Thursday, November 29, 2018

Reward


the consequences are their own reward
the actions must be chosen carefully

the rust belt resiliency grinds on
polishing the only metal worth the spit

indeed there is no transparency
when the motivations lack symmetry

love gives and takes, holds and lets go
love is its own reward, waiting to be enjoyed

10/11/17

Advent



Almighty God, give us grace to cast away the works of darkness, and put on the armor of light, now in the time of this mortal life in which your Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge both the living and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal; through him who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen. (First Sunday of Advent BCP 211)

Advent is the season of preparation for the coming of Jesus Christ, into the world and into our hearts. In the Church we prepare and celebrate this coming of Jesus on three levels. The first is Jesus' birth, and the wider world is good about capitalizing on this. We remember Jesus came into the world as a baby, born and laid in a manger. The second is Jesus' coming again to usher in the coming of God's Kingdom. We anticipate this event in the future. The third is Jesus' coming into our hearts and opening us up to God's guidance and wisdom. We celebrate this in the present, as we know ourselves to be imbued with the Holy Spirit.

The gospel passages we will hear this season on Sunday mornings will be Jesus and John the Baptist talking about what it means to get ready and when to get ready. This coming Sunday Jesus reminds his disciples to be ready at all times, because we do not know when Jesus will come again. Indeed, we know Jesus has come, will come, and comes into our hearts over and over again everyday. Our daily lives are full of the gifts of the coming of Jesus. The season of Advent reminds us to be prepared for Jesus and to pay attention to his coming, in every way in which he shows up.

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Giving Thanks


11/16/18 

Almighty and gracious Father, we give you thanks for the fruits of the earth in their season and for the labors of those who harvest them. Make us, we pray, faithful stewards of your great bounty, for the provision of our necessities and the relief of all who are in need, to the glory of your Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen. (Thanksgiving Day BCP 246)

Less than seven days until Thanksgiving!! Its go time! Preheat the oven! Prepare the pie crusts! Bake the cookies! Thanksgiving in contemporary culture seems to be a day simply about the food. And increasingly, it seems like we have to rush through the food to get to the Black Friday sales... starting on Thursday.

It is important to set aside regular times to be thankful. Given all the gifts we are given, by God and our communities, we could really be setting aside a day a week to honor them all! However, setting aside one day to share with your family or friends how truly thankful you are is good for the soul. Perhaps this year, before you dig into the deliciousness, take a moment to each share something you are grateful for, to give thanks.

I know I am thankful for each of you. I am grateful for our caring community, especially for the ways in which you have all worked with me through my broken shoulder. I am thankful for the Shepherd's Green Community Food Pantry and all its volunteers. I am thankful for the many ways in which we connect St. John's and Grace with the wider community of Franklin. I am thankful for the time and effort you each give to make our community a safe and welcoming place. I thank you!

Music


the soundtrack of a lifetime
simple settings in the background
a table here, a chair over there
the carpet pathways carrying

the melody of daily routine
the patterns only we can see
punctuated by the harmonies
of the intersection of our lives with others

10/6/17

Friday, November 9, 2018

Savor

Savor

the bridal veil of spiderwebs

trailed behind in the flow

air artfully streaming

in the curved aerodynamic symmetries

glinting in the sun

9/26/17

Thursday, November 1, 2018

Invitation

Illness is an invitation
Into another way of being
Coming without fanfare
Or even cream colored paper
Yet you stand invited nonetheless

An invitation like so many others
Giving pause for preparations
Bringing worry as to wardrobe
Unprepossessing all the same
A chance to look at life again

All Souls Day


Aka the Commemoration of All Faithful Departed.

"O God, the Maker and Redeemer of all believers: Grant to the faithful departed the unsearchable benefits of the passion of your Son; that in the day of his appearing they may be manifested as your children; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen." (Holy Women, Holy Men, p. 665)

In the official calendar of church feasts, November 2nd is the day of remembrance and celebration of all those saints whom me have known and love but aren't known to the wider world. All Saints Day (Nov 1) celebrates the official church Saints, the ones known by everyone, like St. John, St. Patrick, St. Lucy. All Souls Day is for our local communities, for us to remember those who have walked among us who have been faithful followers of Jesus.

Every year we lose church members, friends, family, who have been for us examples of Godly life. We remember them and the ways that they have influenced us to be better disciples. Our remembrance of them also calls us to be role models and faithful teachers and mentors of those around us who are new to the faith or struggling in some way in their lives.

Here at St. John's we remember all those who have touched our hearts and lives who have gone to be with God. The names of Jane Judson, Linda Trikur, and many others will be read in church on Sunday as we take a moment to give thanks for their lives and their contributions to our community.