Hubris and the Importance of “Memorial”

Remembering has never been more important, and yet forgetting has never been easier, especially for those distanced from the violence of war by time or geography.  Here's why remembering matters:In Judges chapter two we read about who came after Joshua and his troops fought:  "...there arose another generation after them who did not know the Lord, nor yet the work which He had done for Israel.  Then the sons of Israel did evil in the sight of Lord"  (Judges 2:10,11)  This is why, before Isra … [Read more...]

Your Religious Pursuits: Manic Spirituality or Peaceful Intimacy?

Manic: affected with or marked by frenzyCultural pluralism has intersected with capitalist consumerism, and a byproduct of it is what I'm calling spiritual mania.  It happens because the world in which we live creates tons and tons of wasted.  There's wasted packaging, wasted time spent on trivialities, wasted relationships that have become as commodified and disposable as an consumer product, and wasted environments, poisoned as they are by the entire system that has displaced creativity, m … [Read more...]

Why Caring for the Earth matters to Christ…and you

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" And yet what is the burden of the Bible if not a sense of the mutuality of influence, rising out of the essential unity among soul and body and community and world?  These are all the works of God and it is therefore the work of virtue to make or restore harmony among them"   Wendell Barry"This is what God planned for the climax of all times: to bring all things together in Christ, the things in heaven along with the things on earth" - Paul the ApostleI'll never forget an experience I h … [Read more...]

Redeem Everything: Learning from St. Patrick

As the weekend of green beer and cabbage approaches, it's appropriate to consider the rich heritage most of enjoy without even knowing it, passed down from the Celtic Christian communities of Ireland and Scotland during the dark ages.  You can learn about through a favorite book of mine, "How the Irish Saved Civilization", whose thesis is that when the Roman empire collapsed and the west was plunged into centuries of barbarism and fear, the bastions of sanity were the Celtic monasteries.  This i … [Read more...]

Powers and World Forces: Sugar, Salt, Fat, Coke, Kellogs, Kraft, Coke.

"For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness...." Ephesians 6:12This story on NPR caught my attention yesterday because it came just as I was doing something I rarely do anymore:  stuffing my face with chicken McNuggets from McDonalds while I was driving home from a study day in the mountains.  It wasn't the best of days.  Forgetting the computer cord meant was I done studying (or at least writing my sermon) earlier than I … [Read more...]

A Word for Advent: “Do not be afraid”

You can't go anywhere in the world these days without a reason to be afraid staring you in the face.   Here in Germany, people are worried about all the money they're giving to other parts of Europe as an attempt to hold the economic EU together.  This is taking it's toll here in a similar way that the fears of the fiscal cliff are taking their toll in America, especially as the clock ticks and we hear nothing other than how some elements of our political system are so entrenched in their id … [Read more...]

Two mountains, one choice. Choose Wisely

"...I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse.  So choose life in order that you may life, you and your descendants, by loving the Lord your God, by obeying His voice, and by holding fast to Him..."  MosesOn labor day I went for a stroll with my wife and youngest daughter up in the Cascades.  We were on the famous Pacific Crest Trail for a few miles (and met a wonderful man who had been hiking on it all the way from the California/Oregon border to our location over 450 … [Read more...]

Colossians: An antidote to cynicism and despair

I've been living in the book of Colossians a fair bit recently, diving in some mornings after coffee with God, and at other odd times during the week.  Over and over again, I've found myself saying, 'this is the truth that we need right now - at this anxious, polarized time in history, when it appears that so much all around us is either collapsing (think Egypt, Syria, Greece, the Eurozone), or built on untruths (think every campaign ad about to baptize your sensibilities).  From the moment we w … [Read more...]


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