The “wish dream” must die! Musings on intimacy from Ruby Sparks

None of you know this, but I write fiction.  Writing bad fiction is a bit like being an omnipotent God, in the most "omni" sense of the word.  I will characters into existence and then shape them to do my bidding, to move my story towards whatever end I desire.  They're protagonists or antagonists.  They're heroes or villians.  They're sexy and alluring or not.  But whatever else they are I know this:  they're boring and predictable. This is because I created them, rather than doing what real fic … [Read more...]

The Piano – and the painful goodness of letting go

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I didn't know on Saturday night that they'd be the last notes I'd play on it.  I sat down a few minutes before a woman came in response to our Craig's list ad and touched the keys with a tune I made up on the fly.  It's what I do best with pianos.  Those pesky notes from Bach or Mozart have always felt too confining for me.  So I simply sit and play, letting the music well up from my soul and pour out over the keys.  I've done that multiple hundreds of times on this piano.  It's been a friend.  L … [Read more...]

Unlocking Potential by Practicing Presence

Everything can be taken from a man or a woman but one thing: the last of human freedoms to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one's own way. - Victor FranklDo you ever wish you were somewhere else?  Of course you do! You wish you were on the other side of that right light which is holding you back from where you want to be.  You wish you were at a job that pays more, or is energizing rather than mind numbing.  You wish you were with a spouse that is harder wo … [Read more...]

Sex, Shame, and the Gospel… resources for conversation

We Christians, especially in America, are terrible at having healthy conversations about sexuality and sexual ethics.  The landscape of these conversations are ripe with charges, counter-charges, fear, and sweeping judgements, so much so that when I write about sexuality, I need to read all the comments carefully so as to remove the hateful words that inevitably show up, offered in the name of "staying true to the faith" or "holiness" or some other such nonsense, in much the same way that the … [Read more...]

If you give a moose a muffin… and other kinds of repentance

The best children's book series, in my opinion, is the "If you give..." series.  I like it because it speaks to the realities of cause and affect, and the importance of what Peter would call the "day of visitation", but does so in a way that children and even adults can understand.  Each book begins with someone giving an animal something edible, and then this simple act leads to another act, and another act, and another act, until the day is filled with nothing that was originally anticipated.  … [Read more...]


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