt from No Easy Choice: A Story of Disability, Parenthood, and Suffering in an Age of Advanced Reproduction. This week’s excerpt focuses [Read More...]

Preparing a Way for God to Enter Our Busy Advent World

My Advent posts this year have centered on a single theme—that honoring Advent does not require us to retreat from busy Christmas preparation, that our thing- and task-focused preparations might even be particularly appropriate for a God who came to us as an actual needy baby born in a stinky stable. Because I am fully [Read More...]

A Lifeline for Our Damaged Selves: A Review of Anne Lamott’s “Help. Thanks. Wow.”

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For many female Christian writers, particularly those like me who write about theology in non-academic terms and in the context of our lives as mothers, neighbors, church members, and writers, novelist and spiritual memoirist Anne Lamott embodies our highest aspirations. I remember reading her memoir Operating Instructions: A Journal of My Son’s First Year, and [Read More...]

“We Have to Consider the Quality of Our Children”: IVF, a Nobel Prize, and Cultural Confusion Around Reproductive Ethics

As the one-year anniversary of my book publication approaches in January, I’m devoting Fridays from now until the end of the year to revisiting the book’s major themes. Each Friday, I’ll post an excerpt from No Easy Choice: A Story of Disability, Parenthood, and Suffering in an Age of Advanced Reproduction. This week, I’m featuring [Read More...]

Can the Christmas Rush Be Meaningful?

I have a post up over at Relevant Magazine today, contemplating Advent, Christmas preparation, busyness, and meaning. It is another take on the themes I raised in Tuesday’s post. I hope you’ll give it a read and participate in the conversation! [Read more...]

Busy Hands, Quiet Heart: Thoughts On Advent

Confession: Every time I come across advice from a fellow Christian urging us to slow down during Advent, I am tempted to do an exaggerated, teenager-ly eye roll. Sometimes I actually do the eye roll. And throw in a heavy sigh for dramatic effect. To me, admonitions to shun holiday season busy-ness in favor of [Read More...]

The Liminal Nature of Human Embryos, and How That Nature Complicates Reproductive Decisions

As the one-year anniversary of my book publication approaches in January, I’m devoting Fridays from now until the end of the year to revisiting the book’s major themes. Each Friday, I’ll post an excerpt from No Easy Choice: A Story of Disability, Parenthood, and Suffering in an Age of Advanced Reproduction. This week, I’m featuring [Read More...]

No Amount of Yoga or Perseverence Will Allow Me to Run

I have a tendency to stare overlong at the many runners who come to my picturesque wooded lakeside neighborhood for their daily exercise. I watch the ones for whom running comes so naturally, with their long effortless strides, their upright posture, the unmistakable light in their eyes. I envy these runners, for their gracefulness and [Read More...]

What the Real St. Nicholas Teaches Us About Gift Giving

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When I picked up Adam C. English’s new book, The Saint Who Would be Santa Claus: The True Life and Trials of Nicholas of Myra, I hoped for insights into how a fourth century bishop in what is now Turkey became our generous, child-loving symbol of Christmas giving. To an extent, I was disappointed. St. [Read More...]

A Proposal for a Longer Christmas Season…In the OTHER Direction

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In addition to the oft-bemoaned retail practice of filling shelves with Christmas goods as soon as Halloween is over, I have noticed that regular folk are putting their Christmas decorations up earlier and earlier—before Thanksgiving in some cases. And this bothers me. Not only because it overshadows our celebration of Thanksgiving, which is such a [Read More...]


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