S.U.P.

Every year, around the time of my birthday, I try to make a point to do something on my bucket list.  For example, on my 21st birthday, I went sky diving and for my 25th, I went on a hot air ballon ride. I really don’t like talk without action. I don’t always want to…

Secrets & Surprises

I’ve been keeping a secret. I have known for over 5 months now that I would be coming to California this November. Back in the spring of this year, Jesus had been gently but persistently suggesting to a friend of mine that they pay for a plane ticket to California for me. While I know…

A Ripe Avocado

August 2nd, 2016: This morning, I was thinking to myself, “Aw, nuts! I probably won’t be able to make guacamole until the end of the year since now is not the time of year for avocados” (avocados are rather uncommon here in Sicily, or so it would seem). Then a friend comes to me this…

Exactly What I Needed

 I just met them earlier this year. A few months after we were first introduced, we were having dinner at the house of some mutual friends when we started discussing what it looks like for each of us personally to live by faith. Earlier that same day, I had a technician come to my house…

Flashing Neon Signs

Whether I am looking for a job, a car, a place to live, a church to attend, what college to go to or what ice cream to buy at the supermarket, I could thoroughly inspect all the options the world can offer but only God can see the future and knows what is ultimately best…

Ripe Flowers

Divine decorations: Last week, my sister in California asked if I would be at home Wednesday or Thursday evening of the same week. She said she had a surprise but couldn’t say what it was, only that I needed to be home. I was thinking perhaps my grandparents were coming to visit my sister and…

Not By Chance

Today’s Reminder of God’s Sovereignty: Today I went to Catania to pick up my new visa document. Or at least that was my plan in going to Catania. This document has been ready for several weeks and after two other failed attempts to go to Catania earlier this week, today was going to be the…

Of Packages & Party Dresses

Does God really care what I wear to my birthday party?  (written August 2015) This last week I turned 33. A week before my birthday, I found myself at a nearby shopping mall looking for a light fixture for my dining room. As I was passing by one clothing store after another, I had the…

The Language of Circumstances

January 29, 2015 Today’s reading from Oswald Chambers’ daily devotional, “My Utmost For His Highest” immediately made me think of some of my favorite ripe banana stories. Here’s what it said: “Has the voice of God come to you directly? If it has, you cannot mistake the intimate insistence with which it has spoken to…

An Escort Home

What do you get when you aren’t specific enough in the things you ask God for? Four-legged Escorts. A few weeks ago, unavoidable circumstances found me walking home alone late at night. As I started the 15 minute walk home, I began telling Jesus while the security and protection he provides can’t be beat, it sure…

Off the Bat

Sweet bananas met me no more than 60 feet inside the front doors of the Sonoma County Airport early this morning. They came in the form of the two kind and handsome men who were waiting to assist me at the ticket counter when I arrived, luggage and family members in tow. The younger of…

Nutella Brownies

Nutella is a chocolate-hazelnut spread and in my humble opinion, utterly delish. What peanut butter is to America, Nutella is to most of Europe. I happen to love Nutella. I especially love Nutella and peanut butter together. I like to think they go together even better than peas and carrots. Somewhere around 5-7 weeks ago, I…