The Rhythms of Grace

Last week, I signed my 4-year-old daughter up for her first dance class. !!  I bought tights and leotards, and she's been wearing them around the house for weeks now. I'm trying to teach her the grande jette. Because, you know, it is always preferable to begin the (beginner, toddler, community center) class from a more advanced perspective than your peers.Oh, yeah. I'm going to be that mom. Consider yourselves forewarned.Thing is, while the 'retired' dance teacher in me is thrilling at … [Read more...]

Go and See

Advent and Christmas might be the most hectic time in the church year. But it can also be the fullest and most blessed. All the serving and sharing, the singing and decorating, the gathering and singing some more...it all leads up to something that feels almost magical, as we gather in a candle-lit, greened up sanctuary on Christmas Eve.Or i should say, sanctuaries. Because part of the magic of that sacred gathering is knowing that, in sanctuaries all over the world, others gather to sing … [Read more...]

Cut and Paste

I've had a startling revelation--I'm conservative.At least, the elements of my life reflect conservative values. I am married to a partner of opposite sex. He is my first spouse, and the father of both our children. We have 2.5 kids--meaning, two kids and a really sweet dog. We have very little debt. Heck, we don't even have a car payment. We don't have cable. One parent stays home with the children full-time. We do not let our kids watch inapproprate television, nor do we expose them to music … [Read more...]

In the End, There’s Cake

My kids have birthdays this week. They will be 2 and 4. And while I know this is where I'm supposed to say "I can't believe how fast they're growing up!" what I really think is, I can't remember a time when they weren't around. In many ways, they've been with me forever.The almost 2-year-old has a new favorite word--why. And, as only a small child can do, he throws this one-word question around as though it had three-syllables, rather than one...uh-WHY-ee. (Kind of sounds like 'hawaii.') … [Read more...]

The One Where I’m the Grownup

Find a person who is good at what they do, and ask them a simple question: who shaped you for this? I'm willing to bet that the person you're talking to is more than ready with a litany of people who helped mold them for leadership. Whether their career path is ministry, teaching, business, art, media, or some kind of trade, ANYbody who has managed to get good at something will be able to tell you who first (and best) modelled that vocation for them. Just sit back and hear the story.I can no … [Read more...]

For Life

I mean... way to say it out loud, Mr. Akin. Your ignorance may be astounding--horrific, even--but you are teaching us a valuable lesson. The moral of the story is--this is what single-issue voting will get you.I'm one of many, many people of faith in this country: who are pro-choice, but anti-abortion. If you think that is an oxymoron, stick with me here. I think that abortion is sad and awful, and should not be used as an alternative to birth control, or as a matter of convenience. That … [Read more...]

Freedom, Rights, and Chicken Fights

Are we done talking about chicken yet?? Law...I know i chimed in my own two cents on the issue. I'm almost sorry now that i contributed--even in such a miniscule fashion--to a matter that turned into an epic media frenzy and resulted in a pretty ugly day in social networking. I'm tired of hearing about it. Eat chicken, don't eat chicken. Follow the muppets, follow Mike Huckabee. I'm over it.Thing is--you know and I know--it's not about the chicken.It is one more seemingly small opportunity … [Read more...]

To Be

I started getting in trouble for my 'to be' verbs in junior AP English. It was my favorite class of my whole school experience, but it was also the point at which i realized i was not the greatest writer of all time. (WHAT???) My teacher, the legendary Mrs. McNulty, would take a red ink pen and circle every be, is and was, leaving the whole thing in a marked-up red mess for my further revision.I didn't really get what the big deal was, until I saw what happened when i had to eliminate those … [Read more...]

S*^! Jesus Says: The Missionary Edition

"Good afternoon. My name is **Jane** and I'm with **Betterthanyou** ministries. I was wondering if you'd like to meet with one of our missionaries and learn more about how to share the gospel of Jesus with our Jewish brothers and sisters?"Oh, girlfriend. You are barking up the wrong cactus... And THIS is why i usually don't answer the office phones in the afternoon, unless it is a name i recognize on that caller i.d.You know how you think of the right thing to say, about 4 seconds after … [Read more...]