Archives for December 2009

Merry Christmas….

Merry Christmas from Austria... I'll be on holiday until New Year's Eve. In the meantime, here's a gift I've shared with my family as a way of saying: God has blessed me beyond all I could ask, hope, imagine.May you know Christ's life as your hope, peace, and joy throughout the new year.See you in 2010 … [Read more...]

Rest and Wounds

After falling last Thursday on the ski slope in Austria, I could barely move. My fall was a mere 150 meters of skiing above the gondola, which I needed to enter in order to get down the mountain, for only the top half is presently up and running. It was getting dark, and every turn made my insides feel as if they were being pulled apart, so much so that I briefly considered sitting on the snow and waiting for help to come.As the nature of my injury became clear, I did what I'm prone to with … [Read more...]

Lessons from the Faithful in Munich…

In case you weren't at Bethany Community Church yesterday (and even if you were), I thought you'd enjoy this little production, created by roaming around Munich in search of learning more about Sophie Scholl and the White Rose.Many people ask about the fruit of their work.  I can offer two stories, and with each, a word of hope from the Scriptures.  First, when the news of the White Rose reached America, the allies printed the leaflets by the tens of thousands and air-dropped them over the G … [Read more...]

touching graduation night in Austria… and I love my job

Last night, the students who'd come together twelve weeks ago to begin their Bible School experience, brought it to completion with a graduation supper, and a closing service, honoring both the students and the staff who, together, were the body of Christ in this beautiful part of the world for the past months.  I do the last week of teaching because my lectures are on I Corinthians, which is about what it means to be a church, an appropriate topic for just before students leave.The week was … [Read more...]

Quick greetings from Austria… and the work of Tauernhoff

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For… a plea for beauty

Our church staff was looking at this article yesterday, which articulates some data from the Barna research people about how Christians are perceived by those who are not.  I wonder if the real Jesus, not the one conservatives and liberals have fabricated, would be perceived as boring (remember when he walked on water, remember the accusation that he went to the wrong parties, the ones with unreligious people), or judgmental (remember the women caught in adultery who, in accordance with … [Read more...]

Warming up to these ideas yet?

With a world conference beginning to address the issue of climate change, I found two interesting reads this morning in the New York Times.  The first is about the conference itself, particularly the cries from the far right about the possibilities of dire economic consequences if we actually take steps to address the issue.  Really?  I was in Germany last week, which is cloudy like Seattle, and farther north, and yet while traveling by train I passed dozens of solar farms, acres of solar panels … [Read more...]

Reflections on first leg of the trip…

In a few minutes I'll go to class and complete the studies in Genesis with students here, and then board the train for Augsburg, where I'll spend the evening with friends before filming tomorrow at Dachau and sites in Munich.  Tomorrow night it's on to Salzburg for supper with a friend and then Schladming, where I'll be teaching I Corinthians next week.The week here has been good with many students from Canada, a few from America, and the rest from places in Europe, Africa, and one student … [Read more...]