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Essay

Essay

To Do Things the Right Way

At least once every year, my Grandma Gillespie would pack my sister, two brothers, and me into her green 52 Chevy and drive us past her old homestead near Honey Creek in Ada, Michigan. On the way, she would regale…
Essay

Christmas Smells

Lately, it's easy to get caught up in either anxiety or rage. The speed of cultural change, and the inevitable backlash, leads to a permanent state of dis-orientation. As we get caught up in careers, family life, political campaigns, it's…
Northwestern College
Essay

Paying Attention

For the past eight weeks, members of my church have been participating in a small group series we called StoryLab. Each Sunday I preached on a different biblical character, looking at how God showed up in their story and used…
Essay

Blessed and Grateful

“Blessed are the grateful” was a phrase that was used in the church I visited this week, and it made me think of this blog. I’m so grateful for this group of writers. It is wrenching work to put some…
Essay

Ask the 101 Year Old

“Hey, Grandpa. How do you get people to give money to something?” I’m sitting with my husband’s 101-year-old grandfather at Thanksgiving. I’ve been trying for the past few days to find my fundraising pitch for this blog, and so far…
Essay

Dear Reader

Over the last week, I've been at various events around Grand Rapids and Holland and have had the odd, but very delightful, experience of people (many of whom I hadn't previously met) coming up to me and telling me that…
Essay

Please Give Blood

I’m a pretty regular blood donor. At a recent donation, I ran into an acquaintance. Not really a friend, but a good guy--genial, jaunty, exuberant. A thorough-going secularist. Somehow in our encounters that always comes across. Not in an aggressive…
Second Reformed Church, Pella, IA
Essay

These Times

The sabbatical of my colleague Lyle Bierma this Fall presented me the chance to teach the half-semester “Christian Reformed Church History” class for the first time. A couple weeks into the course we were up to the point of tracking…
Calvin Theological Seminary
Essay

Hospitable Discourse

In twentieth century America, hospitality began to regain some cultural footing. Dorothy Day and Peter Maurin founded the Catholic Worker movement in the 1930s and offered soup kitchens, communitarian farms, and voluntary poverty as a way of expressing Christian hospitality.…
Northwestern College