I made the mistake of going to Target last night. I needed toilet paper. Seriously. There were no carts. There were tons of people blocking aisles, as if they were the only people in the store. People were concerned with themselves and no one else. I’m not saying people weren’t friendly. Many of them were. But people were there on a mission. Black Friday kills me. First, because some people in this nation are so poor that they must save up to shop on the cheapest shopping day of the year. Second, because many of the people working on this Black Friday are themselves facingRead More →

Based on Genesis 4 You’ve probably heard this story before. An old grandfather said to his grandson, who came to him with anger at a friend who had done him an injustice, “Let me tell you a story…” “I, too, at times have felt a great hate for those that have taken so much, with no sorrow for what they do…It is as if there are two wolves inside me. One is good and does no harm. He lives in harmony with all around him, and does not take offense when no offense was intended. He will only fight when it is right to doRead More →

I know that I’ve talked about Kid President before here. If you haven’t looked him up, please, go home today and google Kid President, and watch his pep talk video. Kid President is a young African American kid who says brilliant things. Like, “We were made to be awesome.” In one Pep Talk, Kid President says: A poem: “Two road diverged in the woods…” “… and I took the road less traveled.” “AND IT HURT, MAN!” Really bad. ROCKS! THORNS! And GLASS! … NOT COOL ROBERT FROST. But what if there really were two paths? I want the one that leads to awesome.” He follows itRead More →

Things I’m grateful for, on this the 22nd of November, 2013. Grateful, for the first time in a long time, that I don’t have to make a list to be grateful. Friends around the world. My family.  And the love that we share. That my friend Sohini’s son, Ethan, asks when I’m coming home. That I have something like 47 amazing plants in my yard. That one of those plants is mother in law’s tongue–a plant that is a houseplant at home. That my floor tiles are pink, my favorite color. That I love every person I have met here at Gateway Community Church. EvenRead More →

This sermon is based on Ezekiel 37:1-14, Romans 8:22-27, with a little Acts 2:1-21 added in. But mostly, it’s based on Gerard Manley Hopkins’ poem, Nondum (which means “not yet”). Gerard Manley Hopkins was born in 1844 and died in 1889. He converted to Catholicism in his early 20’s, just after writing this poem that we’ve read this morning. Hopkins was artistic throughout his life, and apparently suffered from some melancholy most of his life, too. There are those who believe that he would have been diagnosed either with bi-polar disorder or with chronic depression had he been alive today. Hopkins studied at Oxford, whereRead More →