There are so many horrific events in the news. What do we do with the tumult of feelings that rushes through us when we hear about them? How do we navigate this world of lightning-fast news and online echo chambers where we can block particular perspectives and opinions? In these charged, gut-wrenching times, how do we process information and determine what course of action might align with our values? In seminary a professor assigned “reaction/response papers.”
This week I’ve spent some time with my five-month-old daughter in the lounge outside a hospital’s intensive care unit. It looks like the person we’re here to see will make a full recovery. But hanging out here means rubbing shoulders with other people whose loved ones are not so fortunate. The default position is to respect other people’s privacy, but some people want to talk.
Larry wondered what Stan wanted to see him about. Stan was not the sort of parishioner who often asked for counsel or help with a problem.
Around 3:30, an SUV bearing the local TV station's logo pulled up. Thomas wondered how they knew about the service project.
Richard Rohr has written his most sage, most important book yet. Its message is straightforward and bracing: the spiritual life is not static.
In this reading from Luke we confront stark and conflictual sayings of Jesus that sit poorly with contemporary images of God. Our culture seems to prize a God with an infinite capacity for empathy, a God who is “nice.” Luke challenges this thinking. He offers a glimpse of redemption for a world that is anything but nice—and that needs much more than a nice God to redeem it.