One of my favorite confessions of sin is from a short poem called "Thread," by Dan Chiasson. "I am frayed where it would be highly useful," he writes, "to make a point." Many people, perhaps most, are at least vaguely aware of one of the consequences of human sin.
May 19, 2014
In Jean Thompson’s novel The Year We Left Home, Anita extends an impulsive invitation to a mere acquaintance, Rhonda. Their lives have turned out very differently. Anita enjoys a contented home life with her husband and children, while Rhonda has endured an abusive boyfriend for far too long. So Anita invites Rhonda to her home, and says she can stay as long as she likes. Driving home, Anita contemplates the implications of her sudden act of hospitality.
May 12, 2014
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When fairy tales begin with the familiar phrase “Once upon a time,” they signal a mythical point of departure: the beginning of a great adventure. If Matthew had known this phrase, he might have employed it to introduce the calling of the first disciples, since his version of this story begins with the breathless anticipation of a fairy tale.
January 11, 2005
Gothic cathedral. A gay couple approaches holding hands. “Step aside, please,” say the muscle-bound guards. They speak similar words to an African-American girl, a Hispanic man, a young man in a wheelchair. Then, just as we realize that the two large men are “church bouncers,” the scene fades to black and the tag line reads: “Jesus didn’t turn people away. Neither do we.”
January 11, 2005