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Looking for a little help/advice/critique/etc.

The following is a rough draft for Sunday.  I'd appreciate your thoughts.  This isnt' where I was iniatilly headed.  Initially I wanted to have a 60something in my congregation and a a14 yr old stand and greet one another as Elizabeth and Mary, then read their respective parts of the scripture.  Now I'm not sure where or how that fits in.  Originally I was thinking about how unexpected Mary and Elizabeth are, how human, and messy this whole incarnation thing is and to awaken us to the messyness of it all and to rejoice in it.  Yet, I didn't get anywhere close to that and currently I'm a bit too close to "see" properly.  I'd really like your thoughts--please leave your thoughts in the comments.

One of my favorite things to do is to look for art, especially paintings that were inspired by the scripture we read each week. The paintings draw me deeper into the story. Each artist emphasizes and illustrates something different from the next. For example, so…

Altar time

As I walked away from the altar this morning I felt great joy and honor, and a wish to bring this to everyone. 

I fully believe that God is present all the time, that holy moments surround us but we are not awake to them.  Each time I kneel at the altar I am awakened--physcially, mentally, and spiritually.  As soon as I breathe in the wood, feel my knees on the hard floor, I am transported to a new place. I look at the cross above me and I am surrounded by the presence of God.  It is beautiful, awe-full, and tender. 

Sometimes I can only stay but a minute--feeling frightened, likely a time in which I need to stay.  Other times, like today I wanted to stay longer but wasn't sure of the time and didn't want to be interrupted, so I ended my prayer and walked away.

As I walked away, I realized that I am tremendously priveledged to have a key, an in to the sanctuary any time I feel the need.  I can come day or night it does not matter.  I wonder if others do the same.  I know of …

frustration with this process

Why do they ask unknowable questions?  Questions which far greater minds than mine have struggled with and come to no good answer.

I say, "I have an inkling that it began with free will but know nothing else."  Sin, that is what we're talking about.  I want to say, "I don't know and neither do you so why do we play this silly game so that you can decide if my answer is enough?"  Instead, I will come up with a fallible failure of an answer that I know we cannot possibly discern.  I will play your silly game because I want the status, the honor, you can give me.

How ironic is that?  Nearly every week I get up and preach that these honors men and women bestow upon themselves are nothing.  I preach that God chooses, prefers to lift up the lowly, the tossed aside and tossed away, those trampled on, those who men and women say are worthless.  Yet, here I am prepared to play your silly game so that I can  come back week after week and proclaim that God loves the l…

Reflections for the First Sunday of Advent

Luke 21:25-36 The Message



25-26"It will seem like all hell has broken loose—sun, moon, stars, earth, sea, in an uproar and everyone all over the world in a panic, the wind knocked out of them by the threat of doom, the powers-that-be quaking.


27-28"And then—then!—they'll see the Son of Man welcomed in grand style—a glorious welcome! When all this starts to happen, up on your feet. Stand tall with your heads high. Help is on the way!"


29-33He told them a story. "Look at a fig tree. Any tree for that matter. When the leaves begin to show, one look tells you that summer is right around the corner. The same here—when you see these things happen, you know God's kingdom is about here. Don't brush this off: I'm not just saying this for some future generation, but for this one, too—these things will happen. Sky and earth will wear out; my words won't wear out.


34-36"But be on your guard. Don't let the sharp edge of your expectation get dulled by…

Friday 5: Don't Stand So Close to Me Edition

Songbird writes: 

You see, in high school, I had a crush on my Chorus teacher. He was a young guy, and he had gone to college with some cousins of mine, and over the summer between 9th and 10th grade, we ran into each other at a series of pre-wedding parties, and I fell DEEPLY in like.  You?

1) Did you ever have a crush on a teacher?

