Monthly Archives: December 2007

The ordinary so extraordinary. 0

He came, quietly impossible, Out of a young girl’s womb, A love as amazingly marvelous As his bursting from the tomb. The child was fully human, This child was wholly God. The hands of All Love fashioned him Of mortal flesh and bone and blood, The ordinary so extraordinary The stars shook in the sky […]

This birth has death forevermore confused. 0

This birth has death forevermore confused. That God, the holy & immortal one Should take on mortal flesh, should be abused, Be killed–oh, how could such a thing be done? What does this death then do to death? Death grasps the holy body of the Lord, Crushes the mortal flesh, lets side be gored– Oh, […]

The birth of wonder. 1

As I grow older I get surer Man’s heart is colder, His life no purer. As I grow steadily More austere I come less readily To Christmas each year. I can’t keep taking Without a thought Forced merrymaking And presents bought In crowds jostling. Alas, there’s naught In empty wassailing Where oblivion’s sought. Oh, I’d […]

The light still shines and cannot be extinguished. 4

So we rejoice in the mystery of this tiny baby. We give presents to each other as reminders of his great gift of himself to us. We trim the Christmas tree, although the Christmas tree was not originally a Christian symbol, but came out of northern Europe and the worship of different gods. But any […]

It is as if infancy were the whole of incarnation. 0

This time of the year the new-born child is everywhere planted in madonnas’ arms hay mows, stables, in palaces or farms, or quaintly, under snowed gables, gothic angular or baroque plump, naked or elaborately swathed, encircled by Della Robbia wreaths, garnished with whimsical partridges and pears, drummers and drums, lit by oversize stars, partnered with […]

Open door to forever. 3

On the eighth day after Jesus’ birth a prophecy laced with further torment was spoken to Mary: “A sword will pierce your own soul”–a pain for her to ponder and dread for over thirty years. During that waiting time, Jesus directed some of his hardest sayings to his gentle mother–words that must have wounded. But […]

I did something fun today. 5

I hung out with Richard Petty! He’s the KING OF NASCAR, Y’ALL. I just thought you should know.

That Dwight, so disobedient. 0

Brooklyn Bridge Park.

First coming. 0

He did not wait till the world was ready, till men and nations were at peace. He came when the Heavens were unsteady, and prisoners cried out for release. He did not wait for the perfect time. He came when the need was deep and great. He died with sinners in all their grime, turned […]

O Simplicitas. 0

An angel came to me and I was unprepared to be what God was using. Mother I was to be. A moment I despaired, thought briefly of refusing. The angel knew I heard. According to God’s Word I bowed to this strange choosing. A palace should have been the birthplace of a king (I had […]

Impossible things. 1

In Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures Through the Looking Glass, the White Queen advises Alice to practice believing six impossible things every morning before breakfast. It’s good advice. Unless we practice believing in the impossible daily and diligently, we cannot be Christians, those strange creatures who proclaim to believe that the Power that created the entire […]

After Annunciation. 1

This is the irrational season When love blooms bright and wild. Had Mary been filled with reason There’d have been no room for the child. – Madeleine L’Engle I hope you can find it in your hearts to forgive me for posting this more than once here, but it sums up the miracle of Christmas […]

Redeeming all brokenness. 2

(This one’s long. Sorry.) As we move into Advent we are called to listen, something we seldom take time to do in this frenetic world of over-activity. But waiting for birth, waiting for death–these are lightning times when the normal distractions of life have lost their power to take us away from God’s call to […]

My pecan heritage. 1

In my family, there is a famous story featuring my stepcousin and my grandma’s pecan pie. When my stepcousin was engaged, he once went to one of his fiancee’s family’s gatherings and was given a piece of pecan pie. Someone said, “Isn’t this just the best pecan pie you’ve ever tasted?” and he, being an […]

Too much to ask / Opposing parallels 0

It seemed too much to ask of one small virgin that she should stake shame against the will of God. All she had to hold to were those soft, inward flutterings and the remembered sting of a brief junction–spirit with flesh. Who would think it more than a dream wish? an implausible, laughable defense. And […]

A tradition unlike any other. 5

It’s the Christmas season, and you know what that means: It’s time for my annual It’s a Wonderful Life bashing. Only, this time, Time magazine is making my points for me. In the holiday classic It’s A Wonderful Life, George Bailey (Jimmy Stewart) sees what life would have been like had he never been born. […]

A widening of the imagination. 1

It came to me, recently, that faith is “a certain widening of the imagination.” When Mary asked the Angel, “How shall these things be?” she was asking God to widen her imagination. All my life I have been requesting the same thing–a baptized imagination that has a wide enough faith to see the numinous in […]

Transformation. 1

Some people say that the internet is cold and impersonal, or else that it is chock-full of serial killers and people who aren’t who they pretend to be. Let’s ignore the fact that all of us pretend to be something other than what we are, at least some of the time. Or maybe that’s just […]