Nigger is a nasty word. Like any other word, there’s nothing offensive about those particular letters strung together. It’s the connotation, and this one has a history as ugly as any. It has been spit out with venom and hatred, with whipping, chains, and every kind of inhumanity. I don’t know how Paula Deen said […]
Every day I offer up my writing, imagining the five loaves and two fish. Far too often I’m breaking up the bread before I lay it in the basket. And all I’m left with is a bunch of crumbs. I’m meting it out — this bit will go here, this bit I can blog. Too […]
These shoes look like ordinary high tops, in the Converse style that a lot of people are wearing these days. Actually, they’re much more, and not because they’re this incredible, burnished bronze, reminiscent of something Renaissance, or because they’re so comfortable (unlike most of the hard, flat, archless versions of this style), or because they […]
Most of us are familiar with the story of the son who rejects everything he’s ever known to live what he thinks is the good life. He moves far away from home and spends his entire inheritance chasing his misguided dreams. Eventually his life choices have narrowed to sleeping with the pigs he feeds. When […]
Our focus is on the downtrodden these days. Maybe it’s the media. Or the internet with its potent visuals making the world that much smaller. Maybe more of us are finding ourselves among their ranks, or dangerously close. Maybe the reality that it could happen to us brings it closer to home. Whatever the reason, […]
“Take your son, your only son, Isaac, whom you love … . Abraham’s heart had dropped to the pit of his stomach. He could feel the sweat cold on his temples, as he thought, “Lord, could this please not be a hard request, another stretching, another move beyond my comfort zone?” He had wanted to cover his ears, but he could not cover God’s mouth, and God had continued as if he had not known Abraham’s desperate thoughts, as if it did not matter.
I watch the monster who is me pressing the blade into my brother’s flesh until his blood runs hot over my own flesh. I see my brother’s face, the shadow passing over it when he realizes what I’m about to do. I rewind and see him running towards me from across the field. He is just within arm’s reach. I can choose to embrace him, but instead I pull my knife from its sheath.
Where in her life had she made the Wrong Turn? What had she done to deserve a barren womb? And where was God in all of this? What was the good of a God who controlled all things, if at best, he forgot you, or at worst, botched everything up?
He was not a coward. No, not in many things. But he had an irrational fear, a foreboding almost, that someone might kill him to get at Sarah.
Abraham and Sarah saw the smoke rise up from the valley, and the acrid smell of sulfur and burning filled the air. Just the day before, Abraham had entertained the three visitors. The Lord had said to Abraham, “I have heard a great outcry from Sodom and Gomorrah. I am going down to see if their actions are as wicked as I have heard.”
By the time she discovered the spring, her head was hot and throbbing. Dirt streaked across her face where her tears had mingled with the wilderness dust. Hagar sat down to rest, splashing the cool water on her face. For the first time since she left, she realized she had no plan.