Percolating an upside-down Kingdom

  Eleven year old Emily headed out with her mother to share “Take Your Daughter to Work Day.”  She met judges, assistants, and clerks who worked with her mom and especially enjoyed helping the security guards scan courthouse visitors. She went to some meetings but had to sit out others, so she walked around the […]

Priscilla, put on hat when you preach!

Somewhere during college, I began struggling to fit the pieces together. Growing up as literalist, I found it harder and harder to work the Biblical puzzle. For example, how can Paul say in 1 Timothy 2:11-12, “I permit no woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she is to keep silent,” when […]

Paul, Mar’s Hill, “Christian” Culture

When we moved to Tennessee, a friend said, “you must go to a UT football game- it’s like a religious experience!”  We tailgated and did the Vol walk, the band leading us in. It was fun. Now I grew up in Kentucky, and Big Blue Nation wears a lot of blue, you just notice the […]

Sent- “The Lord be with You!”

Sent on a Spiritual Journey into the World!   Back before cell phones, wifi, or even cable TV, we got bored every summer.  We invited fun. playing home-run derby with a wiffle-ball or riding our bikes over a little ramp through the sprinkler like Evel Knievel. One day, we were all down at Joey’s when […]

When it seems all is lost- love nudges us

In the year my Aunt Margarette died, and then my father, I began accompanying mother to Camp Nelson, Frankfort, Willisburg, and Rockbridge cemeteries. We cut lilacs, lilies, and Black-eyed Susans from her yard and placed them in coffee cans wrapped in aluminum foil. When mom moved into our home in Tennessee, we cut wildflowers from […]

Jesus, keys, and “loosening” power: beyond a theology of “no”!

Once upon a time, near a wide spot in a Tennessee road, lived Mrs. Grace. For forty three years Anna Grace taught algebra and calculus at the high school and played the piano every Sunday at a her little Methodist church. One afternoon Mrs. Grace dropped by church to get ready for choir rehearsal and […]

just one degree- Lent as recalibration

Lent begins with Jesus alone in the wilderness being tested by the Tempter.  Temptations rarely beckon us to do something vile, terrible or evil.  It’s unlikely any of you woke up laying plans to commit adultery, desecrate the sanctuary, or become consumed by anger.  Temptations usually just pull us a little off track.  I read […]