The Messenger: October

Letter From The Editor

Spending almost every waking moment of my days taking care of two very tiny boys, I have little margin for much else. I barely have time to get my teeth brushed or take care of basic human needs like getting enough sleep or eating more than leftover scraps off a highchair tray.

But I always, always can somehow squeeze enough time out of my day for a good story.

I will, 100% of the time, sacrifice precious sleep to listen to absolutely anything my husband wanted to share with me about his day. I literally delight in hearing his stories about work or friends or the run he went on during his lunch break. (more…)

Fingerprints and Footprints

Some kids played sports growing up; others played video games. My sister and I read. While she leaned toward fantasy and science fiction, I read all the kids’ classics, and we both tore through piles of Regency romances when we were in our early teens. Since my parents weren’t readers themselves, and we weren’t the kind of kids who got into any trouble, no one paid any attention to our pastime. We could read whatever we liked, and we did. (more…)

We Are Not Alone

I may be 33 years old, an older “Millennial,” but I love to read on paper. I subscribe to the paper Seattle Times daily, I tote a heavy paper planner in my purse along with an assortment of pens, and paper books are my most treasured possessions. I lug my leather-bound study Bible to my weekly Bible study, even though the entire text for that day’s lesson could be easily accessed on the phone I keep out in case my son needs me in the Child Care Center. (more…)

The Manner In Which We Journey

I was a voracious reader as a child. Picture an elementary student walking home from school with a copy of Gone with the Wind held open in front of her face, high enough that she could both read and watch for upcoming curbs. Pulling books from decorative tableaus at Marie Calendar’s to keep herself occupied until the food arrived. Sitting in a corner at the family Christmas party with a pile of Time magazines at the age of seven. I was that kid. Reading was my very favorite escape, where I could imagine myself as Pipi Longstocking or Nancy Drew or Anne Shirley – strong and independent, quick to get into trouble and, after some quick thinking, certain to get myself out. I pictured my life as a series of found treasures, solved cases and long walks with Gilbert Blythe – an interesting but predictable life where problems are mere plot twists on the sure path to the storybook ending. (more…)

The Power of Books

When I was a little girl, I had a friend name Ramona. She was much more daring than I was, willing to say things and do things that I was too timid to try. She was so much fun, so I loved being in her presence. I lived vicarious through her mischievous actions which I thought were crazy but I secretly wished I had the nerve to do. Ramona didn’t go to my school or live in my neighborhood or even my state. She lived in Portland, Oregon with her parents and sister Beatrice who outright called her a pest! She was a character in a book but I could so relate to her! She felt like my friend that who was always with me as I started elementary school. (more…)

The Christmas Sweater

My wife and I have several Christmas traditions and one of them is watching the movie, The Holiday. There’s a scene in that movie where Jude Law describes himself, not ashamedly, as “a major weeper.” “A good book, a great film, a birthday card” will bring him to tears. I’m not sure I’m a major weeper, but I’m definitely not ashamed to say I cry, especially when I hear a story or experience a moment where it is apparent to me that the Holy Spirit is truly active. On rare occasion, I have even been moved to such an extent that I do become a “major weeper” and when I reflect on these moments I feel incredibly blessed that I was able to feel the Holy Spirit within me to that extent. (more…)

Don’t Give Up

I started a school in Rwanda when I was 17 years old. What motivated me to start this school was the genocide. So many children lost their parents and were orphans. God spoke to me and told me that I could do something to bring new life.

That’s the way I started the school.

There were many different challenges that wanted to stop me. (more…)

Behind the Scenes – Man Rescues Presbytery From Drowning

That’s the kind of dramatic headline that gets our attention these days, although we might ask, “What kind of a person has a name like Presbytery?”

The headline is correct, though, except the Presbytery mentioned was drowning in red ink, not water and is not a person but a group of Seattle-area Presbyterian churches, including BelPres. The member churches meet on a regular basis, worship together, enjoy community, encourage outreach and mission, and come alongside one another in various ways.

How did our Presbytery survive red ink? (more…)