Author Archives: Allen

About Allen

Child of God, husband, father of two brilliant daughters, pastor and recent dmin graduate at George Fox University near Portland OR. My spiritual home is in the North American Lutheran Church, where I am currently between positions and upgrading my landscaping and home repair skills. "diakonia" (pronounced "dee-ak-on-ee'-ah") is a word found in the Greek New Testament used to describe (variously) either a specific kind to help any people in need, or a more general serving at table or the distribution of financial resources. In Acts 6, Stephen and others are chosen to serve the early Christian community there in Jerusalem, and the Church has had a "deaconate" in one form or another ever since. I've given my blog this title as a reminder that our faith is lived out where our faith and our service intersect.

Why Does God Allow Suffering?

A Word of Introduction I’m going to explore a theme in this space this month, the theme of “Faith Questions.” This is an intentional title. As people of faith, we will always have a faith question (or two!) we would … Continue reading

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Be Holy! Be Perfect!

As I was growing up, my mother had a number of pithy parental pronouncements that have stuck with me as an adult and as a parent. For instance, even today watching a freight train go by causes me to hear my … Continue reading

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Transitions: New Beginnings

Four weeks ago when we launched this series on change and transition I told you a bit of my story of moving from Fresno to San Bruno. It was a journey marked by both grief and excitement, as the journey … Continue reading

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The Neutral Zone: Life in the Meantime

We’re in the middle of a four-week series on Transitions. Last week, we looked at how to navigate the many changes we face, by keeping the ending in mind. Next week, we’ll finish up as we explore the new beginnings … Continue reading

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Transitions: Beginning with the End in Mind

Change can be a messy, complicated, difficult business. It’s been said, in fact, that the only person who likes change is a baby with a wet diaper. Change is hard because it requires that we step out of what’s familiar, … Continue reading

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Thriving in the Midst of Change

Moving from Illinois to California In June, 1988 everything changed for me. I was born and raised outside of Chicago, and I went to college and graduate school in Minnesota. But in June of 1988 I crammed all my earthly … Continue reading

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Who Are We? Whose Are We?

I can remember when I was young; I was frequently known as “Rob and Ginny’s son.” I can remember liking that most of the time. Aside from a brief season of teen-aged rebellion, I didn’t mind being known as their … Continue reading

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Where’s Waldo? Where’s Jesus

Where’s Waldo? Have you ever asked, “Where’s Waldo?” It’s a fun children’s puzzle game in which you try to find the Waldo figure somewhere in the middle of a picture. What makes finding Waldo a challenge? He’s usually buried in a … Continue reading

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Happy New Year!

Every fall, I go a little crazy. Just a little, mind you. We have a big, beautiful tree in our front yard that provides wonderful shade to the west side of our house. Throughout the year I rake up the … Continue reading

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A Blue Christmas

Joy and Pain The little boy toddle-ran across the family room after spotting his favorite blankie in the corner. Just before he got there, though, he tripped and fell hard. Usually one to catch himself with his hands, this time the 16 month old … Continue reading

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