Can Coffee Make You Feel Closer to God?

It can happen beneath a starry sky, during a prayer of sincere thanks, upon hearing laughter spill from a tiny child, and almost always while watching the sun rise over the ocean:  heaven draws near.  I’ve been noticing the “thin places” all my life without having a name for them. While reading one of Shauna […]

Chasing Heaven

  When I was a child, The Little House by Virginia Lee Burton, was my favorite book.  In it, a country cottage endures trials (urban sprawl), only to be transported, in the end, to her former life in the paradise of the countryside. The problem with my girlhood love of this book is that it […]

Be Gentle on Yourself

“ ‘Martha, Martha,’ the Lord answered, ‘you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed.  Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.’ ”  Luke 10: 41-42 Six months ago, my aunt sent me this beautiful collage card she made.  Inside she wrote, […]

Corduroy on Love

I Corinthians 13 is the famous “love chapter” of the Bible. Its poetry defines love in exquisite detail. I think Mark 10 deserves a similar designation: the “Jesus Loves Me” chapter. In it, right after we watch Jesus drawing the little children close and blessing them, we get to gaze at a person through Jesus’s […]

In the Beginning . . .

“In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” Genesis 1:1 My five-year-old has been memorizing this verse this month, so it is written on the chalkboard near the breakfast table.  This morning, as the rain gently hit the windowpanes, I read this verse with new eyes.  Of course!  That is why I have […]

Daily Bread

“Give us this day our daily bread.”  Matthew 6:11 To a tiny town, snug within the Bible belt, I drove to meet my friend beneath a funeral tent.  Her younger sister, who had been sick since we were little, had gone home to heaven.  When I reached the town, raindrops greeted me, thumping upon my […]

Because of My Weaknesses

My husband is fond of saying, “We don’t do what we know we need to do to be happy.”  I know I need to live gratefully.  This week I didn’t.  I know I need to keep up with the laundry.  This week I didn’t.  I know I need to read books, plan meals, spend time […]

“Many Waters Cannot Quench Love”

“Many waters cannot quench love . . . .”  —Song of Solomon 8:7 (NKJV) * “Valentine’s Day at the Laundromat,” my aunt’s folksong hums from the CD player, and though I’m not literally in a laundromat on this day of love, the dryer is rumbling in the background.  I started a load of laundry after […]

Jesus at the Grocery Store + More “Pennies”

“Speak to one another with psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs.  Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”  Ephesians 5:19-20 I’d like to put the world on pause today.  Keep my three-year-old cuddly in his footy […]

I Am Thankful for . . . Friends Who Show Me How to Pray

“Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”       I Thessalonians 5:16-18 On days like this one, I am apt to say, “What a beautiful day!”  Sometimes, I say it out of immense gratitude to God.  Lots of times I say it with an […]