Archive for July, 2016


Friday, July 15th, 2016

Our prayers go out to those families suffering following the Bastille Day attack in Nice France.

Overwhelming heartache yet again.

Evil does exist.  There is a darkness in the world.  There are dark places of our nature that strive towards cruelty.

And there is the opposite as well.  There is love and compassion.  There is a light in the world.  There are the better angels of our nature that strive towards kindness.  It is the message Christ lived.

Days like today are for simple messages….

One evening an old Cherokee told his grandson about a great battle that goes on inside people.

He said, “My son, the battle ins between wolves inside us all.  One is evil – it is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, violence and lies.

The other is good – it is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith.

The grandson thought about it for a minute then asked his grandfather: “Which wolf wins?”

The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”

The Painful Need to Respond to Violence

Friday, July 8th, 2016

We face an increasingly urgent and painful need to respond to violence.

Over the past few weeks…

  1. The largest mass shooting in American history in Orlando
  2. One of the largest single terrorist events in Iraq with over 200 killed in one bombing
  3. Serious concerns around the use of lethal force by police connected to race, the latest in Minnesota.
  4. 5 police killed in Dallas in an ambush style attack last night.
Our hearts break for all the above.
These events … tragic. Conversations around them … polarizing.  And the issue of violence needs faced in meaningful ways beyond just a simple wish that the problems go away.
The Christian response is both as promising as it is uncomfortable, as outrageous as it is hopeful.
Such a response clearly calls on us to “love our enemies.”  Such a response clearly calls on us to do the work of repentance, not casting the problem ‘over there’ but doing the work we can do to bring healing, work that starts with ourselves and the communities we find ourselves in.  Such a response calls us simply to love even in the face of darkness.
That is not a love bereft of accountability.  It is judicious and wise. It is a posture towards the world and its brokenness, a brokenness we witness in ourselves and others.  As such it is far from pain free.  Far from easy or safe.
It becomes then a vocational love, vocational as in a calling.  A calling that we not only should but must care about others in tangible ways because a world where expanding cycles of violence proceed unchecked is too awful to contemplate.