Anticipating Advent

Advent begins in less than two weeks! That means it is a busy time for me both as a pastor and as an Advent devotional writer. I feel deeply encouraged and honored by the excitement people have expressed for my book Expecting Emmanuel: Eight Women Who Prepared the Way. I know that many of you…

The Books Are Here!

I have received my author copies of Expecting Emmanuel and the book officially launches tomorrow (September 6, 2022)! Those of you who have pre-ordered should receive your books soon, and hopefully you will be able to find the book in your local bookstore well before Advent begins. Launch Party, Party, Party I want to extend…

Thoughts on Luke 1:26-56

This piece was originally published at RevGalBlogPals on December 14, 2020. As the Narrative Lectionary moves into the Gospel of Luke, most of the people in the (virtual) pews will find themselves in more familiar territory. Mary, Gabriel, Elizabeth, “My soul magnifies the Lord.” Ahhhh. There is, I think, a temptation to relish the familiarity;…

Advent Blessing: Peace

It seems that most blessings are for peace(if not love, or faith, or some other such vague ideal)–A few words to calm you down and get you out the door.But this is not that kind of a blessing.It will not make everything OKOr pretend you can escape trouble—for yourself or for this world. This blessing…

Advent Reflection: The Grace of Zechariah’s Silence

(Luke 1:5-25) After the Angel Gabriel’s lengthy proclamation to Zechariah, the father-to-be responds, “How will I know this is so?” Most people assume that Zechariah is questioning the fact that Elizabeth will become pregnant at such an advanced aged. But really, what kind of a stupid question would that be? “How will I know this…

Advent Reflection: Where is God?

I was working on our Christmas Eve program Friday when I heard the news about the shootings in Connecticut. Shootings at an elementary school. An elementary school. Dead bodies–little bodies–sprawled on the floor. Bloody children. Wailing parents. It was hard to get back into the Christmas spirit after hearing that news. Hard to write about the coming of…

Advent Reflections–How Shall This Be?

I don’t know about you, but I have been particularly eager for Advent this year. It feels good to have the tree up and the lights lit and the holiday music playing in the background. This year I put together an Advent devotional for my church and will post the pieces each day on the…