In my view, the gospel writer, John writes in a manner that reflects the concept of “thin places.”  Thin places means a place where God is present in a deep and meaningful way.  This means they could be anywhere. But they can also mean special spaces where heaven and earth meet – or at least have a flimsy boundary that allows for the divine and human to go back and forth.  For John, the prologue is like a thin place where heaven and earth meet in Jesus (1:14-18).  Jesus, is the divine-human messenger who is presented as the Logos (Word) and Light who reveals God as Father.  In the first four verses of John 1, the reader is swept into a cosmic stage where he or she reads about Jesus, the Word before any word was spoken and the Co-creator of the Universe (1:3-4). This is Jesus who was before time and creation began. This is Jesus who is not from our planet and dimension. But because of a powerful force called LOVE (1:18; 3:16) came to our planet to reveal who God is – the God who he calls Father.  John begins his story about Jesus by telling the reader/audience that the person I am about to introduce to you is no ordinary being but someone who is going to change your life if you believe in him. (Another example of “thin places” encounters in the Bible are Moses meeting God in the burning bush (Exodus 3) and Jesus transfigured on the mountain. John alludes to it in John 1:14 and the Synoptic Gospels report with more detail (Matthew 17:1-8; Mark 9:2-8; and Luke 9:28-36).

Jesus, the Logos made human, who was the Word/Message and the Messenger who showed up and pitched his tent among humans not just to save them but to inspire them to live empowered by the Light, who shines in the midst of darkness.  It will be helpful to the 21st century reader to know that John’s reference to “the Jews,” does not mean all Jewish people.  “The Jews” in John’s Gospel are the Jewish religious leaders and those who rejected Jesus as God’s Son.  John’s Gospel must not be used to incite anti-Jewish sentiments. John is making a differentiation between the Jews who believed and those who did not believe (cf. John 8:31-32).  John’s Gospel included a promise of eternal life for whoever (Jews and non-Jews) believed in God’s Son (John 3:16) because of God’s love.

  1. I open my eyes from slumber and see the sunbeams softly fill the room with light. I breathe deeply, aware that once again, I am alive, reborn and renewed by you, O Loving Creator who watched over me while I slept last night.
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Let me not forget this quiet moments of gratitude and awe in your holy presence. Let me go through this day with eyes wide open, ready to be in awe of the beauty and goodness in me and around me today. Let me be in awe of what goes unnoticed, a leaf, a fallen branch, a bud waiting to flower...and by your grace, in these moments, let me feel your presence, take me by the hand. In the name of Yeshua, who calmed the storm and fed the hungry multitude. Amen.

It’s February 1, 2021. I haven’t been sharing my poetry, prayers and prose here in my blog for awhile. It has been a difficult November, December and January for me because of my husband’s hospitalizations. But I haven’t stopped writing using pen and paper. The act of writing has become a prayer. In my lowest moments, it helped to keep me afloat. Today I decided to come back to this online space and share some of what I have written in the past few months and hope it will bring some joy to you, my dear Reader.

Someone once encouraged me to find my voice. By voice I think the person meant who I am and how do I sound that is distinctively me. I didn’t really think about voice in that way. Yes, I love to talk, sing and listen to myself talk (ask my husband!). But I haven’t really spent time in self-reflection and listen more intentionally to who I am, especially as a writer. Today I gained more clarity about my voice, especially as a writer. The way I came to this recognition was in the midst of listening to a presentation of an author in the Writing For Your Life Conference. This was an online conference in November 2020. I was seated in our dining room viewing the presentation on my laptop. I had an epiphany: God has given me a joyful, “don’t-take-yourself-so-seriously,” earthy, “dance-in-the-rain person” voice, who sounds like a “faith-seeking- understanding” kind of woman-pastor academic willing to learn how to speak the languages beyond the confines of academia, exploring the many worlds that brim with wisdom and resisting the urge to be stuck in stale, overused words swarming online.

Our Good and Gracious God,

In this season of waiting, I pray that you will wait with me…

…in hope

…in peace

…with joy

and love.

I humbly pray that your holy, comforting presence keep watch with me

and my beloved who lays broken, waiting to be made whole.

Like Zechariah, may I embrace the silence of not knowing, with faith.

With Elizabeth, help me to have the courage to live through this season of waiting.

With Mary, lead me to a place in my heart that dares to sing with joy

in the midst of unanswered

questions.

In all these longings and pleas, may your Holy Spirit empower me and all I love

to be bold in claiming your gift of salvation, who came to us first as a tiny, fragile

baby, cradled in the hay of our humanity.

In the precious name of Yeshua. Emmanuel. Amen.