I am a Mennonite pastor. At times this calling has felt like a blessing; other times much like a curse.

I share the pastorate with my wife, very literally. We both of us went to seminary (Eastern Mennonite Seminary in Harrisonburg Virginia), we both of us get paid, and we both of us share in the ministry we have been called to.

However, while we both do all the work, I tend to get the credit because I’m the male. That’s infuriating at times, embarrassing at times, humorous and depressing at times.

In this season of life, I identify most with the Old Testament story of Jacob wrestling with the angel of God (Genesis 32:22-32). Good preaching, like good ministry, is like that struggle.

Jacob doesn’t give up until the angel gives him both a blessing and a limp. I believe church is the arena in which we wrestle with angels and demons, clutching to that elusive hope which defines and denies us until we come away injured.

I’m in a spot where the injury is more obvious than the blessing, and my understanding of “Blessing” is being injured along those same lines.

So welcome to this blog. I hope and trust you’ll find some helpful resources here as you engage your own struggle with the Beast we call God. I offer my sermons here, because frankly I work pretty hard every week to say something that’s both honest and edifying, and it seems a shame to just tuck them away in an office drawer after one use.

I also offer sundry thoughts, rabbit trails, and musings (hence the title of this blog), most often about faith and life, with the occasional poem, rant, or question. One thing I don’t like about church as usual is the lack of conversation about what I’m doing up front. So please, post your comments if you’re interested in a conversation.

Please be respectful; I moderate so it might take awhile for your comment to appear…and then only if I deem it to be written in a respectful tone. If you really like what you see here, feel free to follow me on Twitter (@nafzigpa) or find me on facebook. Thanks for stopping by!


2 Responses to About

  1. bobstuhlmann says:

    Hello brother, I’m moved by your “about” page. I tell my Rabbi friend that these times do go by pretty fast and the tough times are sometimes great teachers. I think you are a more evolved soul than I as you are able to talk sensitively about the disparity between male and female roles. I suspect it’s harder for your wife to see your great progress. Hope some of the stories on the blog will warm you two on some cold winter nights. Bob.

    • nafzigpa says:

      Thanks Bob, this ministry thing is hard work! It helps to have contemplative friends and co-workers such as yourself for some nourishment on the journey.

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