Wednesday, October 21, 2009


The Israelites get to the land of promise, find giants and won't go.

It is time to go, time to commit, time to move into the future that we can't even imagine.  Time to jump.

Yes, that was Madonna up on the screen.  I have heard more about this sermon than almost any other.  Here is the link to the YouTube video Jump by Madonna I think this is not computer assisted, I think they are amazing jumpers.  It is one of my favorite music videos, great music and it helps me want to leap into life. 

That is the Israelites choice because they can't go back to Egypt -- the old traditions that enslave them are now behind and gone.  Ahead is the unknown.  Since they can't move ahead, God creates a generation of those just holding onto the faith, dwindling and dying out, till a new generation can take the jump.  Wow, that sounds a lot like nearly the whole United Methodist Church in the last fifty years.  This is a hard scripture! 

Remember, next Monday (the 26th) Judith Pruess-Mellow is going to be here consulting with us about how we facilitate our ministry to seniors in our church and out city.  What questions would you like to ask an expert in Senior Spirituality??

The Clown of God

Foolishness and play, juggling and teddy bears, preaching from the floor and singing "Rise and Shine".  Through it all children laughing and the kind is simplicity that would make my teacher glad.  I had a good time on Saint Francis Sunday.  And it is so important to me.  I like complexity and deep talks, I like electronic gadgets and a lot of the trapping that require a bunch of money.  Saint Francis talks to me again and again about letting go of most of the stuff that makes this culture in this time go.  Eat whatever you have, share, play and get close to nature that God created. 

This year I used the image of balancing to talk about the truths that Saint Francis saw in his society. Do you know why a stick stood on end will now stay up?  A six foot pole falls over even if very carefully balanced, but a bottle of water (roughly the same shape) stays up.  Maybe we didn't have any engineers in the crowd on Sunday.  We talked about "center of gravity"  It takes a lot of enegy and stability to keep a hierarchy going.  Things come stable when the pole is turned sideways and lays on the floor. 
We went into the yard at the end of the service to bless about ten or twelve new members of the church all with fuzzy noses who also have trouble sitting still through a sermon.  The alpaca couldn't make it.  Thank you to the four young folks who cared for the animals while we were in the church. 

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Communing with Lutherans

Packed house at Christ Lutheran this week.  We celebrated (and celebrated and celebrated and celebrated -- I know we ran late) communion in a joint service.  What a pleasure to all be together.  Jim Goldsmith and I interwove stories of Martin Luther and John Wesley.  Bell Choir and Methodist Choir and grape juice and wine and the too-many-people-up-front waltz for communion.  I only completely lost my place once, but found that Jim and I cover for each other pretty well.  I will look forward to working with that community again.

On world communion it is a good thing to do something that makes it seem like the Christian church is actually one.  There have been enough stories this week about how we fight with one another.  I keep thinking that the way God is going to destroy the world at Armageddon is going to be to lock all the different Christian churches into a room together and stand back.  Who needs four horses of the apocalypse?  It hurts my heart.

This week I am juggling a house without Harriet with getting ready for my favorite Sunday of the year.  Saint Francis in a brand new place.  I don't think anyone knows what they are getting into yet -- and of course, neither do I.