I've always crushed  on teachers and professors.  In 1st grade I crushed on my teacher, Mrs. Fry.  I absolutely loved her and everything about her.  In 6th thru 8th grades I crushed on her brother Mr. Fry (no joke! it's a small world, especially in KS) as we learned history from him.  In high school I developed a major crush on Mr. Pappas who taught Psychology.  Then my freshman year of college I heavily crushed on my English professor--Mark.  I shared my poetry with him and he took an interest in my writing.  We went to dinner a few times and talked about writing, he took me under his wing.  I thought it was more but I was so wrong.  We stayed in …

AMC (American Movie Classics) Brillance

AMC has a brillant ad campaign this season...Story Matters Here.  Each time the commercial comes on, I have a little cheer in my head. (ok, not so much now since it is always on!)  I love this, this should be our/the church's campaign. 

That's it, I love it.  I might alter it bit for the church

The Story.
It.
Matters Here.

Hope's Story
Changing Lives
Here

I'd have to work with it but you get the idea.

Good job, AMC!  Now, can you replay the Godfather Trilogy during the day so I can actually watch it?

Inspiration from a disaster flick--2012

This Saturday, Merkin and I indulged in 2012.  Neither of us can resist a disaster flick (except Armageddon)--especially one that was made by the folks of Independence Day.  It was great fun even if a little disappointing.  Both of us were stoked to see the falling of the Jesus in Rio De Janeiro--it's an amazing landscape and to add disaster and a crumbling Jesus would have been amazing.  However, that was only seen from the small screen of a television set during a news report.
I did not attend 2012 for some insights about the end of the world, humanity, or the Christian faith.  I attended 2012 for some mindless fun and cool (albeit cheesey) special effects.  That said, there were 2 specific scenes of destruction that have stayed with me.  The Vatican crumbling down and the Washington Memorial nailing the president.

Yesterday was Christ the King Sunday.  As we proclaim Christ our King we get this whole kingship thing screwed up in our heads.  That Christ is king is ironic, its …

Ramblings from an ill, V saturated mind

I've caught the flu.  It stinks and I'm ready for it to be over.

However, today the SyFy channel is having a V marathon.  ABC has remade it and begins airing the new version on Tuesday at 7pm (central).  I was 11 when the original series aired.  I was fascinated by it.  There couldn't have been a better day for me to be sick--at least I got to watch the miniseries over again! 

It is just as compelling as the first time I watched it, even if the graphics are laughable.    I'm interested to see how they will change things with the new version. 

A few things I've noticed is that in the orginal the leaders tend to be women.  The main alien leader that appears is a dreadful woman who uses her sexuality to get ahead--of course she is sleeping with her boss.  She is as beautiful in her human form as she is vicious.  The leader of the resistance is also a woman.  She too is beautiful (and blonde--the evil alien is a burnette of course!) but uses her mind rather than her…

Revelation 21:1-8, A Sermon

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, the New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying,

‘See, the home of God is among mortals.


He will dwell with them;


they will be his peoples,


and God himself will be with them;


he will wipe every tear from their eyes.


Death will be no more;


mourning and crying and pain will be no more,


for the first things have passed away.’


And the one who was seated on the throne said, ‘See, I am making all things new.’ Also he said, ‘Write this, for these words are trustworthy and true.’ Then he said to me, ‘It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give water as a gift from the spring of the water of life. Those who conquer will inherit these things, and I will be their God and they will be my children. But a…

larger than life--a rant

I've become larger than life
but the bigger I get the smaller I feel
The more I want to be seen and less and less

The pictures I take reflect the beauty around me
caught up in it all I have my picture taken
and suddenly I can no longer see

See the beauty
for a minute I felt it
it felt good
it felt inside of me

So how does another picture
make the beauty fade so fast?

Like a caricature of who I once was
overinflated on the inside
but its gone inside and shrunk everything else while it's gone larger than life can hold
in my body

Now to shrink the outside
to grow up and not out
that has got to be possible

But then I see those pictures
and think it's just not possible
to make this caricature real
but I desperately
want to be in a picture of beauty
and still see me

I want my body to be able to hold my life and not take out my knees.
When we talk about the future of the church I want some specifics.

