• Confession of a sort

    October 31, 2019 by

    Sermon on Luke 18:9-18 (Keystone UCC [Seattle], October 27th, 2019) He also told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous and regarded others with contempt: “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee, standing by himself, was praying thus, ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people: thieves, rogues, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week; I give a tenth of all my income.’ But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even look… Read more Continue reading Confession of a sort

  • Tuesday Prayer: A prayer for a sibling church

    February 26, 2019 by

    Inspired by Luke 9: 37-43, John Wesley and the denomination that raised me Dear God: We convulse. We foam at the mouth. We are seized By this power that throws Us to the ground and mauls us and will not leave us. Today, I pray for my United Methodist siblings; for the church that raised me. They have been seized by a force that is tearing them apart; that has thrown them to the ground. None of our churches are perfect. Not one. We all have our demons to contend with. We understand what this is is like. It is… Read more Continue reading Tuesday Prayer: A prayer for a sibling church

  • Tuesday Prayer for 2/5/19

    February 6, 2019 by

    Inspired by Luke 5:1-11 Dear God: I look for you, the most, when I’m doing other things. When I am feeling overwhelmed or failing or lost I whisper “Oh God…” “Jesus…” And I don’t even always know how much I mean it. It’s like my pacing when I’m winded or my tight shoulders when I’m afraid or my stomach grumbling when I’m hungry. It’s a reflexive prayer. My heart speaks. “Oh God…” “Jesus…” And then… Sometimes… (take one step), you whisper back. (rest one more minute. take a real breath. pause. be present, be present, be present. this is all… Read more Continue reading Tuesday Prayer for 2/5/19

  • Sermon for Westminster Congregational United Church of Christ on their 140th Anniversary

    February 3, 2019 by

    Westminster 140th Anniversary Sermon January 27th, 2019 The two lectionary texts for today are two of the best known in the bible. I’m going to dive in to each text a bit today because, within these scriptures of the ancient church there are some very important things for the modern church to consider. Today’s text from Luke starts off with the words, “Jesus, filled with the power of the Spirit…” Just a little while later in the text, it says “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me…” In the Greek, the word used for Spirit is pneúma which means… Read more Continue reading Sermon for Westminster Congregational United Church of Christ on their 140th Anniversary

  • Monday Marks Reflection (1/7/19): Engaging in mission and outreach.

    January 7, 2019 by

    I’ve been doing this reflection for a while on Facebook and am going to try it here, too. A few years ago now, the United Church of Christ endorsed The Marks of Faithful and Effective Authorized Ministers through a resolution of the General Synod. Over the years, the use of these marks has spread more widely as the basis of lots of resources and more deeply as a tool for reflection and discernment with those in ministry or considering ministry in the UCC. I’d started to use this as a tool for reflection a year or so ago and, several… Read more Continue reading Monday Marks Reflection (1/7/19): Engaging in mission and outreach.

  • Candle #3

    December 19, 2018 by

    Dear God: “Because of” joy is delicious. It’s that gift that feels like laughing with a child. It is a song that makes you move. It is open armed spinning in a field in the summer. It is that meal that was surprisingly and deeply satisfying. It is the problem solved; that quiet morning before everyone is awake and the clock ticks and the sun is rising – brilliant orange, vibrant red and advent candle pink and you have no question that you Are alive. “In spite of” joy… That one feels like turning the world upside down. It is… Read more Continue reading Candle #3

  • Walls, wind and water

    December 17, 2018 by

    The wind wasn’t stopped. Nor were the birds nor the waves. The sand was blown back and forth and the same plants grew on both sides. It was only the people who were prevented from crossing across the border. I was with around 400 religious leaders from across the country last week just south of San Diego on the border between Mexico and the United States. It’s a unique spot where a twenty-foot high fence cuts the beach in half and goes down into the ocean. There were armed border patrol agents in combat gear. Other agents were on the… Read more Continue reading Walls, wind and water

  • Candle #2: Peace

    December 7, 2018 by

    Dear God: There was a time it seemed trite, sentimental, idealistic to talk about peace. The comfortable understand it as a right. The uncomfortable understand it as a lie. It is a problem of others in other places or a plaintive cry in the night or yelled out with a raised fist: “No justice! No peace!” When we light this candle, who is lighting it? When we light this candle, who might we be lighting it for? Amen. Continue reading Candle #2: Peace

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