The Son of the Slave and the Son of the Free

There’s an old joke about three people who died misunderstanding the real path of salvation. For those whose first language isn’t English, I apologize if this doesn’t translate well! OK, these three men died and found themselves in hell! One was a man who thought that if he only did good deeds then his “good” would outweigh his “bad” and he’d just squeak into heaven. He said, “I’m surprised I’m here. I…

Back to Church Sunday!

Tomorrow is the Feast of the Nativity of the Theotokos and our annual Back to Church Sunday. All of us have busy lives. But I am convinced one of the greatest tricks of the evil one is to so busy our lives that we sideline important things for temporary things. If we really believe we are going to face our mortality someday, doesn’t it make sense to prepare for that eventuality by…

I Love It When A Plan Comes Together!

“I love it when a plan comes together!” That was a famous tag line for a character in a ’70’s sitcom on American TV (I’ll let you work to find out which one). But it really does describe the feelings of satisfaction and accomplishment when all our hard work, planning, and team building pay off with a successful event or project. I like that feeling. I bet you do too. There really…

He Was Angry at Me

He looked at me in the face, and he was angry, he was angry because he was confronted with an uncomfortable truth. The truth he was confronted with was the stark reality that his words and his actions didn’t match. And being confronted with that reality made me the object of his wrath. He was angry at me. And I hated that. It is never really very fun to deal with the…

O Jerusalem, Jerusalem

Do you know what a “Lament” is? It is defined as “a passionate expression of grief, often in music, poetry, or song form. The grief is most often born of regret, or mourning.” Laments are really not very stylish in today’s modern world. We too often expend great amounts of energy and effort to hide from unpleasant truths or sadness. After all, the number one prescription in America is an antidepressant! Modern…

What’s that Smell?

When I was a boy, I thought my grandmother smelled like the prettiest lady in the world. She came from the day when a lady didn’t leave the house without a proper dress, handbag, hat, and gloves. To this day when I smell a certain perfume, I am immediately transported back in time to walking hand in hand with my grandmother. But that makes sense, because the sense of smell is one…

Tripping over Myself

The news is grim as nations near and far discuss military action in response to the civil war raging in Syria. The US talks of “going it alone” as the British Parliament votes “no” on intervention at this time. Israelis gather gas masks for their families to prepare for retaliatory strikes in the event of any missile attack on Damascus. And Egypt and surrounding Arab countries debate the political fallout in the…

Life and Death Choices

I learned a new word today: insouciant. It means “showing a casual lack of concern; indifferent.” I was reading an article from The Telegraph, a paper out of Britain, concerning the economic impact of emerging markets on the world economy. Heady stuff! And most of which I simply didn’t understand. But I was intrigued with the word “insouciant.” It seemed to capture the attitude of the moment in our pop culture society.…

Opportunity AND Opposition

Let’s see; thinking of things that go great together – ham and eggs, peanut butter and jelly, Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, Tom and Jerry, a crisps, cool morning and a warm cup of coffee, bacon and, well more bacon! OK, so that’s a bit silly, but there are some things in life that simply always go together. It is understanding the power of these pairings that help us see deeper into…

The Tyranny of the Urgent

Ever heard this phrase before: “The tyranny of the urgent”? I read a quote from someone that said “stress makes you believe everything has to happen right now, but faith allows you to trust in God’s timing.” It never ceases to amaze me to see the frenzied activities of modern life. But it does no good to complain about the pace of our lives if we are unwilling to look deeply into…