• living invitations

    by  • January 18, 2015 • 5 Comments


    “Living Invitations” A Sermon for Pilgrim United Church of Christ, Durham NC John 1:43-51 January 18, 2015 When I was a kid I thought Jesus was magic. I’m not talking about the miracles. Somehow those made sense in their own way. The Messiah ought to be able to do miracles. I mean the super...

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    wise and weary ones

    by  • January 8, 2015 • 2 Comments

    photo by Leonard Beeghley

    Christmas was gone before they got to the manger, camels and servants grumbling. “We saw his star in the east,” they said. Mary wondered why a sign from God didn’t get them there on time for the birth. “You missed the angel choir,” she replied. They knelt before the babe, offering gifts and hopeful...

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    christmastide: this day after

    by  • December 26, 2014 • 3 Comments


    My friends, Burt and Julie, are celebrating the wedding of their son tomorrow. Several years ago, I wrote this poem remembering the birth of their daughter. Today seems a good day to look at it again. this day after Some time after seminary my best friend, Burt, got married; then a few more years...

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    advent journal: an old story

    by  • December 24, 2014 • 4 Comments


    This story is not new, but then neither are the feelings it names. Thanks for making the journey with me this Advent. A Faraway Christmas by Milton Brasher-Cunningham A Faraway Christmas As we gather together on this Silent Night, To sing ‘round the tree in the soft candlelight, From a Faraway Christmas, from time...

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    advent journal: we are the sunshine

    by  • December 23, 2014 • 3 Comments


    Tonight Ginger, Jay, and I sat at Geer Street Garden and, among other things, talked our way through the litany of sadness and grief that grips our world both far and near. We remembered people close to us who are learning to live without those they love, those we are getting close to the...

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    advent journal: listen . . .

    by  • December 22, 2014 • 0 Comments


    Today was dark and cold here in Durham. I drove to work in the dark early this morning and drove home in the dark this afternoon. In between I heard snippets of stories that passed for news that were mostly people yelling. Listening does not often get reported as being significant. Yelling makes for...

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    advent journal: percussion

    by  • December 21, 2014 • 2 Comments


    love is the drum that beats in our bones even in our broken melodies of grief our symphonies of sorrow and sadness relentless resonance in the late night club of all that could have been the hope of the high hat the syncopation of surprise the gentle jazz of joy put your hands together...

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    advent journal: the way it is with love

    by  • December 20, 2014 • 4 Comments


    I will tell it to you as it was told to me. Somewhere early in my day I read these words from my friend Olivia, who lives in Boston. She is someone in love with life who looks for ways to feel connected to the world around her. Here’s what she found: I spotted...

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    advent journal: good measure

    by  • December 19, 2014 • 6 Comments


    I can show you a cup of flour, or a pound of sugar, and I’ve gotten pretty good at scooping a two ounce cookie, but I am at a loss to quantify how heavy grief is, how long a heart stays broken, the depth of damage done, how far it is to forgiveness, the...

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    advent journal: dinner together

    by  • December 18, 2014 • 3 Comments


    If you have followed this blog for any length of time, or if you have read Keeping the Feast: Metaphors for the Meal, you know about Thursday Night Dinner. We gather each week with friends around our table for no other reason than to be around the table together. OK, so it also gives...

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