The Casserole Rules

Unless you air your laundry, divorce in the church is as isolating as a child’s temper tantrum during the Sunday morning service. When my husband of 27 years suddenly and unexpectedly left, it was weeks before my large-church-pastors noticed I was missing from Sunday morning services.  And even weeks more before someone called to check…

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Recycling, Shame and Ambivalence.

When I dropped our recyclable container at the end of the street, I noticed that our address had been worn off. I then drove down our red trash container and took a marker to mark our address in bold numbers on the blue recyclable lid. Monday, when I picked up our empty container, I noticed…

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War and Peace In My Body

I stared at the number on the scale, then stepped off quickly so it would disappear before my husband made his way into the room. How could I have let it get this bad?  I began to run the numbers in my head, each one a new accusation. I was scarily close to my self-defined…

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Shaped by Love

“You know I absolutely adore you.” His words return to me vivid and tender. An evergreen glistened with tiny white lights as raindrops pelted the brick landing of the retreat center before I boarded the airport shuttle. I picture the wild hair and dancing eyes of the kind man holding my face in his hands…

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Not What We’ve Done

We were sitting at a table along the wall in a crowded restaurant, menus in hand, diving right into the nitty gritty of our personal stories. I had known of this woman from church for a while but this was our first time getting together. The longer I sat with Kate, who is a handful…

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Nothing to Prove

On date night last weekend, Chris and I went to see the new Captain Marvel movie. I was feeling rather ambivalent after reading several reviews focusing on the movie’s feminist agenda. One in particular caused a visceral reaction internally, as I took in words that had the appearance of honor, but to me felt patronizing…

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Holy Desire

I headed across campus and stepped into the student chapel. Spring was erupting, and doors were clumsily propped open to welcome in the breeze. I was on my way to the community outreach office where I led a team of fellow students. I had grabbed my mail on the way and saw an acceptance note…

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Confusion

A child’s mind is a mystery to me. It captures every experience and locks it in as the basis to build truth, to define normal, to create expectations. Is this still true when the normal is twisted with tainted experiences? This question spotlights my reality.  I liken it to the time my husband went to…

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Belly Dance

“Ewww, Mom, that’s disgusting,” he said as he glimpsed a sliver of the wrinkly, stretched skin of my stomach. The moment had started sweetly. Miracle of miracles, the kids were ready to go to school early which of course, never happens. So my two youngest boys and I were enjoying a few minutes of snuggling…

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Undamaged Goods

It was 2008 when Katy Perry launched her hit song, “I Kissed a Girl [and I liked it].” I worked in a conservative ministry at the time and watched as “church-people” gasped and shook their heads as if the world had reached a new depth of wickedness.

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