Ask the Thoughtful Pastor: how do I practice Sabbath today?

Dear Thoughtful Pastor: You know how the Jews in the Bible were forbidden to work on the Sabbath? If I want to practice the Sabbath today, what is considered “work?” Would folding laundry be work? What about using appliances? An ongoing tragedy of religious understanding takes place when something that was intended as good and [Read More…]

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Daddy's Closet, Sabbath Rest, and Children in Church

It had been over a year since my father died. My sister and had I made multiple attempts to come to my mother’s house so we could go through his clothes and give them away. We found multiple excuses to delay this task. When we finally made it, we did reasonably quick work of the immediate tasks. [Read More…]

The Return: Church as Garden

For three months now, I have traveled, rested, prayed, written, reveled in family time, read, walked, worked in gardens, and regained health. I now return to the work I love and have missed, serving as pastor to Krum First United Methodist Church.  I thank this group of generous people who supported my time away.  I [Read More…]

The Church as Jazz Band

“My bags are packed, I’m ready to go . . .”  People of a certain age may recognize this song, “Leavin’ on a Jet Plane”—and the mixed joy and sorrow it brings. Yes, I’m leaving—and on a jet plane, but just for three months.  This is a long-planned Sabbatical which is intended to give me [Read More…]


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