Ok, so I know that's not entirely possible.

HOWEVER...Diana Butler Bass spoke yesterday (perhaps my favorite, I think I might be a church history nerd) and pointed out that in psychology they say that the greatest predictor of future action is how people have behaved in the past. There fore, if we want a glimpse into our future then we need to examine which part of our church history to which we are most similar. When, where, who had similar issues, similar people, etc...

Diana Butler Bass then gave us a few suggestions as to what people are currently saying about that (she offered the examples and I'm offering some issues/people/way of life):
Early Rome--pre-Christendom, multiple faiths living together, a government that rules with violence and proclaims it's leader the son of god, wealth belongs to a very small few and most people struggle just to get enough to eat.Reformation--a time of great change in w…

stream of consciousness rant I

hipster—what’s up with that? in general this is a trend in the emergence. what about those of us who are not hipster and attempting to bring emergence to rural ministry, who says it’s “just for educated hipsters” I counter that this “emergence” needs to be everywhere or else it will not emerge. a sort of “duh” moment. but when will we stop trying to imitate all these other churches and listen to our own church? our own location. that is what most emergent churches have done. often the difference is that they have chosen their location. they knew what they were looking for when they began or trusted the path would become clear.

what about those of us “placed” in staid places? we need to break through the crusted layers that keep Spirit out. peel those layers and Diana Butler Bass would have us help them remember who they were when they began—the good and the bad, put it in context with the Church, and then know where to go.

this can be difficult because when people are comforta…

Christianity 21, Friday Update

I am so glad to be here in Edina, MN for the Christianity 21 Conference!



This is a quick moving conference and rather than wondering when the speaker will stop talking, we left wanting more! So far we have heard from:


Shauna Niequist talked about "currency earned through brokeness"
Carla Barnhill is our guide through weekend, giving us thoughts and bits of her wisdom as well.
Phyllis Tickle and Nadia Bolz-Weber "interviewed" one another which was not only highly entertaining but filled with LOTS of great information. Phyllis Tickle says we're in the "great emergence" which happens to be the latest "rummage sale" of the western church. Every 500 pears or so the western church has a big shift in which they reevaluate where they're headed and what they are taking with them. currently we are in the first "rummage sale" in post-christendom (no longer is the church and ...grrr!! i lost connection and didn't realize it! so i've …

lost in a morning haunt

this morning is pretty darn dreary. it's rainy and cold outside, the epitomy of a grey day. i was trying to get caught up on writing the daily devos and found myself falling asleep at the computer.

i laid down on the couch thinking i'd catch just a few zzz's, not being able to sleep for long on it. uh, not the case. i woke up 3 hours later! additionally, i had to pull myself out of the sleep. i hate doing that. they were some bizzarro dreams of a maze til i could finally know where i was. for a moment, i began to worry that the dream was real but finally i busted through to reality.

i wish i could describe the process better. i wonder--do others dream and wake like that? i begin deep in a dream, knowing it's a dream and that i want out of it. sometimes i can immediately wake up but there are some dreams that take longer to get out of and they warp into some bizzaro worlds before i can make it out and wake up.

now, that i had a LONG nap, i need to get workin…

haunted (?)

This is my first "haunted" posting. i don't think it's actually "haunted." I think it's rather sweet. This summer at the country church a wonderful, beautiful, amazing woman passed away. These pictures were taken at the country church's annual "Homecoming."

Homecoming is when all the folks who used to attend church here come back for this Sunday and it's a grand celebration with a huge dinner afterwards. I don't know why those folks only return for this particular Sunday but they do and as long as I'm here I'll support this celebration and welcome them home. These are a few pictures taken at the worship service.





