Archive for the ‘A Day in the Life’ Category

God in the Crevices

Posted: December 5, 2012 in A Day in the Life

beams and crevices - 2I took a walk in this morning’s crisp, cool air, trying to clear my head and find where God was today.  For many reasons, I felt lost.  And so I found myself on a quiet walk through town, looking for God.  I happened upon the courtyard of an old, brick church in the middle of town.  This happens to be one of my favorite spots to think.  And to look for God.  Not that I think God actually lives at this particular address.  But in this courtyard sits a beautiful, plain wooden bench, encompassed by walls of worn and steady brick that offer a sort of fortress.  From there you can look to the sky above, unguarded.  Such a space expands my soul and allows it to feel protected enough to venture out and look for him.  I sat for a while, staring at one of the bricks beneath my feet, observing with great intent its color and grain and weather-worn cracks.  I knew that there, in that moment, God heard every one of the words I was too numb to say.

A while passed and I began to feel permission to enter the room on the other side of the brick wall, thinking that perhaps this had been my real destination all along.  The tall, gothic door opened almost arthritically, announcing to no one in particular my arrival.  My feet treaded cautiously across the ancient floor planks, creak by creak.  I was reminded of the inner sanctum of my heart as I entered this familiar place once again:  protected by brick and stone, noisy underfoot, but with a sense of beautiful expanse that allows one to breathe and to feel.  And to hear.  As I walked further in, sunlight glowed through each of the stained glass windows, illuminating their story.  I stood for a moment, wondering from which of the dark and hardened pews I could best find God.  I decided on the fourth pew back, on the right.  I sat a couple of spaces in, as if to make room for God should he decide to sit down beside me.  I knelt on the floor and felt welcomed by its sympathetic groan.

I didn’t say many words.  Sometimes “please, God” is the only prayer a soul need utter.  There is a sweetness and an honesty in silence, in that space when no words can be found.  As I knelt, my eyes were drawn up to the ceiling and I noted the strong, large beams that promised to allow neither the roof nor the heavens above it to come crashing through.  In that space and for that moment, my soul found sanctuary.  And in that room protected by weathered brick; there in the beams and in the cracks and crevices between, I found God.  He didn’t sit down beside me and he didn’t shout.  But in the quiet, in the sacredness of the silence I heard his faint whisper.

Tears.  Hope.  I lingered, allowing myself to feel the weight of a present God; of a God that is in this moment and the next; a God that is there in the brick and beams, and in the cracks and the crevices between.



Posted: September 11, 2011 in A Day in the Life

I have this old typewriter that sits on my desk. It was a thoughtful gift from a dear friend last year. Sometimes I look at it and imagine a hundred years of stories written with its keys and ribbon. A hundred years of headlines and happenings in the world and in the lives close to it. World wars and babies born. Love letters and farewell notes. Sometimes I think that if I could unspool its old ribbon and hold it up to the light I could read its story. The stories it has told. The stories it could tell me. The stories it will tell. (more…)

the pause button

Posted: September 6, 2011 in A Day in the Life

I can’t seem to buy inspiration today. I woke up early this morning determined to make a dent in the world as a writer. But I sit here, freshly uninspired. And it isn’t as though there are not enough good things happening in life for me personally, that’s not it. The flashing light of the pause button is really starting to drive me mad. It’s hard to recall this morning when I hit it, or maybe accidentally bumped it. But there it is. And here I am. (more…)

The food was amazing.  At least it was easy to imagine that it was.  You could smell it even as we pulled up to the house in the family wagon. We spilled out of the car with the grace of a wounded swan after our long trip on snowy roads.  There were six of us and the car was too small; our own interpretation of the clowns, a tiny car, and the big top.  My sister, two brothers, and I scurried across the snow to the front door, slipping and sliding.  The smallest by a mile, I always came in dead last.  The front door was opened.  Hugs and kisses were exchanged.  On to the first order of business, the bathroom.  Again, a race.  Again, last place.  Dang!  It had been a long trip.  As I rocked back and forth, waiting impatiently for my turn, I could smell the amazing aromas wafting out the kitchen, calling out to my rumbling stomach.  In this moment, I felt not unlike Odysseus, as his boat sailed past the luring song of the Sirens.  The Sirens had sought to lure Odysseus to imprisonment on their island and to ultimate death.  This, I suppose, is where the similarities end.  Odysseus was returning from war, on a mission to his rescue his wife and his kingdom from being overthrown.  I just had to pee and wash my hands so that I could eat.  Still, as my task felt no less noble, I lashed myself to the doorknob just in case.  OWW!  A good, solid punch in the arm was one way I always knew my brother really loved me.  (more…)


This post is a little unusual.  It’s 50% science lesson, 50% philosophy, 15% language study, and 50% math. Just kidding (it’s only 20% math).  But if you’ll hang with me, I promise, it works.  The picture above you is the famous Flux Capacitor.  We’re going to talk about it in a minute.  But before we do I’d like to set the (more…)

Nearing the end of an anything is enough reason to find a moment to pause.  This is especially so with the end of a calendar year.  It’s a natural time to reflect on the poignant moments of the previous 365.24 days with all its gladness and sorrows and to hopefully emerge with a sense of purpose and determination for the year that lies just on the other side of midnight.

