Category Archives: Discernment

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Full of Days

Full of Days: On Retirement and Deserts I’ve always liked my feet. I thought they were quite pretty, at least as feet go. But a few months ago, after a long hike in the mountainous desert, I took off my shoes and socks and someone else’s feet emerged. Far from pretty, they looked like a…
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For Everything There is a Season

For Everything There is a Season For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to…
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A Constant Squeeze on the Heart

A Constant Squeeze on the Heart In her 2018 book, The Magnanimous Heart, the Buddhist teacher Narayan Helen Liebenson writes about the transitory nature of life and the spiritual challenge it brings. The conditions of our particular lives- our jobs, homes, relationships, the bodies we inhabit-are always changing, and with change comes loss. We know…
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Engaged Listening

Engaged Listening as a first step toward addressing racism As we live through a time of pandemic and protest, I revisited the Rule of Benedict to read  what wisdom Benedict might speak into these tumultuous days. I found guidance right at the outset of the Prologue: Listen. Listen is the first word of the Rule…
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Waste Not, Want Not

Waste Not, Want Not Waste not, want not was a mantra ever present in my childhood, passed down from grandparents that formed a way of life. How often those words have come to mind as I read the newspaper and watch the daily news. Stories of farmers tilling under mature crops and dumping thousands of…
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Easter is a Season (Not a Day)

Easter is a Season (Not a Day) A Strange Easter The First Sunday of Easter was strange this year. Like many people, I sat in front of a computer screen to participate in  communal worship. Trying to celebrate the Resurrection without physically gathering in community just didn’t feel like Easter. Many friends and acquaintances said…
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Resurrection in Relationship

Resurrection in Relationship: A Reflection on John 20-21   Growing up, I thought of “the Resurrection” as a one-time event, an event where Jesus was “raised” up out of the tomb. As a child, I thought that Jesus’ body simply floated up into the sky. I imagined that Jesus was “absent” from the tomb (and…
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First Day of Spring

First Day of Spring On March 21, the first day of meteorological spring, my husband and I got in our car for a change of scenery and went hiking at a nature preserve.  The emerging sun made us feel hopeful for an early spring.  As we walked and noticed the dead grass, leafless trees and…
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Dignity: An Uncomfortable Lesson in Hospitality

Dignity: An Uncomfortable Lesson in Hospitality Several years ago, I learned an uncomfortable lesson about hospitality. I was working in a congregation-based shelter for families experiencing homelessness in St. Paul. Because the 55 beds that Ramsey County had in its shelter were always full, congregations acted as “overflow shelters,” housing up to 20 people each…
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The School of Lectio Divina: An Invitation to Abundance

By the mid-point of the School of Lectio I wrote this in my journal, “I have fallen in love with Scripture as prayer!”  It was as if God and I were rekindling an old friendship on a long weekend retreat together.  I was learning anew what it might look like to trust God enough to live a life completely surrendered to God.
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