Category Archives: Fear

The Gift of Obstruction

I spoke with three people on Sunday whose life-as-usual had dead-ended. For two it was a life-altering illness. For the other it was a lost job. It was a typical Sunday, really—I suppose I stopped and talked to twenty people between three services, a parish picnic and a hospital call. These days, world unsettled as…

All Grace All the Time

“I was playing golf with a friend,” the man said to me yesterday. “And he said—it must’ve been at the 14th hole, I think—he said, ‘John, do you believe in hell?” He put the club down and asked why such a question. The friend explained that his daughter had been blessed with her first baby,…

Doug’s Comet

  On Saturday I preached the funeral of a great man. Doug McArthur was the Treasurer of Trinity Church in Solebury, Pennsylvania, where I was privileged to minister for eleven years. As I reflected on why Doug had been such a powerful influence in my life, I realized that he was a grand father. He…

A Clean Empty Space

Along with my clergy colleagues, Leslie and Jonathan, I was leading a session last night on fasting, a spiritual practice common to the three monotheistic faiths, Judaism, Christianity and Islam. One man in the group said, “I’ve been worshiping as an Episcopalian for 25 years and this is the first I ever remember anyone talking…

The Faith Float

  “You know how you lie when you’re dating?” That’s the way Peter began his story. Early in their relationship, Marsha asked Peter, “What do you like to do?” Peter said, “I like to swim!” And Marsha said, “Um….me too!” So they got married, and went on their honeymoon to the Outer Banks of North…