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I Needed Grace Before Corona and I’ll Need it After, Too

Lately I’ve been doing a lot more phone scrolling than I’d care to admit (but I guess I am admitting it so I must not care that much). And a theme I’ve been seeing a lot of, among other less-savory anxiety-producing ones, is grace. It has surprised me and encouraged me. Some of this pep […]

To My Fellow 2020 “Graduates”: Some Encouragement from My Middle School Diary

Since my abrupt return home from college and relative social isolation, I have oscillated between moments of overwhelming sorrow—and, I’ll admit, a good bit of self-pity—to profound loneliness, to laughter while playing charades with my family, to utter boredom which I usually while away by watching endless videos and memes on my phone. After my […]

Hope Is the Thing With Feathers: Jesus Is a Bad Birdwatcher

“Hope” is the thing with feathers – That perches in the soul – And sings the tune without the words – And never stops – at all – And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard – And sore must be the storm – That could abash the little Bird That kept so many […]

The Hardest Moments Right Now

1. When I know my kids have been on the iPad for too long but I still have work left to do. 2. When my kindergartener gets off of her morning Zoom meeting with her class and is inconsolably sad. 3. At night when I realize I have to do the day all over again. […]

Remembering Sy Sperling — and Your Pastor, Minister, or Priest

A timely suggestion from a pastor friend of Mbird. Pour one out (pluck one out?) for our man Sy Sperling, the greatest theologian of late-night TV ads from the early 90s and late 80s. He died in February at age 78. Don’t remember Sy Sperling? What are you, Gen Z? He was everywhere on TV […]

On Things I Thought I’d Never Say, like God Bless the Internet!

About two weeks ago, Tim Kreider penned a column for Medium entitled, “It’s Time To Admit that the Internet Is Bad For Us.” I read it and nodded along, vigorously. A quarter-century in, [the Internet] does seem to have revolutionized consciousness, in much the same way as did nickel slots or crack. Studies have empirically […]

To the Ends of the House

“Ends of the Earth” I think about traveling To the ends of the earth Across a sea, To another state, Or at least to a different city To share your love Your redemption story Isn’t that what you desire from me? Before I pack my bags to leave In search of excitement and glory You […]

Up All Night With the One Who Never Sleeps

You sure picked a high time to be a pastor, I said to myself. Ugh, you’re telling me. Ever since I was little, I knew that pastoring would be in my future. Being the son and grandson of pastors, you can imagine the inevitable bombardment of questions, usually something like, Are you going to be […]

Things My Grandmothers Taught Me That Are Helping Right Now

It is perfectly acceptable to save .02 ounces of macaroni and cheese in a Cool Whip container with a tin foil top. There’s nothing wrong with constantly having a pound cake in the house. There’s nothing wrong with elastic waisted pants. Children can watch hours of television and still feel loved if you offer them […]


Grateful for this reflection by Grace Leuenberger. Last Friday, I was messaging a colleague about her day. She told me about that morning’s trip to the grocery store, “to pick up some essentials,” she said. “Coffee, milk, bread … But is coffee an essential though!?” she joked. One week later, I scroll through Twitter to […]

The Blessing (in which I begrudgingly admit everything will be alright)

I am what my therapist calls a catastrophizer. I always play out the worst-case scenario in my head. I have done this for as long as I can remember. I used to think that it was just a way of being prudent and planning ahead. I have learned in the past few years that it […]

How to Live in the Shadow of Calamity

Our friend Robin Sloan, who was a part of our Future Issue, wrote an incredible little missive to his email subscribers, whom he lovingly and nerdily dubs the Society of the Double Dagger. Just like a lot of artists confined to home right now, he’s got a lot of ideas for the time at hand—support […]