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Showing posts from July, 2012

Still

This morning, as I was closing windows and turning off fans, and preparing to leave after a morning of delightful worship, I felt good. I felt, grateful I felt, love. I love this place, this congregation. I walked through the silent church and gave thanks to God for leading me here. It was just an ordinary Sunday, really. But, still, it was delightful.

Now, after months of being crazy busy I am about to take some time off. I know, I can hear you say, "Didn't you just have some time off?" Certainly that is a fair statement, because I did. That time, end of June and early July, included a drive to Chicago for a family wedding followed immediately by a drive to Indianapolis to attend the General Convention of the Episcopal Church, followed by ending my vacation three days early to come home and officiate at the funeral of a parishioner (one whom I had given significant pastoral care to over the last year).

So. All things considered, I didn't really have time off, just …

To be Tenderhearted, a very human struggle...

A reflection on the readings from Proper 12B: Second Book of Samuel 11:1-17 and Ephesians 3

In the four chapters between last week’s reading in 2nd Samuel and this week – there were a lot of battles, sometimes called the “Davidic Wars” – which tout David’s skill as a military leader and his rising authority as King.
Now this morning we hear the story of David, the beloved king, who having developed a rather high opinion of himself, acts with arrogance and self-entitlement – he orders another man’s wife to be brought to him. And not just any one, Bathsheba is the wife of the Uriah, a loyal warrior in David’s army. Of course Bathsheba has no choice, if she wants to keep her life she must obey the king, and so she goes to him…and we all know what that means…she ends up pregnant with David’s child.
To cover his indiscretion David first attempts to convince Uriah to leave his military post and sleep with Bathsheba, so that Uriah might be fooled into thinking that the child is his. But Uriah…

Tragedy on many levels

In my homily yesterday I spoke a little bit about the tragedy in Colorado, mental health, gun control, individualism, community "soul" and corporate prayer. Some of my thoughts, although I didn't say so then, were influenced by this article in the June 22, 2012 New York Times Magazine. Some of what I spoke about was influenced by my own life experience with mental illness in family members. And, some of what I spoke about is my ongoing reflection on the extreme individualism rampant in this country and our loss of civility.

When I preached the sermon I said more than what was posted on my blog. In particular I mentioned that traversing into the realm of mental illness must be done carefully. I don't want to convey the idea that all mental illness will lead to violence to self or others. Nor do I want to convey the idea that all violence is the result of mental illness. I only wanted to suggest that people who commit heinous crimes of mass murder are living some kind …

Nourishment for Our Souls

A reflection the propers for 11B: 2 Samuel 7:1-14a and the tragedy in Aurora, Co.

Much has happened in the 2nd book of Samuel since I was last here, two weeks ago as David moves toward becoming the next king. There have been a number of battles among the tribes of Israel – divided into a northern territory called Israel and the southern territory called Judah - where the cities of Jerusalem and Bethlehem reside. The battles in chapters 1-5 reflect the effort it takes to reunite the northern and southern realms – Israel and Judah – into one nation, Israel. They also reflect the effort it takes to bring David fully into his reign as king over the newly united Israel. Chapter five described this union of the northern and southern territories and the anointing of David as the king of the entire nation. Chapter five continues with more battles to establish the security of Israel and David as king. David has great success with these battles. In chapter six David establishes Jerusalem as the…

So, Every Day

Two of my blogging friends have had to put their dogs down. I feel this sorrow to the core of my being, the day I have to do this, too, is within sight. My Roxie is 14 years old, and showing every bit of her age. But so far the pain meds we are giving her seem to be keeping her comfortable enough. Every day is a gift.

We also have an almost 15 year old cat. Today she started to upchuck a fur ball on the sofa, we reacted by moving over to lift her off. This movement caused our momma dog, Ruby (a ten year old Viszla) to charge the cat - she does this in her self-determined role of  "momma" - making the other animals behave. But in the process of being pounced at, the cat panicked, leaped backward and fell off the sofa. A short while later we found her collapsed in front of the litter box, unable to walk straight. We were certain she had broken something. But thankfully, after a little rest and comfort, she seems to be better.
Every day is a gift.

In the last three weeks I h…

Mixed Blessings

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This morning I am watching Jenna Bush Hager describe her road trip along highway 12 in Southern Utah, part of her "America the Beautiful" report on the Today Show. I made that trip a couple of years ago, although unlike JBH I was not in a classic caddie convertible. I was driving my old VW Passat Wagon with the new engine. (The engine in this car "blew" in Dec. 2009, part of the engine sludge build up that was unfortunately all too common in Passats...It cost us $5000.00 and many months of scrimping and saving to replace the engine)....





Highway 12 truly is one of the wonders of this country, a spectacular drive through Bryce Canyon



and the Escalante Staircase (or in this case, my dad's backyard from his house off of Highway 12)




 and Calf Creek....





That road trip will always be one of my favorite trips, in large part because it was taken with my son and his dog, Emmy:



Although I am on vacation this week, I will not be taking a trip like this one. I do plan t…