Moving through difficult seasons

On Friday,  the sermon I sent to the staff did not begin with my sharing our United Methodist principals around abortion. It does today. In seminary a professor counseled us to read the church’s official statements during difficult seasons, because these statements offer collective wisdom often born by difficult deliberations, something we can never do […]

Radiate Unity

Once upon a time, a pastor was trying to describe the Mystery of the Trinity to a group of children in the three minute window her church allotted for a children’s moment. Our United Methodist Discipline describes the Holy Trinity in our Articles of Religion saying:  Article I — Of Faith in the Holy Trinity […]

Pentecost: seeing halos around us

God Emboldens Us June 5, 2022             Paul Purdue The second chapter of Acts reads like a creed or is it a poem?  When Pentecost arrived, the church was together. and they saw something like tongues of fire.  A tongue of fire alighted and rested over each one of them. […]

Do not be afraid to not Know

Imagine yourself as Simon Peter about ready to lead the church. Peter may be the first Christian. The Gospels tell us Peter leaves behind his boats, nets, and fishing business to follow Jesus. For three years, Peter traveled from village to village with Jesus hearing Jesus preach. Like most first century believers Peter committed most […]

Suddenly we stare silently at the cross

The Palm and Passion Sunday lectionary texts can almost jolt us. We start singing loud Hosannas and suddenly we gaze upon the cross.  This week, the mystery of Jesus Christ’s humanity and divinity comes into focus: God is crucified.  Charles Wesley asked, how can that be? “Tis mystery all! The Immortal dies! Who can explore […]

How to live a life of prayer

I just remember I was alone, hungry, and cold as I bowed my head over my lunch. I don’t remember where I was eating or even what I was having…maybe soup. Still, the lovely smell pulled my face closer towards the bowl; as I leaned in steam rolled up my face. Cognitive psychology tells us […]

Mother Hens -vs- Foxes: embody justice

Our passage begins “at that time” or, in the New Revised Standard version, “at that very hour”.  “At that very hour” invites us to keep in mind what comes before our passage. Jesus had been teaching and healing, moving from town to town making his way to Jerusalem, when someone asked, “Lord, will only a […]

Embodying worship- doing faith

 Lent begins the smudge of ashes right in the center of our foreheads. Ash on your forehead may garner weird looks. The ashes sometimes sprinkle down from our foreheads onto our nose, mask, or collar. Younger children may wonder if the ashes are hot?  They are not! Once I forgot to quickly wash my hands […]