Putting the Lord to the Test (Sermon)

This is an adapted form of the sermon I preached this morning, the First Sunday in Lent. The gospel text was Luke 4:1-13.  When I think about this gospel story, I often picture Jesus sitting in the desert, and then the devil arrives, walking close to him, whispering temptation after temptation in his ear. And … Continue reading Putting the Lord to the Test (Sermon)

My Story of Sexual Harrassment

When I was in seminary, I was not always the nicest person. I was young and grumpy, and sometimes I said and did things that were taken as cruel. I'm not proud of this -- I hope that I've grown out of a lot of it. But there was one instance that has been on … Continue reading My Story of Sexual Harrassment

Yes, And…

This is an adapted form of the sermon I preached this morning, the day called The Holy Trinity. We also celebrated the Sacrament of Holy Baptism with two children this morning. I've changed their first names in this blog, but their middle name is the same. The readings this morning were Isaiah 6:1-8, Romans 8:12-17, … Continue reading Yes, And…

Christmas Poem XV: “In Bethle’em’s Sky”

Every year, I write a poem for Christmas, and include it in my Christmas cards to friends and family. For the days leading up to Christmas, I'm publishing all of my Christmas poems here, as a kind of Advent calendar. Today's poem was written in 2006. It's a bit autobiographical, about a long walk I … Continue reading Christmas Poem XV: “In Bethle’em’s Sky”

The Kingdom Will Be Taken Away from You

This is an adapted form of the sermon I preached this morning. The gospel text was Matthew 21:33-46. Sometimes a good way to interpret scripture is through other scripture. So before I get to today’s gospel, I’d like you to recall another story, from the Gospel of Luke. The angel Gabriel was sent by God … Continue reading The Kingdom Will Be Taken Away from You

God’s Alternative to Comparisons

This is an adapted version of the sermon I preached this morning. The gospel text was Matthew 20:1-16.  Three brief stories. Story One. One December many years ago, a church youth group learned about a family in their community that was in very bad financial straits. There were some young children in this family, and … Continue reading God’s Alternative to Comparisons

Forgiving an $8,000 Debt

This is an adapted form of the sermon I preached this morning. The gospel lectionary text was Matthew 18:21-35.  Forgiveness is hard. It’s challenging. Let’s look in the gospel. Peter asks Jesus, “Lord, if someone sins against me, how often do I have to forgive? Seven times?” Ah-ah. Nope. Not seven. Seventy-seven. In fact, the … Continue reading Forgiving an $8,000 Debt