Releasing All But the Main Thing

 “In every circumstance, regardless of the outcome, the main thing Jesus has asked me to do is to love God and my neighbor as religiously as I love myself. The minute I have that handled, I will ask for my next assignment. For now, my hands are full.”[1]   The Main Thing is Seeing All […]

Complication and Contentment

My first place was a two-bedroom apartment with a little porch that overlooked the lush green of Richmond, Virginia. I was a single mom of a curious two-year-old, so an apartment on the third floor added an extra layer of complication to my coming and going, but I preferred the inconvenience over the sound of […]

A Few Simple Words

A recent Twitter thread asked for folks to respond with six words that could change the world (with the hashtag #6wordworldchange). People responded with statements such as: “Help me understand what you mean.” “This is hard. I need help.” “I believe you. I’ll help you.” “I was wrong. Please forgive me.” “You have something to […]

The Simplest Gift

My nine-year-old broke his arm last weekend. He came running into the house with his arm in a weird zigzag and his younger siblings trailing in his wake. All three were gibbering away in a shell-shocked, confused kind of way. I bellowed at everyone to be quiet and then sent my patient into the kitchen […]

Elemental

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: Ecclesiastes 3:1 (KJV)   On this, my first empty-nested Mother’s Day, I am reminded of the goodness of the Lord. My babies are all grown-up-ish. This season of mothering has come to its end. God has a purpose for […]

True (Ghost) Stories

Dear Reader, There are those songs we all have in our heads . . . Some come and go. Others settle in for a season. Then there are the few that linger the longest—part of ghosts from the past, perhaps, that we can’t quite shake. This month’s theme, the virtue of simplicity, conjured up a […]

The Rightness of Clothes

You know that thing where you show up for a fashion show in such amazing clothes that the photographers there assume you’re Someone Famous and photograph you? But actually you’re a sixty-something Fordham social work professor and just have really fabulous taste? And because of that photo shoot, you become a fashion icon, model, and […]

The Comfortable Lie

The lie is ingrained so deeply in my heart that I have to make conscious efforts to untangle my life from its clutches. This lie clutters my home, my very soul—the one that says comfort and contentment are one. Life in the Middle East was anything but comfortable, any sense of ease in life gone. […]

Simply Beautiful

I’ve longed to be one of those women who can throw on a plain white t-shirt and jeans and look effortlessly stunning. They gather their hair in an “I can’t be bothered” pony tail; their unadorned skin glows, flawless. They travel light through this world, floating serenely with one chic carry-on while the rest of […]

Cleaning Out the Clutter in My Soul

I have a secret addiction. It started out as this little thing. Everyone else swears it is harmless, even helpful. But its influence grew stronger in my life. It became indispensable . It’s my smartphone and I want to throw it out the window! I was pretty late to the whole world of being connected […]