ordinary… mostly

"God has a plan. God's plan is us." — H. Hollowell

Things seen at a Turks game

  • One barbershop chorus singing the national anthem (hey – they’re gonna get promoted to the big leagues!)
  • Five chicken trucks, northbound
  • Two loads of hay, southbound
  • Freezie pop kids (The Turks ask that you return foul balls, so they offer Freezie pops in return. Hordes of kids take off every time a ball leaves the field.)
  • Cousins, serendipitously. (All the children have free tickets from the library, and it’s the last home game of the season.)
  • Intern contests (The last hurrah for the summer volunteers. Wheelbarrow races, dizzy bat, other embarrassments.)
  • A 50/50. One yard of tickets for $5.
  • One load of logs, northbound
  • One sheepish driver getting pulled over for a traffic infraction, just beyond the right field wall
  • The Ordinary Family leaving at the seventh-inning stretch with the home team up 7-1. Some of us are getting sleepy.

On the way home, we sang ‘Wagon Wheel’, in honor of some of Harrisonburg’s favorites

(Late breaking update… The Turks win, 7-3! Good night!)

Summer camp fun

How not to Facebook

I messed up a few days ago.

One of my friends was extolling the virtues of the Trump/Pence ticket on Facebook. He went so far as to say he’d question the salvation of any Christian who wouldn’t vote for them on election day.

I responded with something snarky like, “Better start questioning my salvation then, but just remember Romans 14 as you do.”

I was blocked. Just like that. Not a word in response.

I have lots of opinions about Trump and Pence, but since I’ve already messed up online political talk once this week, let’s not go there.

Instead, let’s talk about hospitality.

You’d think I’d know by now… tongue-in-cheek jokes don’t work online. No one hears your tone of voice when you’re attempting some light-hearted teasing about sensitive topics. But somehow, I forgot once again how the voice in my head doesn’t make it through the ether.

On Facebook, you can’t tell that I’m smiling when I say, “Go ahead… question my salvation. I’m ok with that. It will probably make me a better Christian.” You can’t tell that I’m asking for gentleness and mercy for myself as you judge me, because I’m always in need of a little grace. (If you haven’t already looked up Romans 14 this might be the time to stop and read it.)

I failed to think about context.

I failed to remember the needs of my friend.

I failed to consider that a little teasing among friends that you see frequently is not the same as teasing someone that you haven’t seen for many years.

I failed to extend hospitality.

And that’s sad, because nothing matters more to me than hospitality.

When I fail to extend hospitality, that’s when you can really start questioning my salvation…

“Lord, when was it that we saw you. . . .a stranger. . . .and did not take care of you?” Then he will answer them, “Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.” And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.

(Matthew 25:44-46, NRSV)

So if you read this, and I’ve offended you, I apologize. I’m deeply sorry.

And if that’s not you—if I haven’t managed to offend you yet—thank God. Maybe you can learn something from my crap, because God knows we need a little grace here.


I thought I’d make some cold-brewed coffee. It’s all the rage, right?

Let’s just say that you won’t be hearing about the results here.

What is resonating now…

Some things I’m reading that make me say ‘yes’:

From Richard Beck:

Edging Toward Enchantment: From Deconstruction to Reconstruction

…but you can’t go back. I often tell my students that there is a threshold of doubt, that once you start asking certain sorts of questions there is no going back. When it comes to faith there is a class of questions that, once you get to them, just don’t have any answers. When you reach these questions you’ll live with them for the rest of your life…

Something has to give. If you want to maintain a hold on faith the season of deconstruction has to be followed by a season of reconstruction. But a lot of doubting and disenchanted Christians never make the decision–and it is a decision–to commence with the work of reconstruction…

Edging back toward enchantment is practicing faith. Not practicing as faith. But just what I said: practicing faith.

And from Hugh Hollowell:

Why I am a Christian Humanist:

…if there is a God, either that God is way more loving and accepting than I am, or that God can give my spot in eternity to someone else. Because while I do not get to decide what God is like, I do get to decide what sort of God I deem worthy of worship. And if that God isn’t more loving than me, more generous than me, more open than me, more accepting than me, then that God isn’t worth my time or my devotion.

And also from Hugh: today’s thoughts on “Bonds and Betrayal“.

Easter faithfulness

So… may I share a secret?

I don’t know what to do with Easter.

Here’s the thing… I was scientist once upon a time. I still process the world that way. Yes, I may have come out as an ‘N’ the last time I took a Myers-Briggs test. Doesn’t matter. I still have a lot of ‘S’ buried inside. I analyze and test.

Everything. All the time.

And even when I act as an ‘N’ (which may or may not be a lot of the time now), I still have the ‘S’ part of me lurking nearby. And here’s the problem: Continue reading “Easter faithfulness”

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