the difference between cultivating communities and building churches.

kathyescobar church stuff, down we go, dreams, incarnational, leadership 2 Comments

Yesterday at The Refuge’s Sunday night gathering we had some cupcakes and sang happy 11th birthday to The Refuge. It’s hard for me to believe it’s been 11 years. When it started I was just wrapping up my 30’s and now, in 3 weeks, I will be turning 50 years old (more on that soon, yikes!). The Refuge is a Christian community and mission center, and I’m always reminded how that’s different from our typical view of “church.” I’ve written about this before in Down We Go and …

WTF, God?

kathyescobar faith shifts, healing, incarnational 6 Comments

One of my greatest joys is to journey alongside people in their honest relationship with God.  I have yet to encounter someone in spiritual direction who was saying things like “I am feeling so great spiritually!” “I’ve never been this connected to God.” or “I am completely filled up.”  Usually, our conversations are wrestling with disconnection, fear, anger, mistrust, separation, and honestly a lot of questions that start with WTF, God? I understand that a lot of people might be offended by that. Can we really …

who do we defer to?

kathyescobar church stuff, down we go, dreams, incarnational, injustice 14 Comments

Most anyone who knows me knows one important thing about me: I care deeply about folks on the margins. What that means is that people who are normally not in the main stream of power are my priority. This also means different things to different people, but on the whole, people on the margins are more vulnerable than others. For me, this includes: people of color, those living in poverty and consistently under-resourced financially, those struggling with mental health issues, people with a range of disabilities, single …

strap in, dream making is a brutal bumpy road

kathyescobar down we go, dreams, equality, incarnational, injustice 0 Comments

Today is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. I always love remembering Dr. King and the beautiful work he and so many others did and are doing on behalf of equality and justice. I’m a dreamer. A hopeful realist. A “we can do it” kind of person. I believe in MLK’s dream, and oh, I’ve written about dreams over all these years in so many different ways. Dreams Re-dux, Dreaming and Making What Could Be, Be, We Have a Dream, This Dream is so Possible, Dreamers, Lovers, …

sanctuary people.

kathyescobar down we go, equality, friendship, incarnational, injustice 1 Comment

I was happy to hear last week that Boulder, Colorado, which is just north of where we live, has declared itself a “sanctuary city” related to immigrants at risk. I’m attending another meeting next week about churches becoming “sanctuary churches,” safe places for individuals and families who could be deported (The Refuge can’t host overnight guests because of provisions in our lease but I’m looking forward to learning more at the meeting). Some of the definitions of “sanctuary” include: 1. a sacred or holy place. 2. the part of a church around the altar. 3. a church or other sacred place where fugitives were formerly entitled to immunity from arrest. 4. any place of refuge; asylum. It made me …

God, in the thick of us.

kathyescobar advent & lent, incarnational, jesus is cool 0 Comments

I wrote this post a few years ago for Sheloves Magazine and thought I’d repost it today, this Christmas Eve, 2016. I am so grateful God is here, in the thick of our messy, beautiful lives and the world’s beautiful mess. // With. Years ago I first came into contact with three prepositions that could change the way we viewed living out our faith–to, for, or with.  When it comes to kingdom living, prepositions do matter. Doing things “to” people or “for” people are two of the most familiar ways …

as Christians, this shouldn’t be crazy.

kathyescobar church stuff, crazy making, down we go, incarnational 4 Comments

Let’s face it, friends. Christianity is certainly in an interesting season. The divides are great. The mass exodus from “going to church” continues. The number of men and women of all shapes and sizes and ages and experiences now unraveling in their faith keeps growing. The political party leap-frog game from Republican to Democrat or Independent is hotter than ever. I personally think it’s all a good thing. While some see it as a decline in our moral fabric or a complacency or rejection of the scriptures …

what we’re willing to live with.

kathyescobar church stuff, crazy making, down we go, equality, faith shifts, incarnational, injustice 16 Comments

I am so sick and saddened by the entire Trump Travesty. Seriously, it is so dignity stripping–that he is even a contender. That multiple Christian leaders have endorsed him. That the Republican party got behind him. That people are wrestling with their “hard choice” (#itsnotahardchoice). That we’d have a debate like that. I am glad things are tipping in a new direction and finally so many people are waking up, speaking out louder, withdrawing their support. However, please remember that up until this point many of …