What A Team

It was Dixie's idea to take a pic of us all here at Malmo on Easter Sunday.

But the team does clean up pretty well. :)


(Me, Lauralea, Dixie, Marc)

Photo by Delora.


On resurrection day, not just Jesus came back to life.

It was magical outside yesterday morning.
As I left the house to walk to my office at 8:30, it was overcast outside, but the first thing you noticed was how warm it felt. It was +7C out there.

Perfectly overcast with a low sky, surprisingly warm for a March morning, and still, without a whisper of a breeze.

As I said, perfect.

And I was alone in the office, everyone was away for the day. So it was still inside too.

I had room to be still in my spirit. There were emails to answer, I had some good conversations on the phone. But mostly there was room for me to recuperate. I needed yesterday.

I walked and prayed through the yard and the cemetery, and managed to get a lot of work done. It was good.

I realized that this past weekend with its deep rooted tensions for the church, was a much bigger deal than I was initially aware. Yes it was Easter and I was distracted by that. But there were also some things going on behind behind the scenes. Spiritual things. Struggles. Tensions. There were old patterns being broken, and difficult history being dealt with well.

I needed the stillness of yesterday to consider those things. To heal up a bit, but also to look back and see what was at work. God was showing me some insights and offering me hope. What was grace was that the things that needed to be broken for us, were broken, and the seeds that were planted for a good direction down the road, were planted all on Easter weekend. A weekend of resurrection, a weekend of life, a Day of power released into the world.

Yeah, I'd say that this past week has been our toughest week here in this place. But I think it may also have been our best, in terms of a future here. This place in the field may have just turned a significant corner, and its best days may lay ahead of her.

And I guess I needed some peace and stillness to see that.

Still much work to be done and so we are back at it. Praying and preaching and walking along side those who are willing of my presence. Just as it always is and always has been for pastors.

May you know peace and love this day too. :)



P.S. Oh and you wonder about the title?
Not just Jesus comes back to life on Easter Sunday, but it seems others do to, including churches. Check this out, from the bible.

Matthew 27
50 And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit.
51 At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook, the rocks split 52 and the tombs broke open. The bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life. 53 They came out of the tombs after Jesus’ resurrection and went into the holy city and appeared to many people.


Post Easter stuff

Easter Sunday.
After a great week of prayer, and a moving Holy Week.
After the intimate communion of Maundy Thursday, and the fellowship with another sister church on Good Friday.
Easter Sunday morning is great.
But the loneliest time of the year, is Easter Sunday afternoon.

The people care and are friendly, and go off to live their lives.
The little girls Skype with us a bit.
Kids call.
But dang its so lonely.

Doesn't help that so much time has been for work lately.
This week was also my yearly review and it was fairly affirming, but there were a few thoughts that I can't yet process.

A couple of funerals to help with and serve at.
Some people I don't have answers for, God-wise.
And it seems some big miscommunications that will need addressing early this week.
Herself has been hurting by expectations that can't be reached, and friendship has been rejected.

Its not about rest, well, not just about rest.
Its a collection of things.
So we try hard to distract ourselves through the day. Until we can find balance again.

And this is normal. At least these days.

Easter is the most wonderful time of the year, Jesus wise.
It can just be the loneliest time of the year, church leadership wise.

That's why Easter Sunday afternoons are just difficult.
And that ends my public pity party :)

Carry on.



Triumphal Entry?

Tomorrow we gather to worship Christ and to remember his willingness to be vulnerable and weak. He rode into town, down through the valley on a Donkey, a colt. That wasn't really victorious. A servant or a slave might ride a colt. A victor would ride a horse.

This happened in a real place and time. And was recorded for us to read.

Luke 19:28-40  (NIV)
After Jesus had said this, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem.  As he approached Bethphage and Bethany at the hill called the Mount of Olives, he sent two of his disciples, saying to them,  “Go to the village ahead of you, and as you enter it, you will find a colt tied there, which no one has ever ridden. Untie it and bring it here.  If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you untying it?’ say, ‘The Lord needs it.’”

Those who were sent ahead went and found it just as he had told them.  As they were untying the colt, its owners asked them, “Why are you untying the colt?”

They replied, “The Lord needs it.”

They brought it to Jesus, threw their cloaks on the colt and put Jesus on it.  As he went along, people spread their cloaks on the road.

When he came near the place where the road goes down the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen:

“Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!”
“Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!”
Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples!”

“I tell you,” he replied, “if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.”



Here is the hill called the Mount of Olives, I was standing on the city of Jerusalem side when I took this photo.

On that day he rode down that hill, the people praising God.



A cry for YHWH


On this night when the darkness crushes in, he is there. 
He is here.