simply, Christian

first Sunday after Epiphany (2021)

contemplating collects

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O LORD, we beseech Thee mercifully to receive the prayers of Thy people who call upon Thee; and grant that they may both perceive and know what things they ought to do, and also may have grace and power faithfully to fulfill the same; through Jesus Christ, Thy Son, our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, . . .

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Posted in: collects

January 10, 2021

reflections on American politics

still looking for God in all the wrong places

Since the horrific events of last Wednesday played out, I have wrestled with how to make sense of them and what to write about them. Instead of writing in the heat of the moment, which would've been anything but thoughtful, I wanted to heed the biblical command to 'be swift to hear [and] slow to speak' (James 1.19). Though I am . . .

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January 09, 2021

Epiphany (2021)

contemplating collects

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O GOD, Who by the leading of a star didst manifest Thy Only-Begotten Son to the Gentiles; Mercifully grant, that we, who know Thee now by faith, may after this life have the fruition of Thy glorious Godhead; through the same, Thy Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, ever one God, . . .

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Posted in: collects

January 06, 2021

looking for God in all the wrong places

reflections on Luke 2.41-52

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Our church follows the Narrative Lectionary, and yesterday's Gospel reading was Luke's record of Mary and Joseph losing track of Jesus after the Feast of the Passover. In this account, Jesus famously asks Mary, "Why did you seek Me? Did you not know that I must be about My Father's business?" (Luke 2.49 NKJV). . . .

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January 04, 2021

a prayer for a new year

[Since the collect for the 2nd Sunday in Christmas is the same as the prior week, I'm going to offer here a prayer from the new year from the pen of Johann Friedrich Starck, a Lutheran pastor in Germany in the first half of the eighteenth century. May it prompt you to prayerfully consider God's great mercy and care of us all in 2021.] . . .

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Posted in: prayer

January 03, 2021

a prayer on New Year's eve

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Last year, we rang in the new year with a small town dance at the American Legion. The hall was packed with people as music and laughter filled the air with the traditional spirit of New Year's reverie. This New Year's eve will be more sober, as we plan to sit around a fire ring with a very small number of close friends, . . .

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Posted in: prayer

December 31, 2020

Sunday after Christmas (2020)

contemplating collects

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ALMIGHTY and Everlasting God, direct our actions according to Thy good pleasure, that in the Name of Thy beloved Son, we may be made to abound in good works; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. Amen.

-- Common Service Book . . .

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Posted in: collects

December 27, 2020

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