A Divine Covenant

Person contemplating the Milkyway. Image by skeeze on Pixabay

Have you ever "cut a deal" with someone? Why do we say "cut"? Although some agreements involve splitting hairs or splitting the difference, "cutting a deal" has a much older and much more dramatic origin akin to splitting hares. When God cut a covenant with Abram God had asked Abram to cut a heifer and… Continue reading A Divine Covenant

Worship as Giving Thanks

How is the place where you live promised land? While the Promised Land refers to a particular place, God's promise of a land to live in also applies to the place where you live. Ancient Israel had wandered in the dessert for nearly 40 years after leaving Egypt where they had been harshly treated. As… Continue reading Worship as Giving Thanks

Transformed for Boldness

Monarch Butterfly freshly emerged from its cocoon

Where is God in all this? If the glory of the Lord reflects in the ministry of God's people and in the world around us, some days I have problems seeing it. And you? The people in the Old Testament believed that if they saw the face of God, they would surely die. Thus when… Continue reading Transformed for Boldness

Palms and Passion

Only a few days separated when the crowds cheered and sang loudly and joyously as Jesus rode into Jerusalem until the religious and civic leaders had him hung on a cross to die. Our Palm/Passion Sunday compresses that emotional roller coaster into a few minutes. Come and join the parade, waving palm branches and singing… Continue reading Palms and Passion

Be Merciful

Woman slapped with colored dust

"Do to others as you would have them do to you." The Golden Rule, with various adaptations, appears in the sacred writings of several religions. The version as recorded in the Gospel according to Luke, may be the most challenging to fulfill. One can readily pray for those who abuse you without anyone ever knowing.… Continue reading Be Merciful

Blessings for Life

Pastor blesses person laying in bed.

Not once in over twenty years of ministry have I been asked to provide pastoral care for someone who received a raise or promotion. On the other hand people living on the margins—those who lost a job and dependent on our food pantry for meals or who weep over a sudden illness or death of… Continue reading Blessings for Life

Follow Akela

After a long night the men had caught not one fish. Not only would they go hungry but also their family and neighbors. As they washed and dried their nets and a crowd gathered around a teacher. The crowd pressed in on on the teacher, pushing him toward the shoreline. He stepped into one of… Continue reading Follow Akela

Enough Excuses

Why did translators chose the verb "come" for when God calls a prophet? To say: "The word of the LORD came to Jeremiah" sounds as if he received a letter, an email, or a text message. Are there better words to indicate the life changing transformation he experienced? The Hebrew verb in most calls, including… Continue reading Enough Excuses

Kirkin’ o’ tha Tartans

Piper and Tartans for Kirkin 2018

Put on your kilt and tam and get your tartan out of the closet. On Sunday, January 27th, we will celebrate Scottish heritage with the music of the bagpipe and a parade of tartans representing various clans who have contributed to the life of this congregation. Piping in the Tartans The tartans that we will… Continue reading Kirkin’ o’ tha Tartans

Unfinished Business

knight's helmet

A hospital chaplain decided that he could not wear a particular item of clothing because it was too risky. The item of clothing itself was not risky nor risque, for I regularly wear similar items, especially on cool mornings when I walk to the Recreation Center to swim or exercise. This particular item, a dark… Continue reading Unfinished Business