Birthrights and Blessings

In the last post, The Sacredness of Siblings, we looked at the relationship between Jacob and Esau, and how it changed after Jacob convinced his brother to hand over his birthright. Today we move ahead in the story and watch Rebekah and Jacob use deceptive means to claim Esau’s blessing as well. In Genesis 27, […]

Were We Ever Cursed?

It’s not easy being human. We face challenges every day, and have to use our resiliency and tenacity to figure out how we’re going to get through them. And while we’re striving to be great partners, children, parents, workers, siblings, and citizens, it can be easy to look back and ask, “Why?” Why did that happen? Why this […]

Mary, Let Go Of Me

When was the last time you mourned? Some of us have only a few distant moments we can remember, while for others, mourning seems all too familiar. Mourning is an honest and raw expression of grief, sadness, and loss. It can hit us square in the chest, in the most unexpected moments, and from those periods of mourning onward, our […]

“It Is Finished…” But What About The Resurrection?

A few months ago I attended the filming of Adam Hamilton’s study of John. I sat in the audience, smiling and holding a coffee mug, while a camera crew filmed a series of six devotional presentations. After each devotional, Adam opened the floor for questions from the audience members. Toward the end of the day I raised my hand […]

What Jesus Said About The Afterlife

As a chaplain and a pastor I get a lot of questions about the afterlife. People want to know what happens in the moments after we die. I have heard a variety of answers from other pastors about this weighty and pertinent topic. Some of them use what I call Chutes & Ladders imagery, claiming […]

When Jesus Also Doubted

I recently came across a post that Rachel Held Evans published in March 2013 called “Holy Week for Doubters.” In it, Rachel describes the questions that many of us fear asking on Holy Week; the deep questions of faith and doubt. Those questions can often catch more of our attention on Holy Week, as we attend […]

Gratitude and Attitude

We have a funny little saying in our household: “Gratitude and Attitude.” I came up with it one day while my husband and I were shopping. Early in our relationship I learned that my husband reviles shopping, especially in malls. One day we had to go to a department store to get him new jeans. While he […]

God and Weddings

My wedding day was the best day of my life thus far. I have heard so many wedding horror stories, and have even witnessed weddings in which the bride and groom are stressed out, strung out, and ready for the whole celebration to be over, so they can get back to their normal routines. Our […]

Who’s To Say?

I was watching the news last night (a dangerous thing to do these days) and listened to a number politicians espousing their very staunch, determined views about an array of national and international issues. What struck me most was the tone with which they spoke. It seems to me that the strong-willed resolve they portray to the nation […]