April 10, 2020

“Into your hands,” he says. “Into your hands I commit. Into your hands, I lay my spirit.” So we lay down too. Today we lay down and die a little For the suffering that didn’t go with him.   Into his hands we lay the sins of the world. The crime of every child born hungry when there is more than enough. The grief of every mother  left holding an empty blanket.   Into his hands, we lay  the burning… Read more

April 4, 2020

The other day, my 9-year-old scientist was telling me all the ways this quarantine situation is actually going to be good for the environment in the long run, and I was like, I am supposed to be this kid’s teacher now??  How’s everybody else doing out there? Here in Kentucky, we’ve been social distancing for 3 weeks now. If I’m an optimist, I figure we might be halfway through (at least this phase) of this thing. On heavier days, I recognize… Read more

March 31, 2020

If you’d told me a month ago that a pastor in America would be arrested for holding a worship service, I’d have called fascism in a hot minute. But these are strange days, and the times have called for a radical shift in not only what is normal, but a shift in what is faithful. What is faithful–and wise, and compassionate–in this particular time of contagion is to stay home and not risk the further spread of disease. But some… Read more

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

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