Full of Years

If you value people who are older—and also your own aging—these entries will help you rejoice in the fullness of this stage of life: its gritty realities, secret joys, hidden spirituality and cherished moments—reasons to be grateful that old age is always a gift from God!

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Strange metaphors II

This entry is part of an occasional series in which metaphorical ideas find their way onto your screen. Its roots are simple: There may be life lessons to find in just about anything. Maybe not all that strange…? My recent trip to a laundromat got me thinking about Baptism. (As Titus 3:5 has it, “the washing of regeneration.”) How Baptism might be like God doing the laundry. Let me set the scene:MORE...

Groaning prayer?

Today’s entry is actually one long question—a personal one, something along the line of “Does this ever happen to you?” What follows is one of those wonderings, this time about prayer. Sometimes when I am alone with my thoughts—writing late at night; driving out in the countryside; reading e-mail, a book or journal or just sitting and thinking—I find my thoughts suddenly frozen in time and placeMORE...

Bearing the Word

We baptized Wesley on Mother’s Day. A grandchild of the congregation, Wesley was welcomed into the community, but also invited into the work we share: “Bearing God’s creating and redeeming word to all the world.” Funny word, bearing. Maybe even a little bit archaic…. Its derivation goes back to ancient languages in Northern Europe, all of those linguistic roots denoting work. When you bearMORE...

(Dis)oriented?

Trying to find words to express what many of us may experience during these troubled times, I keep coming back to the idea of “disorientation.” When things seem especially out-of-whack—right now?—that descriptor feels useful. These few thoughts…. Our 1 sense of place and direction is an essential part of our neurobiology. Most of us possess adequate proprioception skills—awareness of the locationMORE...

“The soul of a pastor”

That’s the phrase I recently used to describe the kindness of a reader, someone whose character matches the traits and calling of so many pastors I have known. It occurs to me that the same description might match you. Some thoughts… At their core, most pastors are kind and caring. Mixed into the various roles they take on—e.g., preacher, counselor, teacher, administrator—are those that transcendMORE...

What (else) is on the line?

Every day I hear or read that “democracy is on the line,” its core benefits threatened or disappearing. While I agree with those sentiments, there’s probably more at stake than this form of government that we cherish. It’s not difficult to find other elements of our personal and national existence that are perhaps fading or under attack. Each element is an essential component of the over-archingMORE...

Strange metaphors I

This entry is part of an occasional series in which metaphors of dubious worth find their way onto your screen. Its roots are simple: I may have too much time on my hands OR there may be life lessons to find in just about anything. Maybe not all that strange…?  I hold in my frustrated hands a slender produce bag. If it’s ever opened by my clumsy fingers, it will hold fresh veggies or fruit that IMORE...

Bible study exultation (continued)

When last I wrote about the benefits of weekly Bible study groups in congregations, I left out a few thoughts. Here are some of them…. Our group’s Scripture conversations are an extension (or preview) of the proclamation of The Word in weekly worship. Whether based on the lectionary or not, Bible study somehow always connects with what has been (or will be) shared in a Sunday service. ThisMORE...

Easter in Russia

  In a few days, members of Russian Orthodox churches will celebrate Easter. I’ve been trying to imagine how it might feel for them to experience Easter this year. These believers—and Christians of other faith communities—may find themselves in contexts similar to those faced by Jesus’ followers on that first Easter. Those first disciples lived in a country tightly controlled by tyrants andMORE...

Easter sacrifices

From a minor theme in Eastertide, this question, “Who sacrificed their well-being to take care of Jesus’ body?” To say that another way, someone has to pay for the cost of preparing a corpse for burial. In some cultures, the death of a loved one can bring a family into poverty, perhaps made worse when the primary breadwinner has died. In Jesus’ case, Nicodemus paid for the burial site—giving awayMORE...

Bob Sitze

BOB SITZE has filled the many years of his lifework in diverse settings around the United States. His calling has included careers as a teacher/principal, church musician, writer/author, denominational executive staff member and meat worker. Bob lives in Wheaton, IL.

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