A Meditation on Joy

"Sing praises to the LORD, O you his faithful ones, and give thanks to his holy name. For his anger is but for a moment; his favor is for a lifetime. Weeping may linger for the night, but joy comes with the morning" (Psalm 30:4-5). I heard this story about a college student practicing the piano. They were trying to learn the song "Joy Cometh in the Morning." There was a complicated chord change right after "Weeping may endure for the night, but.…

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The Waiting

“I will wait for the LORD, who is hiding his face from the house of Jacob, and I will hope in him.” (Isaiah 8:17) Waiting is not something I’m very good at. I admit I’m impatient and it’s hard for me to watch the slow pace of change over the years. Yet that all changed this year, everything changed didn’t it? Almost overnight we went from being these incredible social beings to isolated, stuck at home, and separated - not just by walls,…

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Unconsolable Grief

“O LORD God of hosts, how long will you be angry with your people’s prayers? You have fed them with the bread of tears, and given them tears to drink in full measure. You make us the scorn of our neighbors; our enemies laugh among themselves. Restore us, O God of hosts; let your face shine, that we may be saved.” Psalm 80:4-7We have entered a time of grief like none other in my lifetime. And my life has been filled with grief…

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Travel and Grief in a Pandemic

Last week I was supposed to be in New York spending some time with my family for my dad’s birthday. When I booked my flight back at the beginning of June, we still had low numbers of new cases in Idaho, I had an e-credit to use from a different cancelled trip from this fall, and flights were as cheap as I have ever seen them to Albany or Syracuse. I booked my flight knowing that things could change and I might not…

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When Memory Fades

Do not cast me off in the time of old age; do not forsake me when my strength is spent. O God, from my youth you have taught me, and I still proclaim your wondrous deeds. So even to old age and gray hairs, O God, do not forsake me, until I proclaim your might to all the generations to come. Psalm 71:9,17-18We visited her on the farm year after year. She arose at 5 am, braided and rolled up her long hair,…

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From Grief to Fatigue to Spiritual Rest

“Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” Matthew 11:28-29 Early into this pandemic and our sheltering-in-place I started talking to people about their feelings of grief. In March and April perhaps you were feeling sad, irritable or unsettled. A friend told me that she was feeling…

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