After blogging for years over at blogspot (where you can find all the old stuff about movies, sexuality, politics, faith, doubt, Iran, Iraq, money, sleep, books, mountains, coffee… it’s all there if you nose around long enough), I’m moving over here to a different site, in hopes of focusing my thoughts and creativity a bit, trimming my efforts down to address three things:

1. Questions – I’m a pastor, and so I get real questions all the time.  “Why are we on the brink of bankruptcy after all these years of faithfully serving God?”  “Where the hell was God when my husband ran over our three year old daughter?”  “What’s wrong with a little oral sex among friends?”  “How can I make Bible reading less boring?”  “Why am I so bothered by Christian’s snappy answers?”  “How do I know that I’m believing truth and not somebody’s fable?” and many more.

I won’t pretend to have all the answers, or even most of the answers, because if there’s anything I despise, it’s arrogance born of premature conclusions.  But I do have thoughts, because I’m equally suspicious of the postmodern notion that we’re awash in an epistemological storm that is sinking all convictions.  I don’t buy it.    As a result,  I have thoughts, and probably more questions, and some arrows to point the enquirer in what I hope is good direction.

At other times, I’ll post because I have questions and I’m looking for your input.  Thanks, in advance, for your help.

Bridges… I think it was Thomas Merton who talked about having a Bible in one hand, and the Chicago Times in another.   He saw the task of the priest as that of mediator, standing between the two worlds.  I love that task, because I love this world and the God who made it.   This world’s food, art, music, politic, ethic, economic system(s), recreation, relational angst, and everything else, seems to provide insights and windows into the God who so often appears to be invisibly present, right in the midst of it all.  I like to build bridges between this God and the beautiful yet broken world this God made.

Life… There are issues and observations, too many to mention, that just seem to come up in daily living.  I’ll write about them if it appears that they might be helpful in some small way.  The topics could range wildly, from coffee and cooking, to sexuality and sunsets.  I think God cares about all of it, wants all of it shot through with His glory, and it interested in showing us the way there.

Welcome.  I hope you’ll join me often.

About Richard Dahlstrom

As Pastor of Bethany Community Church in Seattle, Richard teaches with vision of "making the invisible God visible" by calling people to acts of service and blessing. It's working, as a wilderness ministry, homeless shelter, and community meals that serve those living on the margins are all pieces of Bethany's life. "We're being the presence of Christ" he says, "and inviting everyone to join the adventure." Many have, making Bethany one of the fastest growing churches in America in 2009 according to Outreach Magazine.

  • Bryce Schober

    Hey, could you enable full-text in the RSS feed? Or maybe it was intentional that you move to a snipped format…

  • suj’n

    I love the image of holding the Bible in one hand and the Chicago Times in the other. Thank you for that reference.