Winnie the Pooh, Christopher Robin, and the Virtue of Doing Nothing

One afternoon, Christopher Robin and Winnie the Pooh reflected about what happens when a child begins school and starts to grow up. Christopher Robin lamented that he will no longer be able to respond to the question, “What are you doing?” with the words, “Nothing.” Growing up means schedules and commitments and fewer hours for [Read More…]

Why Theologians Need Spirituality and Spiritual Guides Need Theology

One of the most tragic dualisms in contemporary Christianity is the separation of spirituality and theology, reflected in the separation of the congregation and retreat center from the seminary. Over the years, I have found only a few theologians who are committed to regular spiritual practices and integrating their spiritual experiences with their research. For [Read More…]

The Adveturous Lectionary – The Fifth Sunday of Easter – May 14, 2017

The Adventurous Lectionary – The Fifth Sunday of Easter – May 14, 2017 Bruce Epperly Acts 7:55-60 Psalm 31:1-15, 15-16 I Peter 2:2-10 John 14:1-14 On the Fifth Sunday of Easter, the heart of the lectionary readings is John 14:1-14. This reading is both inspirational and challenging. It invites us to reflect on the scope [Read More…]

The Adventurous Lectionary – Fourth Sunday of Easter – May 7, 2017

The Adventurous Lectionary – Fourth Sunday of Easter – May 7, 2017 Bruce G. Epperly Psalm 23 I Peter 2:19-25 Acts 2:42-47 John 10:1-10 Today’s reading could be titled, “The Shepherd of Abundance” in which the preacher may choose to focus on the vocation of shepherds as seen in the Psalm and Gospel along with [Read More…]

Winnie the Pooh, Thomas Friedman, and the Paws that Refresh

As I wait for my flight at Logan Airport, I am pondering Thomas Friedman’s recent book, “Thank You For Being Late.” Friedman notes that accelerations are accelerating, and faster is going faster, and that while we are adaptive creatures, changes are happening almost too quickly for thought and responsible action to catch up. Whether by [Read More…]

The Adventurous Lectionary – Third Sunday of Easter – April 30, 2017

The Adventurous Lectionary – Third Sunday of Easter – April 30, 2017 Bruce Epperly Luke 24:13-35 Today’s reading highlights the Emmaus Walk. It could be titled, “Let’s Go For a Walk.” Or, “Walking with Jesus.” Jesus doesn’t come to us “in the garden” but on the highway, the seven mile stretch from Jerusalem to Emmaus, [Read More…]

Between Death and Resurrection: The Mystery of Holy Saturday

Between Death and Resurrection : The Mystery of Holy Saturday Bruce G. Epperly During Holy Week, most of us focus on the palms, the passion, and the resurrection. The movement from celebration to desolation and surprising celebration again characterizes not only Holy Week but the realities of a meaningful life. We can’t escape suffering but [Read More…]

The Adventurous Lectionary – The Second Sunday of Easter – April 23, 2017

The Second Sunday of Easter – April 23, 2017 Bruce G. Epperly Acts 2:14a, 22-32 Psalm 16 I Peter 1:3-9 John 20:19-31 Breathe! Think! Expand! These are some of the themes from this week’s lectionary readings. Though considered a “low” Sunday, the Second Sunday of Easter is a “high” Sunday in terms of homiletic possibilities. [Read More…]

Living Holy Adventure – Easter Sunday – April 16, 2017

Easter Celebration – April 16, 2017 Bruce G. Epperly Acts 10:34-43 Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24 Colossians 3:1-4 John 20:1-18 Matthew 28:1-10 Today we celebrate! Someone amazing and unexpected “once upon a time.” Could it happen again in our time? That is the challenge for preachers and congregants every Easter Sunday. “This is the day that God [Read More…]

The Adventurous Lectionary – Palm Sunday – April 9, 2017

The Adventurous Lectionary – Palm Sunday – April 9, 2017 Bruce G. Epperly Psalm 118:1-2, 19-29 Philippians 2:5-11 Matthew 21:1-11 Palm Sunday straddles celebration and suffering. The crowds that shout “Hosanna” in great celebration soon will fade in the background to be replaced by “Crucify him.” Life is joy and celebration; it is also sorrow [Read More…]