It’s been a heck of a year.

At many times, I was afraid for the state of Christianity.

2016 was the year of shouting, and softer voices temporarily got drowned out. This was also the year of labels. The candidates had labels and so did Christians. The media spoke of “the Evangelicals” as synonymous with “the Christians”, which was simplistic and false.  It had its place in election reporting, but it was a form of shorthand that was deceptive, leading people to believe that there is only 1 kind of Christian and there is a checklist to be followed. Call me Pollyanna, but I think there is as much diversity in Christianity as there is in any other area, and I think that is a fantastic and necessary thing for actual unity to occur. I think that what we non- Evangelicals bring to the party is also valuable.

I have been a Christian my whole life, but not an Evangelical, because my personal belief it that religion and politics is a bad pairing. Politics is a tribal blood sport! It’s “our team” vs. “their team.” It, of necessity, relies on soundbites, shorthand, and over- simplification and generalization of issues and the categorization and labeling of people. I think we can all agree that we have had enough of that.

My first  Christmas wish  for Christianity it that we drop the labels and checklists! Stop the madnessJ It is what is in our hearts, that only God himself knows that is what matters. We can’t attribute intent to someone because of how they voted.

Allow me to use a little humor to make my point. Is God a Republican? Is he an Evangelical? Did he have a favorite in the election? Was he rooting for Hillary or Bernie? Or Russia?

Though a registered Republican, I have voted Democrat or Independent in the past 3 elections, because I don’t want people in Washington that I have never met telling me how to be a Christian. Am I still a good Christian if I really don’t like Congress or the President telling me how to live my life?

What if I believe in separation of church and state despite the fact that I’m a Christian?  Do I forfeit my faith card?

Yes, these scenarios are ridiculous.  Can we stop pretending that they aren’t?

There are as many shades and flavors of faith as there are people professing it. There is not only room for all of us, but all of us are needed to raise our voices during this Christmas season and be reminders of what we actually agree upon, and it is a lot, despite what we see on the news and our Twitter and Facebook feeds. So, my second Christmas wish is that we ,put those sources of division away for at least some of each day during the holidays and focus on what draws us together.

The following are the things that we agree upon: We believe in loving our neighbors as ourselves and at least attempting to see them with understanding. We believe in peace and compassion, good will toward men, assuming the best until proven otherwise. Each of us, not matter what our faith, believe it is sacred and not something to be exploited by anyone –ever. We believe in extending grace, because we have received it. We believe in opportunity and optimism.

We are still the most compassionate, generous, open minded and open hearted nation on earth. The labels don’t matter. We know who we are. And I think God’s still rooting for us.



(book excerpt) One Thing that is Always Sacred


What is it?

Every Thing.

Allow me to explain:

If God made you and I the way we are, with character defects that sometimes cause us to stumble and fall, does he hate those imperfect parts of us?

Does God hate anyone simply because they are imperfect and may do crazy or maybe even ” bad” things? Some are saying yes very loudly.

I say no- emphatically, undeniably, categorically no.


My spiritual growth, healing and maturity flow from my ability to see the context of each individual’s life and how it makes their walk and experience unique and even sacred. Without understanding the “why”, it is impossible to know the heart of a person and see them or God in them.

If God is infinite, then there must be an infinite number of ways to mirror him, and there must be an infinite number ways to find him, follow him and find one’s true path-  all unique, all sacred.

Without the key ingredient of ” why” I can only categorize people in pre- fab boxes, judge them and cast them out…

If God created us to be totally unique… then none of us is ugly, and our behavior can’t be judged as ugly until the full context is revealed

I am not saying there is no evil, there is.

But, if my character defects cause me to humbly hit my knees and ask God for help in overcoming them, are they something to be hated? Does God hate them? How could he? Does God hate people he made for being the way he made them? How could he?

Surely God knows I am going to screw up before I do. It may grieve him to see me stumble, but does he hate me for it? I can’t believe that. Then why should people hate what God does not? Aren’t mistakes and detours essential to spiritual growth?


How can we know or judge where someone is going if we do not care where he or she is coming from?



If wandering in the desert for decades led me to a God beyond my wildest dreams, a new me, and a life replete with miracles, then was that time in the desert, wrong or a mistake? Was it wasted time? Nope. Is it for anyone else to say? Nope. It was Sacred. The pain and fear I felt every day of that lengthy detour, led me face the fraudulent me in the mirror and the fraudulent God I had inherited and fire them both.