This last picture the light changes and is directed right at the woman's daughter. it has been suggested that this is her spirit. There's likely a technical explanation but I happen to like this one. You can decide for yourself. I think it's a lovely.


being the parent of a teenage girl stinks

i noticed the fake smile
don't think i'm that dumb
it couldn't be missed
little miss

ugh! being mom to a 14 year old girl is hard. it's one thing when i'm frustrated with my own daughter and another when the urge to protect one of my girls pops up.

ugh! little girls thinking that they are better than they are and trying to make others feel as low as they can. why do they think pushing someone else down will make them better?

the mama lion in me is screaming with rage, i want to lash out at the little girl(s) who makes my girl miserable. what is wrong with me? is this normal? i thought i was the grown-up but i'm feeling like a raging 15 year old or something crazy.

haunted...not so much

i guess i'm not too haunted. i took on the challenge and have already failed to follow through and its only day 5!

i'm tired and cold. i really want to go snuggle under my covers.

tonight was spent watching Merk cheer and the both jr. high and JV boys stomp the Trojans in football. it was cold and then it began to rain/sprinkle. i'm not that hardcore.

Val said she was feeling crummy. she was warm to the touch. it's terrible but right now i'd be happy to have a day at home with her if she's too sick to go to school.

hmmm....i don't have any hauntings to write about today. perhaps tomorrow.

i can still recover and finish the challenge strong with the rest of the month.

peace out

A few thoughts on Mark 10:2-16

Mark 10:2-16 The Message

1-2 From there he went to the area of Judea across the Jordan. A crowd of people, as was so often the case, went along, and he, as he so often did, taught them. Pharisees came up, intending to give him a hard time. They asked, "Is it legal for a man to divorce his wife?"

3Jesus said, "What did Moses command?"

4They answered, "Moses gave permission to fill out a certificate of dismissal and divorce her."

5-9Jesus said, "Moses wrote this command only as a concession to your hardhearted ways. In the original creation, God made male and female to be together. Because of this, a man leaves father and mother, and in marriage he becomes one flesh with a woman—no longer two individuals, but forming a new unity. Because God created this organic union of the two sexes, no one should desecrate his art by cutting them apart."

10-12When they were back home, the disciples brought it up again. Jesus gave it to them straight: "A man who…

Happy October

October is my favorite month of the year. The colors are glorious--reds, golds, dark greens, orange, dark purples, and it smells of spices--cinnamin, nutmeg, a dash of pepper, ginger, and it's crisp and clean as well.

Pumpkins, costumes, scary stories, signs of the harvest, wheat stalks, hay bales.

Pumpkin lattes, pumpkin bagels, hot apple cider, hot chocolate with marshmellows floating in it, baked apples, chili, roasting chiles (i so miss Denver this time of year!), cornbread.

The sound of leaves crushing and crunching beneath feet.

Oooh, I LOVE it! Thank you God for autumn and October!

By the way, I am committing to blogging each and every day this month, and the blog theme is haunting/haunted (see the side bar) so it should be fun and even deep on some days.

As my wonderful Virginia would say, "coffee break's over!"

Sunshine Cleaning

We just finished watching Sunshine Cleaning. I highly reccomend it. It is sweet and odd. Painful and beautiful. Check it out.

What I didn't say

My daughter Merkin says I've gone soft. She can see it on my face when I want to say more but hold back. At my meeting with the DCOM, one of them said I'm not being truthful, I'm not preaching the word of God. I'm telling you that that really hurt--not just my ego but my vision of who I am as a preacher as well.

This morning I retold the story of Esther to the congregation. The sermon title was Holy Disobedience and I had planned on talking about how God calls us to be a part of upsetting the status quo when it is unjust.

I wanted to say that in our world 1/3 of the population is concerned with an epidemic of obesity and the other 2/3 is dying from starvation and malnutrition. In the United States, a small percentage of people have health insurance that they can actually afford to use. Many others have insurance but their deductibles and payments are so high that they still can't afford to use it. Many others, most of which are probably children, have no health…

Not "feelin" it

I'm not feeling much like a writer these days. I'm not really grounded either. The two are likely related.

