Why Roots Was So Important: A Message for Those Who Didn’t Want to Watch it.

If I had a dollar for every time a well meaning person has said to me “my family owned slaves, but we didn’t treat them badly” or “My family didn’t own slaves, we fought for the confederacy to protect ourselves from northern aggression” or “slavery wasn’t that bad, being an indentured servant like my Irish ancestors was much worse” I could probably pay back my students loans and buy a house. Snopp Dogg did not want to watch Roots because… Read more

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

Three Reasons Why I am going to the Wildgoose Festival this Summer In 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,… Read more

Die, Die, Die

Do you ever wake up so sad because the world is overrun with violence, grief + disbelief in the healing power of love? and your own pounding (occasionally violent) heart threatens to beat itself out of your chest…   I am led to pray over my friends and family. It’s as if as I extend each blessing, I can already feel love  returning to me.   But then I have this feeling ARISE– it is so unsettling, I am not… 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,… Read more

The Time is NOW to embrace our not so menacing Shadow

  Shadows go in front of you, leading into your future and trail behind you, leaving a part of you in the past. They are clearest when we are in the light, and disappear when we lose ourselves in darkness. Kiersten White A shadow does not have a polar opposite; it gently embraces both light and dark at once. While light displays morning and darkness mourning, shadows show us that both of these extremes exist simultaneously and in relation to… Read more

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

Breaking the Silence Last 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… Read more

Re-engaging the Bible (aka the Mess)

“I stopped reading the Bible because I can’t handle the mess.” My friend let this out in the middle of Sunday morning House Church. It wasn’t a surprise. I know the struggles that she is going through. I thought it was a really concise statement about how many people feel about the Bible. And many times, when going through this, there isn’t anyone there to walk through it with safely. Over the last 2 years, as my house church has… Read more

Closed Hearts, Closed Minds, Closed Doors: A Letter to all LGBTQIA and Allied United Methodists

You are loved. You were made in the image of God. You are part of the same creation that God breathed God’s own breath into. You were knit together in the womb by God’s own hands. You are beloved. Our church is flawed. Our church is made up of people, and all people are equal parts loved and sinful. We live in a fallen world that is clenched by fear. We may not see the full inclusion of the whole… Read more

Poem: I needed a friend, not a know it all

Disclaimer: After Pentecost, at Park Avenue Baptist Church we are starting a series on Job. Many of us have felt real suffering in our own lives. I decided to push some of my energy into this poem to understand what Job felt like when Zophar blamed him. While in my own life, I’ve had less than two percent of my friends ever say horrible things to me around suffering, job did. After I lost so much, I only had 2… Read more