Tag Archives: faith

An Art Show and an Old Friend’s Vocation

I recently went to an exhibit of paintings by Franklin D. Speyers, one of my college roommates. Frank currently has a show entitled “West of the Imagination” at the Center Art Gallery of Calvin College, the school where we both … Continue reading

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Relocating to a Retirement Community: A New Life

I wrote recently about the first part of Richard L. Morgan’s book Settling In: My First Year in a Retirement Community. Morgan was initially enthusiastic about moving to a retirement community near his daughter, but after a month or so … Continue reading

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The Silver Lining While Waiting for Healing

I’ve had a difficult time of it recently. Though the surgery I had in February was successful, I was rehospitalized a couple weeks later with complications. Urine was leaking into my abdomen, causing severe pain. The doctors fitted me with … Continue reading

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A Wineskin in the Smoke

I had surgery a week ago. I had only undergone surgery under general anesthetic once before, an outpatient surgery about fifteen years ago. This time, I had a cancerous body part removed, meaning I was unconscious for longer than during … Continue reading

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Thinking About Cancer: Metaphors

I’ve been blogging recently about cancer. This topic has been on my mind since I am about to have my cancerous prostate removed. One thing I have been reflecting on is culture’s dominant metaphor for dealing with life-threatening illness. I’m … Continue reading

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The Benefit of Almost Dying

Within the course of a couple days I had conversations with two people who had nearly died recently. Each of them was hospitalized in critical condition, and in each case family members were summoned because the patient was more likely … Continue reading

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“Sit In Your Cell As In Paradise”

I recently ran across the Brief Rule of the Camaldolese order, part of the Benedictine family of monastic communities. The first Camaldolese community was established by St. Romuald, an Italian monk, about a thousand years ago.  I was particularly struck … Continue reading

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Lessons from a 93 Year Old

Carolyn at Beauty Beyond Bones recently wrote about an encounter with an old man at church. He arrived late, sat next to her, and created a fuss while trying to settle in and get caught up with the service. Carolyn … Continue reading

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Look Around. Your Family Consists of–Surprise!–Complex Human Beings

I recently read Rod Dreher’s book How Dante Can Save Your Life. Dreher wrote the book when he was struggling with depression resulting from family problems. Decades earlier he had moved away from his family in Louisiana and established a successful … Continue reading

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Dealing With Bereavement: Irrational Thoughts and Hope

In Joan Didion’s memoir of grief, The Year of Magical Thinking, she reports that her thoughts were often irrational. Her husband John Gregory Dunne died on December 30, but, according to her, “It was deep into the summer… before I … Continue reading

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