Although I began blogging in 2008, this blog moved to Christianity Today last February. It is called "Thin Places" because I hope it is a space dedicated to creating unexpected connections--"places" where heaven and earth touch, where we might glimpse God's presence through grace and kindness and healing. Typically, I write and welcome guest posts related to the intersection of faith, family, and disability. This year, we widened the circle to include what turned out to be a monthlong reflection on race relations, and I have continued to feature posts related to the ongoing tensions--and potential for healing--between black and white Americans. Of the dozens of guest posts that ran this year, the following six represent some of my personal favorites, as well as the top three as far as pageviews:
The history that led us to Ferguson. Why "the unified family of God is the answer to the problem of race in America."
"The American church, plagued by its own racial divisions, offers little in the way of healing and hope. Brothers and sisters, it was never meant to be this way. The unified, interdependent, diverse family of God is designed to model Christ’s love to our broken world and in doing so, collaborate with him in healing our world."
The mother of a child with Down syndrome joins her daughter’s rebellion against hurried living.
"I look in her eyes and wonder. Can I love slowness when it is something I must do, not something I choose to do? Can I welcome the in-between times—and dance through them? On the days of only questions, can Eden's poetry of slowness seep into my waiting?"
Every church makes assumptions. It helps to acknowledge them. Leanring how to live out the Gospel.
"But in allowing some traditions to change and new influences to be introduced, we create a new culture that may welcome the very people who have walked through those open doors and then never returned."
How living out the gospel ideal of reconciled community proved far more difficult, and wonderful, than one pastor ever expected.
"...embrace the uncomfortable. Be willing to endure a song you don’t like or a worship form that seems awkward or out of place. In doing so you may be opening the door for a person to know Christ and to be welcomed in your community that, were in not for your own worship displeasure, would never have felt at home."
Walgreen's new initiative to employ people with disabilities brought God's goodness into the workplace and much more.
"Although the circumstances of our lives differ, I am more convinced than ever that we all underestimate our own abilities in making a difference. All that's needed is for people who want to do good to step forward. Others are waiting join in."
Adoption, brokenness, and grace. Meeting God in the tender moments of life.
"Pain is an invitation and loss isn’t a curse when it peels back the layers over the heart to reveal the hunger buried underneath -- inherent in every human, no matter the circumstances -- for a personal, intimate brush with God."