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About Lauren R.E. Larkin

Lauren R. E. Larkin is a graduate of Trinity School for Ministry where she earned an MDiv and STM focusing on Systematic Theology and Ethics with a special interest in grace, gender, and justice. She is married to a wonderful man and stays at home with her two boys and her daughter. She is currently a doctoral candidate at Universität Zürich. She has contributed essays to various publications, including The Gospel According to Pixar and Comfortable Words: Essays in Honor of Paul F.M. Zahl and regularly contributes to theological blogs: Mockingbird, Dropping Keys, and Liberate.

http://theneedlethepotandthepen.blogspot.com/

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Author Archive
    
    Confession as Profession: Love and the Hope of Forgiveness

    Confession as Profession: Love and the Hope of Forgiveness

    “Somewhere else in The Elder Statesman, Lord Claverton observes that no one confesses where there is no hope of forgiveness.” – Capon

    It was one of those mornings. You know, the one with three kids, two of whom are dragging their feet to get ready for the walk to school. My begging and pleading was getting old and so was their concurrent whining. As I watched my seven-year-old struggle to tie his shoe and listened to my eldest whimper about his itchy scarf, the damn broke: “Damn it!”

    I squatted down, grabbed the shoelaces and the foot attached to them and growled, “You’re…

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    I Love You, Child, As I Have Been Loved

    I Love You, Child, As I Have Been Loved

    Perusing some of the links in my favorite online parenting journal, I ran across an interesting little story of a mother and daughter, told from the daughter’s perspective primarily. (Full article here.) The background goes as follows: the mother is apparently in the hospital, hooked up to tubes and unresponsive. The daughter is at her mother’s bedside begging for her to respond. “Please? Mom? C’mon…you have to wake up. This whole thing is freaking me out! You’re just staring.” Throughout the story, the daughter repeats: “Mom, blink if you can hear me.”

    But the daughter’s story is less about getting her mother to…

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    “Excuse Me, Ma’am, But That’s TMI”: Six Favorite Moments of 2015

    “Excuse Me, Ma’am, But That’s TMI”: Six Favorite Moments of 2015

    I’m one of those people who stumbles across shows and albums and movies waaaaaay after they’ve gone public; all the books I read are written by people who have entered into the great slumber decades, if not centuries, ago. I’ve nothing to offer you about books, movies, shows, albums from 2015 that you don’t already know. But, what I can give you as a year-in-review is, well, me. These few moments are merely moments when I was reminded that my faith in Christ and the theology I study are living breathing things: working both in me and through me toward…

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    The Power of Grief and the Gift of the Present

    The Power of Grief and the Gift of the Present

    The proper definition of “grief” is (according to dictionary.com):

    Keen mental suffering or distress over affliction or loss; sharp sorrow; painful regret. 2. a cause or occasion of keen distress or sorrow

    While I wish it were otherwise, grief is something that most of us have felt at one time or another. Grief is one of those classic human experiences symptomatic of brokenness—ours and the world’s around us. Grief overwhelms the entire body; you can feel grief course through your veins, move through your joints, sound from your vocal chords, bear down on your mind, and burden your back.

    The grief I’ve experienced…

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    A Review of Jess Thompson’s Everyday Grace

    A Review of Jess Thompson’s Everyday Grace

    It’s my belief that any book that opens by quoting Janet Jackson is worth reading; Jessica Thompson’s newest book, Everyday Grace, is certainly no exception to that rule. In fact, I’d go so far to say that even without the reference to Janet Jackson the book is worth reading, and not just because Jess is a good friend. As she does in all of her written work, Jess skillfully and clearly communicates the Gospel of Jesus Christ—to the doctrine of the justification of sinners—from every page. From her astute insights into the multifaceted brokenness of all our relationships to her heart-felt,…

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    Absolved Parenthood

    Absolved Parenthood

    I read a post via the online magazine for parents, Brain, Child, titled, “Regret is Poison.” For a Law/Gospel theologian/parent who isn’t afraid of the darkness of human existence, I was a moth to a flame. Regret? I’m listening. Regret as it pertains to guilt and parenting? Hellooo. I’ve been there. Tell me more. So I read the article.

