Hope

The Girl Who Was Born Dead

“We’ll have to put you to sleep.” I remember the mask going over my face, and then nothing. Darkness. I heard the words “fetal distress” and “slowed heartbeat”. No time to wait, they said. No time to wait. * It was Christmas Eve. An epidural wasn’t going to be enough. I already had two epidurals, […]

Having Courage to Hold On

Can you love someone who has betrayed you? In a mix of Norwegian fairytales (influenced by the Greek Cupid and Psyche and European Beauty and the Beast), author Joanna Meyer weaves a tale that feels familiar and foreign in her book Echo North. A young woman named Echo agrees to live in a house with […]

Where Truth Lies

You’ve seen it. In rush-hour traffic or the drop-off lane. Bumper Sticker Theology: Big letters. Bright backgrounds. Bold and brief statements . . . About eternity. A precursor to the Socials’ holy eye candy, Christian bumper stickers pack the one-two punch of VISIBILITY and IRRITABILITY for captive audiences. Like their political counterparts, critics have responded […]

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 […]

Serving Simply

As I walked down the uneven sidewalk, I was overwhelmed by the sheer amount of people swarming past me. Many carried umbrellas (though there wasn’t a cloud in the sky), some impossibly napped while squatting, while many others walked oblivious to the body spaces of others. This was a typical day walking in a city […]

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 […]

In the Dirt

“Why don’t you try listening first?” my kids asked. Ouch. Those words struck and halted me in my tracks. I had retorted a response too soon, and immediately felt that pain in the pit of my stomach and a wave of regret. Have you been there, too? Spoken words too quickly and wish you had […]

The Most Honest Thing

The magical, white fairy lights look almost friendly on this forest-dark night. There they are, wrapped around the cables swooping from one side of the rushing river to the other. And from those steel ropes hangs a suspension bridge—the bridge that stands between my little family and our cozy cabin on the far side of […]

Filling the Pot: Learning to Wait

Recently, I thought about how many things I was watching and waiting for. How many hours have I spent, how many thoughts, and how much time have I devoted to watching and waiting? Life is replete with hopeful expectations and moments of waiting. Watching means we’re often waiting for something, but waiting sounds horribly inconvenient […]

The Mystery of Patience with God

Many people started new hobbies or interests during the lockdown. They learned how to sew; they made home improvements; they even watched new genres of shows. I myself had two new obsessions: plants and mystery novels. I now have over 37 plants in my home office. It is a veritable forest in here, and I […]

Enduring Patience

Patience. We wait. We wait for deliverance. We wait for the moment we are saved from trials.   And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience And patience, experience; and experience, hope: Romans 5:3-4 KJV   My father waited patiently for that moment of deliverance. He lay face down […]

These Three Lines

Creepy Lines His classmates trickle into school, trapped Brady-Bunch style in their respective squares. Each boasts a customized backdrop: outer space, Minecraft, background blur, a zoo . . . and Mom-zilla fixing to eat her offspring for breakfast. “Your mom must be thrilled with your background!” my son’s teacher types in the chat. I read […]

Tree Hugger

I am a literal tree hugger, and my husband can vouch for it. I’ve embarrassed him often by curling my arms and cheek around a gnarly old trunk. My favorite trees are the sprawling, ancient live oaks that grow where I grew up. We planted one in our backyard a few summers ago, a tiny […]

At the Table: A Place of Stability in a Multicultural Family

Stability. How do you create stability in a changing world? One way is to hold on to tradition and customs. Customs carry the thread of story into the next generation. Food carries story. Not only through its flavors, but with stories that are passed on along with it at the table. There are dishes prepared […]

Learning to Linger

He peered at me from under his unruly bangs of brown fur, hidden in part by the grate of the cage. I commented on how much he looked like my own Yorkie, Junior, though this dog was much smaller and where Junior’s fur was a silvery grey, his was a black that accentuated his small […]

What’s in Amanda Gorman’s Name

You know her titles: National Youth Poet Laureate. Inaugural poet (youngest ever). Harvard University graduate. Super Bowl show-stopper. Amanda Gorman: The one with her hand uniquely positioned on the pulse of a nation past, present, and future. But from a recent interview with Michelle Obama (Time Magazine),1did you know this about her name? “President Biden […]