Darkness and a Mound of Ashes

FullSizeRender (2)I hesitated to write this.  Seeing it on the page only makes it more real.  I hesitated to post it even more, as the act of putting this out for public consumption feels sinfully self-indulgent.  I wrote it, then put it away, then pecked at it again, then let it sit for a couple of weeks to see if I still felt that this was full of the brutal honesty I intended to be.  In the end, I guess my purpose is this:  Down the road, I want my girls to understand that my problem isn’t their fault.  I also want them to know that it is always OK to reach out for help.  I want them to know that if they are struggling, they need not suffer alone.  Insisting on bearing burdens alone isn’t self sufficiency; loneliness is only the state of listening to your own unwise counsel.  And for you, dear reader, know this:  Don’t hesitate to find the help you need.  After spending the past several weeks inventorying the last 40 years of my life, I wish I had reached out much earlier. Continue reading “Darkness and a Mound of Ashes”

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Hearing Requires True Listening

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“Be still, and know that I am God…” Psalm 46:10

How many times have I prayed aloud and ended the time spent with God as soon as I said, “Amen?” How is it that I have gone my whole life and never simply sat and waited for the answers? Like Elijah, I might have to endure storms, fires and earthquakes. But, if I wait long enough for the silence, maybe I can hear the voice of God again. Continue reading “Hearing Requires True Listening”

Weeds

imageI especially love to pull up crabgrass; there is something about that particularly pernicious weed that reminds me of sin. It starts as an innocuous looking sprout with just a couple of tender green leaves. If it is left to feed on just a little bit of water and sunlight, it creeps outward, snaking about the good plants in a way that is just barely perceptible. Before long, the crabgrass smothers all that was beautiful in a tangled green mess of dense, thick and ropey vegetation. When crabgrass reaches this stage, only the most radical solution remains available: Hacking up the whole garden and pitching out the good plants with the bad. Continue reading “Weeds”

Baseball Lessons: It’s Never Over

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Great seats, and a very special day with my girls.

Baseball is like life:  It isn’t over until it’s over.  No matter how dark the prospects, it isn’t over until our breath leaves us. There is always time for redemption, an unexpected blessing, forgiveness or to just say “I love you.”

Continue reading “Baseball Lessons: It’s Never Over”

Confirming Promises Daily

Alex ConfirmedYou are remaking a promise:  The promise is not that you will be perfect, but that you will be alert and receptive to God’s grace.  It is a promise that you made today in church, but really you must renew that commitment every time you get out of bed on every morning for the rest of your life.  You are seeking nothing less than the face of God.  He is there, waiting for you to discover Him in unlikely and amazing places. Continue reading “Confirming Promises Daily”

Accepting Unacceptable

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If I can’t be home, at least there is coffee

Time owns us, in a sense.  It is the one resource that we cannot make more of.  In some ways, I think I am more sensitive to time’s passage than many others; my experiences with loss and my professional life have made me keenly aware of the perishability of both time and our own lives.  So, I am jealous that time dictates the time I have with you.  I wish I could partition off a piece of spacetime, and in doing so reserve a place of impassibility where we could spend our special moments in one another’s company. Continue reading “Accepting Unacceptable”

On Forgiveness

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“The Life Line” by Winslow Homer

In neglecting to forgive myself, I am refusing to enjoy the gift of the day which God has given me, regarding it instead as a gift not worthy of my time and thankfulness.  Rather, I am making the easier choice to wallow in a far more imperfect world of my own creation, all for the fear of letting go of what He himself has rightfully released me from.   Continue reading “On Forgiveness”