No Marriage in Heaven? Isn’t that a Downgrade?

Yes, Jesus taught that marriage is an institution for the Earth. At one point, Jesus told some religious leaders that were trying to trap him with a riddle that “in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven.” (Matthew 22:29–30) Something seems wrong with this picture. We […]

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Jesus was born… so what?

Jesus was born… so what? So was I. I’m not dissing Christmas. The mystery of creator becoming creation, of the Word becoming flesh, is filled with the profound message of God’s amazing love for us. But being born and living is something we all do. Resurrection, now that’s a different story! Paul wrote to the […]

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Envy & Greed, a poem

For a message on envy, I shortened and rewrote a poem by Victor Hugo called “Envy & Avarice.” (“Recasting,” I call it) I thought perhaps you might enjoy it. Envy & Greed by Victor HugoRecast by John Rallison Envy and Greed, twin sisters wandered seekingAny soul that might be open to their reekingIn sullen, sulky […]

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Billions of great things will happen today. Loved ones sharing life together. People creating wonderful works of every kind of craft and art. Simple acts of kindness between relatives, friends and strangers. If you read the news at the end of the day, you will hear about several bad things that happened today. Don’t let […]

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Don’t Cross Streams Alone

Last summer my family vacationed in the mountains in northern Georgia. I really like to hike and so decided to take a day hike all by myself. It was wonderful, peaceful and enriching for my soul. Then I came to a stream. It wasn’t a big stream — just a little thing I could cross […]

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When It’s Time to Get to Work

A couple of days ago, I wrote about how God’s Sabbath instruction had freed me to really relax on Sunday afternoon instead of worry about all the things on my todo list (read it here). Last Monday I experienced the other side of that coin. I work from home. I wasn’t feeling very good. I […]

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Reading Sherlock Holmes in Faith

To me, one of the most amazing things in the Bible has always been the command to take a Sabbath (to the LORD). The Israelites were commanded by God to not work on one day per week. Exodus 34:21 (ESV): “Six days you shall work, but on the seventh day you shall rest. In plowing […]

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What? Lutheran pastor apologizes for participating in Newtown, CT worship service following the Sandy Hook tragedy?

There was a brouhaha in the media last week that involved the LCMS. Some have commented to me about it. Some have asked me how this could even be an issue. Here is the situation: After the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, a community service of mourning was organized through the local interfaith clergy group. […]

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Values: Growing toward peace by clarifying values

Tomorrow is Transfiguration Sunday… a mountaintop experience! Unfortunately, we don’t live on the mountaintop. And while mountaintop experiences can be motivating and initiate positive change in our lives, humans just are not built to change in a weekend without something truly extraordinary happening (like a near death experience). We have to come down off the […]

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