• Give The Song A Little Space – Jeff Tweedy

    I’ve been reading, and loving, Jeff Tweedy’s book, “How to Write One Song.” Here’s one gem from it:

    “Let me just say this: I believe we stop ourselves sometimes when we’re happy. We create conflict in our relationships sometimes because we’re feeling uncertain and needy. Feeling attached to something can be uncomfortable. Sometimes your stuck because you’re anxious about losing something you love. Maybe you were sailing along working on a song and you kind of fell in love with it. And then you felt vulnerable because “What if its not really good?” Or “What if I can’t realize the full potential of this song?” Isn’t that what someone in the world of psychology would call an “unhealthy attachment?” Maybe you pulled back when you started to fell something. Maybe you recognized yourself in the song and felt a connection that felt like love. And then you worried, “Will it love me back?” Just let a song be itself. Let it be what it wants to be – what it needs to be. A song will always love you back, but sometimes it just needs a little space.” – Jeff Tweedy, (How to Write One Song: 149).

  • What Does the Eye See?

    Photo by Daniel Apodaca on Unsplash

    This is a message I shared with Jamestown Friends Meeting in Jamestown, NC on June 11, 2023.

    Matthew 9:9-13

    “As Jesus was walking along, he saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax booth; and he said to him, “Follow me.” And he got up and followed him.

    And as he sat at dinner in the house, many tax collectors and sinners came and were sitting with him and his disciples. When the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” But when he heard this, he said, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. Go and learn what this means, ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have come to call not the righteous but sinners.””

    Matthew 9:9–13 NRSV

    An Exercise in Seeing

    Today, I want to talk to you about seeing. About what you see and how you see.

    So first, before we begin, Let’s take a deep breath together.

    Then, I want you to look around. Look around the room. Look at each other. It’s okay to make eye contact if you like. It might be a little weird or silly, but that’s okay. But what I want you to do is look and make an effort to take it all in first. What do you see? What do you notice?

    Hold that thought.

    Seeing What You See

    One of my favorite authors, Austin Kleon, has a book called: Keep Going: 10 Ways to Stay Creative in Good Times and In Bad. In it, he writes about one of his favorite artists: a nun named Sister Mary Corita Kent. The story he tells is of when she became inspired by a show she saw from Andy Warhol that led her into screen printing.

  • Clara Ione Cox – A Little Quaker Pastor Inspiration During Pride Month

    This is a post I wrote as a part of series we’re working on at Friends Center to celebrate Pride by lifting up Quakers who were also part of the LGBTQIA+ family.

    I first met Clara when I visited the Quaker Archives at Guilford College shortly after my arrival to Greensboro, NC in 2015. Living out in the Pacific Northwest, I knew many Quakers who didn’t fit into a nice, neat, “Quakerly” box. Few were Quakers from long lines of Quaker families. Many came to Quakerism after some change, transition, or looking for an alternative faith community that was different than what was generally on offer. Most of my heroes have been people who don’t fit the mold in one way or another. I guess I like these people because I’ve experienced life as an outsider and know well the inner walls of “imposter syndrome”. I imagine that many of these feelings and experiences were true for Clara Ione Cox as well. When Gwen Gosney Erickson, Quaker Archivist at Guilford, first told me about Clara, I knew I found my person.

  • Change and Trust

    Dr. Mandy Cohen, the former N.C. Secretary of Health and Human Services, was the honorary degree recipient this year at Guilford College’s graduation. This is one piece of her remarks that has stuck with me.

    “Trust is the foundation of all relationships, both personal and professional. I truly believe change happens at the pace of trust. If you want to make change in this world through your professional endeavors – making the world safer, more just, more equitable, more beautiful, more resilient, or healthier – you will need to think intentionally about trust.”

    Read more here: Mandy Cohen’s Remarks to the Class of 2023

  • Quakers, Colonization, and Decolonization Conference in Philly June 12-15

    Hi all, I wanted to share this upcoming conference with all of you from Friends Association for Higher Education. I hope to attend myself and would love to see you there.

    Here is the press release:

    44th Annual Meeting of the Friends Association for Higher Education
    Quakers, Colonization, and Decolonization
    June 12-15, 2023Hosted by Haverford College, Haverford PAGet more information and register here.

    • Full in-person overnight option
    • Commuter option
    • Zoom option

    4 Hybrid Plenary Sessions:

    • International Decolonization Issues
    • Decolonizing and Land Back
    • Indian Boarding Schools
    • Insights for discernment moving forward.

    25 Concurrent Presentations

    • 4 session In-person series
    • 4 session Zoom series
    • From “Quaker Colonists” to “the Future of a decolonized quakerism.”
    • From “Seeking Peace Without Land Justice” to “Researching Native American Boarding Schools.”

    50 Presenters 

    • 12 of Indigenous heritage representing 11 Turtle Island Nations
    • 30 Quakers representing 13 Yearly Meetings and 5 continents
    • 10 Colleges and Universities

    All are welcome regardless of your academic background or current knowledge of these issues.


Resisting Empire: The Book of Revelation as Resistance (2019)

Resisting Empire: The Book of Revelation as Resistance looks at Revelation from the perspective that Revelation is not about predicting the end times but is instead a handbook for early Christian resistance and survival against empire.

Resisting Empire: The Book of Revelation on Bookshop.

A Convergent Model of Renewal: Remixing the Quaker Tradition in a Participatory Culture (2015)

A convergent Model of Renewal lays out a model for working with congregations and communities alike, interested in maintaining their tradition while also becoming more connected to their context and needs of their community.

A Convergent Model on Bookshop

Image of the cover of the book The Quaker World
The Quaker World Co-Edited With Rhiannon Grant – 2022

The Quaker World is a book with over 50 authors around the world covering sections such as global Quaker history, to spirituality, and embodiment and emphasizes global Quaker diversity and biographies of Quakers.

The Quaker World on Bookshop.

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