Give Thanks, Lose Sleep

Yeah, ok, I'm not entirely sure what I mean by that title either. Maybe, if you take in my sermon from Sunday, you can help me figure it out? See, "what had happened was"...with our office schedule greatly reduced due to Thanksgiving week, I had to choose my sermon title four days earlier than normal. …

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Right Time, Right Place, Right Woman

What are the stories that stay with us? Great stories that are compelling and rich? That question opens my most recent sermon. A sermon influenced by Jesus' parable on talents from Matthew's gospel -- but a sermon responding much more to the book of Esther (we couldn't read the whole thing so joined here with …

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Love God and Love Your Neighbor with Your Vote

I just got back from voting. It is a beautiful day -- sunny and not too cold -- and our polling place is close by, so I walked over. It is also a beautiful day for democracy in USAmerica. Or at least it should be. Republicans in many parts of the country have been up …

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Meet Him Inside

Our sermon series, “Privilege and Promise: This is America” concluded a few weeks back with a powerful sermon from Pastor Danita and an insightful special guest on the Zoom chat following worship. By the end of that Zoom call, I felt encouraged and hopeful about the leader of the Woodridge Police Department, the culture that …

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One more question

Sometimes the pieces fall into place. Look, I know there are plenty of reasons to be infuriated with a whole lot of Christian churches and people: White supremacy and nationalism; spreading QAnon nonsense; supporting Trump, to name three of the worst. But at Woodridge UMC we are doing our very best to be as open, …

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Questions abound

Sermon time! Boy, if that doesn't get you excited, what will?? This was one of those weeks that I suspect happen to all preachers at some point: "Still trying to find that spark for the sermon," I texted my colleague Saturday afternoon. Did I find it eventually? That, dear reader, is up to you. The …

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‘This is America’

We said from the beginning that our sermon series, “Privilege and Promise: This is America,” would make us all uncomfortable. We said from the beginning that this series would make us incensed and mournful. We said from the beginning that this series would challenge us but also, we hoped, teach us. We said from the …

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Inescapable Intersectionality

Attempting a deep dive into the history, and reality, of racism in USAmerica and in Christianity -- while also forging a path toward becoming actively anti-racist -- via a sermon series could very easily go awry. But at Woodridge UMC, with the Rev. Danita R. Anderson as our Lead Pastor, it very much did not …

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Are you tired? I bet you’re tired

How about a Labor Day-themed sermon? That's what I offered on Sunday. Inspirations this week: Scripture texts from Romans 13 and the Gospel of Matthew 16. Local broadcaster and Chicago treasure, Laurence Holmes has long been my favorite radio show host. He is fantastic at interviews and I enjoy a good origin story, so his …

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Vital Conversations

"Can we get back to politics?" "Please!" Kidding! (Mostly.) My last post about my dad garnered more views and interactions than just about anything else I've written here. I really appreciate that and intend to write more like that soon. But I'm also deeply invested in the ongoing sermon series at Woodridge UMC, "Privilege and …

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