Blameless

“Is everything okay?” my voice quivered as I watched the ultrasound tech repeatedly zoom-in and zoom-out, measuring and re-measuring my baby’s developing body. It was taking longer than normal. “The doctor will examine your results and come in to speak with you,” the tech replied.   Over an hour later, I sat on a metal…

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Ezers

I could not believe what I was hearing! The women I was talking with were telling me what many pastors in Eastern Europe teach from their pulpits.  They said, “It is not uncommon for Christian women to be subjected to domestic violence because of church teachings!” What? These were trusted friends who had traveled throughout Asia,…

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What Number Are You?

Growing up as the youngest of 11 children was a novelty.  In gatherings when we were introduced to our parents friends they would ask “what number are you?”  At first I was proud to tell them I was #11, the “caboose.”  The first and last seemed special, the beginning and the end.  All nine children…

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In Between The Milestones

It’s not often that as a year begins, I can already name the major milestones the coming months will hold. This spring, I will be moving so my landlords can sell their property. Not too long after that, I’ll transition from course work in my graduate degree to writing my graduate thesis. My boyfriend and…

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The Essentials

To pay attention, this is our endless and proper work. – Mary Oliver A few evenings before Christmas I moseyed into my daughter’s bedroom where my husband had set up camp, ferociously wrapping the stocking stuffers he’d purchased from the dollar store. I’d finished most of my preparations for the holidays, and the kids were…

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Awakening

I am a sucker for lofty promises which is why, in the early days of the new year, I find myself signing up for a cleanse. A cleanse promises to rewire cravings. As you detox, your body is stripped of its addictions and your mind recalibrates. No, you don’t need that nightly glass of wine.Yes,…

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Anam Cara

“Never let the fire in your heart go out. Keep it alive.” Romans 12:11 The entrance into the new year has surprisingly been held in the embrace of anam ċara. “Anam ċara means soul friend,” John O’Donohue writes. “The anam ċara was a person to whom you could reveal the hidden intimacies of your life.…

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Listening

A curious rhythmic beat worked its way into my half sleep. It was barely dawn and as I listened, even before I opened my eyes, I heard first the chorus of birdsong that is the ritual of the Northwest Spring. I had taught myself how to tune into each voice of this holy choir, raising…

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The Romance of Friendship

Long before I knew romance with a boyfriend, I learned how to love, and love intensely, from my friend Ashley. “You are my SPNQ (SPOH-neek),” we would say to each other. It was code for “I love you,” invented some silly night at a girls’ retreat when we were maybe 15, 16 years old. It…

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Nourish

Whistling and gusting wind in the oak trees outside my bedroom window woke me this morning. I tried to stay in bed, but something about the wind felt beckoning to my soul. I came downstairs and opened the blinds, the tree tops ferociously swaying, bending back and forth as the wind had its way with…

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