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Questions

I was out walking with a young woman the other night and we were talking about faith. She had so many questions. “Is everything in the Bible true? Did God create the world in seven days? If he did how come it doesn’t match science? What do you mean God might be a woman? Did Jonah really get swallowed by a whale? How do I know what to believe?” They just kept coming. As fast as we talked about one another one came on its heels. They were great questions ... Read More »

Try Harder

Religion says: Try Harder. Jesus says: Trust Me. The power of these simple words struck me the first time I read them. Isn’t the tension between these two strategies exactly the place where we get stuck? Many of us believe that God is somehow involved in this journey to a life of meaning, purpose and joy, but it is sometimes difficult to figure out just exactly who does what in that process. If all things are possible with God, why does it still feel so hard sometimes? If it is ... Read More »

Making God A Priority

“God wants first place in our life,” said Bishop Cho Sunday morning as we closed the 233rd session of the Virginia Annual Conference. He followed with a pretty convicting question, “Who is number one in your life?” Since Sunday I’ve been thinking a lot about that question. I want God to be first place and yet, the truth is, I crowd God out. This is mostly because I’m too busy. It is also because, quite frankly, I just don’t make God a priority. Two years ago, Bishop Cho challenged us to ... Read More »

I Love You, Too

I never say “I love you” to God.  Not anymore. I don’t remember a time when I didn’t know about Jesus. The Christian faith has been part of my life from the beginning. I’ve always understood that prayer means talking to God and I have always considered prayer to be a good thing. Sometimes when I prayed, I felt that someone heard those prayers. Other times, however, prayer has simply been an exercise in faith. As it says in Hebrews, “faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance ... Read More »

Invitation From God

Last November, I went to a conference with a number of inspirational speakers. One of the speakers talked about a time in her life when she felt God had “invited” her to make a change, to do it differently, to consider another path, to step out of her comfort zone. I was intrigued by this idea of an invitation from God, as if God was inviting us each to a very special party called life. At the end of the week, in an effort to crystalize the message and the ways ... Read More »

Bouncing Back

I’ve had a rough start this year. I feel a bit like the boxing clown toy that I had as a child—the one that when I would punch it, it would go to the floor but then bounce back so that I could render another punch. Most of us experience these seasons in which life seems to be more challenging than it should be. When we wonder, “When am I going to get a break?” I have found that unlike that clown toy, it’s actually pretty easy to stay down ... Read More »

The Messy Road to a Miracle

I love flowers. I delight in flowers. I find a tremendous amount of joy in looking at flowers, caring for flowers and watching plants transform from ugly tubers or seedlings into works of art. The amazing fact that some also have a heavenly scent is just too wonderful for words. I find pleasure in perusing garden catalogues, garden books and garden websites. I enjoy doing research to find the perfect plant for that particular spot in the ever-changing, always-evolving painting that is my garden. Except for being pregnant, gardening is the closest thing to ... Read More »

Easter: It’s Not About The Egg

One of my favorite Easter traditions as a kid came courtesy of a much beloved aunt and uncle. It wasn’t a new outfit or a new pair of patent leather Mary Janes, although those items were fun treats over the years as well. No, it was the one and only chocolate Easter egg from See’s Candy. It was rich, fancy and so special it came in its own box. I remember thinking it was one of the prettiest things I’d seen. I’d enjoy small pieces at a time, sharing it ... Read More »

#forsaken

How does one write about Jesus on the cross without feeling a sense of missing something or not fully encapsulating this moment that we collectively experience each year through Lent? I have no clue and yet, here I am attempting to write about it. How do we understand the human and divine nature of Jesus when we read the parables, experience the miracles and teachings, and yet, see Jesus on the cross saying: “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” Again, not a clue. But I do know a ... Read More »

What’s Underneath It All?

Isn’t it amazing what you find when the snow melts? Mind you, I haven’t gone looking, but the puppies find everything. It was cute when they dug up sticks, several tennis balls and the long lost frisbee. But when they started finding candy wrappers, tissues, soggy newspaper, mashed aluminum cans and the random pile of poop, it wasn’t quite so funny any more. Sheesh. Where did all this stuff come from? Just a few days ago the yard was pristine, blanketed in beautiful, glistening, white. Not a blemish on it. Now ... Read More »

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