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SheLoves Magazine is a community of women committed to God’s imperatives of love and justice in the world led by Idelette McVicker. Back in the early days when the magazine had just made it’s on-line debut, Idelette invited me to write about spirituality. From there our friendship grew – and so did my role at SheLoves! Now we conspire together, and much of that can be seen on the pages and posts of SheLoves each month. What an amazing group of dangerous women!


{ ShePonders: Wells }
There’s a girl at the well. Any Jewish person would crack a knowing smile – because perched on the horizon is romance. Think of all the encounters at a well that resulted in betrothal – Isaac and Rebekah, Jacob and Rachel, Moses and Zipporah. Consider this an Old Testament meme. Around a well people meet up and marry. Wells were also an essential part of life in arid lands. People would journey to wells to water their livestock. Sojourners sought…
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entering lent
Lent is upon us, dawning tomorrow morning like a slow sunrise. What will come to light for many is that now's the time to let go, step back, even relinquish. Now restraint leads us, as if from behind, to a new destination. The Lenten Season begins with Ash Wednesday. A smear of oil and ash across the forehead to remind us of fragility and yet resurrected possibility, too. It's a season for holding ambiguity and contradictions; less to be more,…
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{ SheLoves Well… really, she does! }
This Valentine’s Day we want to come together, purely and simply for the benefit of our Batwa friends in Bubanza by pooling our resources, so they may have a fresh water well. (Who needs roses and chocolate, if our friends can have water?)   Would you consider asking nine of your friends to stand with you and form a Circle of Grace—each person contributing $10–so we can build this well together? Altogether, we are asking 100 SheLoves friends—yes, you, Beautiful one—to form a giving circle with…
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{ ShePonders: Swords into Plowshares }
Isaiah describes the scene perfectly – people stream up the mountain to Jerusalem seeking the counsel of the Lord and come down with wisdom. The Lord arbitrates between the nations and they decide to beat their swords into plowshares turning weapons into more useful (and peaceful) tools. The upshot of it all - no more armed conflicts, no more war colleges. This is what the prophet imagines it will be like ‘in the days to come.’ Micah entertains the same…
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{ ShePonders: Mary’s Song }
  [caption id="attachment_510" align="alignleft" width="150"] via Creative Commons[/caption] Some moments generate such momentum that song spills out naturally. Right in the middle of Les Miserables I became a gushing spring - singing aloud, waving my arms so caught in the moment and held captive by a Kingdom-size dream. In a unique way song allowed my voice to climb and try to keep pace with my soaring spirit. No wonder Mary turned to song when the angel announced the conception of…
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{ ShePonders: Midwives }
There’s an old Exodus story about some mighty women who defied a king and discovered the power in their hands. Today I honor their memory and sing their praises with a simple retelling. I also want to reclaim their story – which might prove much more challenging but deeply worthwhile for the sake of our world. *** The Hebrews moved into Egypt many years ago when food was scarce and Pharaoh’s granaries were full. They lived a good life -…
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Jesus is the reason for the season (exactly how?)
  ‘Jesus is the reason for the season.’ Growing up in the church and a series of other concentric Christian circles over the years, this is an oft-quoted truism during this season.  Jesus is the reason for Christmas, the reason we celebrate; He is the reason we carve out this holy time on our annual calendar.  Christmas is about Jesus, not about lavish consumption and consumerism.  Absolutely true. And yet… it rings incomplete for me.  Jesus is the reason for…
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home: my broken hallelujah
[caption id="attachment_458" align="aligncenter" width="500"] photo credit: Tina Francis (taken in Burundi, summer 2012)[/caption] Home is my four-letter word. A bicultural life will do that to a person. Born in America and married to a Burundian, my life exists on two continents. I juggle two passports per family member when we travel, own more than a dozen suitcases stuffed in closets both here and there, even my library’s split between shelves thousands of miles apart. You might think bicultural living to…
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{ ShePonders: Emmanuel }
When you attend the local Christmas pageant this year, I doubt King Ahaz will make the cast of familiar characters. But for today we will begin our story with this leader from the pages of Isaiah. King Ahaz finds himself between a rock and a hard place, as two neighboring countries want to oust him from leadership and invade the southern kingdom of Judah. He’s frightened. Isaiah tells him to ‘stand firm in faith.’ But he continues to cower. Next…
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{ ShePonders: Feast }
[caption id="attachment_412" align="alignleft" width="150"] Tina Francis, photo[/caption] Twinkle lights are strung, shining everywhere I look. Glossy food magazines feature holiday tables bursting with roasted meats, savory sides and sweets galore. Discussions now turn to plans for the coming feast days – who will be around the table, what family recipes will be made, how will the celebration take shape this season. As a host, I tend to make a long list of ingredients and a shorter list of guests. I…
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