screen-shot-2016-11-23-at-8-15-09-am

you are not lost

March 5th was the first Sunday of Lent. Before church, I met a friend at a coffee shop a few blocks from church.  As we were chatting, I noticed a little boy, who couldn’t have been older than three, who was standing near us.  He walked in a circle on the welcome mat near us […]

Screen Shot 2017-03-03 at 8.44.33 AM

the beautiful thing about ashes

Yesterday I wrote about where the ashes from Ash Wednesday come from: they’re the burned remains of the palm branches used on Palm Sunday the year before. Ashes are the product of destruction and death and demise. Ashes are ugly and useless. Ashes smear and stain. Ashes are dark and dingy. Ashes scatter and blow away […]

Screen Shot 2017-03-02 at 8.35.27 AM

ashes, ashes: what Jesus really came to save us from

Last night I went to St. Gregory’s of Nyssa, the small Episcopal church a few blocks from my house.  The small sanctuary was glowing with candles, and it was completely silent. People entered and silently filtered into their seats.  We nodded to acknowledge each others’ presence instead of greeting each other out loud. At 7 […]

Screen Shot 2016-02-25 at 9.27.23 AM

when God comes down the stairs

I’m staying with a friend in Minneapolis for a week in between speaking engagements. Last time I was at her place, it was early January.  I had spent a month with family over the holidays — resting, laughing, eating and doing very little writing or public speaking.  So during my time in MN in January, I […]

john316

on the monday after easter

It’s the Monday after Easter. As we face the days ahead, we will encounter the reality of daily life, which seems to have been suspended in the drama of Holy Week. We wake up today to find that the chocolate eggs are melting. The jellybeans are already stale. The lilies are wilting. The pastel decorations […]

rsz_cross

simon says

Every year when Lent rolls around, I anticipate Easter, but I dread the six weeks in between — weeks that feel more like deprivation than anticipation. I solemnly put ashes on my forehead on Ash Wednesday, and then decide to fast from something for 40 days. To me, Ash Wednesday feels like Groundhog’s Day, if […]