The goal is to connect

The granddaughter had a new game. The goal is to connect different configurations of colored squares to make a complete line. Strategy isn’t always useful when you don’t know the next hand you’ll be dealt. You have to work with what you’re given. And I’m hooked on it. It’s not complicated and gives you opportunity to learn from your impatience or over-thinking. If only real life connection were this simple....

Let’s add the Candle of Mess to our Advent this year

Our pianist has only been with us a few months. She’s an outsider to our community and our church traditions. A church woman herself, she answered the ad we placed for a pianist needed: Sundays, 8:45 – 10:15 a.m. She walked through the doors our first Sunday of Advent, greeted me as I said, “it’s Advent, you never know what’s going to happen so hold on.” I’m not sure if...

Why I, WE, need Thanksgiving

Because when it’s not on my to-do list or calendar I forget It can’t be the best thing to admit I forget to be thankful. I say thank-you. Mama raised us to have polite manners, after all. But I forget to BE thankful. To carry specific thoughts of the litany of reasons to give thanks to God. If we didn’t have a whole day with it spelled out on the...

How do we thank God no matter what?

Is this the year we sit around our Thanksgiving tables in fear and loathing, wondering where did it go amok? Do we rattle off our list of thanks with all the enthusiasm of reciting the multiplication tables? I’ve lived through elections since the late 70’s when I became eligible to cast my ballot. Saturday Night Live heavily influenced my choice for Carter as I’m sure it’s influenced many a generation...

Who are these Saints and why do they have a day?

Our church isn’t liturgical. I don’t think I knew that word until I was an adult. I thought the ‘church calendar’ was Christmas and Easter, including Good Friday, of course. To me, Saints were either in the bible or more recent dead people who’d been in church their whole lives. Living saints? A few old folks may have been described in that way. Sinners? Oh yes, we were all sinners-...

Grace is the one-size-fits-all pattern

The church is good at creating patterns. And for first borns like me, we’re drawn to the neat packages of how-to’s. Quiet Time aka devotions: Have your quiet time in the morning, first thing, before your feet hit the floor. Fill your soul with good from the word before feeding your body. Prayer: Also in the morning and at night but write them down and use a clever acronym so...