Prayer Stones

One year ago, worshipers were invited to write petitions on stones and leave these prayers in a basket. Someone else picked up a stone and kept these requests and desires close to their hearts. Last Sunday, we brought the stones back to the sanctuary and offered the prayer below. Now, the prayer stones form a […]

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Prodigal People

Once there was an unseasonably warm fall afternoon in which a certain campus pastor just happened to be biding time in his office when the phone rang. The callers were certain parents worried heartsick about their oldest boy who was living prodigally far away from home. As unlikely as it would have seemed back then, […]

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On 9-11

Y Dios no te de paz, y si gloria (May God deny you peace and give you glory) ~Unamuno “I have not come to bring peace, but a sword,” said the Prince of Peace. How do I wrestle with these quotations, especially today? I think, “Peace is patriotic.” But peace must be more than the absence […]

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It is past bedtime and dangerously so

It is past bedtime and dangerously so, approaching that bewitching hour of demon tiredness which—with thick tentacles—grips little boys not quite two-years-old and shakes them into a frenzy on the floor. I am fully aware of this gathering menace, lurking just beneath our living room couch, where my son asks for “Mo’ books, mo’ books” […]

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Stirred to compassion

Isaiah 60:5, midrash Note: “Midrash” is a rabbinic biblical interpretation exercise, which often reads scripture with scripture, investigating how words are used in similar and dissimilar ways in other passages. The term, midrash, comes from the root of the Hebrew word for “seeking.” As such, I am seeking connection and meaning from a text and […]

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Bright Wings and Laughteryawn

Because the Holy Ghost over the bent world broods with warm breast and with ah! bright wings. ~Gerard Manley Hopkins My son, upon seeing the shade drawn over any window, immediately cries out, “Ooooo-pen!” Stretching out the vowel as he stretches out his arms, reaching for the unknown with confidence and curiosity pumping through his veins like […]

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Isaiah 40:8, sonnet

Isaiah 40:8 The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever. ***** The book of nature can be light and easy; just look at the sun’s rays gentle on the grass, or the song birds dancing an aerial chasse. Yes, the view from our window is so pretty. […]

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Cry Like A Dog

The following sermon was preached at New Dublin Presbyterian Church on August 17, 2014. “Cry Like a Dog” Genesis 45:1–15; Matthew 15:21–28[1] ***** You heard correctly: Jesus calls this poor woman a dog—a dog! Much like in our culture, the term in ancient Palestine was a derogatory slur, a racial epithet thrown at someone considered […]

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Thunderous Teachers

As teachers and students get ready for the new school year, I offer a reflection about the transformative power of a teacher on our hearts and minds. The link below will take you to the clip, which is part of a series at New Dublin Presbyterian Church called “Ninety Second Sermons.” As we think about […]

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Grace Enough

“Grace Enough” Preached at New Dublin Presbyterian Church on August 10th, 2014 Genesis 37:18–28; Matthew 14:22–33 ***** The summer before I went to college, my family took a trip to Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Once there, we hiked through a glacier national park until we reached the very starting point of one of the cold streams, […]

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