Inner Peace

He said, “Go out and stand on the mountain before the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.” Now there was a great wind, so strong that it was splitting mountains and breaking rocks in pieces before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake,…

Truth-tellers (sermon for Sunday, April 28th, 2013)

Sermon text is Acts 11:1-18 When you hear the word “Truth,” what comes to mind? Is it a comforting word—something solid and trust-worthy? Is it attached to longing—something you seek for, or yearn for? Or is it suspicious—something that comes with a whole bunch of questions, like who is claiming to know the truth; what…

How will we sing…? (Sermon for 4-21-13)

the Scripture text is Revelation 7:9-17 A tribe of nomads marks a place where God was made known to them. They gather large stones and stack them carefully on top of each other—a painstaking process that results in a kind of tower—a mound. A mark. Every time they pass by it, for generations, they retell…

Love Rejected (Keeps on Loving)

“Jesus, you should leave Galilee, because Herod wants to kill you.” Were the Pharisees who brought this warning to Jesus trying to protect him, or threaten him? I wonder if it was any clearer to him than it is to us? Regardless of their intentions, Jesus’s response dismisses both the warning and the threat. “I’ve…

Clouds of Glory–Transfiguration sermon for Feb. 10, 2013

A cloud of glory.   That was always the sign of God’s presence. When Moses led the people of God through the wilderness, they knew God was with them because of the pillar of cloud moving ahead of them. When Moses met with God on Mt. Sinai, he was enveloped by a cloud, and spent…

Glimpse of Glory

When my parents were missionaries in Japan, they had colleagues that ran the gamut from liberal Presbyterians to conservative Southern Baptists, and while there were lots of differences, one that seemed most obvious  to my teenaged perspective was the differences when it came to alcohol. My parents enjoyed wine and beer, and always tucked little…

Tuesday, First Week of Advent

“We want to help….But unless we realize that God’s blessing is coming to us from those we want to serve, our help will be short-lived, and eventually we may feel burned out….How can we keep consoling the dying when their deaths only bring us more grief? The answer is that they all hold a blessing,…

Monday, First Week of Advent

I have pledged to join Pastor Jodi Haier in an Advent blogging discipline. We are both using the same Advent devotional with our churches (click the picture below for more information on the devotional), and we will both be sharing nearly-daily personal responses to each day’s readings. We’re excited to see how different our responses…

Mothering Love

The text for this week’s sermon is John 15:9-17 A small girl, maybe a toddler, maybe a preschooler, stands still watching a group of older girls. Their bright laughter and whispers drew her attention and she is enamored. She begins moving a little closer to the big girls, hoping they will notice her. She smiles…

Presence-in-Absence

Sorry for the late posting this week. The relevant text is John 15:1-8 I am the vine. You are the branches. I wonder how those disciples heard these words when Jesus spoke them. Here they were, an unexpected assortment of back-woods Galileans, drawn together into a messy tangle of community by their common attachment to…