Leaves of Healing

Before the sun slipped down on the Sabbath, Mary might have pressed aloe leaves and squeezed their gum into a dish, mixing it with myrrh and water. Carrying it to a buried Jesus at dawn must have felt like a last, little fragrant offering. But when she saw the sunrise streaming into an open tomb, … Continue reading Leaves of Healing

A Taste of the Feast & A Prayer for Hutchmoot

I made a list of foods over the weekend (and made myself hungry doing it): Cucumbers and crackers and cheeses and grapes and tea and butter for scones. If I couldn’t remember something, I tried to imagine Bilbo’s pantry and the Dwarves’ feast as they ravaged it. After all, Hutchmoot is a place for eating … Continue reading A Taste of the Feast & A Prayer for Hutchmoot

Part Three: Belonging in a Kingdom

When Jesus says, “Stay dressed for action and keep your lamps burning” in Luke 12:35, I get two images from Tolkien’s The Return of the King. The first is of Minas Tirith— a stone fortress towering against the enemy realm of Mordor. I see Pippin the hobbit bumping between soldiers who are rushing to find … Continue reading Part Three: Belonging in a Kingdom

King of This Tuesday in November

November 8 I’m writing this at 7:30 on Tuesday morning. The polls have only been open for an hour, and I can’t try to guess what things will look like by the time you read this on Sunday. But I do know Sunday’s sun will rise on a new leader— elected or reelected. And Sunday’s … Continue reading King of This Tuesday in November

“It Will Not Be So in the Mended Wood”

June 7 “Adam had no idea one bite could cause all of this.” Jackie Hill Perry’s latest Instagram photos have exposed the violence, hatred, fire, and war ravaging America right now. Her caption stung me. Violence and hatred and fire and war wouldn’t be ravaging us if Adam hadn’t stooped to join Eve in her … Continue reading “It Will Not Be So in the Mended Wood”

On Gardening and Belonging

May 3 I want to be a gardener—to know my botanical names, to identify seeds, to plant them so they grow the best possible fruit. Someday, I want to be that little old lady who wears sunhats and keeps seeds in her sweater pockets. But I’m a beginner. If gardening is an art (which I … Continue reading On Gardening and Belonging

Part Two: Why Do You Pray These Three Words?

March 15 The world is bleeding, your sin makes you groan, you’re restless for the Day when Jesus renews all things. Maybe “Your kingdom come” is a prayer you’ve adopted. I mentioned last week that I’ve been thinking more about the kingdom and praying for it to come soon. But my study of Psalm 119 … Continue reading Part Two: Why Do You Pray These Three Words?

Part One: Do You Pray These Three Words?

March 8 The older I get, the more I think about the coming kingdom. Maybe it’s because my sin is uglier. Maybe it’s because my suffering stings. Maybe it’s because I’m more in love with Jesus and the thought of endless days with him captivates me. I think about Christ’s kingdom, yes. But do I … Continue reading Part One: Do You Pray These Three Words?