A Truth for Apocalyptic Times: A Reflection on Luke 21.5-19

If you were hoping to come to today’s Gospel reading for words of hope and encouragement, you’ll likely go away disappointed, and maybe a little disturbed. For in today’s Gospel, Jesus talks about destruction, warfare, natural disasters, famine, plagues, and political persecution, in apocalyptic terms — Not exactly a cheering message in our time of … Continue reading A Truth for Apocalyptic Times: A Reflection on Luke 21.5-19

The God of Life: A Reflection on Luke 20.27-38

One of the common tropes in the Gospels is how different groups of people hostile to Jesus’ teaching would try to ensnare him in his words in order to discredit him, only to have Jesus escape the trap and carry the day. Sometimes, as for example with the ‘Render unto Caesar’ teaching (which directly precedes … Continue reading The God of Life: A Reflection on Luke 20.27-38

Whose Faith?: A Reflection on Habakkuk 1.1-4, 2.1-4

There’s an old saying that goes, “As long as there are exams, there will be prayer in public schools.” And another, “There are no atheists in the trenches.” While I don’t necessarily agree with the conclusions of these sayings, their shared premise does have a point. We tend to look for God, not out of … Continue reading Whose Faith?: A Reflection on Habakkuk 1.1-4, 2.1-4

The Pharisee and the Tax Collector: A Reflection on Luke 18.9-14

Self-righteousness is a funny form of sin: It is pretty much universally loathed, yet also pervasive, and it is among the easiest sins for us to spot in others, yet one of the hardest to spot in ourselves. This very problem, however, says something important about what self-righteousness actually is: an inversion of repentance so … Continue reading The Pharisee and the Tax Collector: A Reflection on Luke 18.9-14

Sound Advice: A Reflection on 2 Timothy 3:14-4:5

One of the most-quoted literary works of the twentieth-century is not a novel, a poem, or a play, but something that wasn’t supposed to be ‘literature’ at all. I'm talking about the collection of personal letters written by the poet Rainer Maria Rilke, published in 1929 as Letters to a Young Poet. In these letters, … Continue reading Sound Advice: A Reflection on 2 Timothy 3:14-4:5