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Jesus

Joy and Affliction

Joy and Affliction 150 150 Nicole

In this third week of Advent we are reminded of the joy that comes with understanding the significance of Jesus’ birth. It is with a fair bit of disorientation, however, that I approach this meditation as the week has issued circumstances that are far from joyful: An Aunt who is close to death; a beautiful,…

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Poor Worm, Listen

Poor Worm, Listen 150 150 Nicole

Image of an etching by artist William Strutt in 1896. Isaiah 11:6,7: The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the lion and the yearling together; and a little child will lead them. The cow will feed with the bear, their young will lie down…

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Hope: Holding Together

Hope: Holding Together 150 150 Nicole

The key is hope, by, Greer Snyder On Sunday, the first of Advent, our family sat at the dinner table after church for a meal. I was still trying to assemble our Advent wreath while we talked about the meaning of lighting the first candle: hope. We began discussing the reasons Jesus came to be…

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Oration and Power and Ignoring the Rest

Oration and Power and Ignoring the Rest 150 150 Nicole

English: Jesus Christ – detail from Deesis mosaic, Hagia Sophia, Istanbul (Photo credit: Wikipedia)   In the past few weeks, I have been researching discourse in antiquity (approximately 2nd century BCE to 3rd century CE). One particular source by Caroline Vander Stichele and Todd Penner focuses on the role of appearance and outward characteristics that…

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Slow Ideas: Reimagining Church

Slow Ideas: Reimagining Church 150 150 Nicole

Chinese depiction of Jesus and the rich man (Mark 10) – 1879, Beijing, China (Photo credit: Wikipedia)   I just read an article by, Atul Gawande, entitled, “Slow Ideas”-   (http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2013/07/29/130729fa_fact_gawande)   Atul Gawande says, “We yearn for frictionless, technological solutions. But people talking to people is still the way that norms and standards change.”…

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Tending Gardens

Tending Gardens 150 150 Nicole

I just read a beautiful description of the mission of Christ (though, not explicit) from a postmodern marketing guru, Seth Godin:Gardens, not buildingsGreat projects start out feeling like buildings. There are architects, materials, staff, rigid timelines, permits, engineers, a structure.It works or it doesn’t.Build something that doesn’t fall down. On time.But in fact, great projects,…

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The Matter of Matter and How it Matters

The Matter of Matter and How it Matters 150 150 Nicole

Mass map of Abell 1689. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)   A short preface: recently, there have been a number of articles published that include the cute phrase, “matter matters” and the like. Full disclosure: I have such an article in the archives of my blog—while preceding these by some fair measure . . . . But,…

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Glory and the Ottawa People

Glory and the Ottawa People 150 150 Nicole

The Ottawa people (Odawa), the name meaning, “to trade,” are a First Nations people. The name Trader was extended to the Ottawa because they were known as intertribal traders and barterers. This office continued as Europeans and others arrived exploring the land. The Ottawa were mediators, easily moving among and between tribes—and, then, the European settlers that…

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Deep Church and the Courage to Not Lose Nerve

Deep Church and the Courage to Not Lose Nerve 150 150 Nicole

Icon of the Pentecost (Photo credit: Wikipedia) When recently doing a word study at the bequest of my mother, I had a bit of an epiphany regarding my relationship to the Spirit. I found that there were no instances, in either testament, of any person asking for the Holy Spirit to come. There are, however,…

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Sifted to be Strengthened

Sifted to be Strengthened 150 150 Nicole

I love this insight from Richard Rohr on spiritual authority: “Loving servanthood and foundational surrender are the true basis for teaching authority in the Church, much more than title, vestment, role, or office. Such lives have the living authority of Jesus himself, and need no special ordination or public validation. Jesus says to Simon Peter…

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