Seven

seven: an experimental mutiny against excess, reading, cute coffee mug, jen hatmaker book,

Last week I read Seven: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess by Jen Hatmaker, and thinking about this book is taking up the better part of my brain.  The book is the storytelling of her efforts to do a fast of sorts for seven months, from seven different things. One month she eats seven foods. One month she wears seven articles of clothing. One month she gives seven things away every day. One month she adopts seven new earth-friendly habits.  You get the idea. I have resisted reading this book because I sort of had a feeling that it was going … Continue reading

The Good Life

italy, travel, tuscany, farm table, the good life

The Good Life. What images do those words bring to your mind? For me, I picture my camp chair in a mountain valley, a campfire circle, warm mittens and a thermos of coffee. Or maybe it would be sitting in the warm sunshine around a farm table in Italy, covered with ceramic flasks of wine and platters of cheese and bread. I also imagine a bright blue chair on the deck of a cruise ship or a beach lounger in the sand, an umbrella drink, a sun hat and a book.   So last Saturday morning, when I gathered with … Continue reading

sinners welcome

I’m home from church with a sick little girl, so I’m rereading this collection of poems in lieu of corporate worship this morning.  Not the same, I know, but there is no avoiding sickness in this town right now.  Class attendance is down everywhere due to multiple strains of the flu and other viruses. I read Mary Karr’s searing memoir, The Liar’s Club, a few years back.  Her story broke my heart, as it did millions of others.  I remember the red and black covered book flying off of shelves when I worked at Border’s Books in Chicago.  So long … Continue reading

looking

I finished this book by Nancy Ortberg yesterday.  Another Christmas gift from another sweet friend.  I was trying to savor it, because each vignette was worthy of contemplation, but I ended up gulping down the remaining chapters yesterday morning.  I have said before that I love to read stories of people finding faith, and this book is definitely one of those, but it is really more.  It is a memoir of seeing God’s grace while serving in ministry, which is encouraging for me from where I sit several years (not in age, but more in experience) behind Nancy.  It is … Continue reading

you probably forgot i even like yoga

I haven’t mentioned yoga in a while.  Let’s just say that my yoga practice sort of lapsed over the summer, as in was completely reduced to about a down dog a week, and only that when my back was killing me from carrying the oft mentioned ridiculously heavy baby backpack for longer than was reasonable.  (Reasonable is about 20 minutes.  or less.)  Towards the end of the summer I saw this darling yoga book, and I thought…now, that would have been a good idea. So, I have been easing back in.  It is so funny to me how something once … Continue reading

finding our way

I finished a book this morning that I have been slowly reading since just before I left home. It’s called Finding Our Way Again. Isn’t that a great title? It’s about restoring to our lives some of the ancient traditions of faith that have given both sanity and sacredness to so many who have gone before us. The best bit is that the entire book is an introduction to a coming series which will write about each one of these traditions individually. And the really best bit is that Phyllis Tickle is the editor of the entire series, which for … Continue reading

remember

i realized today as i was sitting by the lake that most days i am wearing three different scripture references right next to my skin. i went down to the lake to catch my breath and just enjoy a moment of quiet between the events of the day. i was holding my necklace and meditating on the scripture it represents and my mind wandered to this idea of actually carrying scripture around all the time to remind me of the truths i so desperately need to refer. then it sort of just came to me that i had three represented … Continue reading

who is great

in the moments of clarity between the clouds of sickness, i have been thinking a lot about what it means to be great. this has been a conversation on my heart for a while now. last weekend, a friend and i spent a late night talking about how we celebrate people’s failures because it makes us feel better about ourselves…because we have this idea that there can only be a few who are great. and then we studied matthew 18 in bsf this week, where the disciples ask jesus what it takes to be the greatest. working through those questions … Continue reading

Ash Wednesday

tulip shoots, ash wednesday, lent, spring

Today is Ash Wednesday. I love this day. I love it in a  I really want to unearth every possible spiritual blessing from this significant day kind of way. Which means I love it, but I don’t necessarily rejoice in it. For me, Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of a season that will end with all kinds of growth and bursting and spring-ing: plants from the ground, songs from my heart, life from the grave. Lent reminds me to look forward to Easter. And to spring, which comes early here in the deep south, as the unseasonal but not unheard … Continue reading

hiding place

starting monday morning (and therefore my week) with yoga is one of the most sane choices i make in my schedule. and this morning, jeanne did not disappoint. she worked us hard, but again, you don’t realize how hard you are working. you’re just following…moving, holding, listening, moving, holding again, and on and on. then before i know it, i am drenched in sweat and falling heavily into the earth. i knew this morning that i was going to have trouble focusing. i woke up feeling sort of exposed. for many reasons, some that make sense and some that are … Continue reading