Thanksgiving W/ Jesus

This is a sermon. I rarely write them out in manuscript form, and even when I do, I usually don't post them... Because mostly, they are not prose, they are meant to be spoken. It loses something in print.  I preach in a lot of incomplete sentences. If you're like me, it flows just fine when you're hearing it, but can be maddening to read. Also, I make up words. So anyway... at your own risk, and all that. This was the last in a November series called "Daily Bread." Since it was the day of our Th … [Read more...]

Narrow Margins

So. Nobody wins.The myth of scarcity, the fear of other, and the rhythmic force of silent money: that narrative wins races, and people lose. And while neither party has the exclusive rights to that narrative—we hear it from every corner—this morning’s results show us where, on the map, those tactics speak the loudest.And yet…  that fearful story won so narrowly, in so many places. Is that good news or bad news?It is bad news that, no matter who wins, half of the country wakes up with … [Read more...]

In All Kinds of Weather

fountain

Harry was finally talking to Cho Chang. Stars aligned. Fireworks started. The orchestra keyed up in the background.Enter: the awkward clang of Ron Weasley… who saw Cho sporting a Tutshill Tornadoes badge, and immediately got confrontational with her about her loyalty as a sports fan. “How long have you supported them?” he demanded. His implication is that she, like the common masses, hopped on the bandwagon only after “they started winning” and “became fashionable.”“I’ve been a fan since … [Read more...]

Not in the Fire, Not in the Wind

The following is from week 2 of the sermon series "Doors and Windows: Faces of Faith in Transition." Since many of you followed last week's conversation about "Mapping the Message," I thought you might like to see the product of all that series planning. I really enjoyed sharing some of the creative process, and I hope we can talk more about that soon!  Meanwhile, read on for some thoughts on finding that still, small voice--even when all around us feels like chaos. It’s official. Nothing is … [Read more...]

Holy Ground: A Small Place at the Center of Everything

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Genesis 28:10-19Jacob left Beer-sheba and went toward Haran. 11He came to a certain place and stayed there for the night, because the sun had set. Taking one of the stones of the place, he put it under his head and lay down in that place. 12And he dreamed that there was a ladder set up on the earth, the top of it reaching to heaven; and the angels of God were ascending and descending on it. 13And the Lord stood beside him and said, “I am the Lord, the God of Abraham your father and the God of … [Read more...]

The Turning Away

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PSSSSSsssttt. You guys. Somebody tell the Southern Baptists that the transgender crowd is not exactly queuing up to join their churches…Is exactly the kind of snarky thing I’m really tempted to say right now, just a few days after the Southern Baptist Convention voted to affirm a resolution condemning transgender people. Because really, telling the transgender folks to get out of the Baptist church? That’s kind of like telling the Portland hipsters to stop shopping at Wal-Mart.It’s almost … [Read more...]

The Art of Lazing: Your Summer Reading List

reading

Hey, you. Yeah, you over there: Posting your pictures of summer home improvement projects; the litany of outdoor activities, parties and marathons that fills your calendar; your Pinterest board full of landscaping ideas, cooking adventures, and craftiness; the ‘before’ pictures of your closet, about to become glistening ‘afters’ worthy of a spot in the Pottery Barn catalogue… YOU ARE WEARING ME OUT. Everybody knows what summer is really for.Reading.Hours and hours of reading.  Glorious la … [Read more...]

Check Yes or No: 7 Questions Not to Ask in a Pastoral Search Interview

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I was on the phone with a pastoral search committee a couple weeks ago—no, I was not being interviewed for a job (cause dang, that would be awkward). I was serving as a reference. I’ve done that quite a bit lately, and I usually feel like the person on the other end of the phone is going through a bullet list of things that 1) a denominational entity has given them or 2) they pulled from the employment handbook of the YMCA. Circa 1954. (Friendly? Clean? Christian? Check.)The conversation wen … [Read more...]

Love and Perfect–Wait for it–Timing

himym

Major spoiler alert—(insert Ted and Robin salute—Major Spoiler Alert!) If don't want to know how the HIMYM finale  ends, stop reading.If you're like, What's a bro code? Why are we suiting up? —keep reading anyway. There’s a spiritual thread here.Faithful viewers of the long-running How I Met Your Mother have always known they were in for a multi-twisted ending. You don’t play with the space time continuum like these writers have done— weaving past, present and future together with fantasy … [Read more...]


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