Pastoral Series

Encountering the World of Scripture Series

Friends, Thanks for signing on to “Encountering the Wonder of Scripture.” We’re off! Enjoy, ponder, be puzzled, amazed, and grateful! And click “reply” any time to ask a question or share thoughts and responses. James   (1) Genesis 1:1-2:3 – Creation   The short version/Highlights:  In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The…

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Reconciliation: Born again

Reconciliation: Born againLast Thursday, we looked at the way ego digs out a wide canyon between us and God, and between us and other people.  But it’s not that you are inherently wicked.  You were born and made by God as quite noble, in God’s very image.  That image gets mixed up, misdirected, and twisted…

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Reconciliation: I Ask Your Forgiveness

Reconciliation: I Ask Your Forgiveness I hope you will let me apologize to you for last Thursday’s email.  The willingness to ask for and offer forgiveness is the key to reconciliation, isn’t it? In the email, I referred to Donald Trump’s statement that he doesn’t ask God for forgiveness.  My timing on this was atrocious,…

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Reconciliation: Ego issues

Reconciliation: Ego issuesJ.D. Vance, the author of Hillbilly Elegy, was featured on a recent (and wonderful) TED Radio Hour program on Reconciliation. Explaining why it’s hard for different Americas to learn to talk to one another, and understand and come together, he said “ego” is a big problem.  I think I’m the center of the…

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Reconciliation: The Oughtness

Reconciliation: The OughtnessI have always been a huge fan of the penetrating, eloquent, moving words of Martin Luther King, Jr.  I feel his prophetic, loving vision has never been more needed than it is today.  We also desperately need his example:  when people hollered abuse at him, when they struck him with blows, when he…

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Reconciliation: More than Forgiveness

Reconciliation: More than ForgivenessMonday evening we enjoyed a thoughtful, inspiring, and moving program on Reconciliation in the stories of the Bible.  Watch it here – an hour well-spent!  I shared from Genesis 37-50 – the riveting, emotionally charged, and theologically rich story of Joseph. Of his dozen sons, Jacob loved Joseph the best, gave him…

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Reconciliation: Stories of healing and forgiveness

Reconciliation: Stories of healing and forgivenessThe old saying is true: “The shortest distance between two people is a story.”  Jesus, the greatest teacher, leader, pastor, and counselor ever, refused to enumerate 7 key principles or 8 rules to follow.  When he did what he could to get people to engage with God, and to make…

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Reconciliation: Where we begin

Reconciliation: Where we beginThe reason reconciliation is even a topic to talk about is precisely the same reason reconciliation is so hard.  We may be smart or accomplished, but we are relationship-challenged – especially with God, with those where we’ve had some hurt, and with those who think or look different.  Which as it turns…

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A New Series for a New Year: Reconciliation

A New Series for a New Year: Reconciliation We begin our new year with a new series that will last through Ash Wednesday, March 1.  “Reconciliation” will be our subject.  The Christian message, and the Christian life, is all about reconciliation: our need to be reconciled to God, and then our need to be reconciled…

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Sorting Out My Faith: What Mary teaches us

Monday, December 12 Sorting Out My Faith: What Mary teaches usI remember one night when I was in college, walking around literally in the dark, trying to figure out if there really was a God, and thinking “If I could just hear a voice, if God would just show up and prove himself…”  Now I…

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