On Gardening and May Day

It is May Day eve, and it is raining hard. For hours, the sky has threatened its downpour, and now it has come. I hear the pelting on the roof and I hear the wind. Inside, I am safe and warm. And tomorrow? Tomorrow is May Day. Tomorrow, the sun will shine. Tomorrow, “the flowers will appear on the earth, for the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the … Read more

Memories of Chicken Gravy and Faith


Fifty-five years ago today my papa went to Heaven.  I was five; he was fifty-seven. When you lose a parent, you want to know more than you yourself can remember.  It  helps if there are others who are willing to share their memories of the person you are grieving. Over the years, I gathered bits and pieces about my father.  Sometimes it happened in unplanned, casual conversations.   Several times I was able to learn … Read more

A Pie for the Deacon’s Wife

cherry my windowsill

You know what amazes me most about this story?  The fact that someone committed herself for a year.  A gesture done once is great.  But a weekly gesture – fifty-two of them?  Now that’s commitment and caring.

I have never forgotten the story, even though I heard it a quarter of a century ago. It was the daughter of the deacon’s wife who shared it with me.  I think you’d like to hear the story, too.

Somewhere in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, there was a country church experiencing conflict.  This church wasn’t much different from any other church because there were people in that church. And where there are people, there is sin.  And with sin comes conflict, resulting in pain, hurt, and anger. It’s a shame to have to say that these things happen, but they do.  

Read moreA Pie for the Deacon’s Wife

A Wall or a Bridge?

The signs How I missed those signs those first few days is beyond me.  Maybe they just hadn’t been there before.  But you can’t miss ’em now.  There are fourteen of them, planted firmly between each flowering pear tree along the driveway. Facing the neighbor, each sign firmly states:  Posted: No Trespassing (and etc.) It’s a pretty place, this road, especially in the spring. But there’s gonna be a damper this year, because where the … Read more

Joy to the World in January

Christmas cheer in January is a special treat when women come to our church and are served a Christmas dinner.  It is a traditional meal of turkey, real mashed potatoes with homemade turkey gravy, baked southern corn pudding, green beans, congealed salad, freshly baked homemade rolls, and apple or pumpkin pie capped with ice cream or cool whip.  Topped with a cup of coffee served in a cheerful Christmas mug, the evening is complete as … Read more