when we bask in paradox

[Alumnus, Nate Petersen, is hitting the road, continuing a spiritual pilgrimage that he finds best served by hitchhiking. Recently he was interviewed on “Your Story with Melinda.” Among the nuggets he shared was this:]

When we bask in paradox, it’s an opportunity to continue learning. It’s not the end of the road. There is not that certain period at the end of the sentence. It’s more of a … and then we can continue the sentence and build and learn and grow in this wonderful, spiritual experience of life.

I think that what we’re longing for is to be taught a tradition that can help us to live in that tension.

finding sabbath

I’ve known many Christians who say they had to leave the church to discover Sabbath. Indeed, unplugging from a church can have the same effect as unplugging from the Internet or a demanding job. Suddenly the days seem longer, fuller, and more saturated with color. It’s like climbing out of a too-small space and drinking in fresh air again, or like rolling down the windows on an open road and letting the wind wreck your hair. You go on hikes and explore new spiritual practices involving prayer beads and meditation. You talk about how the oaks are your cathedral, the honeysuckles your incense, and the river over the rocks your hymn. You entertain the idea of taking up a new hobby—origami, perhaps, or yoga—and start writing poetry again. This lasts for a good three weeks until one morning you decide to try an episode of Battlestar Galactica on Netflix and the next thing you know, it’s dinnertime and you still haven’t put on a bra. Things can devolve rather quickly.

– Rachel Held Evans, Searching for Sunday