Beyond Useless

My mother took care of people for most of her life—a blind father, orphan children in a South Indian mission school, children of her own, aging parents-in-law, generations of students, foster children, homebound church members, my father in his final … Continue reading

“Hear me.”

I found all three speeches given on the first night of the Democratic National Convention—Michelle Obama’s, Elizabeth Warren’s, and Bernie Sanders’—moving, consoling and reinvigorating. For Sanders and Warren, both of whom dwell further left in the liberal territories than Hillary, … Continue reading

UPON

Today’s lectionary reading included one of my favorite phrases: “For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace.” The slightly antique preposition, “upon” offers its own particular vision of abundance. Where “grace after grace” might be a more … Continue reading

EAT

A word that’s come into new focus over the past few days is EAT. I was invited to speak at a Seventh Day Adventist college, visit a few classes and share several meals with them. They are a denomination that … Continue reading

DISCERN

DISCERN is a word that keeps coming up lately in new contexts. It precedes deciding. It’s a patient, prayerful, humble process of separating out or teasing apart the various strands of a problem or situation in order to determine an … Continue reading

GIVEN

Today I’m thinking about the word GIVEN—accepting what is given, being grateful for what is given, recognizing the given as gift. Wendell Berry chose this word as the title of one of his recent collections of poems which focus on … Continue reading