Talk with the Preacher

Monthly Archives: April 2015

Elevator Speech Acts 4:5-12 Christ is risen! Christ is risen, indeed! Today is the fourth Sunday of the season of Easter, typically known as Good Shepherd Sunday—you’ll notice many of the texts in worship today reference that metaphor for Jesus. But we’re sticking with the assigned texts from the book of Acts for these weeks after Easter, following the adventures of Jesus’ first disciples as they struggled to find their footing in… Read More

Today in Chicago I had the honor of delivering the closing talk at Faith Forward 2015, an amazing gathering of progressive Christians who care about the spiritual development of children and youth.  Here are the thoughts I shared: I know you all are jealous, as I know I would be were I you, of the person who gets to be the final speaker here at Faith Forward, you know, to attempt a deeply… Read More

“From the sublime to the ridiculous is but a step.” I’m pretty sure James Joyce wasn’t thinking of the minister’s experience of Holy Week when he wrote that sentence filled with deep and resounding truth, but any minister who has made it, breathing, to the other side of Holy Week will tell you: these words could have been penned for us. This year, for example, it was my full intention that anyone… Read More

Changing Our Minds Acts 3:12-19 Christ is risen! Christ is risen, indeed! Good morning, and welcome to the third Sunday of Easter.  Though many of us grew up with the idea that Easter was one day, in truth the calendar of the church year gives us a whole season of Easter…and it’s a good thing, because getting our minds around resurrection is going to take awhile, isn’t it? You may have noticed… Read More

Yesterday I had the incredible opportunity to offer the opening prayer at the White House Easter Prayer Breakfast.   Loving and gracious God, we come here today with gratitude for your way of love, a love that death could not destroy and a tomb could not contain.  With that acknowledgment, we also confess that we struggle with the brokenness of our world and the responsibilities we bear. You came to proclaim Good… Read More

The Rest of the Story Mark 16:1-8 Easter Sunday I’ll bet it felt a little like sleep-walking, or, maybe like making your way through water with heavy weights strapped to your hands and feet. The Sabbath was over, and three of the women who had followed Jesus for years and who had walked with him all the way to the cross, who had supervised his burial, needed to return to the tomb… Read More

What we’ve done tonight as we’ve listened to Rev. Janka read the gospel text from Mark’s gospel is, in effect, peered into the dynamics of a family dinner. You know those, right? They are the dinners where, from the outside the scene can easily be described objectively, like that famous Norman Rockwell painting of Thanksgiving dinner.  Everyone is leaning in over the table glancing happily at each other.  The mother is proudly… Read More