November 2023


Finding hope in TV commercials

In our family, the sound gets turned off during TV commercials. It recently occurred to me that these soundless visual stories are doing more than selling products. Many of them may depict lived-out hope! I see a lot of ads related to health, automobiles, medical conditions, insurance and legal help. I witness pleas from charities and other non-profits, teasers for coming shows and a smatteringMORE...

A season for waiting

In its original manifestation—4th century CE—Advent was the time for converts to Christianity to prepare themselves for their baptisms at Epiphany. That ancient practice might be helpful as we try to wrestle with the current state of the world, and our place in it. Some personal thoughts…. Back in my halcyon days, waiting could feel like a waste—”So much to do and so little time.” IMORE...

Numbering our days

(As this year’s calendar winds down, I hearken back to Psalm 90 , a lifelong favorite. One of its  thoughts has stayed with me all my life: “So teach us to number our days, that we might apply our hearts unto wisdom.” [KJV}  Today some thoughts about day-numbering.) As I’ve grown older, I’ve often found myself “numbering my days.” For me, that means taking stock of how time is passing, perhapsMORE...


One of Chicagoland’s best newspaper columnists is a guy named *Neil Steinberg. Like all good writers, he’s nimble with words. His faith, heritage and life experience have rendered him wise, empathetic and honest. His columns consistently shine light on difficult subjects, and he showers kindness on under-appreciated facets of civic life. He’s transparent about his emotions, his struggles and hisMORE...

An elderly nudge

In times of high anxiety—right now?—two of our core capabilities may be at risk: Agency and motivation. (“Agency” identifies our power to affect change, in ourselves or others. “Motivation” is an inner trait that positively alters our willingness to act.) Why might this diminishing of capabilities be happening? The isolating fear of disease, danger or death during COVID19 may have taken away ourMORE...

Clustered prayers

Lately, my times of prayer seem to be interwoven with memories of time-and-place experiences in life. These reveries include entire clusters of beloved people. (For example, when I remember our San Leandro, California years, my mind gathers together Rich and Gretchen, Liz and Larry, Mary and Jim, Barry, Ralph, Sandy, Linda, Wendy, Aunt Mona, Chris and our kids, and my 3rd-4th graders—and theMORE...

Staying on track

Lately I’ve felt nudged towards thoughts and attitudes that in other times I would have called unhinged. Chaotic international and domestic events highlight supposed leaders whose pronouncements seem deranged. (For example, competing national leaders trumpet the supposed benefits of oppression and/or aggression. Incoherently angry people gather followers and legitimacy. Self-destructiveMORE...

Can I get some pity here?

(While knee-deep in preparation for All Soles Day observances, I came upon this idea that was tiptoeing around inside my neuronal interweavings.) Lately I’ve noticed that I’m not getting the amount of sympathy that I think I deserve. To correct this deficit, I want to share with you the results of a recent X-ray of my left foot, revealing the following pathos-worthy conditions. Mild degenerationMORE...

Bob Sitze

BOB SITZE has filled the many years of his lifework in diverse settings around the United States. His calling has included careers as a teacher/principal, church musician, writer/author, denominational executive staff member and meat worker. Bob lives in Wheaton, IL.

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