About sixteen and a half years ago, my Grandma Campbell died. I was in the midst of a long and difficult search for my “first call.” I had been interviewed by nearly a dozen churches and religious agencies. Some went well. Others were dismal. None of them was working out. Altogether they had worn my soul thin.Read More
All Saints’ Eve . . . I spent the last few days at the American Academy of Religion . . . and came home in time for Halloween Trick-or-Treat. Driving home this afternoon I thought of the many friends old and young who have been lost to me. So many of them will be remembered this year on the first All Saints’ Day following their deaths.Read More
A Peach is Worth a Thousand Words. Summer time is here with a blazing fury. Temperatures up. Windows rolled down. Rolling along with blues on the radio. Somehow that low steady beat underneath and all kinds of fun and mischief floating across the top of it suits me just fine this morning.Read More
Switchfoot. Standing here on the brink of Holy Week, I’m glad to be headed in to hear the music of Switchfoot in a live concert in Cincinnati, Ohio at The Underground. Since early November when Switchfoot released their newest album, Hello Hurricane, I’ve been playing it almost daily.Read More
Standing in the den two nights ago my husband rubbed his hands through his hair, looked at me and said, “Have I come undone?” I said, “Well, I’m sure you have. Listen to this. . . .” I opened a book and read something I’d found earlier that very day. Stumbled across it really. “Let’s face it. We’re undone by each other. And if we’re not, we’re missing something. If this seems so clearly the case with grief, it is only because it was already the case with desire. One does not always stay intact. It may be that one wants to, or does, but it may also be that despite one’s best efforts, one is undone, in the face of the other” (Judith Butler, Undoing Gender, 2004, 19).Read More
shining sun and skies azure
praying in time with my own beating heart
the smell of my daughter’s hair
remembering the rhythms of work
soup for dinner
pumping weights and running three miles
listening to the lament of crows
(opening notes. . . of a requiem . . . for grief)
Lenten Lament on Grief
Yesterday was the first day since Lent began that I did anything I’d call productive for work. Why? Well grief keeps kicking my backside. And all my other sides, for that matter. I’m attending to it. I’m not rushing to get back to things. But it keeps spurting out in surprising and unsettling ways. So I’d like to write an honest lament about grief’s effects on me.
My father-in-law John has a saying: “How you practice is how you play.”
How can we live generously?
When I landed in Charlotte, NC, yesterday the first email message I read on my phone said that Howard Cockrum had died. I was struck immediately by two deeply felt responses: grief and gratitude. In life we’re sometimes lucky enough to have friends who are truly worth knowing, people who manage to love us with no strings attached, faithful ones who bless us with gifts, love and generosity, people who become family and who share without holding back.