Simple Things

How many simple, wonderful things have you already enjoyed in your day today? Maybe you woke up warm, snuggled under layers of soft blankets. Perhaps you enjoyed a cup or two of freshly brewed coffee, probably thankful for the aroma long before you took that first sip. You may have shared a few sweet quiet […]

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Quaker Characters

In my work at hospice, I have a remarkable opportunity to see God’s light shining through so many different lives in so many unique and beautiful ways. Last year I spent time with a woman who had been born in Poland, and as young teen, she was kidnapped by the Nazis during World War II, […]

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Hall of Mirrors

When you were young, did you ever go through a carnival fun house? You know–the place with all the trick mirrors that made your reflection super tall and thin or really short and round, or perhaps give you a tiny body and a huge, warbly head? I was never much of a fan of those […]

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One Love, One World

“We’re all friends here.” How might that idea, that statement, that energy change the world around us right now? What if people elected to our government could say that—“We are all friends here”—in the White House, in the halls of Congress, in press conferences, on airplanes? What if leaders of nations, of denominations, of industries […]

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A Harvest of Peace

Last week right about now I was sitting on a bench overlooking the beautiful St. Joseph river, watching the way the water changed color as the sun rose in the sky, noticing the ducks and gulls flying toward Lake Michigan, feeling a wonderful sense of relaxation all around me—inside and out. That’s one of the […]

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10 Kindnesses

What does it mean to be truly and deeply kind? Maybe you can think of someone who was always kind to you. You might remember their smile, a gentleness, a lap you knew you could climb up on. Maybe she always had time for you. Or perhaps he was the only one—no matter what you […]

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A Shepherd’s Care

Well, it’s been quite stretch here for us lately. Unexpected events, uncertain outcomes, things like safety—our personal safety, the safety of our meeting—on our minds and hearts. This experience has made real for me what a blessing and a luxury it is to feel safe: some people live with insecurity and fear every single day. […]

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The Roots of Community

The original inspiration for our message today came weeks ago when I first saw a photo that Brooklyn Friends Meeting had posted online. The picture showed the sign out in front of their meetinghouse—much like ours—and it said, “Meetings for Worship Every First Day (Sunday) 11:00am. All Are Welcome.” And then, beneath that, there was […]

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Heartwarming

So how many times this week did you feel your heart warmed by reminders of goodness in the world, lifted with a feeling of hope, or maybe embraced as you felt connected to others and to God? Chances are, if you follow the news, those heartwarming moments are few and far between. It’s just part […]

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Emmanuel!

It’s taken me about 45 Christmases, but I think I’m finally ready to accept and admit and make my peace with the fact that I am not very good at wrapping presents. When I begin, I always envision this beautiful box wrapped in brightly colored paper—it has smooth sides and sharp pointy corners, and paper […]

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