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Take Root Publishing
Jacksonville, FL
Owner Take Root Publishing LLC
Recent Activity
Jesus’ wounds served a purpose. They were a silent but visible proclamation of the Gospel of God’s mercy. There is another post-resurrection story that may implicitly speak of his scars. In Luke 24: 14 – 35 we have the story of two unnamed forlorn disciples who were sadly slouching their way to the village, Emmaus, when Jesus, who appeared as a stranger, joined them. Continue reading
Posted Jul 15, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
Our past imbues our present. Sometimes unearthing pieces of our forgotten lives is part of God’s healing process. I certainly don’t encourage anyone to dwell on the past or to drown oneself in introspection. Instead, concentrate on loving God. Study to pray well and often. Practice acts of kindness and mercy. God is our healer. He certainly wants to restore his image in us. Self-loathing or any other negativity is not part of his plan for us. His purpose for our lives is wholeness, healing, peace. Continue reading
Posted Jul 4, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
“Who are you?” “I am. And, who are you?” “I am Daddy’s child.” “I love to hear you say my name.” “I am Daddy’s child?” I answered. “Yes. We share my name. It is our family name.” Continue reading
Posted Jul 4, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
A sexual offender with a probation monitoring box on his ankle and a large receiver on his hip (very chunky and impossible to hide) was in a service at St. John’s Cathedral (Episcopal) and the Dean (the in-charge ordained lady) learned about his presence and then about his charge; and then she had a fit Continue reading
Posted Jun 29, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
The glare of institutional ceiling lights wrapped an eerie halo about him. He was alone. He was wet, potentially visible to at least 70 pairs of eyes. He was shaving his groin and legs. For all the dreariness and relentless sameness of prison there are occasional and exceptional moments of strangeness, ugliness, beauty or uniqueness which have tattooed themselves in my memory. This was one. Continue reading
Posted Jun 22, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
In the past two years I have saved the lives of a handful of lizards. I have rescued them from the windshield of a moving vehicle, from a bucket of exterior latex paint and from the mouths of cats. If lizards used Facebook or other social media I am sure that some of these who ran for their lives would have, instead, been friendlier. As it was my ministry among lizards has gone completely unnoticed. Continue reading
Posted Jun 15, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
The blow to the head knocked me out. I woke up on a table with a bag of ice on the side of my face. When I arrived home my mother was greeted with a son whose face was at least 25% larger than when she saw him four hours earlier. She gave another ice treatment, some aspirins and put me to bed. The lack of alarm over my wellbeing seemed normal to me. Continue reading
Posted Jun 9, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
she had the difficulty and painful burden of inviting, scheduling and managing family members to these events; relations who have bitter anger separating them. In that I am the one they are angry at I was well aware of the emotional weight and work she had to do to enjoy the celebrations with loved ones she wanted with her at this special time. Her emotional and social burden reminded me of an old Buddhist parable. Continue reading
Posted May 16, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
I found 2200 wing, E-Dorm; E2-207, my house. I turned in. Fortunately, I found it empty. I leaned over the stainless steel lavatory-toilet and pressed my forehead to the 4” by 8” opaque plastic mirror which I did not peer into. In a vain attempt to relieve stress I slowly pounded the palm of my hand onto the cold concrete block wall. Continue reading
Posted May 4, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
I recalled the Catholic idea of lifting up our sorrows as sacrifices in prayer. Instead of wallowing in self-pity or bending God’s ear once again with my pitiful state I would instead “lift them up” and pray for others. Continue reading
Posted May 2, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
come to my help. When you are suffering you want help quick. “Make haste!” cries the psalmist in his pain. When Mary heard from the angel that her old cousin was pregnant she knew Elizabeth was in for some suffering. So she made haste to go help. Suffering easily motivates us to pray. And in prayer we ask God to make haste. It would be nice if prayer was equivalent to calling 911. A person is hurt at home or on the road, call 911 and here comes the emergency vehicles with flashing lights. That is the human conception of haste. Continue reading
Posted Apr 28, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
