Joe Kay is the associate minister at Nexus United Church of Christ, Butler County, Ohio. He also writes a weekly blog at https://joekay617.wordpress.com. His email address is listed on the blog, in case you care to contact him directly.
Posts By This Author
Adults Have a Responsibility to Educate Against Hate
Let's ask ourselves: Are we adults doing the best we can to teach young people what they need to know? What daily example are we setting for them in how we act and which leaders we endorse?
The Story of the Magi Is an Invitation. Will We Show Up?
The Magi finally appeared in nativity scenes over the weekend. Soon, if not already, they’ll be packed and stored away until next year’s Epiphany, which is a shame. These late arrivers are some of the most provocative, prophetic, and polarizing figures in the Christmas story, and we need to learn their lessons and carry them forward.
Mary's Defiant 'Let It Be'
The Jesus story begins with a young woman who also hears many critical voices around her. Mary lives in a culture that tells women they’re more property than persons. Galilee is considered the armpit of her society. Her religion portrays God as mostly a distant and disinterested deity.
Our Work Isn’t Done When Election Day Is Over
Vote today. Choose the candidates you think represent the best chance to bring God’s values of love, inclusion, justice, healing, and compassion into our world.
Death Cannot Separate Us From Love
Creation is all one thing, like a giant blanket. There are many threads on the blanket, all woven tightly together. When someone dies, they move from one thread to an adjacent one, but they’re still wrapped snugly around us, and not just in some metaphorical way.
Are Your Words Prophetic or Poisonous?
We’ve gotten yet another reminder of the power of words in the past few days. A man immersed in racist words killed black people in a Kentucky grocery store. A man immersed in fearful words sent bombs to people labeled as threats. A man immersed in anti-Semitic words killed Jewish people in their synagogue.
You Still Have the Power to Change the World. Use It
Do you feel powerless to challenge and change the deeply entrenched privilege that was on display last week? Don’t give into that feeling. You have the power to change the world. Look at how it’s changing already.
Thinking We Are Powerless Is Abandoning Faith
Jewish wisdom reminds us that we can’t be daunted by the world’s grief, but instead we are required to respond to it by acting justly, loving mercy, and walking humbly. We’re not obligated to complete the work of transformation, but we’re never free to abandon it, either.
The Courage to Challenge Caesar
Courage is an indispensable part of love, faith, and relationship. They exist only to the extent that we have the courage to take a risk and try to live them. Courage is the foundation of faith. Jesus often encourages his followers to live bravely because the kingdom of God grows only to the extent that we have the courage to enact it.
How Faith and Science Work Together
It’s a magical experience watching fireflies rise from the ground at dusk and blink their way high into the trees, performing their light show against the night sky. When I learned the science behind how the bugs make their light — a process called bioluminescence — it didn’t make them any less magical to me. Rather, my new insights made me appreciate them more.
- 1 of 14