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Extra Grace Required - Our Blog

Samadhi - Amazing Grace

When we've been here ten thousand years.
Bright shining as the sun,
We've no less days to sing God's praise
Then when we'd first begun."

Amazing Grace by John Newton, Verse 4

My beloved mother died from cancer in the living room of our Victorian farm house surrounded by her family, having been taken out of the hospital to die at home. In the minutes after her death I fled to the fields behind our barn, unable to stay in the same room with her lifeless body and my family members’ cries. My sister followed me. Stunned with grief I squatted next to my sister, my gaze fixed on the dirt, the detritus of the harvested row crop, stretching before us. How long we were there, I don’t remember, but long enough for my attention to be caught by the airy movement of a small yellow butterfly nearby. As I mindlessly watched the little insect flit around me, I noticed that it wasn’t going away. As I raised my head I noticed another butterfly, and then another, and another, until my vision widened and I saw a company of butterflies, seeming to dance around my sister and me. I found myself softly smiling with recognition, ‘Hey Mom’, I thought, and KNEW that she was well.  Read More 

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EGR: Creating Grace Space

Have you wondered why we named our book’s blog, Extra Grace Required? Here is the back-story. In my first year as an ordained pastor, I found myself shocked one day by a tirade from one of our church's most faithful and supportive members. The topic of his ire is not important, that anybody could say the things he said to anyone, let alone a group of pastors and church members who had walked with him through many tough situations, left me speechless. All I could do was pause and breathe. The war within me was: 1) should I respond with my well honed psych nurse voice, 2) should I default to my Welsh/English upbringing and not respond in kind, or 3) should I dig deeper for the pastoral voice? While I was sorting through my options, the man stomped away and the lead pastor standing next to me simply smiled and said, “ Well that was an eager situation.” Not understanding what he meant I looked at him with a quizzical expression and he explained, “ Extra Grace Required.”  Read More 

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