It's been or felt darn near impossible to sit down and pray. I haven't been up for much lately. Yes, that sounds like depression. Perhaps it is. But I'm not feeling sad, I'm not crying. I'm just not feeling much of anything. I take an anti-depressant already. It's not a matter of getting meds. I'd love to stop taking the meds but jeez, if I'm having issues on meds I'm scared to stop!

Hmmm...I'm gonna stop blogging since I'm just complaining.

To be queen

I'll be preaching about Queen Esther this coming Sunday. Most likely I'll be borrowing part of the title of Karol Jackowski's article, Holy Disobedience in Esther. I love the idea/reality of Holy Disobedience so that will likely be my title.

However, I keep coming back to Queen Vashti. She was also a heroine, without her would Esther have had the courage to approach the king? Queen Vashti, like the legend of Adam's first wife, Lilith, does not bend to the whims of men. She is her own woman and will not be subject to their drunken and abusive requests. One of the texts I read today (I can tell you the title tomorrow when I get back to the office) talked about how it was Vashti's death that made the king more ready to accept Esther as she approached him without an invitation. Perhaps after experiencing the death of Vashti, he did not want Esther to suffer a similiar fate and was ready to accept her approach. Perhaps Vashti also inspired Esther to approach the king a…
This morning Jan posted this poem from A.A. Milne:

Halfway down the stairs
Is a stair
Where I sit.
There isn't any
Other stair
Quite like
It.

I'm not at the bottom,
I'm not at the top;
So this is the stair
Where
I always
Stop.

Halfway up the stairs
Isn't up,
And isn't down.
it isn't in the nursery,
it isn't in the town.

And all sorts of funny thoughts
Run round my head:
"It isn't really
Anywhere!
It's somewhere else
Instead!"
— A. A. Milne“Halfway Down,” When We Were Very Young

She also posted these questions:
Thinking of your childhood as a stairway, when did you feel (and how did you feel then)

1. at the bottom?
when boarding the school bus...i dreaded getting on the bus every morning. a boy from down the road would come and wait at my stop with me and the older kids would tease us that we were boyfriend and girlfriend. i hated it, plus it made my stomach drop to find a place to sit down. it was scary and agravating all at once.
2. at the top?
this might sound strange…

iPOD nano wins!

A week or so ago I canceled my appointment with my favorite tattoo artist, Jessie. Currently, she is book up through January/February! Yes, she is that good!

I was going to add prayer beads to circle my Mary, Blessed Mother tattoo and add a bit more color to the original. However, I canceled the appointment because I ordered an orange 16 gb iPOD nano--4th generation. (prices dropped when the new iPOD was released) I thought I should choose one or the other because we didn't have money for both. I was being fiscally responsible.

This made my husband, Joel, very happy. He's not too keen on my desire for more tattoos. He says he didn't sign on to marry the painted lady. He didn't sign on to marry a preacher but he's doing fine with that.

As my appointment date gets closer I get a little sadder. I was really looking forward to seeing Jessie, hearing stories, and adding the finishing touches to Mary, Blessed Mother. If I get commissioned this spring (I'm optimistic) I&…

rumblings in my head

i haven't been keeping up with the blogosphere lately. i just spent an hour (perhaps longer) going to my favorite blogs and reading. i'm not going to feel guilty for using my office time in such a manner because, well, i needed it. thank you all for blogging and sharing your worlds with the rest of us. i've really really missed you!

yesterday i interviewed with DCOM (district committee on ordained ministry) and during the interview i mentioned that even though i consider myself a writer i find it nearly impossible to write out my sermons (ok, perhaps not THAT bluntly but that i don't write them out) and that for the past year i haven't been able to write.

one of the Elders got this quizzical look of shock on his face. as if that was the strangest thing he'd ever heard. then i popped in that i do write daily email devotionals for the folks at church so it's not like i'm not writing at all. but i keep flashing back to that look on his face.

have i c…

Frustrations run amok

I've been a bad blogger and I'm not making things any better because I've come to blog out of frustration.

