Gotta tend the earth if you want a rose

This Sunday, Feb. 21, we’ll meet at Karthaus’ at 4 pm. Our worship/discussion will be on Tokbox at approx. 5:30 pm. We hope you’ll join us! Read on to see what we’ll be discussing to prepare for the conversation, and if you can’t be with us on Sunday leave your thoughts and comments on the blog so we can include them. Here’s a taste:

Penance as guilt is just what our monkey minds want.  The part of our brain stem that focuses on survival and preservation of the status quo often gets its way by imposing anxiety and fear, and guilt just piles on to its agenda.  But repentance — the ultimate aim of “doing penance” — is about taking action. The word literally means to “turn around,” to “head in a new (right) direction.”  Guilt, though, feeds on our insecurities and need to blame and, left unchecked, leads us to despair.  It is the root of thinking that we’re not good enough, that we can’t do anything to solve a larger problem that causes the guilt, and so leads to inaction — the exact opposite of repentance. 

Read on for more reflections and discussion questions. (more…)

Written by Bob Fisher in: gatherings,lent,service,spirituality |

Imitating Christ’s humility

christhumilityTomorrow Kairos will gather at 4 pm at Barbette’s (Call or email Bob at 267-702-4262 for directions/info.)

Our focus will be “Imitating Christ’s humility,” drawing on Paul’s beautiful description of Jesus’ emptying himself for us, taking the form of a slave, in Philippians 2. We’ll look at how our response to Jesus’ kenosis (emptying) plays out on the global stage (as in aid to Haiti and Africa) and how we might express similar solidarity with the poor and marginalized.

Read on for more about the gathering.


Written by Bob Fisher in: gatherings,lent,spirituality |

Kairos Winter Retreat Feb. 28


Join Kairos Community for a day of connecting with the Source.

Where: Upper Tinicum Lutheran Church Parish House 1426 Bridgeton Hill Road, Upper Black Eddy (Lat/long for GPS 40.561731, -75.114597)

When: Sunday, February 28 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Chronos, not Kairos time). Please plan on arriving early so we can get our coffee*, etc.  We would like to start promptly at 9 a.m.

Who: Interested adults and teens. Feel free to invite others or bring a friend.  This is an adult event. No child care will be provided.

Leader: Pat Herbst has been a spiritual director for many years and formerly was a pastoral assistant and educator at Assumption B.V.M. parish in Colesville, outside Bethlehem. She’s excellent!

Cost: Asking for donation of $25 per person to cover costs.

For more information contact Bob via email.


Advent: sharing our blessings

blue candlesLast week we began our Advent journey by exploring the “good news” that Jesus came to proclaim, the prophecy of Isaiah that he brought to life in front of a hometown crowd:

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”

We saw that the people of Nazareth found Jesus’ “good news” – God’s favor for the poor, the blind, and the outsiders, not just for them – to be bad news. (Luke 4:14:30, http://bible.oremus.org/?ql=126423915)

We also started a benevolent project, using an Advent Giving Calendar that we distributed. This calendar asks us to look at what we have been blessed with and then respond with a small gift for those who are less fortunate. Together, we’re collecting the coins the calendar asks us to set aside, and after Christmas we will pool the resources and decide on a worthy cause to support.

You can download the calendar here: http://goodrichdesign.net/adventgivingcalendar.htm

Don’t worry if you didn’t start on the first day. Just jump in where you are. You can always catch up if you desire. Whatever you can do is a way to embody Christ’s message and “bring good news to the poor.”

Written by Bob Fisher in: advent,being church,gatherings,lent,service,spirituality |

Spirituality resources

A brief listing of some resources you might find helpful in exploring your spiritual life.

Prayer/Scripture podcast every M-F, guides you in reflecting on how a text fits with your life.

Sacred space
An online form of Daily Prayer

Missio Dei breviary
Another online Daily Prayer which offers traditional readings and prayers.

Online prayer labyrinth
Explore virtual prayer stations from the comfort of your computer.

