Weekend Daybook is back: Mother's Day, my graduation, important recommendations for immigration updates and more!

Until Advent (minus some vacation weeks this summer) I’ll share some of the things helping me to worship God, love people, and enjoy beauty each week for you to peruse during your weekend downtime.

(1) photo from this week

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Our friend Jen Thompson, the felting genius, surprised me with this sweet little set for a graduation gift. I CAN’T STOP GIGGLING! Brian and I are going to start using this for all of our profile pics.

Also, they make me think of this…

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I see a whole new way new way to solve marriage conflict.

Thanks, Jen!


(2) new blog posts this week!

  1. Third Sunday of Eastertide: Worthy - Hallelujah! Christ is risen! The celebration continues with the Great Fifty Days called Eastertide. Stay tuned for a variety of celebratory posts here on the blog.

  2. Practice Resurrection with Micah Thompson (Hinesburg, VT) - Speaking of the Thompsons and celebratory posts, here’s the first guest post in a new-and-improved version of the the Practice Resurrection series!


(3) Mother’s Day favorites

Over twenty-seven years in and I’m still learning how to be a mother. I’m learning it never gets easier, but it does get deeper and wider as my capacity for love increases. I’ve said so many times before that I’m learning Jesus stretches out time.

 
Relax. You’ve got time, it’s going to take time.

I know, I know - old ladies have stopped you in the store five trillion times to warn you that the time flies by faster than you can imagine and that you need to make the most of every single moment with your cherubs. And that’s sort of true.

Most true, though, is that Jesus is a redeemer of time. He moves outside of time and space, He returns time and stretches it out in just the right ways so He can save you and your kids. When you read any practical suggestions I have to offer please take your time, consider, pray, laugh, relax.

Put another way, maybe the very, very best advice I have to offer parents is this:

Reject hyper-vigilance, embrace spacious grace.
— from my "Parenting Unrehearsed" series (2012)
 

I’ve been grateful for the increasing reminders over the past few years to invite all women into the blessing of Mother’s Day, and to remember there are many ways to share maternal love (indeed, God is the source of maternal love and makes it available for all men and women to receive and to offer.) I hope we’ll continue to remember this reality in our liturgies and our prayers. At the same time, I also believe there’s a place to give thanks for the mothers who are in the middle of the daily grind of it all. Here’s some of my favorite ways to say “We see you!”

  1. The poem and playlist I keep giving my mom each year: A Poem and A Playlist For My Dear Momma

  2. Maybe my favorite essay ever for Mother’s Day: Fifty Things About My Mother | via Slate

  3. In her 2018 album, By the Way, I Forgive, Brandi Carlile released one of my favorite songs ever reflecting the kind of sacrifice motherhood invites. You can listen to the song here: The Mother. (This song carries even more meaning for me this year as this past December we gave our youngest daughter, Natalie the second middle name Evangeline to celebrate her 21st birthday. Listen to the song to see what I mean.)

 

(4) links to help us continue to celebrate Eastertide

  1. Easter Is Just Getting Started by Andrew Peterson - “I feel in my chest a loosening of tension, a relief that the grieving of Lent is past, the hard-fought self-discipline is behind me, and I can enter the days of work and rest with a subtly euphoric freedom from the thistle and thorn that infests the ground." | via The Rabbit Room

  2. Thou Shalt Celebrate (a book excerpt) by Dallas Willard - "The ‘strong drink’ mentioned here was, shall we say, not exactly sassafras tea!" | via Renovaré

  3. Read from two bloggers going all in for #practiceresurrection2019 - Minding the Gap by Kathy Swaar and Practicing Resurrection 2019 (a post for each of the 50 days)! by Peggy Nagy at Inkblot Life.

  4. Happy As Flowers & Peeps by Gretchen Joanna - "There is not one word for the way so many of us Orthodox feel when we have come to the end of Lent and Holy Week, and are finally standing in church on Pascha night, exhausted, brain dead, dizzy from sleepiness, feeling a little (or a lot) out of whack from keeping strange hours and eating little." | via Gladsome Lights

A photo of Church of the Apostles (Fairfield, CT) on Easter morning, 2019. Thanks to our friend,  Adiel Dominguez , for this photo!

