Treasure Valley Prays

Reimagining Church Together

We are ELCA leaders and pastors from the Treasure Valley and Northwest Intermountain Synod.
Together, we are reimagining and revisiting what it is to be church together with daily devotions.

oboe

Oboe Lessons

Nearly five years ago, I started oboe lessons. This was something I wanted to do since I was in elementary school. When the time came in fifth grade to start learning a band or orchestral instrument, I really wanted to play something with flashy, silver keys and that had a cool instrument case. Instead, I

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dog waiting at window

Wait!

“Those who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.” (Isaiah 40:31) Recall the childhood game of “Hide and Seek.” I expect many of us have memories of how we played that simple game.

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birthday candles

Birthday Reflections

As I write this, I’m celebrating my 29th birthday, enjoying donuts and a latte on my couch. Last year, I celebrated with 25 of my friends, playing games together and all munching on a giant kitchen-island-turned-charcuterie board. COVID-19 has changed so many things, and it has been a year of challenges and struggles, currently feeling

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Doing Faith

In fact, (St. Paul) dares to say (in Galatians 5:6), nothing else matters except faith expressing itself in love. Brian McLaren, “Faith After Doubt” Every day I walk a three to four-mile route through my neighborhood. It’s part prayer time and part working through the things that are on my plate to deal with (I

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two wolves

Choosing Calm

Trinity is committed to the principles of “year-round stewardship”. At our January meeting, the Stewardship team selected monthly themes for 2021. Some months fell into place quite easily. March would be Stewardship of Our Building, with the annual pre-Easter church Spring Cleaning/Work Day. May would be Stewardship Benefiting People Around the World, coinciding with our

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conspiring

Conspire with Others!

We have heard a lot about “conspiracy” lately.  What comes to you mind when we talk about it?  Often we think about “cover-ups”, scandalous dealings”, “treachery” or some other skullduggerous mayhem, most often by groups who have less than honorable intentions or purposes.  Think about them:  Watergate; 9/11; the moon landing; Prince Diana’s death; JFK’s

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campers

The Best Time of the Year

Yes, I know that Christmas is over, but for me … this time of the year is among the most exciting and hopeful in my work in ministry. Outdoor Ministry sites across our country are praying, discerning, recruiting, interviewing, and hiring our summer staff teams. Those 18 to 26ish year olds willing to get excited

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working together

Sanctuary…

Being quarantine buddies and spending time at home with Tigress (my cat) I was able to observe her migration around my apartment throughout the day from sunny spot to sunny spot as the sun shifted its location through the day. And as the seasons changed these spots where the sun came in changed and so

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carrying a woman in wheelchair

Holy Roofs and Strange Sights

Jesus Heals a Paralytic One day, while he was teaching, Pharisees and teachers of the law were sitting nearby (they had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem); and the power of the Lord was with him to heal. Just then some men came, carrying a paralyzed man on a bed.

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mother holding baby

Seasons

Obviously, we are now in the throes of winter even though it’s a warm January at the moment. Winter is my least favorite season even though it sometimes provides great beauty to the eye. I dislike its unpredictability, and as I’ve aged, I just don’t like being cold! But dressing in soft layers helps and

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young woman greeting older woman

Blessings in Disguise

“But Esau ran to meet him, and embraced him, and fell on his neck and kissed him, and they wept.” (Genesis 33:4) Well this was unexpected. Two brothers who, from the womb, had wrestled with one another – for parental love – for position – for favor – for blessing. For decades, their relationship was

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bread and wine

Simple Serving

I am thinking about my Grandma today. And I am thinking about Communion. I miss Communion in our churches, all of us coming together at the Lord’s Table for the Holy Supper with our hands and hearts open to receive. I miss the regular connecting with Jesus, in/with the bread and the wine, and feeling

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outcasts

A Star Word Worthy of 2021

Did you happen to get a star word this year on Epiphany? This is the second year I’ve had a star word. My word for 2020 was “pray” which made a lot of sense, even before the pandemic and other cataclysmic events of last year unfolded. Although we couldn’t pass out star words in church

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comparison chart

Where Do You Come From?

When I was in seminary, I remember one conversation I had with a friend who had enrolled in the PhD program. I asked what he was pursuing, and he replied that he was going to explore the field of comparative religions. To be honest, at that time, I thought it was a trendy discipline more

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hands forming a heart

Living in Community is Hard Work

“Peace is not when everyone agrees. It is when we can respect our disagreements and still play in the sandbox together.” Unknown Tweet My neighborhood loves fireworks. The 4th of July fireworks start several days before the 4th, and last until several days after the 4th. The 4th of July in 2020 was especially noisy

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bible and plant at desk

Lenten Presence

Usually, Lent is my favorite season of the church calendar. I enjoy the weight of it. It’s a time where we embrace the sweeping grandeur

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river in March

Arrival of March

When I was growing up as a member of St. Matthew Lutheran Church in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin (“Tosa” to those in the know), I found the

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ice on trees

Seasons of Growth

Everything visible, without exception, is the outpouring of God. Fr. Richard Rohr, “The Universal Christ” This year, more than most, I feel closer to nature

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man holding an open Bible

Consider the Psalms

Lent is an appropriate time for reflection and self examination and there is no better place to ground our thinking than with the Psalms. This

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girl with head down on bench

Nothing Left to Give.

We are quickly closing in on a year since the world as we knew it changed out from under us due to a global pandemic.

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packing boxes

The Graceful Exit

Even though it’s been a month since I announced my retirement, the reality of leaving my pastoral call and ending my professional career hasn’t quite

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