March 26, 2020

Depending upon where you live, your life may or may not have been altered dramatically in the past two weeks. Depending on how seriously your leaders are taking this pandemic; depending on the effectiveness of communication; depending on the early spread of disease in your area; depending on a number of factors, you may or may not be ‘social distancing’ or sheltering in place. Your local businesses and the rhythm of public life may or may not have come to… Read more

March 13, 2020

There are many unknowns here. There is unprecedented territory ahead, and nobody can say how long it might last. So if it does come down to canceling services at your place, here are some things to remember, and some ways to keep “being the Church,” even when you can’t be in the church building.  Read more

March 10, 2020

Like many of you, I’m troubled by many things right now. I’m not panicking– I am, in fact, still traveling this week. I’m in a hotel as we speak. I’m not engaging with people. But I have my concerns. As a parent, I’m concerned about germs in the close quarters of public schools; I’m also concerned about kids don’t eat well or have basic necessities when school is canceled. As a pastor, I’m concerned about how houses of worship are… Read more

March 7, 2020

I’m getting weird deja vu as I start this post. Sometimes things I write sound weirdly familiar, but as I have written nearly 1000 blog posts in the last decade– plus 2 books and more than a few hundred sermons– I don’t always know if I have written a thing before, or if I have just thought it/said it somewhere. Which is to say, I may have said all this before; but even if I have, it bears repeating. Especially… Read more

March 4, 2020

Full disclosure, I’m feeling more than a little salty that the primaries are set up the way they are and I didn’t even get to vote for any of the women in the field before they were out. It’s some nonsense that certain states’ votes get to count at this stage, and the rest of us minions vote the dregs several months after the fact. I’m sure Google could mansplain to me why that is, but I’m not in the… Read more

February 28, 2020

Temptation is a loaded word. Does it make you think first of standard-issue sin, like stealing, adultery, and murder?  Or do you envision a laundry list of vices– fattening foods, alcohol, and luxury items you don’t “need” to buy? For Lent, maybe we can reframe the word to bring it closer to our everyday lives. Because most days, temptation is less about doing what is wrong; and more about doing what is easy. If y’all remember, I failed Lent last year. Big time…. Read more

February 14, 2020

Well I asked for it. I asked my Facebook on this Valentine’s Day morning for “the greatest love song of all time” and folks showed up for it. There’s something about a music convo that brings people out like nothing else. The responses I got were as varied as you might expect… which tells me, for one thing, there’s no accounting for taste. Some folks listed songs that are also on my all-time faves list, while others made me cringe… Read more

February 5, 2020

I didn’t watch the SOTU. I know I should watch to know what we’re resisting, but I don’t have the stomach for it. And I don’t need to hear the concentrated rhetoric to know the message that comes from this administration in daily, systemic ways– ways that affect the actual lives of real people, and destroy years of progress towards racial and gender equality. Did I get the gist? Is that what you heard last night? Which is to say,… Read more

February 2, 2020

Guest post: Rev. Laura Ann Phillips I love sports.  I’m not great at playing any of them, and honestly prefer an elliptical or a yoga mat– but I love sports. When I turned 30 I celebrated by sharing 30 blog posts of 30 things that had shaped my upbringing, influenced me, or that I was proud of, in 30 years. My first blog post was about… sports.  I went to my first baseball game when I was six-weeks old, so… Read more

February 1, 2020

We are so blessed. Or maybe I should say, we are so “blessed.” The problem with “blessed” [picture air quotes here] is that we so utterly misunderstand and misinterpret what that means. Here in the richest country in the world, we authors of the prosperity gospel have come to equate “blessing” with the physical and the material. God has blessed us with a really nice house/car/retirement fund… or else, with good health, and access to all of the amenities (gym,… Read more

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