First Sunday in Advent

O that you would tear open the heavens and come down,     so that the mountains would quake at your presence— as when fire kindles brushwood     and the fire causes water to boil— to make your name known to your adversaries,     so that the nations might tremble at your presence! When you did awesome deeds that … More First Sunday in Advent

Poinsettias: A Christmas Meditation

Last month I wrote three short meditations for my parents’ church’s Hanging of the Greens service. I’ve already shared an Advent-themed piece on candle light. This Christmas Eve I’ll publish the two focused on symbols of Jesus’ birth itself. First up, the flowers that are omnipresent this time of year. One of the complicated joys of Christianity is … More Poinsettias: A Christmas Meditation

Blue Christmas: Comfort, Hope, and Healing

I’m not entirely sure what took me out this night, the longest of the year, to attend “A Service of Comfort, Hope, and Healing” at my father-in-law’s church in Cedar Falls, Iowa. By way of explanation, I mumbled something to my wife about Stacey and GW. It’s been months now since the deaths of those close friends, … More Blue Christmas: Comfort, Hope, and Healing

Happy Holidays (The War on Christmas Is Over)

Onward, Christian soldiers: the war on Christmas is over, and the good guys won. Just ask Fox News host Bill O’Reilly: You may remember about 10 years ago, “The O’Reilly Factor” began spotlighting companies that refused to say the words “Merry Christmas.” In fact, some of those businesses actually ordered their employees not to say that. … More Happy Holidays (The War on Christmas Is Over)