Steal Away to Jesus

In 2008, my father had a debilitating stroke that impacted his right side and his language center.  He finds it difficult to impossible to find words.  He does not walk. Now 86 years old, he has lived with these major handicaps for over six years. This past Mother’s Day, my father and my sister sang(…)

I have called you by name, you are mine. ~ Isaiah 43:1

We pale in comparison. When we compare ourselves to others, someone always comes up short.  Any child who has ever been compared to a sibling knows the truth of that.  “Why can’t you be more like your brother?”  “I know you’ll never be like your sister!”  And it doesn’t stop with childhood.  As adults we(…)

Sanctifying Action

I had the absolute privilege of meeting with the Women’s Spirituality Circle Lenten Interest Group.  We began each of our sessions by lighting brightly colored tea lights from a central pillar candle.  These tea lights represented the individuals in the room and the light each of us brought with us.  At the end of our(…)

Celebrating Easter With Dirt Under Your Fingernails

Recently, the Friendship/Fireside Conversation Sunday School class finished their study on the series Saving Jesus.  One of the things the series pointed out was that most creeds go right from Jesus’ birth to his death and resurrection.  For example, in the Apostle’s Creed, the transition sounds like this: He was conceived by the power of(…)

Hearing God’s Call

In January, I joined the Church of the Brethren Clergy Women’s Retreat at Serra Center in Malibu.  Being part of the La Verne Church of the Brethren, where I do not find my ability for ministry called into question because I am a woman, I began to wonder, “Is there still a need for a(…)

Finding Balance

As a pastor I find myself in random conversations all the time with strangers who have opinions about church.  Some of them have had experience with a church that caused them pain and they tell me how church is just a club….a group of people that gather together to make themselves feel better but are(…)

Woven Together With Gratitude

  At a program staff meeting one morning, we spent time identifying those things about this congregation for which we are deeply grateful.  It was an impressive list.  Here is a partial list of what we generated:   We are overflowing with creative people. There are many people here who invest their talents and gifts(…)

O Holy Night!

At the end of the first night of District Conference this year we were invited, if we so chose,  to walk a labyrinth. At the Franciscan Renewal Center in the desert of Scottsdale, Arizona is a labyrinth in the sand, created by rocks.  Someone had marked our path with candlelight and turned on instrumental music(…)

Defendant, Juror and Judge

Growing up watching Perry Mason I have always wanted to be part of a jury trial.  I faithfully show up whenever I am assigned jury duty.  I think to myself, “Maybe this time my services will be needed.”  I rarely make it out of the jury assembly room and the times I have made it(…)

Telling Stories

My story is important not because it is mine, God knows, but because if I tell it anything like right, the chances are you will recognize that in many ways it is also yours… it is precisely through these stories in all their particularity, as I have long believed and often said, that God makes(…)