Our daily readings discussion
Join us as we discuss the daily Scripture readings as we hear them here and now. If you want to get them via Email, subscribe to both of the lists below.

Written by Bob Fisher in: lent,resources,spirituality |

triumph to tragedy to transformation

holy week 08 image

Download: holy week 08 flyer (PDF, 950K)

for information call bob @ 267.377.7192 or bob@liveservegrow.info

Written by Bob Fisher in: Easter,gatherings,lent |

Marching forward

Palm Sunday, March 16 — CAL’s regular third Sunday worship at United Friends School, Quakertown, 3 p.m. Let’s walk together shouting Hosanna, participating in the Christ’s Last Supper and tracing Christ’s death on the cross. Holy Communion will be celebrated. Children will be included in the experience.

Good Friday, March 21 — Anyone interested in a quiet Bible study that night? Fishers will host, no dinner just coffee, cookies and quiet reflection. Let us know if you are interested.

The Vigil of Easter,
March 22 (Saturday) at 6:30 p.m.

United Friends School, Quakertown
Continuing our tradition, participate in the most ancient service of the church, The Vigil of Easter. Celebrate the resurrection of Christ in this ancient service mixed with a CAL experience. Children will be included in the worship.

Regular Worship, Friday March 28, 6:30 p.m. — at the home of the Potterfield family. Covered dish dinner followed by worship.

CAL is always looking for hosts for Friday worship. This can be dinner or just dessert. Please contact Bob Fisher (267.377.7192) or Laura Schafer.

Written by Bob Fisher in: announcements,Easter,gatherings,lent |

Out in the wilderness


Have you ever felt “out in the wilderness” – physically, emotionally, spiritually?

Continue your Lenten journey as we explore wilderness, a biblical metaphor for a common stage in the spiritual journey, and its place in our lives and journeys.

Sunday, February 17, 2008
3 p.m.

United Friends School
1018 W. Broad Street
Quakertown, PA 18951

Info: www.liveservegrow.info or call Bob @ 267.377.7192
Please bring an offering for the Quakertown Food Pantry

Wilderness worship flyer

Written by Bob Fisher in: announcements,gatherings,lent |

Be different this Lent

Reading: Joel 2:12-18

Return to the Lord, your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love, and relents from punishing. – Joel 2:13

For a season in my life Lent was about sacrifice: dropping extra change in a collection box or giving up dessert. Later it was about taking on something for God (sometimes another job in the church). This year I hear a more personal call from God, an invitation not to do anything but to be different.

God’s call is intimate. “Rend your hearts and not your clothing,” verse 13 begins. God always looks past the external things we like to show the world (and God), and knows and accepts us as we really are. God’s desire is that we come to know him more fully, not that we look like we’re sacrificing (though the two can go hand-in-hand).

God’s call is also communal. “Gather the people. Sanctify the congregation; assemble the aged; gather the children.” That’s why Christians @ Large will gather this Friday for the imposition of ashes and to be on holy ground with our merciful, loving God who relents from punishing.

Lent (which begins today, Ash Wednesday) has traditionally been a time of spiritual renewal and clarifying our place in God’s story. If you think about a Lenten “discipline,” consider a practice that will change who you are, not just what you do.

  • You could start or recommit to a daily time of reading Scripture and prayer. (The pray-as-you-go podcasts and the daily readings linked from our website at are good places to start.)
  • Try spending more of your prayer time listening to God, and less time talking. Notice what feelings and longings Scripture brings up in you, and let that guide your conversation with God.
  • If you are led to give something up for Lent, consider what changes would be good for you not just for 40 days but as permanent changes, and use the discipline of Lent to help you make your life more sustainable.
  • Pay more attention to what God is doing in and around you. The prophet Joel’s call summons brides and bridegrooms to leave their wedding for the assembly, which simply means that God uses our willingness to pay attention to him to shape our lives.

May this Lent be a time of refreshing our faith, clarifying who we are as people created by God, and renewing our commitment to live in the Way of Jesus.

God’s peace,


Written by Bob Fisher in: being church,lent,spirituality |

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