Grief for the Villians

A guest post: by Rev. Elizabeth GrashamMy ex-husband calls my cellphone once a week to talk to our son.  In and of itself, that would probably sound normal to any person who lives with a custody agreement, post-divorce.  Except the first person my son hears when he answers the phone is not his dad; it’s a voice recording.“You are about to receive a prepaid phone call from [XXXX], an inmate housed at the [XXXX] Unit. If you still want to accept this prepaid phone call, please touch ‘1’.” … [Read more...]

$10 In My Pocket

Guest Post: by Tiffany FlamingI have $10 in my pocket. It might as well be $1,000,000. I have that much of a clue as to what to do with it. It doesn’t seem like a lot of money but it is heavy with meaning and generosityI’ve had a rough, well, let’s say year and a few months. I’ve been quiet over here because I am more of an internal processor when life goes south and in many ways it has. But in many ways, it’s pretty great. I am on the verge of a new chapter and over the last few mont … [Read more...]

Transgender Travel: People are Mostly Okay

Airport people watching is one of my favorite activities. In general, airports make me anxious. The crowds; the frenetic sense of urgency as people rush around; the smell of other people's (way too much) perfume or cologne; the bottled water that costs $800; business bros talking loudly into ear pieces so that we will know they are Very Important; constant reminders to guard your stuff, people, terrorists are everywhere!; the thousand ways my day and trip could be derailed by a sneeze or a … [Read more...]

Don’t Like Your Pastor? Don’t Leave Your Church

There's a blog post going around called "So You Don't Like your Pastor..." I read it. And it wasn't about what I thought it was going to be about.First of all, it was written from a completely male perspective. Not just written by a man, but written as though only men exist in the world, ever. You know how those things go... But the article was about clergy burn-out, the unique stresses of pastoral life, and how church members should have empathy for their pastors... Understanding that m … [Read more...]

Cleaning the Brushes: The Never-Done Work of Ministry

My friend Kory shares some thoughts on the "never done-ness" of ministry. On behalf of pastors everywhere, I say, "amen, brother."I helped my neighbor stain his pool deck this weekend. I wish I could tell you I did this Mother Theresa-style, all selfless and void of any agenda. But in all honesty, I had two motivations: (1) he helped me stain my deck last year, and (2) I want to stay in his good graces so my family and I have an all-access pass to use his pool.It took us about four … [Read more...]

Healing and Holding Up the World: A Tribute for National Nurse Week

Guest Post: by Elizabeth Myer BoultonMy mother was a nurse all her professional life which meant we grew up with graphic (and often hilarious!) dinner conversation, weird work hours, and the knowledge that we would have to be actively dying or bleeding to death before we could go to the Emergency Room.Now that I’m a mother who actively sought out nurse midwives for labor and delivery and nurse practitioners for our family's medical care, I've learned more about my mom than simply knowing … [Read more...]

5 Small Steps to a Simpler Closet (and Safer Planet)

Earlier this week, I shared a post about my family's Sock Scavenger Hunt. I paid my kids actual money to track down every sock in our house, so that we wouldn't have to go buy more. worked!  This exercise was related to growing concerns about textile waste. In addition to wanting to scale back the amount of stuff in our house, I am trying to be more conscientious about where my clothes come from: and the related environmental and humanitarian impact of what I consume.Here's what I've … [Read more...]

Lost and Found: A Parable In Socks

You know what was great about living in the desert all those years? Among other things--not having to wear socks. Ever.Maybe occasionally with running shoes or hiking boots, if you were going out on a trail. Because, you know, rattle snakes. But otherwise, it was 10 months a year of sandals. Glorious, breezy, open-toed, sock-less freedom.Sure, I love a warm fuzzy pair to wear around the house on a cold winter day. But even better was the complete absence of cold winter days. For the most … [Read more...]

Sidestepping Sexism: It’s Just Easier

Yesterday a blog troll called me a fascist bitch.Also yesterday--an elderly funeral director told me that I'd sure be cute...if I had red hair. (Read: I find your purple hair unbefitting a  proper lady. Also, I think you are 12 years old, and women should not be ministers).These are two totally different things. But also, they are exactly the same.First, why they are different; the troll was coming from a place of hostility (hostility being the official language of troll-dom) while … [Read more...]