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Month: October, 2016

First Things First; or, Why I Drink Coffee in the Morning

by Mike McKinniss

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Anytime” by Shereen M used under license CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

The day doesn’t begin without coffee. Maybe it does for other people. I’ve heard rumors about such a race of men, though I imagine they must live in a land far from here—Mars, perhaps.

Morning coffee is no mere conveyance for caffeine, mind you. Sure, the miracle drug graciously plays its role, but it’s more than that. It’s the warm mug in your cupped palms, assuring you the world is a safe place. It’s the steam whispering up like a siren song, beckoning you, not toward rocky shoals, but toward a calm haven. It’s the aroma of your childhood home. It’s the deep rich color calling you toward the depth of character you desire. It’s the subtle intermingling of sweetness and bitterness—a complexity with which you identify.

For these reasons, and a thousand others, the day does not begin without coffee. Read the rest of this entry »

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Be Anxious For Nothing

by Rob Dunne

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Please pray for2_by Long Thlen_flickr-com_25993749282_2e4418c094_CC BY-ND 2.0

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7

Things were not getting off to a very good start. Blood starting draining towards my head as the chair was tilted further and further back. The thumping in my chest increased when the syringe penetrated my gums. It is a curious thing to watch a dentist work. How is it that the needle seems to go that deeply in to your gums? Once it is in your gums, how are they able to move the needle around so much without removing it from your gums first? Read the rest of this entry »

Sweet Comfort

by Dawn Aldrich

He will take great pleasure in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing. Zephaniah 3:17 NIV

A medley of hymns from my childhood rings clearly in my heart when I close my eyes and listen. They were completely separate tunes until my mother gathered me in her arms and strung them together as one. It’s impossible to count how often she sang over me, but this I know: it comforted me.

Decades later, I gathered my own children in my arms and rocked away the nights in darkened rooms gently whispering that same strung-together-medley: “Jesus loves me this I know…Oh how he loves you and me…Jesus, Jesus, Jesus. There’s just something about that name…On a hill far away, stood and old rugged cross…Draw me nearer, nearer blessed Lord.” Every time I sang over them in love. Every time, it comforted them.

I miss those lingering moments of new sleep when I studied their sleeping little faces, inhaled their clean baby hair and thanked God for the precious gifts they were. Read the rest of this entry »

Holy Knees

by Dawn Aldrich

day-14_365-by-megapixx_flicr-com_5747041178_5d7d312d94_CC BY-ND 2.0

Day-14_365-by-megapixx_flicr-com_5747041178_5d7d312d94_CC BY-ND 2.0

“I prayed for this child, and the LORD has granted me what I asked of him. So now I give him to the LORD.”
1 Samuel 1:27-28

I crawled on my knees, for what seemed like forever, after my babies were born. As soon as they stayed awake longer than a feeding, I was on the floor cooing and playing alongside them. When they gained mobility I crawled after them, baby-proofing the house and picking up the debris they left behind.

Before kids, a pair of jeans lasted me a few years. Post kids, holes appeared in the  knees within a year. I reserved one pair of “good jeans” to wear in public so they wouldn’t show any wear around the knees.

Children grew into adolescents and I often missed those days of holy-kneed jeans. I didn’t miss the physical exhaustion as much as the uncomplicated simplicity of those peanut butter and jelly vs. bologna and cheese type of days. It was stepping back as they made their own decisions – good and bad – when I wished for simpler days. Read the rest of this entry »

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