News & Updates (Page 32)

Thanks Be To God Luke 23:33−43 Good morning! Or, I suppose I should say, Happy New Year! Today marks the end of another liturgical year. Our church calendar begins with Advent and ends today, with Christ the King Sunday. Can you believe that Advent is already upon us?! In this congregation, and the Presbyterian Church (USA) as a whole, weRead More →

Reclaimed Responsibility Isaiah 65: 17-25, Luke 20: 45-21:4 Well, today is Pledge Sunday. I hope that it was helpful for you to find a blank pledge card when you opened your bulletin this morning. On the other hand, there went your opportunity to say that you’d left it at home! I’ve often wondered why there is one time of yearRead More →

Principled Response Psalm 145, Deuteronomy 26: 1-11 and John 6: 1-15   So, there was an interesting conversation circulating around my clergy circle this week about the timing of this year’s Chanukah and Thanksgiving. This year, Chanukah and Thanksgiving fall on the same day. On the surface, you might just say “Chanukah’s early” and not give it another thought. ButRead More →

All Saints Day Baptism Sunday and Communion Sunday “Election Results” Daniel 7: 1-3, 15-18             Luke 6: 20-36 This is a particularly poignant section of Luke’s gospel. There’s nothing confusing or difficult to get our minds around. Following a night of prayer with his disciples and chosen apostles, Jesus came down from the mountain, stood on the plain with the crowd,Read More →

What Is Your Prayer? Luke 18:9–14 “Where are you in the Scriptures today, JC?”  For a year of my life, I was asked that question.  “Where are you in the Scriptures today?”  Charlie would ask me that question.  He was the founder and director of the religious non-profit organization I was working for at the time.  The place was calledRead More →

Competing Authorities Jeremiah 29: 1, 4-7             Luke 17: 11-19 I admire the trailblazers. You know: the ones who have an uncanny ability to figure out a new way of solving a problem, or have a fresh perspective on an age-old question, or who have a creative solution, a better solution, a unique solution – you know the type. They seeRead More →

Discerning Peace Lamentations 3: 19-26             Luke 17: 1-5 I think most of you know by now that I’m a third career pastor. I spent my 20s in banking, my 30s in marketing and my 40s (plus) in ministry. While I was in business school after my years in banking, I was offered the amazing opportunity to work at General MillsRead More →

 In Search of An Asterisk Jeremiah 32:6-15             Luke 16: 19-31 Well, last Sunday, we heard a parable of a rich man, too. We came to understand that Jesus didn’t speak in parables so we feel puzzled or paralyzed by the confusing details of the text. Jesus spoke in parables so that over time we would learn how to extrapolate theRead More →

Exposed Psalm 79: 1-9, Jeremiah 8: 18-9:1, and Luke 16: 1-13 As with most of Jesus’ parables, this one can be pretty unsettling. The seemingly disparate segments in the text can startle and maybe even confuse us. Really, are we to make friends for ourselves by dishonest wealth? And what does it mean for Jesus to commend the shrewd managerRead More →

Works of Art Psalm 139, Jeremiah 18: 1-11, and Luke 14: 25-35   Some of my fondest, early adult memories of living in Washington include going to the Phillips Collection for chamber music on Sunday afternoons. As often as I could get there, I’d visit the Phillips after brunch. My first stop was always on the landing of the oldRead More →