Posts by Nicole Zinn

As Pride Month Wraps Up….

I literally fielded this conversation just the other day (and others like it many times before): “I know I need Jesus. I want to be connected to God. But I’m pretty liberal, so… well, obviously you see the problem.” Clearly the man didn’t know me well – and he didn’t know the Bible at all. […]

Favorite Love Tacoma Sunday memory?

Might have been one of our very first Love Tacoma Sundays. Titlow Park. Thirty-ish people, ages 1-70, armed with shovels and hoes. A huge mound of fresh bark. And right at that mound, purple plastic bucket in one hand and a little shovel in the other, 4-year-old Demara leans down from her wheelchair to scoop […]

Yep. Done it.

Here’s the ugly truth: Every time I hear of someone’s disappointment with “the church,” I find myself thinking…  “Ugh, that’s me.” Talked behind someone’s back? I’ve done it. Betrayed someone’s trust? I’ve done it. Helped someone out and made them feel like a “project?” I’ve done it. Acted fake? Lied? Shown favoritism? Been self-righteous? Definitely. […]

In Defiance of Januaries

He found me curled and weeping, my husband did, as he had found me the night before… and the night before… and the night before… through all that endless winter. House around me, a maelstrom of the unguided activity of two 10-month-olds and two 2½ yr olds — my precious children, yes… but my captors, […]

I meant to invite him to dinner. I really did…

I meant to invite him to dinner. I really did. My gentle, old neighbor with the ruined long-term memory, who always smiled enthusiastically but never remembered my name. I meant to invite him to Christmas Eve service. I really did. And I knew that if I extended the invitation, he would come. Truth, though? In […]

Halloween & Jesus: 6 Ideas for Making Halloween Meaningful

Every year we get this strange opportunity… Here’s how the Zinn family does Halloween! ———— Halloween is weird. Cute kids and large quantities of sugar. Yards strewn with synthetic spiderwebs and battery-powered cackling skeletons and gigantic inflatable witches. A background that includes remembering the dead, pacifying ancient Celtic gods, prayer and fasting… and smashed pumpkins. […]

Sermon on the Mount: A Summertime Plan for Families

One of my favorite things about summer is the change of pace that my kids experience. As homework pressures disappear, and the intense schedule of school and extracurricular activities shifts into summer mode, a different side of my children emerges. They get funnier, they talk more, they revive that long-lost interest they had in robotics… or books… or gardens… or stars. They even get to where they like each other better! And I love it all.

We recognized long ago in the Zinn house that summer is a wide-open opportunity for shaping our characters — our own and those of our children. So we begin praying weeks, sometimes even months, before summer hits — “Lord, what are the best ways you want us to use this coming summer? What are the things you want us to learn? What are the memories you want us to make? What are the risks you want us to jump into?

Let’s Do This

Monday evening. Dinner. Our family is together again after a couple of days of quickly moving parts in various directions. We are hashing through the weekend — and my husband Brian pauses, uncharacteristically somber around the eyes: “I saw a theme yesterday.”

“A theme?”

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Act One: After a beautiful morning at church, we headed to a BBQ lunch at the home of some long-time family friends. They were celebrating the baptism that morning of their 15-year-old son, complete with hot dogs and hamburgers and a house full of people.

Brian met the parents of one of the kids’ girlfriend. Military family. From Texas. Been here six years — and moving back to Texas this summer.

“It’s so unfriendly here. We’ve been so excited to come to this BBQ — like, we’re finally gonna spend some time with people! Can’t wait to get back to Texas and be part of BBQs and picnics and get-togethers with people again.”

Cut.

Persecution and Humanity

The following story is both timely and moving — and came from some of Discovery’s friends in service abroad. Many of you have directly participated in one of their translation projects through your designated giving. We have permission to share this with all of you, as long as we avoid certain words for the security of those involved. And when you are finished reading, take a moment to pray for them…

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Dear friends and family,

I don’t know if you’ve ever gotten a chance to meet someone who has actually tried to kill one of your loved ones, but a couple weeks ago I did.

If you’ve followed our updates, you are familiar with a man we’ve called Alvin – the only totally open local believer we have ever met on our island.  Just to recap, Alvin and I met to pray regularly for about two years.  During those two years, I witnessed the difficulty of Alvin’s life – abuse, threats, homelessness, rejection.  One day Alvin was gone.  Just gone.  A few weeks later we heard he had left for another country.

A few months ago, I had my first conversation with Alvin in over 2 years, and he told me the story about how M, a local cleric, had asked permission from the president to have him executed.  The president had refused, and Alvin (remarkably calm about the incident) stayed on the island.  But one night the police came to Alvin, and warning him of threat, helped him board a fishing boat that same night and flee to a neighboring country; apparently, M was still at work.