On Doing Advent Wrong (or Maybe, Just Right)

Christmas is about the material illuminating the immaterial, about intangible spiritual truths being revealed through tangible physical things. God doesn’t reveal the love and grace at the heart of the universe by beaming deep thoughts into our brains. God reveals love and grace through a newborn baby. There is nothing “spiritual” about a baby; babies are all flesh and need. Similarly, our Christmas traditions communicate what we know about God’s love and grace through stuff that we can see and smell and touch and taste, stuff that speaks to our own flesh and need. [Read more...]

God Does Not Make Me Happy (or Three Things I Learned About My Relationship with God)

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Last weekend, I went on a one-night retreat with my church’s vestry. (In an Episcopal church, the vestry is akin to a board of directors. We advise and collaborate with the clergy on big-picture questions around the church’s mission, and approve the annual budget. I am in my third year of a three-year vestry term.) [Read More...]


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