Posts tagged "love for others"

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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Praying For My Spouse and a Helpful Resource

It was a beautiful day when we buried her. The sky was blue. The sun was shining and there were a few wispy, white clouds floating in the air. But it was hot under that blue sky. When people find out that I have buried a child they often say, “that must be the most difficult thing ever” or something like that. But I usually tell them something like, “yes,...

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Setting the Table

My mother-in-law knows how to set a table. She’s a connector, a people person, a well of bubbling, intentional hospitality. She’s also a planner. Days in advance I can tell that company is coming, or a special dinner is in the cards, because her table will start to come together. A special set of dishes will appear from a box in the attic. She’ll play with table cloths and runners,...

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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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Bring A Different Way-Reflections on loving Others During Advent

The other day while a friend and I sat discussing a complicated social issue, she turned to me and said something along the lines of wishing there were a book that would simply outline for her, how to handle the issue specifically--preferably with a bullet-point list of action points. I quickly shot down her fantasy with my own admission that I'd once hoped for the same thing, but after reading several...

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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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On Sacrifice and Greater Love

I knew the conversation was not going well when she crossed her arms and leaned back in the chair, but I was not prepared for how far off the rails the train was going to go. She asked questions trying to poke holes in my every word and I answered each one with as much honesty as the moment would allow. How do you answer with stark honesty when the...

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What Forgiveness Tastes Like

Family gatherings around life events are often joyous, emotional occasions. Wedding preparations take the cake when it comes to lots of Big Feelings. Mix the mother of the groom, the father of the bride, siblings, relatives—shirt-tail or otherwise—and there is sure to be no shortage of rough edges on the Big Day. Everyone involved has an investment in the couples’ happiness. Or at least an opinion,(“They paid HOW much for...

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Pancakes, a Plate, and a Pair of Strangers

“These look good,” I texted my sister, and I sent along a link to Bobby Flay’s recipe for Chocolate Chip-Pistachio Pancakes with Salted Caramel Syrup (total time 55 minutes, level: intermediate.) I knew I wouldn’t make time to make them, but I knew she would the next time I came home. And she did, because she loves to cook and loves to experiment on our family. But, sorry Bobby, they just...

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Hospitality and the Secret Power of Weakness

When we told his older brothers that our baby had been born with Down syndrome, we explained that Ace would be more flexible than any one else in our family. Flexibility is the flip side of low muscle tone, you see. His ability to fall into the splits or fold himself in half in order to skooch under a table is remarkable. Ace is fifteen months old and is the...

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