Monday, December 27, 2021

Luke: A story of family

In Luke's account, Jesus is born into an ever-expanding family into which we are all invited. Read here or listen here.

Sunday, December 12, 2021

Mary: Prophetic, intelligent, unafraid

Mary is not a passive receptacle who is lucky enough to be carrying baby Jesus, but an intelligent woman who debates with an angel then assents to God’s call; a holy poet who bears God’s love in her womb, and in her words, and in her song.

Read here or listen here.

Sunday, December 5, 2021

Where God's word comes

Once upon a time, long, long ago, I lived in Washington, DC. We went to a church which was once Harry Truman’s, then Jimmy Carter’s; and while we were there the Clintons came a couple times. Members included presidential advisors, scientists, and journalists; officers in the military and CIA staff; senior bureaucrats and retired diplomats; professors, stockbrokers, and a governor of the Federal Reserve. A lot of power was concentrated at that church, and there were some incredibly committed and godly people ...

Read here or listen here.

Sunday, November 28, 2021

A tender shoot

So it’s Advent: a paradoxical time-slip in which we look forward to the coming of the one who was born, and lived, and died, and was raised, and lives among us now. It’s a time of anticipating more than ever God’s kingdom come. It’s a time of hopeful expectation of a world turned rightside up, a world where love and justice reign, and vulnerable people are raised up, and the arrogant are cast down. And so it’s also a time of pain ...

Read here or listen here.

Sunday, November 21, 2021

Revelation at Armageddon

Military violence never ends, but Jesus’ way leads to true and lasting peace. An insight received one Remembrance Day, while standing at Armageddon. 

Read here or listen here.

Sunday, November 7, 2021

Ruth: Extending the protections of the law to everyone

The story of Ruth undermines the push for religious purity by extending the protections of the law, and the lineage of King David, to a person who was traditionally despised. 

Read here or listen here.

Sunday, October 24, 2021

Bartimaeus | Rejected by the worshipping community, commended for his faith

He was slumped outside the city gates: because he wasn’t allowed inside anymore. He used to be there. But for his blindness or diffability or autism or trauma or gayness or questions or outspokenness or doubt or some other issue, he was criticized, then judged, then driven away, then erased. He was ordered not to mingle with the inside folk: and they were warned. Hanging out with him would taint them, might even lead to them being thrown out, too: so they carefully avoided him; they never returned his calls ...

Read here or listen here.

Sunday, October 17, 2021

Job | Responsibility, awe and wonder

All of us have big questions about human suffering: our own, and that which we see around us. And twenty months into a pandemic, with other griefs and losses mounting, with the prolonged physical distance from family and friends, and with climate catastrophe unfolding all around, these questions feel more urgent, more desperate, than ever.

Read here, or listen here.

Sunday, October 10, 2021

The real #FirstWorldProblems

Many of us assume that wealth is a blessing and a privilege, but Jesus says otherwise. A reflection on one of his most ignored teachings (which, if taken seriously, would pretty much resolve the climate crisis and heal the world). Read here, or listen to an earlier version here.

Sunday, September 26, 2021

Esther, empire and the hiddenness of God

sther shows that when insecure fools are in charge, even the most disempowered person may trigger a radical policy reversal. Read here or listen here.

Sunday, September 19, 2021

In a climate emergency, Jeremiah shows us how to lament

According to Jeremiah 12, injustice leads to land degradation and species loss. In an era of anthropogenic climate change, these words have new resonance and show us how to lament. Read here or listen here.

Sunday, September 12, 2021

Biblical wisdom, cultural knowledge, and healing

Biblical wisdom leads to understanding the particularities of place and the interconnectedness of all things, and is a source of hope for the healing of the earth. Read here, or listen here.

Sunday, September 5, 2021

The bitch slaps back

Bitch. It’s a vicious taunt. Every time I hear it, I’m left enraged, gutted, and gasping, which is exactly what the taunter wants. It’s meant to silence: and mostly, it works. It tells me that the speaker doesn’t see me as fully human. There seems no point in continuing the relationship: so I shut my mouth, and move away ...

Read here or listen  here.

Monday, August 23, 2021

Better a dinner of greens ...

I hate lockdown with a passion. And yet, there have been gifts. A reflection on 'steak and trouble' vs gardening, prayer and slow living, digging deep into the book of Proverbs. Read here, or listen here.

Sunday, August 15, 2021

For the life of the world

An enfleshed God unites us with the community of all creation and points us towards urgent climate action.

Read here or listen here.

Sunday, August 8, 2021

With Christ as our centre and source, we too become bread

Do you feed on success, or achievement, or excellence? How about winning, or seeing your team or country win? Do you feed on other people’s approval or praise or pity or love? Do you feed on wealth and power, or being followed on social media? What about the dopamine hit of other people’s ‘likes’? Do you feed on beauty? Do you feed on titbits of gossip, or righteous anger or outrage? Do you need to win every argument? Do you feed on being needed? Do you feed on your wounds? What do you feed on?

Read here, or listen here.

Sunday, August 1, 2021

The body of scarred tenderness

The sacred body of Christ is a body of scarred tenderness, aching with love for the world. 

Read here, or listen here.

