Showing posts from October, 2014


A voice cries out: “In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain. Then the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all people shall see it together, for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.”  Isaiah 40 The other evening I was listening to an author talk about her recent book and she said one of the first tasks of writing a book is to find and listen carefully to the character's voice.  I was struck that such a task is not only for writers, but for all of us in life.  We need to find our voice; our authentic, unique, wonderful voice.  And once you find that voice, you begin to explore your range, just as a singer knows his/her range.  And once you find your range, you try to sing and share your voice with others in the best ways you can each day. Yet, I also wonder how many people feel l

Relationship and rules part 2

If the Ten Commandments are really about relationships rather than rules; if the Ten Commandments are actually an invitation to dialogue and discussion; if the Ten Commandments are about how we can connect with God, ourselves and others in concrete ways...well that WE have some work to do.  We have some work to do as we sort out how we can authentically live these ten ways to life. Last post I laid out the following understanding of the Ten Commandments: 1.  Put God at the center 2.  Don't try to confine God to the palm of your hand 3.  Don't use God for your own that lots of us struggle with today. 4.  Keep the Sabbath...or as Barbara Brown Taylor says, "One day, you need to be good for nothing."  Just be, rest in God and not in your accomplishments. 5.  Honor parents...or better yet, honor all elders and those who have wisdom to offer. 6.  Be careful with weapons and words, both can be used for violence that kills 7.  Honor rel

Relationships and rules

Often when we read the 10 Commandments, we conflate this top ten list with rules we need to unquestionably obey.  Etched in our mind is Charlton Heston coming down with his hair flowing... his beard flowing...his robe and words flowing saying, "I thus giveth thee tenth Commandmenths".  But when you read Exodus 20, God speaks.  God does not have Moses play secretary, God simply speaks and a relationship with God's people is formed and fashioned.   That is pretty much how every relationship is formed.  You talk...and talk...negotiate and re-negotiate.  The rules around relationships are bendy and flexible.  Which is a pretty good description of God's relationship with us, it is flexible.  I know this is not the normal interpretation of the Ten Commandments.  But throughout Scripture these ten guidelines for life that is true life, keep getting discussed...sometimes debated with others.  Rabbis and teachers would keep entering into dialogue with people as they