On parenting, poverty, and privilege

It’s been two months since our family abruptly said goodbye to the mission we were serving in Honduras. We left because our five-year-old daughter came down with dengue fever, a nasty mosquito-borne illness that becomes even nastier if contracted a second time. In someone who has already had the illness, a second exposure can resultContinue reading “On parenting, poverty, and privilege”

Fear, faith and the flu

I am not a germaphobe by nature, but this year’s flu season has me in a tizzy of microbial paranoia. Daily news reports about the severity of this specific flu strain and the extent of the epidemic have fueled my anxiety, as did a recent email from my daughters’ school informing us of confirmed fluContinue reading “Fear, faith and the flu”

Jesus is way cooler than Spider-Man!

“Why is Jesus cooler than Spider-Man?” asked a seventh grader. His question wasn’t completely out of the blue. He, along with dozens of us spending the week at  Flathead Lutheran Bible Camp in northern Montana, had recently learned a new way to proclaim God’s glory: “Jesus is cooler than Spider-Man, KSHHHH*, Spider-Man, KSHHHH*, Spider-Man!”  *DenotesContinue reading “Jesus is way cooler than Spider-Man!”

On practicing Christian hospitality

My husband and I recently made the difficult decision to open our guestroom to a family experiencing homelessness in our community. We heard about a mother, father and their infant who were living on the streets and in dire need of help. A member of my husband’s congregation posted on Facebook that the family, whom sheContinue reading “On practicing Christian hospitality”

Bread, art and a kindergarten heart

  “NO! I HATE this part of the bread! I won’t eat it!” My daughter had just realized that her peanut butter and honey toast was made with an “all-crust” heel piece. To a five-year-old who has never known true crisis, this realization is nothing short of devastating—on par with candy-less valentines and cake batter-scented (but NOT flavored)Continue reading “Bread, art and a kindergarten heart”

Our hidden illness

My  daughter has asthma. People often express their condolences when the subject comes up but—the truth is—it’s really not a big deal. I grew up with asthma, so I was never intimidated by the diagnosis. Thankfully, my daughter’s asthma is well-controlled with daily medication and has (thus far) never caused her any serious issues. ThoughContinue reading “Our hidden illness”

Love as I’ve loved you … OR I WILL TURN THIS MINIVAN AROUND!

As a mother, nothing brings me greater joy than witnessing my daughters’ love for one another. Each time they giggle in mutual delight at a game they’ve invented, insist on “sister snuggles” to begin the day or tenderly care for one another’s “ouchies,” I feel as though they’ve just given me an extravagant gift. NoContinue reading “Love as I’ve loved you … OR I WILL TURN THIS MINIVAN AROUND!”

His church and mine: A love story

“So, you’re Catholic, but you’re married to a Lutheran pastor. How does that work?” I’ve lost track of how many times I’ve been asked this question in my seven years of marriage. Depending upon the inquirer, I have a few canned answers that easily roll off the tongue, but the simplest and most genuine is this: “ByContinue reading “His church and mine: A love story”

Ugandan faith lesson #5: hope

Faith lessons from my Ugandan family Editor’s note: This is the final blog post of a five-part series “Faith lessons from my Ugandan family”  (see lessons #1, #2, #3 and #4) by Messy Jesus Business guest contributor/Rabble Rouser Nicole Steele Wooldridge about her experiences in Mbale, Uganda. More than almost anyone I know, my Ugandan host parentsContinue reading “Ugandan faith lesson #5: hope”

Ugandan faith lesson #4: thank God for every “journey mercy”

Faith lessons from my Ugandan family Editor’s note: This is the fourth blog post in a five-part series “Faith lessons from my Ugandan family”  by Messy Jesus Business guest contributor/Rabble Rouser Nicole Steele Wooldridge about her experiences in Mbale, Uganda (read lessons #1, #2 and #3). Tune in tomorrow to experience the final installment ofContinue reading “Ugandan faith lesson #4: thank God for every “journey mercy””