What’s that Smell?

When I was a boy, I thought my grandmother smelled like the prettiest lady in the world. She came from the day when a lady didn’t leave the house without a proper dress, handbag, hat, and gloves. To this day when I smell a certain perfume, I am immediately transported back in time to walking hand in hand with my grandmother. But that makes sense, because the sense of smell is one…

Tripping over Myself

The news is grim as nations near and far discuss military action in response to the civil war raging in Syria. The US talks of “going it alone” as the British Parliament votes “no” on intervention at this time. Israelis gather gas masks for their families to prepare for retaliatory strikes in the event of any missile attack on Damascus. And Egypt and surrounding Arab countries debate the political fallout in the…

Life and Death Choices

I learned a new word today: insouciant. It means “showing a casual lack of concern; indifferent.” I was reading an article from The Telegraph, a paper out of Britain, concerning the economic impact of emerging markets on the world economy. Heady stuff! And most of which I simply didn’t understand. But I was intrigued with the word “insouciant.” It seemed to capture the attitude of the moment in our pop culture society.…

Opportunity AND Opposition

Let’s see; thinking of things that go great together – ham and eggs, peanut butter and jelly, Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, Tom and Jerry, a crisps, cool morning and a warm cup of coffee, bacon and, well more bacon! OK, so that’s a bit silly, but there are some things in life that simply always go together. It is understanding the power of these pairings that help us see deeper into…

The Tyranny of the Urgent

Ever heard this phrase before: “The tyranny of the urgent”? I read a quote from someone that said “stress makes you believe everything has to happen right now, but faith allows you to trust in God’s timing.” It never ceases to amaze me to see the frenzied activities of modern life. But it does no good to complain about the pace of our lives if we are unwilling to look deeply into…

Hold On

Platitudes can be absolutely infuriating when you are in pain. And, usually, a person in pain hears things like “Oh, just trust God” or “into each life a little rain must fall” as uncaring dismissals of their very real heartache. To be sure, most folks mean well, but deep in their own hearts they are afraid of getting too close to pain lest it capture them. Let’s face it, folks avoid pain.…

I Want…

Someone once said that God has four answers to our prayers: “Yes”, “No”, “Wait a while”, and “You’ve got to be kidding me!” When I think of our requests we make of God, I find my own requests break down into a few categories – Personal needs, Family concerns, Parish concerns, and Hopes and Fears. But one of the blessings of being Orthodox is that the wise prayers preserved in the Faith…

That’s Not Fair!

“That’s not fair!” My daughter was quite upset over what she perceived to be a bigger piece of cake given to her sister. The depth of indignant and obvious heartfelt wound was unmistakable in the tone of her voice, her crossed arms, and the tears welling in her eyes. She was righteously fighting for what was “fair.” She would accept nothing less than absolute equality so as to affirm her equal status…

Connections That Redeem!

I confess to being both addicted and often overwhelmed by daily news headlines. I am an information junkie and have my daily routine of reading different sites and news aggregators that (I hope) keep me informed about my world. From politics to disasters, to cultural and social trends, to even local news events, I find it both informative and instructive to learn about my world. After all, I am called to be…

Judge Yourself

There seems to be something of a cottage industry about what to eat nowadays. I keep hearing about going “gluten free,” or “no white foods.” Friends tell me that “processed” foods are poison. And to make sure my fruits and vegetables are “organic.” I am also warned about “antibiotics” in my poultry and meat produces and to look for “free range” chicken. It seems like a full time job just keeping up…