The Rev. Paul Graves has an occasional practice of sharing a letter to his three grandchildren in his column for The Spokesman Review. In his most recent, he explores confrontation as a practical and spiritual matter.
"As I watched immigrant children sitting silent in cages on our southern borders, I could only imagine what grief and fear their silence betrayed," writes the Rev. Paul Graves in a letter to his grandkids. In his message Graves considers the power of sacred silence, both in times where it is a reprieve to a noisy world and in moments where it is an alternative to a silence born in fear.
Considering the contemporary argument that severe immigration enforcement is the "law of the land," Rev. Paul Graves looks to how Jesus engaged his contemporaries and their rigid application of Jewish laws. "[Jesus] knew unconditional love is the unexplored territory between those laws and the deeper meaning of those laws."
"I don’t want to hate anybody, especially the political leaders I vehemently disagree with," writes the Rev. Paul Graves. Reflecting on a cultural climate "where it's hard not to hate," Graves suggests that our faith offers us a better path than hate or despair if we risk opening our hearts to the world around us.
In a post for Nurturing Elders on the PNW News Blog, Rev. Paul Graves explores what it takes to keep the brain healthy as we age. While he wasn't surprised to find that that those who kept active through volunteering were rewarded with better brain health, he was to discover the primary importance of motivation. According to one study those who regularly volunteered lived longer "but only if their intentions were truly altruistic."
The process of downsizing has not been easy one for the Rev. Paul Graves as his family moves to a new, smaller home. In his post, Graves considers the value of accumulated "stuff" and the relationship between grief and gratitude.