Isaiah 65:17-25; Psalm 118:1-2,14-24; 1 Cor. 15:19-26; Luke 24:1-12 If you’re a parent, maybe you remember a time when you took your kids on a long trip—maybe a vacation, maybe a family visit. There might have been a time once, or even many times, when the child said, “Are we there yet?” Or, maybe you were the child who asked the question: “Are we there yet?” On this Easter Sunday we hear this promise from the prophet Isaiah: I am about to create new heavens & a new earth; the … [Read more...]
God, What a Waste!
Isaiah 43:16-21; Psalm 126; Philippians 3:4b-14; John 12:1-8 Have you ever been invited to a dinner where the host used the best dishes? Maybe you’ve been a guest at a fancy meal? Or, maybe there have been times when you invited guests for a special occasion. Nothing any of us has experienced is likely to compare to what happens in today’s reading from John. Can you imagine showing up at someone’s house for dinner as the guest of honor & they break out a $30,000 bottle of wine? That’s … [Read more...]
Entitlement or Gratitude?
Joshua 5:9-12; Psalm 32; 2 Corinthians 5:16-21; Luke 15:1-3,11b-32 Everyone knows the name of today’s parable, which is... The Prodigal Son. This is a story in need of a new name. The Prodigal Son implies that the most important character in the story is the youngest son. But this story is not about the youngest son. It’s not about the oldest son, either. It’s about the unconditional love of the father. This story should sound familiar because it involves family. Take the parents, for … [Read more...]
Isaiah 55:1-9; Psalm 63:1-8; 1Corinthians 10:1-13; Luke 13:1-19 The people of Haiti & Chile could use some good news. I hope many of them are in worship today to hear the readings for this Sunday. Our reading from Luke is a conversation among people of faith following a tragedy. At that very time there were some present who told [Jesus] about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. 2. He asked them, "Do you think that because these Galileans suffered in this … [Read more...]
Genesis 15:1-18; Psalm 27; Philippians 3:17-4:1; Luke 13:31-35 For those of us who are fans of the Winter Olympic Games, today is a bittersweet day. On the one hand, today the U.S. & Canada will play for the gold medal in hockey; it’s one of the highlights of the Olympics. On the other hand, today is the final day of the Olympic Games. If we want to see more, we’ll have to wait another four years. And in four years I expect that my wife & I will turn on the TV as we have for the … [Read more...]
Deuteronomy 26:1-11; Psalm 91:1-2,9-16; Romans 10:8-13; Luke 4:1-13 Tiger Woods was in the news this week. Again. You know the story. Tiger Woods, famous golf professional, married with kids, is discovered to have been carrying on an affair with another woman. This was no one-night stand. It had been going on for 31 months. That’s more than 2 1⁄2 years. The question that pops into my head when I hear such a story is, “What was he thinking? Did he really think he wouldn’t be … [Read more...]
My Big Fat Tuesday
Isaiah 58:1-12; Psalm 51:1-17; 2 Cor. 5:20-6:10; Matthew 6:1-6,16-21 For some, yesterday was Fat Tuesday, or Mardi Gras. For me, yesterday was our annual appointment with the tax man. Keith has been our accountant for many years; thankfully, he knows his way around the strange & complicated world of clergy taxes. Keith is also a Christian. While he was doing the calculations he noticed that I had my Occasional Services book open. I said Yes, after this, I have a graveside service I’m … [Read more...]
Exodus 34:29-35; Psalm 99; 2 Corinthians 3:12-4:2; Luke 9:28-43a Last week Dave Stevens & I went for a sail in his boat on Lake Washington. Unexpectedly, the stars were out & the lake was like glass. How often do you see Lake Washington without waves—or at least ripples? The most magical part of the evening was seeing in the water the perfect reflection of buildings & trees & lights from Renton, Seattle & Mercer Island. Most of my winter evenings are pretty ordinary. … [Read more...]
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