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Reflection

Fire in the Sky

Fire Over the Lake

Light in Darkness Journal

Words & Light

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Transitions

Back in August, I wrote this:

Since the last time I wrote something here, the basement of our apartment flooded, our dishwasher gushed water over our kitchen, our bathroom caught fire, I’ve been at camp, where I broke my face playing football, and had facial reconstruction surgery and spent a night in the hospital. And my blog theme got mixed up too.

All is good though…God’s been faithful through all of it (especially the facial breakage). Everything could have been a lot worse. But, needless to say, our lives have been crazy, and this blog has taken a back seat to all of that.

Now I’m in the middle of a new semester, which will give me something to write about, but I’m going to work on rebranding the blog (possibly moving to a custom domain) when I have spare time.

So check back every once in a while. I’ll write again soon!

Peace!

I obviously have not written much (on this blog). My wife and I needed to make some tough decisions about school and work (she’s a nursing student). So we’ve made the decisions, and we’re trying to get back in the grove.

It’s been a season of drought in all aspects of writing/creativity for me: academic, preaching, and recreational. The blogs loses everytime.

But I have been mulling some things over for the blog, and I’m looking to get it started back up again, primarily  because I think it will be good for me. I’ve gone back to the old title “hope rising” because it is one of my fundamental convictions that our world is in desperate need of hope, and I am in desperate need of hope myself.

Over the next few weeks, I will be designing a new site, where I’ll write about hope, renewal, the kingdom of God, and missional church. I also plan to showcase a little of my amateur photography. For the time being, I’ll post any new content here, but you’ll eventually need to switch your RSS feeds or subscriptions if you’re so inclined.

In the meantime, grace and peace to you and your house.

Give Me Hope in the Darkness

This song is haunting. “Ghosts (That We Knew)” by Mumford & Sons

You saw my pain, washed out in the rain
Broken glass, saw the blood run from my veins
But you saw no fault, no cracks in my heart
And you knelt beside, my hope torn apart
But the ghosts that we knew will flicker from you
And we’ll live a long life

So give me hope in the darkness that I will see the light
Cause oh that gave me such a fright
But I will hold as long as you like
Just promise me we’ll be alright

So lead me back
Turn south from that place
And close my eyes from my recent disgrace
Cause you know my call
And we’ll share my all
Now children come and they will hear me roar

So give me hope in the darkness that I will see the light
Cause oh that gave me such a fright
But I will hold as long as you like
Just promise me that we’ll be alright

But hold me still bury my heart on the cold
And hold me still bury my heart on the cold

So give me hope in the darkness that I will see the light
Cause oh that gave me such a fright
But I will hold on as long as you like
Just promise me that we’ll be alright

But the ghosts that we knew will flicker from you
And we’ll live a long life

 

The Imago Dei and the Cross

I will be leading some high school students in a discussion of the relationship between the Imago Dei and de-humanization through violence, in a frame work of a theology of the cross. Here are two articles that I’ve found immensely helpful:

The Irreducible Image: Finding the Imago Dei in the Aftermath of Genocide via yale.edu [download PDF]

The Theology of the Cross: A Usable Past via elca.org [download pdf]

Towards a Theology of Divine Brokenness

A recent sermon I preached, hoping to move towards a theology of divine blessed brokenness. My attempt to reconcile the hope of the gospel with depth of suffering in this world. It’s not perfect, and I probably misspoke on somethings, but its where I’m at with this.

“Broken Vessels” at STCCC

Since Last Time I Wrote….

Since the last time I wrote something here, the basement of our apartment flooded, our dishwasher gushed water over our kitchen, our bathroom caught fire, I’ve been at camp, where I broke my face playing football, and had facial reconstruction surgery and spent a night in the hospital. And my blog theme got mixed up too.

All is good though…God’s been faithful through all of it (especially the facial breakage). Everything could have been a lot worse. But, needless to say, our lives have been crazy, and this blog has taken a back seat to all of that.

Now I’m in the middle of a new semester, which will give me something to write about, but I’m going to work on rebranding the blog (possibly moving to a custom domain) when I have spare time.

So check back every once in a while. I’ll write again soon!

Peace!

The Christian Story Isn’t Boring

Here’s a bit from a sermon I preached a few weeks ago. This section didn’t make the final draft, but I wanted to share it:

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The Christian story is one of the most multi-faceted stories that have ever been told. If we allow the fullness of the story to breathe and to move, there is something in it that can capture everyone. I firmly believe that the Christian story is the most compelling reality we have. If you were to believe what people would say about the Christian life, you might be tempted to think that following Jesus is a boring, oppressive, mundane existence. You might be tempted to think that it’s for people who need a crutch or people who have this sadistic tendency to make life as miserable as possible. Or you might be tempted to think that it just about religion, rule-following.

 

But we know better, don’t we? Those of us who have leaned into the kind of life that Jesus calls us to live know that its not boring, that its not miserable. We know its the best way to live. Unless of course, we’ve believed the lie…that the Christian story and life is boring and stale. But how could we think that?

 

This morning, we talked about this awesome story from Exodus 19. And awesome is about the only word that can aptly describe it. We tried to allow this story to jump off the flannel graph and draw us into it. God declares that Israel is a people for his possession, that they are a a kingdom of priests and a holy nation for him. And then in this awesome moment he declares that he is coming to the people, and he descends on Mount Sinai in power and thunder and lightning and trumpet blasts and a thick cloud. And as the Creator God rests on this mountain, Moses takes the trembling people out to meet God.

 

You don’t get a better story than that. There’s no fiction that can beat this reality.

 

Douglass Hall on Relentless Discipleship

Discipleship of the crucified Christ is characterized by a faith that drives its adherents into the world with a relentlessness and a daring they could not manage on the basis of human volition alone.[1]


[1] Douglass John Hall, The Cross in Our Context. pg 183


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