Loving one another

At 4:38 am the wail of my emergency phone wakes me from sleep. Ugh. Oh. It’s not going to be a “good” morning today. A dispatcher from the Milwaukee Police Department is on the line. “Good morning, pastor. We are in need of some chaplains to respond to a fire.” Groggily trying to wake myself […]

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Zeal for the Father’s house

Zeal for the Father’s House? What was Jesus doing with a whip in his hand?  And, why was he tipping over tables, and stampeding the cattle and the goats? Look at them run! Why was he freeing the doves? Look at them fly! And, why was he overturning the cash drawers, spilling money all over […]

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Jesus, of all people. In hell, of all places.

In the second reading from 1 Peter 3:19-20 it says that after the crucifixion Jesus went and preached to “the spirits in prison, who in former times did obey.”  “He descended into hell” is how the Apostles’ Creed puts it. We can picture Jesus “on earth”, preaching, teaching, and healing.  We can picture Jesuit “in […]

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Transfiguration, the first and only time a transfiguration happened, took place on a “mountain apart.” It was a day of “dazzling white clothing.” It was day when Elijah and Moses appeared. How? I do not know! It was a day for the building of three dwelling places. It was a day of a cloud. It […]

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Interim – the time between

Isaiah reframes the word “exile” as “interim”: the time between “things of old” and the “new thing” God is about to do. The prophet speaks a word of encourage to a community living in  an interim time.  “Thus says the Lord, the God who created you, Mt Zion, the One who got you started in the […]

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The church: treasure in an earthen vessel

St. Paul gives us the image of a treasure in an earthen vessel.  The earthen vessel is the church — building, budgets, call committee, church council, etc. — Mt. Zion Lutheran Church.  The treasure is Jesus.  Without the treasure, the earthen vessel is just another ordinary clay pot.  Without Jesus, the church is just another […]

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Seek wisdom in ordinary time

Trinity Sunday, which we celebrate this Sunday, marks the beginning of our journey out of the high holy seasons of Advent and Christmas and Epiphany and Lent and Easter into an extended journey through a time in the church year called ordinary time. In ordinary time, we begin to leave the stories of the extraordinary […]

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Where our work begins

In these days and times of instant messaging, texts, tweets, Instagrams, selfies, political turmoil, injustice, disparity, poverty, hopelessness, anger, and fear, God reminds us of what is most important for us to live as the people God has called us to be …“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with […]

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