    The author of the article describes her regret and guilt for how she parented her children in vivid, palpable, imagery:

    Now, as my three eldest children round the corner out of adolescence and into adulthood and my youngest is just a few months…

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    Sick to Sick

    Sick to Sick

    An old article from Slate.com recently caught my attention. And by old, I mean OLD by interwebs standards. The article is dated November, 2013. But I’m just reading it now, which is common, as I’m not the most up-to-date person out there.

    The article’s title is eye-catching: No one brings dinner when your daughter is an addict. Essentially, the author writes about how his family’s fridge and freezer overflowed with meals when his wife was diagnosed with breast cancer. Visits, cards, well-wishes, and meals upon meals upon meals flooded their home. His wife recovered and the meals waned to a full…

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    Even With the Smallest of Us

    Even With the Smallest of Us

    I have two sons. The older one is your quintessential responsible, law-following, parent-pleasing oldest child—a budding Adam Braverman, if you will. The younger son is, well, the opposite; he’s a total scofflaw. My oldest is ready to leave the house ten minutes before it’s time to go; the younger we have to practically pin to the floor and put his shoes on for him. When I call for the boys, the oldest comes over to me quickly, the younger doesn’t, and claims he didn’t hear… Apparently my voice is of the same frequency and tone as Legos clicking together. My…

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    The Shelflife of Judgment

    The Shelflife of Judgment

    What do Twinkies and judgment have in common? Nearly nothing; except for their exceptionally long shelf-lives. If I had to wager which has the longer shelf-life, my money would be on judgment every single time. Surely I’m not the only one who can vividly recall moments in the past that are characterized by judgment; indelible comments, offhand criticisms, permanent words. Ask me about all those good things people have said, those encouraging and affirming words and Err…well…there was that one time…I think… I know historically that I’ve been encouraged and affirmed and loved, but those seem sketched in pencil, easily…

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    Silencing the Messy Conscience

    Silencing the Messy Conscience

    This post originally appeared on LaurenRELarkin.com.

    Whenever the devil harasses you, seek the company of men or drink more, or joke and talk nonsense, or do some other merry thing. Sometimes we must drink more, sport, recreate ourselves, and even sin a little to spite the devil, so that we leave him no place for troubling our consciences with trifles. We are conquered if we try too conscientiously not to sin at all. So when the devil says to you: do not drink, answer him: I will drink, and right freely, just because you tell me not to.

    ― Martin Luther “The Life…

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    Hopelessly Devoted: Genesis Twenty One Fourteen Through Twenty One

    Hopelessly Devoted: Genesis Twenty One Fourteen Through Twenty One

    So Abraham rose early in the morning, and took bread and a skin of water, and gave it to Hagar, putting it on her shoulder, along with the child, and sent her away. And she departed, and wandered about in the wilderness of Beer-sheba. When the water in the skin was gone, she cast the child under one of the bushes.  Then she went and sat down opposite him a good way off, about the distance of a bowshot; for she said, “Do not let me look on the death of the child.” And as she sat opposite him, she…

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    “Excuse Me, Ma’am, But That’s TMI”: Four Favorite Moments of 2014

    “Excuse Me, Ma’am, But That’s TMI”: Four Favorite Moments of 2014

    With three young kids, one who’s a toddler, I don’t get out to the theater much. Being absolutely exhausted at the end of the day, I can barely finish a glass of wine let alone a good novel. I solely rely on Pandora for my music selection and Netflix for TV programming ideas, so I’m not quite “up-to-date” on what’s hot and what’s not in the entertainment industry. But, what I can give you as a year-in-review is, well, me. Before we get any further into January, what follows are some of the moments from this past year when I…

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