Goodness and Truth

Good and Truth Image

It was that lovely week of Christmas when utterly NOTHING happens at church, and we clergy types can lounge in our sweats for days on end, in recovery from the high holy days. Christmas had fallen in that same week of blessed cool weather that the desert gets, just every now in then, when the sun is still shining but you can actually wear a jacket outside without melting. It was like that. My mom was in town, and we had walked the kids over to a neighborhood park for some excercise.There was … [Read more...]

Your Jesus looks like a frat guy…

Your Jesus Looks like a frat guy Image

It was a day to celebrate diversity, a day to celebrate progress. It was a day to look forward with great hope and resolve. It was also a day to look with sadness on the deep divisions of race and religion running through the course of our history; a day to recognize the tragic and growing chasm between plenty and want.  And yet, for all that, it was a day to believe in the best ideals, the most beautiful landscapes, and the hard-working, free-thinking people that make up our great nat … [Read more...]

Another Dream

Another Dream Image ellis

Holy smokes. I am just getting around to reading Jimmy Carter's piece about gender inequality in the church. If you haven't read it yet, please do so today. Even if it feels like preaching to the choir in some of our circles, he speaks far more eloquently and broadly the truth that so many of us have been hollering about for decades, given his perspective from within the tradition. And also, he was the freakin President of the free world. Somehow, I feel this good word carries a little more … [Read more...]

$*^! Jesus Says: Wedding Edition

$*^! Jesus Says- Wedding Edition Image sabbath

Mary: Jesus, you aren't going to believe this. They have run out of wine.Jesus: I told you this was going to be a lame party. I totally didn't want to come.Mary: Yes, well, but i knew there would be some nice girls here...Jesus: ANYway...i guess somebody's going to have to make a run.Mary: Yes, I suppose. Unless...well, you know. You could do some party tricks.Jesus: Woman! And of course, I mean "woman" in the most sincere and respectful tone, and not at all the the … [Read more...]

God of the Facebook Meme

God of the FB Meme Image rainbow2

One woman's 'apologetic' as to why she is raising her children without God has been making the internet rounds this week. Reading it made me want to respond in some way, without engaging the crazies in the comment thread (do not feed the trolls). But I also don’t want it to sound like I’m arguing with her—or with people who share her beliefs.Because actually? I kind of agree with her.At least, on some points. Despite my own faith and vocation, I absolutely ditto the sentiment that schools … [Read more...]

The Rhythms of Grace

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Last week, I signed my 4-year-old daughter up for her first dance class. !!  I bought tights and leotards, and she's been wearing them around the house for weeks now. I'm trying to teach her the grande jette. Because, you know, it is always preferable to begin the (beginner, toddler, community center) class from a more advanced perspective than your peers.Oh, yeah. I'm going to be that mom. Consider yourselves forewarned.Thing is, while the 'retired' dance teacher in me is thrilling at … [Read more...]

The “Yes”es Have It

The yeses have it Image cool-door

I spent the weekend at a mountain camp/retreat center with other church leaders from around Arizona. If you've ever been to this sort of thing, you'll know that it involved a lot of 'sharing;' a lot of coffee; some dancing, silliness and general hilarity; and group-building activities involving things like rope, pvc pipe, and blue plastic tarps. (yes, we have pictures).Which is to say that, in many ways, once you've been to some kind of leadership retreat, you've been to them all. However, th … [Read more...]

Cold News

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The Phoenix area news last night was hilarious. Temperatures were to drop down in the THIRTIES overnight, and desert folk were losing their mind.I realize that if you are living through a Midwest winter, or a Plains-state winter--or pretty much any other winter that is actually winter--lows in the 30s with highs in the 50s for a week does not constitute a 'cold snap,' or a 'frigid blast.' But around here, it is the dang apocalypse.I watched neighbors run around yesterday, throwing … [Read more...]

As Often As You Do This…

As often as you do this Image rainbow1

Clergy burn-out rates are at an all-time high. All sorts of seminaries and foundations are devoting studies to the topic, trying to learn why the life of ministry seems to be growing less and less sustainable.I'm grateful that these studies exist, though i don't think there's an easy answer--or one that applies in every situation. I think that each pastor's personality contributes to how they approach ministry; and each congregation's personality contributes to how they treat their pastor. So … [Read more...]


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