Showing posts from January, 2013

confessions of an ordinary mama.

This book (my very favorite) and a few friends have inspired me to name some of my confessions from these first years of motherhood. Jasper turns two in a few weeks and I've been reflecting a lot about the ways I've been changed - as a wife, a woman, a professional, and a human being. Uff da. Before I begin the list, here's the greatest confession of all:

I had a dream a few nights ago. There was a 1-800 number I could call to legally change my child's birth date. "A lot of moms call when their kids are this age - he'll never know," the customer service lady reassured me. I was hoping to push his birthday back two weeks - two more weeks to get ready for his party and his special day at daycare. Things have been a little nutty lately and I was sure two weeks would give me the extra time I needed to give him a great birthday celebration.

Last year Matt and I frosted two practice cakes before his "real" cake. That's how ready we were for Febru…


When you're in the thick of it, perspective is thin. It's hard to see whether God is present, at work, or even aware. A shooting star, a friend's words, a holy pie chart - I find myself begging for a tangible sign whenever my anxiety is in charge.

I am in thick of it with a few folks right now. Visibility is only a few inches in front of their faces because life is harsh, choking out perspective. They fear making the wrong choice. They feel stuck. They can't figure out why God would keep quiet during all of this chaos. I don't know. I just don't know...They trail off and in the moment where silence sometimes turns into peace, they start up again. You can feel the hamster wheel in their brains kick up a breeze as they start analyzing again - their thoughts spin with futile urgency. They speak to me as though telling me creates special power or answers - that I might will change in their lives by using my emergency Kingdom of God contact on speed dial. I lean int…

just three.

I've received phone calls lately because friends of colleagues think I'm an expert on this solo pastor, working mother, part-time pay, urban context stuff. They've been told I have insight, which always makes me laugh out loud. I don't have a clue and it shows. I don't know who refers me or who's fooled, but I do have a few things that make all the difference in keeping perspective and staying alive...

I have a village. But you already know that. I've written about the way family, friends, babysitters, child care workers, and parishioners love my son. When I am not enough, they are there. Everything about that fact is both deeply difficult and completely merciful.

I have a Matt. This guy is something else. Last month I thought I was doing so much better tracking my hours at work and getting away, but he was quick to tell me the truth. You're there less, but it's here more. You never power down - I can see the piles you bring home and the distraction i…

ten things.

1. A man from Sierra Leone came to Zion 7 times since Monday morning. He rang the bell 7 times hoping to meet me and each time he was told I wasn't there. I was giving home communion and visiting pastors from ZOOM partner congregations. I was at a text study and making an offer on a house and buying candles from the Dollar Tree.

2. Then, suddenly, I was there and I got to meet Ezekiel. He told me that he lives a few blocks away and had a dream that he should join Zion. "But first I must know the head of the church. I must meet the one who will lead us." I told him that Jesus will lead us, but that I'd be happy to help. He flashed a wide, bright smile and told me I was a Funny Sister.

3. Donald has seizures and grew up in an orphanage and is a few cards short of a deck. He shows up hours early to the Lyndale Community Dinner and calls me every week to get my advice about things. This week he called to tell me that he and Julie were going to see the movie Promised Land…


Jasper is talking more. Nothing really useful yet. I wouldn't call it communicative, but it is entertaining. My favorite word is "soppy". He chants it over and over when he's content, curious, mischievous, or giddy. I like to think it's an abbreviation of "so happy"...because he is.

Epiphany is on Sunday and I love Epiphany. The first people to worship Jesus were pagans - foreign astronomers who put down everything to follow a star and a dream. And it took awhile. Their round about route from Persia to King Herod to Bethlehem took almost two years. They never made it to the barn or the manger. By the time they showed up, their treasure chests felt heavy with time and there was a full blown toddler to worship. Now the star was resting above a house. With a kid potty training or coloring or sitting in a time out chair.

Two years ago, dreams caused Mary to say yes, Joseph to stay, and wise men to travel. Miracles happened, faith was changed, and things go…