Forgiving the unforgivable: A conversation with Dawn Eden

For many of you, Dawn Eden needs no introduction. She’s a popular blogger, a former rock journalist, Catholic convert, and author of the bestselling book The Thrill of the Chaste. I recently had the honor of interviewing her for the National Catholic Register, where she spoke for the first time publicly about her own experience as a victim of childhood sexual abuse. When I talked with her for that interview, I was overwhelmed by the amount of wisdom Dawn has gained on the subjects of healing and forgiveness. It was immediately clear that there... Read More

Rock the present moment

One of the topics I’ve struggled with since the beginning of my conversion is the role of ambition in the Christian life. I have an odd personality type that could be described as “mostly extremely lazy, with occasional flashes of Type A behavior.” In other words, by default I sit on the couch and do nothing; but when I do decide to get up from the couch, I make it worth my while. I think this is why the concept of being ambitious is a tricky one for me: It’s easy for me to be tempted to do nothing and call it virtue, passing... Read More

What a spiritual director and an MBA taught me about being overwhelmed

I have a personality type that leads me to feel overwhelmed a lot. I’m ambitious but lazy; I have a latent perfectionist streak that comes out at unexpected times; I’m an Olympian procrastinator; and I’m so non-confrontational that I often find myself saying “Yes, I’d love to help with that” when what I should be saying is, “I CANNOT EVEN FIND TIME TO BRUSH MY HAIR RIGHT NOW, LET ALONE SIGN UP FOR ONE MORE FREAKING THING.” Because God looks out for people like me, I’ve had some very wise counsel... Read More

Prayer: Because sometimes you need to be dog-whispered

Back when we had cable, I used to be a big fan of the Dog Whisperer show. I don’t even have a dog, but it was fascinating to see how Cesar Millan could take all these bad dogs and turn them into happy, obedient pets. One of his most common techniques is to pinch a dog quickly on the side of its neck while making a sound that is hard to convey in writing, but goes something like, PRSSSSCHT!!! By mimicking the corrective nip that the top dog in a pack might use to keep his subordinate canines in line, Millan gets the dog’s attention and... Read More

The goal-oriented life

It was my husband who first introduced me to the concept of goal orientation. Before I met him, that kind of thing was completely foreign to me. I lived my life drifting from one whim to the next, with only fleeting thoughts as to how my actions today would impact my life as a whole. Occasionally I might come up with some random idea about what I wanted in the future (e.g. to make a certain amount of money, or to have a certain title on my business card) but even then I didn’t take the time to reflect on whether this goal was truly the best... Read More

Life doesn’t have to be easy to be joyful

Remember my little mention last week that a film crew is coming to capture my every move this Wednesday? My remorse has only grown deeper, my despair more multi-layered, my impending sense of doom more distinct (I now hear the Jaws theme every time I look at that day on the calendar). As of yesterday afternoon, I’d decided that my decision to agree to this must have been a subconscious attempt to get in the Guinness Book of World Records for the WORST IDEA EVER category. Yesterday evening I caught a glimpse of my face in the mirror, and my... Read More

My life changing diapers

Now that I’m visibly pregnant, I get asked more and more often for a detailed plan of how many more children I’ll have and when I’ll be “done.” Much of the time, “Congratulations” is swiftly followed by one of the following questions: “So, is this the last one?” “How many more are you going to have?!” “When are you going to be done?” These are usually well-intended statements, expressed out of a concern for me. An old friend whose youngest just started kindergarten said... Read More

The secret to a life of YES

A while back I posted a link to this fantastic post by Carrien, in which she suggests that the secret to an extraordinary life is simply saying YES. The whole thing is well worth reading, but here’s an excerpt: That got me thinking about other people I admire. I found the same theme. They said yes, when they could have said no. […] In 1976, at the age of 60, a woman by the name of Pauline Fell began walking the streets in the downtown eastside of Vancouver. Although she was a new Christian she asked God what He wanted her to do with... Read More

Explore your doubts, but do so in peace

I hear from a lot of people who fear they’re losing their faith. They’ve had some doubts come to mind that they just can’t seem to get past, and they’re rattled to the core to think that their entire belief system just might be false. Since I’ve spent so much time in the spiritual desert,┬áthis is a topic near and dear to my heart. I’ve spent a long time thinking and praying about how to respond to people in this difficult situation, and thought I would share my answer, which has two key parts, in case it’s... Read More

The story of a beautiful Mass

After all the austerity of Lent, I was really looking forward to experiencing the beauty of the Easter Mass this morning. I couldn’t wait to behold the visual feast of our breathtaking sanctuary filled with freshly cut white flowers, rich white and gold fabrics, and other decorations that symbolize a season of life and hope. I looked forward to settling into the comfort of our usual pew and listen to the choir proclaim joyful hymns that they’d undoubtedly perfected over weeks of practice. But as we neared the church and policemen in... Read More

« Previous PageNext Page »