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Around Our Small Table

The last two weeks of 2016 were full of family, snuggles, long days in pajamas and so many treats. So many treats.   I love the hibernation mode that we fall into as a family during the holidays. We play more. We stay up later. We sleep in later (thank you, Jesus).  We linger longer...

In the Habit of Hospitality

I am allergic to goals and averse to resolutions. I love to dream, but I prefer my dreams in rosy shades of vague. Details and action plans make me tired. Oh, January. Oh, month of optimism and ambition. I love you. But I do not trust you. * Or, perhaps, I do not trust myself....

Merry Christmas

God asks us to give away everything of ourselves. The gift of greatest efficacy and power that we can offer God and creation is not our skills, gifts, abilities and possessions...In the end, when all other human gifts have met their inevitable limitation, it is the recollected one, the bold virgin with  a heart in love...

Community across Divides

I sat down at the long table with my paper plate in hand. I glanced around the unadorned room and did a quick head count of the college students I’d brought with me across the U.S.-Mexico border earlier that morning. I was program assistant for a course on immigration, and we’d come south for the...

Around Our Small Table

The last two weeks of 2016 were full of family, snuggles, long days in pajamas and so many treats. So many treats.   I love the hibernation mode that we fall into as a family during the holidays. We play more. We stay up later. We sleep in later (thank you, Jesus).  We linger longer over dinner.  One night -- I'm not sure which, because don't they all blend together...

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One Thing You Need to Know Before You Name a New Year

“Hey, mom. So, I still have to look through some stuff but my passport wasn't where I thought it was. I was wondering if you, by any chance, saw it when you were here.” I receive my daughter’s message at 10:34pm on December 23, less than 24 hours before she is scheduled to board a flight in Raleigh, North Carolina. A flight that will carry her to London to be...

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In the Habit of Hospitality

I am allergic to goals and averse to resolutions. I love to dream, but I prefer my dreams in rosy shades of vague. Details and action plans make me tired. Oh, January. Oh, month of optimism and ambition. I love you. But I do not trust you. * Or, perhaps, I do not trust myself. For though I am no setter of goals, I, too, long to turn over that...

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Practical Hospitality In The New Year

This morning in church during the sermon my pastor talked briefly about the news continuing to come out of Aleppo. He talked about the terrible videos and shocking goodbyes some of the people under attack were sharing via social media in their last hours. It broke my heart, and it made me feel helpless to do anything that could change the situation. ***  The other day I had a conversation with...

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Merry Christmas

God asks us to give away everything of ourselves. The gift of greatest efficacy and power that we can offer God and creation is not our skills, gifts, abilities and possessions...In the end, when all other human gifts have met their inevitable limitation, it is the recollected one, the bold virgin with  a heart in love with God who makes a sanctuary of her life, who delivers Christ, who then delivers us...What...

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On Apples, Trees and the Light of the World

Tonight I’m turning off the lights and letting the low light of the candle flicker over Bing Crosby’s voice. For hundreds of years, people have been lighting candles for one reason or another. For comfort. For light. For hope. For prayer. To show someone which way to go. To find the way themselves. Tonight I’m keeping them lit because they remind me that darkness cannot extinguish light. No matter how...

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A Feast of Peppermint Jo-Jo’s: On the Couch with Jesus

Last Christmas our son was a fresh three months old, fitting neatly into six month onesies and footie pajamas with smiling husky puppies on the feet. The weather was unnaturally warm for December but we lived in the caution of RSV and ordinary colds—things that can land our little one in the hospital—so I don’t remember much of the outdoors. I think the leaves fell, wet with the December rains,...

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Community across Divides

I sat down at the long table with my paper plate in hand. I glanced around the unadorned room and did a quick head count of the college students I’d brought with me across the U.S.-Mexico border earlier that morning. I was program assistant for a course on immigration, and we’d come south for the day to learn from Mexican organizations engaging the issue and to walk along the border...

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Hospitality Is Heart Space: Take It on the Road

I always thought of hospitality as gathering around our cozy table for a meal and bright friendship or opening our home wide and breezy for all of the coming and going through the sweet bang of a screen door. But I’ve been thinking for awhile now about what hospitality looks like beyond the walls of my home. What happens when we take it on the road? If hospitality is about...

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Advent: Waiting, Listening, and Hearing

wait (verb): to look forward to eagerly “Advent: the time to listen for footsteps – you can’t hear footsteps when you’re running yourself.” Bill McKibben "I am hunkering down right now. I don't know where I am. This year has been hard. I have not lived this year as I wanted to; I have had to live this year as I needed to with all that has been going on." A...

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