At the end of a particular, strenuous last year, my family and I spent an unforgettable evening with two good friends and their children.  It was an evening filled with laughter and honest conversation about life and the realities it delivers at our doorstep each morning.  There was a question that had been bothering me for weeks, or to put it more honestly, years.  It was one of those burning questions that piques your curiosity but which you try to shove deep into your pocket for fear of what answering it would mean.  Well, as it is with most questions of this sort, it is only a moment or two before it sears through the fabric of wherever you’ve put it and tumbles out into the middle of the floor for everyone to see.   (more…)

the world needs you

Posted: December 20, 2010 in A Day in the Life

I’ve lived most of my life not really knowing who I am.  Let me state that a little more accurately.  I’ve lived most of my life not really knowing how to access that truest part of who I am.  Better.  I chose not to delete that first sentence because it communicates a truth and perspective that most of us would like to hide.  You see, I believe most people in the world live this way; not knowing how to live from their deepest, true selves.  But they make the mistake of seeing and saying it in a way that tells those in their world that they “haven’t yet found themselves”, or put in my favorite way:  “I’m almost 40 years old and I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up”.  I freely admit that I’ve thought this way much of my life as well.  But it’s not really true.  Actually, it’s an outright lie – and not always an unintentional one. (more…)

Cats.  Aren’t cats just great?  They’re furry and cute and…Okay, now that you’re totally into this blog, here’s the thing.  I’ve been noticing a trend in web-based media for a while now and it’s reached an internally distressing level for me.  Is “epidemic” too strong a word?  There are a number of writers – good writers – that put up some substantive, entertaining stuff each and every day.  They post their blogs on WordPress or Blogspot.  They put up videos on YouTube.  And it’s good stuff.  I mean, I’m talking about real, socially relevant issues that they’re hitting in an informative and compelling way.  (If you haven’t guessed, I’m one of those who I would consider on the more “substantive” side of the fence.)  Great stuff, but relatively unnoticed.

In the lobby of the WordPress/YouTube office building, upper management has cordoned off an area for their top performers.  These are the “crème de la cream” as my buddy used to say.  And you can’t miss them.  They’ve got the platform, the roped off area, the flashing marquee, and the bullhorn complete with the WordPress/YouTube company logo on it.  And do you know who these top performers are?  Cats.  Well, many of them are anyway.  Some of them are teenagers who can’t lip sync but try anyway or Justin Bieber doing anything at all.  Anyhow, each and every day, as I make my way to my little digital cubicle inside this empire, I have to pass these wonderful animals who have so adorably wrestled the culture’s attention away from the, shall we say, more relevant topics of the day.  (Side note:  Some of you are thinking “wow, WordPress has an office building? And they share it with the YouTube people?”  Well, actually, (more…)

Today, in 1901, an Italian physicist Guglielmo Marconi successfully sent the world’s first radio transmission across the Atlantic.  As I sit at my laptop writing this, I realize that this accomplishment hardly seems noteworthy.  I mean, just a few moments ago I sent a tweet that wrapped around the world a few dozen times, probably within seconds.  But read on.

Marconi was born in 1874.  In this horse-drawn era, both in the transportation of people and information, Marconi became fascinated with the work that a German physicist named Heinrich Hertz was doing in the field of radio waves.  In that day and age, it was difficult, at best, to conceive of information being transmitted through the air.  I imagine that it was even considered a sort of heresy to the common, unwritten laws of known boundaries.  (I don’t know whether this was literally true, but thinking so makes me feel better about the ideas I’ve been having lately.)   (more…)

learning to swim

Posted: June 29, 2010 in A Day in the Life, Faith, Family

There is a fear that a child feels when looking at the vast domain of water known as the pool.  Learning to swim.  Really?  Do I have to?  I survey all the sights and sounds of summer; the screams of other kids jumping into water that is a little too cold, the splashing, the laughter, the intermittent call and response of “Marco” and “Polo”.  It all looks like a lot of fun.  Then…then, there’s the water.  The matter of the pool.  Really?  Can’t I just know how to do this?  Why can’t I just be born knowing how to swim?  I hear my dad say those familiar words which, while they’re supposed to bring me comfort, actually intensify my already disproportionate fear.  “I’ve got you.”, he says.  And I know he does.  Sort of.  I mean, I know he means it.  It’s sweet, really.  That’s what dads are supposed to say.  But how can I know, I mean really know?  And so I sit here, feet dangling in the pool, longing to feel its coolness and the delight of summer fun.  And it does look like fun.  Does it ever!  They all look like they’re having so much of what I long for.  Then there’s the jumping in part.  My dad is patient, knowing that I don’t feel ready.  Can you ever be ready, I wonder?  I mean, if nobody is born knowing how to swim, then everybody has to have this jumping in part to really learn.  And they’ve (more…)