Waiting and Giving

My eldest daughter caught on to the concept of “Christmas as gift-giving” long before she caught on to the concept of “Christmas as a single day.” As a preschooler, she’d spend the weeks leading up to Christmas wrapping anything and everything she could find around the house in towels, pillowcases, tissues, etc., before giving them, […]

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I’m in the city that never sleeps, and neither can I. Fifty-eight floors above are surely enough to free me from the fray below. But even way up here I can’t escape the truth that me and this metropolis are soulmates. Because in spite of every virtuous reason it shouldn’t, like this place my heart […]

The Point of Christmas

I never understand more than at Christmas why people become atheists. Often I can understand it and empathize with the feelings and questions that led people there, but at Christmastime, I feel it so much more. It just makes sense. Jesus was born, and where did that get the people of his village, which probably […]

Coloring In Christmas With My Favorite Things

  Raindrops on rooftops and polka dot mittens Bright lights that flicker and Big Momma’s kitchen Brown chorus angels whose robes look like wings These are a few of my favorite things. Buttermilk cornbread and crisp chicken drumsticks Hotels with stairwells and greens that are handpicked Wildflowers that spread in dry deserts I’ve seen These […]

Longing for Rest

I say a prayer over both kids instead of praying for them individually as I do when I take my time. I rush through my usual night script: “IloveyouDaddylovesyouButwholovesyouthemost?” and they yell back, “God!” My “good night” barely slips through the door I’m already closing behind me, and my whole body sighs. I’m done. I’m […]

Advent Waiting

Waiting is difficult. My six-year-old daughter could tell you exactly how difficult it is to wait, if you asked her. Multiple times a day, she explodes like a firecracker into whatever I am doing at the moment, demanding my full and immediate attention. Sometimes, I can grant her request. But sometimes, she has to wait. […]

Coffee Cups and Emmanuel

 I knew now… why I could feel homesick at home. — G.K. Chesterton   O Come O Come Emmanuel And ransom captive Israel That mourns in lonely exile here Until the Son of God appear   Coffee cups I don’t remember much of the particulars of that conversation. I remember fumbling around for words as my […]

Feasting on Liturgy

When I left the Evangelical church for an Anglican one in college, it was out of proximity rather than theology. I had decided to attend university in France and there were very few English-speaking churches in Paris. As a freshman in college living abroad, I sought the ease of a community that spoke my native […]

When You Can’t Find the Merry in Your Christmas

It’s here whether we like it or not—Christmas. For many this season is filled with the fullness of family togetherness. The turkey with all the trimmings. It is the time for unwrapping the red-ribbon-gift we placed first on our list. It is the season of sparkly lights and the steady fragrance of evergreen. Cut trees […]

The Point of Christmas

I never understand more than at Christmas why people become atheists. Often I can understand it and empathize with the feelings and questions that led people there, but at Christmastime, I feel it so much more. It just makes sense. Jesus was born, and where did that get the people of his village, which probably […]

The Cost of Peace

I stare into the gleaming white lights of the Christmas tree until they blur together and dance across my vision, that tree adorned with symbols of peace and hope: The star that lights the way to the one who delivers. The angel that sings of peace on earth. The manger that holds the hope of […]

My Prayer for This Season: Rescue Us from Ourselves

The days leading up to and after Thanksgiving I was bombarded with ad after ad for Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday. They were shouting at me, enticing me, telling me “good news” in the midst of hard times. Free shipping! Buy One Get One! Lowest prices of the year! Such sweet words to my […]