Monday, December 31, 2007
optimism in the New Year
but it is a source of inspiration,
of vitality and hope where others have resigned;
it enables a man to hold his head high,
to claim the future for himself
and not to abandon it to his enemy.
-- Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Sunday, December 30, 2007
A rabbi was present at the creation. After the sixth day, when the Lord was resting, he looked at his handiwork and turned to the rabbi and asked, "Well, Rabbi, what do you think? Are you optimistic or pessimistic?" The rabbi hesitated, frowned deeply, shook his head and clucked his tongue and finally said to the Lord, "Well, I'm optimistic."
And the Lord, in surprise, said, "Well, if you're optimistic, why are you frowning?"
And the rabbi said, "I'm frowning because I believe my optimism is unjustified."
-- Herman Kahn
Saturday, December 29, 2007
coming of light
Friday, December 28, 2007
-- Carol Nelson
Thursday, December 27, 2007
our treasure in clay jars
For it is the God who said,
"Let light shine out of darkness,"
who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
But we have this treasure in clay jars,
so that it may be made clear that this extraordinary power belongs to God and does not come from us.
-- 2 Corinthians 4:6-7
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
All of the stores are closed -- virtually no traffic on the streets -- no church services.
The streets were not plowed -- I only got stuck once.
Kids playing with their new toys -- adults looking for leftovers from dinner -- dogs outside enjoying the new snow.
I wish we had more evenings like this when the world briefly shuts down.
These are the times that call for thought and reflection on the past year -- anticipation of the new.
We need more of these times of rest.
Turn back, my soul, to your rest
for the LORD has been good,
and has kept my soul from death,
(my eyes from tears,)
my feet from stumbling.
-- Psalm 116 (Grail)
Tuesday, December 25, 2007
Christmas Eve at Cross of Glory
The Baby Jesus is what Christmas is all about!
Sunday, December 23, 2007
so little has changed
Let us remember our service men & women and their families in our prayers.
Now is the time.
-- Rick Warren
Saturday, December 22, 2007
Sunday School Christmas program - 3
Friday, December 21, 2007
Sunday School Christmas program - 2
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Sunday School Christmas program - 1
These pictures are from last Sunday at St. Anthony Park Lutheran Church in St. Paul, Minnesota.
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
Why is the baby crying
On this, his special day,
When we have brought him lovely gifts
And laid them on the hay?
He’s crying for the people
Who greet this day with dread
Because somebody dear to them
Is far away or dead,
For all the men and women
Whose love affairs went wrong,
Who try their best at merriment
When Christmas comes along,
For separated parents
Whose turn it is to grieve
While children hang their stockings up
Elsewhere on Christmas Eve,
For everyone whose burden
Carried through the year,
Is heavier at Christmastime,
The season of good cheer.
That’s why the baby’s crying
There in the cattle stall:
He’s crying for those people.
He’s crying for them all.
-- Wendy Cope
Sunday, December 16, 2007
Whom do we need?
Saturday, December 15, 2007
Grant that we may not grow tired and weak
but be kept strong by your healing presence.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God for ever and ever.
Friday, December 14, 2007
-- Sister Wendy
Thursday, December 13, 2007
the church, infallibility & God
-- Sister Wendy
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
the pressures of Christmas
Sunday, December 09, 2007
At this time of year, like many of you, I start to cringe at all the fake cheer. I feel that if I see one more over-decorated store, I will choke. Most of these stores are filled with poorly made goods that nobody needs and the very air feels clogged with tinsel.
I want to run away to a clean room with a decorated tree and a pine-scented candle on the mantelpiece. I want to sit in a cozy armchair and read a good book to my kid while we drink cocoa.
Then, it will feel like Christmas.
Don't add more to your to-do list this year. Subtract anything you can if it makes you feel dis-spirited. Only add activities if they make it feel more like Christmas to you!
Thursday, December 06, 2007
works & faith
-- Hillary Clinton
Tuesday, December 04, 2007
before & after
It is important to nurture constantly the life of the Spirit of Jesus - which is the eternal life - that is already in us. Baptism gave us this life, the Eucharist maintains it, and our many spiritual practices - such as prayer, meditation, spiritual reading, and spiritual guidance - can help us to deepen and solidify it. The sacramental life and life with the Word of God gradually make us ready to let go of our mortal bodies and receive the mantle of immortality. Thus death is not the enemy who puts an end to everything but the friend who takes us by the hand and leads us into the Kingdom of eternal love.
-- Henri Nouwen Society
Monday, December 03, 2007
Let them put their hope in you, those who know your name;
for you, Lord, have never abandoned those who seek you.
-- Psalm 9