When I Talk About Race I Feel Like a Phony: The Problem of Being White & Talking About Racism

Many black leaders have been bitterly disappointed that President Obama has not shown more leadership in the arena of race. They might have a point. It’s not as though he hasn’t had the opportunity. From Travon Martin, to Ferguson, to Charleston, the opportunity for a President to actually do something with regard to the issue of race has not been this auspicious since JFK.I must admit I am no better. I am white, educated, and male. I am mostly blind to my own affluence, and privilege. I live … [Read More...]


2015 Missio Alliance North American Gathering

Missio Alliance just posted the audio files from their North American gathering held in Alexandria, VA last May. You can find them in the Resources section of their website: www.missioalliance.org. I cannot recommend this resource highly enough, & I thought I’d take this opportunity to post a few thoughts about what I experienced at this gathering.It has been years since I have gone to a seminar or conference—really any wider gathering of Christians—without experience that square-peg feel … [Read More...]

Wise Words from an Ex-Cop: The Police Guardian v. The Police Warrior

"Officers... must realize that the public—even a group of non-compliant teenagers—are not an enemy to be vanquished, but civilians to be protected." - Seth Stoughton I just read a phenomenal article from TPM & Seth Stoughton, a former cop who now teaches at the University of S … [Read More...]

10 Great Words You Should Know & Use

One doesn’t have a good vocabulary; one maintains a good vocabulary. Evelyn Waugh was right to say, “One forgets words as one forgets names. One's vocabulary needs constant fertilizing or it will die.”When at their best, writers work diligently at the use of language because we know that langu … [Read More...]

Anne Lamott on Perfectionism

"Perfectionism is another way we avoid vulnerability, and it also happens to be my favorite sin... I tell myself that if I do it perfectly every time, then no one can critique me, and I don’t have to feel vulnerable." Shrink, p. 148. I'm a recovering perfectionist. So every now and t … [Read More...]

How does the word Christian modify the word Leader?

Nearly every pastor or ministry leader I've ever met operates under the same underlying assumption that their main job is to make their church or ministry grow. This assumption is typically not a conscious thought, although it is in many cases. The assumption is highly operative, and uncritically … [Read More...]

Why the “Big Drop in Share of Americans Calling Themselves Christian” Isn’t Our Problem

The New York Times reported earlier this week on the sharp decline in the number of Americans who self-identify as Christians. I'm guessing Christians will likely blame this on shifting cultural values or some other outside phenomenon. As for my take, I think the church should probably be able to … [Read More...]

Monday Morning Confessional: Frederick Buechner, and Listening to Your Life

I confess that a friend of mine just picked up Listening to Your Life: Daily Meditations with Frederick Buechner, and sent me a pic that reminded me of this great little devotional book. I'm grateful for the reminder.There were a couple of years in the late 90s, while I was traveling with … [Read More...]

Nazarene Controversy Highlighted in The Daily Beast: Here’s My Take…

I'm just going to give you my take on this, then link back to the article...Karl W. Giberson is serious scholar, and a former faculty member at Eastern Nazarene College. Giberson says Oord is the victim of a fundamentalists witch hunt. He says, "The controversy at NNU is one battle in the long … [Read More...]

Earthday: Why Christians are so Bad on the Environment

Do you know what scientists commonly call ecological studies? Dissipation studies: Terrestrial field dissipation studies, soil dissipation studies, habitat dissipation studies, natural resource dissipation studies, petroleum, forest, reef, fisheries dissipation studies…The Catholic theologian R … [Read More...]

New Shrink Video Releases Today: A Creative Introduction

Author readings are all over youtube.com, but I've never seen an author take any care with the medium--make any kind of creative investment in them. I have long thought author reading videos could have value beyond their use as a promotional tool. They could exist as a creative way to experience the … [Read More...]

Everyday Sundays: Frederick Buechner on Why the Subdued Sundays of Eastertide are So Important

In his sermon "The Secret in the Dark," Frederick Buechner wonders at why in the four gospels, when they get to the most important part of the story (resurrection), the gospel writers tell it in whispers--no choir of angels, no explosion of light, not a soul was there to witness it. "It was the … [Read More...]