These are valid, stinging sorrows. They make life very difficult. Still, I have learned to discover joy. It is always there. I may as well look for it. The finding of joy in this unlikely spot has let me to the metaphor, ice water in hell. Continue reading
Posted Apr 25, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
When we are miserly with God it is we who are the losers, not God. God is a lover and a giver, a giver who gave his all, in fact, his only son. What did God get for his great gift? The church. The redeemed. The saints. Us. A cynic might say he didn’t get a very good return on his investment. However, God’s economy is an economy of love Continue reading
Posted Apr 23, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
Standing on a concrete pad where a large diesel tank had been removed, I stared out through the 12' security fence, topped with razor wire. I saw the parade of men in blue going to lunch. It was very cold, windy, at most 45 degrees. Continue reading
Posted Apr 20, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
will see the Lord.” Holiness is absorbed, not learned. You cannot attain holiness by listening to sermons or reading. Holiness is not imparted by passing on teaching. It does not come through processing information. It comes from being close to the Holy One. Continue reading
Posted Apr 18, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
This prison environment is such a fish bowl that – even if you seek a low-profile and wear “blinders”, as I do—...I have always heard praise is a powerful spiritual weapon so, I sang loud. It was obvious this was my response to the robbery. I found out later the thieves heard my praise. Continue reading
Posted Apr 14, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
“I will prove I am speaking with you,” said St. Thérése. “Bend down and pick up a four-leaf clover.” ... a deeper understanding of the divine conversation where the Holy Spirit is the engine of grace. Continue reading
Posted Apr 12, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
On a beautiful November morning I woke my 13-year old up at 3:30 a.m. to see the Leonid meteor showers. I put a sleeping bag on the east side of the roof and I watched shooting stars as my daughter slept curled next to me. Continue reading
Posted Apr 11, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
In our circumstances (job loss, arrest, loss of friends or money, divorce, car trouble, etc.), we feel his passion challenging us, “Do you see what you are doing to yourself? To others? Why do you doubt me? “ His words come to us through our deafness by the shaking of reality, of circumstances in real time. Circumstances allow us to wake up to the awareness that life has purpose and challenge us to discover the meaning of life. Continue reading
Posted Apr 11, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
There is no way to not sin. There is no way to avoid failures. It is almost a universal tendency to warp our psyches in shame. This we learn in the foundational doctrine of “original sin”. We are children of Adam and Eve and basically have inherited our sin nature – it’s in our DNA, as it were Continue reading
Posted Apr 4, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
As long as it fits in with the flow and I can manage to feel invisible I can manage. Tonight I was coerced into running the overhead projector so the worshipers could see the lyrics as they sang. I decided to do a good joy but it made me grumpy. I made a point of showing any would look just what a huge sacrifice this was. I did not have my worship on. I looked more like Oscar the Grouch. Continue reading
Posted Mar 30, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
They threw him out (of Temple). When Jesus heard that they had thrown him out, he found him and said, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?” . . . “I do believe Lord.” . . . Then Jesus said, “I came into this world for judgement, so that those who do not see might see, and those who do see might become blind.” John 9: 1-41 Continue reading
Posted Mar 26, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
I who come from dust and will return to dust offer to his glory, my life and my work. My faith gifts as notable and substantial as a child’s hurried scrawl in crayon. And, I am comforted to know that even though my flesh, my thoughts and my work may be light as dust in the air, God’s love for me and his hold on me is not. Continue reading
Posted Mar 21, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
A fellow named Joe is with us. He tells me he spent 30 years in a Florida prison. He seems happy enough but he has lifetime parole and that will sting eventually. Nevertheless, it will always be an improvement over life in lock-up Continue reading
Posted Mar 16, 2016 at Take Root Devotions
His disheveled hair crowned his head like a fright wig or like pine needles carelessly raked in the wind. I could see his eyes, pools of fear and frustration. His clothes needed to be tossed into a burn barrel. He stood apart from the other bus riders who hung closer together near the Plexiglas shelter on the corner. Continue reading
Posted Mar 14, 2016 at Take Root Devotions