2012 In Review!

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.  THANK YOU FOR MAKING 2012 GREAT!

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 11,000 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 18 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Christmas is the end of the beautiful journey of Advent. May we celebrate the coming a Christ once more & continue to model his loving spirit.

Merry Christmas! Christ is born!

We Were Made For This… Advent 2012

A row of tea candlesAdvent has led us to this moment; we are expectantly waiting the coming of the Christ Child. Our hearts and souls are filled with hope, peace, love and joy. Advent sets us on a trajectory toward the moment when we will encounter Christ a new. May we continue this journey not only during the season of Advent, but for the rest of our lives. The story of Christmas can not be contained into four, one hour long church services. The message is greater than that.

Throughout our lives we seek something greater than ourselves.  We seek something that gives us completeness and wholeness.  The message of Advent is that there is something worth waiting for; not just during December but for the rest of our lives.  Darkness will be overcome, light will shine bright, hope will be restored, joy will fill our hearts, love will abound for all and peace will finally reign on Earth.

The Advent message is one that calls to wait and watch for the coming of Christ in our midst, for the coming of the Savior born to a unwed teenage mother 2000+ years ago.  Wrapped up in those bans of cloth was a promise of life a new.

May we remember the message of Advent and the call of Christ to remember and reflect the love of Christ.

The power of God is felt and known more deeply when we wait for the coming of Christ and the hope we have in his coming.   Darkness to light, chaos to peace, exclusivity to inclusivity, an outcast to the God bearer– All because of the indwelling of God; the movement of God, the incarnation in a baby born to a unwed teenage mother with zero status socially.

We were made for this… we were made for something greater than ourselves

“My soul magnifies the Lord My spirit rejoices in God my savior.”- Luke 1:46

In Christ,

Rev. Evan


(“A Row Of Tea Candles” available under the Creative Commons Attribution License 2.0 at http://www.flickr.com/photos/tschiae/8213244223/)

Pronunciation Is More Important Than You Think

Below is a video from a recent episode of “Wheel of Fortune.” In this clip, a contestant tries to solve the puzzle. The correct answer is “Seven Swans A-Swimming” but the constant says “swimmin” leaving off the “G.” “Wheel of Fortune” judges did not take the answer as correct. Thus the contestant forfeited her turn and the next player solved the puzzle correctly because she stated the “G.”

Because of this one little letter the contestant lost out on a few thousand dollars.

Fair? Unfair?

In Christ,

Rev. Evan

 


Advent Thoughts

Below is what I wrote for my church’s newsletter.


This Advent season we have been journeying toward the manger in Bethlehem as we re-enter the story of Christmas and hear it again with fresh ears. We join the angels in proclaiming the name of the Savior in the world, we rush with expectation with the Shepherds, we offer our own gifts of thanksgiving and praise with the Magi. It definitely is an exciting time in the life of the Church.

But we all know that, Advent can be one of the busiest times of the entire year.

Our calendars fill up with plans that are generally made well in advance or according to family tradition. Sometimes it feels that we are planning our lives away trying to coordinate the right amount of time with family and friends. On top of that there are lights to put up, trees to decorate, gifts to wrap (and unwrap) and miles to travel.

But in the midst of this busy season, we are called to wait, we are called to reflect, we are called to prepare for the coming of the Christ child. We all know the story for I imagine we have heard it since our youth and every Advent after. Encapsulated in the birth accounts of Matthew and Luke are words or great power and beauty, words that call us to wonder and remember.

However this Christmas for many people, it will be a time of mourning. This might be the first holiday without a special loved one. Holidays have a way of recalling to our minds the good times and the lasting memories that will sustain us until Christmas comes around again. We will recall their spirit and the way their presence will be missed. This is especially true for the families of the Newton, Connecticut tragedy. Our hearts and prayers go out to those families. In one senseless act, the families of those lost will never be the same again; the holidays will bear a new meaning this season.

As we live in a world marred with evil and hurt, may we remember the promise that is found with in the manager in Bethlehem.

May we remember that Christ tells us that “blessed are those who mourn for they will be comforted.”

May we join with the angels and say “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace among those whom he favors.” (Luke 2:14-15 NRSV)

Merry Christmas!

Rev. Evan M. Dolive

Newtown, CT

Newton, Connecticut.  Before today many of us had never heard of this little town.  But now, due to a senseless act this town is now on the front page of every major news site and newspaper.  In one senseless act, lives were ended, lives were cut short, peace was turned into chaos, stability turned into uncertainty.  In an instant the world of so many children and families were turned upside down.  It is a sad sad affair.

As I sit here, I type a sentence and then delete it, type a sentence and delete it… words can not express the sadness  the hurt, the pain and anguish that comes from a tragic event of this magnitude.

What are we to do?  Our hearts break and spirit cries out, but many of us are thousands of miles away…

I am reminded of a quote I heard once (not sure who or when):  “I am convinced more and more each day that we live in a world in desperate need of a Savior.”  In one act, the human condition showed its ugly head once more…

May we remember the words of Christ in Matthew 5:4

“Blessed are those are mourn, for they will be comforted.”

May it be so.

Below are some touching and thoughtful tweets I saw today


6 Objections of the Church from “They Like Jesus But Not The Church”

I am currently reading “They Like Jesus But Not The Church” by Dan Kimball.  It is an interesting book on how the church is seen by those in the “emerging generations.”  The author does not hold back in calling out followers of Christ on both sides of the theological spectrum. In the book he list six objections people have to the church (they are listed below)

What do you think about these six?  Would you add or take any way?


Objection #1: The church is an “organized religion” with a political agenda;
Objection #2: The church is judgmental and negative
Objection #3: The church is male dominated and oppresses females
Objection #4: The church is homophobic
Objection #5: The church feels Christianity is right and all other religions are wrong
Objection #6: The church is full of “fundamentalists” who take the Bible too literally.