Prophecies & Pottery: Build houses & Plant Gardens in Exile


PREFACE TO PSALM 137:  Jeremiah began his ministry in 627 BCE, and witnessed the final years of Jerusalem before it fell to Nebuchadnezzar in 597 BCE when he started taking the ruling class into exile in Babylon. Ten years later, Nebuchadnezzar destroyed the holy city of Jerusalem and desecrated the temple. It was the worst […]

Prophecies & Pottery: Journeys with Jeremiah – Broken Shards

Excerpts of Jeremiah chapters 4, 8, & 9 These chapters of Jeremiah’s laments preface the days leading up to the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple. When Josiah was king of Israel, launching religious reforms, Jeremiah was a young prophet. But when Josiah is killed in battle, Jerusalem starts its free-fall with a quick succession […]

Prophecies & Pottery: Journeys with Jeremiah – Cracked Cisterns


Prophecies & Pottery: Journeys with Jeremiah Worship Series – Jeremiah 2 This passage reminds the Southern tribe of Judah and us of the Sacred covenant between God and the people. “I will be your God; You will be my people”, with the reminder “You shall have no other gods before me.” These verses sound like […]

What is your Give-Away


Labor Day weekend provides a good opportunity to reflect on work. The etymology of the word work comes from the word worship. Worship is literally the WORK of the people and today it will be especially so. About 7 years ago when I was the pastor at SPCUMC, I received the offering plates, and noticed […]

The Practice of Living With Purpose


When I went away to seminary 20 years ago, a clergy friend gave me a book by Dr  Rachel Naomi Remen called “Kitchen Table Wisdom: Stories that Heal”.  Later I read her book, “My Grandfather’s Blessings” about her Orthodox Jewish Rabbi grandfather. Dr. Remen has been widely known for her pioneering work with cancer patients […]

The Practice of the Three Essential Things


This is the last sermon in a worship series on Christine Valters Paintner’s book entitled “The Soul’s Slow Ripening: 12 Celtic Practices for Seeking the Sacred”. How often do you think in patterns of three? You hear expressions like “3’s company” or on the flip side “3’s a crowd” or “bad news or death always comes […]

The Practice of Walking the Rounds


We are in the midst of a summer worship series called: The Souls Slow Ripening: 12 Celtic Spiritual Practices for Seeking the Sacred, by Christine Valters Paintner. Have you been around dogs enough to notice a curious habit? Some dogs will circle their beds before settling in for a nap. This behavior was hard-wired in […]