A Prayer for Palm/Passion Sunday

Prayers of the People (a prayer offered at Northminster Presbyterian Church, Indianapolis on March 24, 2024 - Palm/Passion Sunday) We have shouted our Hosannas and lauded you as the victor. We have waved our palm branches before you, the One who humbly entered the city on the back of the foal of a donkey. We joined the throngs in song and celebration. We were certain that you would pave the way for us to the seat of power and that position would in turn make us powerful. So we follow you into the heart of every city. And if we are honest, we want to be seen, to have influence. We want access to the decision makers and the powerbrokers  because we followed you. But Lord, you show us another way. You help us to see what true power looks like; power given away, power in submission, power in kneeling, power in weakness, power in dying to the ways the masses' desire power and access. Teach us your ways, O Christ. You emptied yourself. In your humanity, through your humility, you gave us

The Point (a poem)

“What’s the point of it all?!” She shouted into the wind thinking no one was listening. “To love and to be loved,” echoed the gentle reply. “That is everything, and that is all.” -bshivers

Pardon Me

(a poem and a prayer) Perhaps the one who most needs to hear “I forgive you” tumble from your lips is you. Begin there. Be at peace. -bshivers

Sermons - Signs and Symbols: Faith

Signs and Symbols: Faith/Anchor This is the fourth sermon in a Lenten Sermon series titled "Signs and Symbols of Faith" at Northminster Presbyterian Church in Indianapolis, Indiana. This one focuses on Faith as an Anchor. It was preached on Sunday, March 10, 2024. The text of the sermon can also be found below. Second Lesson : Ephesians 2:1-10 You were dead through the trespasses and sins in which you once lived, following the course of this world, following the ruler of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work among those who are disobedient. All of us once lived among them in the passions of our flesh, following the desires of flesh and senses, and we were by nature children of wrath, like everyone else. But God, who is rich in mercy, out of the great love with which (God) loved us even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with (Christ) and seated us with him in the heavenly p

You Have Purpose (a poem)

You have purpose. It isn’t for the machine to use you up, to drain you dry, to cast you aside. No. Your worth can’t be measured by production, by output, by impact, or by the way you “move the needle” for someone else’s gain. You are here. You are you. And that is everything. In fact, it may be all you need to know. -bshivers Feb 25, 2024

Sermon - Signs and Symbols: Names

Signs and Symbols: Names This is the second sermon in a Lenten Sermon series titled "Signs and Symbols of Faith" at Northminster Presbyterian Church in Indianapolis, Indiana. This one focuses on Names. It was preached on Sunday, February 25, 2024. The text of the sermon can also be found below. Third Lesson: Genesis 17:1-8, 15-20 (p. 13) When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to Abram, and said to him, ‘I am God of the mountains; God of the high places; God Almighty; walk before me, and be blameless. And I will make my covenant between me and you, and will make you exceedingly numerous.’ Then Abram fell on his face; and God said to him, ‘As for me, this is my covenant with you: You shall be the ancestor of a multitude of nations. No longer shall your name be Abram, but your name shall be Abraham; for I have made you the ancestor of a multitude of nations. I will make you exceedingly fruitful; and I will make nations of you, and kings shall come from you. I wi

February Poems - 2024

February 2024 Poems and writings from February 2024. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Your voice is important, but you don’t have to listen to its negativity when it speaks poorly of you. -bshivers Feb 05, 2024 -------------------- As you gaze back across the landscape of where you have been, the shadowy places, the ones bathed in sunshine, the stormy seasons, and the lush landscapes, give yourself the time and the space to celebrate this moment and how far you’ve come. You arrived here by navigating there. You made it. And here you are. -bshivers Feb 09, 2024 -------------------- One thing . . . kindness. That is all. Kindness to yourself. Kindness to others. Kindness to creation. Kindness to all things. It doesn’t require understanding. It requires intention. It requires attention. It changes the world. It changes you. One thing . . . kindness. That is all. - bshivers Feb 10, 2024 -------------------- Ashes in the Shape of a Heart (a po