This post appeared in a series on “The Need is the Call” responding to the question: What if I can’t find a way to use my gifts? When I dump out the 500 pieces of a new puzzle, the colors and shapes all jumble together. All the pieces are there but the picture those piecesContinue reading “Just a few extras”
Author Archives: jencoito
A Flower That Doesn’t Die
The Passion was not just a symbolic grief this year. We lost my grandmother on Tuesday of Holy Week. Her feisty spirit didn’t always make her the easiest person to get along with. Despite my grudges or issues with her, my children loved her just as she was. Their memories are of the fizzy drinksContinue reading “A Flower That Doesn’t Die”
When It Rains, It Pours
Wednesday of the Third Week of Lent “I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. Amen, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or the smallest part of a letter will pass from the law, until all things have taken place.” – Matthew 5:17-18 I surveyed theContinue reading “When It Rains, It Pours”
Failing at Flossing… and Other Exercises in Humility
Wednesday in the Second Week of Lent There are very few degrees of shame that surpass a parent at the pediatric dentist office. Of course we brush twice a day, flossing on the other hand…. I know they need more help but some mornings we barely make it out of the house with both shoesContinue reading “Failing at Flossing… and Other Exercises in Humility”
Warts and All
Thursday in the First Week of Lent “On the day I cried out, you answered; you strengthened my spirit.” Psalm 138:3 “When I wake up in the morning, maybe God will have taken all my warts away.” My six-year-old Clare has had this same prayer for months. Every few days she repeats her hopeful plea,Continue reading “Warts and All”
“I’m holding down the sand!” My daughter stamped down the shifting beach sand with all her might, trying to keep the waves from pulling it away. Her desperate attempts to contain the earth beneath her feet has become an image of my own desire for control. I struggle to analyze and understand, to force clarityContinue reading “Resisting Forgiveness”
“Then you shall be radiant at what you see, your heart shall throb and overflow, for the riches of the sea shall be emptied out before you, the wealth of nations shall be brought to you.” Isaiah 60:4-5 I didn’t expect to cry as soon as I pulled into the city limits. I was excitedContinue reading “Sacred Souvenirs”
“Give this to the Sisters to buy fruits and vegetables for their children in the orphanage.” My 6-year-old pressed the contents of her piggy bank, all 67 cents, into my hands. Our youngest son’s godmother had been on a two month sabbatical: teaching and leading retreats for her fellow Sisters in Africa. Each week theContinue reading “Contagious Generosity”
Decorating for Christmas with three children is not the idyllic scene you see portrayed in the Hallmark Channel movies. The festive tunes playing in the background were interspersed with fights over who got to hang the next ornament, the positioning of the nativity figures, and the shattering of Christmas dishes as the toddler decided to unpack that box. Between the cleaning, unpacking, decorating, and reboxing the wrappings, Christmas decorating was an all day affair. I look around and the ornaments are heavily clustered in the 6-year-old eye level area of the tree. Our nativities have Nutcrackers and Santa Pez mixed in with them. No one is going to submit my living room for any prizes or visit it on a holiday home tour.
What Makes You Real?
What makes you real? Our third grader got this question wrong on his Velveteen Rabbit quiz last week, which prompted me to look up the childhood classic as we prepared for the end of book test. What makes you real? According to the wise old rocking horse in The Velveteen Rabbit: “Real… is a thingContinue reading “What Makes You Real?”