For the young women I know

This election feels so much more high stakes, but every election feels like the end of the world. In a sense, every election is the end of a world, especially elections without an incumbent. A way of life is ending. Change comes, whether I like it or not.

But, little actually changes. Promises are issued. Some are broken. Bills are passed. And yet, few significant changes happen in my life because of this turnover. Maybe this time things will be different.

But, likely not.

I’m no longer afraid. God is bigger than this election.

Still, grief visits. Anger lurks not far behind. Continue reading

What if election season is good for us?

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Election season freaks me out. Following news on Twitter. Skimming through posts in my Facebook feed. Listening to political conversations. All of it is making me bananas. B-A-N-A-N-A-S.

And as I sat prepping sermon notes this morning, my emotions got in the way. I am afraid. When I get scared, I lose hope. I want to control people instead of trust them. I focus on guilt over invitation.

But, here’s the deal. None of those inclinations are helpful. They don’t produce the change I’d like in the world. Hope. Trust. Invitation. These are the things which move us together towards a goal. Continue reading

On Gratitude and Turning 35

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Birthday mug

J caught my interest in this knobby gray mug while we wandered through a fair trade shop in Minneapolis. I adore handmade artisan mugs, but always talk myself out of buying them as I reflect on the regular, useful mugs already taking up real estate in our cupboard. I eye the quirky mugs longingly, get a tiny amount of sticker shock, and walk away responsibly. Continue reading

Photo Friday: Growing in Rocky Places

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Trying something new here — Photo Fridays.

In the midst of the politics and the violence all over social media, I am weary, and my shoulders are struggling with the weight of the world’s brokenness. Maybe your shoulders need strengthening, too.

I needed to be reminded of this: beauty is still out there in the world, too. Hope is there, too.

These hen and chicks gave me a burst of courage. In the midst of what seems like an inhospitable environment, on a hot and dry rock, of all places, they hang in and keep growing.

In the face of what seems impossible or unbearable, may you and I find the strength and courage to keep growing and loving instead of giving up in defeat. May we lean into the discomfort we feel because of the world’s brokenness, rather than slinking away and hiding from it.

Even if evil seems like it’s winning, even if the challenge seems too big to tackle,  let’s be stubborn like these hen and chicks.

The door is open for all

041316 open gateEvery so often I peruse my drafts folder and find something I wrote way back when but didn’t ever publish. Somehow what didn’t fit then becomes a word I needed now. I find old Elizabeth preaching to today’s Elizabeth, while I kick myself thinking, “Why didn’t that message stick then?” Perhaps I just wasn’t ready for it.

Today’s post is one such example (last week’s Words on Repeat is another). I wrote this last fall, but couldn’t bring myself to finish or post it. Then, I plumb forgot about it as the whirligig of time moved full speed ahead.

Today’s me needed reminding that I am loved and valuable. Perhaps you might need the same thing. And so, I offer some months-old reflection on Hebrews 10. Continue reading