Passion Sunday Petitions

Lifting our voices and turning toward God, let us pray for the church, the earth, and all who are in need.

A time of silence.

Lord of compassion, as we the people of your family, the church, conclude our Lenten journey with the walk through Jerusalem to the cross, help us to understand that Jesus’ pain and […]

Ash Wednesday Petitions

Creator God,  we who stand before you are dust,    and to dust we shall return. But you have breathed into our lips your Holy Breath, so we are also … yours. Help us this Lent to come alive to your Spirit within us. Break down the walls around our souls with which we shut out […]

The Animals Teach Us Advent Expectation

‘Tis the season for expectation. Pregnant waiting. Yearning flavored with confidence. Confidence born of experience.

Advent has always been a favorite time for me. Of course, as a child, it all led up to that moment when we drove home from Christmas Eve pageant, past the colored lights on the homes and along the runways of […]

Lenten Devotions Project

Lent is a time of renewal of faith. This year, 2016, the pastors and members of three Lutheran congregations in DeKalb and Sycamore, Illinois, joined together to produce a devotional booklet for the season. The them is “In the Breaking of the Bread,” inspired by the powerful story of Jesus, making himself known to discouraged […]

More "Us" and Less World in Prayers

Of course, we all know it is a travesty for prayers and sermons to chant on about this and that abstraction. We heap up metaphors but cannot, for the life of us, speak in an apposite way or about practical truths. Saved by the blood of the cross? We explain it using ten more abstractions, and in […]

Weather Calls for Glass-Half-Full Thinking

 

 

They say some people are “glass half full” people and others are “glass half empty.” I’m more inclined to think as Martin Luther of old who said we are all simultaneously saints and sinners. I know I have the capacity at any given time to get the joy out of a dismal day or mine the dismal out […]

Prayerfully Gathering with Spot

February 2, 2012

                As an apprentice sheepdog, Spot has had a tumultuous work history. With the help of the insights from three of the very best sheepdog trainers in the world, Bobby Dalziel, Aled Owen and Gordon Watt, I have understood that I taught him well to bite sheep. I trained him on sheep that […]

First Blessing of the Animals Goes Well

On the afternoon of September 25 Heatherhope Farm hosted its first Blessing of the Animals—an event we hope to host annually.

We purposely did not advertise this event too widely so that we could keep the numbers small and feel our way into the best possible way of doing things. A dozen people showed up, bringing […]

Praying on Independence Day Weekend

Today is Independence Day.

Yesterday, in our Lutheran church service, we prayed for the nation. We thanked God for our freedoms. We prayed for humility and for a nation that serves God’s will. All good. We prayed hard and long for those who have preserved our nation’s freedom and prosperity–those in the armed forces.

But it seemed […]

Surviving The Blizzard of 2011 (With God's Help)

God protects us in storms and blizzards through the help of neighbors and government public servants. Thanks be to […]