Three Ways to Find God in Winter

I happen to like a midwestern winter: cold, barren, dark, and windy. I enjoy bundling up and walking on winter days, with or without snow. The introvert in me looks forward to spending those dark evenings with books, knitting projects, writing projects, cooking, and pots of tea. Something in me connects to the sacred in winter—because I believe that each season is sacred in its own way. But I know that many people struggle to […]

Listening for God in People

Do you ever have a moment when God speaks clearly to you through another person? I had one of those moments recently during lunch with friends. As is often the case, our conversation wove in and out of parenting woes and joys, to our children, to what was going on in our faith lives, to our hopes and our struggles, to what was going on in the world. My friend, Kelly, asked me at some […]

Finding Space for Play and Wonder

In Plato’s dialogue Theaetetus, Socrates says, “All philosophy begins in wonder” (155d). I recently thought of this in the midst of a discussion of Jesus’ idea that one must be a child to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven (Matthew 18:3). Children love to ask “why” questions. Why are there clouds in the sky? Why do birds sing? Why do all the flowers not bloom at the same time? Some questioning is about a desire […]

Listening for God in Nature

My love of nature began when I was a young child nurtured through the witness of my parents’ respect and awe of creation in our own backyard. Avid gardeners, they spent their free time designing and creating beautiful gardens, flowerbeds, and sanctuary nature nooks in our backyard that magnified the natural beauty of the Louisiana landscape. Their craft of cultivating the soil brought the magnificence of creation close up to my eyes as a child. […]

Inner Vision

There is a marvelous bonus waiting for those who entrust themselves to God in intimate prayer. Just as you bring all your everyday concerns to God in prayer, and talk to him about how you really feel (which may well include expressing your anger and frustration with him from time to time), so, steadily, he will open up more and more of himself to you—or rather, he will increasingly open up your own inner vision, […]

Six Ways to Let Children Lead Us in Finding God

As adults, we’re quite accomplished at making things complicated. Prayer, for example. Or, finding God in all things. We can turn a simple concept of paying attention into a theological puzzle, can’t we? Fortunately, God designed humans to start out small and grow up gradually. So the world is never populated only by adults. We have children to balance our adult-ness, which is a great blessing. Do you want to find God in all things […]

Finding God in the Birds

Growing up in Inner City Los Angeles, I hadn’t really seen a bird that wasn’t a pigeon unless I went to the beach. You know what they call pigeons in East L.A.? Flying rats. The only other experience I had with birds was the Alfred Hitchcock movie by the same name. One of the local networks would show the film on television each year around Halloween. So yes, I was never what you might call […]

Angels and Ice Cream

One day a father and his six small children troop single file into the thrift store. The tops of the little ones’ heads are staggered at four-inch intervals of height, like stair steps. At first, we clerks exchange glances, doubting whether one lone man is sufficient to keep twelve little hands off the breakables, but we needn’t have worried. The children follow along behind him to the back of the store and wait patiently while […]

Accepting the Memories

Last week I meditated on how God has been present in every moment of my life. In order to do this, I took out an old photo album that my mom had given me after I finished high school and left home. I consider myself blessed that Mom put together this album of photos beginning with my birth and continuing through high-school graduation. Mom’s efforts fill about 15 pages of the album, and my entries […]

God in the Mess

In my early 20s, I had my life all planned out. I pictured living with my husband and three very well-behaved children who played the cello on an acreage out East within a short commute from work, school, and church. My best friend assured me that she would take my kids once in while to go play in the mud, because she knew I would never be able to handle that sort of mess. I […]

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