Milwaukee and the Space Between

What is the name for the thing that happens when people ask you to do as they say, not as they do? What is the name of the thing that happens when people have a promise and a duty and they not only fail to fulfill it, they show disdain for their responsibilities? People who cry for peace but then act for war come to mind. All of these factors weigh heavy in the burning of Milwaukee. I’ve been there in recent years, wide boulevards and clear skies, Midwestern charm. Has there been a higher p … [Read more...]

When Faith Fades

O come, let us sing to the Lord; let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation! Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving;
let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!
For the Lord is a great God,
and a great King above all gods.
In his hand are the depths of the earth;
 the heights of the mountains are his also.
The sea is his, for he made it, and the dry land, which his hands have formed. O come, let us worship and bow down, let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!
Fo … [Read more...]

No more loyal love, no more compassion

Have you ever cried so much that you run out of tears? The post I offered previous to this was about the splendid promise of grief. And, still, we are flooded by a tide of violence that does not relent. Alton Sterling and Philando Castile were executed without due process by police officers. Other incidents of terror and hate crisscross the globe, and people mourn and wonder what else they can do. Do you feel your shoulders inching toward your ears in a shrug? Do you find yourself less and … [Read more...]

At a Loss for Words

This will sound so cliche. But, I'm just at a loss for words.+France and another attack. Just no words left.That doesn't mean hopeless or despairing, just quiet and thoughtful. What is worth saying in the world we have lived through in the last few weeks? So many words have been poured out, and so few help.Through it all babies continue to be born. People get married. Young, hopeful, beautiful lovebirds commit to life together. Jobs are kept and loss. Migraines still manifest. Books … [Read more...]

Learning To Live A Better Story

In 1949, American scholar, Joseph Campbell, published a book called  The Hero With a Thousand Faces, which argued that the narrative arch of every drama, myth, and religious ritual known to humankind could  be broken down into three basic acts: 1) an initial set up (the protagonist is called to adventure); 2) a confrontation (the protagonist faces trials and setbacks); and, 3) a resolution (the tension is resolved and the character learns something new about themselves). Campbell called this un … [Read more...]

Those Who Grieve Deeply

CW: Pulse shooting, grief  “The thing is,” my friend said recently, “Jesus can’t really help me with the way being human involves making mistakes. Because They never made any.”But Jesus did die once, maybe twice, depending on who you say Jesus is. So They know something about death.And then, approximately fifty people, mostly Puerto Ricans, were murdered by assault rifle in a shooting at Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida. Unlike Jesus, they do not have a pro … [Read more...]

3 reasons why I am going to the Wildgoose Festival- AGAIN!

Three Reasons Why I am going to the Wildgoose Festival this SummerIn 2005, my first year of bible college and theological education, I found myself reading thoughts I had never heard in my years as a fundamentalist. By 2011, I had developed a paranoia that I was one of the apostates, often times praying for hours each day that God would correct my theology and save me from any evil world views that my flesh must have desired.But, slowly, I was falling in love with the God who was bigger … [Read more...]

Confessions from Wild Goose 2015

“Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you maybe healed.”    – James 5:16 Bless me Father for I have sinned.The first time I spoke these words I was in elementary school. I was making my first confession, considered a sacrament and one of many important rites of passage in a Catholic’s life. I remember standing in line behind my Sunday School peers and their parents. In front of me loomed a large, intimidating wooden confessional. Inside a priest was waiting to hear … [Read more...]

Breaking the Church’s Silence About Sex Addiction, Trafficking & Recovery

Breaking the SilenceLast weekend I sat among a group of 70 pastors listening intently as police Sgt Grant Snyder described his work setting up sting operations to arrest men and rescue victims of sex trafficking and forced prostitution in Minneapolis.Snyder's work, as part of the Crimes Against Children Unit of the Minneapolis Police Department, consists largely of working with detectives to plot the arrest of men in the Twin Cities who are purchasing sex from children, mostly from … [Read more...]

The shortest verse

I remember being a kid and finding out that the shortest verse in the King James Bible was John 11:35, “Jesus wept.” I was fascinated with how short it was. I was a teenager when I realized the context, that Jesus was worried and heartbroken for people that they could not reach. The Beloved One was crying for their beloveds. Yet, sometimes people say that they are crying happy tears, not just being sad. I remember feeling that way when I graduated from high school, happy but also sad, crying in o … [Read more...]


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