Wendell Berry on the Trinity

It’s Trinity Sunday today, so here’s a quick quote from Wendell Berry and his great novel Jayber Crow. Berry is not only an author and poet, but a fairly sophisticated theologian. This quote is of Jayber reflecting upon what he learned about the nature of God, and how it fits with what he knew of the [Read More…]

Jayber Crow by Wendell Berry: 10 Great Quotes from a Masterpiece

“You have been given questions to which you cannot be given answers. You will have to live them out – perhaps a little at a time.” “To love anything good, at any cost, is a bargain.” “I could die in peace, I think, if the world was beautiful. To know it’s being ruined is hard.” [Read More…]

The First Word of 2016 Goes to Wendell Berry

If Wendell Berry were editing the aphorism, “Hell is other people” it would become, “Hell is busy people in search of something more, or something else… Heaven is a good friend.” On this first day of 2016 we do well to consider these hells and heavens that we inhabit, that we have made of the world. “Hell is [Read More…]

Sneak Peek at the Missional Leadership & Discipleship Course Next Semester at NTS

The mission of God is unmanageable. This is where the conversation about missional leadership begins. When it comes to the kingdom of God, we cannot control outcomes with even the most ingenious models, techniques, and strategies. God is going to do what God is going to do with the church, and God can never be controlled or [Read More…]

What is the Path to Human Freedom? (It’s Not What You Think It Is)

Freedom is a big deal in our culture—the founding virtue of American society—despite the fact that most of us have a naïve understanding of what we mean when we claim to be free. Freedom is typically defined as self-determination; no limits. We are free to do whatever we want to do, so long as we [Read More…]

Why the Church Is In Decline…

I love the church. I believe in the church. I believe in the church maybe more than I believe in any other thing in this world. The church is the surest sign I know of that God loves everything he’s created; that God is not done with the world. The church is the singular reality [Read More…]

Wendell Berry on What It Means to Be an Author

I’ve been reading some Wendell Berry this week in preparation for what I’m talking about on Sunday. I love his straight forward and often hilarious take on life–for instance: hell, or limits, or farming. I ran across this note int he introduction to his book, Sex, Economy, Freedom, and Community, which is a collection of [Read More…]

Ordinary 15A / 16A – Sower & Seeds, Soil & Weeds: A Sermon from Matthew 13

This is my sermon from last week. If you are a pastor, feel free to copy and steal everything. 2014.07.13 – Discipleship Matt. 13 – Sower & Seeds, Soil & Weeds During a sabbatical a few years back, Kristin and I took a trip to Ireland. We rented a tiny car, drove south along the [Read More…]

Poverty, Inequality are Symptoms of a Fundamental Problem: We Want to Live Without Limits

Do a Google Image search for the phrase “No Limits” and see how many of the hits are from churches promoting a sermon series by that title. That’ll tell you how far off the church is on one of the most important problems plaguing our contemporary culture. It seems as though we’ve reached a tipping [Read More…]

Happy Earth Day! (Or as we evangelicals like to call it, Tuesday).

Evangelicals are known for our skepticism of science. We’re also a tad bit prone toward conspiracy theories. I was a biology major at a state school known for agriculture, so I spent to much time listening to the dynamics of global warming to shrug it off as a hoax. Yet, we still have a fair [Read More…]