Go forth and get Me butter, says the Lord.

not butter

Once upon a time, there was a young woman who was hosting Thanksgiving dinner for the first time. She wanted—no, needed—everything to be perfect. She planned and prepped for days, chopping vegetables, rolling dough, scrubbing baseboards, and counting silverware. On the day of the feast, she was up with the sun, full of determination and manic good cheer. As the day wore on, the good cheer waned and the manic levels rose. Pots boiled over and were turned down; ovens smoked and windows were open … [Read more...]

The Splat Life

wrong-trousers-med

 The train is whizzing out of control, and he can't get off, slow down, or change course. In desperation, Gromit snatches a box of spare tracks and frantically lays them on the floor ahead, just split seconds before the train he's on thunders over them. This is more or less what it's like to raise a child. Yes, you have to work frantically to stay ahead of that train; but no, you're not exactly in control. Read the rest at the Register.  … [Read more...]

Other people’s blessings

  I've had to remind myself, over and over again, that couples who really do love NFP aren't just lying. The "Oh, how I love the monthly cycle of courtship and honeymoon!" crowd haven't drunk any Kool-Aid. They're not necessarily undersexed, brainwashed saps who have never encountered true suffering.   They're just different from me, and if I expect them to respect my struggles, then I need to learn to respect their joy. Read the rest at the Register.  … [Read more...]

Discernment: What It Does and Doesn’t Mean

One example of the wrong way to discern God's will in your life

It does mean: The Holy Spirit works kind of like MSG, enhancing and heightening the "flavor" of the virtues that you've already worked to develop -- virtues like self-control, prudence, mercy, and self-sacrifice.  After you pray for guidance, you're probably not going to find yourself doing something utterly foreign to your normal nature or inclinations; but you may find that you have deeper reserves of patience than you expected, for instance, or a temporary ability to work harder than you're no … [Read more...]

Catholics with a Past

"The man who has not suffered, what can he possibly know, anyway?" says Rabbi Abraham Herschel. He may be onto something. When we look for insight and understanding, we go to someone who has been wronged, and who has come out stronger and wiser: survivors of wars, genocide, concentration camps; people who have overcome massive disabilities; people who have been abused and outcast, and who have responded with love, gentleness, generosity, and wisdom. But what about the man who caused his own suf … [Read more...]

Faith, reason, depression, and help

bug in a jar

  There's a lot of bad information about depression, suicide, and faith swirling around the internet this week. Here are a few things I know:No, depression and mental illness don't necessarily take away your free will, turning you into a helpless victim who wings straight to Heaven if you commit suicide.No, you can't just pray away the sadness, will yourself to be joyful, or do this one weird trick that will earn you emotional stability and peace.The truth lies, as i … [Read more...]

At the Register: A New (Old) Way to Apologize

The teacher started scheduling weekly "clean-ups."Students relished in the opportunity to admit wrongdoing, share intent to change, and restore friendships. It was a beautiful, beautiful thing. They walked out stiff and uneasy, and returned with bright smiles on their faces.Sound familiar? Read the rest at the Register. … [Read more...]


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