Extreme God

Now...

Four months ago, I was preparing to leave Phoenix. In early September, it was still pretty common to see the thermostat register 110-degrees. Of course, that was downright breezy after the July and August heat waves, which would sometimes reach 119. (But it’s a dry heat! Um…so is your oven).Fast forward to yesterday in my new midwest location. Wind chill of -16. Math is not my strong suit but I know there are a lot of digits that fall between -16 and +119. I’m amazed at my body’s ability to … [Read more...]

Let Freedom Ring: A Very Ducky Christmas Special

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I wish these public media storms would hold off until after Christmas. It’s really messing with my Advent 4 mojo. However—the Duck Debacle has crept into my head space, and I’m pretty sure the Spirit will not be able to show up with a sermon until I’ve got this out of my system.As you have probably heard, Phil Robertson of Duck Dynasty fame said some off-putting things about LGBT folks in a magazine interview. What he said should not have surprised anyone who knows anything about the family, … [Read more...]

Detour: Holiday Hospitality for Churches

detour

It’s the week before Christmas. You haven’t been to church in a year. Maybe in lots of years. Maybe you’ve only ever been to church for weddings and funerals, but this year, something compels you to seek a sacred connection in community. So you scan the newspaper ‘seasonal worship’ ads. You scour the internet. You maybe ask around the neighborhood.Having found a place that might be the place, you set out on Christmas Eve. Maybe you had to feed, dress and corral a herd of small children into t … [Read more...]

Ready

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If you are following along with the "Partners in Prayer" Advent devotion guide, you'll see that today's reflection is about the litany of 'I'm not ready' that we're all supposed to be sharing right about now. That piece was extracted from a longer blog post that I wrote two advents ago. Here's the whole thing. I'm reading it today, in the middle of moving and chaos, and thinking how much it still applies. I'm also thinking, hey...a self care day sounds pretty great right about now!I took a … [Read more...]

Bumpy Roads

isaac

I've got another great guest post for you today. Rev. Isaac Varner is one of my Arizona clergy friends (I sure do miss those guys!) and he just returned from a trip to Indonesia with Church World Service. I asked him to share a reflection on that experience, and here's what he delivered. 3A voice cries out: “In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. 4Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven gr … [Read more...]

Annunciation

hamlet

Today we have a guest post from Rev. Elizabeth Myer Boulton. She is, among other things, creative director of the SALT Project, "a not-for-profit project dedicated to reclaiming and sharing the beauty of Christian life through film, photography, music, poetry, and ideas."   And y'all...this little "Hamlet" video is the cutest ever. But it's not JUST cute. It is a powerful witness to the beauty of the gospel through the eyes (and voice!) of a child. Take a minute to watch, and then share around. B … [Read more...]

While We Wait

adventkids2

Holy smokes, where did this week go?? I cannot identify one thing on my calendar that took up a huge chunk of my time this week; and yet, here it is, Friday, my sermon's not done (as if it ever is), and I've only written one blog post this week. We will call it the black hole of Advent...when no matter how big a game you talk about living simply, moving slowly, and breathing peacefully, you somehow wind up out of breath, over booked, and way behind schedule.That said... instead of writing a … [Read more...]

Guest Post: Corn Mush and Depression Gravy

rachel guest blog

Thanks to Rev. Rachel Frey for this special Thanksgiving guest post. She is a minister in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) serving as a health care chaplain in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. A native Texan, Rachel has acclimated to the cold of the Great White North, but not to celebrating Thanksgiving in October, as Canadians do. She and her family will be celebrating US Thanksgiving this coming Saturday, giving thanks for the abundant life they share, even for jobs that require them to … [Read more...]

$*^! Jesus Says: The Christmas Shopping Edition

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An open letter (because the blogging world freakin LOVES open letters) to the American Family Association:Dear Affluent Straight White (Mostly Male) Christians:Nobody is persecuting you. And I mean, nobody.Encouraging Christians to boycott Radio Shack because the retailer features a “holiday” greeting instead of ‘Christmas’ wishes, is like refusing to wear pants because it’s cold outside.Or something.Here’s the thing: Jesus never in his life said, “Merry Me-smas.” He never mea … [Read more...]


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