I shouldn't be complaining because Joel has been home more this week than any other week we've been here. Perhaps that is why tonight felt so exhausting.

Val has quite a bit of homework every night. It sucks. It really really really sucks. She's got some ADD issues but they're pretty much under control but it makes homework a huge struggle. She's a kid that needs lots of space and time to run off her energy but most of her time is spent avoiding actually completing her homework. She does ok IF i sit right by her and watch her do it. If I'm readying, working, or anything else she won't do it. It makes me crazy! I can't just sit there and watch her work or not work. EEEKKK!

There there's that thing about having 2 other kids to take care of and help with their homework.

In addition, Wednesdays are simply long days. I go to wo…
You Scored as The Kingdom as a counter-systemThis approach has been adopted by Anabaptist and similar groups who saw themselves as recapturing the essence of true Christianity in opposition to a "Christianised" society and an institutional church.

Kingdom as a Christianised Society75%The Kingdom as Earthly Utopia75%The Kingdom as a counter-system75%The Kingdom is mystical communion67%The Kingdom as Institutional Church42%The Kingdom is a Future Hope33%Inner spiritual experience25%The Kingdom as a political state8%

Book Recomendation: The Year of Living Biblically

I've recently finished The Year of Living Biblically: One Man's Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible by A.J. Jacobs.

I loved it. Jacobs is a witty and honest writer. It is a wonderful memoir of his spiritual journey. He writes as a "nominal Jew," meaning that he is Jewish by birth but isn't active in the faith. My favorite aspect of the book was "watching" his openness to the Jewish (and to an extent even to Christianity) faith and how it began to change his agnosticism--at least in bits and spurts. It was beautiful to see how he embraced his heritage and the change it made in his life.
As a huge bonus, Jacobs is hilarious! He shares his struggles as a father and a husband, and even as a son. I don't want to ruin anything but the word "helmet" will forever make me laugh any time I hear it. One of my favorite parts of the book is when he attempts a stoning. As a little preview, check out this picture (if you click on it,…

RevGal Friday 5: Child's Play Edition (Chucky not included)

Today’s Friday Five celebrates the spontaneous child in all of us… at least the one that we admire in someone else:

1) On a scale of 1-5, with 5 being I can’t do this now I am about to jump into a pit of plastic balls at the mini-mall and 1 being I can’t do this now until I can get all of the fonts on my blog to match – where are you? unfortunately, i'd say a 2. that might be a surprise to some of you but it seems that with each time i became a new mother i lost a bit of silliness and spontaneity. i remember playing with Merkin--finger painting, crawling on the ground, building houses out of moving boxes, making up silly songs. all of that got less and less with each child. it makes me sad that Merkin was the only one to get the fun mom.

2) What is the silliest/most childlike thing you have done as an adult? hmm...probably acting like a zombie in the grocery store. i'm not sure what it is about grocery stores but they just beg me to act like a goofball. when we lived in …

Thank you

Thanks friends, I appreciate your kind and loving words.

It's been a long day but it was good to say good-bye and be allowed to honor my friend. Amazingly, the tears waited until after the service and committal. I was able to sit in my office and cry.

I'm anxious about the morning, looking out and seeing where she'd normally sit.

However, I am truly blessed by the love and gifts we've shared.

I appreciate your prayers and thoughts.

Tomorrow will be another whirlwind of a day. After church there is an afternoon filled with fun and friends from the church. In a town not so far away, there is a water park which only costs $2.50 to get in! So a bunch of us are headed over for some water play and relief from the heat.

Thanks be to God! Amen.

Procrastination

Tomorrow morning I'm supposed to preside over a funeral of a friend. She was/is a wonderful woman and it was unexpected. I can't seem to get myself to prepare. I've spent a few hours with her family today, they're pretty wonderful too and trust me to properly honor their mother. I'm terrified to disappoint them. I've done a few funerals now and a couple of them have been for people I've felt close to but this one is different.

