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hope the real self

Hope. Here.

I think it is hope that lies at our hearts and hope that finally brings us all here.

Hope that in spite of all the devastating evidence to the contrary, the ground we stand on is holy ground because Christ walked here and walks here still.

Hope that we are known, each one of us, by name, and that out of the burning moments of our lives he will call us by our names to the lives he would have us live and the selves he would have us become.

Hope that into the secret grief and pain and bewilderment of each of us and of our world he will come at last to heal and to save.

Frederick Buechner, Secrets in the Dark: A Life in Sermons, “Hope”

Hope that we can become who we were meant to be – is there a higher hope?

The God of the universe offers it – is any hope more sure?


Grace and peace to you…

dw

Photo by dw


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Next to Last

By faith we understand, if we are to understand it at all, that the madness and lostness we see all around us and within us are not the last truth about the world but only the next to the last truth.

Frederick Buechner, Secrets in the Dark: A Life in Sermons, “Faith”

To have faith is to remember and wait, and to wait in hope is to have what we hope for already begin to come true in us through our hoping.

Frederick Buechner, Secrets in the Dark: A Life in Sermons, “A Room Called Remember”

May the last truth shine through to whatever truth you are experiencing now.

May the hope you are waiting for be true in your life now.


Grace and peace to you…

dw

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attention the real self

A million things

…to run anything in this world…is like being lost in a forest of a million trees…and each tree is a thing to be done… A million trees. A million things. Until finally we have eyes for nothing else, and whatever we see turns into a thing.

So how am I to say it, gentlemen? When he came, I missed him.

— The Inkeeper

Frederick Buechner, Secrets in the Dark: A Life in Sermons, “The Birth”

I can’t begin to convey the magic of Frederick Buechner’s sermon “The Birth”. Sermon isn’t really the right word. It’s more like three interviews with people who witnessed the event: the Innkeeper, the Wise Men, and the Shepherds. The quote above is from the Innkeeper’s account, his witness, his confession – that’s what it is in the end – his confession. And it’s my confession, too; maybe it’s yours.


  • Are we lost in the forest of our concerns, so lost we can’t see the Light of the World around and among us?
  • He came to his own people and his own people…”missed” him.  Do we, like the innkeeper, have no room, no mental or emotional space, for Jesus to be born? Are we missing him? Are we aware we are missing him?
  • What can we do to not miss him? (Attention is the beginning of devotion.)
  • List out some of the ‘million things’ in your life. Note down times in your life when those things caused you to miss something important. Write down what Jesus means to you and what you might do to give him more space in your life.

I highly recommend Buechner’s book and that you read this particular sermon. What I have shared here doesn’t begin to do it justice.

Grace and peace to you…

dw

p.s. This is a refresh of a past post from early 2018