Carolyn Thomas

  • Experiments in Advent

    On Sunday we lit the second Advent candle in church, which means I’ve been observing Advent for the first time as an adult for about a week and a half. I’m pretty sure you need to practice this tradition for years to be able to really sink down into...
  • Let Us Keep The Feast: A Book Recommendation

    It all started with Chaim Potok—the 20th century Jewish novelist who wrote mainly about Orthodox and Hasidic Jews living in New York City, and is famous for such books as The Chosen and My Name is Asher Lev. I discovered his novels in college, and, after reading a few...
  • The Middle of the Story

    Warning: Spoilers ahead for classics you should have already read! I didn’t want to write for the blog this week. I’m going through a very difficult situation at work that has me feeling like I’ve been turned inside out. I don’t know what’s going to happen. I can’t see...
  • Being the Answer

    Sometimes in life we have the opportunity to be something especially beautiful: we have the opportunity to be the answer to someone’s prayer. I was staying at a friend’s house one night, and we were sitting together watching TV when I got a call from my sister. She was...
  • The Eucharist with Children

    The Huffington Post recently published an article thanking the parents of young children for bringing their kids to church because of all that it teaches us about being part of the Body of Christ. I couldn’t agree more. Specifically, I think of all the things the children in our...
  • Austenland: When You’re Living in an Austen Novel

    I saw Austenland recently. For those of you who haven’t heard of it—it’s a movie about a woman obsessed with all things Jane Austen, who’s been unlucky in love and decides to spend her life’s savings to attend an immersive Austen experience in England complete with manor house, Regency...
  • Small Acts of Faithfulness

    A friend of mine recently found out that her husband has been doing drugs behind her back for four years. The drugs have opened the door to all kinds of betrayal and hurt: lying, adultery, personality change, and absence. As she and I talked together on the beach in...
  • Jewels

    My friend Adria Murphy writes for me this week, with thoughts on materialism, treasure, and the wisdom of Wendell Berry: The jewelry store in my mother’s neighborhood was going out of business. Sale prices intended to empty the shop of its shining inventory, handwritten on construction paper, obstructed our...
  • The Fault in Our Stars: A Review

    Sometimes I like to read a popular book, a book that everyone is reading—so that I can know what everybody is talking about and, maybe, join in the conversation. So a couple weeks ago I read The Fault in Our Stars—the latest young adult novel from author John Green....
  • On This Day in History

    I want to tell you a story. Five years ago today, I got dropped off on Biola University’s campus to catch a ride with a stranger to the Bay Area for Spring Break. My dear friend Sarah and her parents had graciously invited me to spend the week at...
  • Confessions of a Codependent

    Instead of writing something myself this week, I wanted to share-with her permission–a post from my dear friend Adria Murphy. When I read this, it spoke words of truth and comfort to that fearful part of my heart that is always unable to understand or accept that God loves...
  • A Birthday Thank You To My Parents:

    I celebrated my 26th birthday this last Saturday. And, though I am a little freaked out by the fact that I am now officially closer to 30 than to 20, on the whole I can only feel a deep sense of thankfulness: I am thankful to be 26, to...
  • Gracious Light

    It can all come to feel so mundane. Established. Foreseeable. So taken for granted. It’s a given. The daily commute. The workday. The repetition. All the hours, and things that we will do in them and see in them mapped out. We come to feel a certain predictability in...
  • Do You Deserve My Help?

    He approaches us at the Chevron station on the corner of Rosecrans and Sepulveda, where, on a clear day, you can see the skyscrapers of downtown L.A. cupped in the palm of the San Gabriel mountains, and overhead the planes queued up in the vast expanse of blue sky,...
  • Bible_in_Laundry_basket

    Liturgical Living

    When I took my job as a nanny/housekeeper, I had no idea how much repetition it would involve. My days revolve around the never-finished tasks of preparing food, making beds, washing dishes, putting away clothes, assisting with homework, sweeping floors, etc. At first I resented the sisyphean nature of...