Take Joy Sister! All Is Grace. Eucharisteo!

Those are the hand written words for my wife from Ann Voskamp.

This morning I finished One Thousand Gifts and wept.

Here, this grown man of fifty one, weeping over a woman’s ability to form into words the authentic struggle and blessing of life. It wasn’t information passed, but a communion of well chosen words arranged in a book vase and set on the desk of this man’s heart.

I love flowers and beauty and poetry, especially when they are placed within weeds and ugly and the flat sentences of life. That is what Ann Voskamp has given to me over the past six months; her heart. It wasn’t her heart only, but the cadence of every heartbeat reverberating off life authentic.

I cannot add words to this book.

Ann summed it up when I handed my wife’s copy to her…

Joy can be taken!

Grace is everywhere.

Gratefulness precedes the miracle. Eucharisteo!


I will come back to the poetic prose of Voskamp. Have you read One Thousand Gifts?

Day Broke Me Open

They passed by.

The waves of storms rolled toward sunrise.

To the west a rainbow was pierced

with a serrated knife of electricity.

To the east tufts of clouds

like pale pink umbrellas hung.


Intervals of solid rain tucked me

under the soffit to read.

Ann wrote about the pursuit of beauty

and there I was under it, in it.


Praise had come as rain.

Praise left my mouth.

Praise was sent to find the source of beauty.


My most significant Other read to me poetry.

I heard His inflections and cadence.

Oh my God, I am undone,

yet what better place to be unraveled

than under an umbrella with You.


“Doubt the philosophies, doubt the prophecies, doubt the Pharisees (especially the ones seen in mirrors), but Who can doubt this, Beauty? Beauty requires no justification, no explanation; it simply is and transcends. See beauty and we know it  in the marrow, even if we have no words for it: Someone is behind it, in it. Beauty Himself completes.” Ann Voskamp, One Thousand Gifts