It’s Okay to be Gray

She sat across the table from me, and paused briefly for a bite of salad. She had just delivered The Speech, with all the resoluteness, passion and fire that comes with it. It was not the first time I’d heard The Speech; I’ve encountered versions of it my whole life. I have heard these words […]

The Psalmist’s Voice

By Naomi Pattison-Williams | Twitter: @NaomiWilliams87 I have a fair-weather relationship with the Psalmist. Oh, we have long sung in unison, My lips accustomed to the rhythm of Dwelling in the house of the Lord forever; Being led to green pastures; Lifting my eyes to the mountains; and Finding refuge under the wings of the Almighty. But they […]

Redefining Terms

When I was a little girl, faithfully attending Sunday school each week, we had a little saying that went like this: “Jesus, Others and You—that’s how you spell JOY.” I inhaled that sentiment like it was the sweetest of perfumes. YES! We should always be last on the list, giving ourselves away to Jesus and to other people. That’s […]

Confronting Sarah

Hagar is misunderstood. And misrepresented. Her outline is sketched in contrast to Sarah, Abraham’s wife and would-be matriarch of Israel. In Sarah’s shadow, Hagar is a slave girl from Egypt who caters to her whims. But she also serves at her point of deepest woe—barrenness that denies her the glory of a child, the respect […]

Fighting Words

Jesus is Lord! I’ve been singing this since I learned my first praise song under the wing of Mary at Saint Nicholas Church. Those around me sang it with a triumphant yawp. We’d summon our religious fervor and pierce the sky with our declaration about God who reigned supreme. We stood exuberant in our praise. […]