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Showing posts from April 19, 2009

For Sleepy, Wandering Minds

I think if we are honest with ourselves, the main battleground in quiet, meditative prayer and Bible reading, is our wandering minds. It has been wonderful, several times a week to gather with a few others and prayerfully, meditatively read scripture. We gain wonderful insights and blessings from approaching this discipline communally. But it is in those moments of silence, when I should be pondering profound passages like, "But not so with you; rather the greatest among you must become like the youngest, and the leader like one who serves" (Luke 22:26), that my mind wanders to what I need to pick up at the store later, what's coming up class work-wise, or sometimes I'm on the brink of falling asleep. It is at those times that I feel a bit like one of those sleeply disciples Jesus scolded for not being able to stay awake while he prayed in Gethsemane.

Yes, I know God is gracious and merciful and knows my heart, but it is exasperating how difficult it can be to be full…

Shepherding God's Flock

In my Gospels class, each of us has been working with the same passage from one of the four gospels throughout the semester. For me, it was John 10:11-18, the Good Shepherd passage.

Along with a classmate we have looked at this passage from numerous perspectives: form criticism, text criticism, redaction criticism, Old Testament in the New Testament, etc. From our weeks of study, we each put together an integrative project. Mine is another blog, Shepherding God's Flock. Initially, it was just for the class and that was it, but at the prof's suggestion and my own enjoyment in putting it together, I've decided to keep it going. I invite you to join the discussion and let's see where it takes us.

Permission to Relax

As a seminarian from The New England Synod in Region 7, I had the opportunity to apply for a scholarship to this triennial WELCA retreat and won it. This was an excellent retreat on many levels. It came at a time when I desperately felt the need to get away and rest. I didn't even bring any homework with me!!

This is the only retreat I've ever been to, where we were told from the very beginning that it wasn't necessary to attend everything. Not only was there built in time to do as we wished, but we were encouraged to walk outside, take a nap, whatever we needed to do. That was different.

Worship and fellowship were wonderful at Mt. St. Alphonse in Esopus, NY. The retreat center overlooks the Hudson River. The picture at the right was the view from my room.

The keynote speaker, Sr. Anne Bryan Smollin, author, nun, counselor etc., was a hoot. She got her point across with wonderful humor. We were dying from laughter when she spoke. Other speakers and presenters were wonderful …