Forgetting the Love of God

‘But woe to you Pharisees! For you tithe mint and rue and herbs of all kinds, and neglect justice and the love of God; it is these you ought to have practiced, without neglecting the others.”- Luke 11:42-46Jesus accused the Pharisees of forgetting, neglecting two things: justice and the love of God. In other words, of violating the two greatest commandments (love God and love your neighbor). Leaving aside the HUGE topic of justice for the moment, the phrase “the love of God” was arresting to … [Read more...]

The Spiritual Formation of Things Not Going Our Way

I have found myself watching the news, reading Facebook and other social media outlets these last few weeks and months with a growing sense of anxiety.Whether you find yourself on the right or the left, with the progressives or the conservatives, there’s certainly enough in our daily feeds to stoke our sense that either we’re not going in the right direction, or “the other guys” are winning, or we aren’t moving quickly enough and there’s still a seemingly insurmountable challenge to getting t … [Read more...]

Doug, Tony and the Church Planters Academy

A few weeks ago I had the chance to fly out to Minneapolis and join Tony Jones, Doug Pagitt, Tim Keel, Tim Condor, Nadia Bolz-Webber and others in teaching a church planters academy. The event was "to equip and encourage those desiring to start new churches in fresh and entrepreneurial ways.For those who are starting new churches. For those who are exploring starting a new churches. For those who’ve already started churches and want to gather with others who are doing the same."My ge … [Read more...]

Last Chance For a Win-Win on Same-Sex Marriage?

This last week, two important things happened. First, the voters of North Carolina passed a State constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage. And then shortly after, President Obama reversed his long-held position against same-sex marriage and said, "It ought to be legal." In addition, the polls now show that the country is almost precisely divided in half for and against changing our laws on this issue.All of which lead me to believe that we will soon reach or have already reached … [Read more...]

There Is No Virtual Ecclesia

In the early 50’s when Robert Schuller and others across the nation combined a growing car culture with “Church” they believed they were reaching a segment of the population traditional church wouldn’t or couldn’t. Drive-In church allowed parishioners to attend, hear a sermon, sing some songs, even receive communion and give- all without the fuss and muss of face-to-face interaction beyond a passing usher with elements and a communion plate or maybe being greeted by a through-the-window handshake … [Read more...]

Mark Driscoll and Accountability

A number of years ago I was surprised by a phone call from someone high up in the Acts 29 network, the church planting organization started by Mark Driscoll and Mars Hill church in Seattle.The call was precipitated by some blogging I had done about Mark; the long and short of it was Mark had made some reckless and frankly crude comments in a public forum about an old friend and a goat. It was beyond the pale and he later apologized after inspiring the first of many internet uproars over his … [Read more...]

The Dangerous Pursuit of Pastoral Fame

As my chiropractor was working me over yesterday, she was asking about the reading I’m currently doing for a degree I’m working on. After I rattled off the titles and subjects of a number of leadership books, she said, “Wow, what are you going to do when you are finished with school—rule the world?”“Actually, I’m moving in the opposite direction,” I said.And I am trying to mean that. Genuinely.Over the last few years, I’ve thought long and hard about “my platform” as a pastor, a write … [Read more...]

The Gluttony of Busyness

I've been too busy to post here recently. I've been too busy for a lot of things. And that should tell me something...A paradox has emerged in this new millennium: people have enhanced quality of life, but at the same time they are adding to their stress levels by taking on more than they have resources to handle. It's as though their eyes were bigger than their stomachs.- David Allen, Getting Things DoneIt's more than likely that you've heard a message, read a book, or done some … [Read more...]

But How Amazing Is It That We Get To Help?

This Advent we are looking at the Christmas story through the lens of the Mission of God. So, this last Sunday we got to walk through parts of Isaiah asking, "What will this Kingdom God is bringing thru Jesus look like?" We want to know, if God is about the rescue and renewal of the world, what will that encompass? And more, what's OUR part in the story?Words like peace, justice, fairness, wholeness and flourishing (shalom)... This is what we are promised God is bringing about even now- … [Read more...]