Saturday, August 16, 2008


I want to start this post with making it clear that I have been very blessed to grow up in the USA.

Like many I have been obsessed with watching the Olympics and it has caused a surge of patriotism to well-up within me. Growing up in the middle of the country, I was able to sing all the patriotic songs from the time I could talk...thanks mom :) So, as I was watch our athletes receive their gold medals and the National Anthem plays, I sing along (while my dog looks at me like I am crazy), but I sing. However, I have noticed that many of our athletes don't.

Last night I called my mom and told her I have figured out how to contribute to the Olympic effort. I will teach all of our athletes the words to the Star Spangled Banner. Then my mom replies, "I am sure they are just too full of emotion." To which I reply, "so are the athletes from all the other countries and they seem to sing along with their anthems." Then my mom says, "Well maybe they are like you and sister and refuse to sing the National Anthem because they are mad at the country." I took offense, I have been so proud of our athletes. I went off on my poor mother. I told her I have been singing and rooting for our Country because this is good clean competition, something that we can truly be proud of.

However, I didn't stop there, I kept going. The Olympic competition is how we show our sportsmanship to the world! I am proud of them and us, but I really hate the way George Bush represents us. Like yesterday when he told Russia to stop bullying their neighbors because this is the 21st Century. Can someone tell me what in the hell he has been doing for the last 8 years? I would call the whole Iraq debacle a huge case of bullying! And now Bush has the nerve to tell Russia not to and is offended with Russia doesn't follow Bush and "do as I say, not as I do?" This is the reason I cringe and shy away from the National Anthem and waving my flag all the time like I did as a kid!

Mom stopped me there as I took a breath and said "man you are on a roll." I guess I was and still am. It honestly hurts me that I can't be proud of my Country in ALL aspects of life. Somehow, the Olympics has showed me what I have lost when it comes to pride in my Country. Now, I just have to figure out ways in which I can reclaim the pride I have by somehow changing the course our Nation is on.

Sure there are the elections, but seriously, I don't know how a new administration will be able to turn things completely around. We as citizens have to do something, but what and how? I think people on both sides of the spectrum feel similar in this respect. The sense that no matter who is elected, it will be politics as usual. So, I just watch the Olympics, root for my country and pray that somehow God will intervene.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


In the morning I go for my 6th treatment of Tysabri. Tysabri is the medication that I currently use to moderate my MS. I am starting to feel the benefits of the medicine and it seems that my congregation and people in the community are starting to notice as well, which is a good thing.

However, on Thursday I got a letter in the mail about Tysabri. Apparently there have been 2 more cases of a rare brain infection associated with this medicine. I always knew this was a possibility because 3 people have died from this infection with Tysabri. But they thought they had fixed that. Apparently not though. I really am not that scared, but there is a bit of worry in the back of my mind. But then I remember how fleeting life is and I think the benefits of Tysabri out way the risks. At least it has helped my energy and walking. So, we'll see. If you feel like it, I would appreciate you prayers :)

Friday, August 8, 2008

Little Duty

I was moved to tears this evening by the story of the little boy who marched in leading the Chinese delegation. When the horrible earthquake hit 2 months ago 30 of his classmates died, but after he escaped he went back in to save those who could be saved. This little boy is 9 years old and when asked why he went back, he said I was a leader in my class room, they were my responsibility. From the mouths of babes! If only we adults could be as faithful as a child...sounds almost biblical doesn't it. And a little child shall lead them!

Lectionary and Turtles

I am unabashedly a lectionary preacher because it both challenges comforts me. However, the lectionary elves this week made it really hard! I have been preaching through the Jacob stories using the idea of family, but for some reason the powers that be skip the resolution of Jacob's story with Esau. Granted, Jacob already wrestled with God, blah, blah, blah...but really some human reconciliation would be nice.

So my choices are Joseph if I want to stay with the OT or the great story of Peter and Jesus walking on water! I guess my other choice would have been just to continue with the OT with no worries. But the problem is I want to preach everything! I am thinking that this is probably an issue of a relatively new preacher.

And now for a confession and a brief eulogy to a turtle. Last evening I was not paying attention and by the time I saw the big turtle near the middle of my lane, it was too late to veer around and he was gone. I feel really fact I began weeping. Poor turtle just trying to get out of the recently formed puddles and I ended his life. I know that my weeping was linked to deep issues and not all because of the turtle and because of that I would like to thank Mr. Turtle for giving me a reason to "breakdown" and cry.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Rough Week

Since I arrived at this, my first call, I have done my fair share of funerals. However, I have not known any of the people whose funerals I have performed. This past week everything changed. When I arrived a member of the congregation was diagnosed with cancer, and this past week she passed. As it happened another member of the congregation who hadn't lived here for ten years also passed, so I had a graveside service yesterday, worship and communion today and a funeral tomorrow.

It is a whole different experience burying someone that you know and have become close. I am currently just getting through it and will have time to process later. Any advice on how to process? CPE training is one thing, but real world application is different :) I would love some input from more seasoned pastors. Thanks!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Parades and things

So today was the town parade. There are times when I really love living in a small town and weekends like this are one of them. Sitting on the sidewalk this morning I wanted to start singing the Cheers theme song. Knowing everyone's name is nice...

Even though I do like it here much of the time and I really love the people, I really struggle with staying here because while everyone knows me and I know thier name, I really don't KNOW anyone here. It's hard to live in a bubble and not have anyone to hang out with that aren't under 18 and over 80.