Fellowship of Saints and Sinners

Fellowship of Saints and Sinners

Suffering Archives

Faith from the Underside

Faith turned over to the side that doesn’t capture the light: the underbelly of trust in God—or is it distrust?—so often not shown.  At first glance, Barbara Brown Taylor’s latest book, Learning To Walk in the Dark, seems an exercise […]

Grace Sticks…Even In Church

Sometimes God shows up in unlikely places. Take church for example. This past Sunday during the prayers of the people, a beautiful couple stood up to ask the congregation to agree with them in faith that their little boy would […]

God of the Gaps: Survey Finds Americans Pray More in Disasters

It’s another week of hermitic writing, I’m afraid, so you’ll be hearing less from me as I push through edits from a second revision. But this morning I stumbled upon a report from Religion Today which I found interesting in […]

Why I Need a God Who Wears a Cross: A Meditation for Holy Week

It wasn’t supposed to be this way.  This final victory lap of the book; the last touches on a manuscript that I now a bit bashfully would let other eyes see for the very first time: they were supposed to […]

“A Brief for the Defense”

  My favorite poem from the recent series by Andrew Sullivan (The Dish), Poems from the Year, contains refrains from the Old Testament, especially Ecclesiastes.  Even today’s reading from Nehemiah 8, where “the joy of the Lord is my strength,” […]

A Child’s Prayer of Lament

We were driving home from school yesterday when the NPR reports came on.  Another horrific mass killing.  This time at a school.  28 dead, 20 of them children. The sound of gun shots on the school’s loudspeakers were in the […]

The Problem of Athlete’s Foot

Yesterday’s pool excursion with my son, Cameron, may have been a big divine hint that I need to do more preparation for Sunday’s small group discussion on the nature of evil.  My son, afterall, unlike me or my esteemed cohorts, […]

Nature and Grace

If you read yesterday’s sermon, you may have caught some refrains on this theme. The picture I mentioned of the leopard snuggling with a baby antelope might almost pass as a Hallmark card, were it not for the fact that […]

“The Stewardship of Pain”

It was a warm summer day in Vermont when friend and fellow saint and sinner Molly Collins introduced me to Frederick Buechner at his longtime home.  That was some seven years ago. I remember at the time being struck by […]

Faith When the GPS Breaks

By faith, Abraham when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going.  -Hebrews 11:8 Every once in a while I spend my […]

Previous Posts

Mental Health Break—Sprawl II
My favorite band these days is Arcade Fire, and I've featured the Canadian indie rock group before at this intersection between God and life. The lead singer studied Kirkegaard in college and their songs, like this one, are often subtle but brilliant critiques of the least aesthetically pleasing thi

posted 12:58:15pm Dec. 18, 2014 | read full post »

I Can't Breathe and the Widow's Cry—A Guest Post
Fellow saint and sinner Saskia de Vries is a neuroscientist in Seattle, Washington and has posted before at this intersection between God and life. She, like so many of us, is grappling with the tragedies of Eric Garner and Michael Brown and the larger systemic problem they seem to reveal—namely,

posted 2:10:09pm Dec. 11, 2014 | read full post »

Advent and Emptiness, Via Louis CK and the Prophet Isaiah
I've been making my way through the book of Isaiah. This morning's reading was from chapter 6, where the prophet Isaiah receives his call to go to the people of Israel and proclaim God's judgment of a people who have wandered away from God's purposes for them. Isaiah asks how long God's people will

posted 11:45:39am Dec. 09, 2014 | read full post »

Advent Resurrection
It may seem strange to pair Advent with resurrection. Usually resurrection comes more naturally at Easter. But at heart the labor pangs of all creation giving birth to the Christ child are a longing for a new start. Advent is a longing to be born again. Neuroscience now teaches that every minu

posted 2:47:38pm Dec. 04, 2014 | read full post »

Birthday Cred—Ecclesiastes Via David Foster Wallace
Today I'm still (barely) on the left side of 40, and bea

posted 11:01:03am Dec. 01, 2014 | read full post »


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