Category Archives: lectionary reflection

Love will tear us apart

The divisions that Jesus describes are growing pains, signs of the emergence of the kingdom of God. Discipleship stretches our souls to love more deeply, to forgive more recklessly. Discipleship should change us, stretch us, and there will be friction as we rub up against the tolerance of the structures that have formed us. These are the signs of the kingdom, Jesus tells us, so do not be afraid. God is willing and waiting to restore all things in God’s mercy, risking everything alongside you on the Cross, transforming its hard lines into new life through the Resurrection. Continue reading

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By faith

A word of encouragement for the ninth Sunday after Pentecost in Year C. The author of the letter to the Hebrews was not, to our knowledge, a theoretical physicist; although they might have been. To declare that “faith is the … Continue reading

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Gilroy, guns, and White anger

Red Letter Christians published a piece I wrote reflecting on the uncivil war simmering in the soul of America, one that breaks out all too often in acts of violence like last weekend’s tragedy in Gilroy, California. Continue reading

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When you pray

This was the prayer that first made me fall for Jesus, when I was a child. Of course, I learnt the expanded form that we use in worship; the one that we prayed, hands together, eyes closed, every morning at school assembly time (never at home). But even in its stripped down, barest form, as Luke presents Jesus teaching it, the world which this prayer conjures into being is enough to set my spirit on fire. Continue reading

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Prophets and privateers: by their fruits shall ye know them

There is a hardness to the grapes, and a waxiness to the skin of the pear. There is sawdust at the bottom of the bowl, instead of the dusting of peach fuzz that we expected to find. We have been fooled. The fruit is a fake. It is plastic and wood, made only to decorate the room. It is not even a still life. There is no nurture or nutrition in it. It is lifeless. It is a scam. Continue reading

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Do good. Don’t stop.

The seventy returned to Jesus excited and amped up, saying, “You should see how we owned the forces of evil! How we slayed in the name of the Spirit! We are on fire!”
And Jesus said, “Yesss. Awesome. You are amazing. You are undefeatable. I know, I know that the way of love wins (because, ahem, I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life). I know that you have it in you to do great things. But, not to rain on your parade or anything, but … Do not become distracted, even by your own indisputable awesomeness, from the way of love.” Continue reading

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Pentecost 2019: Come, Holy Spirit

The Spirit has been present since before the birth of creation, brooding over the waters of the uncreated deep. She breathed life into the nostrils of the first human animals, according to the old stories. She has never been far from us. The trick is to catch sight of the movement of her wings, to hear the vibrations that she creates, the rush of air, the breath of heaven. Continue reading

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