Your Blog Steward

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Omaha, Nebraska, United States
I am more and more convinced that most congregations die from a staggering lack of imagination. Let's change that. Let's imagine a creative future with God and each other together. Drop me a line on email or leave a comment if you have thoughts on God, Jesus, congregations, the church or whatever.... I look forward to our conversations.

Monday, January 6, 2014

It's a new dawn, it's a new day, and I'm feeling good

You should play this song while reading this blog...that way if the blog is disappointing, at least you get a little Nina Simone. 

The new year rolled in, and it is cold up here on the prairie. Even on the southern part of the prairie where I live, we have a bit of nip in the air. Oh well...

It occurred to me I have about 25 Christmas celebrations left before I die. (Just an estimate. Maybe more, maybe less.) Kind of weird to think about. I'm not concerned about that number (at least I don't think I am), but the last 25 years have gone by pretty fast, and if the next 25 go by...

For example, 25 years ago I got married. I can remember that day like it was yesterday. Here we were

 I miss that hat.

Now, here we are 
No hat.

I don't fear my death much, but I will miss living. I like living. I like going to my church and seeing what God is up to in people's lives. I like going out to eat (and, looking closely at those two pictures, you can see I am not lying on that one!), I like getting out in nature, I like listening to music (someday I'm going to make a Spotify channel of all the music I've linked on my blog. I bet I've got over 50 links to songs, if not more.) I like talking...I like telling stories.

There are also things over the last 25 years I won't miss. I don't want to have to deal with cancer again. (Mine was a particularly minor occurrence, but as my doctor said, "it will still kill you if we ignore it.") I would like to have some people around who are no longer with us anymore. (This guy, for example,
 and others who didn't get as famous but were important to my life.)

I have faith in God not because I am afraid of the future, but rather because I want to be a part of the future. I don't believe in God to be a better person, to have a blessed life or anything like that. I believe in God because I want to keep living even though I am going to be dead.

I've officiated at over 300 funerals in my ministry. Nowadays I end all my funeral sermons with one line: "Jesus won't stop you from dying, but he frees you to live forever." As we go into the new dawn, the new day, well? That makes me feel good.

May your tables be full and your conversations be true.

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