Posts Tagged: "Parker Palmer"

I told her to put on some good music and turn it up loud.

Thankful Notes (#240)

A young woman in our church has been volunteering quite a bit lately because the restaurant she works at is temporarily closed due to the pandemic. Today she arrived first thing in the morning and spent hours and hours into the afternoon organizing our Food Bank and putting together bags of groceries.

There’s a local writer who I enjoy following on Twitter… today she said:

“One thing you learn about in crisis is who cares about just themselves and who cares for others.

It’s interesting to see who leverages petty grievances to generate outrage, versus the holy multitude shopping for the elderly, sewing masks, operating food banks, working overtime, cooking free meals, volunteering for spiritual support, donating blood, working on start-up projects, coordinating shop local campaigns, feeding medical staff, funding grants, reducing rent, etc.

I’ve watched a church distributing Amazon Fresh donations to hundreds of low-income families this week. An unemployed friend donating food and PPE supplies to seniors. Meals delivered to a nurse. Lunch for a man with no family. Groceries sent to a home after a virus death.

Daily I’m amazed to see such acts of generosity and service, everywhere.”

I agree. Pressure reveals what’s really inside us.

And I am so thankful for those who are stepping up and offering themselves and their resources to make life a little better for others.

This past weekend, between the… Read More

Sunday Shout Out: Parker Palmer On The Gift Of Presence & The Perils Of Advice

On Sundays, I like to give a shout out and share something (generally a blog post, story, or video) that spoke to me. The piece I want to share today is by Parker Palmer…

parker j palmer

When my mother went into a nursing home not long before she died, my wife and I were told that, for a modest increase in the monthly fee, the staff would provide a few extra services to improve her quality of life. We gladly paid, grateful that we could afford it.

Now in our mid-seventies, my wife and I have no imminent need for assisted living or nursing care. But the house we live in is, by definition, a two-person residential facility for the aging. Here at what we fondly call The Home, it’s not uncommon for one of us to try “improve” the other’s quality of life by offering “extra services.”

Unfortunately, those services often take the form of advice.

A few years ago, my wife gave me some advice that struck me as — how shall I say? — superfluous. Remembering our experience with my mother, I said, “Could I pay a little less this month?” To this day, that line gives us a chance to laugh instead of getting defensive when one of us attempts, as both of us do now and then, to give the other unsolicited and unwanted “help.”

Advice-giving comes naturally to our species, and is mostly done with good intent. But in my experience, the driver behind a lot of advice has as much to do with… Read More

God as the Stranger

- - Life With God, Uncategorized

The theme of welcoming the stranger can be seen throughout Scripture. Abraham and Sarah welcomed three traveling strangers, offering them hospitality and friendship, a place to rest and to eat. When Jesus was born, those who celebrated and visited and brought gifts were strangers. In the story of the Good Samaritan, the wounded man is helped, not by his own people, but by a stranger—a despised Samaritan.

“With the stranger lies surprise, new possibility, contact with that part of God and reality that we have never experienced before.” —Ronald Rolheiser

Parker Palmer, in his book The Company of Strangers says…

The role of the stranger in our lives is… Read More