Author Archives: Allen

About Allen

Child of God, husband, father of two brilliant daughters, pastor and recent dmin graduate at George Fox University near Portland OR. My spiritual home is in the North American Lutheran Church, where I am currently between positions and upgrading my landscaping and home repair skills. "diakonia" (pronounced "dee-ak-on-ee'-ah") is a word found in the Greek New Testament used to describe (variously) either a specific kind to help any people in need, or a more general serving at table or the distribution of financial resources. In Acts 6, Stephen and others are chosen to serve the early Christian community there in Jerusalem, and the Church has had a "deaconate" in one form or another ever since. I've given my blog this title as a reminder that our faith is lived out where our faith and our service intersect.

Listening for Advent’s Promises – Hope

This season before Christmas we’re focusing on the theme Listening for the Promise. Each week, we’ll explore different promises associated with Advent. Our readings this week speak of God’s promise of hope, and of what it means to live with … Continue reading

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Listening for Advent’s Promises – Jesus is Coming!

This season before Christmas we’re focusing on the theme Listening for the Promises. Each week, we’ll explore a different aspect of the promises God gives us surrounding the birth of Jesus. Our readings this week speak of a promise, and … Continue reading

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How Do We Live with Dying?

Do you have a “bucket list?” What’s on your bucket list? Country singer Tim McGraw sings about one such a list in his song, Live Like You Were Dying. It’s full of fun things like skydiving and bull riding and … Continue reading

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God of Refuge, God of Strength

Choosing a “Base” I enjoy watching my younger daughter, Amy, on the playground at the park or in our backyard. She loves to play chase and hide and go seek with her cousins or with new friends she makes at … Continue reading

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A Surprising Faith

When you’re a child, a wind up jack in the box can provide a marvelous surprise. Turn the crank around and around, and pretty soon the top pops open and good ole Jack jumps up. Giggles and laughter abound! Surprise!! … Continue reading

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Back from Sabbatical

I’m baaaaaaack! I spent the past four months on sabbatical finishing my Doctor of Ministry dissertation in the Leadership and Spiritual Formation program at George Fox Seminary. It was an exhausting, exhilarating, challenging, growthful experience that I enjoyed deeply – … Continue reading

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Our Response to the Gospel – Acts 2.22-41; John 8.48-59

When the Gospel message of God’s love revealed in Jesus Christ touches our hearts, it creates a response in us. The two arrows on the picture on the right represent this choice: one arrow going up toward God, the other … Continue reading

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Live Mission! – Acts 2.1-21

A pastor acquaintance from my online Bible study started a new church in the Denver area and, as so often happens, her church quickly became every other church’s little sister, getting all of their hand-me-downs. One year they received a … Continue reading

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Live Witness! – Acts 1.1-14; John 17.20-26

Would you expect that someone’s last words to you might be pretty important? Yeah, I would think so, too. I think of a family gathered at a loved one’s bedside, keeping vigil while their love one passes from this life … Continue reading

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Live Relationship! – Romans 12.4-18; John 14.23-39

In the Gospel lesson this week, Jesus is getting ready to say farewell to his followers. The disciples had been chosen and called, they had left everything behind to follow Jesus, and now Jesus is preparing them for his arrest, the trials, the beatings, the … Continue reading

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