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Out of the Mouths

  • when life leaves you with more questions than answers

    On Thursday, September 06 th, 2012

    Only a few more weeks left now. That is what the Farmer says at dinner, what he says as we clatter dishes off the table, the enamel plates all stacking and clapping for the cook. Only a few more weeks left and August will dip the beans fields bronze and the leaves will reluctantly fall off the beanstalks and just the pods will then dangle, the only rattling ornaments hanging of...

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  • When You’re Broken & Don’t Know Where to Go:

    On Thursday, August 30 th, 2012

    When she was standing there in the spring, under the blaze of the blooming trees, I could remember 13. I could remember the burn of the unfurl, and how the becoming sears, and how does a mother help a daughter light? How does a woman be a light? We had walked down to the water’s edge. The sky smothered like a grey blanket and I could feel her struggling flail, al...

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  • The 1 Reason Why You have to Slow Down

    On Monday, March 19 th, 2012

    We hear them far off in the woods, just as the sun sinks further down. And I stop. Because who doesn’t stop when the world slips up behind and surprises you? So we stand there and listen long and neither one of us can stop smiling and I almost forget to breathe. The frogs have returned, the frogs and their song.  Why does the trilling in the throat of a frog do thi...

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  • What to Sing in Your Storms

    On Tuesday, June 21 st, 2011

    ‘If God really works in everything — then why don’t we thank Him for everything?” She asks me this straight out. My daughter, Hope, and I, we sit in the truck on the field’s hem, waiting to give the Farmer his lunch. The Farmer’s planting bean seeds into earth’s dark bed. The sky’s rising darker in the west. He races rain. “For every drop of rain ...

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  • when it all feels a bit like a mismatched mess

    On Monday, May 09 th, 2011

    It was at the end of it all that I held it, how the smallest of gifts can most enlarge a heart. On Mother’s Day, I’m the mother walking out of chapel with the son who is wearing shoes. It’s just shoes that don’t happen to match — one brown and one green. And the son smirks and I’m the messed up mother hanging onto a singular thread of unbreakable grace. ...

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  • What if more than celebrating Easter- we lived it?

    On Wednesday, April 27 th, 2011

    When dead bodies walk, who can not talk? When the Farmer reads Scripture aloud, what he does for us at the close of every meal, turning the thin pages of the Gospel of Mark right after Easter — I hear the whisper of wild hope. He reads Scripture and the words make me see it — what had happened, after Christ arose. The eyes widening white in black tomb emptiness, t...

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  • The Way a Mother Can Make Peace with Time

    On Wednesday, February 16 th, 2011

    He’s out in the deep vast white, a hooded smudge of color trudging through the deep. I watch from the window, watch the golden lab spring behind him, ahead of him, beside. Malakai turns sharp to the north, tromping out into the field’s markerless sea of white. His hood turns to see: is Boaz following? Then a sharp turn to the west, and a glance to see if the dog is trac...

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  • when life leaves you with more questions than answers

    On Friday, August 06 th, 2010

    Only a few more weeks left now. That is what the Farmer says at dinner, what he says as we clatter dishes off the table, the enamel plates all stacking and clapping for the cook. Only a few more weeks left and August will dip the beans fields bronze and the leaves will reluctantly fall off the beanstalks and just the pods will then dangle, the only rattling ornaments hanging o...

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  • How A Child Shows the Way to Do Hard Things

    On Monday, May 03 rd, 2010

    I drive backroads clear round a Great Lake, from the Ontario farm, around Lake Huron, to that jut of Michigan Thumb pointing skywards saying everything’s all rightward. Late at night I’m welcomed by good farmers with good souls. And on the first day of May, the magnolia trees all in bloom, the petals flying generously in winds off that water, I stand in Michigan...

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  • How the Kids & the Neighbor-Next-Door Might Really Become Christians?

    On Wednesday, April 28 th, 2010

    I‘m brushing my teeth, flecks of white spraying the sunny mirror, confetti celebrating new morning, when she crawls up on the toilet, leans into the mirror to find my reflection and ask me straight up, “How do you become a Christian?” I’m Crest-foaming. Which is slightly less than conducive for a theological treatise. I rinse, wash the pearly whites cl...

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  • let the children be thankful

    On Monday, March 08 th, 2010

    ‘From the lips of children and infants you have ordained praise… (Psalm 8.2) We share the table and the space but they are the teachers forthis Mamahas much to learn. And whenover the hillsI hear joya comin’the simple becomesdivine. (As Ann’s travelling, it’s a joy for our little family, with our our little daily gratitude journals, to join ...

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  • Discovering the One Thing You May Have Long Forgotten About You

    On Friday, February 05 th, 2010

    When it’s time, I know, I can tell in my bones, the ways the knees ache, those joints with a clock of their own, and I drag my fingers through the hair, back from the temples, and I survey the room of the sprawled out legs, the stacks of books, the balls of yarn, the half deck of Rook scattered, and I smile and chime the hour quiet. “I think it’s time for bed, folks.” T...

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