The Great Multitude of the Saints

Revelation 7:9-17 All Saints’ Day is a day I feel. It’s a day I feel in my bones, in the deepest recesses of my being. It’s also a day that I have a hard time talking about. And I think it’s because there’s something ineffable about it, something which can best be experienced, best beContinue reading “The Great Multitude of the Saints”

Life from the Lifeless

Exodus 17:1-7 “Is the LORD among us or not?” This, I think, speaks to the heart of the matter, not just for this particular story, but the grand story as well.  This is what was at the root of their worry when they found themselves between an army and a sea, this was at theContinue reading “Life from the Lifeless”

God the Liberator

Exodus 12:1-14 “Why is this night different from all other nights?” In the Jewish ritual of the Passover, this question is asked by the youngest child present. “Why is this night different from all other nights?” It is a scripted question, designed to help teach about the meaning of Passover, not all that different fromContinue reading “God the Liberator”

The Thin Place of Liminality

Genesis 32:22-31 I have heard from people in some form of recovery, usually from alcohol, and often they share a similar kind of experience. The first time that they are on their way to a meeting, or to a substance abuse counselor, is usually the most terrifying moment. It is a time in which oneContinue reading “The Thin Place of Liminality”

Ordinary Scene in an Extraordinary Story

A sermon delivered to the Altamont Reformed Church on 5 July 2020 Genesis 24:34-38, 42-49, 58-67 A story is told about a man who lived in a town by a river. The rains came and it rained and rained, and the river crested and before anyone realized it, the town began to flood, even worse,Continue reading “Ordinary Scene in an Extraordinary Story”

Sarah Laughs and Hagar Weeps

Genesis 21:8-21 Before there was a child, there was a promise. A promise which required a child to be fulfilled, but to two people advanced in years, unable to bear children, this promise nonetheless came. At some point, after he was done travelling, Abraham, then Abram, looked around, and considered the fact that the promiseContinue reading “Sarah Laughs and Hagar Weeps”

Laughable Hope

Genesis 18:1-15; Romans 5:1-8 Finished. This is what Abraham’s line was to be. Ended. Cut off. Sarah couldn’t have children, and their best hope was Ishmael, the child of Abraham and Sarah’s servant. But God says, “No, Sarah will bear a child,” and Abraham says, “Yeah, sure, bless Ishmael.” And so here we have threeContinue reading “Laughable Hope”

The Creative Space of Chaos

Genesis 1:1-2:4a Hendrik did not pay attention in the childbirth class. I know, I know, he wasn’t born yet, but still. We paid attention, we had books, I learned about timing contractions and when to call the doctor, and what to report to the doctor. We had a mental note of things to put inContinue reading “The Creative Space of Chaos”

I’m just regular dust: A reflection on Ash Wednesday

I’m not stardust. I don’t sparkle. I’m not made of the magical stuff from far off and distant places. I’m made of ordinary dust. The dust that is below my feet. I’m made of the stuff that this earth is made of. I’m a part of that cycle. My essence is not connected with somethingContinue reading “I’m just regular dust: A reflection on Ash Wednesday”

Why are you still a follower of Jesus?

Recently, a friend and colleague posed this question on social media. It’s a great question and one that isn’t asked enough. Particularly with all the misuses and abuses of Jesus and Christianity for causes which are harmful, hateful, and opposed to the very message of the Gospel. These are not new misuses and abuses, theyContinue reading “Why are you still a follower of Jesus?”