New Years and Resolutions – Do You Make Them?

The start of a new year is like an odometer rolling to the next ten thousand mile marker. There’s a big number followed by a slew of zeroes, and you don’t know where you will travel before the next rollover. … Continue reading

How Do You Handle Surprising News?

The angel Gabriel plays the combo messenger/home pregnancy test role twice in the opening chapter of the Gospel of Luke. First he visits the aged priest Zechariah when he’s serving in the temple and tells him he and his barren … Continue reading

When the Silence is Broken — Zechariah and Gabriel

How long will you wait for a response to your voicemail, text, email, marriage proposal, bid on a house? How long will you wait for a customer service employee to come back on the phone or for a doctor’s office … Continue reading

When a Piece of Art Won’t Let You Go

It wasn’t Magritte’s paintings of bowler-hatted men, the pipe that isn’t a pipe, or the steam locomotive puffing smoke, suspended in air, emerging from the walled-in fireplace that pinned my feet to the exhibit floor like a butterfly in an … Continue reading

Conquer Difficult Subjects and Reap the Benefits

A statistics course was a requirement for my undergraduate economics degree. Without an economics professor qualified to teach the subject that year, the econ majors enrolled in the psych department’s statistics class. After several weeks, the few could-be statisticians were … Continue reading

What You can Learn From a Cat

After an eight-year hiatus from cat ownership, four-month old Prisca moved in late last June. A refugee from some hardship, Prisca and I met at the local animal shelter where more than four hundred cats awaited adoption. Then named Sarah, … Continue reading

A Look at Liturgy: When Confession Shifts from “Me” to “We”

Confessions. Police officers interrogate suspects to try and get one. Counselors wait for the counselee to see their role in the problem and make one. Priests enter one half of the confessional booth to hear confessions of sin by individuals … Continue reading

Liturgical Leaves on Baptist Roots: A Year with the Church Calendar

The church banners are green, clerical collars have replaced flowing vestments, and the liturgy has settled  into the rhythm of the extended Ordinary Time post-Pentecost. The church calendar revolved one turn, and I’m back to the place I began the … Continue reading

What’s Your Response to the “I Am” Statements in John?

One of the distinguishing characteristics of John’s gospel as compared to the Synoptics (the gospels written by Matthew, Mark and Luke), is the Evangelist’s use of eight quotations of Jesus in the form of “I am” statements. In seven of … Continue reading

I Missed the Graveyard – A Look Back at My Time in Seminary

If asked to list my dreams for the future as an adolescent, attending seminary would not have been one of them. Partly because it was not an option at the seminaries I would have wanted to attend; mostly because it … Continue reading