The Weakest Reed

He will not crush the weakest reed or put out a flickering candle.

October 3, 2014
by Rachel Gustafson
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What do we really mean when we say we must proclaim the truth at all costs?

(Please see the note at the bottom of this post.) Last week, autumn ran a high fever.  I took oddly sweat-prickled walks in an environment that would normally be associated with cr-words like crisp and crunch and crumble, used interchangeably … Continue reading

September 18, 2014
by Rachel Gustafson
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When you’re afraid to hope…

Sometimes, mostly when we’re younger, Hope is an animal of mythical proportions, comprised of features that would not dare, on this planet, to gather together on any single animal that grazes or soars or swims.  We like to hitch ourselves … Continue reading

July 14, 2014
by Rachel Gustafson
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When you find yourself in THAT place. Again. Still. (Or: It’s ok if everything’s not ok)

In the same way any word transforms itself into a virtually indistinguishable collection of lines and curves after having been written over and over again, I’ve begun to wonder what exactly is the meaning of that phrase so often dispensed … Continue reading

June 2, 2014
by Rachel Gustafson
8 Comments

On having faith, being disappointed and how it all just kind of sucks sometimes

When I hear a statement like “It was even better than I could have possibly imagined,” I find myself suspecting it likely has more to do with a lack of imagination than the quality of the actual experience.  More often … Continue reading

May 7, 2014
by Rachel Gustafson
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Is it strange that fear of God can draw us closer to Him?

Awaking from a bad dream is a different kind of waking.  It is not the gradual, sun-dappled arousal of a slow Sunday morning.  It is the sensation of a reverse drowning–being pulled from shadowy, deep, moving river into the drier … Continue reading

April 30, 2014
by Rachel Gustafson
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Hitting publish on this one, hoping that somehow cements it in my soul.

There is a creature endemic to darkness, one that can make itself appear innocuous, ingratiating itself to us with false piety but whose entire purpose it is to keep us there.  In shadowy places, Shame makes itself our close and … Continue reading

April 24, 2014
by Rachel Gustafson
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Are your ordinary circumstances ruining your extraordinary life?

There are a lot of women who admire particular characters in the Bible for various reasons.  Mary was submissive to God’s will.  Ruth was loyal.  Sarah was obedient.  But these last couple years I’ve had a  fascination with a woman … Continue reading

April 7, 2014
by Rachel Gustafson
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It’s not looking so good for those who have it all together.

This is the ugliest scar.  The one covered self-consciously, forearm drawn close over the vulnerable spot: I felt cast-off and forgotten.  And when I dusted myself off, I looked around to see that there was no one in particular to … Continue reading

February 3, 2014
by Rachel Gustafson
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On Scuba Diving and Deep Sea Thinking

Last week I was remembering a series of scuba dives I took several years back when we visited Mexico.  I had been working towards scuba certification in some community center pool in the middle of winter in Minnesota but I … Continue reading

January 27, 2014
by Rachel Gustafson
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Do you ever get the distinct impression you’re living someone else’s life?

I am currently living the life that I once mocked.  A friend and I sometimes reminisce about a day when a particularly ornery chaplain at our college spoke to a group of campus advocates outlining all the ways in which … Continue reading