How Not to Lose Your Footing on a Tilt-a-Whirl

I admit to being a bit spoiled: my husband hardly travels much for work anymore. Now, as a church planter, we practice staying put, putting down roots, being placed. (How else, can we plant an outpost for God’s kingdom if we’re always moving on?) But over the holidays, I sent him off on a plane […]

When Sacrifice Yields Life: Leaning into One Another

I got something really big, really wrong this year. It came out of a sincere desire to make a difference and what I thought was an ingenious invention. I love to leverage the offerings of concerned citizens (donors, activists, front lines service providers) to meet needs and fill gaps. For years, I have galvanized our […]

The Mystery of Breaking Bread

I’m sitting on the washing machine, finishing my coffee, waiting for the timer to go off. My Eucharist bread is in the oven. “This cup is the new covenant.” I’ve been hearing pastors and priests say that for thirty years, in little Baptist churches and at fabulous Catholic mass. Priests in robes, holding chalice and […]

Fighting for Community (or Fading Away)

I know what it must feel like to be a ghost. I am haunting the life I used to live but haven’t moved on yet, hanging out on the fringes of what I once called mine. I watch everyone around me go about their days as they always have but I am on the outside […]

A Reflection on Finding Community in the Church

“It’s hard to find community,” they say. I sit across from them at Starbucks or at my dining table and listen to them share about the difficulty of finding people they connect to, people with whom they can build a solid friendship and grow together in faith. “They” have been college students, single young adults, […]

When We Don’t Want Others To Belong

  I’m looking for spaces that are a homecoming. I’m realizing it’s not easy to find places of true belonging and it’s even harder to be a person who offers it. I don’t know a single person who doesn’t want to belong, but I know many who want to disconnect, to distance, to separate and […]

My Improbable Love of “Happy Birthday”

I should get bonus points when I surprise my friend Shoshana: she’s remarkably unflappable. If I’d told her I was getting a giant bat tattoo on my behind, she’d probably nod and say, “Oh, interesting.” But the other day on the phone, when I told her I love it when people sing “Happy Birthday” to […]

From Information to Transformation

I have worked in several organizations where personality tests were a common language, sometimes they became a default for conversation or the butt of many jokes. It was not uncommon to be able to identify strengths, introversion or extroversion or a myriad of other descriptors of one’s work, communication or social style. While this was […]

A Different Kind of Unity

Wherever I found religion in my life I found strife, the attempt of one individual or group to rule another in the name of God. The naked will to power seemed always to walk in the wake of a hymn. – Richard Wright   Nestled between the land masses we call Illinois, Wisconsin, and Michigan, […]