Pastoral Series

‘Tis the Season #16

Monday, Sept 19 ‘Tis the Season #16: It’s Complicated So, over the past seven weeks we’ve looked at how to keep your spiritual equilibrium during this political season.  We’ve suggested that God is asking us to fix politics – and then explored some special gifts we have to offer.  We’ve asked what matters in a…

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‘Tis the Season #15

Thursday, Sept. 15 ‘Tis the Season #15: separation of church and stateWith much wisdom and foresight, the founders of America built a “wall of separation” between Church and state. Thomas Jefferson was adamant that the state has no business forcing religion on anybody, and that state-sponsored religion is a bad idea.  I would say the…

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‘Tis the Season #14

Monday, Sept. 12 ‘Tis the Season #14: Whose Side is God On?In America, we have what appears to be an ever-widening divide between conservatives and liberals.  Which side is God on?  Or is there one God’s a little more fond of? Again, Abraham Lincoln can help us.  In his 2nd Inaugural, he told the truth…

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‘Tis the Season #13

Thursday, September 8 ‘Tis the Season #13: How Politics & Religion MixMiss Manners taught that there are two subjects to avoid in polite conversation: religion and politics.  How might we dare to talk about both, and how they intersect? When we say religion has no business talking about politics, we overlook two important truths.  If…

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‘Tis the Season #12

Monday, September 5 ‘Tis the Season #12: Labor Day of PrayerLabor Day, which nowadays is a long weekend marking the end of summer, and a good time for malls to spring big sales on us.  When it began in the late 1800’s, Labor Day was a day for parades seriously devoted to labor, public readings…

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‘Tis the Season #11

Thursday, September 1 ‘Tis the Season #11: Citizenship I’ve always been fond of Paul’s words from a prison in Rome, when he was frail and facing the end: “Our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ” (Philippians 3:20).  Paul often trotted out his credentials as a citizen…

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‘Tis the Season #10

Monday, August 29 ‘Tis the Season #10: a Candidate’s Faith?I’ve always been intrigued by the way a candidate’s person faith matters in an election – or doesn’t.  Martin Luther rather famously, and surprisingly, said (back in the 16th century!) “I would rather be ruled by a wise Turk than a foolish Christian.”  Would Christians today…

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‘Tis the Season #9

Thursday, August 25 ‘Tis the Season #9: Character Matters?Before we turn to the relationship of religion and politics, the separation of church and state, and ways Christians might think about policy matters, let’s weigh what kind of person we might want to vote for – or not vote for.  We probably would all agree that…

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‘Tis the Season #8

Monday, August 22 ‘Tis the Season #8: ReconciliationWhere are we in our series?  We’ve been looking at the gifts the Church and Christians bring to the repairing of politics in America, like humility and sacrifice.  After pondering a third such gift today, we will take a brief look at whether character and faith matter in…

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‘Tis the Season #7

Thursday, August 18 ‘Tis the Season #7: SacrificeA thrilling moment from my childhood that has stuck with me ever since happened on January 20, 1961.  Newly inaugurated President John Kennedy’s words rang out: “Ask not what your country can do for you.  Ask what you can do for your country.”  Fast forward to 2016: it…

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