Monday, February 18, 2013

Creation and Destruction

A quality of human nature is that we will often assign some moral value to things we see in the natural world. For instance, watching the old Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom, as a child, I got a taste for the “good” and “bad” side of nature. We would see lion's tenderly caring for their cubs, then see the same lions stalking and catching a beautiful gazelle, making a meal out it's carcass. I don't remember the hosts emphasizing the moral qualities, but it was my own reaction to what I was watching.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Musings on the New Year

The New Year is upon us! "Or, is it?" as Ryan, the 14 year old in my family, will often respond to my occasional declarations. He has a way of calling into question things that I may take for granted with his simple comment, “Or, is it?”

Monday, September 5, 2011

On Listening

"Listening entails vulnerability. Listening requires a willingness, even a longing, to understand another."

Krista Tippett on Listening

In this 2 minute segment Krista discusses the importance and value of listening. She goes so far as saying that "listening is a core spiritual value." What I know is that there are times that I am present with someone and am able to be in that listening posture and something happens that was unexpected. The other, who is being heard, has some insight or expresses something in a new way. A young man who is filled with anger and fear who is being listened to has his anger run it's course and is able to name the fear that lies behind it. And I am impacted with an emotion of compassion the rises up from some place deep inside as I genuinely see the other with all his or her humanity. Listening, the vulnerable willingness to understand the other, seems to be a lost discipline as we shout to be heard. Where do you see that this art of listening might have real impact in your life or in our society?

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Looking out the window to the back yard, we were amazed one afternoon to see several deer feeding on our plants. It was quite marvelous to watch them and to watch as they looked at us and then casually continued to graze. Even without the deer, it is wonderful to sit and look towards the woods, listen to the birds and other critters, and just enjoy being. And then there are times when "just being" doesn't seem quite enough. It is also important to be doing.

With that in mind, I've been wrestling with how I want to use my "social media." Am I interested in just being, in having a place for personal expressions, a personal journal that I post for the world? Or do I want to be more purposeful about focusing on some area of interest and/or expertise. Presently, I have accounts active with Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, Picasa and Blogger, and probably a few more. FB seems to be more about "friends" and casual connections. I also use it for information, with pages related to religion, politics, technology, music, and such. LinkedIn is more professionally focused and I am still seeking to understand how it works and how it might be a useful tool. Twitter . . . what can I say about Twitter? I will often use it for links to news, information and inspiration. And my blogs . . . I actually have three of them. One where I have been posting my sermons, another for reflections on pictures that I have taken or found along the way, and the original blog (this one) I have used for general essays on a variety of topics . . . no real focus besides what may be on my mind. What I am considering is to redesign this blog to make it more focused, more purposed. Some potential areas of interest include Spirituality, Process Theology, Not For Profit Organizations, Use of technology from the view of a non-tech professional, Perhaps blending the use of technology with Spirituality and not for profits . . . . So, what would be of interest to you?

Saturday, July 16, 2011

The Loving Persistence of Bamboo

My neighbor has a rather large clump of bamboo next to the fence that separates our yards. Have you ever seen what a bamboo shoot can do? It's a pretty strong wood. As it grows slowly and deliberately, it is able to force off planks of wood from the fence. Imagine that. You put up the best fence you can to protect yourself, or to hide behind, and this little shoot of bamboo works persistently and patiently until an opening is broken in the fence. 

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Cracker Barrel on Vacation

It has been "tradition" to meet up with family on our way to family vacation. This year we made the stop on our own. Everyone is getting breakfast but me. Hey, it's 1:30 already.