The Wood Stove (Need Draws Us)

Our need for warmth draws us and keeps us together, sprawled where the seating is too limited for six, the noise levels too much.  The dog, also, is there, taking up more than her fair share of the love seat. In the corner, the wood stove ticks as the cast iron...

Honey Bees in Advent

Each bee senses that her one obligation is to give the smallest motion of her flight muscles to the collective work of keeping the queen and the colony’s honey stores warm.  The whole hive knows they survive only if they shiver together.  Some of them in the...

Mistaken Identity, Poetry and a Secret

Twenty years ago, Naomi Shihab Nye’s poetry collection, Red Suitcase, came across the check-in desk at the library where I worked.  Captivated by the cover, the title, I flipped through, checked the book out, and wrote down two poems I’ve carried in my head...

The Year of Failure

“I’m tempted to declare 2017, The Year of Failure.”  This is what I messaged to a friend minutes after opening a long-awaited email informing me I was no longer in the running for a coveted job.  My emotions were high; melodrama rose with ease. Looking back...

The Kingdom of Heaven is Like a Tree

What is the kingdom of God like? And to what should I compare it?  It is like a mustard seed that someone took and sowed in the garden; it grew and became a tree, and the birds of the air made nests in its branches. Luke 13:18-19   A...
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