Sunday, July 25, 2021

Five loaves, two fishes, and a pocketful prayers

Here we are in lockdown again, and life is feeling small. We don’t see enough people; we don’t share enough meals; we don’t get enough exercise; the walls are beginning to close in. Even when lockdown eases, we know from previous experience that it will take time and energy to reengage with the world. We’ll have new restrictions to navigate and new fears to manage. And after all these months of infrequent socialising, some of us will decide that it’s all too hard; we’ll choose to stay home.

Read here, or listen  here.

Sunday, July 18, 2021

Friends beyond any binary

Male + Female. Gay + Straight. Trans + Cis. Black + White. Neurodiverse + Neurotypical. Progressive + Conservative. Catholic + Protestant. Believer + Unbeliever. And I could go on with the binaries. We live in a world which loves to label people. Sometimes, labels can be incredibly helpful; they can provide a lens to understand ourselves and other people. But all too often, labels are used to make insiders and outsiders; they are used to condemn and exclude ...

Read here or listen here.

Monday, July 12, 2021

Joining the sacred dance

One of my happiest childhood memories were church barn dances. Once or twice a year on a Saturday night, we’d gather in the hall with a dance caller and bush band; and off we’d go with a do-se-do and twirl your partner! Adults, teens and children stepped and galloped, wove and spun, stumbling and laughing and moving down the line. Towering blokes swung little kids around; teenagers dominated the Nutbush; and the oldest folk clapped along from the sidelines. Some of us were wonderful dancers; most of us were not: but the dance held us all ...

Read here or listen here.

Sunday, July 4, 2021

No authority but Christ

Back when it was legal in Victoria, we had a couple of school families over for dinner. We lit a big fire in the fire pit; cooked up a storm; and gathered around our long table for a meal. We chatted and told stories, and gradually the talk turned to politics. At this point, one of my teenage daughters entered the conversation; and she set out her strong and considered opinion on the intersection of power and violence ...

Read here or listen here.

Sunday, June 27, 2021

Menstruation, miscarriage and the multitude robed in white

Like me, my mother was an ordained Baptist minister; but unlike me, she had endometriosis. Among other things, this meant that her menstrual periods were excruciatingly painful, and came upon her suddenly, in great floods. And so my childhood is studded with high stress memories of her period suddenly starting while we were out. There'd be an intake of breath, then a quick hissed exchange between my parents, then a frantic search for a public toilet before disaster struck ... 

Read here or listen here.

Sunday, June 20, 2021

Liturgy for the longest night

Tonight we gathered around a fire pit in the church carpark (current COVID restrictions put the kybosh on a bonfire in a local paddock); and we marked the winter solstice. You can read the liturgy here.

Sunday, June 13, 2021

The parable universe

The kingdom of God is like a Facebook post with zero 'likes' ... a man who leaves the workforce ... a woman who fears she's lost her marbles. Read here or listen here.

Sunday, June 6, 2021

The strongest one

When I first introduced the man who was to become my husband to my extended family, not one but two different people said to me, “Wow! We never thought you’d meet anyone, let alone a Collins Street lawyer.” Never mind that my husband’s office was on Queen Street; the message was clear. All my life I’d been told by family, church and society that no man wanted an outspoken wife ...

Read here, or listen here.

Sunday, May 23, 2021

Filled with new wine

One of my happy places is Little Creatures brewery in Geelong – or any big barnlike place which serves hot chips, a decent pint, and a place to hang out with family and friends ...

Read here or listen here.

Sunday, May 16, 2021

Sunday, May 9, 2021

Not your usual Mother's Day sermon

Some of us feel conflicted about our mothers, confused about love, and coerced by Mother’s Day. Thankfully, Jesus shows us what love is, and draws us into his family. 

Read here, or listen here.

Monday, May 3, 2021

Cut off from the church? Here's good news for you (and a challenge to the church)

The baptism of the Ethiopian eunuch points to a faith which is radically accepting and inclusive. Read  here or listen here.

Monday, April 26, 2021

Reading with the Risen Christ

The Bible is a dangerous book, full of contradictions and contested images of God. How, then, shall we read? Read here or listen here.

Sunday, March 28, 2021

Palm Sunday: The jester's joke

Palm Sunday is not so much a triumphal entry as a profound anticlimax, a raspberry, a fart. 

Read here, or listen here.

Monday, March 22, 2021

Sunday, March 14, 2021

No judgement, just paradise

In Christ we discover no judgement, only paradise: so why is condemnation such a feature of Christianity? A potted history. Read here, or listen to an earlier version here.

Sunday, March 7, 2021

Human violence, and the foolishness of the cross

To those reeling from another week in the patriarchy, the cross offers only foolishness: but in that foolishness we find healing and companionship. Read here or listen to an earlier version here.

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Change your thinking, claim your life

Repentance is about changing your mind and focus, and accepting the freedom which this new perspective brings. Read here, or listen here.

Sunday, February 14, 2021

The simple cure

We like to make things complicated, but the faith which heals is simple. A word for our graduates moving away to university. 

Read here, or listen to an earlier version here.

Sunday, February 7, 2021

Jesus-centred ministry: Spontaneous, behind-the-scenes, domestic

Just as the first recognized minister in Mark's gospel is an unnamed woman in a private home, most ministry today continues to be spontaneous, behind-the-scenes, domestic. 

Read here or listen here.


Sunday, January 31, 2021

Teachers like Jesus

Good teachers use what they know to show you a bigger, bolder, more expansive world. They help you find your right place in it, and they build you up in love. 

Read here, or listen here.

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