Beyond thank you

What is it about the nature of human gratitude that propels us to make offerings and manifest our feeling in the material world? Why do we tend to create and extend more goodness to others as a way to express our appreciation? Lately, I am marveling in the mystery of human goodness and how itContinue reading “Beyond thank you”

Lent’s inevitable disappointment and the constant turn to God

Praying with Fr. James’ Martin SJ’s Examen app recently, I heard the words, “Lent is drawing to a close. For Christians, that means not only is there some anticipation for the celebration of Easter, but also some inevitable disappointment about your Lenten spiritual practices …” “Inevitable disappointment.” The words froze me still. And completely validatedContinue reading “Lent’s inevitable disappointment and the constant turn to God”

Groaning and gratitude

I am wide-awake in a dark hospital room. I survived a gruesome hiking accident that left me bloody and alone in the bottom of a ravine, but I’ve been told that I’ll have reconstructive jaw surgery the next day. My family and Franciscan sisters have gone home to sleep for the rest of the night.Continue reading “Groaning and gratitude”

Thanks for giving, not shopping

Happy Thanksgiving! During this time when we pause to give thanks in the USA, I take this Scripture seriously: In all circumstances give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus. –1 Thessalonians 5:18 But, the truth is, gratitude is only some of what is stirring in my heart. IContinue reading “Thanks for giving, not shopping”

For the good of the guild

In a few of the less-productive minutes of my day, I play an online Star Wars game on my phone. I have some beloved characters which I attempt to constantly level up: by completing certain challenges, I can make my characters faster and stronger. In the game world I am part of a guild—a groupContinue reading “For the good of the guild”

The joy of receiving

Jesus observed, “Without me you can do nothing.” Yet we act, for the most part, as though without us God can do nothing …“ ~ Loretta Ross-Gotta Last night I walked into our parish’s “Fiesta de la Virgen de Guadalupe.” It was a rare occasion for me — a church event for which I hadContinue reading “The joy of receiving”

Thanksgiving in the midst of this mess

“It’s getting ugly!” “Society is starting to collapse!” One might be tempted to scream and cry when the headlines are scanned; when turmoil bubbles up and splashes upon any sense of security and comfort that has been shielding our privileged lives. The mess of injustice can burn us or it can mobilize us to be whoContinue reading “Thanksgiving in the midst of this mess”

Challenged to trust in Mystery

Yesterday I finished packing up my classroom. A somber weight pressed upon my shoulders as I cleaned out my desk, dusted shelves and put books and picture frames in boxes. In the silence I prayed in gratitude for the room that has held so much life and energy for me during the past four years.Continue reading “Challenged to trust in Mystery”

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””

Thanksgiving for Messy Jesus Business’ 5th Birthday!

It is amazing to me that it is nearly Messy Jesus Business‘ 5th Birthday! Thanks be to God that I listened to the encouragement of my community and friends to start a blog about living the Gospel and we’re still going strong. I am in awe, really, upon reflection on all the waves that MJBContinue reading “Thanksgiving for Messy Jesus Business’ 5th Birthday!”