Tag Archives: kingdom of God

A thin place

The wrapping paper I bought for Christmas three years ago left traces I’m still cleaning up. It was dazzling paper, red with lots of glitter, and it made a beautiful package. It also left glitter everywhere, sparkling crimson flecks I’m not sure will ever go away completely, to remind me of that dazzling Christmas package. […]

Waiting for God

After Jesus astounded people with his teaching (Mark 1:21-28), he went home with Simon and Andrew and cured Simon’s mother-in-law. Neighbors got wind of it, and soon the whole town showed up, bringing everyone who was ill, and he cured many of them – many, but not all (vv. 29-34). And early the next morning, […]

Invitation to life

“Ready or not, here I come!” Remember that line from the hide-and-seek you played as a kid? After counting down from ten or twenty, or from 100 if you had the time, the one who was “It” came searching, eyes wide open, and you hoped you had hidden well enough not to be found. Jesus […]

Waiting faithfully

Waiting is part of life. We wait for election results, for Christmas, for summer vacation, for a loved one to return home, for a phone call bringing the results of a medical test or a job interview, for the birth of a child. We wait for the storm to pass and the sky to clear. […]

Weeds and wheat together

If you want to see a living parable of the kingdom of God, you need only visit the lawn around my house. It’s a lawn our neighbors probably consider embarrassing. Unlike lawns treated liberally with chemicals, the kind of lawns pictured in Home & Garden, the kind advertisers have taught us to think of as […]

Come and see

“Come and see,” Jesus said to those would-be followers who wanted to know where he was staying, and they came and saw, or so the story goes (John 1:39). But often seeing is not as easy as that. I can look and look at what is obvious to someone else and not see a thing. […]

Becoming the Word

We’re still close enough to the season of commencement addresses to remember the advice of Ray Bradbury: “Everyone must leave something behind when he dies, my grandfather said. A child or a book or a painting or a house or a wall built or a pair of shoes made. Or a garden planted. . . […]

My life has been the poem

National Poetry Month, Day 14 // “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans,” John Lennon sang in “Beautiful Boy.” The song was recorded in 1980, but the phrase was a variation of one printed in 1957 in the “Quotable Quotes” column of Reader’s Digest. I don’t know how long before […]

On looking for the ocean

It’s a great metaphor for the spiritual journey, that an airliner is off course more than ninety-eight percent of the time. Countless variables are at work making it drift from its intended flight path. The thing is, the pilots are making constant course corrections, small control adjustments that bring the plane to its intended destination. […]

When you’re desperate enough

How desperate do you feel? Thoreau believed most people “lead lives of quiet desperation” (Walden, “Economy”), not the frantic desperation of someone who’s in imminent danger, but the subtler kind, the low-level anxiety that slowly eats away at us. We may pretend it doesn’t exist, but once in a while it bubbles up and lets […]