Monthly Archives: January 2012

I think this is how the Spirit works

Daily prayer, and daily prayerful reading are important faith practices for their own sake. It is necessary to carve out sabbath time to do these things, which turns out to be a wonderful thing to do — because it is time during which you don’t need to produce anything, or accomplish anything; time during which you […]

Breathing Blessings

In several scenes, during last night’s episode of “Downton Abbey,” the character of Will is suffering from damaged lungs following a battle in World War I. As I watched him struggle to breathe and heard the wheezing in his lungs, it hit pretty close to home. I remember experiencing that struggle and hearing that sound […]

For the “Nones” Among Us

In December, author Eric Weiner wrote an essay published in The New York Times: “Americans: Undecided About God.” It was one man’s thoughtful description of his search for God in our culture, but his reluctance to become involved in a faith community or congregation. I’ve quoted from the essay in a sermon, and distributed it […]

“I’m increasingly uncomfortable…”

“I’m increasingly uncomfortable with current images of God found in books and workshops that mix popular psychology with a theology wholly devoted to self-realization.  They seem to reverse the first question of the catechism I studied as a child, declaring that ‘the chief end of God is to glorify men and women, and to enjoy […]

A Deep and Terrifying Darkness

For those using the continuous reading lectionary that I’ve recommended, you come across this verse today; Genesis 15:12: “As the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram, and a deep and terrifying darkness descended upon him.” The phrase that has caught my attention, that I’ve been praying over, is: “a deep and […]

Night Prayer

Lord, it is night. The night is for stillness. Let us be still in the presence of God. It is night after a long day. What has been done has been done; what has not been done has not been done; let it be. The night is dark. Let our fears of darkness of the […]

Whaddya know?

The unsigned editorials of the “Richmond Times-Dispatch” are worth the price of the subscription. They are never predictable, so it is a joy to discover what they will say each day. (In contrast, I never read the editorials in “The New York Times,” because I know they’ll express a “liberal” view on their subjects, without […]


Today is 1-2-12, aka one-two-onetwo: January 2, 2012. The beginning of a new year always motivates me to think of new beginnings. I cull and reorganize books in my home library. I rearrange furniture in my church office. I choose articles of clothing to eliminate from my shelves, to give to FISH. I reset the […]