We need to gather as God’s people right now and ask the Holy Spirit to instruct us, shape us, remake us, and commission us. We need a fresh language of bridge-building and new words to rekindle joy. We need the wind and fire of God to transform us and wrestle us from our complacency. It’s time for us to speak new words and tell new stories, to create new relationships and kindle old love. Here’s the thing: No matter how passionately I disagree with your opinions and beliefs, I cannot disagree with your experience. Once I have learned to hear and speak your story in the words that matter most to you, then I have stakes I never had before. I can no longer thrive at your expense. I can no longer make you my Other.
The Spirit broke down barriers on that Pentecost by loosening the tongues of the disciples and by opening the ears of the crowd so that they were able to hear each other. God compelled the disciples to engage, to press in, to linger, listen, and speak.
The Spirit has come, and silence is no longer an option.
… More The Spirit has come, silence is no longer an option.
The Ascension narratives at the end of Luke’s Gospel and the beginning of Acts are both immediately tied to the promised gift of the Holy Spirit. Together these are two moments of the same process and complete the act that began with the resurrection. The Ascension, therefore, is not really about Jesus’ absence but about a presence in a new and more powerful way. Moreover, the Ascension narrative invites us to take our place with Jesus at the right hand of God to fulfill our original blessing to have dominion (in a loving Godly way) over creation. What is holding us down from accepting the invitation! What do we need to do to defy gravity and live the ascended life? … More Defying Gravity! (An Ascension Story)
In the Magnificat, Mary reveals the birth of the Messiah is the sign of what God’s kingdom looks like. The Incarnation is the foreshadowing of the age to come.
In the incarnation, God became flesh! But God did not become flesh as Caesar or Pharaoh; but, rather, God became flesh in the person of Jesus of Nazareth, son of a peasant woman in an occupied land. If this could happen then the mighty were as good as cast down from their thrones and the hungry were as good as fed. Yes, these were as good as accomplished because in becoming flesh God is in fact breaking the age to come into our world. Mary goes on to sing that this is not some new thing God is doing, but it is in fulfillment of all that God has promised Israel. The God of Israel is now acting in human history in such a way that it will not just break the kingdom of God into this age for the Jews, but for all humanity. … More Casting Down the Mighty
THE FEAST OF PENTECOST (Year A)
The Holy Spirit descends on the disciples in Jerusalem, sending them to speak the good news to the world. Now, it is our turn. The Spirit invites each of us in our baptismal covenant to share our story of life and love with our neighbor. … More To Whom Will You Speak
7th SUNDAY OF EASTER (Year A)
The twin experience of the feast of Ascension is the promise of the power and presence of the Holy Spirit and the call to use that power in mission to the wrold. … More The Spirit of God Breaking into the World
FEAST OF THE PRESENTATION OF THE LORD
I imagine that we all have moments when we need someone to point to Jesus, to say with no ambiguity, “Here is Jesus! Right here, right now, is the saving work of God! Right where you are standing, as close as breath, is Emmanuel, God with us, hope bearing Messiah.” … More The Hope Bearing Messiah