This woman was my "stand-in" mother. Her door was always open for me (and many others) to come in and hide. We could just sit in silence or we'd chat it up. I wasn't her only "kid," she took in more than anyone probably imagined.

I don't want to say goodbye. I don't want to show up for church on Sunday and know that she won't be there to sit with the girls and tease Joel. She won't be there later in the week to talk. She won't be there anymore at all. I just don't want to…

Update from the Karrsonage

I've failed to keep up on the heroes posts. However, I did keep up with it for a while, so I'm not going to beat myself up over it. It was definitely fun for the times that I managed to keep up with it.

It feels like I am constantly behind. It's driving me a little nuts these days and yet, I'm not doing much to "catch up." Life just moves fast!

My baby girl is staying with her grandparents for 2 whole weeks! I really expected her to come home before the time was up but right now it looks like she will make it! I'm glad that she is having a great time and they are keeping her pretty busy so it doesn't sound like she's missing us yet. I hope she won't. I hate the thought of her crying and not being there for her. It's probably one of those times/things in which it's more difficult for me than her. I hope so! After all, I'm supposed to be the grown up!

It's also been fun just hanging out with my 2 older girls. Last Thursday we went t…

Heroes: June 19 & 20

hoops & yoyo are my heroes! they brighten my day and the days of many others they make us laugh and giggle even when we're feeling blue

sometimes i need some heroes that can do just that
bring a smile to my face

hoops & yoyo, i love you!






RevGal Friday 5: Life is a Verb

Digh, Patti. Life is a Verb: 37 Days to Wake Up, Be Mindful,and Live Intentionally. Guilford, CT: Skirt!, 2008.
Jennifer recommended this book, which I got because I always value Jennifer's reading suggestions. The author of Life is a Verb, Patti Digh worked her book around these topics concerning life as a verb:
Say yes.
Be generous.
Speak up.
Love more.
Trust yourself.
Slow down.As I read and pondered about living more intentionally, I also have wondered what this Friday Five should be. This book has been the jumping off point for this Friday. 1. What awakens you to the present moment? getting drenched in the rain--it never fails to wake me up and pay attention 2. What are 5 things you see out your window right now? 1. tree, 2. hula hoop, 3. basketball, 4. flowers, 5. grass 3. Which verbs describe your experience of God? inspire, free, scare, love, accept, forgive, dance,…

Heroes: June 18

Dietrich Bonhoeffer was an incredible man, pastor, theologian, and writer. It feels strange attempting to describe him--he did so much with his life. He could have escaped Germany in WWII while teaching in the U.S. Yet, he went back knowing that he'd probably lose his life, which he did. He would not set back and take the easy way out in the face of evil.

His words demonstrate more than anything I could say.


There is not a place to which the Christian can withdraw from the world,
whether it be outwardly or in the sphere of the inner life. Any attempt to
escape from the world must sooner or later be paid for with a sinful surrender
to the world. (Ethics)The first service that one owes to others in the fellowship consists of listening to them. Just as love of God begins with listening to his word, so the beginning of love for our brothers and sisters is learning to listen to them. (Life Together)From God we hear the word: “If you want my goodness to stay with you then serve your neighbor…

Heroes: June 17

Gloria Steinem is one of my favorite feminists. Besides being one of the founders of Ms. magazine, she has devoted her life to helping women. In addition to that, she is a fabulous writer and extraordinarily witty. One of the first things I ever read of hers was "If Men Could Menstrate." I laughed til I nearly cried and then I nearly cried because it was totally true. She has been an inspiration to me ever since. Hopefully I will not violate any copyright laws but here is her article, "If Men Could Mensturate"
If Men Could Menstruate by Gloria Steinem
Living in India made me understand that a white minority of the world has spent centuries conning us into thinking a white skin makes people superior, even though the only thing it really does is make them more subject to ultraviolet rays and wrinkles.
Reading Freud made me just as skeptical about penis envy. The power of giving birth makes "womb envy" more logical, and an organ as external and unprotected as th…