Friday, November 29, 2013

7 Quick Takes: feast days, Ashley Cleveland, Pope Francis and more!

So many, many good things this week.  We felt pretty lucky to kick it all off with an Ashley Cleveland concert in an intimate little space at Christ Church.  Ashley's story and her soul make me glad to be a woman and a Christian.  Her husband Kenny Greenberg played stuff on his guitar that made me cry.  

Ms. Cleveland finished the evening with a John Hiatt song Ridin' With the King.  She mangificently retooled the tune to conclude with a perfect, from-her-toes recognition of a King who raises the dead.  (I'm almost certain her vocals could muster at least the partly-dead).  A fitting reminder as we headed into Christ the King Sunday.

Our version was unplugged, but this will give you a dang good idea of what I'm talking about.

Our twenty-third anniversary is good.  Finding autumn in Texas is good.

Thanksgiving is good.

And so we begin our familial, civic and liturgical feast days:  our wedding anniversary, our dear Rebekah's Hanukkah gatherings, Thanksgiving, Alex's birthday tomorrow, Natalie's birthday next week, Advent, twelve days of Christmas, New Year's and Epiphany.  Please, Spirit of Jesus, help me be present to it all.  

For now, I have a poem to write for my son's twentieth birthday in less than 24 hours.  Spirit of God, help me with that, too.

Think Christian published an article today that I wrote earlier this week:  Why public spaces are good places for feeding the homeless

I find it no less than providential that the same day the editor Josh Larsen emailed me the link to the NY Times article reporting pending restrictions to feeding the homeless in public in Los Angeles I also began reading the letter Pope Francis released to the world-wide Church on Sunday.  The two articles, read back to back, became a sort of call and response of confession for me. 

Great words I read online this week:

November 29 on The Writer's Almanac: Today is the birthday of C.S. Lewis, Madeleine L'Engle and Louisa May Alcott.  What a great day.

Ethical Shopping Guide at The Art of Simple: Want to bless instead of curse with the money you spend on gifts this season? My friend Katie helped put together this list of resources, brands, shops and products who employ positive efforts in environmental stewardship, no forced labor in the making of products, and ethical treatment of employees.

How the Liturgical Calendar Keeps Me Sane by Tish Harrison Warren at The Well blog: I've been pondering how to say what I really want to say to the world about Advent this year.  My friend Tish is helping me figure it out.  Read her words, please.

I'm so grateful to be part of a church community who marks the beginning of the Church year so well.  If you live in Austin, join us?


A beauty and grace-filled weekend for us all, dear ones.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

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