Honest to God

By |2019-06-26T12:20:36+00:00July 3rd, 2019|

My three-year-old grandson’s day was off to a rotten start. He couldn’t find his favorite shirt. The shoes he wanted to wear were too hot. He fussed and fumed at his grandmother and then sat down to cry. “Why are you so upset?” I asked. We talked for a while and after he calmed down, I gently inquired, “Have you been good for Grandma?” He looked thoughtfully at his shoes and responded, “No, I was bad. I’m sorry...”

In Our Weakness

By |2019-06-17T15:29:14+00:00June 19th, 2019|

Although Anne Sheafe Miller died in 1999 at the age of 90, she nearly passed away in 1942 after developing septicemia following a miscarriage and all treatments proved to be unsuccessful. When a patient at the same hospital mentioned his connection to a scientist who’d been working on a new wonder drug, Anne’s doctor pressed the government to release a tiny amount for Anne...

Objects in Mirror

By |2019-06-12T14:21:30+00:00June 1st, 2019|

“Must. Go. Faster.” That’s what Dr. Ian Malcolm, played by Jeff Goldblum, says in an iconic scene from the 1993 movie Jurassic Park as he and two other characters flee in a Jeep from a rampaging tyrannosaurus. When the driver looks in the rearview mirror, he sees the raging reptile’s jaw—right above the words: “OBJECTS IN MIRROR MAY BE CLOSER THAN THEY APPEAR...”

Divine Escape

By |2019-05-15T11:38:45+00:00May 20th, 2019|

Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot mystery The Clocks features antagonists who commit a series of murders. Although their initial plot targeted a single victim, they began taking more lives in order to cover up the original crime. When confronted by Poirot, a conspirator confessed, “It was only supposed to be the one murder.” Like the schemers in the story, the religious authorities formed a conspiracy of their own.

The Crooked Steeple

By |2019-05-15T11:18:41+00:00May 19th, 2019|

Turns out that crooked church steeples make people nervous. When we visited some friends, they shared how, after a fierce windstorm, their church’s proud steeple was crooked, causing some alarm. Of course, the church quickly repaired the flagging spire, but the humorous image got me thinking. Often church is seen as a place where everything is expected to look perfect; it’s not seen as a place where we can show up crooked...

A Kind Critique

By |2019-05-03T12:13:48+00:00May 14th, 2019|

During a landscape painting class, the teacher, a highly experienced professional artist, assessed my first assignment. He stood silently in front of my painting, one hand cupping his chin. Here we go, I thought. He’s going to say it’s terrible. But he didn’t. He said he liked the color scheme and the feeling of openness. Then he mentioned that the trees in the distance could be lightened...

Walking in the Light

By |2018-12-31T11:15:11+00:00January 4th, 2019|

Darkness descended on our forest village when the moon disappeared. Lightning slashed the skies, followed by a rainstorm and crackling thunder. Awake and afraid, as a child I imagined all kinds of grisly monsters about to pounce on me! By daybreak, however, the sounds vanished, the sun rose, and calm returned as birds jubilated in the sunshine...

Good Riddance Day

By |2018-12-19T15:40:39+00:00December 28th, 2018|

Since 2006 a group of people have celebrated an unusual event around the New Year. It’s called Good Riddance Day. Based on a Latin American tradition, individuals write down unpleasant, embarrassing memories and bad issues from the past year and throw them into an industrial-strength shredder. Or some take a sledgehammer to their good riddance item...

Putting Up Hay

By |2018-11-23T14:11:30+00:00November 27th, 2018|

When I was in college, I worked a summer on a ranch in Colorado. One evening, tired and hungry after a long day of mowing hay, I drove the tractor into the yard. Acting like the hot shot I thought I was, I cranked the steering wheel hard left, stamped on the left brake, and spun the tractor around. The sickle was down and swept the legs out from under a 500-gallon gasoline tank standing nearby...

My Real Face

By |2018-10-10T16:05:27+00:00October 21st, 2018|

For years, feelings of unworthiness and shame over my less-than-godly past had an adverse impact on every aspect of my life. What if others discovered the extent of my blemished reputation? Though God helped me muster up courage to invite a ministry leader to lunch, I strived to seem perfect. I scrubbed my house spotless, whipped up a three-course meal, and donned my best jeans and blouse...