when christmas is hard: “help”

kathyescobar advent & lent, formation friday, healing, incarnational, spiritual formation 16 Comments

“o God, listen to my cry! hear my prayer! from the ends of the earth, i cry to you for help. when my heart is overwhelmed. lead me to the towering rock of safety, for you are my safe refuge” – psalm 61:1-3, NLT sometimes when i write about how hard life is here at the refuge, i wonder if i’m exaggerating.  then i go through a week like this last one and remember how real it is.  seriously, so many people struggling in different ways, some related to the …

when christmas is hard.

kathyescobar advent & lent, healing, incarnational 15 Comments

i like christmas.  i am not crazy about the commercialism and try to avoid stores at all costs starting from thanksgiving on, but i do love the season.  i love the story of Jesus because of its upside-downness & the wild and wacky ways he entered into the world as God-in-the-flesh.  i love the intentional focus and celebrating each week of advent. at the same time, i deeply respect that it is a time of year where things start to go haywire for a lot of …

pain relief not pain removal

kathyescobar advent & lent, incarnational, jesus is cool, synchroblog 23 Comments

*this post is part of the christmas synchroblog centered on Jesus came: did you get what you expected?  i hope you all had a good christmas. ours was sweet & simple & really nice. i’ve been really unplugged all week and have enjoyed the quiet. * * * * * for advent, i wrote a post about hoping to be open: present, humble, vulnerable this christmas season.  when i look back on it now, just over a month later, it makes me laugh.  vulnerable is definitely …

3, well 4, christmas-y things

kathyescobar advent & lent, incarnational, spiritual formation, the refuge 7 Comments

well here we go, the last few days before christmas.  it was 67 degrees here in colorado yesterday & snowing today!  it has been a really wild & crazy refuge week with several of my most favorite events–serving dinner at joshua station, a beautiful transitional housing program in denver that we love, our 6th annual refuge single moms crazy christmas brunch (with a visit from mrs. claus, in rare form), & our annual refuge christmas dinner celebration together, carols & games & great food together.  a …

it’s a beautiful, messy story.

kathyescobar advent & lent, incarnational, jesus is cool, spiritual formation 25 Comments

i do not like shopping. i do not like crowds. i do not like commercials and all of the nutty emphasis on buying stuff. and i definitely do not like cold december weather. but i do love christmas. i love christmas because i love the christmas story.  i love the wild & crazy way God reveals himself to the world, in a way that most everyone would never expect. i love that angels announced Jesus’ birth first to the the shepherds & the pagans and they …

comfortable in our own skin

kathyescobar ex good christian women, healing, identity, incarnational, jesus is cool, spiritual formation, the carnival in my head 30 Comments

one of the things i’ve always tried to do here is write from my heart. to be as honest as i could.  to not worry about who would think what.  it’s pretty hard to do!  there are so many different tribes out here in online-land with different passions & people & ways-of-living-out-their-faith.  for the past five years, i have always struggled with not fully connecting with any of them. for some folks, i’m not sufficiently theological or liturgical or serious or christian or universalist or denominational …

present, humble, vulnerable.

kathyescobar advent & lent, incarnational, jesus is cool, spiritual formation 18 Comments

* this is part of the second november synchroblog is to celebrate the beginning of the season of advent.  the theme different bloggers are writing on is:  jesus is coming: what are we expecting?   come back & check out the links of other bloggers writing on this topic at the bottom of this post  (they will be added over the next week) and you can go over to christine sine’s blog this month for daily posts centered on this theme, too. * * * * * …

immanuel, God is with us

kathyescobar jesus is cool, spiritual formation 5 Comments

do you ever have those moments where really old worship songs pop into your head?  like out of nowhere?  over 13 years ago at the little sweet church we used to go to in the mountains we sang this song almost every week: Jesus, name above all names beautiful savior, glorious Lo-o-o-rd Immanuel, God is with us blessed redeemer, living word there were times, honestly, when it grated on jose and i’s nerves because they played it so s-l-o-w, but this week it came back to …