undocumented immigrant

I Married an Undocumented Immigrant

I knew very little about immigration when I met my husband. I’d grown up in the Bible Belt South, and it always seemed like a faraway issue that didn’t really affect me. I had general ideas that sneaking across the…

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best of times

The Best of Times

They will write books about this era, you know? One hundred years from now historians will write about 2016 and they will write,   It was the worst of times. It was the worst of times.   We are presently…

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friends with a conservative

Friends with a Gun-Lovin’ Conservative

Jason and I have known each other since we were toddlers. We grew up in the same strict, small town, fundamentalist church. We weren’t much more than acquaintances throughout our early years though, having attended different schools. Eventually, Jason transferred…

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Jerry Givens death penalty

Sin, Evil, and Other Ugly Things

Let’s talk about evil. Sometimes folks accuse people who want to abolish the death penalty of being unrealistic, utopian, or oblivious to the fact that evil is real. What do we do with someone who is a threat to society?…

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A photo by Mayur Gala.

The First Day, the Fifty-Fifth Day, and the Turning of the Seasons

It’s the first day of kindergarten for my last child, and he and his older brother walk in front of us down our driveway with backpacks on, roughhousing like tiger cubs. Brandon and I snap the requisite first-day photos and…

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love letter from a millennial

Love Letter from a Millennial

In elementary school, science lessons taught me to pick up and package our plastics, our papers, our cans, and our glass, so I went out into the world on hot summer days with a trash bag to clean out the…

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The Conflict Within

Captain America: Civil War, and what to do when you stand at the edge of a cliff during a violent storm   The character’s name is Vision. Undoubtedly it suggests a mystical, possibly divine insight into the truest nature of…

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The Privilege of the Poor

Find your own Calcutta, Mother Teresa used to say, and in my fervor to become a missionary, I would read that and nod. Find, find, find my own Calcutta, probably somewhere in Africa, most definitely in the 10/40 window, unreached…

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fighting for social justice

Fighting for Social Justice

It’s wrong or right, white or black: there is no gray. It’s either this or that, with no in between: you are for us or against us, there is no fence-post sitting.   This type of thinking isn’t considered cool…

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we have a problem

We Have a Problem

He was a leader in our church and someone I respected. When he showed up at our Young Adult group a few minutes late, I thought little of it. But then he explained his tardiness was the result of being…

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