What relevance could a 6th-century cathedral possibly have for the life of a 21st-century girl? That's a fair question. But a visit to the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul, Turkey taught me that Christians from the past can speak into our present.
We still wander awed, says Annie Dillard, because this world is dear. And the people in it are beloved. We were made for this word, even in its splintered state. As we take in the ravages of our frayed and nibbled state, we don’t long for an ending. No, we long for renewal.
We cannot escape the reality that our identity—the fabric of our being—is very much made up by those who are woven into our lives. And many of the threads knit into us are not those we choose, but those that are given.
Looking at art with kids is a way of exposing them to the marvelous diversity of artistic expression and to a range of cultures. A visit to an art gallery or museum can be an opportunity not just to cultivate self-control and attention, but also to nurture creativity and curiosity.
Blessing is prayer as gift. When my oldest daughter turned twelve, this is the blessing that I wrote to send her into the next decade, the decade of becoming a woman.
Sixteen years ago today I was staring out a window in Texas watching torrential rains flood the garden where I was supposed to be married later in the day. I learned then, what I’ve learned many times since, that a marriage takes improvisation and the willingness to change course, sometimes at a moment’s notice. We …
My eyes flit across the surfaces of things, as if I’m rushing around glancing at scattered pieces of a puzzle without the attention to start finding connections, much less meaning. I can’t still the turning of the world; but I do have some control over the degree to which my mind and soul are carried along with it. Here are a few things I’m trying in order to cultivate internal stillness.
Reading well makes travel meaningful. On a recent trip to Cappadocia, I traveled with Gregory of Nyssa and Gregory of Nazianzus.