Thank you for reading and commenting, for sharing and writing me emails. I love doing life with you. It still amazes me that you are here, as part of my life, and I remain very thankful for you. As I was going over the year of writing, I was amazed at how much life has happened.
Please may we be the place to detox from the world – its values, its entertainment, its priorities, its focus on appearances and materialism and consumerism?
So here is my suggestion: Please stop treating womens’ ministry like a Safe Club for the Little Ladies to Play Church.
Sure, I will talk and teach and train but I am learning this: you will sing my songs.
And so I will sing a song of wonder and beauty about womanhood for you to learn from my lips.
I will lead the resistance of these lies in our home by living out a better truth.
I have a tremendous well of hope for the voice of women in the church. The men at the table may be loud but the pockets of hope and love and freedom are spreading like yeast. I see it. I feel it in the ground under my feet. More and more of us are sick of waiting for a seat and so we are simply going outside, to freedom, together. And here, outside, we’re finding each other and it’s beautiful and crazy and churchy and holy.
In which some guys do not want to kill stuff at mens’ ministry (A guest post by Ed Cyzewski)
We can waste a lot of time creating false dichotomies. At this point in time, I get the sense that one version of “masculinity” in men’s ministry has grown to the point that it’s almost a parody of itself.
Grow up, my bones whisper, leave behind the angst, the self-consciousness, the hyper-self-awareness of youth and open your eyes to see the world around you.
I am not seeking my youth anymore, not taking my cues from the teenagers or the perpetually young. I am not satisfied with the bread and circuses of our youth-obsessed culture. I want the fruit of the Spirit, the bread of Life, the crimson wine and the humility to pull out the seat next to me, inviting Wisdom to sit down for a spell.
I could probably include most of the “popular” ones since they represent a big part of my heart, too. But these ones, not quite as popular, are my favourites because they represent my year to me.
In which I share the story of Evelynn Joan’s birth – The birth of our littlest girl is the shining star of my year
I am reading Madeline L’Engle’s first volume of memoirs from the Crosswicks Journals, A Circle of Quiet. In it, she writes – for me, I am convinced – about this time of her life, this one that I am in right now, as “the tired thirties.” And I nearly wept with relief.
Darling, it’s all a mess. We don’t know what we’re doing half the time and later tonight we’re going to hang out in the front street, watching Anne ride her bike and Joe launch rockets and Evelynn resting in your strong arms. I’ll think to myself, tonight, like I do every night, I love you more. Grow old with me, my love, these are the days we’ll remember someday.
God, they’re beautiful, standing up there, smiling and unburdened. We are all on our feet and we’re hollering, we’re clapping, we’re crying, we’re loving them and crying out, “You did it!” and “Praise God!” and “Glory! Glory! Glory!” because it is glorious. I’m crying into Evelynn’s neck and my husband is beside me wiping tears and I know we’ll keep giving money, we’ll keep telling their stories to our friends, I’ll keep working here, we’ll keep doing any small, small thing we can so that another girl and another and another can experience this moment.
And I realise, yes, yes, I am.I’ve been happy for months and months now, even years now, so it’s not just a fluke.It’s no longer me fighting for a few days of happy in the midst of a lot of exhaustionand acedia and work and tiredness and overwhelmed-ness.It’s a bone-deep joy in knowingHe is enoughand the work he has given me right now is enoughand I am enough for us all.
My Practices of Mothering posts: I started a new series this past year and poured a lot of energy and prayer into them. Basically, it’s the stuff that I do (or try to do) to enjoy mothering in this season of my life.