“A windstorm arose on the sea, so great that the boat was being swamped by the waves; but he was asleep. And they went and woke him up, saying, ‘Lord, save us! We are perishing!’ And he said to them, ‘Why are you afraid, you of little faith?’ Then he got up and rebuked the winds and … Continue reading Calming the storm
It may seem disconcerting to some that a 43-year-old man still would be trying to figure out what he wants to be when he grows up. I assure you, that realization — that I have yet to figure out exactly what I’m doing on this spinning rock — has been no more disturbing for anyone … Continue reading “When I grow up…”
I had the pleasure Tuesday of interviewing Pastor Billy Benson at Garland Road Baptist Church in Enid, Oklahoma. My favorite part of these clergy interviews is hearing how they discerned their call to ministry, and the path toward surrendering to that call. Benson was called as a teen, during an altar call at Falls Creek, … Continue reading Answering the call: How can we say ‘Yes’ to God today?
In my previous post I wrote briefly on the new Justice Department religious liberty task force, announced Monday by Attorney General Jeff Sessions. The AG's words in making that announcement, I wrote, revealed an intent steeped in fear and intolerance, and having little to do with true religious liberty: Sessions spoke Monday of a “dangerous … Continue reading Religious liberty: A lesson hard-won through oppression
Some weeks there’s just too much going on to pick one topic. With North Korea returning Americans’ remains, the federal government launching a “religious liberty” task force and the Pope denouncing the death penalty, it has been such a week. A return long overdue Last Friday, North Korea returned 55 sets of human remains believed to … Continue reading Honored dead, religious liberty and the death penalty: The week in review
This sermon was delivered at St. Matthew's Episcopal Church in Enid, Okla., Sunday, July 29, 2018. In reading this week’s lessons my mind was drawn back to a parable – not a biblical parable, but one I think is relevant nonetheless. It’s often, possibly incorrectly, attributed as a Native American story, commonly known as the … Continue reading Which wolf will you feed?
“The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, ‘Abba, Father.’ The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs … Continue reading The bonds that set us free
This week’s whirlwind of Trumpian treason — or at the very least, cowardice — in the face of Vladimir Putin, followed by the president’s furious backpedaling at home, reveals two important takeaways: 1) Trump is a pricey but easily acquired marionette, whose strings beg to be manipulated by ratings and the approval of strong-arm … Continue reading Breaking through the echo chamber: lessons in the wake of Helsinki
“A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, … Continue reading Sowing in fertile soil
Seventeenth century philosopher Thomas Hobbes warned of a state of nature when the ordering powers of mutual contracts are removed — a state of “continual fear, and danger of violent death: and the life of man, solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short.” For as long as humans have been human, we’ve been organizing into … Continue reading Trump and Hobbes visit NATO