In Heaven As It Is On Earth

I wish I could get it across that what Jesus lived and taught has almost no relationship with the “hate-ianity” that masquerades as Christianity across the press, airways and religious institutions today. What should be a grace-infused, fully-life-giving, all-welcomed, heavenly-spaces-opened, mystery-explored, forgiveness and reconnection-enjoyed experience has turned into a “gotta hate gays, gotta vote republican, gotta be sure and send everyone who believes differently to eternal conscious torment” religious charade. Now, the “gotta-hate” group makes better headlines. And the “gotta send everyone else to hell” mentality makes for tighter cohesive groups where if we are in, we are really in. … Continue reading In Heaven As It Is On Earth

Memories and the Hope of Healing

As this brutal and oppressive summer finally winds down, I head outside to assess the shrubs, flowers and grass. Much of it is damaged.  Much is beyond repair. It will be a big job to change it, but it will look differently after I replant.  More heat hardy plants, those needing less water and attention. I will learn from this difficult summer, and honor those lessons well. But I will not stop gardening just because this weather all but destroyed the land, because gardening brings joy and life and hope. As I survey this situation, and start making future plans, the heaviness … Continue reading Memories and the Hope of Healing

Religion and Immigration

It’s time to talk politics. As a pastor, and as one who fully respects the separation of church and state, I will not endorse a particular political candidate. I will say, however, that one’s convictions must enter the political arena and guide decisions. The idea that we should leave religion for the private sphere only and ignore religious convictions in public discussions is simply ridiculous. That is like saying that our personal circumstances should be ignored in when making political decisions. If we were to do so, most of our debates would simply disappear, for most involve personal circumstances in … Continue reading Religion and Immigration

Change and LIkeability

I’ve been watching the political campaigns with a great deal of interest. I know our political system is cumbersome, expensive, tedious, complex and not overly fair. Nonetheless, it is free and open and everyone can express their opinions. I find this liberating and hopeful for us as a nation. Two words keep coming to mind as I watch what is going on: “change” and “likeability.” Clearly, many if not just about everyone are unhappy or frustrated with something going on at a national or international level. The very real crisis in the housing industry, scarily high gas prices, a ridiculously … Continue reading Change and LIkeability