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Category: Speaking to the Soul

Waiting Turned to Witness

“When the Word became flesh,
it was the women 
    who knew what expectation meant—
the circle begins as it ends
in the witness of women.”

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Prepare the Way

“Call it healing; call it cleansing; call it conversion, call it transformation, call it what you want. It was the moment where I knew that I was no longer the person that I used to be and going back to that person was no longer an option.”

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Receiving Joy with Open Hands

“On those Chicago days when I worked as a chaplain in a hospital the small bites of chocolate were a balm to my soul. I did nothing to merit the candy, except to walk through their doors and open my hands. After leaving the hospital some days I carried the weight of an unexpected diagnosis, the loss of a loved one, or the uncertainty of how the days would unfold.”

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The Promise of Good News

“I think of the sweetness of my grandmother’s smile when she recognized the images from Isaiah. I recall the years that my grandmother’s love for God has shone in my life, even though I didn’t always hear or receive it fully at the time. She believed strongly in scripture and the power of asking for wisdom before reading holy words.”

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The Perfect Worship Service

“This would be a very important small service.  Though many people feel sad, angry or lonely during the holidays, not many wish to focus on it.  But the ones who come to pray their heartbreak with other people really need the space a Blue Christmas service provides.  So I was keen to get everything right….
It was not to be.”

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Haggai Speaks, Handel Answers

“The most familiar verses of the prophecy of Haggai are 6-7b, which speak of the reward the faithful, but first, there would be warnings of the seas and lands of all nations. Every time I read these words, Jennens’ libretto and Handel’s solo for bass play in my ear.”

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Jerusalem, Jerusalem

“When this is all over,
will we have the courage
to name our whitewashed tombs,
to heal the divides between us,
or will we choose to wallow in our self-righteousness,
whatever it happens to be,
Hold on to our outrage, whatever the source,
with ghostly white knuckles
and no room for reconciliation in our tightly clenched fists when this is all over?”

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Of Justice and Joy

“Even though most of us stand in a position of privilege and power relative not only to the people to whom Zephaniah was speaking, but relative to the vast majority of the world population, we can rejoice that God’s promise is for all of us—for all nations and all peoples.”

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The Third Light of Advent

“I am no less than I am, more human than I’d like to be. And I, too, wonder why God – if it is God at all – cycles me through the wilderness as though I require or deserve some sort of Lenten-tainted life. To change me? To remind me of my humanity? To teach me to love others? Sometimes – sometimes – it feels like more than I need and far more than I deserve.”

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What I love about Advent

“I love wandering with the wisemen. I love watching the stars with the shepherds. I love seeing the mess and dirt of a manger, and knowing Jesus is born right in the middle of that mess.”

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