For 30 Pieces of Silver, and a Piece of Chocolate Cake

And Jesus gathered his disciples, those he loved best. A fresh loaf of bread on the table between them, like a thousand times before. He broke it and saideverything is about to change, so I'm going to give you something.This bread--this is the bread of life. A living sacrifice of simple grace. As often as you are hungry, remember me. Remember my words as the thing that gives you life; remember my compassion, walk in the ways of grace and peace, and I will be with you.Then he poured … [Read more...]

Go Prepare a Place: Holy Week and Political Trans-Shaming

If you haven't been following the Kansas politiscape, then you're welcome. It is a mind-melting, heartbreaking and head-banging-into-the-wall kind of situation, and if you live in another state at the moment, you can thank a Kansan for sparing you the disgusting details of our life right now. The short version is, that this self-proclaimed experiment in Tea Party trickle-down economics is absolutely imploding on itself, but nobody knows how to put the breaks on it without admitting it was a … [Read more...]

The World is Our Home: Terrorism, Holy Week, and Other Things We’d Like to Forget

If you know anything about personality typing, then I can tell you I'm an ENFP, and a 7...and you'll know that, among other things, I'm an escape artist.On a good day, that means I'm a day dreamer. In healthy expressions and moderate measures, I'm imaginative, creative, a visionary; I can see past the pain or discomfort of a present moment into a more hopeful future.In my dysfunctional moments, it means I bail out out of the present when it gets uncomfortable. In times of stress or … [Read more...]

Die Laughing: It’s a Lent Thing

It's all heavy sometimes. Life. Ministry. Lent. Winter. An election year. All of it. Some days it is all just heavy.My heart is especially heavy as Lent begins this year, with sadness for a family that suffered a terrible loss last week. I let that heaviness settle into Ash Wednesday. I let it preach the sermon on Sunday. I am learning to sit with it in prayer; I am holding space for it, indefinitely.I am an Enneagram Seven (the cheerleader! the sales rep! Joy, from the InsideOut movie!) … [Read more...]

Here is Your Son, Here is Your Mother

"Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman, here is your son,” and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home." --John 19:25-27Friday is usually full of good things. Cook-outs and road trips; family game night or movie night; the beginning of Sabbath; baseball, yard work, a … [Read more...]

Resurrection Matters: The Holy Unknowing

The insistence on a literal, physical, bodily resurrection is killing the conservative Church.The denial of a literal, physical, bodily resurrection is killing the progressive Church.Yeah, it’s a pickle.The Bible says Jesus died, rose again, and ascended to heaven. All tensions within the Body of Christ can be reduced to this one question:  Did he or didn’t he?That may not be the only question that divides people of faith. But most bones of biblical and ideological contention s … [Read more...]

Holy Week Survival Guide: 10 Life Hacks for Clergy

Deep breath. Inward Ommmmmmmmmmmm. It is Holy Week! Lace up your sprinting shoes, get ready to stress eat and drink way too much coffee, and tell your family that you will see them next Monday. No wait—Monday, you hibernate. Tuesday, for sure!  You will be down for breakfast on Tuesday. Or at least lunch… Something about that pattern seems not-so-holy, though. Sure, it’s going to be busy. You will need caffeine and adrenaline and the Holy Spirit to power through. And yet… we clergy types often w … [Read more...]

From the Crowd to the Cross: On Palm Sunday, Politics, and Religious Liberty

Palm Sunday--the gateway to Holy Week. Which is not only deeply sacred and important and full of all the meaning and all the feelings… but also the busiest week of the year for church folks. Dust the corners, print extra bulletins, shine the brass, eat your Wheaties, and for sure print extra bulletins. Gather early in the narthex and line up all the kids, and start the madness with a parade. We’ve been here before.Which is to say, I’ve got stuff to do. And I am so tired of writing about WHAT … [Read more...]

Still Time

For Lent, I was going write about Lent. Well and often. And then, I found that I didn't have much time to write.Which is ironic/telling/poetic--because my Lent sermon series is ABOUT time. How much we have, how much we waste; the blessing and burden of it; the things that hijack our sense of it... Time is complicated and beautiful and holds within its grasp the expanse of human experience and all of creation. We can totally cover that in six weeks, right?Right?But anyway. Here we are … [Read more...]