God – Fragments Against Ruin http://tonywoodlief.com Sat, 20 May 2017 00:31:10 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.5 Hammering art http://tonywoodlief.com/2017/02/10/hammering-art/ Fri, 10 Feb 2017 15:21:33 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=4750 They say all great men have a morning routine, so I figured I ought to rush right out and get me one of those. I’ll belabor the elements of that routine while subtly flattering myself for it some other time; the point today is that it often includes listening to Writer’s Almanac while I make …

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Of mice and men http://tonywoodlief.com/2017/01/31/of-mice-and-men/ Tue, 31 Jan 2017 16:22:10 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=4735 The mice think I am a god. Not the God, but definitely a god. Their tithe is a fresh-hollowed hazelnut, rolled into the center of my floor every morning. The nuts come, no doubt, from the two-pound bag they stole last month. I don’t know how long it took them, only that one morning the …

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Fair http://tonywoodlief.com/2015/01/15/fair/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2015/01/15/fair/#comments Thu, 15 Jan 2015 14:59:58 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=4554 I’ve been working on contentment, which mostly means I’ve been praying for God to help me be content in whatever circumstances I find myself, then griping at him when I face trials that might help me learn contentment. But I’m trying, I swear. Those of you who know me know that my life thus far …

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Thy kingdom come http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/07/03/thy-kingdom-come/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/07/03/thy-kingdom-come/#comments Thu, 03 Jul 2014 14:28:27 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=4521 I don’t think they love their children any less than I love my own, which tells me something about what their lives must be like, to send their babies away. Their children stream northward in droves—as many as 60,000 this year—and we don’t want them. We don’t want their skin lesions and their hungry bellies, …

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The world we show them http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/02/13/the-world-we-show-them/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/02/13/the-world-we-show-them/#comments Thu, 13 Feb 2014 18:20:28 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=4118 “Which world do you want to live in?” My oldest son, just days from his 14th birthday, glares back at me. Behind him in the car sit his brothers. Their hands are pressed to their faces. One of them is crying. Caleb begins to explain why he smacked them. Eli was needling him about something. Isaac, …

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Past where legs can carry http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/02/06/past-where-legs-can-carry/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/02/06/past-where-legs-can-carry/#comments Thu, 06 Feb 2014 21:11:06 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=3805 The day after an amazingly talented actor pushed heroin into his vein and died, I saw yet another study purporting to show that we live in the best of times. It’s hard to disagree. Infant mortality and poverty are plummeting. Our lifespans are being extended. More people worldwide are literate, and more of them can …

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The ministering parent http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/01/23/the-ministering-parent/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/01/23/the-ministering-parent/#comments Thu, 23 Jan 2014 18:43:45 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=3794 Do you ever look on your children, and wish they had better than you? Back when we were shopping my embarrassingly confessional first book, my agent at the time told me I needed a ministry to accompany it. She said this as a realist, not an enthusiast. You need a platform to sell your wares. …

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On the virtue of not being special http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/01/16/on-the-virtue-of-not-being-special/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/01/16/on-the-virtue-of-not-being-special/#comments Thu, 16 Jan 2014 13:22:09 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=3789 “I have a sense,” I once told a counselor, “that I’m supposed to do something great.” He sat back in his chair and smiled. “Oh yeah. Everyone has that feeling about himself. Especially in this country.” I was deflated for weeks. My sense of destiny was just a psychological quirk born of Western narcissism. Maybe …

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The Cost of Calling http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/12/26/the-cost-of-calling/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/12/26/the-cost-of-calling/#comments Thu, 26 Dec 2013 20:34:42 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=3764 Many parents carry within our hearts—sometimes in a cramped and even despairing corner—a vision of what we hope our children will become. This vision lives deeper than our wish that they be doctors or NFL quarterbacks, deeper even than our desire for their happiness. Our heart-dwelling hope is that they will be good and true, that …

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The obscured man http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/12/12/the-obscured-man/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/12/12/the-obscured-man/#comments Thu, 12 Dec 2013 21:24:14 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=3744 This is not a comment about the reasoning of a Slate essayist, who wrote recently that the white Santa is outdated. This is not a comment about the Fox News talking head who took umbrage, asserting that not only Santa, but also Jesus, is white. This is not a comment about the predictable crowds who …

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