Our shovels thumped into the compacted dirt below us. My husband and I took turns as our tools danced their part. Scoop. Dump. Repeat.
With six trees left to plant, we raced against the fading sun, & more importantly the mosquitos buzzing around our necks. We grabbed the maple sapling and lowered it into the hole. As I scattered dirt around its base, I couldn’t help but think of its future. Someday it’s branches would stretch above our home. Would we be there to see it?
Once upon a time in a faraway land there was a grand kingdom. Its walls reached up and out to the vast countryside. The inhabitants of its villages soaked in the warmth of the sun that lit every stone around them. Their king was good, and his loyal subjects couldn’t stroll the streets without greeting another with, “Long live the king.”
Yes, long live the king. Live he did, and his rule increased. But reader, there was something sinister creeping nearby this kingdom, as it usually does. You see, the light that fell upon the stones of the king’s land did not continue far past the city walls. Instead it was swallowed up into a thick fog of black. For in the background of the majestic kingdom stood a solemn old forest. If it was only empty, that might have been bearable. But instead, it was very much filled. Haunting its grounds were the dreaded grillkens.
“When have I made you laugh?” My husband’s question hung between us. I smiled and quickly rummaged through ten years worth of experiences. I could imagine myself: doubled over from laughing, often at late hours in the night. I could feel the ache in my cheeks from smiling too much. I felt confident in the joy we’ve had through the years, but the isolated reasons wouldn’t come. What was it we were laughing about?
A handful of instances resurfaced but the rest remained irretrievable. Even though they were forgotten, their existence left their mark.
Motherhood is a gift and a joy. It’s a truth many of us took time to celebrate, reflect, and publicly proclaim this past Sunday. Though not a church holiday by any means, Mother’s Day does give an opportunity to acknowledge the beauty and importance of the role God created.
Yet it wasn’t hard to see the many cries for nuance in approaching this particular day. I scrolled through my social media feeds and saw women mourning their lost children, the babies they never had, or their own mothers who had passed away. These women didn’t want their realities forgotten.
This plea for more careful meaning and application is not confined to Mother’s Day. Nuance is a term that seems to be frequently thrown around lately. Perhaps this is due to the nature of our shorthanded communication, or maybe it’s the drive for inclusion that seems to be sweeping through our culture.
In reaction, I’ve seen some Christians dismiss the idea of nuance by labeling it primarily as a sign of weakness or a way to hide the truth. Yet I don’t think this is the right move either. Instead, I believe Scripture shows nuance is a skill to use wisely, and it’s one we should all desire to cultivate.
My daughter learned about haikus in school, and I decided to have some fun on my own.
The beginning of Easter week is only a few days away. But as we get our Resurrection eggs ready and fill our fridges with crescent roll tubes to make empty tombs, perhaps you might prepare for Holy Week by thinking about another famous week. This week occurred long ago, in fact it was the very first one. Those simple seven days of creation that fill our children’s books and nurseries are what lead us to celebrate this Easter Sunday as the eighth day of creation. Have you heard of the eighth day?
In a personal update, here is a short video of the backpacking trip my husband and I took last August. It was incredibly beautiful, and we are so grateful we were able to do it.
A few weeks ago, I decided to leave Twitter. It’s a decision I’ve wavered between for many months. While I was encouraged by much on the site, I grew tired of the fresh dose of controversies. I don’t think I’m strong for leaving, but in reality weak. Others can handle the medium and should keep doing it, in my opinion.
However, as I went back and forth between my decision I discovered a problem of social media that we don’t often talk about. I didn’t have trouble leaving Twitter because of my own addictions or a love of controversy. Instead, part of me just couldn’t bear to sever the relationships there.
This last year has brought a lot of discussion about virtual and physical community. As the pandemic forced us into Zoom meetings and on-line church it seems like the loudest voices tell us these are all cheap smokescreens for true relationships. Embodied relationships need bodies, right? Teens and adults who flock to their social media friends experience a deficient relationship. Maybe, but maybe not exactly.
It’s been a little while since I’ve posted on here, so this will be more of a short blog/personal update. Earlier this month I celebrated my thirty-third birthday (I think? Who can keep track anymore?!) The day ended with homemade gifts from the kids, and all of us devouring the above-pictured cake. Recipe here, and let me say, the four boxes of chocolate it required were worth it…
As it’s nearing the end of the year, I’m going to throw my hat into the ring of end-of-year book lists (Find my 2019 post here). While last year I followed Tim Challie’s Reading Challenge, this year I decided to pick titles on my own. Last year I was really excited...
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