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Direct Experience

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Braver/Wiser

  • By Aisha Ansano
    What happened in Charlottesville is nothing new. We know how to fight it, and it is done in community—wherever we can find it. Spirit that runs through us all, remind me to look up, to reach out, to find those doing this work alongside me and join them.
  • By Becky Brooks
    Someone had broken into our garage. We picked our way through the space, storage tubs strewn about, ready to make a list of what was missing: two wool sweaters and half a tent. Someone was suffering a misfortune here, but it wasn’t us.
  • By Seanan R. Holland
    In the moment that I switched to “teacher mode,” I recalled moments in which I had inadvertently said ungracious things. I was fortunate enough to have professors, ministers, and friends illuminate my clumsiness for me. They did so in a way that was gracious enough that it increased my appreciation and respect for them, and clear enough that I will never forget the teaching.
  • By Aisha Ansano
    Our souls and minds need sustenance as much as our physical bodies. May we delight in the ways we find to provide this nourishment to our whole selves.
  • By Elea Kemler
    My son, Caleb, and I went to Starbucks on a recent Saturday morning. We often do this as a prelude to the weekly grocery shopping. It...
  • By DeReau K. Farrar
    There’s something deeply moving for me about the idea of a love that will always have my back. "Always"—meaning unconditionally and without hesitation. And there's something deeply jarring for me about the idea that, despite my most earnest hopes, my best intentions and desires for others may have interrupted the flow of love from me to them.
  • By Yuri Yamamoto
    For almost thirty years after coming to the United States, I didn't fully understand the cultural cues around me. Initially, this gave me the false sense of liberation. I often interpreted uncomfortable situations to be my fault, as an ignorant immigrant. Trying hard to assimilate, I unconsciously suppressed what came naturally to me.
  • By Tim Atkins
    The most important lesson pottery has taught me is to not be attached to the final product. Every time I’ve put a piece in to the kiln with a certain expectation of how it’ll come out, I’ve been disappointed. When I don’t much care in the end how it looks, I end up pleasantly surprised. I can’t be attached to those final outcomes — the process matters more than the product.
  • By Teresa Honey Youngblood
    Light We Seek, wherever I am on the journey toward wholeness for all of us—that is, toward racial equality—help me to forgive myself and others for missteps and missed opportunities, and guide my efforts to build up the relationships where love, justice, and understanding grow.
  • By Becky Brooks
    What DO we do in the face of evil? Anything. Everything. Pray, protest, bake, hug, grieve, wail, laugh, explain, linger, research, fight, cry. What we absolutely must not do is ignore it.
  • By Sean Parker Dennison
    I am not alone. I don’t have to face the world alone and I don’t have to fix the world alone. When I need hope, I find it in on the faces of my people. All we need is hope... and for that, we have each other.
  • By Daniel Gregoire
    As a born traveler, I love the novelty of discovering a familiar thing in a new setting. And what’s more familiar than a white clapboard...
  • By Marisol Caballero
    How is it that I, a minister and known skeptic, am able to a) not run around screaming that the sky is falling and, b) do my job at all?...
  • By Erika A. Hewitt
    People are in pain all around us, all of the time. How can we be companions to those in pain, and bear witness, so that pain can be...
  • By Robin Tanner
    "Uh, where’s the booth?” Having been raised by a Christian-on-the-periphery, New Age mom and a Buddhist-leaning dad, I was a little...
  • By Sean Parker Dennison
    I’ve been doing a lot of guest preaching lately and it’s always a little awkward. I often don’t know how the congregation is used to doing...
  • By Maureen Killoran
    With a name like mine, it’s easy to guess I’m Irish. My forebears were among the millions who struggled to escape Ireland’s disastrous...
  • By Jake Morrill
    For twelve years, Daisy has been the best dog any person could love. But last week, when she disappeared into the woods? That wasn’t what I...
  • By Robin Tanner
    I had finally begun to relax—a bit. We were en route to Pennsylvania. My friend, a formal part of our “framily,” was visiting. We decided a...
  • By Sean Parker Dennison
    About six months ago, I got a new tattoo. It’s a lit match on my right wrist, added to an arm full of paintbrushes, pens and other art...
  • By Erika A. Hewitt
    When I picked up her call, Kira’s voice was thick with tears. Kira, one of my best friends, is the mother of 4-year old twins, working full...
  • By Teresa Honey Youngblood
    We sat on the back steps watching transfixed as hundreds of rust-red spiders, big as thumbs, dropped on strands of silk out of the pecan...
  • By Teresa Honey Youngblood
    “Did that man just strap a gun to his belt?” My 10-year-old squinted, looking across the parking lot of the grocery co-op. I had seen it,...
  • By Daniel Gregoire
    All right voters, it’s election season! We’re down to the remaining candidates, and we are the voters of this country. The question before...
  • By Maureen Killoran
    He was, I am told, just a dog. But who was it that, fresh from the litter, climbed onto my chest, licked my face, and rubbed his pink baby...

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