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Learning to Get Life Right

Learning to Get Life Right

People are more than one thing. Our worst moments do not define us. None of us is merely petty, angry, stubborn, self-absorbed, impatient, or hypocritical. We can also be kind, selfless, courageous, persistent, curious, and honest. Everybody operates from mixed...
How Imperfect People Love

How Imperfect People Love

“It’s not about you, it’s about them.” When I’ve been injured by another person’s cruel words or actions, friends have said this to me. Maybe your friends have consoled you in a similar way. And there is sad truth to what my friends have said. Some people offload...
A Moment of Clarity

A Moment of Clarity

Several of my friends are in long-term recovery from alcoholism or drug addiction. Many of them tell stories about hitting bottom.  They lost a job or a spouse. A DWI landed them in jail. Their children, their parents, and their friends wouldn’t speak to them anymore....
Ordinary Martyrs

Ordinary Martyrs

Constance died at the age of thirty-three. A Yellow Fever epidemic swept through the city of Memphis in 1878. At one point, seventy people were dying each day from the disease. Eventually, the population was so diminished that the city lost its municipal charter....
Healing Justice

Healing Justice

When I say “Jonah,” I bet most people think about the story of a reluctant prophet. Balking at God’s call to go to Nineveh, Jonah took a boat as far as you can go in the opposite direction. Famously, after a storm at sea threatens to swamp the boat he’s boarded, Jonah...
Body Language

Body Language

My mother learned English informally by immersion. She entered America through Ellis Island from war-ravaged Austria speaking only her native German. By the time I came along, her accent had grown faint. She navigated our English-speaking world effortlessly, but her...