In every dawn veiled by silent fog,
before the sun scatters its mystery;

In every dark crevice of earth’s womb,
before the seed breaks open to root;

In every gasp of the unknown,
before certainty cements itself:

a miracle of wild possibility.

How Shall I Receive You?

As an ass, playing the role of jester?
As the outlandish actor in the scene,
cast to make the comfortable laugh
and the disenchanted daydream?

As a stone, the unseen understudy?
As the patient watcher in the wings,
ready to leap up and shout one line
if only the leads will share the light?

As cloaks and palms, a garish set?
As the paint splashed underfoot in
greens, purples, blues, and golds—
the backdrop of a dystopian circus?

How shall I receive you on your way?
How shall I meet the holy ridiculous,
the laughingstock of stately triumph,
the momentary flash of impossibility?

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A Jar of Oil

The widow of one of the prophets cried to Elisha, “Your servant my husband is dead, and now creditors come to take my two children as slaves.” Elisha said to her, “Tell me, what do you have in the house?” She answered, “Nothing except a jar of oil.” (2 Kings 4:1-2,...

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The Measure of Humanity

“The question, ‘What is man*?’ is one of the most important questions confronting any generation,” began Martin Luther King, Jr. “The whole political, social, and economic structure of a society is largely determined by its answer to this pressing question.” King was...

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How beautiful you are, my love, how very beautiful! Your hair is like goats along the hills; your teeth are like shorn ewes that have been washed; your lips are like a crimson thread—so lovely; your cheeks are like pomegranate halves. (Song of Songs 4:1-3, abridged)...

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God heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. God determines the number of the stars, and gives to all of them their names. The Holy One lifts up the downtrodden, and casts the wicked to the ground. God covers the heavens with clouds, prepares rain for the...

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Delicious Desserts

Those of low estate are but a breath; those of high estate are a delusion. [Therefore] if riches increase, do not set your heart on them. Power belongs to God, and steadfast love belongs to you, O Lord. - Psalm 62:9-12 abridged (NRSV)   Popularity is the sweet dessert...

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Preaching in Lent: Mark My Words

If you're prepping to preach in Lent, I've outlined a variety of ideas for sermon series, including: Journey to the Cross, loosely modeled on Stations of the Cross; A Word for "You" sermon series on the Year B Gospel readings; a sermon series on #solidarity, using the...

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Preaching in Lent: Journey to the Cross

With the turn of the civic calendar to a new year, the appearance of Lent is quickly on the horizon of the liturgical year—beginning with Ash Wednesday on February 14th. I've outlined a variety of Lenten sermon series in past years, including: A Word for "You" sermon...

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Advent IV: Air

a breath: love a rising current: love an invisible stirring: love breathe, in and out to exhale is to live, to live is to change, to change is to learn, to learn is to release, to release is to soar, to soar is to love breathe, in and out until the last breath: love...

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Advent III: Fire

Light the lamp of gladness. Burn the fire of freedom. Bring candles aplenty so that no one in despair lacks comfort. Fuel thanksgiving like a beacon for praise. Spark goodness for warmth when the night runs too long and cold. Testify to joy, now and always, until...

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