• Just Life

    And | June 2020.

    I’m sure everyone else is just as amazed as I am that we are half-way through this year. Never in our wildest dreams could we have imagined how this first half of 2020 might play out. I’m not even gonna guess about how the next six months might go. I’ve written before about AND being the perfect word for surviving a pandemic. and I think it’s also the perfect word for embracing the kind of action required to address systemic racism. By its very nature, it’s additive. it invites abundance. it welcomes new ideas and other opinions. fundamentally, it MAKES ROOM. Honestly, my actions this month seem lame by last…

  • Just Life

    And | May 2020.

    Last week, Sara and I resumed our Sunday morning check-in’s (7amET/noon for her). and now it’s light enough that Marc takes his walk while I talk and that means I get to run to the lake (and back) by myself after I talk to Sara. In Time Before, Marc played golf on Sundays (most days) and church commitments usually meant solo walks/runs for me. Now, seeing the lake early on a Sunday morning, a not-so-easy-as-it-used-to-be mile and a half from home … is Sabbath Time for me. I carry my phone only to take this photo. The rhythm of the run, feeling my feet hitting the pavement, and my attempts…

  • Just Life

    And | April 2020.

    Around here, the magnolia trees are full of buds … the sky is a brilliant blue, with just a scattering of pure white clouds, and the sun is warm. Around here, the number of confirmed cases in our county is edging closer to 3,000 and the number of deaths just passed 100. Around here there is the beautiful renewal of spring and the promise of summer, and the ever-present shadow of a virus that threatens lives and livelihoods, and kills. We are living in a state of paradox. A few weeks back, I saw this graphic on Instagram and it resonated with me (credit) Who knew that AND would become…

  • Just Life

    And | March 2020.

    I just finished reading a few of the OLW updates y’all shared today. This past month hasn’t been what any of us anticipated. And yet. We’re opening our minds and hearts in new, often uncomfortable ways. And we ARE doing it. And most importantly, we ARE showing up for ourselves and each other with kindness, honesty, generosity, and love. A few of us seem to be more comfortable showing these feelings to others than to ourselves … if that speaks to you, please consider this post your permission slip to … take care of YOU. It’s like the opposite of that video we’ve all seen about the value of social…

  • Just Life

    And | February 2020.

    Checking in with my OLW today … and reflecting on the special place that February holds in this journey. the holiday high has fully worn off. the decorations are packed away. maybe they aren’t. we have wonderful memories from the recent months. maybe we don’t. the bills come in. we have fun plans for spring break. maybe we don’t. the primary season is heating up. girl scout cookies arrive. it rains. it snows. it rains. it rains. the sun comes out. it rains. it’s cold. it rains. and still. a friend’s mom falls and breaks her hip. a vulnerable senior’s son gets injured. a dear friend is hospitalized (for the…

  • Just Life

    And | January 2020.

    Holly and I took our first walk outside the neighborhood cul-de-sac this morning. Pink-tipped trees don’t seem like January. and yet. We were both wearing our “heavy coats” because it was freezing (literally, 32 degrees). and I didn’t plan a photo like this to open a first reflection on this year’s One Little Word. and yet. I had time with my journal a few hours before our walk: “I am not at all sure what I want to say. maybe just a little about how I am paying attention to the ANDs. thinking/noticing my own choice of words. which is impacting how I think. holding paradox. being uncomfortable.” Truly, I…

  • Just Life

    Welcome 2020 | And.

    Hello friends. Two weeks into this new year and I am finally ready to share my One Little Word. I’m going to continue exploring the “both/and” thinking that Richard Rohr introduced me to last year, first in his interview with Krista Tippett and then with his books Falling Upward and Everything Belongs. For 2020, my OLW is And. I’m still amazed at all I learned with Hope last year. I really had no idea where that word would take me and I traveled some truly marvelous – and helpful – paths. I trust this year will bring more of that same wonder and discovery, along with (sadly) more discomfort, discord…

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    Hope | December 2019.

    Many of y’all are sharing your 2020 words today, but I’m not quite ready to move on. A few weeks back I mentioned the 10 Things to Tell You podcast and the episode about reflecting back on 2019. In the show notes, Laura says “There are 10 questions in this episode meant to make you reflect upon on the last twelve months and get some clarity for what you want in the coming year. The prompts are a mix of light and deep, some to document a simple moment in time, others to help you grow.” As I’ve been sitting with those questions and journaling responses, many of the things…

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    Hope | November 2019.

    I’ve been thinking about Advent this week. Advent starts this Sunday (the dates of Advent change year to year, because it always starts the 4th Sunday before Christmas) and I am delighted it actually starts on December 1 (next year it will start in November). It marks the beginning of the church year and welcomes a season of waiting and anticipation leading up to Christmas. In many churches, we light candles each week, representing and recalling Hope, Peace, Joy and Love. At our church, different ministries are invited to light the candles each week, and as part of our Prayer Shawl Ministry, I will be lighting the first candle on…

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    Hope | October 2019.

    The most meaningful part of my Hope journey this past month has been the series of sermons our pastors have preached on Hope. I’m honestly not sure they intended to have a Series, but I’ve seen it that way. On October 6, the lectionary passage was Lamentations 3:24 ” ‘The Lord is my portion,’ says my soul, ‘therefore I will hope in him’.” Apparently, this is the only passage of hope in that whole book. That Sunday was World Communion Sunday and the message closed with these hopeful words: Every time we gather to worship, every time we come to the table together, we are claiming and proclaiming hope. We…