The best answer to the idea that Joseph had the pyramids built to store grain might be Steve Martin’s classic and hilarious “King Tut. Tut was, Martin sings, buried in a “condo made of stone-a” which is a closer-to-the-facts description of a pyramid (

Donald Trump actually said, “I am a great Christian.” Jesus actually said: “Those who would be greatest among you must be servants of all.”  And, I actually know that to criticize someone else for saying he’s a great Christian and to quote Jesus in my criticism is to make myself appear to be both clever and humble, which means I am, on a pride-humility continuum, much closer to Trump that to Jesus.  Ouch.

It’s a commonplace observation, but each year’s season of the turning and falling of the leaves is a poignant metaphor for our lives. I’ve been pondering how the bursting, dazzling palate of colors with which God paints the once-green hills and valleys, and the swirling, dancing, play of leaves are, simultaneously, a gift of wonder and an invitation to contemplate how life’s movement toward death can be a thing of beauty. The grandeur of the leaves comes from the ebbing away of life in them, and it’s a marvel how such diminishment and decay can bring so much delight.

In his best known and lovely poem, William Carlos Williams said, “So much depends on a red wheel barrow glazed with rain water beside the white chickens.”  Apparently, these days, so much depends on a red paper coffee cup from Starbucks.  Good grief.

“Good grief” reminds me that the new Peanuts movie is out and that the November issue of The Atlantic features an article by Sarah Boxer on “The Exemplary Narcissism of Snoopy.” She notes that, as the strip’s creator, Charles Schulz was nearing his death, Snoopy grappled with “big questions, the existential ones.” 

The strip dated January 15, 2000, shows Snoopy on his doghouse. “I’ve been very tense lately,” Snoopy thinks, rising up stiffly from his horizontal position. “I find myself worrying about everything … Take the Earth, for instance.” He lies back down, this time on his belly, clutching his doghouse: “Here we all are clinging helplessly to this globe that is hurtling through space …” Then he turns over onto his back: “What if the wings fall off?”

Sometimes it feels to me like the wings are in danger of falling-off.  The globe to which we cling is in such fragile condition and so many people who live on it suffer in myriad ways—from hunger and disease, war and terror, poverty and oppression, loneliness and fearfulness.  Hope can be in short supply.

I know a lot less these days than I used to know, but I find the hope I have in the conviction that when we fall—however and “why-ever” we fall—we are caught and kept and held in the arms of God. As the Apostle Paul said: “I am persuaded that nothing shall separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus.”