The Meaning of Grace

The Meaning of Grace

I’ve been thinking about the meaning of Grace. I like to capitalize the word when using it regarding an experience coming from God. It’s my way of honoring it, as recognizing it as something sacred. The dictionary doesn’t quite do it justice – “unmerited divine assistance, a state of sanctification enjoyed through divine assistance, mercy, pardon, privilege.” To me, Grace is the sense of calmness or peace that comes to me during moments of crisis. Once I was on a ship, sleeping soundly in the middle of the Caribbean. In the early hours of the morning, I woke to a succession of horn blasts. Jumping out of bed in a panic, I had a vague understanding of what the sound met since three days earlier; I had been forced to participate in a lifeboat drill. At the time, it...

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Turn Friday the 13th into Your Lucky Day

Turn Friday the 13th into Your Lucky Day

No one has any clear explanation as to why Friday the 13th is supposed to be unlucky. There are plenty of theories which stem from bad stuff happening in ancient history, but even that is speculation. Fear of the date seems to be more of a Western phenomenon, which inexplicably grew during the 19th century. The fear is real, however. The condition even has a name; friggatriskaidekaphobia, which is fun to say and makes you sound smart at cocktail parties. Friday the 13th turned out to be pretty lucky for the makers of the Friday the 13th film series, which has grossed over $700 million. It’s also a lucky day for fans of Alfred Hitchcock, Steve Buscemi and Julia Louis-Dreyfus, who all have Friday the 13th birthdays. If the date really bothers you, you’ll be glad to...

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Losing My Religion – How Maya Angelou Saved Me From Post Election Grief

Losing My Religion – How Maya Angelou Saved Me From Post Election Grief

As someone who has a rather tenuous grasp on faith, I find it is tested on a regular basis. It’s as if God gets a kick out of watching my histrionics. I’m at least learning from the pattern though. As soon as I feel like I’ve got it all figured out, something horrible happens to completely rock my world. When it does, my immediate reaction is to shout, “Screw this and screw God! All this magic belief crap is bullshit and I should accept reality. You live, you die, and you become worm food.” My temper tantrum doesn’t alleviate my pain and I’m left to stew in my thoughts. My misery does not lift right away, but eventually, I get tired of wallowing. I begin to consider my options of either changing my circumstances or changing my attitude – often a combination of...

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A Fresh Take on the Empty-Nest

Empty-Nest; the words I’ve been dreading. I’ve been here before. There’s the vicarious thrill of seeing your baby set off on a new adventure mixed with the pain of saying goodbye. My heart physically aches at the thought of my last kid, or even the two before him, heading out the door bound for college. My experience doesn’t ease the pain of this last baby bird flying the coop. The finality of my last child leaving scares me. My child – yes I know there’s wisdom in Khalil Gibran’s words, “Your children are not your children.” It is a beautiful sentiment, but Gibran didn’t even have children. What the hell did he know? I understand the concept that my children are not mine in the sense that I don’t possess them body and soul. But in coming...

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