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The story of P***ed-off Pat: channelling the anger of parishioners into missional transformation

In a moment of reactionary anger, I made the mistake of saying: “How can you talk to a priest in this way?” The moment the words left my mouth I knew the mistake I had made. Pissed-off Pat wasn’t going to let me hide behind my title or the respect that I assumed I should have, because the truth of the situation was that I had done nothing to earn this respect in his eyes. Continue reading

Posted in The "and then" Gospel | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Taking a risk

I sat challenged by Paul’s words and began to wonder how much I am limiting God in my own life and ministry. I realized that my prayers were focused primarily on the tangible things. Continue reading

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How do you sleep?

Biblical sleep is the laying down of our whole selves—body, mind, and spirit—in the presence of God, trusting that God will guard and keep us. Continue reading

Posted in Pop Culture Piety | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Trust God, trust in each other

A Bible Study conversation becomes an invitation: Trust God and Trust in Each Other – in meetings, in church, in the world. Continue reading

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Grandma is now sharing in God’s eternal life, and it’s not even just about that. It’s about the possibility of what our lives are for. It’s about a God who chooses to be powerful in our world because now and again there is an open heart that finds the capacity to say yes. Let it be with me according to your word. Continue reading

Posted in Only One Thing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

“Do you spit in the face of God?”

“So when we aren’t using our gifts to the best of our ability, we’re essentially rejecting what the Creator has given us. Isn’t that spitting in the face of God?” Continue reading

Posted in Everyday Christianity | Tagged , , , , , , | 11 Comments

The lappers

What does the story of Gideon’s army of 300 people have to do with our lives of faith today? How do we respond to the unconventional, unexplained or downright odd requests from God? Continue reading

Posted in Pop Culture Piety | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

August 25, 2013 14th Sunday after Pentecost

God grants us a great trust and authority when we are called. It’s quite unbelievable to me. How do we receive this trust? Do we cower away from it? Do we bury our authority under the guise of good manners and respect? How do we claim this authority that God has granted to us? Continue reading

Posted in The Preachers' Table | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

“Lent” as metaphor & model for the church today

We live in a time when most congregations and denominations find themselves well into their “forty days.” That is to say, we are in that vulnerable place where hunger is sharpest, resources all but spent, vision blurred and identity in doubt. We feel a growing desperation. So there is an important choice before us, one we need to address before and during any attempts at so-called congregational development. Continue reading

Posted in Congregational Development | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments