“Sir, we wish to see Jesus.”

From today’s gospel lesson, a group of Greeks went to the Apostle Phillip and say simply  “Sir, we wish to see Jesus.”  (John 12:21 NRSV).   This is the cry of my heart.

To the pastors who talk about “How to be a better spouse?”, I say “Sir, we wish to see Jesus.”

To the pastors who talk about managing your money better, I say “Sir, we wish to see Jesus.”

To the pastors who speak anger and hate, I say “Sir, we wish to see Jesus.”

To the pastors who inject their own political views and philosophies, I say “Sir, we wish to see Jesus.”

To the pastors who who piece together series of illustrations with no point, I say “Sir, we wish to see Jesus.”

To the pastors who believe they need to preach against those who have different sexual identity, I say “Sir, we wish to see Jesus.”

To the pastor who told me the suffering in my life was due to my sin, I say “Sir, I wish to see Jesus.”

To the pastor who said young earth creation was essential to my salvation, I say “Sir, I wish to see Jesus.”

To those who have told me I don’t believe in God, I say “Sir or Madaam, I wish to see Jesus.”

To those who have told me “You just need to forgive” without listening to my true thoughts or emotions, I say “Sir or Madaam, I wish to see Jesus.”

But, then, I look at mine own life, and I realize I have failed to show Jesus to others.

Triune God, help me to show Jesus.

Posted in Revised Common Lectionary | Tagged

Encouragement on Chapman Mountain


Image from Larry Wilbourn, used under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 .

I live on Chapman Mountain in Huntsville, Alabama.  It is a neighborhood of 1960s style ranchers built to house those who designed and built the Saturn rockets that sent humankind to the moon.   My neighborhood is currently going through a revitalization stage as the previous generation passes away, and a new generation moves in to renovate.

We have had three weeks now of snow and ice in our town, quite unusual for Alabama, and especially unusual for March.  The last ice is now melting away, but it was cold enough last night that a thick frost was on the trees and housetops as we arose to go to early service on the first week of daylight savings time. I saw at least three people out for an early morning jog.  I saw the fog as their warm breath met the cold morning air.  I was encouraged as I saw our revitalizing neighborhood waking up, even on this cold Sunday morning.

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Climate Change and The Image Within Us

Earlier this week, I posted this economic thought for the day.   But, in truth, I don’t agree with the statement.  It is based on an assumption that humankind is basically evil, basically selfish.  It assumes individuals will only take action if it benefits themselves.  That is in invalid assumption.  As humans, we have been created in the image of the Triune God.  It is an image that has been corrupted, and throughout history we have done great damage to each other and to the Earth on which we live.  But, I believe the core of who we are still carries that image.  We were created in God’s image to take care of the Earth, and that desire is still within is.  As we learn more about our impact on the Earth, I believe that image within us will show itself, and we will make the right decisions.  I have hope, not solely in science or humankind’s rational thought, but in that image that is within us.

Posted in Econcomics | Tagged , ,

Climate Change and Economic Theory

My economic thought for the day.

Climate change is clearly being caused by humankind burning more carbon based fuels than the Earth can properly handle.   We are burning more carbon based fuels than non-carbon based energy sources because carbon based fuels are currently cheaper.  In the long run, economics always prevail.  So, if carbon based fuels become more expensive than the alternatives, they will be replaced.  Hopefully, the crossover point will occur at a point that our planet can handle it.  If it does not, our planet is screwed.

Posted in Econcomics | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Kingdom of God, Kingdom Of This World

In my attempts to explain the Christian faith, I often focus on two relationships.  First, I talk of the relationship between the Triune God and humankind.  Second, I talk of the relationships between humans.

On transfiguration Sunday, I am reminded this is a simplification.  Christianity is about the intersection of two Kingdoms, the Kingdom of God, and the Kingdom of This World.  These are two kingdoms that are separate, yet intersect.   The Kingdom of God is ever present in our world, in every moment of every day.  Yet, the Kingdom of God is not physically in all things.  At moments, such in the transfiguration story, we see clear glimpses of this mysterious intersection.   In Baptism and in the Eucharist, we bear witness to this intersection.  But, in the events of life, this intersection is not always clear.  We question and we doubt.  We ask “Is God really present?” .  We ask “If God is present, why does evil exist in this world?”

This is the mystery, as the two kingdoms co-exist yet are separate.

Posted in Revised Common Lectionary | Tagged , ,

Psalms in an age of reason

The thoughts and the emotions of the modern world are led by reason.  We expect evidence for all things.  We base our lives on facts, not emotions.  We are constantly taught that our thoughts come first, then our emotions follow.

In likewise manner, the concept of time in the modern world is very linear in terms of existence.  What existed in the past no longer exists.  What will exist in the future, does not exist now.  We live in the here and now. All that matters is what exists at this moment.

This is why the book of Psalms has become one of the least read sections of the Bible.  The raw emotion seems so out of place in the modern world.   We look for reason, but we get emotion. We see a mysterious world where past, present, and future all co-exist.  We see a world where God exists in one place, as well as everywhere. We get confused, and we push the Psalms into a world of long ago.

The Psalms show raw emotion in a world where time and space intertwine in mysterious ways that we do not understand.  We experience anger, hurt, grief, and joy.  We see a mysterious Triune God of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.  We see the Son in the past, the present, and the future.  We see a kingdom that crosses time and space. We see a book for artists, not for those who use logic and reason.

This is a mystery, too deep to understand, but available for us to experience.

Posted in Philosophy, Psalms | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Good day in Alabama

My heart has changed much over the years.   Today, I celebrate with those whose same sex marriage will be recognized in Alabama.  Thank you for showing us how to love.

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