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Guest Author: 
Carissa Kane

The voice of compassion calls us to reach out and minister to one another. After all, the origin of the word "compassion" is the Latin word "compati" which means, "to suffer with." With the recent spread of a stomach flu that is going around the school system in my town, the word "compassion" instantly conjures a vision of parents caring for their children.

Guest Author: 
Lauren K. Carlson

When I was a child, my family spend many spring vacations visiting the Smoky mountains in Tennessee, USA. To those unfamiliar, our favorite destination offered a combination of natural beauty, and what my father affectionately referred to as, “tourist traps.” The tourist traps took advantage of families vacationing together in the mountains, offering overpriced entertainment in the form of old-time photos, arcades, haunted houses, oddity-museums, and gift shops. I’ll never forget my first encounter with a stereogram (a 3D image hidden inside another image). Popular in the late nineties, these pictures offered a seemingly magical optical experience for the viewer. Stare long enough at a repetitive and colorful pattern and eventually an altogether different picture would emerge.

Guest Author: 
Jean Wise

Miriam, Moses, Aaron, and all the Hebrews left Egypt in a hurry. They could only take a few precious possessions with them. Amid the chaos of a sudden escape, being chased by the Egyptian army, they headed towards the Promised Land. Dusty bedlam, unknown future, and fear pursuing them.

God interceded and the waters crushed Pharaoh’s horses and chariots. The Hebrews arrived safely on the other side of the sea and began their journey into a new future.

Do you know what Miriam and the women did next? They brought out their tambourines.

“Then Miriam the prophet, Aaron’s sister, took a tambourine and led all the women as they played their tambourines and danced.”

—Exodus 15:20

Guest Author: 
Tessi Rickabaugh

Lately, I've been thinking a lot about what it means to be honest. Having never been prone to lying, it's easy to consider myself an honest person. Perhaps that's why I’ve always been fascinated to watch other people interact with the truth.

Guest Author: 
Christina Walker


Veronese, Paolo. The Feast in the House of Levi. n.p., 1573. Oil on canvas.

On 18 July 1573, Paolo Veronese was called before the Roman Catholic Inquisition because he had created a massive painting for the San Giovanni é Paolo monastery titled, Last Supper of Jesus Christ with His Disciples in the House of Simon. A quick glance reveals that it’s very different from other Last Supper paintings. Concerned, the authorities called Paolo in to explain his picture. Here’s an excerpt from the proceedings.

Guest Author: 
Linda Labelle

The word “grace” means favour, God’s favour toward us. Grace can be both creative and redemptive. As an unmerited favour from God, grace often leaves us in a posture of astonished amazement and gratefulness.

“How can I make a return to the Lord for all the good he has done for me?”
                 —Psalm 116:12

Guest Author: 
Sarah Cledwyn

“We spend a lot of time looking for happiness when the world right around us is full of wonder.”
                     —Thich Nhat Hanh, Silence

I recently read, “The Serpent and the Dove: Wisdom for Navigating the Future,” an article that appeared on the Huffington Post about spiritual activism. In this article, it stated how important it is to be a truth teller, make circles of connection, and prepare yourself with spiritual practice to face the tireless work of standing in the face of injustice. The end of the article reminded readers that in order to sustain ourselves for this lifelong work, we must regularly engage in experiences of joy and beauty.

Guest Author: 
Janice Lynne Lundy

We all know patience is a virtue and one that is not particularly easy to cultivate. The current US culture, for the most part, is fast-paced and pressure-filled. Rapid-fire responses, productivity, and achievement are valued. Rarely do we give voice and praise to what is measured and slow.

Impatience is a disadvantage when it comes to our spiritual lives. As spiritual companions, we witness this firsthand in ourselves and in others. We may long to possess a saint-like inner landscape. We may become harsh and judgmental with ourselves when we do not make the spiritual strides we’d hoped.

Guest Author: 
Linda Labelle

In his book, Awe: The Delights and Dangers of Our Eleventh Emotion, neuropsychologist Dr. Paul Pearsall defines awe as an "overwhelming and bewildering sense of connection with a startling universe that is usually far beyond the narrow band of our consciousness.”

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