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Journey With John Blog

  • July 29, 2018
    Journey with John Music has always touched my searching spirit.  Through gentle rhythms and moving melodies, words take on a different texture that minister to my soul.  I am especially drawn to the music of the Church where God’s message is given wings […]
  • July 22, 2018
    Journey with John I am so grateful to our trustees who take such good care of our beautiful building and grounds.  It is a huge responsibility that they tackle with grace and dedication, giving tremendous amounts of time and energy.  I offer a shout-out […]
  • July 15, 2018
    Journey with John In I Corinthians 13:4-7, Paul writes: “Love is patient, love is kind.  It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, […]
  • July 8, 2018
    Journey with John There is a marvelous story in Mark 2:1-11 (taken from “The Message).  “After a few days, Jesus returned to Capernaum, and word got around that he was back home.  A crowd jammed the entrance so no one could get in or out.  He was […]
  • July 1, 2018
    Journey with John If you were shipwrecked on some deserted island, what would you be sure you took with you?  Of course, there are a multitude of possible responses – adequate food and water, some good books to read, some sturdy shoes, a cell phone with […]
  • June 17, 2018
    Journey with John Frankly, I am mystified.  From where did the ugliness come?  It is heartbreaking to listen to reports of the base and degrading things people say and think about other human beings.  No “side” is free from blame.  When did we reach the […]
  • June 24, 2018
    Journey with John Life is a journey that leads us to walk unknown paths.  Each one has its blessings and joys that take us to new heights of growth and wonder.  I’m so grateful that one of the paths Federated Church chose to take was one that led to the […]
  • June 10, 2018
    Journey with John It’s been on my home “to do” list for some time.  Actually, it was a substitute for a project I had planned to do last Saturday.  It seemed like the right time had come (meaning I had no excuses!).  After mowing our grass, I got out the […]
  • June 3, 2018
    Journey with John What do you first notice when you meet someone?  Some people are drawn to what a person wears.  Clothes can tell you a lot about a person.  You have different expectations or at least different impressions, when you see a person in a […]
  • May 27, 2018
    Journey with John After yet another senseless bloodbath in one of our public schools, leaving ten beautiful souls lifeless and devoid of a future – we grieve.  We grieve for lost innocence and futures that will never be.  The wailing of the angels is […]
  • May 20, 2018
    Journey with John Pentecost is such a life changing event; it fills me with wonder at the mystery that is God.  God’s love was so great for the people that crucified God’s own child, God sent another part of God’s self to be a permanent Guide and […]
  • May 13, 2018
    Journey with John Trying to wade through the “ocean of schmaltz” in the Hallmark section of Payless, I was searching for an appropriate Mother’s Day card for my wife who is a superb Mom.  I came home empty handed.  (Sorry, Cherilyn!)  I grumbled for the […]
  • May 6, 2018
    Journey with John The nearer we got to our destination, the quieter the bus became.  Our guide, the epitome of joy and a spirited teacher about her beloved nation, grew tense and distant as we approached.  Her narrative lost its luster as she reported […]
  • April 29, 2018
    Journey with John The image is still so clear in my mind.  A large stone marker – a tombstone – greeted my entrance through the iron gate.  The epitaph was carved into the stone in eight languages, accenting its universal, all-inclusive message.  It was […]
  • April 22, 2018
    Journey with John A little boy was selling pencils door to door for a nickel each.  He greeted a woman at the door and began his sales pitch.  He said, “Ma’am, would you like to buy one or two pencils from me?  I’m selling these pencils at a nickel […]
  • April 15, 2018
    Journey with John I was in fifth grade when I discovered its wonder-working power.  We gathered in the gym for an assembly where our guests were from the high school!  The crowd grew quiet as the older students convened on the risers down front.  Out […]
  • April 8, 2018
    A Journey with John The palms have been waved.  The Alleluias sung.  The large crowds have come and gone.  The Easter victory has been proclaimed throughout the world once more.  We are a resurrection people!  And now comes the fun part – making our […]
  • March 20, 2018
    Journey with John Every now and then, go away, have a little relaxation, for when you come back to your work, your judgment will be surer.  –  Leonardo da Vinci Even in the 16th century, it was recognized the need to get away to refresh the soul a […]
  • March 10, 2018
    Journey with John God speaks to us in so many amazing ways.  I shouldn’t be surprised that the Almighty would choose to reveal a holy truth through a biology lesson.  I was at a spiritual retreat.  Susan Briehl, a Lutheran pastor, was our speaker.  She […]
  • March 5, 2018
    Journey with John The stories, where Jesus healed people of their unclean spirits, have always intrigued me.  I am especially drawn to Mark 5:6-9, where the man with the demon recognizes the power of Jesus and falls before him.  “When he saw Jesus from a […]
  • February 25, 2018
    “The one true freedom in life is to come to terms with death, and as early as possible, for death is an event that embraces all our lives. And the only way to have a good death is to lead a good life. Lead a good one, full of curiosity, generosity and […]
  • February 18, 2018
    There are many moments in worship that I love, but the ones that bring me the greatest joy are when our youngest children come to share in the service. There’s just this wonderful energy that fills the sanctuary. I loved the excitement last Sunday of […]
  • February 11, 2018
    Among my valuable experiences along life’s journey was being employed by McDonald’s as a fry cook back in the late 1970’s.  It didn’t pay much of anything – I think it was $2.85 an hour. I was in Seminary and was soon to be married. I don’t think I […]
  • February 4, 2018
    In in my office, next to my desk, rests a statue titled “The Circle of Unity.”  It was created from a single block of wood showing three people interlocked – holding each other in balance. It was made in the Congo. It speaks to my soul, never more so […]
  • January 28, 2018
    It’s one of the best sounds in the world – right up there with a good choral group singing Mozart or someone shouting “Who wants ice cream?”  You know, sweet sounds to tame the savage beast and satisfy the deepest need. I’m talking about children […]
  • January 21, 2018
    “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never harm me.” I remember chanting that little charmer as a kid, stopping only after the first time I was a receiver of hostile, ugly words. To say words can never harm me could only come from one […]
  • January 14, 2018
    It’s an easy discussion to fall into with anyone who has a similar history.  It begins with the question, “Do you remember…?”  That starts a rich exchange that retraces those events that have enhanced your life.  “Do you remember your first dance?”  That […]
  • January 7, 2018
    We all know industrious people who can take something old and in a few simple steps make it remarkably new again. I am married to one of those gifted people!  On New Year’s Day (a rare day off from her busy work schedule), Cherilyn decided it was time to […]
  • January 14, 2018
    It’s an easy discussion to fall into with anyone who has a similar history. It begins with the question, “Do you remember…?” That starts a rich exchange that retraces those events that have enhanced your life. “Do you remember your first dance?” That […]