An Empty House

A Tao of Christmas shopping, from a wannabe minimalist:So, i buy most of my kids' clothes at consignment sales. Also sell stuff there, so i almost break even. I go to this one sale twice a year (because it is at my church and i get to shop early!) While i'm shopping for clothes, i also keep my eyes peeled for good toys at super cheap prices. I buy a few here and there, so by the time Christmas rolls around, I buy each kid one new thing, and i'm pretty much done. They get about 4 gifts each, … [Read more...]

Like Frosty Said… the Sun Was Hot That Day

I think i say this, or something like it, every year of the world. But, here it is again:It is really, really hard to get into Advent and Christmas mode when it is 80-degrees and sunny outside. There's something just downright apocolyptic about driving down a scenic desert highway, with gorgeous views and sunshine, and hearing 'Holly Jolly Christmas" or "Frosty the Snowman"  come on the radio. Nevermind the fact that 'Holly Jolly" is just about the worst song in the history of the world...it … [Read more...]

Top 10 Reasons Christians Should Stop Whining About Secular Xmas

"Keep Christ in Christmas!" "Jesus is the reason for the season!" "It's OK to say Merry Christmas!"I don't disagree with any of these statements. However, as a PR rep for Jesus, I cringe whenever I see them printed on a sign somewhere. I know we all lament the commercialization of a sacred day; I know that it's frustrating to see something so meaningful reduced to plastic snowmen and frozen fruitcakes. That said, it's not worth getting all offended by a 'season's greetings' card, or a … [Read more...]

til by Turning, Turning, We Come ‘Round Right

Spoiler alert: if you are coming to Foothills for worship tomorrow and you want to be surprised, wait and read this on Monday.Over six years ago, when i first walked into the sanctuary at Foothills, what i saw with my eye and what i saw with my heart were two different things. My eye saw a space that was much-loved, though cared for with limited resources. Bright (i mean bright!) paint colors that detracted from the beautiful stain glass; old carpet; a communion table and pulpit in synthetic … [Read more...]

Practicing Gratitude

I've gotta say... for all the junk and crazy-making stuff that floats around on facebook, i'm finding the daily 'thankful' posts a blessed relief. In case you haven't noticed--many people challenge themselves, during the month of November, to give thanks for something every day of the month.  People share their gratitude for everything from health and family to simple daily blessings--good food, good coffee, the smell of laundry on a weekday evening. All told, sifting through my newsfeed these da … [Read more...]

We The People

I was inspired and encouraged by the people I saw at the polls this morning. Not just the by the number of them, but by their diversity. Young and old; men and women; affluent and otherwise; Hispanic, Indian, Anglo, and citizens of European heritage, speaking to their children in native tongues...In this season of Thanksgiving, I am extremely grateful for our founding fathers, and their vision of democracy; for the generations of men and women who have protected our freedom; for women who foug … [Read more...]

Joy in the Morning

The day after tomorrow, we may still not know who the president is. But perhaps we'll have gotten over trying to change the minds and hearts of those who we feel are voting against us.There are a couple of things wrong with that statement. 1-that we think we can change people's minds and hearts, and 2-that we feel the folks in the other party are voting against us. Against us, personally. Those are the things wrong with that statement--but that is exactly where we are.I care very much who … [Read more...]

Scattered and Sown

So this farmer went out with a bunch of seeds. And he scattered them far and wide. Some fell on the road, so the road runners ate them. Some fell on the red rock; those seeds sprouted quickly, but their roots didn't go very deep. The saplings whithered and died in the blazing sun, and the remains were trampled by coyotes. Some fell in the dry and thorny weeds; those seeds never had a chance. And some of those seeds fell on rich, fertile, life-filled soil, and grew forth abundant … [Read more...]

Scent of the Sacred

Best smells for the soul:fresh lavender. or basil. cut christmas tree. my favorite leather jacket. library books. my kids, just out of the bath. laundry. an old church fellowship hall. morning coffee. my husband's t-shirt. just-blown-out birthday candles. honeysuckle in the kentucky springtime. rain in the desert, anytime. onions cooking in olive oil. bread baking. (baking anything). tobacco hanging in my grandparents' barn.I love to go for a walk about 30 minutes before dark. Partly because … [Read more...]


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