“This day is called the feast of Saint Crispin,” So said Shakespeare’s Henry V in his inspirational speech to his troops at Agincourt on this day in 1415.

Henry’s troops were outnumbered five to one. After the English victory, Henry proclaimed death to anyone who would take the glory from God for the day.

Today is the feast of Saint Crispin–October 25, that is. And it is a day to note historical events at Agincourt and beyond. Continue Reading…

Finding New Neighbors

October 21, 2016 — Leave a comment

Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law. Romans 13:8.

In one week, Jameson will knock on my door for trick or treat. Jameson is my new next door neighbor. Well, he and his parents. Jameson is two years old, and his new house is aglow with orange lights in anticipation of a sweet day.

And there’s another neighbor I just met, Mary Jo. Mary Jo and I have lived within a block of each other for decades, but we’d never met before. She was working in her yard one day when I walked past with my houseguest. My son is deploying soon and has left his dog, Boomer, in our care.

Boomer is helping me connect with neighbors I’ve lived near for a very long time and with those who just moved in. Continue Reading…

 Then the king will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father. Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 

“For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me.’

“Then the righteous will answer him and say, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? When did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? When did we see you ill or in prison, and visit you?’ 

“And the king will say to them in reply, ‘Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me.’” Matthew 25:34:40.

Some people find God in nature. Rather, they find fellowship with God in nature. That works for my husband. He can go out on the trail, away from all the distractions of other people, work, and techno-gadgets. He reads scripture, prays, and communes with God.

I often find fellowship with God without going outside.  I find it through scripture, prayer, music, or a word from a friend–even in a memory of a word or deed from long ago.

I know a man whose family suffered a tragedy nearly three decades ago. He explains that he faced a situation he couldn’t fix. Someone else worshiped God by simply sitting with him, saying nothing, and listening when he was ready to talk. Continue Reading…

A few weeks ago, I pointed out that the Cubs could win the World Series for the first time in 108 years and that the presidential election had gotten crazy.

The Cubs are still in the chase. And the election is even crazier.

In Utah, a gentleman (You get to use that term so seldom today) named Evan McMullin is polling at 22 percent with both Clinton and Trump tied at 26. I didn’t know he existed two days ago–even after a pollster called to ask who I would vote for. Yesterday, I found out that, in that one state, he is at least close to the margin of error. Continue Reading…

“For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will rise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father’s house will perish. And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” Esther 4:14.

Times looked dark for Esther and her people. She had become queen, but all Jews were marked to die. And she was a Jew.

Our days seem dark too. In America, Christians’ freedom to speak truth is under attack. In other places, Christians are marked to die as Esther and her people were. And many die for their faith.

“For such a time as this” is a phrase that’s been repeating itself in my heart and mind. Why are we here? And why now? It’s a question that perhaps a Nazi’s brother also once asked himself. Continue Reading…

It was a long drive that began in the evening. My parents put us in the car in the hopes that we would go to sleep. Our long awaited trip to Florida had begun. At the time, Disneyworld was still a dream in Walt’s head.

Mom and Dad had saved up for the trip. They were always doing that. We would later go to the New York World’s Fair, Chicago for my oldest brother’s graduation from navy training, and Holland, Michigan, for my other brother’s band trip. But this trip would be our last big one with all five of us.

My oldest brother was sixteen, my other brother, ten. I was six. It was the vacation before the oldest left, but after the youngest had grown old enough to remember.

About twenty minutes out we had to turn around. Mother had forgotten her Catalina swimsuit. It was white with a tiny red logo of a woman mid-dive. It was the suit Miss America contestants wore. It had been an investment. Continue Reading…

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven. Ecc 3

A time to be born, and a time to die;

One of my grandsons was born on a Monday. That Wednesday, my father died. Next month we plan to celebrate 100 years since Dad’s birth and all that our lives are because we knew him.

Each of us has our time to make a difference in the lives of others.

a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted.

Spring is the season of new life and planting; fall is the harvest. I have cherries in my freezer, the harvest from summer, waiting to become jam or pie filling. Warm food for cold days.

A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up. Continue Reading…

“God’s ways are at times like heavy wagon tracks that cut deep into our souls, yet all of them are merciful.”
Charles Haddon Spurgeon, Grace God’s Unmerited Favor*

Sometimes life takes an unexpected turn. Something bad happens. And the landscape of our story changes completely. We have a new perspective, a new direction. A bad thing works for good that we did not foresee.

I have a friend who worked in an ice cream truck when he was 17 years old. That seems like a job that would have few challenges. But one day, he was robbed and beaten. The event changed the trajectory of his life.

He became a career prosecutor. He devotes his life’s work to pursuing justice for those who are robbed, beaten, cheated, or worse.

A neighbor’s grandchild was born with serious handicaps. He and his parents faced challenges most of us cannot imagine. But two of his aunts found inspiration and, because of him, became therapists.

A former student’s younger sibling was born with a genetic disorder. This student is in medical school studying to become a geneticist. She may change the life trajectory of others who suffer from similar conditions.


We Christians love to quote Romans 8:28–“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”

But we sometimes neglect the following verse: “For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren.”

We are creations still in the shaping process–being conformed to the image of Christ.

Most of us can look back and clearly see our turning points. We can realize now that we found a life path because life changed one day. Unexpected. Unpredictable. Even unpleasant and painful.

But never, ever without purpose.

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In 2004, the Boston Red Sox broke the curse of 86 consecutive years without winning the World Series and George W. Bush won reelection.

The Friday after Election Day, I was a guest co-host on a local political television show. A caller suggested that since the Redskins had won their football game the previous Sunday, a recount would show that John Kerry had actually prevailed.

I replied that it didn’t matter what the Redskins had done. The Red Sox had won the Series. We now occupied a parallel universe.

The next year, the Chicago White Sox won the World Series ending their curse, also of 86 years.

That leaves Chicago’s Cubs with the last curse of baseball. And it’s been a whopper–making Cubbie fans wait 108 years since their last championship. Continue Reading…

“Man does not exist to serve the economy, but the economy exists to serve man” (49). Rod Dreher

It’s the stuff of sci-fi movies. The Matrix, Soylent Green, and Coma all depict people as resources–energy, food, or replaceable body parts.

In 1979, the sci-fi film Parts: The Clonus Horror depicted young people cloned from the rich and famous. The clones served as spare body parts to give their “parents” immortality.

Many today have concluded that humans are the result of chemicals actions and reactions. There’s nothing more to us. Therefore, there are no moral parameters, no absolute rules. And that view is coming into clearer focus around the world as a market grows for human body parts. Continue Reading…