Saint Brennan Manning: A Ragamuffin to the End

saints ID

This was originally a sermon preached at Redemption Church on 11 NOV 2014. If you are a pastor, please feel free to copy and steal. One of the important aspects of our discipleship, often overlooked, involves the understanding that our relationship with God didn’t just appear out of thin air. Our faith has a history [Read More...]

What We Do With Our Pain: Barbara Brown Taylor & Spiritual Bypassing

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We talked about idols last week at Redemption Church. It felt like a hard sermon to give, because I think the idolatry of the church over the past few centuries has caused a lot of pain. So many people have fallen in love with a small “g” god, that promised them the world and couldn’t deliver. [Read More...]

The Hidden Kingdom: How We Get There is Where We Are Going

mustard seed

This was originally drafted as a sermon for Redemption Church on July 27, 2014. I rely heavily on a chapter from the book What the Dog Saw by Malcolm Gladwell, Reshaping National Intelligence for an Age of Information by Gregory Treverton, and The Seeds of Heaven by Barbara Brown Taylor (who is savant-like at sermon [Read More...]

Easter 7A – The Ascension of Christ: Acts 1:6-14

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This is the sermon I preached last week at Redemption Church. I borrowed heavily from a great sermon Barbara Brown Taylor wrote and published in her book Home By Another Way - which is essential for any pastor who preaches through the lectionary. If you are a pastor, feel free to copy and steal everything. 2014.06.01 [Read More...]

The Limits of Wisdom and the Wisdom of Limits: A Reflection at the Beginning of A New Year

Conventional-Loan-Limits

As I’ve been reflecting upon my year in 2013 there’s no doubt in my mind that it was the most difficult and the most painful year of my life. I’ve said more funeral liturgies, dealt with more personal challenges, experienced more wounding from relationships, faced more demanding professional circumstances, delved into new territory in terms [Read More...]

Monday Morning Confessional

I confess that I am getting really tired of being sick! The flu turned into pneumonia and has totally slammed me. I lost ten pounds last week, can you believe that? … not a weight loss plan I would recommend. Anyway, Dr. Scott gave me some sort of nuclear-powered antibiotics and I’m finally starting to [Read More...]

The Lost Art of Reverence: Finding Holy Ground In a World Where Nothing is Sacred

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I’m reading and preaching through Barbara Brown Taylor’s book An Altar in the World right now. This book is full of rich imagery and beautiful writing – profound and earthy. Last Sunday we considered the chapter on reverence. I had not previously considered how far out of the mainstream reverence is. Reverence isn’t hip anymore, irreverence [Read More...]

Pray Without Ceasing: Why Anyone Can Do It & Almost Nobody Does

Some scholars believe that the apostle Paul’s first letter to the Thessalonians could be the earliest written text in the New Testament (52AD). In chapter 5 there is a curiously short verse which says, “Pray without ceasing.” We all know the verse, and we all typically ignore it. I think we’re missing out on something [Read More...]

Monday Morning Confessional: How to Read a Book

I confess that I just finished Metaxas’s biography of Bonhoeffer for the second time. This time I listened to the audiobook. It’s the second time I’ve re-read an old favorite using the audiobook in order to save time. I confess that I’m beginning to really love audiobooks and am seriously thinking about making an audible.com [Read More...]

Lent as an Intentional Wilderness Experience: Barbara Brown Taylor and Cloud Cult Show the Way

Hold your breath for a better day, and you’ll never learn how to breathe.  You’re afraid of the dark, but that’s where you learn to see.  Your no good to the living if you’re too afraid to bleed.  And that’s why your show starts now Your show starts now. – The Show Starts Now, by [Read More...]


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