It’s About Power

For the rest of the fall, I’m going to begin my sermons by talking to our children, though the grownups are welcome to listen! Let’s talk about power today. Make a fist with me. Holding up your fist can be a way of saying “I’m powerful.” There are different kinds of power, though. If you… Read More

The Love Paradigm

This weekend the Minnesota Council of Churches launched a ten-year reparations process, with an event called “Finally Telling the Truth.” This effort is the first of its kind in the country. It gives me hope that Minnesotans can break out of our patterns of racism on repeat, that we can get beyond our nice words… Read More

A Joyous Reversal

“The first shall be last and the last shall be first.” Here’s a story that illustrates this proverb for me: Badger’s Bring Something Party, a story by Hiawyn Oram. Mole get invited to Badger’s party, a bring something party. But he doesn’t have anything to bring. “So” the narrator explains, “mole went to the party… Read More

The World We Stand to Gain

It was a Tuesday. I was 26 years old; I had recently finished Divinity School in Chicago and moved here to the Twin Cities with my spouse Jen. We were renting the lower half of a house on Park Avenue in South Minneapolis. We had gone out that morning on a walk and then stopped… Read More

I Wonder, I Notice

This morning, I want to try something a little different. I want to draw on our community wisdom – through a time of dialogue with our text from the book of James. A few comments first to ground our hearing of the text. It seems helpful to say up front that James is a challenging… Read More

Treaty People

“We are all treaty people.” This phrase has been rolling around in my mind and heart recently. Over the last few weeks, walkers traveled 256 miles from the headwaters of the Mississippi to the State Capitol, to oppose Line 3, to protect water, and to insist that we uphold our treaties. On Tuesday, I joined… Read More

Eating Jesus

I couldn’t resist. “The round jubilance of peach.” Actually, many jubilant peaches. The big box of Colorado peaches. We finished our first box so I bought a second one yesterday! All week long, they’ve sat on the counter, fragrant and ripe, perfectly firm yet perfectly soft; colored like a magnificent sunrise: yellow/orange/pink; the skin (as… Read More

Food that Endures

Last Sunday, we hosted my brother’s family at our new house for the first time. They had seen pictures and taken the Zoom tour. And yet, it was so important to have them in our home, in the flesh. Now they’ve chatted in our kitchen and sat under the shade pergola in the backyard. They… Read More

A Hunger to Gather

Across the street from our new house is a sprawling oasis—the garden at Loring Elementary School. Our family took a turn caring for the garden this past week, watering, weeding, and harvesting. This garden challenges me, in a good way. I was taught to keep rows neat and give each plant its own space. This… Read More

Breathe and Push

Sometimes, the Spirit shows up at surprising times. One night last week, I opened my computer and set it on the kitchen counter, as Jen and I cleaned up after dinner. I tuned in to the General Synod, our United Church of Christ national meeting. Keynoter Valarie Kaur was literally in the middle of a… Read More