Unquenchable Fire

Baptism font reflecting stained glass window

"When you baptize her, can I be between her and the font?" the girl had asked me. On that particular Sunday three girls would join the church, one by baptism and two by confirmation of the baptism that they received as infants a dozen years earlier. The girl who wanted to be closest to the… Continue reading Unquenchable Fire

You Want Me?

Did Mary have a choice? The angel Gabriel appeared to her and told her that she would conceive and bear a son and name him Jesus. After a brief conversation, Mary replied to the angel's offer saying: "Here I am, a servant to the Lord; let it be with me according to your word." If… Continue reading You Want Me?

Open Doors

Nine of the ten translations of the Bible on the shelf next to me relegate the 37th verse of the 8th chapter of the book of Acts to a footnote. Even my Greek New Testament includes it only as a footnote citing none of the oldest and most reliable manuscripts. Most (including the one translation… Continue reading Open Doors

Ministry Continues

You are witnesses of these things. — Luke 24:48 When writing reflections for a memorial service I like to list how the deceased had exemplified the Triune God; how he or she had demonstrated a love for creation and all of God's creatures, had connected people with one another, and had demonstrated divine grace and peace.… Continue reading Ministry Continues

Forgive Yourself

Sometimes forgiving other people is easier than forgiving ourselves. Jesus told a parable about a young man who ran off with his inheritance, even before his father had died. When he runs out of money, he longs to eat the scraps given to the pigs. His pride got in the way of reconciling with his… Continue reading Forgive Yourself

Forgiveness as Healing

How many friends do you have who would take you from your bed and carry you to someone else's home, make a hole in that other person's roof, and you would trust them to lower you through that hole so you could be healed of what harms you? Word of Jesus' ability to teach and… Continue reading Forgiveness as Healing

Day 22 with the Belhar

Water flowing down from mountains in stained glass

We believe … that God frees the prisoner and restores sight to the blind; — from the Belhar Confession And he answered them, “Go and tell John what you have seen and heard: the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the poor have good news… Continue reading Day 22 with the Belhar

Day 21 with the Belhar

Water flowing down from mountains in stained glass

We believe … that God calls the church to follow him in this; for God brings justice to the oppressed and gives bread to the hungry; — from the Belhar Confession When [Jesus] came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, he went to the synagogue on the sabbath day, as was his custom.… Continue reading Day 21 with the Belhar

Day 20 with the Belhar

Water flowing down from mountains in stained glass

We believe ... that God, in a world full of injustice and enmity, is in a special way the God of the destitute, the poor and the wronged. — from the Belhar Confession Then [Jesus] looked up at his disciples and said: “Blessed are you who are poor,  for yours is the kingdom of God. “Blessed… Continue reading Day 20 with the Belhar

Witnesses

Each and every day, and increasingly in our connected world, we leave clues that some people can read and assemble into a portrait that depicts what we deem worthy of our time. As a child might leave cookies to see if Santa had visited, many websites use digital cookies to track the pages you view.… Continue reading Witnesses