Restoration Recommends: Silence

In Lent, we enter the wilderness with Jesus. There, we embrace our brokenness as Christ embraced his own suffering, emptying ourselves out so that as we encounter others, we might reflect Christ. Both in novel form (by Shusako Endo) and as a film adaptation (by Martin Scorsese), Silence is about entering the wilderness. It is Read the full article →

Sermon Bonus – Encountering Jesus:  Living Water in the Wilderness

    This week, we looked at Jesus’ encounter with the Samaritan woman at the well in John 4. It’s interesting that this woman has acquired a reputation for immorality and promiscuity. It’s even more interesting how easy that narrative is to believe once you decide that’s her story. She’s been married five times, she’s Read the full article →

Restoration Recommends: The Good of Giving Up

In my sermon this week, I spoke about a new introduction to Lent, written by an Anglican Pastor in Chicago by the name of Aaron Damiani.  I found this book to be an extremely helpful resource for anyone who is new to the tradition of Lent and anyone who wishes to revitalize their thinking about Read the full article →

Sermon Bonus 3.5.17 – Encountering Jesus: Into the Wilderness

In Matthew 4, Jesus faces three temptations to rely on his own strength to elude suffering and to seize power for his own. It’s a temptation that we face every day. We make choices every day to ensure that we won’t have to feel weak or inferior; we’ve figured out ways to keep ourselves satisfied Read the full article →

What Kind of Fast Does the Lord Choose?

Today is the first day of Lent and the beginning of a 40 day season of preparation to restore and renew us for the joy of the resurrection when we reach Easter on April 16. Anglicans follow three disciplines during the Lenten season: prayer, fasting, and giving to those in need. These three practices are Read the full article →

Lent with Kids

It feels like we just wrapped up Christmas, but Ash Wednesday is only 2 weeks away! In addition to preparing children for Ash Wednesday, and explaining the purpose behind Lent, here are a few ideas for how to incorporate Lent into daily life at home and weekly parish life. Life at Home: Pray. If you don’t pray as a family, Read the full article →

Trial and error when writing a Rule of Life

I can’t say exactly when over the past several years I first heard about creating a rule of life but I was instantly attracted to the idea. I am by nature a rule follower:  I stick to the speed limit, I carefully weigh and measure my ingredients when cooking, and I read the directions before Read the full article →

Sermon Bonus: 2.12.17 – Becoming Present to His Presence

On Sunday, we talked about how we need to develop the holy habits of the church in our daily lives.  This is easy to picture when we talk about being devoted to the Bible or to fellowship, but it gets a little murkier when we talk about sacraments.  Communion and Baptism are sort of the Read the full article →

We Welcome Refugees

Restoration is deeply committed to welcoming refugees. We say this because we believe that God has always called his people to welcome refugees. All of scripture puts the radical hospitality of God on display, from his command to the Israelites that “the foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself” Read the full article →

The Ties that Bind

TIE groups are starting at Restoration.  Hopefully that isn’t news to you—we’ve tried not to be subtle.  If you haven’t heard, TIE stands for Three Is Enough, and it’s our version of small discipleship groups. I’ve known probably every type of small group; I’ve been a part of plenty over the years.  But this month Read the full article →

Four Things We Learned During Our Advent Family Devotional

This past Advent season our family committed to doing the “Advent Guide for Families” devotional book that was created by Trevecca Okholm. I really enjoyed the time we spent each evening as a family walking through the story of Jesus’s birth.  I will admit that it was a learning experience for us, especially when it Read the full article →

Advent is for Love

During each week of Advent, Restoration Church has been focusing on a specific theme. In the sermons preached and the Tom Wright devotional, Advent for Everyone, we have both heard and read about waiting, repentance and healing. This week we are looking at the theme concerning love. Love is a word that is loosely thrown around Read the full article →

Restoration Recommends: Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Joy of Christmas

This time of year can be difficult for those of us who want to live out the true meaning of what Advent and Christmas is all about. I love that Restoration is reading the book by Tom Wright, Advent for Everyone. This is a wonderful devotion and it is certainly keeping me focused on Jesus. I Read the full article →

Repent:  The Big Turn

During Advent, we are reading Tom Wright’s devotional, Advent For Everyone.  This week the readings emphasize not only the nature of repentance, but its significance in this time especially. If you’ve heard a sermon or two on repentance, then you’ve likely heard that the word means “to turn around.”  This of course easily applies to Read the full article →

Restoration Recommends: The Season of the Nativity

When The Season of the Nativity: Confessions and Practices of an Advent, Christmas, & Epiphany Extremist by Sybil MacBeth arrived in the mail I was thrilled, 1) because it is a fabulous book full of lovely ideas for celebrating the season and 2) because I have been called an extremist (or Advent Grinch or Captain Read the full article →

Watch: It is always Advent

This week our sermon text and readings from the Advent for Everyone devotional have all been Jesus’ teachings about his second coming. These scripture passages may seem far from the familiar nativity narrative about angels and shepherds but they are a call for the Church to watch for the return of Jesus. This article about Read the full article →

Sermon Bonus 11.20.16 – “An Important Failure”

  In the sermon Sunday, I mentioned the poem by W.H. Auden called “Musee des Beaux Arts.”  In the poem, Auden talks about Pieter Bruegel’s painting, The Fall of Icarus.  In the painting, everyone is turning away from Icarus as he plunges into the sea.  To them, it simply wasn’t an “important failure.” When we Read the full article →

Reflecting God’s Welcome

Walker Percy is quoted as saying… “We love those who know the worst of us and don’t turn their faces away.”  Isn’t that a beautiful description of who God is and how he views us. Time and time again we read in scripture how God knows us: “But now thus says the Lord, he who Read the full article →

A Tale of Two Christmases

Last year I had a passing conversation with one of my neighbors on the afternoon of Christmas Eve. She said, “Well, we’ve got to go do Christmas so I can take the tree down.” I continued on my way to prepare for Restoration’s Christmas Eve service later that evening but I was truly puzzled by Read the full article →