Heads boiled like cabbages

Yesterday I read The Minister's Wife: A memoir of faith, doubt, friendship, loneliness, forgiveness and more one last time, every word, each sentence, every scene, each stumbling thought.

Shades of Light

With her newest book Shades of Light, Sharon Garlough Brown paints a picture of mental health challenges, anxiety, depression, grief and ultimately the hope and community and friendship she writes about so well.

Craft, Cost & Call: How to Build a Life as a Christian Writer

Written with co-author Patricia Paddey, this new book is our love letter to writers.

The power of “You are welcome.”

Recently I texted “You’re welcome” to a friend, who had thanked me for two simple things I did. A magazine I gave her and a conversation I had with her son, who is the same age and temperament as my son. I have all the time in the world and space in my heart for …

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Writing books from my Facebook Writing Friends

I presented a seminar at Urbana18 this year, on The Beautiful Intersection of Faith and Writing (writers can’t have normal titles for their writing workshops). In preparation I asked for suggested writing books from my Facebook writing buddies. I asked. They answered. I have another opportunity to speak to young writers about writing and faith, …

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Trust and Enjoy. And a book.

During the first week of my master’s studies, away from home and back in Halifax, I called Brent more than once, speaking in my weary, weepy, wavering voice. I was afraid of failure, of wasting our money, of making a fool of myself, of not making any friends (like I was back in kindergarten), and, …

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A few weekends ago, two of the kids and I drove from Ottawa to Malagash where my parents live, for a surprise birthday party for my mom, who turns 80 in January. There were so many surprises. • There is a potato museum in New Brunswick. It’s called Potato World. • My sister is correct …

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Three lovely moments

I have been thinking lately that life can be very pleasant, if you count up all the lovely moments. So, here are three of my recent ones that have stayed with me, cheering me up and along. A couple of Sundays ago I was driving to church and I passed a man mowing his lawn, …

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Remembering Eugene Peterson, and his wonderful wife Jan

Years ago, my husband Brent and I moved to Vancouver so he could do a Master of Divinity at Regent College. I think I can say, although others might disagree, that it was a heyday for Regent. No other Canadian school fully lived out the idea yet of graduate theological education for the lay person …

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Writing personal essays

Personal experience and writing skill engage in a warm embrace in the personal essay. They need each other and they know it. In the personal essay the writer carefully and prayerfully chooses to bare their soul to the reader, offering up some of their most ordinary, tender and difficult experiences to the world as a …

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Holly is 20

The other day I sat in church, two pews back from a young couple with a little girl who has sprouted up in recent weeks, like a tulip. She moved away from their pew, exploring the stand up fan that offered some relief on that muggy, hot Sunday. Her parents watched her closely as she moved …

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Wendy sent me two whole pies

I remembered this week one of the nicest things that happened to me last year. Two writing friends sent me pies. Belinda made them. Wendy paid for them. I remembered this because Wendy Nelles died last week, very young in her early 60s. I didn’t know her deeply, but I knew her generosity to Canadian …

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