Why Is There So Much Good in the World?

by Melannie Svoboda SND on August 3, 2020

Does the title of this blog surprise you? Did you think the word good was a mistake? Did you think, “Surely, she meant evil“? No, the title is not a mistake. It refers to something I read years ago by M. Scott Peck, well-known writer and psychologist, author of that wonderful book, The Road Less […]

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A Meditation on a Barn

by Melannie Svoboda SND on July 27, 2020

A while ago, one of our readers, Joe Masterleo, sent me one of his poems entitled “A Barn.” I really liked it and thought you might enjoy it too–especially those of you who, like me, actually had or currently have a barn in your life. Joe lives with his wife Ruth in Jamesville, NY. He […]

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Is It Time for Spiritual Cataract Surgery?

by Melannie Svoboda SND on July 20, 2020

A few months ago I had cataract surgery. I had my left eye done right before covid-19 put a temporary stop to such surgeries. For seven weeks, there I was: left eye, no cataract. Right eye, cataract. It was a unique situation to be in. When I closed my left eye, I saw the world […]

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Anatomy of Crabbiness

by Melannie Svoboda SND on July 13, 2020

Sometimes I get crabby. When I do, I can often point to several root causes: the injustices I perceive in the world around me and in my personal life; the pain and sorrow of others as well as my own; the state of the economy, society, education, family life, the planet, and the church; my […]

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A Kitchen Is a Holy Place

by Melannie Svoboda SND on July 6, 2020

A kitchen is a holy place, as holy as any sanctuary. What was the kitchen of your childhood like? When I was growing up, we had a bright yellow kitchen. It wasn’t very big, just large enough to accommodate a stove, a refrigerator, and a sink with counters and cupboards extending on both sides. Two […]

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What Does Jesus Save Us From?

by Melannie Svoboda SND on June 29, 2020

The name Jesus is derived from the Hebrew Yeshu which means to deliver, to rescue, to save. It’s good to ask ourselves: what does Jesus save us from? The short answer might be sin or death. But I have found those two words a bit too general and vague. It can be more helpful to […]

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Prayer: Sniffing and Sifting for the Kingdom

by Melannie Svoboda SND on June 22, 2020

I was thinking about prayer the other day. (I confess: it’s often easier to think about prayer than it is to pray!) And I was thinking about some metaphors for prayer. (Whenever I’m musing over metaphors, I’m in good company, for Jesus was a master of metaphor: “I am the vine… fear not, little flock… […]

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My Dad

by Melannie Svoboda SND on June 15, 2020

In honor of Father’s Day, I’m writing about my father. My Dad, John Svoboda, was born in 1914 in Cleveland, Ohio. His parents, John and Anna, were immigrants from Bohemia. Their first child, a little girl, was stillborn. My Dad was born a year later, followed by five other children: Helen, Jim, Charlie, Alice, and […]

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Let’s Talk about the Stars

by Melannie Svoboda SND on June 8, 2020

Today we’re going to talk about the stars. (This reflection is not an escape from the current headlines. It’s a realignment of our perspective.) We’ll review a few fascinating facts about the stars, say something about THE Star Maker, note a few stars in the Bible, and conclude with a short prayer. How many stars […]

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Seeking God in the “Land of Unlikeness”

by Melannie Svoboda SND on June 1, 2020

The poet W. H. Auden has written a beautiful poem called, “For the Time Being: Xmas Oratorio.” In it he suggests that we should seek God in three unusual places. One of those places is the Land of Unlikeness. He’s saying, I suggest, that we must seek God in people, places, and circumstances that are […]

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