Back to Basics

The holidays are officially over. I haven’t taken down the Christmas tree or the outside lights, but I’ve stopped turning them on. I miss the sparkling on the shrubs, especially now that they are covered in snow, glowing softly through their chilly, powdery blankets. But it’s time to take up the usual activities, putting away Christmas and New Year celebrations for the next eleven months. I am ready. But what to write about now?

With all the political nastiness, all the uncertainty, all the fear and anger, it would be easy to add my own frustrations to the cacophony. But what earthly good would it bring? There’s a difference between standing up and speaking out for what I believe in and releasing a torrent of negativity. Righteous anger and action are not the same as self-righteous rhetoric and fearful reaction. At this year’s beginning, I am going to do my best to remember and honor the difference. So for me, it’s back to basic questions: what is necessary, life-giving, world blessing? What is beautiful? How do I give back to this holy world?

Years ago, I read a few books in a series that explored fundamental actions/elements of life. Some were amazing, others pedantic, but I did like the topics. As I begin 2017, I’ll take a look at them. I hope you do, too -and I hope you let me know what you think. Dialogue is so much more interesting than monologue…peace and blessings.

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I am a Christian educator and writer.I have worked in churches, denominational offices, and seminaries. I have a PhD in Theology from Princeton Theological Seminary, with a focus on Practical Theology and educating in faith. In 2010, my book, "How the Other Half Lives: the challenges facing clergy spouses and partners," was published by Pilgrim Press. I believe that words can build doorways that lead to encounters with God through the Spirit.

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