Friday, February 29, 2008

Leaping Friday Five

Over at RevGals, will smama and Songbird write ~

It's Leap Day!! Whether you're one of the special few who have a birthday only once every four years, or simply confused by the extra day on the calendar, everyone is welcome to join in and play our Leap Year Friday Five.

Tell us about a time you:

1. Leapt before looked
I tend to be a looker before leaper, particularly in the big things. The only things that come to mind here are impulse purchases, but even those tend to be cheap in the grand scheme of things.

2. Leapt to a conclusion
I think I too often jump to negative conclusions about my husband's motivations. He doesn't do things (or rather not do them) to bug me. He's just forgetful and cares about different things than me.

3. Took a Leap of Faith
Entering ordained ministry is/was a huge leap of faith for me, a full-blown introvert.

4. Took a literal Leap
Not so much a literal leaper either!

5. And finally, what might you be faced with leaping in the coming year?
Welcoming a new baby into our family. I'm grateful for the fact that pregnancy takes time, that it's not a sudden leap! Hopefully, I will also be leaping into a new call. It's time; it's past time. But it's bound to be a leap because so many other people's lives are impacted by such a decision.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Time to Join Facebook?

Yesterday I received a very excited email from my older sister, who (apparently) is on Facebook. I may have known this; I may not have. She was excited because a friend had found her and emailed her. This friend had lived with us for a year when she and my sister were high school seniors and I was a seventh grader. Said friend was from Finland. She became part of our family--in fact, she and I looked more like sisters than my sister and I do! We visited Finland and her family a year or so later. We kept in touch for many years, sending Christmas gifts and birthday cards. And then we lost touch. I think my mom still sends Christmas cards, but to no reply. Until yesterday, when my sister received an email from her. That doesn't sound nearly as exciting as it is...I'll have to write more about this friend soon (and come up with some fun pseudonyms for this blog...)!

For today, I've been making a list about whether or not to join Facebook. And I can't decide if these reasons are pros or cons!

~ I'm a pastor, a public figure. Do I want to be even MORE public? But at the same time, could I use this to connect with the youth of my congregation? Or even tech savvy adults?

~ My sister and some friends are on it. But I connect with most of them by email or other ways. Unless there are people on it who I don't know are on it.

~ My teenage stepdaughter is on it, I think. Would she 'friend' me? (I think that's how it goes.) Would that be good or bad?

~ It's another online way to suck away my time. (And another username and password to remember.)

~ Who knows who might find me? But now that we are able to be in touch with said friend, is there anyone else I want to reconnect with for whom this is the most likely way?

So, any readers out there, what do you think? For Facebook or against?

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Book Meme

I have been tagged for this meme by RevDrKate so here are the instructions and the play:

Pick up the nearest book of 123 pages or more: The book is Someday by Karen Kingsbury. I'm trying to make more time to read for fun and this was my reading last night. It's light Christian fiction, but full of beautiful words.

Find Page 123: flip, flip, flip......
Find the first 5 sentences: 'k here we go......1, 2, 3, 4, 5......
Post the next three sentences: "Ashley had found it in the box of letters in her parents' closet and thought it was for Brooke, the only firstborn they'd known up to that point. Instead, Ashley read it and realized it was directed toward a son, a brother she'd never known. The letter had changed everything, but until now it had never occurred to Ashley that the precious words from her mother were still tucked in their original envelope."

Tag five people....I tag:
and anyone else so inclined!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Baptism Friday Five

Friday Five: The Water and the Word

In this Sunday's gospel Nicodemus asks Jesus, "How can anyone be born after having grown old? Can one enter a second time into the mother's womb and be born?" Poor old Nicodemus! He was so confused about the whole "water and Spirit" business of baptism.

For today's five, tell us about your baptismal experiences.
When and where were you baptized? Do you remember it? Know any interesting tidbits?
I was baptized when I was 25 days old, at the same congregation in which my dad had been baptized and confirmed. (And later where we had his funeral and where I was ordained.) Pretty obviously, I do not remember it, but I do know stories! I didn't cry, which was amazing because I would scream whenever my mom would bathe me. I hated water. I also was supposed to wear the baptismal gown that my mom and sister had worn, but my sister (who was 5) threw a fit and decided that I needed to wear something that matched her favorite green dress. So, I wore a pale green gown.

