It Is about the Land. It Is Not about the Land (Jeremiah 32:1-3a, 6-15)

Jpeace

By Jennifer Peace Our relationship to place is so conditioned by our life experiences. When I moved to North Cambridge, MA, from the expansive West Coast, I got a lesson in the meaning of “near” and “far.” Walking around my new neighborhood, I greeted an old woman sitting in front of her house.“Did you grow up around here?” I asked.“Oh no,” she assured me, “I grew up way over on Sherman Street.” Sherman Street is about three blocks from where we were talking, but it is a … [Read more...]

Shrewd Christians (Luke 16:1-13)

VerityJones

By Verity A. JonesWe worry now, but we’ve been concerned about the economy for a long time. The economic recovery from the recession in America has been slower than we hoped, and people continue to suffer from the collapse of so many industries and jobs and safety nets.  Much of the pain seems new for large swaths of the American population. But in reality, we’ve been worrying about money forever.The August employment report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows a slight decline i … [Read more...]

I Know What God Looks Like (Luke 15:1-10)

Mathew Skinner

By Matthew L. SkinnerDo you want to see what God is like? It just got harder to do so on Wikipedia.Wikipedia still has an article called “God,” and it hosts a range of ever-changing perspectives. But a few days ago the site made God less visible when it deleted its short article on Antoinette Tuff, the bookkeeper who in late August may have prevented a massacre at an elementary school near Atlanta. Wikipedia merged her name into another, more obscure article.The Wikipedians’ bland deb … [Read more...]

It’s Not About You (Luke 14:25-33)

Lutheran World Relief headshots

By John NunesA life transition—like any effort to follow Jesus—is stressful: packing and unpacking, bidding farewells, refocusing from one set of commitments to a new future. It might be summarized in the early North African church leader’s interpretation of this Sunday’s Gospel reading from Luke 14:27: “Take up your stress and your tortures.” (Tertullian)This September, my family’s transition from the hazy days of summer’s more casual pace back into the back-to-school rat race is tou … [Read more...]

Whose Banquet Is It, Anyway? (Luke 14:1, 7-14)

Shanell T Smith Prof Pic

By Rev. Shanell T. Smith, Ph.D.  The upcoming March on Washington has been on my mind as I reflect upon this week’s Gospel reading from Luke about a banquet. I personally love banquets. You get to adorn yourself with the finest trappings, dance the night away, and if the food is good, that is an added plus! But what I find most frustrating? Knowing a banquet is occurring, and I have not been invited. “Did I do something wrong? Do I not meet a certain standard? Who did get invited?” … [Read more...]

The Power of Love (Luke 13:10-17)

Paul Lutter

By Paul LutterWe know neither her name nor the location from which she comes. All we know is that she was “a woman with a spirit that had crippled her for eighteen years,” and that, “[s]he was bent over and was quite unable to stand up straight.” (Lk. 13:11) We don’t know from the text exactly what causes this spirit to lash out at this woman. We do know, though, the power of this spirit is to slowly and deliberately destroy this woman’s life. Whether this spirit manifesting its wicked powe … [Read more...]


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