climate changenaturespirituality

Refugia

When Mount Saint Helens erupted in May of 1980, it lost 1,300 feet of elevation and gained a new mile-wide crater. The debris avalanche and ashfall from the volcanic blast devastated the mountain and its surroundings, crushing, burning, killing, and coating everything in ash. Everyone…
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May 11, 2019
spirituality

Disappointed in a Disappointed Jesus

Dear Luke, Thank you for sending me your manuscript. I’ll try to respond honestly, as you requested. Those lyrical opening chapters: fantastic. Beautifully paced, full of poetry. Along with Zechariah and Mary and Simeon, I was dazzled by angels visitant and wowed by prophetic utterances,…
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April 13, 2019
memoirMichigannature

Blizzard, Looking Out

Morning, west window The sky feels oddly bright, considering the snow thickly falling in clustered flakes. The wind gusts, whirling flakes into powder, snowglobing my backyard vista. For a moment, a cloud of white obscures the trees, the neighbors’ backyards, the whole world. I exist…
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February 2, 2019
cultural commentarypop culture

On Shaving and Shaming

Earlier this week, Gillette dropped a new advertisement called “We Believe: The Best Men Can Be.” Well, you would think they had dropped a match in a puddle of gasoline. Using all the slick production values a $17 billion corporation can muster—including a lush musical…
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January 19, 2019
liturgical yearspirituality

Advent in the Twilight

Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. -- Gen. 1:2 I’ve been enjoying darkness this year. Not minding the winter darkness is a helpful survival skill in Michigan,…
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December 22, 2018
college lifesilly

How To Achieve Syllabus Efficiency

On a typical day, I prepare to teach three different texts for the three courses I’m currently teaching: Shakespeare, Early British Literature, and introductory creative writing. This seems inefficient, don’t you think? What if I could prepare only one reading for all three courses?
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October 27, 2018
spiritualitytheology

Dwelling: A Scriptural Survey

Some quick work with online tools surprised me: the Bible is full of dwelling, from the Pentateuch to Revelation—at least in English. It turns out that dwell is one of those rich, Anglo-Saxon words that composts together several related concepts into a fertile loam.
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October 13, 2018
cultural commentarytheology

True Forms

Part of my fascination, I suppose, is that we are talking about a face here. The article nicely rehearses the significance of the human face while visually explicating the devastating destruction of Katie’s. What’s compelling here is the idea of coming face-to-face, so to speak,…
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September 1, 2018
dunesmemoirMichigannature

Pitcher’s Thistle

What is the value of a thistle? We don’t entirely know. I suppose God does. I suppose the little prickler gives praise to God in its own thistly way, just by being itself in cooperation with other nearby creatures being themselves. Is that enough for…
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August 18, 2018