A photo of Church of the Apostles (Fairfield, CT) on Easter morning, 2019. Thanks to our friend, Adiel Dominguez, for this photo!


(5) important links to understand immigration crisis

This week I sent the following letter to approximately three-dozen friends and family who serve the Church as pastors and ordained ministers. Now I’m passing the letter and the links to you.

 
Dear friends and family serving the Body of Christ,

I’m privileged to know personally so many beautiful shepherds of Jesus’ little flock and am taking a bit of a risk to reach out to you as one collective about an issue that matters deeply to me. I understand that your hearts, minds, and calendars are full of weighty matters and that you are called upon daily (hourly?) to respond in love to all sorts of human concern and suffering. For that reason, please don’t feel obligated to reply to this email, but would you, in the coming week, consider reading one news article and subscribing to updates from one Christian engaging the subject of migrants seeking asylum - particularly the women and children fleeing domestic violence - at the U.S. borders (primarily the southern border)?

I’ve been following this conversation for a while and have tried to discern the voices that engage well the intersection of policy, human suffering, current headlines, and our Christian call for allegiance to the Kingdom of Jesus above all others. Sarah Quezada is the voice that’s become one of the most valuable to me at this intersection and, while I’ve shared her updates on social media, I’m trying to learn the most fruitful ways to communicate this sort of information. I’m sure I don’t need to tell you that the fruitfulness of conversation on social media is diminishing, at best.

Since I’m fortunate to know personally (heck, I’m related to half of you receiving this email!) so many of you leading and influencing the Church, I wanted to pass Sarah’s name to you to engage at whatever level you’re able.

Thank you, in advance, for welcoming my request. I hold you each in high regard and pray for us all as we seek to build up the beloved body of Christ in this gnarly world.

Hallelujah! He is risen!
Tamara
— Letter I wrote this past week to pastor and ordained minister friends and family
 
  1. Sarah Quezada: newsletterbookTwitterFB, & IG. If nothing else, subscribe to her newsletter for a brief, but essential weekly round-up of current events at the border.

  2. This recent post from Sarah especially caught my attention: “Collectively, we chose darkness. But the light keeps showing up and breaking through.”

  3. 'Someone Is Always Trying To Kill You': The United States cannot erect a wall and expect women to resign themselves to being slaughtered. An NYT opinion piece by Sonia Nazario The article I'm asking you to read this week (it's a difficult one to read, but I found deeply important in my understanding of the essence of an emergency at the border). 

  4. If you'd like to be encouraged about the way the Church is ministering in Arizona, here's a recent article Sarah shared in her newsletter: Why this Arizona grandmother feels compelled to take in migrants seeking asylum.

  5. One of Plough Publishing’s newest releases reminds us of the legacy of walls - A Book to End All Walls: An Interview with Uk-Bae Lee (not just for children!)


(6) photos from my graduation residency

I'm delighted to let you know that on the last Monday in April I completed my Selah Spiritual Direction certification. Thank you so much for all of the encouragement and support so many of you've offered the past two years. In fact, I couldn't have done it without our community.

I've been grateful to build a small practice with directees and am looking forward to serving a non-profit organization working in a small village in Mexico as a spiritual director available to faculty and staff at the beginning and end of their summer institute. I look forward to beginning one or more spiritual direction groups and possibly adding a retreat in fall 2019 or winter 2020.

I'm eager to invite more directees to my practice so please feel free to share my contact information and web page with your family and friends . There’s a contact form at the bottom of the page to send any questions.

Thank you, again, to all who participated in God's abundant and perfectly-timed gift to us. We're forever grateful.


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1 year ago

My kids were all together in Texas and sent me this photo on Mother’s Day. I love them.


May your weekend include plenty of space to practice resurrection. Hallelujah! He is risen, friends!

p.s. This post may contain affiliate links because I'm trying to be a good steward, and when you buy something through one of these links you don't pay more money, but in some magical twist of capitalism we get a little pocket change. Thanks!