What's the most unexpected thing you've ever witnessed at a baptism?
As a Lutheran pastor, it is my joy to preside at baptisms, usually of infants. Since I usually baptize infants, it's still somewhat unexpected when the infant clearly makes eye contact with me as I mark the oil cross on their forehead and say, "Child of God, you have been sealed by the Holy Spirit and marked with the cross of Christ forever." When this happens, I get goosebumps.

Does your congregation have any special traditions surrounding baptisms?
At our congregation, an older couple whose daughter died as a young woman always buys a rose for the child being baptized in memory of their daughter. Also, there is a group of ladies who make banners with the child's name and baptismal date for the child to keep.

Are you a godparent or baptismal sponsor? Have a story to tell?
I am a baptismal sponsor for my nephew. As much as I love the chance to preside at baptisms, it's also kind of fun to be on the other side.

Do you have a favorite baptismal song or hymn?
I'm not sure it's really a baptismal hymn, but John Ylvisaker's "I Was There to Hear Your Borning Cry" is one of my favorites!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day!

My husband and I had our "date" this morning at 8 a.m. We went together for the ultrasound of our baby. It was my first ultrasound and it was amazing!! It is unbelievable to see the face and hands and feet and even the baby's internal organs (heart and kidneys). Everything looks good and the right size for our expected due date. As if I didn't love this baby already (or my husband), but what a perfect and love-filled way to spend Valentine's Day!

Friday, February 08, 2008

Lenten Friday Five

Over at RevGals, these are the questions of the day:

1. Did you celebrate Mardi Gras and/or Ash Wednesday this week? How?
No. Mardi Gras isn't a personal tradition of mine even though I have participated in some events in the past. A foot of snow prevented us from holding our Ash Wednesday service. It was, however, wonderful to spend the whole day at home. I even made it a day off by doing very little. I think the most productive thing I did was take a shower. It was lovely.

2. What was your most memorable Mardi Gras/Ash Wednesday/Lent?
There's not one in particular that stands out. The last few years I lived at home, my home congregation had a Mardi Gras Pancake supper. I was the "princess," wearing an old prom dress, taking tickets, and handing out beads. My mom was often in charge, so it meant we were there from beginning to bitter end, making it a long night and a lot of work, but a fun time for our congregation.

3. Did you/your church/your family celebrate Lent as a child? If not, when and how did you discover it?
We always attended Ash Wednesday services and midweek worship services. We sometimes did more focused family devotions.

4. Are you more in the give-up camp, or the take-on camp, or somewhere in between?
Somewhere in between but closer to take-on. Last year, I took on the practice of listening to the Bible on CD whenever I drove in my car alone. It was lovely to have the Word of God surround me in the quietness even when I didn't focus directly on the specifics.

5. How do you plan to keep Lent this year?
I don't have plans this year. That sounds bad, but it's taking all my energy to be pregnant, love my family, and do all the things I need to at home and work. That's all I have and I believe God understands. Nourishing this little person inside me is all I can do this Lent.

Thursday, February 07, 2008


One of the things I've read about pregnancy is about a nesting instinct, the desire to make a home for the baby and family. To some extent I'm doing that. I keep looking at cribs and baby clothing and imagining what's to come.

But it looks like I'm really nesting! For Christmas, my mom gave me a cozy down blanket to curl up in while I sit on the couch. But it's shedding like crazy, so when I stand up, the area is covered with feathers.

I guess that will cover the nesting instinct for now!

Monday, February 04, 2008


It has been a rotten few days--two funerals (one for 85 year old man, one for 17 month old girl) plus their visitations, one high school lock in, one "beat cabin fever" party at church, normal weekend stuff, bad cold, and overdrawing our checking account. Today is my day off which I've managed to sleep most of away because I am completely and totally exhausted. But our house looks like crap--partly me I know, but how hard is it for a grown man and two teenagers to put their dishes in the sink and put the garbage in the garbage can? I just feel like curling up in a ball and crying...I was really praying for a snow day so husband could help with some of this house. How on earth am I going to work full time and take care of a baby when I can't even manage now?