Saying Yes to My Hunger for Mystery

I felt grown-up in a borrowed pair of strappy heels and a new ivory eyelet dress, carefully chosen so it wouldn’t show through my white confirmation robe. My friends and I gathered on the church lawn to pose for pictures. After dozens of dignified shots, we flapped our arms for a silly photo, pretending the […]

Pavlov’s Dogs, My Senator, and Knowing God

In Mark 10, a blind man named Bartimaeus sits by the side of the road literally screaming for Jesus’ help. When Jesus finally addresses him, he asks, “What do you want me to do for you?” I love that question. Jesus wants to know what Bartimaeus wants, presumably to give him exactly what he wants. […]

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 […]

Abandoning God

We have been experiencing a bit of a thaw here in the Midwest, so the air has spring smell about it. The mud, the warmth, the melted snow, have fooled us all into thinking that spring is here. Growing up in Alaska, we generally had one thaw per year, in late April. Unlike other places […]

Sitting on the Fringe

  I pass by the holy water font without pausing, fifty-three years of reflex gone. I slide into a pew tucked in the back corner of the cavernous church, an arm’s reach from the flickering votive candles. An arm’s reach from the nearest exit. It was not always thus between you and I. I spent […]

The Night I Almost Stopped Being a Christian

The night I almost stopped being a Christian anymore, I sat alone, at midnight, in the living room of the house I shared with three other women. I was twenty-two, almost six months out of college, depressed, and despairing. I’d discovered I was depressed in my therapist’s office the summer before. The revelation was like […]

It All Started When I Owned my Doubt

  “Owning our story can be hard but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it.” ~Brene Brown The questions started out small. They bugged me, but they weren’t scary. Nothing that couldn’t be solved by switching churches or rethinking the way I voted. My undoing began when the deep questions erupted. […]