Ordinary Time – the Days that Matter the Most

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People who follow the "Christian Year" know that the Bible readings from December through Pentecost are designed to cover the story of God's restorative plan for the cosmos revealed in the person and work of Jesus Christ.  Today begins the long stretch in that same calendar called "Ordinary Time".Ordinary is a word we don't use much at all, and nearly never in a flattering way.  "It was an ordinary day" means that nothing exciting happened.  "Just another day..." we say, to describe the days … [Read more...]

Light, Shadows, Snow… and faith

When I say that we all need to learn how to read from the book of creation, sometimes people wrinkle their noses and wonder what I'm talking about.  This morning's journal entry might offer a helpful example, written after a morning walk with the neighbors up at the writing cabin.Good morning God...My heart is full this morning, grateful for the walking friends up here and the refreshing conversations when we do our mile together.  This morning though, most of my gratitude stems from t … [Read more...]

Embracing Loss – the paradoxical road to joy

In the marvelous little book "I Quit", Geri Scazzero writes, "once you end the pretense of superficiality and 'niceness' that characterizes so much of the Christian culture today, you will experience liberation, freedom, and a genuine body life that is truly a taste of the kingdom of heaven".The single little paragraph explodes with important truths for me and, I hope, for you too:1. Superficiality and Pretense are woven into Christian culture. It's not just Christians, of course, who … [Read more...]

Hope and Laughter – Yours for the Thaw

thaw - the sun will win

I'm driving east today from Seattle, into the mountains for some R&R (Reading & wRiting).  I've been east often during this past ski season, often enough to watch the snow pile up, to watch upper story windows become encased in snow.  Up in these coastal mountains, most of that rain that famously falls in Seattle comes down as snow, creating tons of beauty.  Still, enough is enough, and one begins to wonder, with the white stuff still falling in late March, when this frozen beauty will be … [Read more...]

Solitude – Antidote to loneliness

learning solitude means never being alone

As we enter the Lenten season, I'm happy to offer some practical advice on the various disciplines which will enable us to grow in our intimacy with Jesus, as we follow in his footsteps, learning to subject our will to the will of Another, for our own good and the good of the world.  I'll start with solitude.Years ago I had a conversation with someone about trust.  It was quickly apparent that we'd both fallen off the trust wagon, but in different directions.  She'd felt that God had let her … [Read more...]

Ready, Set, Lent. Why it matters – more than ever.

"And early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house, and went away to a secluded place, and was praying there." Mark 1:35I'm ready for Lent.Because Lent is a time of "retreating into the wilderness with Jesus", I say bring it on.I'm embarrassed by what Christianity is becoming in the west:Individualism is touted, at the expense of deeply committed community, through rap and poetry about love for Jesus, but hatred for religion, failing to mention that … [Read more...]

Be Still: Reflect Glory

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It’s been the theme of the summer as I’ve been privileged to travel and teach:  “Turn and Behold”, derived from a favorite passage from II Corinthians 3:16-18, where we’re promised that transformation isn’t our responsibility, but rather a byproduct of our falling in love with Jesus, of learning to continually turn and behold the glory of the Lord.  He’ll be changing us, we’re told, “from glory to glory”.    This realization that God will be changing me simply because I’m in relationship with Him … [Read more...]

Be Still: Reflect Glory

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It’s been the theme of the summer as I’ve been privileged to travel and teach:  “Turn and Behold”, derived from a favorite passage from II Corinthians 3:16-18, where we’re promised that transformation isn’t our responsibility, but rather a byproduct of our falling in love with Jesus, of learning to continually turn and behold the glory of the Lord.  He’ll be changing us, we’re told, “from glory to glory”.    This realization that God will be changing me simply because I’m in relationship with Him … [Read more...]


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