Making room for growth

Lately, I’ve felt God speak to me through the idea of soil.

It’s sort of funny, because I don’t garden. In fact, I’ve never grown a plant, vegetable, fruit, or flower in my life. I grew up on asphalt, mowed grass, and pool water. Far from any farm or vegetable patch (Though I’ve always loved the phrase “vegetable patch,” because it sounds sort of inviting and yummy).

Nonetheless, I believe there is much to learn from nature, and the substances and cycles of nature – even if we’re not well acquainted with them in our daily lives. Jesus used a lot of farming analogies to explain faith and life, and I think we should try to make an effort to understand them. So, soil.

Continue reading “Making room for growth”

Overcoming fear, and other things that can feel impossible

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These past couple of weeks have been difficult. Two weeks ago, I had a plan. I had finally reached a “life stage” I had been anticipating for about a decade. Now, I’m back to where I started – no plan and no idea of what the future holds [if it’s not clear already, I went through a breakup].

What I found in the midst of feeling like “the bottom fell through” on my hopes and dreams were things I didn’t expect: security, faith, some courage.

Continue reading “Overcoming fear, and other things that can feel impossible”

Confident, unashamed, audacious hope

A study on Rahab

For a long time now, I’ve asked myself this question:

What is hope, really?

As I’ve grappled with different challenges or circumstances that seem insurmountable—as does every human being on the planet, to varying degrees—hope has sometimes felt elusive. Like just a word, and not something we can hold onto with certainty.

Continue reading “Confident, unashamed, audacious hope”

Germany part 2: hope in the face of horror

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It seems like the world is going crazy. Terrorism, political crises, gun violence, fear and paranoia pepper the news, and it can feel increasingly like we’re in a world ruled by chaos and not control. I’m one country over from France, where a truck driver plowed into a crowd of hundreds on Thursday night, killing 84 people. I’m living in Germany, where one-fifth of the population is from Turkey, a nation where an attempted coup for power unraveled only this weekend. On Sunday afternoon, I ate lunch with a Yazidi family from Iraq, forced to leave their country because of Isis. Certain crises feel a little more immediate this side of the Atlantic, although tragedy is striking the U.S. too. Regardless, I am struck again and again by the seeming impossibility of maintaining one thing in the face of horror: hope. Continue reading “Germany part 2: hope in the face of horror”

Hope in the face of horror

Hope in the face of horror
Hope in the face of horror

It seems like the world is going crazy. Terrorism, political crises, gun violence, fear and paranoia pepper the news, and it can feel increasingly like we’re in a world ruled by chaos and not control. Right now, just one country over from France, where a truck driver plowed into a crowd of hundreds on Thursday night, killing 84 people. I’m spending four weeks in Germany, where one-fifth of the population is from Turkey, a nation where an attempted coup for power unraveled only this weekend. On Sunday afternoon, I ate lunch with a Yazidi family from Iraq, forced to leave their country because of Isis. Certain crises feel a little more immediate this side of the Atlantic, although tragedy is striking the U.S. too. Regardless, I am struck again and again by the seeming impossibility of maintaining one thing in the face of horror: hope. Continue reading “Hope in the face of horror”

Germany part 1: no fear in love

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I don’t know if it was the first time I had ever met a refugee, but I do remember the first time I met a refugee from Syria. I’m sure somewhere in my twenty-something years, I’ve met someone who was forced to leave their native country because they were unable to live, work, and love in the place called home. But it probably didn’t mean anything to me. Maybe I even thought they were lucky to have left, considering living in their home country sounded like a nightmare.  I couldn’t see and didn’t understand that home is still home, regardless of how bad it is. The reality of it didn’t hit me until I heard Sam’s story. Continue reading “Germany part 1: no fear in love”