Author: Julie M. Smith

I live in Austin, Texas, with my husband, Derrick, an electrical engineer. We have three boys: Simon ('98), Nathan ('01), and Truman ('04). We are a homeschooling family and I also teach at the LDS Institute here in Austin. I have a BA in English from UT Austin and an MA in Biblical Studies (Theology) from the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California, where I specialized in the study of women in the New Testament. I wrote my thesis on Mark 14:3-9, which I explored from literary and feminist perspectives to determine how the story teaches the audience about Jesus's identity. I wrote a book, Search, Ponder, and Pray: A Guide to the Gospels. It contains 4,000 questions (no answers) designed to get the LDS reader to really think about the scriptures and to introduce the major findings of biblical studies to the general reader. I like to read, buy books, and go out for ethnic food.

How the Other Half Preaches

A pool in our area had a free admission day this summer and I’m nothing if not cheap so there we were. Imagine the delighted looks on my kids’ faces when they saw not only a FREE pool, but FREE inflatable bouncers, FREE snowcones, FREE hot dogs, FREE chips, and FREE games with prizes.

Mourning with Those Who Mourn

So I’m at the pool last week with someone I really like but don’t know all that well and we’re kvetching about grocery prices, etc., when out of nowhere she says, “So I know you lost a baby daughter last winter. How are you doing with that?”

For Our Central Texas Readers . . .

An Adult Religion Class will be offered this Fall in the Primary room of the Pflugerville Building on Thursdays from 8pm-9:30pm beginning on August 28th. The class will cover Psalms 1-89 and will be taught by me. The class fee is $16.25. Questions? Email me at my first name AT timesandseasons DOT org.

God As a Longshoreman

Without meaning to, this story (you can read it, but it is better to listen to it–it’s only a minute or so long) does a better job of explaining the nature of our relationship with God than almost anything else I have encountered.

Blood on the Doorposts

Let’s call her Sister Jones. We both taught seminary in Northern California a few years ago. I liked her from day one: faithful, funny, and willing to lend out anything from her complete collection of Sunstone back issues. (This was in the days before full Internet access, you see.)