Climbing Kilimanjaro step by step – Lessons for America from Africa

In about 11 hours our team from Seattle will board a flight that will take us (eventually, by the 5th airport) to Seattle, and we'll be home, our exploratory trip of this region completed.  We came here in order to meet some people who are doing marvelous development work and to visit the sites of wells our church has funded, some of them completed already, and one just getting started on the day we arrived in Uganda.We encountered so much in the previous 8 days that it seems like a lifetime … [Read more...]

First Resolution: five options for five minutes of prayer

Life, it seems, is coming at us faster than ever.  Longer hours at work, more stress, commutes, repairs, exercise, relationships, and endless social connections that encourage us to remain linked in, with updated status reports and timeless tweets - add it all up and life can feel like a video game.  It's coming at you and you're reacting.  Reacting, though, is much different than living.  When I'm reacting, I end up preaching because I'm expected to say something, rather than because I've som … [Read more...]

3 Snapshots reveal: “The Value of Showing Up”

In the past three weeks, I've been reminded often that one of the greatest things we can do to make our lives meaningful and significant is to just keep showing up.  I was privileged to be in Germany when a good friend, Peter Reid, was celebrating his 50th birthday party.  About 10 of us gathered around a big table, beginning at 4:30 in the afternoon, with conversation continuing until well after midnight  (I love European parties, which consist, so often, of just food, drink, and excellent wide … [Read more...]

Holy Wholeness…a great vision for the life of faith

In the biography I'm reading just now over here in Austria, I'm struck by how timeless Bonhoeffer's vision for the church is.  We read, "he felt that what was especially mission from the life of Christians in Germany was the day to day reality of dying to self, of following Christ with ounce of one's being in every moment, in every part of one's life.  This dedication and fire existed among pietist groups...but he thought they they bordered on being 'works' oriented and overly 'religious'.  They … [Read more...]

REAL freedom

One of the joys that comes from teaching in an international Bible school is that one disocvers how, in spite of our boundaries, ethnic differences, and distinctions in health care policies, the human heart is unchanging.  It's issues cross the barriers of culture, race, politic, economy, space, and time.  Students are here from all over Europe, Canada, and America, along with some from Asia and at least one student from Africa and all of them are made for the same thing: freedom!Thee gospel c … [Read more...]


I'm enjoying reading the biography of a favorite Christian: Dietrich Bonhoeffer, while I'm over here in Germany.  He was a German pastor, ultimately arrested and executed because of his overt and covert involvement in the resistance movement. I love reading about German history while I'm over here because this history still bleeds into day to day conversations.  I learned today that the dorm for a local school here once housed Nazi youth, and that the Art Center I visited was leveled by Nazis a … [Read more...]


"How is it that you, being a Jew, ask me for a drink since I am a Samaritan woman?"  (For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans) - John 4:9One of the things that offended the religious establishment in Jesus' day was the fact that Jesus crossed social barriers.  He did it all the time:  touching lepers, partying with "sinners" (a hysterical categorization that reveals the self righteousness of the religious crowd), and then of course there's the case of the Samaritan woman.  She's thrice an out … [Read more...]

Yoga…The Christian Om’s dilemma

Here's the article that got the ball rolling.  Pastors are chiming in all over the web, so there's a sense in which I'm not sure I could add anything to the discussion.  On the other hand, it appears to me that some critical pieces are missing from the discussion, so here are what I consider to be some critical observations:1. The Christian life is about Jesus Christ.  It begins with Him, invites us to live in Him, and will move history towards a time when His full reign will saturate the un … [Read more...]