Category Hope

And Some of the Words are Theirs

Today would have been my seventh wedding anniversary. Instead, it’s the second anniversary marking that our lives no longer one. In many ways, I’ve already given today its due during the eighteen days I was recently in Montreat. He and I worked together on Montreat Summer Staff as college students. He proposed at a dear […]

This Is Our Story

We’re a mess, but we’ll be alright, in this glorious story you write. I spent the last two weeks keynoting Montreat Youth Conferences with my colleague and friend James Goodlet. While we did not meet until seminary, James and I grew up attending youth conferences with our home churches. We are products of Montreat. It’s […]

Freedom Train

I haven’t blogged in about a year because, honestly, my life has been an unraveling hot mess. Last January, I chose the word “freedom” as my word for 2014. At the time, I thought this would be the year I learned what it was like to live into the freedom of cancer no longer being […]

Some Lady Holding A Baby

A few days before Christmas two years ago I was standing in a grocery store check-out line when the customer in front of me asked the clerk if she had any Christmas stamps. The conversation went like so: Customer: “Do you have Christmas stamps?” Clerk: “No. We just have Liberty Bell and some lady holding […]

Blue Christmas

This time last December 13, I crafted two prayers for Church Health Reader’s winter edition featuring Blue Christmas and Longest Night Services while I sat in a surgical waiting room. My mom had a liter of fluid in her right lung, so a surgical oncologist inserted a chest tube to remove the fluid. This is a […]

Choreographing a Crisis

As a chaplain and pastor, I am inevitably with folks during periods of crisis, trauma, and chaos.  One of my mantras that I repeat time and time again to families during such times is, “Your crisis. Your call. Your choreography.” I say this because often folks try to please everyone else in their extended family, […]

Joy in the Mourning

A sermon preached prior to communion at Presbyterian Church of Western Springs, IL July 7, 2013 Psalm 30 I exalt you, Lord, because you pulled me up; you didn’t let my enemies celebrate over me. Lord, my God, I cried out to you for help and you healed me. Lord, you brought me up from […]