Waiting on a Baby at Christmas

I watched as my 9-year-old stepson raised his hand during a recent Sunday morning children’s sermon. “When you said that Jesus came to us as a baby,” he told the children’s ministry coordinator, “it makes me think about the baby in my stepmom’s belly.” Tears filled my eyes and I smiled, placing a hand on my very prominent belly, where his sister was making her presence known with unmistakable movements. As we approached Christmas this year, I enjoyed Jackson’s questions and observations as he made connections between my pregnancy and Mary’s.

“You think Jesus kicked Mary all the time, too?”

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Waiting in Advent

A lot of waiting happens in hospitals. I get to be chaplain to people who are waiting for an organ transplant, waiting for a baby to arrive, waiting for their discharge orders to go home, waiting for test results, waiting for the medication to work, waiting for death, their own or a loved one’s. Often they don’t know how long they will have to wait, and that makes the waiting harder. And no matter what they’re waiting for, they know that things will be different when the waiting is over, in ways that they may not even be able to anticipate. 

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Hope Is Stupid

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I’ve always considered myself something of an optimist. But lately, it sure is hard to stay one. The other night, I had a very emotional conversation with my roommate, and she told me, “You can’t give up hope.” I blurted out, “But hope is stupid! You just keep wasting time hoping for things that never happen and then you feel like an idiot, and all the realists get to say they told you so.” I was, admittedly, in a pretty bad place, in the midst of all the terrible news in the world and a big disappointment in my personal life. Sometimes I just want to be miserable for a while and not have anyone try to talk me out of it. Continue reading “Hope Is Stupid”