A Weirder Kind of Winter.......

The calendar says its winter. We know from years past that December, January and February are always 'winter months'. Yet, while we have a few colder days in a row, it sure hasn't felt like a "normal" winter. However, talking about the weather and the unusualness of this year is always interesting and pretty much non-controversial because who, besides kids, wants a cold, snowy, blustery winter anyway? Reflecting on this weird winter and how unpredictable it has been caused me to compare it to so many other things that happen in our lives that are... 'unpredictable'. How often we wish for an orderly and consistently predictable world where good things happen to good people, bad things happen

Reflections on Love

Beloved, let us love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love. God's love was revealed among us in this way: God sent his only Son into the world so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the atoning sacrifice for our sins. Beloved, since God loved us so much, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God lives in us, and his love is perfected in us. -1 John 4:7-12 (NRSV) Today is the day! Lovers and friends around the nation will be expressing their love for one another t

Love is in the air!

Love is in the air! Although Valentine's Day is n ot recognized as a religious holiday, the arrival of February 14 next week serves as a reminder about the importance of demonstrating Love in the Christian community and beyond. Valentine's Day means something different to everyone, but the way we celebrate the day takes on far less significance than the way we as a Christian community treat others during the entire 365-day calendar. So if we look beyond the festive heart-adorned cards, boxes of chocolates, and perhaps the cute teddy bears, we can see that Valentine's Day is a celebration of communal love for each other - or more specifically, a reflection of God's unconditional love for us

On confession, trust, and community

J ust this week, a member of the church and I met in my office. As our conversation was wrapping up, the member said in jest, "I have a confession to make...." then I joked about my office turning into a confessional, we laughed. Of course, as part of the Reformed Tradition, in the Presbyterian Church (USA) we don't see the need for a confessional, or intermediaries between us and God. We believe we have direct access to God; that God hears our prayers and when we confess our shortcomings to God, it is God's grace that enters in and we are forgiven. But I digress, later that evening, I began to think about confession, how it can make us feel vulnerable, but also how verbally confessing what

© 2016 by First Presbyterian Church of Valparaiso

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