Crossroads: Peace

Peace is a funny thing. We pray for peace in a world full of violence. We pray for peace in times of trouble. We pray for peace in times of stress. We pray for peace in times of worry. And at first glance, we think that peace means that our situation changes. The world puts down its weapons. Trouble ceases. Stress disappears.

Formations 12.15.2019: Sitting in Darkness

Jim McClellan of Marin, California, is co-founder of a logistics software company. In a recent article, he discusses how he and his family have coped with the frequent power outages his state has endured in the wake of this fall’s numerous wildfires.

Connections 12.15.2019: Orientation

Picture John the Baptist, leaning against a prison wall. For many months, he has worked tirelessly, pleading with people to repent and prepare for the One who is to come.

A View from the Pew: ‘Tis the Season for Missionary Speakers

Missionary speakers at church are as much a Christmas tradition as Christmas trees, Advent wreaths, and Nativity scenes.

Coming, a Prayer for Advent

Come to us, Lord Jesus,
in every purple-patterned life,
every wrap of loving arms
in shivering December.

Crossroads: My Hope is in the Lord

I am a worrier by nature. When things go wrong, I get anxious. When things have the possibility of going wrong, I get anxious then too. So it is comforting to know that the Lord who watches over us doesn’t sleep. God doesn’t get tired. God doesn’t get anxious.

Formations 12.08.2019: Happy Holidays

How many traditions can you name surrounding the birth of Jesus? Some of these traditions are purely secular; others are deeply religious.

Connections 12.08.2019: Privilege

Advent is a good time to consider our privilege and what we need to do about it. This week’s lesson text features John the Baptist.

Thanksgiving Supper

At 10:30 on Thanksgiving Day, I am standing in a long line waiting for a box of Thanksgiving. We are not in a restaurant, as you might expect, but in a nondescript building—a VFW hall, Rotary Club hall, or Jehovah’s Witness Kingdom Hall.

Flame: Advent Prayer Bags

Lately, I’ve seen a variety of lovely ideas online for helping children and families to get involved with the Advent season. Drawing on some of the ideas I’ve seen, I’ve come up with a little bag of items that will take children through some of the main Advent themes.

Crossroads: Thanksgiving

It can be easy to forget our blessings. During moments of pain, anger, or sadness, it can be easy to forget all the good things we have.

Connections 12.01.2019: Being Alert

This week we begin a unit called “Advent and Christmas Goals.” Our lesson text calls us to be ready for Jesus to come again.