Take a Load Off

Maybe I'm too young to claim The Band as part of the soundtrack to my life.  But the death of Levon Helm has me thinking about the first time I heard "The Weight--" or at least the first time i paid attention--and well, i do believe it did some shaping of me that Debbie Gibson, Guns n Roses, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers didn't quite manage.A Coke commercial: A beautiful woman drives a convertible through the desert, with a happy and faithful looking dog. "The Weight" comes through in the backg … [Read more...]

Spinach

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When I was pregnant, I could not eat green vegetables. I couldn't stomach the tastes and textures, plus the heartburn that ensued was unbearable. (I often think that nature uses pregnancy to prepare women for motherhood in many ways. Including, perhaps, making us empathetic to a picky toddler's eating habits). So, I ate lots of fruit and took my vitamins, and hoped that God would work out the math on all the fingers and toes that were knitting themselves together inside me.Well, God (and the … [Read more...]

Dear Church: It’s Not You, It’s Us

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It is no secret: vocational ministers are burning out, leaving the Church,  and experiencing a rise in stress-related health problems.  I'm grateful that this issue is getting some attention lately in mainstream media, and also for the good work of organizations like The Lilly Endowment.  These folks are taking proactive measures to curb the trend. They not only help raise awareness; they help equip congregations and pastors with resources, better practices, and networks of support to keep eve … [Read more...]

GCB: The Good, the Gag-me, and the Gospel

I love the GCB. And it bugs me. And I love to let it bug me.Lots of people don't love it, and I kind of get why. For one thing, it is not super well-written. The main character is sort of flat. I don't think she's a bad actress, really...they just aren't writing her very good lines. Also, if you are a Christian, it feels (ALOT) like the show is making fun. Because it is.However, if you are a Christian who does not take yourself too seriously, it is pretty spot-on funny. Or if you are what we … [Read more...]

S*^! Jesus Says… Or Doesn’t

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I just dropped a book, picked it up, and then proceeded to trip over a bike rack, all in a span of about 7 seconds. And all in public, of course.Yesterday, I got my calendar wires crossed and missed a meeting with someone who drove nearly an hour to see me. Also, I spent most of the day lying on the couch, staring at the ceiling, while my kids played near me/climbed on me/came down from Sunday's sugar high.No, I'm not pregnant. This is just a glimpse of a minister's life the week after … [Read more...]

Songs from the Wilderness

I spent the morning of Good Friday roaming about in the desert with my dog. If you ask me, the desert is the only place to spend this day--literal or elsewise.Last year I wrote a piece about the proper sound track for Holy Week, and this year, the good folks over at The Salt Project featured the post.  They do beautiful work for Jesus and the world, and if you've never checked out their stuff, now's a good time.Meanwhile, my desert journey this morning took me back to the beginning of Lent, a … [Read more...]

A Sacred Discomfort

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Doing some stretches. Carbo-loading (translation: stress eating lots of chocolate and white bread). Having some extra coffee. Trying to ignore the beginnings of canker sores that will be nasty and painful in a few days' time.It's Holy Week, y'all.It occurred to me, in looking at my calendar for the week, I don't have any more time-consuming obligations this week than i normally would. In fact, i have fewer places to be/things to do, because we cancel some of our regular doings at church. … [Read more...]

A Handful of Change

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Recession, re-shmession.I know it's tough out there. I know people have lost jobs and healthcare coverage. I know firsthand that, practically overnight, some of our homes were suddenly worth nothing. Not even what we spent on new landscaping. I know that people have been displaced, heartbroken, cheated, and kicked around in general by the economy these last few years.But people, we spent $1.5 BILLION on lottery tickets this week. You and me. And only 3 of us won.Now, lottery is all … [Read more...]

Louder and Less Polite

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It is not news that people are leaving the Christian faith. Or that, increasingly, they were never a part of it. The staggering numbers of people that identify themselves as atheist, agnostic, or "spiritual but not religious" have us career Jesus people in a panic. Will there still be a community of faith in 20 years? In 50?I'm starting to change my mind about the liklihood of a 'yes.' Because in my conversations with people, it is apparent that it isn't God people have stopped believing in. … [Read more...]


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