• Christian Living,  Christian Teaching,  Family,  God,  Jesus Christ,  Kingdom,  Love

    Not Peace, but a Sword

    Growing up Christian meant toddling into the idea that Jesus is a friend, that God so loved the world, that we are brothers and sisters and children of one Creator. I never had the chance to wonder about humanity’s worth or our place in the universe. We were here to be loved and to love. Christianity, like a mother, brought me into the world and she raised me in what she believed was true. But along with that idea came a lot of weird shit. There was a period I only wore long skirts and could not listen to any music with a drum beat without begging for forgiveness. What…

  • God,  Grief,  Jesus Christ,  Kingdom,  life,  Love

    Now

    Often beside a cluttered kitchen, overlooking a disaster of a living room, my family sits down to eat dinner (usually later than I’d like to admit). At the table next to a lamp we have a little chalkboard on which I write quotes I want to remember, things I want us to see everyday.¬†Lately we have been memorizing this passage from the Talmud¬†while we eat Do not be daunted by the enormity of the world’s grief. Do justly, love mercy, walk humbly now. You are not obligated to complete the work, but neither are you free to abandon it. We say “enormity” round and wide. We say “NOW” loud and…

  • Christian Living,  Community,  God,  Jesus Christ,  Kingdom,  Love,  Uncategorized

    Something Small

       I wanted to be a missionary for a handful of years, did I ever tell you that? I spent a good amount of formative time in a culture which offered few acceptable options for young girls. I could choose between being a teacher in a Christian school, a pastor’s wife or a missionary[‘s wife]. Getting married was a given and it was tolerable to be the wife of a layman so long as we were faithful to our local gathering. There was an uspoken heirarchy of life choices and the most obvious were at the top. Even our language belied our bias – there were those who “served,” who…

  • Christian Living,  God,  Jesus Christ,  Kingdom,  Legalism,  Love

    A Liberating Whore Story

      We have all read the story in John – nowhere else – about the woman caught in adultery. We have all been taught how Jesus inaugurated a new way to fulfill the law – and we have put ourselves in the tangled sandals of the woman. We have read it and closed our bibles grateful that Jesus doesn’t condemn us, but saves us from condemnation and tells us plainly to “sin no more.” But grace folds over in grace when I walk across the temple’s dirt to the Pharisees. When I see through their eyes her face flushed red with shame and fear. She’s been found out and her lover…

  • Birth,  God,  Jesus Christ,  Kingdom,  Love,  Pregnancy,  Worship

    Eve & Mary & A Baby Bump

    Life swells. Like a bruise, like a flower. It hiccups and blossoms and jolts about with new growth and this is never more clear than during pregnancy. And Mary’s swollen stomach wasn’t the start, wasn’t the end, but was in the middle of this growing, this death-becoming-life. We get word pictures of creation in labor at the moment of Jesus’ arrival. As this ordinary Jewish woman felt a miracle in her womb, every living cell felt it, too. But it wasn’t the beginning of a story toward redemption and it wasn’t the end of the work to be done. It was a climax. I love that image of Eve and…

  • Birth,  Christian Living,  Homebirth,  Jesus Christ,  Kingdom,  Motherhood,  Pregnancy

    When Midwife Means Missionary

    Because every woman deserves to know how capable she is. That her creator has endowed her with the strength of lions and wind and oceans. That she has been chosen among humans to weave together Life in her womb and that the work it takes to separate herself from that life is heroic. Every woman. Here, there, everywhere. Every woman. Because fear has no place in the carved out space God intended for Life and someone needs to tell it to get out. Carrie, the woman who assisted in the births of my children, who has been a friend and mentor here in my early mothering is amazing in her…

  • Beauty,  Cancer,  Christian Living,  God,  Jesus Christ,  Kingdom,  Love,  Worship

    In The Likely Event that I Don't Get a Yearly Update In the Mail

    I didn’t get the Christmas New Year card out. Maybe I’ll squeeze it into the “Hey, we’re only a few days in and you know, life so it’s still acceptable for you to receive this” window. Probably not. I didn’t get the card out to tell everyone what a stupid, awesome, horrible, beautiful year we had. And I feel more compelled than I have in other years because this was a year. I mean, a damn year. This year earned her place in nostalgia – good and bad and ugly and lovely all swirling together in our memories. This year we saw God so.close. So up in our business that…

  • Christian Living,  God,  Jesus Christ,  Kingdom,  Love,  Worship

    How to Deal with "The World"

    So we want to make sure the world knows it’s broken? I see… We want to make sure we don’t feel alone in our brokenness. Because that is a scary thought, right? Being the worst… Being the most broken, the most messed up, the most hurtful and in-need-of-grace. Okay, I get it. But you know something? You are the worst. And you know what else? That is more than okay. Because of the one who loved us while we were the worst, the very worst. Because of a death-turned-life 2,000 years ago and the Love that started redeeming things the very second they broke. The very second. Love was eager…

  • Christian Living,  God,  Jesus Christ,  Kingdom,  Legalism

    Fellow Wanderer

    Psst, you there, with the heavy pack and slow step, come in close for just a sec. I’m no stranger, my footprints are right over there on this same path – still deep (my pack was heavy, too). I’ve been where you are now and I just had to come back with a few refreshments – I know this part gets wearisome. It gets long here and your feet are sore and you feel a little… done? Yeah, I know… I felt done, too. You have secrets. Secrets that the rest of us would find disgusting. You would tell them in mutters and we would recoil in horror at your…

  • Beauty,  God,  Jesus Christ,  Kingdom,  Politics

    When The World is Falling Apart

    The sky is falling. The world is broken and breaking and it can be hard to remember that it is being restored and redeemed. Headlines boast good news for a prowling lion, roaring and devouring. We feel like prey confined in a cage of fallen earth. It is hard to feel safe. It is hard to look at our children without thinking about the mothers who no longer can. It is hard to feel distant when blood is crying from the ground all over – when global news thrusts us all together into one confused mass of humans asking why. This is not the way we are supposed to live.…