We're used to the stories that Jesus taught, but what about the story that Jesus lived out? How were the actions of Jesus a kind of story that he lived as well, and how can we be careful about the stories our lives our telling?
When we imagine God as the angry father, or the disappointed authority figure, of course we are afraid to go to him in prayer. How can we move towards knowing God as faithful and loving, and then pray like he is?
Ancient Israel formed and molded it's creation story around the chaos they experienced in the destruction of Jerusalem and their exile. What does what they believed - and what Genesis teaches - about God's role in creation have to do with the ordering of our lives today, and how do we move into the chaos that's so unsettling.
The story of advent is a story that unmakes all other stories, and then gives us all an entirely new - and unexpected - story to tell. How can we always be learning as we lean into new ideas and new things and new ways of experiencing reality.
Jack now is tasked with explaining Christmastown to Halloween town - but how can he? Or how can he faithfully represent this new thing in a way that the folks in Halloweentown will understand? Which leads us to the same questions for ourselves...
Jack experiences an uncontrollable joy in his discovery of Christmas town - as if everything he's ever waited for and wanted has come true in this new place. That sort of Joy should be a part of our own journeys and experiences, especially during advent, as we anticipate the coming of Jesus.
A lot of us can connect to Jack Skellington's disillusionment in Halloweentown - he's king of everything, and he needs more. Join us this advent, as we explore Tim Burton's "Nightmare Before Christmas" as an allegory for what happens when we have seen Christmastown, but have to go back and make sense of it in Halloweentown.