The Mercy Instinct

As a pastor, I see it time and time and time again: a person has been deeply wounded by a loved-one. They struggle to process the world through this new lens of heartbreak. It doesn't matter if it is a sibling, a spouse, a friend, or a parent/child relationship --we are hurt most profoundly by those we love. It is, in fact, the cost of loving, and perhaps the most painful cost of being a person.What I notice, time (and time) again, is the impulse of grace that comes into most relationships at … [Read more...]

The English Major Diet: Valentine’s Day Edition

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Like many of you, I have mixed feelings about Valentine's Day. I'm all for telling our loved ones that they are...well, loved. But needing a special day to do it is kind of like needing New Year's to make a resolution. Mostly, the whole day is a commercialized fiasco that wastes a bunch of paper, feeds kids too much sugar, and makes single people feel like they are missing something. All the while, real and lasting love dissolves into Hallmark processed cheese, and all the sparkly princess … [Read more...]

A Profound and Prophetic Response

BOYCOTT JCPENNEY! WE DON"T WANT TO THINK ABOUT GAY PEOPLE WHEN WE"RE SHOPPING FOR OUR MOM JEANS!STOP FUNDING PLANNED PARENTHOOD! WE DON"T WANT TO THINK ABOUT POOR WOMEN WHILE WE RUN TO SAVE THE WORLD!TAKE THE LOWE"S AD OFF THE MUSLIM PROGRAMMING! WE DON"T WANT TO THINK ABOUT...WE DON"T WANT TO THINK ABOUT--well, anything at all--WHILE WE ARE RECAULKING OUR TOILETS!!*VOTE FOR NEWT!-- "IF THEY"RE GOING TO DIE, THEY"D BETTER DO IT--AND DECREASE THE SURPLUS POPULATION..."Yes, some of our … [Read more...]

Grace Anatomy

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Raise your hand and jump up and down like a girl if you are super excited for the season premier of Grey's Anatomy tonight!!  I know, I know, it's only a tv show. Maybe it's because, though the calendar says fall, it is still 100+ degress in the valley of the sun, and i'll cling to anything that reminds me a new season has begun. Technically. Maybe it's because my whole family has been feeling crummy for the past few weeks, and I'm looking forward to some vegging out time after the kids are … [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

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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

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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...]

Bless This Mess (without the stress)

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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...]


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