There Are No Experts

I listened carefully as the man in the center of the room, a well-respected black civil rights activist, shared about his years of experience in community organizing and advocacy. Then he said a word that made my insides clench in shock: “Orientals.” I hoped it was a slip of the tongue. Surely a longtime native […]

Where Stories Intersect

  I wouldn’t call us close friends. We had gone to school together our entire childhood. I remember her easygoing attitude, the big grin and contagious laugh. We had mutual friends, sat in some of the same classes and attended a lot of sleepovers together. Still, as adults our lives went in different directions and […]

Emmanuel and Showing Up

The first few days of Advent, I felt irrationally angry. I tried to call it irritable, or easily annoyed, but when I sat down to dig through it all what I found was anger. Advent is an invitation to the waiting, and frankly, I would like to decline. No thanks. Can’t come. Wish I could […]

Why Does Twitter Terrify Me?

Why does using my words terrify me so much? Let’s start out with a confession: Twitter terrifies me. I got my handle a few years ago. The day my friend Melissa explained to me how she manages her twitter account, makes lists, what she posts, and what a hashtag is, my heart thudded in my […]

Bridge Over Broken

Break. Shatter. Fracture. Rift. The words we use to describe the end of a relationship are all about being broken to pieces. When a close friendship ended in the bitter cold of winter, I was surprised to be staring at the deepest, hardest grief I have ever felt. I refused to believe that I needed […]

This is a Post About Loss

This is a post about loss. I write this over and over again. Ambling through the labyrinth trying to think of just the right thing to say. I don’t think there is a right thing anymore. If you haven’t become an intimate friend with loss, with the emptiness that comes from the missing, then you […]

For Those Who Love Jesus, but . . .

I didn’t mean to stay for three hours. And it was more than the rose leaf tea, more than the endless Super Why episodes she put on for my three-year-old. It was more than the familiar story of young love and marriage, or the moment we both confessed that our moms are our best friends […]

I thought I’d do a new friend a favor and not make friends at all

I realized Joy went to church with me on Pentecost Sunday. I sat with my parents at the special outdoor service, held in the local high school stadium. In the bleachers before the service, I shaded my eyes with my hand to see the stage. There was a girl up there. A girl my age. […]

Community: Slamming Doors and Kitchen Messes

I was 19 and had nowhere to go. I had been couch surfing for nearly a year and was running out of options. A friend and I had talked about going out to Chicago to check out a Christian community known for its ministry to lost hippies and punks and the homeless, as well as […]