A Sign and a Wonder

light1

Every year, in what i call "stewardship season," i revisit Brueggeman's "The Liturgy of Abundance." I have come to love this season in the life of the church, which is ironic, because it used to scare me to death. Appropriate that it came around Halloween, really. Like many clergy, I left seminary feeling pretty good about the 3 P's--preaching, program and pastoral care--but utterly inept and ill-equipped for the administrative work of the church.Many things have changed that, including … [Read more...]

Soul Seasons

mazda62

A pumpkin latte in my hand. From Not Starbuck's. A cool crisp 62 degrees out. I am on a porch swing with a background of lush foliage, bleeding slowly from green into reds and browns and yellows. I am wearing my favorite brown sweatshirt, and reading a really great library book. The day ahead is miraculously full of nothing but open time, save playing with my kids, and later having some friends over for dinner.OK, so almost none of those things is true. I do, in fact, have a pumpkin(ish) … [Read more...]

For Such a Time as This

peace-pole (1)

I was sitting on the floor of my crummy first-year-of-being-a-grownup apartment, doing grad school homework that i should have done the night before, and getting ready to go to class. Which means I probably shouldn't have been watching tv, but was. When the plane hit the first tower, i went and woke up my roommate, who was still sleeping. "What? That's crazy!" she said. I ran quickly back to the tv to find out what a breathless world was waiting to find out--what sort of mechanical error, … [Read more...]

The Sacred Struggle

I was cooking dinner and trying not to get sucked in. It is only September. Of the year BEFORE the election year. I am not ready for the emotional angst, the loaded sermon fodder, the toxic wasteland that is partisan rhetoric. It was on in the background, but I was determined not to engage.When I heard the applause, I turned around. I'm listening now,  i thought numbly. I looked to see if I'd really heard what I'd just heard. My husband and I looked at each other, appalled. "Rewind that," I … [Read more...]

Suck it Up

thumb

Ok, she is almost 3. I've tried to be patient. I've read all the warm-fuzzy parenting stuff about letting them work it out on their own, hounding them about it will just make it worse, attachment issues and comfort zones, blah blah blah. But now, it is time.The thumb has got to go.I remember the blessed day when, around 6 weeks of age, I watched my sweet baby girl learn that she had the powers of coordination needed to get that appendage into her toothless mouth, all by herself. I … [Read more...]

A Cup of the Good Stuff

india

When's the last time you got out the good china?After I went on and on yesterday about the blessedness of a messy house, I think I should clarify--though I blamed the chaos on the kiddos, I have to own that much (much) of the mess is mine. And not quite so much of it is my husband's. He does his best to keep some order, but he is only one person. Much like my mother (and oh, they do talk about me) he finally stops cleaning up after me so that I will one day go oh, my, this place is a … [Read more...]

Bless This Mess (without the stress)

mess

Listen to me, young folks in your 20's, figuring out what you're going to be--I want to tell you something. You can, in fact, have it all. You can have a meaningful, fulfilling career, AND a healthy, happy family. Those who say you cannot are haters, so don't listen to them. You can do both and live. It is possible.What you will probably not have--nay, what you will never have, in that particular life combination--is a clean house. Just live with it. You will be happier, and so will your … [Read more...]

Joyful Noise

I never know who "they" are, but "they" say you should start reading to your baby very young. In-utero, if possible. When they are very small, long before the sounds make words, the rhythm of your voice is soothing. It lulls them to sleep. It connects them to the sound of you. While they are small enough to be still in your arms and not try to escape, the joy of reading takes root in them. Meanwhile, word by word, something like language begins to take shape. It starts out as white noise, but … [Read more...]

Unknown

unknown1

It was a rare (RARE) Saturday afternoon moment. Both kids were asleep at the same time, and my spouse was out of the house. I had just settled into the good chair with a library book, and the phone rang. I glanced over and there it was...the "unknown caller."What do you do? I almost never answer. Especially not on a Saturday, when there are sleeping babies and good books to be read.  It was almost a no-brainer.And yet, this time, I answered. For whatever reason. And it was my brother, ca … [Read more...]


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