Here’s an insight into my life. You can find my personal thoughts and creative writing.

Christian Witness

A Reflection on Christian Witness I tried something different this week. I took my children's message from last week and turned it into a devotion on Philippians 3:12-16 for TVprays.org. Rather than posting both, I share the devotion with you here. I hope it gives you a minute to consider the witness of your life. Keep showing up for yourselves and others, even when it gets hard. Keep your heart and mind centered on God's transformative love for…

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All We Love Is All We’ll Take

As I reflect on the passage of time, particularly over these past few months, I am reminded that part of the issue was my misunderstanding. I forgot that I do not own time. How I use time does not prove its worth. Instead, time is a tide in which I live. I am swept up in time and all I truly need is with me at any given moment.

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Home.

Read: Ecclesiastes 1:2-11Vanity of vanities, says the Teacher,vanity of vanities! All is vanity.What do people gain from all the toilat which they toil under the sun?A generation goes, and a generation comes,but the earth remains forever.The sun rises and the sun goes down,and hurries to the place where it rises.The wind blows to the south,and goes around to the north;round and round goes the wind,and on its circuits the wind returns.All streams run to the sea,but the sea…

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Charles Brand Carlson (1946-2018)

Chuck Carlson A.K.A. “Dad,” “PaPa Chuck,” “PaPa Seal,” “Uncle Chuck,” “Pastor Chuck,” “Pasta Chuck,” “Pasta Ravioli” “Pasta Masta,” “the Walrus…”Charles Brand Carlson was born on May 6, 1946 to Kathryn Braithwaite and Anthony Scelza. The world was never the same. When Chuck was 4 years old, he was adopted by Kathryn’s new husband George Carlson, given a new name, and a new start. Chuck was never the same. He often shared how life-changing it was for him to…

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Call the Pebble Dare

I've had some things on my To Do list bearing down on me over the last few weeks. It's all stuff for my dad's memorial service. As I've procrastinated and procrastinated, I've had to admit to myself the nugget of denial that I am living with. The reality has hardened in this flood of grief I swim in. It keeps bumping up to my daily life like an annoying pebble in my shoe saying, "I'm still here. I'm…

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I Think They Call This Grief

"How are you?" When I was 13, my dad almost died right before my eyes. I always preface my reflections on this era with my age because it adds to the drama, but it really does matter. I turned 13 the day my dad was moved from CCU to a "regular" hospital room. And then the rest of my life happened. There was adolescence and there was teenager, young adult and now. There was my daddy and then…

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Where I Am From

I am from wind, from sunglasses, and flip flops. I am from the land of cold ocean waves and sky-scraping treetops. I am from wildflowers, the bright, unexpected spray of poppies. I am from generosity and hard laughter, from Carlsons, Scelzas, Adcocks, McLaughlans, and Braithwaites. I am from loud-mouthed opinions and revolving-door hospitality. From, "You can do anything." And, "You are perfect just as you are." I am from the West, spaghetti and tacos. I am from wanderlust,…

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The Rain is Falling

The rain is falling The candle is lit The tea is brewing and I I am here trying to breathe, to be, to bear to put words to the expanse that grows and growls and billows with each breath. But I am here. I am staying right here. This expanse is not a black hole, but a widening of will to hold on to this world Gd has given me this life of pain and joy these people…

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I called my dad (mostly) every day for a month and here’s what happened

About a month before my dad's birthday, I got this weird idea that I should call him every day. This was a difficult challenge for me. I've gotten used to letting him call me when he misses me, or I'd just wait until I had something to talk about or randomly thought to call them. When I did call, I'd usually call my mom. (No one has a house phone anymore, right?) So, I wasn't doing so well…

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Be Gentle

This is a month that I've been really pushed to be gentle with myself. Myself. The person it has always been hardest for me to be gentle with. And every day I've been faced with a new lesson in it. It is humbling to realize how much I need it... I know there's freedom and grace in this at some point but right now it just feels like a fight to be gentle rather than to beat myself…

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