December 12, 2008

A few weeks ago, a horrific terrorist attack left a number of people dead and wounded in Mumbai, India. I didn’t pay a whole lot of attention to this–it was just another piece of bad news filling the newspapers and airways. My inner response, “It doesn’t really affect me anyway.” Then I got an email from my oldest son who has been doing some graduate work in France. One of his classmate’s father was injured in the attack. Although the… Read more

December 9, 2008

So, yesterday morning I write about my state of being so empty.  Yesterday afternoon, my son who lives in France phoned to tell me his youngest son, Samuel, is in the hospital in Fontainebleau with a high fever that they can’t bring down and a possible kidney/bladder infection.  I told Jonathan that he developed something like that when he was four or five but no cause was ever found.  Later, Jonathan phoned again and said that the pediatrician over there… Read more

December 8, 2008

It’s a tough, tough time for the nation.  We are well into a huge economic crisis and the people who are going to get hit the very hardest are those living on the edge with no reserves to fall back upon.  The more vulnerable ones live paycheck to paycheck, sometimes even taking out payday loans to cover emergencies–and those loans have unbelievably damaging interest rates, thus pushing already precarious financial positions into real calamity. No reserves–that’s the problem.  Nothing to… Read more

November 29, 2008

“Oh! You better watch out, You better not cry, You better not pout, I’m telling you why: Santa Claus is coming to town! He’s making a list, He’s checking it twice, He’s gonna find out who’s naughty or nice. Santa Claus is coming to town! He sees you when you’re sleeping, He knows when you’re awake. He knows when you’ve been bad or good, So be good for goodness sake!” The words to that song drive me over the edge… Read more

November 29, 2008

I’m working on hanging in. Just feel slammed by learning just a week ago that our church Administrative Assistant has a fast growing and always fatal liver cancer. No warning, symptoms only started a week before the diagnosis. Aggressive treatment may buy her some time. Right now, it seems to be harder on me than on her. She’s just been doing this work for the church for a short period of time, but we had already formed a good friendship… Read more

November 18, 2008

I finally finished all the Charge Conference reports on Sunday.  I really dislike forms–most of them don’t make much sense to the way my mind works, so having to work through multiple ones, and ones I consider very poorly designed, has been very, very frustrating. Tomorrow, the District Superintendent will be here and he, along with however many of the congregation show up (and I don’t expect many) will hear a few of those reports, they’ll vote on whether they… Read more

November 11, 2008

As I continue to ponder the challenges of being a pastor, I find myself really, really bugged by something.  I recently heard from a friend who is pastoring a small, struggling church in the Midwest.  She mentioned that she has only a 50% approval rate by the congregation and was not sure of her future in the church or in the ministry as an ordained clergy (she is not United Methodist, but is part of a denomination where she must… Read more

November 9, 2008

While I was working out in the yard today, on this gorgeous November afternoon after a glorious morning of worship at my church, I felt the tentacle of paranoia began to wrap around my soul and pull me into that place of darkness and fear. I’ve been re-reading the past few days the beautifully written book called “Leaving Church” by Barbara Brown Taylor, an ordained Episcopal priest who decided to leave her parish and her life as a priest.  Our… Read more

November 8, 2008

We are a bruised nation.  We’re bruised economically, we’re bruised internationally, but mostly we’re bruised internally.  We’re bruised because the uncivil discourse that characterizes most political campaigns bruises and soils our individual and national souls. While it may not be articulated in exactly this way, the sentiment seems to be growing: if people of local, state and national prominence can speak of one another so distastefully, get away with it and even win elections doing it, then we can get away… Read more

November 7, 2008

“Did you know that your headlights weren’t on?”  That’s the first question that popped out of my mouth after a frustrating 30 minutes trying to find a friend of mine who was supposed to meet me at a restaurant.  Her reply, “At least I was driving on the right side of the road.  Give me some credit!” She’s been living in England for three years, and had flown in for a short vacation.  All her plans were made at the… Read more

Follow Us!

Browse Our Archives