We sometimes forget the extremity of Jesus’ language. For Jesus, the cross is hard and cruel. It was not an easy thing to carry. For Jesus, the cross was the place of his rejection and death. It is to this place that Jesus bids us to follow. Is it any wonder, then, that the cross is hard reality in our lives? We feel it viscerally pressing against us. The cross upsets our lives. What is more, taking up our cross means we may need to walk with it for a while. This can be involve walking a difficult and sometimes lonely path. Yet despite all of this, taking up our cross is an act of radical hope.
A few months ago, I wrote a blog entitled “When Words Speak”, which detailed five books that helped inform my faith. It was a pleasure to go through my library and note the books to which I continually return. The spiritual lessons I gleaned from their pages have largely shaped the outward expression of my … Continue reading Take up and Read: Exploring Spiritual Reading
The Desert Fathers and Mothers have been a continuous wealth of spiritual knowledge and insight, their teachings passed down in various volumes and compendiums. One lesson has been particularly popularized. As the story goes; a monastic brother went to Abba Moses and asked for a word of advice regarding the cultivation of a robust spiritual … Continue reading Away and Towards: Cultivating Solitude in a time of Isolation
This article first appeared as an article for The Anglican Church of Canada at https://medium.com/ministrymatters/discovering-lament-why-crying-out-to-god-may-be-good-for-our-souls-23cf60ccfe3a. While out for a walk with my family the other day, we came across another family, also out for a stroll. Mom and Dad were following their two small daughters, each on bright pink bikes with streamers. As we approached … Continue reading Lamentations: Recovering a forgotten discipline.
Do you think Jesus feels invisible in today’s churches, like a guest at a party with whom no one chooses to converse? I mean, sure he was invited. We acknowledge his presence as a point of doctrine. We may even state that the gathering is held in his honor. However, is that where it ends? … Continue reading Bonhoeffer, Statistics, and the True Focus of the Church.
When you think about the celebration of Christmas, what Bible readings do you normally think about? Maybe your mind goes right to the Gospels of Matthew and Luke, with readings detailing the birth of Jesus. Do you see a play-by-play of Mary and Joseph journeying to Bethlehem, the birth in a stable, and the exited … Continue reading The Divine Lover comes
Do you enjoy waiting? Do you search for times of waiting during your day? For example, do you search out the longest line in the grocery store, hoping that you will end up standing behind someone paying in nickels? Do you arrive for your appointments on time, praying that a delay would keep you in the reception … Continue reading Prayerful Waiting