United Church of Christ

Devotionals by Rachel Hackenberg

The start of Advent lays bare the world’s pain, without which there would be no reason for God’s coming. No reason for angels singing. No reason for prophets preaching.


The start of Advent lays bare the world’s pain, without which there would be no reason for God’s coming. No reason for angels singing. No reason for prophets preaching.


I know God’s ways are not my ways, but it still throws me for a loop that God is a storm as often as God is a silence. That God is an eruption as often as God is a stillness.


The moon is spending more time in the autumn skies, whispering another necessary truth: The lengthening hours of the night are a gift for our repentance and restoration.


Maybe pacing and moaning are the best prayers your uncomforted spirit can offer right now. So offer them. Without embarrassment. Without reserve.


All by myself, I have a habit of singing the same songs. Listening to the same Spotify playlist. Rehearsing the same worldview. Repeating the same prayers.


I wonder how we might live differently if we turned aside more often to notice miracles, if we called out miracles as steadfastly as we call out sin and injustice.


The wisdom of distance doesn’t erase people’s desire for nearness. And touch. And comfort. A small bit of flame to keep warm. A hand to hold.


Maybe you’ve been feeling tired. Heart low. Eyes downcast. Overwhelmed. Too discouraged to place much hope in goodness. Hush – be still in the solace of God’s lap.


It’s a strategy of power that has been taught through the generations: pledge allegiance to many gods (wealth, nation, race, religion) to guard what you believe to be yours.