The Way of Love – Worship

Jesus on Palm Sunday

Within our Lenten devotional series, the theme for today is Worship. Today is Palm Sunday, the day that the public worshipped Jesus most avidly, giving him a “red carpet” welcome to the city of Jerusalem. They had heard about his miracles and, as a result, he had become a local celebrity. His good works had gone viral!

This is a blog post I wrote for Palm Sunday back in 2012:

Palm Sunday, Facebook and the 99%

A week before Passover, Jesus came to the town of Bethany to visit with Lazarus and his sisters, Mary and Martha (his BFFs). A crowd gathered at Simon’s house nearby, where Martha served dinner. Simon was a Pharisee (one of the 1%), but also a follower of Jesus since being cured of his leprosy. However, the crowd was more interested in the miracle that Jesus performed for Lazarus, i.e., raising him from the dead after Lazarus had died and been buried for four days.

Simon, Lazarus, Martha and Mary had a great party with friends from all over the surrounding area, including Jerusalem. After the party, the numerous guests used word of mouth (remember that? it’s a kind of human communication that pre-dates Facebook and Instagram) to tell all of their friends, who told all of their friends, that Jesus would be coming to Jerusalem for the Passover celebration. So, the next day, all of these “friends of friends” headed out to greet this great prophet and spiritual leader upon his entry to Jerusalem.

In the custom of the day, they paved the road with their cloaks and with the broad leaves of palm trees — kind of a red carpet (except not actually red). But this was something the 99% would normally do for the 1%, and that was not in line with Jesus’ way of life as a homeless, travelling preacher and material-free Son of God. So he rode in on a young donkey, to remain humble and to fulfill the prophecy of Zechariah:

Rejoice greatly, O Daughter of Zion!
Shout, daughter of Jerusalem!
See, your king comes to you,
righteous and having salvation,
gentle and riding on a donkey,
on a colt, the foal of a donkey.
– 15 Zech. 9:9

The Way of Love – Going

With coronavirus precautions in place, schools, libraries, museums, sports events, churches and synagogues are closed. People aren’t going anywhere, except to the grocery store to panic-buy all the toilet paper, cleaning supplies and shelf-stable food.

People may not be going to church, but churches are going to the people–via the internet. Recent articles in USA today, NY Times, Mercury News, CNN.com and others have reported numerous churches that are making worship available via live streaming on a variety of platforms. On Sunday, I plan to listen to Bishop Michael Curry’s sermon, which he will preach from the temporarily shuttered Washington National Cathedral.

So much is possible through online communication. Schools can teach classes. Students can get assignments and meet with study partners. Families, clubs and church groups can chat. Events can be live streamed and/or posted to a web site. Scatterbrained bloggers like me can post random musings on WordPress.com. Technology’s a beautiful thing!

If you would like to hear Bishop Curry preach at 11:15 EDT Sunday, March 15, go to the Washington National Cathedral website and click “Watch Live” under the March 15 event.

Lenten Series – Light

Photo: Stephen Hyatt. Source: thechurchesoftheworld.com

Our theme this week is light, or more accurately, light and darkness. In nature and in life, we have both. In our lives, we strive to keep the darkness at bay: love and loss, success and failure, wealth and poverty, friendship and loneliness, health and sickness. It is difficult to walk in the light when we experience obstacles that hurl us into the unknown.

I thought back to this prose poem I wrote in a 2015 blog post in memory of the slain members of Mother Emanuel AME Church. The horrific nature of the crime, the mass murder of a prayer group in a historic church, was so shocking that it broke the hearts of people across the nation, people who had never been to the church or known the victims, people thousands of miles away. We were hurled into the darkness. Yet those closest to the tragedy, the families of those whose lives were lost, carried the light. 

At the bond hearing for the shooter, the families were allowed to testify. They all expressed compassion for the young man. Alana Simmons, the granddaughter of one of the victims, spoke directly to the shooter, saying, “Although my grandfather and the other victims died at the hands of hate, everyone’s plea for your soul is proof that they lived in love. Hate won’t win.” (Source: NBCNews.com)

Carrying the Light
by Jan Brown

Why do churches have such lovely chandeliers? Perhaps…


To remind us there is something irresistibly beautiful, something higher and more permanent than our imperfect selves.


To remind us of the beauty that can shine from just one beacon, even in a world otherwise devoid of light.


To focus the still-bright light of our lost loved ones, so that we will not flounder in the dark.


To infuse love, the kind of love that shines on every living being, the kind of love that will never falter, never flicker out, never discriminate and never be darkened, no matter how deep the night.

The Way of Love – Worship

bible haiga

Today’s theme is worship. In his podcast, Bishop Michael Curry says that the act of worship helps us get out of ourselves and draw near to God. Worship reminds us it’s not all about us! We give thanks, we pray, and we go back out into the world changed.

I would add that one way we accomplish this change is through God’s word. For those among us who are homebound, Bible study can be the mainstay of worship. By doing this, we open ourselves up to seeing, hearing and feeling the word of God reflected in so many other aspects of life. And in this way, we begin to heal.

“He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.”  
–Psalms 147:3 

A Longer Story…

A friend of mine, Marva, requested some “longer” short stories, so I’m posting links to some of my longer flash fiction below. It actually exceeds the length usually allotted to flash fiction, but that should make Marva happy 🙂

A Whiff of Whiskey

The Adventures of Techno-Man

You can see more stories by clicking the “Flash Fiction” tab on the menu at the top of the computer screen.

Enjoy!