I am Grateful

Julia and I kiss Anna after her first communion.

Photo: Olga Burgess

It’s been a very busy and very emotional week, and as it comes to a close I have a lot to be grateful for.

I am grateful that Anna received the Body and Blood of Jesus for the first time in the Blessed Sacrament of the Eucharist.

I am grateful that Anna’s Godparents could make the drive up from Sacramento for her First Communion Mass on Saturday, and that we got to spend the day with them.

I am grateful that Julia’s “medical procedure” was successful, and that—following her recovery—she will free from the chronic pain that she has suffered with for the last year or so. (Out of respect for her privacy, that’s all I am saying.)

I am grateful for all those who have prayed for her and continue to pray for her recovery.

I am grateful that the dark cloud that has hung over my own head for the last year may finally be receding. I am grateful for those who have helped. (Out of respect for my own privacy, that’s all I am saying.)

I am grateful that we have people to turn to when we are in need.

I am grateful that Julia’s mom is close by and always willing to help.

I am grateful that Anna is happy at school, and she has a teacher who cares enough to both challenge and support her.

I am grateful to live in one of the most beautiful places in the country—even when it rains.

I am grateful to God for every blessing in my life.

Five Minute Friday



Paolo Veronese, The Crucifixion (16 Century)

Today, he is pierced for our transgressions.

Today, is is crushed for our iniquities.

Today, the punishment that brings us peace is placed upon him.

Today, by his wounds, we are healed.

We are the ones that hurt him, the ones that put him on the cross, and yet he forgives us, and in his hurt he heals us.

He dies for us out of love for us, and his love is the glue that repairs our brokenness.

Water and blood, flowing from his side, filling and binding every wound, every break, and every crack that sin ever opened. Closing them and healing them forever.

For in the midst of death, we are in life. The tomb cannot contain him, and at Easter we shall be made new.

Today, I know that my Redeemer lives!

M. Grunewald Resurrection

Matthias Grünewald, Resurrection (c. 1510-15)

For he is the Resurrection and the Life.

Five Minute Friday


Broken and Whole

Bowl repaired with gold laquer

Kintsukuroi (Photo via Google Image Search)

I broke my arm when I was twenty-one years old. I was playing flag football on a muddy field when I fell awkwardly and snapped my right humerus (upper-arm bone) at its midpoint. It was the most intense physical pain I’d ever experienced.

The bone healed in time, but now—over twenty-five years later—I have a bump in the middle of my right upper arm that always reminds me of that day and that injury.

We break and we heal, but we carry the scars with us for the rest of our lives.

We are like kintsukuroi (or kintsugi), the Japanese art of repairing pottery with gold lacquer. Like kintsukuroi, we are both broken and whole, and our cracks are both visible and beautiful.

For they are the record of our lives.

Five Minute Friday