Author Archives: Bob Ritzema

About Bob Ritzema

I am a fourth-generation American of Dutch ancestry and am trained as a clinical psychologist. In 2012, I retired from Methodist University in North Carolina to return to . Michigan to help family. I maintain a part-time therapy practice in Grand Rapids. I currently worship at Monroe Community Church in Grand Rapids. I can be reached at bobritzema@hotmail.com.

The Christian Communist

I’ve been writing recently about stuff–our tendency to acquire too many things, our difficulty letting go, our need to simplify as we get older. Recently I ran across a quote on possessions and spirituality by Thomas Merton, the Trappist monk. … Continue reading

Posted in Culture, Spirit | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

When Fraility Arrives

Recently, David Sedaris wrote an article about his family, in particular his elderly father, who fell on the eve of his 95th birthday party. When family arrived he fell again and was disoriented, so he was admitted to a rehab … Continue reading

Posted in caregiving, Relationships | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Changed Lines of Generational Power

I have been reading Being Mortal by Atul Gawande, who is a surgeon, a staff writer for the New Yorker, and a Harvard Professor. He’s a busy guy! His book explores how medical advances have changed aging and death, not … Continue reading

Posted in Culture, Psyche, Relationships | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Save the World? Don’t Look at Me!

Earlier this year I read Assimilate or Go Home: Notes From a Failed Missionary on Rediscovering Faith (San Francisco: Harper One, 2016) by D.L. Mayfield. Mayfield is a young woman of faith who spent much of her early adulthood volunteering … Continue reading

Posted in caregiving, Spirit | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments

Cold Comfort at the Church of the Dancing Girl

I have mixed feelings about attending unfamiliar churches. On the one hand, it’s interesting to see the worship practices of various faith communities and meaningful to join with them in the majestic, never-ending stream of praise that, if the book … Continue reading

Posted in Relationships, Spirit | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Another Grandparent’s Day

Three years ago I wrote a post about visiting my grandkids’ school for Grandparents Day. Last week I went to Grandparents Day again; had gone last year as well, though I didn’t post anything about it on WordPress. I have … Continue reading

Posted in Relationships | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

Recovering From Loss: Giving Back

In his book Struck: One Christian’s Reflections on Encountering Death (IVP Books, 2017), Russ Ramsey, pastor at Christ Presbyterian Church in Nashville, Tennessee, tells the story of his encounter with a life-threatening illness. Ramsey developed a persistent fever caused by … Continue reading

Posted in Body, Relationships | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Living in an Age of Accumulation

George Carlin may be right about a house being a place to keep our stuff, but, nowadays, we’re less inclined to leave home in order to get more stuff. That’s because more stuff regularly appears magically on our doorsteps while … Continue reading

Posted in Culture, Psyche | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Seven Deadly Sins for Seniors: Lust

I’ve been writing about the seven deadly sins, using as my basis the book Glittering Vices: A New Look at the Seven Deadly Sins and their Remedies by Rebecca Konyndyk DeYoung. I’m especially interested in how these harmful habits manifest … Continue reading

Posted in Psyche, Spirit | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Seven Deadly Sins for Seniors: Gluttony

I’ve been writing about the seven deadly sins, using as my basis the book Glittering Vices: A New Look at the Seven Deadly Sins and their Remedies by Rebecca Konyndyk DeYoung. I’m especially interested in how these harmful habits manifest … Continue reading

Posted in Body, Spirit | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment