Fast from Complaining, Feast on Appreciation

Ash Wednesday has come and gone, the first Sunday of Lent was yesterday, and I still haven't decided what to give up or add for Lent this year. One year I gave up listening to the car radio, and learned to appreciate the silence as I drove. Another year I added a jigsaw puzzle, although … Continue reading Fast from Complaining, Feast on Appreciation

A Poem for Holy Week

"Good Friday" by Christina Rossetti speaks to me this Holy Week. Written in 1862 and now in the public domain, this poem is a devotional, self-reflective piece. "Am I a stone?" she asks--and I think of the heart of stone turned hard by compassion fatigue and so unmoved by suffering. "Am I a sheep," I … Continue reading A Poem for Holy Week

Lent Gives Way to Easter

Thank you, dear readers, for following my journey with Christ Is for Us, from the initial invitation extended by Abingdon Press, to cover reveal, to publication, and following through with this Lenten season. And now may the Almighty and Merciful God raise you up, may the Risen Christ console and inspire you, may the Ever-present Spirit empower you … Continue reading Lent Gives Way to Easter

Journeying with Jesus Through Holy Week

Yesterday we celebrated Palm Sunday as we do every year, with the children waving branches and everyone in the congregation singing, "Hosanna!" It's a way of re-telling Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem that's recorded in all four gospels. As the gospel of Mark puts it: When they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their … Continue reading Journeying with Jesus Through Holy Week

Lenten Reflections of a Weary Mother

One of the books at the top of my to-read list is Catherine McNiel's Long Days of Small Things: Motherhood as a Spiritual Discipline, published by NavPress and officially launching this week. As part of Catherine's launch team, I had a sneak peak at her first chapter, and can hardly wait for her book to arrive … Continue reading Lenten Reflections of a Weary Mother

Christ at the Heart

I love the cover of my most recently published book, Christ Is for Us: A Lenten Study Based on the Revised Common Lectionary. The dusty blue background seems appropriately subdued for Lent without being overly solemn. And the word, “Christ,” stands as a visual focal point just as Christ is at the heart of this … Continue reading Christ at the Heart

How to Prepare for a Spiritually Enriching Lent

"How do you prepare for Lent?" The question took me by surprise. After all, I've always thought of Lent as a time of preparation for Easter, so hmmm, what might it mean to prepare for preparing? For 2017, Lent begins officially with Ash Wednesday on March 1, then lasts until the Lord's Supper on Holy … Continue reading How to Prepare for a Spiritually Enriching Lent

Why I Love to Celebrate Lent with Christmas Carols and Udon Noodle Soup

One Lent, when my mom was in the hospital and I was spending significant time with her there, I took a break for a late lunch by myself at a nearby Japanese restaurant. While I waited for my bowl of udon noodle soup—my ultimate comfort food--I idly watched people walking by on the street, and … Continue reading Why I Love to Celebrate Lent with Christmas Carols and Udon Noodle Soup