LA Ronda D. Barnes

Preacher, Author, theologian, and Pastor  of Affirmation Church,

          A church without walls

“Time and geography will always impose limits on how much wealth anyone can succeed in accruing in a single lifetime. Given this natural limit, it seems wiser to set one’s own limits through the exercise of contentment. In contrast, when it comes to acquiring mental riches, the potential is limitless. Here, where there is no natural limit, it is appropriate not to be contented with what you have, but to constantly strive for more. Unfortunately, most of us do the exact opposite. We are never quite satisfied with what we have materially, but we tend to be thoroughly complacent about our mental riches.”(Emphasis in original)

Bstan-ʼdzin-rgya-mtsho, Dalai Lama XIV, Beyond Religion: Ethics for a Whole World (Boston, MA: Mariner Books/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2012), 147.

Texts Quoted in Sermon

“My Own Voice”

I can only speak

            in my own voice…no other.

Sometimes, the lovely words,

            the breathtaking phrases

            someone else has written

            cause me to question the beauty &

            efficacy & value of my own expression…

Creative Spirit, give me the courage

            to stand on my own two feet…

            to find & use my own voice…

            to value the drop I make

                        in life’s vast ocean.

Help me to continue my search,

            my pilgrimage,

            to mindfulness and meaning…

            to grace and gratitude…

            to cherishing & celebration.

Let me whirl & twirl in

            the dance of life,

            singing at the top of my voice,

                        yes!     yes!    yes!!!

 “My Own Voice,” Linda Faltin, New Day Dawning: Everyday Encounters with the Holy (Victoria, BC: Trafford Publishing 2006), 116.

Related Item(s) for Reflection/Prayer

“If then there is any encouragement in Christ, any consolation from love, any sharing in the Spirit, any compassion and sympathy, make my joy complete: be of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility regard others as better than yourselves. Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others. Let the same mind be in you that was[a] in Christ Jesus….”

Philippians 2:1-5 (translation: New Revised Standard Version)

Reflection Pieces

Gospel of Curiosity - Part I: Introduction