Faith

How Do You Find Purpose in Life?

June 9, 2016
Girl Scout troop

When Lev died, I did not have a clue how to “do” widowhood. Books and advice from others were of little help. I looked at other widows in search of role models. Those who had built purposeful, fulfilling new lives encouraged me. If they could do it, so could I. Eventually, I found books that also inspired me—usually memoirs of grief, which told me that …

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Memoirs Help Normalize Grief

May 5, 2016
On My Own

Grief experts agree that widows get too much advice—too many people telling them how to grieve, how long to grieve, when to make decisions, when to move on. What works for one person may not work for another. There is no single right or wrong way to mourn the loss of a spouse. Nevertheless, most books on grief are how-to books written in second-person. Self-help …

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Grief: Step by Step, Day by Day

April 28, 2016

But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint. Isaiah 40:31 This was my first blog, one year ago. It laid the foundation for the story I share with other widows, their families and friends. One hundred fifty-three blogs later, with many …

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Easter Hope: Celebrating Resurrection

March 24, 2016
Horseshoe Bay

Part 1: The Spiritual Aspect of Grief Lev was buried on Maundy Thursday, seven years ago. It seems like yesterday…and a lifetime ago. The approach of Easter is much more a reminder to me of his death/my loss than the calendar date, April 7. While I have written often about those sinkholes called holidays, Easter is not a sinkhole for me, for the resurrection story …

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Two Very Different Dressings + Gravy

November 8, 2015

Yvonne’s Traditional Cornbread Dressing Yvonne York was my housekeeper for almost 15 years. We watched each other’s children grow up, marry and have babies. We buried our husbands. We shared the same heritage, she from Mobile and I from New Orleans–our Baptist faith, our politics and our cooking. And in the process, we formed a deep and abiding friendship that continues to this day. A …

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My Soul Has Found a Resting Place…

August 9, 2015

  Last Sunday I returned to First Congregational Church, a place where my soul feels at home. Perhaps I am simply getting old and nostalgic for the past, reveling in a Norman Rockwell-like Sunday morning scene. I admit that the whole experience of walking up the hill to the church, joining others on the sidewalk along the way, entering this historic building and sitting by …

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Defying Stereotype, Mixing Genre

August 2, 2015

As I scanned the crowd in the Wylie Theatre lobby, looking for a place where I could eat my box lunch, an attractive blonde on a nearby bench made eye contact and gestured that I could squeeze in beside her. I’m not good at striking up conversations with strangers, but we were both attending the DFW Writers Conference, so there were natural conversation starters. While …

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Remembering Elisabeth Elliot

June 18, 2015

Elisabeth Elliot has died, almost 60 years after her husband Jim and four other missionaries died at the hand of the Auca Indians they had come to serve in eastern Ecuador. Her first book, about his death, was transformational for me and for countless other young women who read of her courage and faith. She only grew in faith and wisdom over the decades. What an incredible …

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Content, Whatever the Circumstances

June 11, 2015

Last week, my college friend Henry Holcomb asked, “Any regrets?” when we spent the day together in Pennsylvania. He referred to my big dreams of a New York journalism career, which I walked away from when I met Lev. “No,” I replied without hesitation. “Why not?” he persisted. I told him about my Aunt Ruby and her Bible. When I visualized my mother, the first …

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Bound for My First Writers’ Conference

June 3, 2015

With some fear and trepidation, I am tweaking my manuscript, gathering my papers, picking up my new business cards and heading to Bethlehem, PA, for the Moravian Writers’ Conference. After Christmas, when Reclaiming Joy started looking like a book, I decided I needed to know what a writer really does and how she gets published. Everything I read spoke of the value of attending conferences and workshops, …

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