Posts tagged "Friendship"

The Table Of Suffering

She lost her baby that fall. It was early in the pregnancy, but there had already been celebrations and joy at the positive test. Then there was blood and aching and sorrows that sliced them open. Our baby came two months later, the little girl we were planning to adopt. And it was too early. Way too early. I sat in a NICU holding her impossibly small hand and praying...

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The Power of a Friend Who Helps You Find Rest

I recently finished studying the book of Ruth with some women from my church.  We talked about all of those beautiful themes of salvation woven throughout Ruth. But as I studied these two lines from Naomi struck me: But Naomi said to her two daughters-in-law, “Go, return each of you to her mother's house. May the LORD deal kindly with you, as you have dealt with the dead and with...

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How to Be a Safe Place for Single People

I was going to write an essay for June about singleness. In my head its title was “What I would tell my single self,” a list of advice and anecdotes, thoughts on friendship, living a good life, staying present and doing the next thing. I asked a question on my Facebook page in preparation for writing this essay: “Single friends, what’s the most annoying/offensive thing married [people] say to you?” ...

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Always a Baker, Never a Bride

I’ve named 2017 ‘the year of weddings.’ I’m told that everyone has seasons like this, but it’s a first for me. Over the span of six weeks, four of the most influential women in my life are getting married, each in a different state from New England across to Southern California. I’m maid of honor, cake baker, chalice bearer, and candy maker. But as a single woman who has never...

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The Crooked Path Towards Faith

In December 2006, I jumped into the River Cherwell, a river in Oxford, England, that crosses University Parks on the north side of town. It was the end of our study abroad semester and a few friends and I had the wild idea to jump off a low bridge into the water on one of our last days of class. We were twenty years old and had survived a semester...

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Sunlight, Shadows, and a Supper Club

When I was younger, I was sure that loneliness was both inevitable and temporary. It was simply the price one paid for moving to a faraway city or taking a new job or joining a different church. Loneliness was a straightforward ailment easily cured in time. Now that I am older, I understand loneliness not as a sickness but a shadow. The sun shines brightly here in the land of...

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Women Who Gather At The Table

It's funny these days, how people you've never met in person can become dear friends through spaces like Voxer and Facebook. Instagram breeds in us, a familiarity for others because we've seen their bedroom, or their children at play, their closet, or their front door. As weird as it is, it's also the world we live in. This is how many of us find community. Six years ago, I met a woman...

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Someone On Your Side

It was a winter of my soul, that season. The kind where you look like yourself on the outside, but your inside is hollow. Obsidian. Though I had never understood depression – I typically sidled obnoxious with a perpetual silver linings perspective – I was sad, marrow deep. Tormented, really, by circumstances beyond my control. Not a life and death thing or infidelity or financial ruin; and, thankfully, it had...

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How to Feed Each Other’s Hunger

In our twenties, my husband and I thought nothing of using garden furniture for indoor dining. The wrought iron chair with the crooked seat cushion scraped against the pine floor as my neighbor pulled it up beside the table and sat down. Theresa eased her pregnant body into the world’s most uncomfortable chair with a sigh, while I puttered in the kitchen, preparing our make-shift meal. My daughter kept Theresa...

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Grief, Gratitude, and Turkey Stuffing

Thanksgiving was the first holiday we celebrated after moving to this old red-brick farmhouse in southeastern Pennsylvania. Tomorrow, we will celebrate our fifth Thanksgiving in this place. Is it any wonder I am looking back? Every year, we have roasted a turkey bought from a local Lancaster County farmer. I no longer attempt complicated new recipes because these turkeys are so flavorful. There are many reasons to take good care...

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