The Adventurous Lectionary – November 16, 2015 – Pentecost 23

The Adventurous Lectionary – Twenty-third Sunday after Pentecost – November 16, 2014 Judges 4:1-7 Psalm 123 Philippians 5:1-11 Matthew 25:14-30 Today’s passages are challenging to those preachers who wish to include all four readings in worship. If you read the Old Testament/Hebraic scriptures, you must preach about them. Otherwise, you may perpetuate unhealthy and problematic [Read More…]

This Holy Moment: A Response to Sybil MacBeth’s “The Season of the Nativity”

This post is part of the blogger roundtable for the Patheos Book Club on The Season of the Nativity by Sybil MacBeth. The Hallmark Channel has just begun showing Christmas movies. Television and radio remind us that Christmas is coming, and entice our children and grandchildren with gifts whose cacophony, violence, and materialism drowns out the [Read More…]

The Adventurous Lectionary – November 9, 2014 -Pentecost 22

The Adventurous Lectionary – November 9, 2014 – Pentecost 22 Joshua 24:1-3a, 14-25 Psalm 78:1-7 I Thessalonians 4:13-18 Matthew 25:1-13 Today’s readings focus on the practical implications of following the one true God. The objects of our faith shape our character and relationships with others. Believing in God isn’t enough; the type of God who [Read More…]

The Adventurous Lectionary – November 2, 2014 – Pentecost 21

The Adventurous Lectionary – November 2, 2014 – Pentecost 21 Joshua 3:7-17 Psalm 1071-7, 33-37 I Thessalonians 2:9-13 Matthew 23:1-12 Today’s scriptures paint various pictures of God’s involvement in the raising up of leaders and in institutional and corporate decision-making. Does our image of God include or exclude those who differ from us, or create [Read More…]

Adventurous Lectionary – October 26 – Pentecost 20

The Adventurous Lectionary – October 26, 2014- Pentecost 20 Deuteronomy 34:1-12 Psalm 90:1-6, 13-17 1 Thessalonians 2:1-8 Matthew 22:34-46 Today’s readings point us beyond the individual self to identification with God’s Self and the well-being of others. Letting go of the small ego and its interests awakens us to the grandeur of the universe. Surpassing [Read More…]

Beyond Worry: Living with the Serenity Prayer – A Conversation with Amy Simpson

We are a society dominated by worry. In many ways, North Americans have never been more affluent, protected, and secure. Yet, no people have been more preoccupied by weather worries, despite the warmth of our homes and availability of weather predictions. Germs terrify us despite better hygiene and greater longevity than previous generations. Parents are [Read More…]

Taste & See: Becoming Part of the Advent-Christmas Stories

When I received my copy of Jan Johnson’s Taste and See: Experiencing the Stories of Advent and Christmas for the Patheos Book Club, I did a double take – Advent and Christmas already! Of course, as an earnest senior pastor, aiming at balancing excellence and stress reduction in my ministry and the ministry of our congregation, [Read More…]

Adventurous Lectionary – October 19, 2014 – Pentecost 19

The Adventurous Lectionary – October 19, 2014 – Pentecost 19 Exodus 33:12-23 Psalm 99 I Thessalonians 1:1-10 Matthew 22:15-22 “No one shall see me and live,” so God proclaims God to Moses. God reveals God’s glory to Moses, but it is more than mere mortals can handle, even those like Moses who “walk with God.” [Read More…]

Altars Everywhere: A Conversation with Chuck Swindoll’s “Abraham”

Chuck Swindoll’s Abraham: One Nomad’s Amazing Journey of Faith paints the life and faith of the patriarch in broad strokes. Swindoll’s text has many inspirational and practical moments. While I might take a different theological approach at many junctures, there is much to commend in his text, especially for the faith formation of conservative and [Read More…]

Adventurous Lectionary – October 12, 2014 – Pentecost 18

The Adventurous Lectionary – The Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost Bruce G. Epperly Exodus 32:1-14 Psalm 106:1-6, 19-23 Philippians 4:4-9 Matthew 22:1-14 This Sunday’s lectionary readings challenge us to orient ourselves toward God’s way rather than pathways of our own making. God treasures innovation and creativity, even coloring outside the lines; yet true creativity emerges when [Read More…]