My Piece of the Elephant


Living Our Days

Long ago and far away there were six men, wise indeed, but, alas, they were all without sight.  An opinionated lot, every one, in the course of their wanderings, they happened to meet an elephant, standing squarely in the center of their path.

Feeling duty-bound to report on his discovery, the first wise man gripped one of the massive beast’s sharp tusks and declared, “It is stunning how much an elephant resembles a spear.”

The second wise man, equally confident, reached out until his hands connected with one large and floppy ear.  “Nay,” he retorted, “you are mistaken, for ‘tis clear to me that elephantine nature is like that of a fan.  Already I feel the cooling of air around me as this fine elephant sweeps back and forth.”

The third wise man could no longer hold his peace, for he had meandered off to the rear and found the…

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Sending Grace Downstream


Living Our Days

Dining on cubes of watermelon and calling it breakfast, the youngest son stands pajama-clad at the counter, his toothpick a dowser for the juiciest chunks.  In just a few end-of-summer days from now he will be up to his fetlocks in geometry, and I will be preserving the summer sweetness of our red tomatoes with one eye on the clock and the other eye (fierce!) on the boy’s screen time allotment.  We will approach breakfast with business-like efficiency, thinking about food groups and family devotions and the day’s agenda.

But today, summer is still in full sway and grace is on the menu — along with the watermelon.  In the busy days that lie ahead, is there a way to keep on living juicy, to hang onto the full brightness of summer solstice even though the planet keeps tilting us into shadow?  Brushing crumbs from the dining room table, I…

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The Spiritual Practice of Curiosity


Living Our Days

Part of the delight of spending time with my tiny grandson is that he takes nothing for granted.
Nothing.
“Bam, why bubble pop?”
“Because you stood on it.”
“Why?”
Well, good question.  Why indeed, but our conversations routinely run on in this vein of relentless curiosity.  They move forward not because “Bam” comes up with anything like satisfactory answers, but because the two-year-old mind has jumped the rails to a new topic.

Historically, the church has an uneasy relationship with curiosity, beginning with the Son of God Himself receiving flack throughout His earthly ministry from the anti-questioning party in power at that time.  Casey Tygrett invites Jesus’ present-day followers back into the spiritual practice of Becoming Curious, beckoning readers into the tension that holds opposing concepts in a space that waits for answers from all the multitude of possibilities.

Risk and Tension

Jesus, the “whole and beautiful,” jumped into the…

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“Laundry Is My Overflowing Inbox”: Working within the Home


Living Our Days

Stuffing a ratty t-shirt into the washer’s maw, I try not to think about the fact that it was only yesterday that I hung this very same t-shirt on the clothesline.  The laundry is never done — even though we are down to a family of four these days.  How in the world did I survive eleven years of cloth diapers?  Apparently, somewhere along the way I have discovered that there is Glory in the Ordinary, that there is meaning to all the mundane tasks that are stuck on replay in this mothering life.  So when Courtney Reissig compared her laundry hamper to her husband’s overflowing inbox at work, I stopped and underlined, and nodded, “yes and amen.”

My soul resonated, too,  when she argued that in our ordinary chores and in the act of corralling chaos into order, we image God.

“You and I were created to work because…

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Today in HisStory August 2


Today in HisStory

In the Second Punic War, during the Battle of Cannae, the Carthaginian army led by Hannibal defeated numerically superior Roman army. (216 BC)

King William II of England was killed by an arrow shot by Sir Walter Tyrell while hunting in the New Forest. (1100)

James Abbes was martyred by being burned at the stake during Queen Mary of Tudor’s reign. (1555)

Henry Hudson entered what would later be called Hudson Bay for the first time. (1610)

US Revolutionary War:  US Declaration of Independence was formally signed by 56 people. (1776)

US Revolutionary War:  George Washington created an honorary badge of distinction. (1782)

In the first US Census, the population was 3,939,214 including 697,624 slaves. (1790)

Napoleon was declared Consul for Life. (1802)

First parachute jump in US took place. (1819)

In the Battle of Bad Axe, Wisconsin, 1,300 Illinois militia defeated Sauk and Fox Native Americans ending the Black…

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Book Review + Author Interview — Healing Love by Jennifer Slattery


By The Book

A news anchor intern has it all planned out, and love isn’t on the agenda.

Brooke Endress is on the cusp of her lifelong dream when her younger sister persuades her to chaperone a mission trip to El Salvador. Packing enough hand sanitizer and bug spray to single-handedly wipe out malaria, she embarks on what she hopes will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

But Brooke is blindsided by the desperation for hope and love she sees in the orphans’ eyes. And no less by the connection she feels with her handsome translator. As newfound passion blooms, Brooke wrestles with its implications for her career dreams.

Ubaldo Chavez, teacher and translate, knows the struggle that comes with generational poverty. But he found the way out – education – and is determined to help his students rise above.

When he agrees to translate for a mission team from the United States he expects…

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Chazown


A Greater Yes

Chazown

Craig Groeschel

About the Book:


You Can’t Really Live Without It
 
“Where there is no vision, the people perish” (Proverbs 29:18, kjv)

Tired of living half a life—or even a waking nightmare? Struggling to find meaning in a job you don’t like? Facing graduation or mid-life changes in a faltering economy? Wishing you could rekindle a dream you gave up long ago?

It’s time to get your vision checked!

In this practical, energizing guide, pastor and author Craig Groeschel shows how to live life fully by finding, naming, and achieving your unique, God-given goal. The secret: knowing your chazown, a Hebrew word for “vision,” “dream,” or “revelation.”

You’ll see how to identify your chazown by taking a fresh look at your core values, spiritual gifts, and experiences. You’ll understand the big picture—and the vital details. In this book—now newly revised and updated—you’ll find . . .

·        …

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