Craft of Preaching

Dear Working Preacher

Insights, ideas and inspiration related to the coming week's lectionary texts.

Holy Conversation

Wow. It sure doesn’t take long to go from grumbling to arguing, from complaining to quarreling. And it seems it doesn’t take much, either. I

Manna Again

The Gospel of John is a dangerous book. In the hands of those who need or want a God who chooses sides, a God they can control, a God who excludes, a God

Sign, Sign, Everywhere A Sign

Dear Working Preachers, have you noticed that signs are often misinterpreted? While we count on them to point us in the right direction, with everything

Being Fed

I know what you’re thinking, Dear Working Preachers. Five weeks of John 6. The bane of a preacher’s existence. Wishing you had taken a vacation,

Letting Go

Deserted places are critical places. They are not always comfortable, although here in Mark Jesus seems to imply that they are. But that would be a grand

Beheading the Gospel

Here’s the thing, Dear Working Preachers. We all know that Mark’s Gospel is the Reader’s Digest Condensed Version of the Jesus’

Rejection

It’s no accident that Jesus’ rejection in his hometown synagogue immediately precedes the mission of the “twelve.” “The kingdom

A Lesson from Mark

We preachers are intercalators. Maybe at some point in time, we learned to be so from Mark. This is Mark’s specialty, of course -- inserting one story

Crossing the Kingdom

Transitions matter.

“On that day” -- on what day, exactly? Inquiring minds want to know, Mark.

Well, on the same day, as it turns out, that

On Trusting

“The earth produces on its own.” Thank God, literally.

Every once in a while Jesus gives us a break -- a break from the demands of bringing

Out of Our Minds

“Out of his mind.” That seems about right when it comes to perceptions of what we believe, whom we follow, and how we live as Christians. Accusations

A Sabbath Perspective

This past week was the 26th Festival of Homiletics in Washington, D.C., “Preaching and Politics.” An appropriate place and theme for times such

If the Trinity Mattered

Confession time -- I am not a systematic theologian. So when it comes to saying something about the Trinity, the theological hairs on the back of my head

A True Pentecost

Pentecost Sunday. A rather troubling misnomer, after all. Because even though we know in theory that the Spirit was never meant to be contained to one Sunday

Prayers Needed

Back in February, I was the presenter at a woman’s retreat, my fourth year in a row with a group of women from this particular church. The retreat