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    lenten journal: connection

    by  • March 3, 2015 • 5 Comments

    One of the things I love about my job as a trainer at the computer store is I get to know people. Mine is the one position in the store that sees repeat customers because they have purchased a one-year membership that allows them to come in as often as they can make appointments....

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    lenten journal: poetry

    by  • March 2, 2015 • 2 Comments

    The woman who wrote the article I talked about yesterday said one of the ways she tried to reach her daughter was to put poems in her shoes because, she said, “What I wanted her to know is: People have been in pain before, struggled to find hope, and look what they’ve done with...

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    lenten journal: patience

    by  • March 1, 2015 • 2 Comments

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    My friend Paul pointed me to an article in the New York Times that has stuck with me for several days now titled “Bringing a Daughter Back From the Brink With Poetry.” The author told a simple story of how she worked to reach out to her teenage daughter as she was going through...

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    lenten journal: adventure

    by  • February 28, 2015 • 3 Comments

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    I am writing late tonight because I have been at a wedding. The daughter of church friends got married this evening. Several weeks ago, they contacted me about baking pies for the wedding. They didn’t want a cake. Instead they wanted individual mini pies—equal amounts of key lime and chocolate chess. We came up...

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    lenten journal: content

    by  • February 27, 2015 • 1 Comment

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    Content. How you pronounce the word in your head as you read will determine the definition you infer. con-TENT in a state of peaceful happiness. satisfied with a certain level of achievement, good fortune, etc., and not wishing for more. CON-tent the things that are held or included in something. the amount of a...

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    lenten journal: enough

    by  • February 26, 2015 • 3 Comments

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    It’s Thursday, which means I spent a good part of my day getting ready for Thursday Night Dinner, our weekly gathering with friends and whoever else shows up to share the meal. Tonight it was all “regulars,” if you will—friends who come most every week and who help make both our house and our...

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    lenten journal: liberal

    by  • February 25, 2015 • 8 Comments

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    Liberal. It’s a word that most certainly elicits a response. In the media, it’s a lightning rod. In the dictionary, it means generous and open-minded. I’ve been thinking about the word for a couple of days now after having read an article about a professor at my alma mater who was calling for those...

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    lenten journal: lament

    by  • February 24, 2015 • 3 Comments

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    The last two Sundays I have had the privilege of playing music in church with my friend Terry, who is one of the best harmonica players I have ever heard. Soon after we moved to Durham I was asked to sing at the sixtieth birthday party of one of our church members. I sang...

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    lenten journal: linger

    by  • February 23, 2015 • 8 Comments

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    When I sent out the call for words that might be a part of my Lenten Lexicon, my friend Beth sent the word “linger.” I love the word. The online dictionary gave three definitions: stay in a place longer than necessary; spend a long time over (something); 
be slow to disappear or die. Since...

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    lenten journal: blessing

    by  • February 22, 2015 • 4 Comments

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    I preached today at West Raleigh Presbyterian Church. My friend Lori Pistor is the Interim Pastor there. Those good people are reading my book for Lent and invited me to help kick things off. It was a wonderful day. Here’s what I had to say. “Blessed From the Beginning” A Sermon for West Raleigh...

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    lenten journal: why

    by  • February 21, 2015 • 1 Comment

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    In my days years ago as a hospital chaplain, I spent a lot of time working around the word why. In the context of illness and terminal diagnoses, the word was neither helpful nor hopeful. Why did I get cancer? Why is my father dead? Any answer comes up lacking because it seems to...

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    lenten journal: jazz

    by  • February 20, 2015 • 7 Comments

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    I can’t claim to know very much about jazz. I did see Miles Davis perform once—and he played the entire show without ever speaking to the audience. He did speak on other occasions and said things like this: Don’t play what’s there, play what’s not there. Sometimes you have to play a long time...

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