I am so sad.  The tragedies of Baton Rouge, St Paul, and Dallas seem like an unfair piling on of evil and horror.  Such news disturbs my conscience and interrupts my complacency.  The racism, fear, injustice and horror of these events seem too big for my little life or the insufficient gift of my faith.  I am tempted to want to stay off the news and pretend this tragedy is far enough away from me that there is no reason why I should even address it.

After all what can I do?  What can we do?

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Two Special Nights

I want to invite you to two great nights of class starting this Monday. The following two Mondays I am teaching a second tier class on John Wesley. John Wesley’s story and message are critical for us as United Methodists to know and adopt to our life. I believe the we live in times very similar to those of John Wesley. His searching for faith and witness have a lot to offer to us now.

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It Is Finished

Jesus said, “It is finished.” Then he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.  What in your life do you need to finish?  Is it your doubt that holds you back?  Is it the power of the past that still haunts you today?  Is it fear? Is it the brokenness of relationships or the inability to reconcile?  Jesus said, “It is finished.”  Let the the power of Good Friday lead you to Easter where what is finished can lead to the impossible is God’s gift to you.

Holy Thursday

It must have been a restless night.  As quiet and out of the public view as Wednesday was, Thursday would be never forgotten by the world.  The quiet time spent with friends was about to turn into the horror of betrayal, scorn and abuse by those who hated Jesus.

It was Passover, a great day of celebration where families gathered together to remember their God has delivered them when they were trapped in bondage.  The joy in the streets mirrored the preparations for holy meals and special times being prepared in every room in the holy city.

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Holy Tuesday

Last night Jesus was back in Bethany.  The turmoil of the overturned tables of yesterday brought intense attention upon him as he reentered the Temple this morning.  The Pharisees and religious protectors of temple tradition hated him for his actions.  To them he was a trouble maker and perhaps worst.  To others, he was a breath of fresh hope and a new found hero.  He carried for them the possibility change was coming and their hope for a better place in the social order was placed on his shoulders.

This morning, the minute he entered the Temple, all eyes were on him.  Some with stares of hate and others with adoration.  Today what he would do or say would confirm his future.

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Holy Monday

This is a week filled with more drama and revelation than any other in the history of the world.  Each of the four Gospels make that clear as they tell the story of the final days of Jesus’ life before the Resurrection.

It is not surprising the four Gospels all represent these final days differently.  They share many of the same events.  Each has included moments others did not record. (for example Matthew and Mark tell the story of Jesus cursing a fig tree Matthew 22: 18-22 and Mark 11: 12-14,20-26. and Luke or John do not include it).   In a few places, teachings of Jesus some of the Gospels recorded earlier in his ministry are woven into the Passion week narrative of others.  The Gospel of John includes long sections unique to itself. (much of John 13,14 and 15).

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