When a Lion Needs Courage

The Wizard of Oz is well-known by many. It is referenced in writing and in conversation; called an ‘icon of pop-culture’ for Americans. In terms of characters, there is Dorothy, a sweet cheery girl from Kansas who just wants to get home after she is displaced from the prairies to an unknown land. There is […]

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Traveling Mercies

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When I was a kid there was a prayer we prayed every time we set out on a trip, which was often. My childhood was marked by travel and transition so you can know that we prayed this prayer frequently. Every trip was prefaced with a prayer that included a little request for “traveling mercies”. […]

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The Echo Chamber of Social Media

I have been caught in the echo chamber of social media for a long time, but the last few months it has become significantly worse. All around me people rise up, whether on Twitter, Facebook or comments, letting everyone know their strongly held opinions. But nothing is original. Everyone is echoing everyone else. As is usually the case, there are two sides and […]

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The Travelers

“Time was passing like a hand waving from a train I wanted to be on. I hope you never have to think about anything as much as I think about you.” ― Jonathan Safran Foer The picture of the sculpture is so remarkable I think that it cannot be real. It must be a photograph, digitally […]

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Persecution of Christians: Real and Stable

I speak up for refugees, immigrants, and Muslims on this blog. It’s right that I do so. I see, read, and hear fear about all of these groups from a variety of people.  But today, I am speaking up for those from my own faith tradition who face persecution: Christians.  An organization called Open Doors […]

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Loneliness and the Jesus Prayer 

I lay on my back in a sterile room, a fancy xray machine above and around me. I am with complete strangers, entrusting myself to their care and expertise. The burgundy hospital gown I wear is a shapeless piece of cloth, fashioned not for beauty but for practicality. I am alone and I feel vulnerable. […]

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A Life Overseas – To the One Who is Left Behind

Hi Readers! I was at A Life Overseas yesterday writing to those who are left behind. You may have already seen a first version of this post a couple of years ago, but if not I would love it if you joined me! “You can kiss your family and friends good-bye and put miles between […]

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On Death and Living in the Moment

Today’s post is from my daughter-in-law Lauren. She is amazing and I love her words in this piece. You can read more about her work here. Thanks for reading! New Years Eve, four years ago.  It was 9 days before my dad died, but we didn’t know that then. Cancer doesn’t give you a timeline. […]

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The Holy Experience of Watching Les Miserables

Last week we watched the Tom Hooper production of Les Misérables. We have all seen it live (in London, no less!) but I believe that the next best thing to a live performance is this movie. I cannot see Les Misérables without crying. The story,full of redemption and grace, is timeless. For those who don’t know the story, […]

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Quotes on “Third Culture Kids”

The study of the third culture kid perspective is not static. Every year, new information and quotes can be found. I’ve compiled this short list of TCK quotes for you today. There are many, many more – but these are some that I have gathered or written the past few years. Please add to this […]

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2017 – Making All Things New

A couple of years ago, there was a show on television called Rehab Addict. It’s not what you may think from the title. It’s about a woman who takes old, dilapidated houses and rehabilitates them, makes them fresh and beautiful, ready to be lived in again. In her words, she is “addicted to rehab,” the […]

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A Psalm for 2016

A Psalm for 2016 by Robynn (Based on Psalm 136 and written at Sister Irene Nowell’s suggestion)  2016 has been a difficult year. The entire globe can testify to this. War, terrorist attacks, the zika virus, political chaos, hacking and doping. Social contracts, that we’ve assumed to be universal, have been shredded. Nothing feels safe or […]

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Isolation or Exposure?

Is God’s protection realized, not through isolation, but through exposure?  We had been in Cairo only 2 weeks when our son Joel slipped and hit his head on the sharp edge of a bed.  He sustained an open cut right above his eye. With Joel screaming and bleeding profusely, we somehow made our way to the […]

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The Eclectic Nativity Set

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I’ve been a little lazy about Christmas this year. I did most of my shopping on the Internet (something I’ve sworn off of in the past). I delegated all the wrapping to our oldest daughter who seemed to actually enjoy it. I let the girls do most of the decorating this year too. We’re leaving […]

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To the Weary Ones

No doubt you are up early. Whether traveling or staying at home, you have things to do, groceries to buy, errands to run, work to finish. You love the season of Advent leading up to Christmas day, but you are so weary. The living room is finally clean, but the last few nights you have […]

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The Sorrow/Joy Continuum

  In an online conversation a couple of months ago, one of the women who is active at A Life Overseas said this: “Sorrow and joy can coexist under the umbrella of grace.”* Moms and dads feel it. One kid rejoices with a a new job, while the other kid loses their livelihood. One daughter has […]

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Foundations & Generations 

We traveled to Los Angeles this weekend for an early Christmas with our son and daughter in law. It was a beautiful weekend with sun and palm trees, the warmer temperatures a welcome change from an arctic freeze. Our East coast cold can chill the bones and the soul.  From eating our fill of great […]

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1500 Olive Trees

Friends, I wrote this back in January, but I know many of us have been hurting over what is going on in Aleppo, so I am reposting. There comes a time on any trip where you feel overwhelmed, when tiredness and lack of control of your surroundings can creep into the journey. I think it […]

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