‘Pi’ and ‘Lincoln,’ grateful for bad luck, and more from UU bloggers

Talking about God

After a period of angry, grieving rejection of God-talk, the Rev. Andy Burnette is ready to talk about God again.

It’s a different God, to be sure. This God is beyond my ability to describe. . . . Most answers to the God question ignore either the beauty of the world or the suffering. That’s why I don’t trust answers about God. God is an open question, and I’m ready to engage it again. (Just Wondering, November 26)

The Rev. Jude Geiger celebrates UU uncertainty about God.

If you are craving an affirmation or a negation of the nature or existence of God, I can only say again: That’s not how we do theology. . . . Our theology is both a faith statement and a process of reflection. Our faith teaches us that we can expect to continue to be inspired, to learn from one another, and to seek out that spiritual growth. (HuffPost Religion, November 28)

Gratitude for blessings and struggles

Christine Organ explains that she is thankful “for adversities and crappy bad luck.”

To me, genuine gratitude means that we are not only thankful for our blessings, but also our struggles. . . . Because in every struggle and challenge, there is a tiny gem of hope; there is sliver of resiliency; there is a hardy nugget of truth. (Random Reflectionz, November 21)

Kelly Kilmer Hall reflects, with gratitude, on “what a difference a year makes.”

[Mostly] I’m grateful to be part of a faith community that lives its values. It is the strength of my call to ministry, of my relationships with amazing colleagues and congregants, and the power of spiritual practice that has gotten me through and given me the gifts that I have in my life today. (Seeking Divinity, November 21)

UUs at the movies

The Rev. Tom Schade writes about the Lincoln movie he wishes would be made.

I still want Daniel Day-Lewis in the role, but I want to see him follow the unfolding contradiction between [Lincoln’s] irenic rhetoric and implacable resistance to black empowerment in the South. I would like to see a happy ending to this story, if only in a movie, just so, we can all understand what might have been, and what might still be. (the lively tradition, November 26)

The Rev. James Ford liked the movie Life of Pi, and was fascinated by a question at the heart of the story.

If you are presented with an event too horrific to look at straight on, is it okay to have another story that is less directly painful, more allegoric or metaphoric? . . . [For] me, I want my religion straight on. Stories and myths and metaphors all have a place in the great mix. But not as substitutes for facing things. (Monkey Mind, November 26)

Dragons and druids

Newly-pregnant Christine Leigh Slocum is not reassured by her friends’ comments that no one is ready to be a parent.

[These] stories about universal unpreparedness are kind of like hearing that the dragon you are about to battle with was slayed only by folks who lacked prior training and came armed with dull cutlery. You too, spoon in hand, will succeed, they’ll say, pointing at the fire-breathing lizard staring you down. (Seattleite from Syracuse, November 27)

With a friend scheduled for major surgery, Liz James posts a poem about her husband’s work as a physician.

I never see them
the covenant of druids he works with
huddled over the operating table as though it were a cauldron
they wave magic hands

some days he comes home flying . . . .
other days he comes home a dry hollow . . . (Rebel with a Label Maker, November 21)

Around the blogosphere

Andy Coate explains his “Trans Rights Now” button to a five-year-old.

Sometimes . . . baby boys don’t want to grow up to be big boys or men; they feel like they aren’t really a boy. Maybe they feel like a girl, and maybe they don’t feel like a boy or a girl, so they might dress differently or cut their hair differently than people think a boy should. And sometimes . . . baby girls don’t want to grow up to be big girls or women so they might dress more like boys and maybe cut their hair.  That’s called being transgender, or trans. (thoughts ON, November 16)

Tandi Rogers wonders how Unitarian Universalism might show up in the most exciting places in pop culture.

How can we start acting like the vibrant, transformational religious community that we are, out in the public square? Rather than showing up unintentionally on radio and late-night shows, where could the voice of Unitarian Universalism be, shining light on justice and love?  (Growing Unitarian Universalism, November 27)

The Rev. Dr. Cynthia Landrum shares a list of science fiction recommendations compiled by members of her ministers’ study group, the Ohio River Group. (Rev. Cyn, November 16)