Remembering One of My “Cloud of Witnesses”

My “cloud of witnesses”—people whose stories have influenced my life, shown me what is important and led me in the way I need to go—is full of regular, imperfect people whose influence was also somewhat haphazard and unintentional. [Read more...]

I Have Three Things to Say About “The Dress”

A viral social media phenomenon that helps us understand just how fundamental and deep our differences in perception can be—and that those perceptions have nothing to do with whether we are good, thoughtful, and wise or bad, shallow, and silly—is more than a meaningless distraction. [Read more...]

Believing with Our Bodies

I go back to the paradox that our bodies both betray us and reflect our deepest, God-given self. I think of the broken, brutalized body of Christ on the cross, as he suffered through pain that was both horrific—a reflection of all that is wrong with this world—and redeemed—a means for God’s grace to be revealed in a new, world-changing way. [Read more...]

Why Even the Smallest Good Work is Worth Doing

Jesus showed us how even small acts of care are multiplied in God’s economy, so that ultimately all are filled and satisfied—not because the economists and politicians and voters focus on big problems at the expense of little ones, but because every act of mercy, justice, and love is born in the heart of our infinite God and is therefore infinitely powerful, capable of bringing about change far beyond our limited vision of what’s possible and prudent. [Read more...]

Why I Believe Native American Mascots Should Go

My husband and I are fans of Washington, D.C.’s football team, which means we (especially my husband—I’m a fan because he’s a fan) have spent two decades of football seasons being disappointed.  We are grateful, however, for the increasing pressure being put on the NFL and the team’s owners to get rid of the team [Read More...]

The Perfect Pair of Boots and the Essential Work of Parenting

I wonder if, as our children grow and their increasingly complicated needs outgrow our capacities to easily meet them, the physical care we offer actually becomes more important, not less. We love people by engaging in basic acts of care for them. That is the essential, sometimes undervalued, foundation of parental love. It’s also the essential foundation of Christian love. [Read more...]

Surviving January with Help from the Danes, the Japanese, and Jesus

On whom can we pin the blame for January, I wonder? It doesn’t seem quite fair to blame Janus, the God of beginnings and transitions, after whom the month is named, for this month’s long misery. Although, the pressure to embrace new beginnings (all those resolutions!) during the year’s most miserable month is likely part of our [Read More...]

14 Blog Posts from 2014 That You Need to Read

These are the posts written in 2014 for which I had immediate recall because they were so wise, moving, funny, or all of the above. [Read more...]

On Assisted Suicide and Chronic Pain, Sex and Prayer, DNA and Ice Buckets: Top 10 Posts of 2014

The 10 most-read blog posts of 2014—a list that provides a good snapshot of topics I regularly cover, such as genetics, chronic pain, medical decision making, parenting, and Christianity. [Read more...]

Is There a Right Way to Celebrate Christmas?

Christmas. It’s such a mixed bag, isn’t it? I’m an unapologetic lover of all things Christmas. I love choosing just the right gifts for my kids, stacking bins of homemade cookies on the back porch, and driving around to see light displays—the more garish and over-the-top, the better. For the past few years, including this [Read More...]

Let’s Stop Bashing These Christmas Traditions

I’m all for trashing traditions that give us only glitz, gluttony, and maxed-out credit cards. But many of the traditions that get a bad rap, including these five, remain cherished by our family each year. [Read more...]

Feel Like Everyone Wants a Piece of You?: A Guide for More Wholehearted Living for Moms


The core message of Wholehearted Living is that while our families and responsibilities will sometimes pull us in a million directions or make us feel that we’ve handed out so much of ourselves to other people that there’s very little left for us, we can take a few minutes each day to nurture quiet and engage in meaningful reflection. [Read more...]