Bible: Ask for wisdom, with confidence

Jul 28, 2020 by

Do you wish for more wisdom? You can ask God, and God will give it to you. But if you doubt God will answer your request, forget it. Doubters should not expect to get anything from God. That sounds pretty...

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Celebrating the holidays — and every day

Dec 16, 2019 by

Celebration is what we are called to. We are called to practice joy by celebrating. What we have to learn is how to celebrate life. Celebrating life is not a party but an awareness that every moment is special...

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Powell: Where’s the joy in tense times?

Dec 9, 2019 by

An acquaintance said to me, “Another year is almost over. Christmas will soon be here. I can’t get into the spirit with all the divisiveness around me. When will it stop?” She was expressing what many...

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Central District aspires to follow where God leads

Aug 19, 2019 by and

MILWAUKEE — Sunlight streamed through stained glass windows as participants gathered at Milwaukee Mennonite Church for the annual meeting of Mennonite Church USA’s Central District Conference June...

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Resurrection reality

Mar 26, 2018 by

As we enter the Easter season, we’re celebrating not merely a feel-good story but an actual event in history. In the person of Jesus, God entered our space and time as one of us. He lived, died and returned...

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Facing death with laughter

Feb 5, 2018 by

I’m in the process of editing a 20-page essay on the spirit of the Ausbund, a German book of Anabaptist songs still used in some Amish circles. Many of the lyrics tell stories of Anabaptist martyrs. The...

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Kehrberg: Seeking comfort and joy

Dec 18, 2017 by

During Advent, churches wait for Jesus’ birth while discussing concepts like comfort and hope, waiting and watching, peace and joy. Spiritually, I get it. But on a practical level it’s a bit of a joke. If...

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Eat our way to joy

Jun 30, 2017 by

Joy strikes out of the blue nothingness. You can’t expect it or manufacture it or capture it. For Christians, the completeness of our joy comes from Jesus. After he taught on his abiding in us and our...

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Embrace the darkness

Dec 19, 2016 by

Hens lose their egg-laying gusto as the days get shorter. Rather than offer a winter respite to her flock, my wife chose brainwashing over relief. Already in October she festooned the chicken run with...

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How to celebrate Advent like Mary

Dec 5, 2016 by

To celebrate Jesus’ coming, Mary did not light Advent candles or put up a Christmas tree. Not that there’s anything wrong with these things. At church, we’re counting the four weeks before Christmas by...

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Waiting for liberation

Dec 5, 2016 by

Jesus was born into a community of second-class citizens waiting for a liberator. Those who experienced the first Advent endured the weight of oppression — the Roman Empire’s occupation of Judea. Those of...

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Miller: Gifts that bring joy to the giver

Nov 21, 2016 by

Christmas is weeks away, but I’m thinking about gift-giving. Finding the right gift for some people can be a challenge. I don’t recall many gifts I’ve given over the years. But I will always remember...

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Challenging the narrative of rural decline

Oct 28, 2016 by

As the 2016 US election rattles into its final stretch, rural people and communities have gotten an ill-deserved bad rap. Commentators along the urban coastlines, seeking to understand rural voting patterns,...

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Why do we eat soup during Lent?

Mar 22, 2016 by

Why do we eat soup during Lent? The question from a church member caught me a bit off guard as I was scrambling to get a few things together for a soup and bread Lenten lunch that our church was hosting last...

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Choosing joy

Nov 20, 2014 by

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds. — James 1:2 In the wake of my father’s death, I found myself doing something strange. I identified anything good...

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