Tag Archives: Incarnation

On keeping Christmas

Now is not the time to let down your guard. The Grinch who stole into town on Christmas Eve to steal Christmas was not the real threat. He was only a diversion. And he turned out to be a pretty ineffective one. It’s the other Grinch who is the real threat. You’ll remember that the […]

As Christmas approaches

What if the Chinese are the first to have meaningful contact with extraterrestrial life? That’s the question raised in an editorial I read recently. In the editorial, “first” meant “before the U.S.,” and the writer addressed economic and national defense concerns. His article reminded me of the classic spiritual adage – offered, I think, half […]

Time to get real

Do you like surprises? I do. I like to be surprised by the new and different and unexpected, by things that add a little zip to life. I also like those surprises to be safe. I don’t like surprises that threaten things I depend on. I shy away from surprises that destabilize things I count […]

Brief encounter

Today is Pentecost, a day we sometimes celebrate as the birthday of the church, but the church could have been born on any day, and it still might be. It’s a day in Luke’s account of things when a new incarnation of God appeared, and the Spirit of God that was once alive in the […]

The reason for the season

There’s talk these days about a war on Christmas, and some of the most notable combatants include Pope Francis and president-elect Donald Trump. The pope deserves our serious attention; he’s earned it by lucidly restating the essence of the life and teachings of Jesus in today’s idiom. Trump, on the other hand, judging from everything […]

Look again

It’s an old question, as old as the human story. When will God visit this world, this middle ground between heaven and hell, to grant our ancient yearning and set things right? How long will the earth yield thorns and thistles for all our hard work; how long will we have to till the ground […]

Hope rising

Every year I complain about the season’s rush toward Christmas with its apparently irresistible and irreversible consumerism. Every year I hold out hope that the true meaning of Advent might dominate the headlines and our calendars, or at least dominate my attention. And every year hectic preparation bullies aside the opportunity to appreciate “how silently, […]

So this is Christmas

“So this is Christmas.” John Lennon’s words have been ringing in my head since I awoke on this Christmas Day in 2015. Today I want to make the phrase a question – So this is Christmas? – like Peggy Lee’s “Is that all there is?” except I don’t feel that cynical. During my morning walk […]

God is everywhere for everyone

The best laid schemes of mice and men, poet Robert Burns observed, often go astray.1 It’s a truth I remembered as I started thinking, as I do every year after Christmas, about the canticle of Simeon, who had waited a lifetime for the Messiah and who was there when an eight-day-old Jesus was presented at […]

God is here for us

Dale Carnegie, the great self-improvement author of more than a half-century ago, claimed you can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you. That’s good advice for the church, too. I think it even works with […]