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The Year of Koinonia

  • How to Live the Really Best Bucket List

    On Tuesday, August 28 th, 2012

    When I’d picked up the magazine lying on the seat next me, the pages fell open to this editor’s column — about his bucket list. “We all have a bucket list – whether it is written down or tucked somewhere in the back of our mind just waiting for the right moment to transition over to ink on paper.” I finger the corner of the glossy page. Ra...

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  • When You’ve Been Waiting for an Answer …. and Life seems Silent

    On Wednesday, August 22 nd, 2012

    When Malakai’s afraid, he chews on his bottom lip like his grandmother. And there’s no getting around it: He looks like a caged coon up there in the pew before the piano — biting at his lip, hands fidgeting. He’s eight. How can I really tell him — that catastrophizing is how we make our own soul-cages. That fear’s always the flee ahead. That...

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  • The Easy Plan Before Summer Ends . . . . . . {14 Things to do in the last 2 weeks}

    On Friday, August 17 th, 2012

    Two weeks left. Two weeks of sweet corn and swimming suits and bare toes and zinnia bouquets and light like this in their hair and all the days are adding up to make years And before the sun even comes up, the clock ticking so loud in my ears, there’s this rolling over toward the Farmer, this desperate murmur, Only two more weeks left of summer —- what...

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  • The 1 Thing You Have Got to Know… When You are Looking for Answers

    On Monday, July 30 th, 2012

    The day our 6th child is born, a straight line wind rips through and tears trees in the woods straight out of the ground. We name the baby born in a storm, we name her Shalom. Her name means peace in Hebrew. We name her Shalom and she is born the day a storm mangles all our countryside, tears the roofs off a half a dozen barns, and Shalom means wholeness – and what if she ne...

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  • When You Need an Answer to Prayers

    On Friday, July 20 th, 2012

    A s she swings higher at twilight, there is only quietness. Only all these quiet prayers with the sun on the nape. And the prayers, they are doing something, and it can be felt in the bones. Prayer isn’t merely talking to God — it is being transformed by God. Prayer is this moving towards God, heat of a holy fire, and feeling the dross burn away, burning away tha...

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  • when you are feeling overwhelmed…

    On Friday, June 15 th, 2012

    When a sparrow gets caught behind the couch, it’s the light at the other end, behind the poor thing, that we keep trying to turn that one pounding heart towards. Because the thing is and don’t I know it: If you’re turned the wrong way, you can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. So I’m kneeled on the floor in front of a pounding-heart bird a...

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  • When You Feel like You Don’t Belong?

    On Wednesday, June 13 th, 2012

    Someone has to be that Mother. That mother who drives a full 3 hours to the border with a packed mini-van and anxious kids and creeps through a 20 minute traffic backup under the hot, beating sun, only to rifle through her wallet and look up feebly to tell the custom’s officer she doesn’t have birth certificates for 2 of her children. So that would be me. “...

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  • Why You Really May Need to be Done with Safe: Being a Dangerous Disciple of the Unsafe God

    On Thursday, June 07 th, 2012

    My Gran, she’s taking slow walks outside the hospital now. Her heart’s growing stronger, beating certain. I wash down the cupboards in the kitchen. I pray for Gran’s heart attack recovery, for each step she keeps taking, ninety-one and frail-boned and Irish-determined. Life’s a risk and maybe she’s stronger than I am, accepting each heart beat, ea...

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  • When You Feel like Your Life’s a Mess …. The Real Truth About Your Dirt

    On Thursday, May 17 th, 2012

    When he walks through the kitchen with his hair showered clean but his face looking like that, I just have to laugh. “What?” he says. “Really, I showered, Mom, I did.” Levi stands indignant, hands on hip, and I nod half serious. “You showered?” “Yes, Mom! It’s only my clothes that are dirty.” He’s been picking stones ...

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  • The Purpose of Pain: When Life Hurts

    On Tuesday, May 15 th, 2012

    She stood under all that blue sky and watched the windmill spin round and was it the all the world turning that she could feel? How it spun and hurt and unfurled. Dandelions unfolded at her feet — suns, risings everywhere. The rooster turned. Laundry slapped on the line. Something in her, the hurting places, stirred awake right there. That’s what she could ...

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  • When You Feel like Everyone is Bigger, Better, Smarter… { or ‘How to be a Star’}

    On Thursday, May 03 rd, 2012

    When the fog meandered in lost on a spring evening in May, she hung her apron up in the back mudroom. She wandered down the back lane too. Down in the woods, she could hear them, the frogs singing, an invisible symphony. She knotted the one side of her skirt up to step over a pothole. She tried to make her way. In a world of reaching, how do you rest? In a culture of numbers h...

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  • When You Want a Great Life Plan

    On Thursday, April 26 th, 2012

    The day after Resurrection Sunday, day after the world stopped because God had risen up and walked out of the earth — his father came and sat at the table, and we hadn’t seen him in four months. We served the last of the lamb and the first of that spinach. And the Farmer sat at the table with his dad and they sit at the table and talk dirt and wheat and land and hor...

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