Have progressives made Trump God?

Nov 6, 2017 by

We live in times of heightened emotion. Enmeshed in digital media and captured by our “always-on” culture, it’s hard to unplug. The bare-knuckle fights of politicos and pundits come straight to our...

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It’s hard to love when they’re trying to hurt you

Jul 17, 2017 by

Most days, I go for a run. About three miles. Lately, I’ve been choosing a route that takes me along a trail that winds through a public park. Recently, my run has been a struggle. Not because of the summer...

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No Tomahawk missiles in the kingdom of God

Apr 12, 2017 by

This post is a sermon (audio version here) given April 9, 2017 at Washington City Church of the Brethren. Our gospel reading this morning is about Jesus’ triumphal entrance into Jerusalem, just days before...

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Resisting the age of Trump with the love of Jesus

Dec 6, 2016 by

Denial is giving way to harsh reality. This is really happening. Donald Trump is going to be the president of the United States for the next four years. A Trump presidency threatens the safety and well-being...

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If ISIS killed your child

Sep 12, 2016 by

I recently read a blog post by a U.S. Army chaplain, who talks about his struggle with Jesus’ call to love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us. In a military context, he regularly finds himself...

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Theology is great, but what I really need is Jesus

Aug 30, 2016 by

When I was in seminary at Earlham School of Religion, I was able to spend all my time studying and pondering the nature of God, Jesus and the community gathered around him. I considered deep questions of...

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Why is church so hard?

May 13, 2016 by

For the past couple of years, my blog’s tagline has been: “Religion is easy; discipleship is hard.” I’m starting to think that perhaps this slogan is only half right. Discipleship certainly is hard,...

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Could empire be a good thing?

Apr 14, 2016 by

For me, and most people I know, the word “empire” has a negative connotation. As well it should. The economic and military might of human empires has been one of the most destructive forces in history....

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Time to turn off the news?

Feb 15, 2016 by

One of my favorite morning rituals is sitting down with breakfast and opening up the newspaper. I understand there aren’t many in my generation that still read the news in print, but for me it’s a...

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Why is US Christian president so violent?

Jan 14, 2016 by

For his final State of the Union address, President Obama delivered a characteristically eloquent and passionate speech. He issued a heartfelt call for unity and cooperation in a country whose political...

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Jesus is a prayer-shamer

Dec 9, 2015 by

These mass shootings are starting to seem routine. In the wake of the San Bernardino murders, all the politicians and talking heads were behaving predictably. Those who support more gun regulations were using...

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Paris must not be another 9/11

Nov 16, 2015 by

Just like you, I was horrified when I learned of last week’s terror attacks in Paris. The scale, precision and barbarity of these crimes are hard to fathom. My first reaction was sadness for the victims and...

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Comparing ourselves to whom?

Oct 26, 2015 by

A funny thing happened when I moved to D.C. six years ago. I went from being surrounded by a laid-back crew of seminarians, pastors, poets and radicals to living in one of the most powerful, motivated and...

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Are Quakers allowed to speak in tongues?

Sep 17, 2015 by

The first time I heard someone speak in tongues was at the World Gathering of Young Friends, an international Quaker gathering held in 2005, in Lancaster, England. It was a minister from Philadelphia Yearly...

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Are Quakers already dead?

Aug 26, 2015 by

We Quakers think a lot about our own demise. I’ve lost count of how many events, conferences, books and lectures have essentially centered around the question: Will Quakerism survive? I believe this is the...

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Why Pope Francis’ climate encyclical matters

Jun 22, 2015 by

Pope Francis’ ecological encyclical came out June 18, and there are many reasons for hope. It’s encouraging to see a such a high-profile Christian leader taking a strong stand on both ecological issues...

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Do Christian pacifists have a solution for stopping ISIS?

Mar 3, 2015 by

A couple of folks I really respect — Kate Gould of Friends Committee on National Legislation (a.k.a., the Quaker Lobby), and Jim Wallis of Sojourners — were recently on The O’Reilly Factor. I normally...

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I like Jesus. Do I have to be Religious?

Nov 24, 2014 by

Are you tired of the hypocrisy and greed of prosperity gospel preachers? Fed up with politicians appealing to religious sentiments in order to win elections and start wars? Do you feel like there must be...

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Becoming a church of the servant

Oct 9, 2014 by

And Jesus called them to him and said to them, “You know that those who are considered rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. But it shall not be so...

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Is Jesus religious?

Aug 6, 2014 by

All my life I just assumed that Jesus is a religious figure, the founder of Christianity. And why wouldn’t I? We Christians are definitely part of a religion, and our practice of Christianity absolutely...

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