Archives for August 2009

The truth that makes us free

Jesus seems so cranky with the religious leaders. (They deserved it; they were, after all, plotting to kill him). But in the midst of his being confrontive, he says something really important for all of us to hear. It’s about how we get sucked into listening to lying suggestions that pull us away from what […]

Looking for a Sand Box

I’m back to writing in the sand (John 8.1-20) as I watch some brothers and sisters begin to leave the ELCA. I will miss them deeply. Some burdens are so heavy to bear.

Out of the sand and off running

So I spent some time the past couple of days writing in the sand… metaphorically speaking, that is. Guess a blogger preacher must practice what she blogs. Mostly what I mean by “writing in the sand” is being silent and taking time to reflect on the things that are churning inside and outside, noticing where […]

Writing in the sand

(John 8.1-20 continued)My Church, my denomination (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America), only a small corner in the larger Church, yet insistently connected to the whole, is seized with pain. And much of the world, believer and unbeliever, is watching, pointing, shaking heads, cheering, jeering. It will make headlines. Pithy slogans on cable news. Slashing ink […]

Execution time

(John 8.1-20 continued)Okay. I admit it; I am judgmental. I condemned every single one of them. I didn’t care where they came from. I didn’t give them a hearing, no less a fair trial. I saw no future life for them. I had no thought for my own sinfulness…except for what I must have neglected […]

Jesus hits the target.

(John 8.1-20 continued)Jesus said to them, “Let anyone among you who is without sin throw the first stone at her.” And once again he bent down and wrote on the ground. When they heard it, they went away one by one, beginning with the elders. Discernment (what Jesus did) as opposed to judgmentalism (what the […]

The real target

(John 8 continued.) So the religious leaders hurled a dart at Jesus: “Now what do you say?” The downfall of Jesus was the main target of the religious leaders, and if this woman got caught in the fray, well so be it… Their trap for Jesus was probably this: if Jesus answered that the woman […]

A target

Have you ever felt judged? Even to the point that, if you tried to say anything in your defense, it would be useless? Perhaps the judgment had some semblance of validity, but the harshness of someone’s negative assumptions about you, skewing the truth, gave no room to affirm what’s positive. Perhaps you were simply an […]

Doubting revisited

All indications were that I was definitely not the only doubter in worship. Lots of people confirmed their doubts after worship. I don’t have any easy answers for those who struggle with doubts. But I’ll tell you what Jesus did with the doubting crowd at the religious festival. (John 7 still.) For seven days of […]

“Doubters” coffee table

When I stand in the pulpit (or wherever) tomorrow, I wonder how many people will be listening and struggling with doubts about what they believe. One person, 10 people, half the congregation, the whole gathering? Perhaps it depends on what kind of doubts. Actually, any doubts qualify…all the way from “Is there a God?” to […]