Unlocking Potential by Practicing Presence

Everything can be taken from a man or a woman but one thing: the last of human freedoms to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one's own way. - Victor FranklDo you ever wish you were somewhere else?  Of course you do! You wish you were on the other side of that right light which is holding you back from where you want to be.  You wish you were at a job that pays more, or is energizing rather than mind numbing.  You wish you were with a spouse that is harder wo … [Read more...]

Imagine: The Importance of Envisioning a Different World….

The authors of "Colossians Remixed" write:  If with Christ you died in your baptism to the principles of autonomous consumerism that still hold the world captive, then why do you live in a way that suggests that you are still in the iron grip of its ideological vision?  Why do you submit yourself to its regulations to consume as if there were no tomorrow, to live as if community were an impediment to personal fulfillment, to live as if everything were disposable, including relationships, the u … [Read more...]

Summits, Self-Denial, Discipleship – a symboiotic trinity

the vision of summit is the fuel for self-denial

One climbs, one sees.  One descends, one sees no longer.  But one has seen.  There is an art of conducting oneself in the lower regions by the memory of what one saw higher up – Rene DumalI’m on the plane, having left a week of wonderful teaching and fellowship in Southern California as I return, refreshed and sun drenched, to the wonderful work I’ve the privilege of doing in Seattle.  The work, as most of you know, is the work of shepherding the flock – and as I finish my sermon on th … [Read more...]

The empire has no clothes. The King has colors of hope

In my last post I wrote: Until I’m willing to see both the idolatry and insufficiency of the present “McWorld” system, I’ll also fail to see the radically hopeful nature of the gospel, which provides an exit strategy from these false hopes as it invites us into so much more than a ticket to heaven.Assuming that I do see the insufficiency of the present worldview (no matter who's in power), only clears the deck of false hopes.  It deconstructs.  It exposes.  And, if left alone, creates a g … [Read more...]

The Empire Has No Clothes – raw truth precedes real hope – Part One

The losses and damages characteristic of our present economy cannot be stopped, let alone restored, by “liberal” or “conservative” tweakings of corporate industrialism, against which the ancient imperatives of good care, homemaking, and frugality can have no standing. - Wendell BerryNow that Mitt Romney has effectively vanquished all other contenders, the real election posturing can begin, and we all know it won't be pretty.  More importantly though, we also know it won't be true, or at th … [Read more...]

Love Ingredients: Truth, Grace, Proportion

"full of grace and truth" John 1:14"Who can pull that off?" is the question I ask with all the urgency I can muster because I'm more convinced than ever that this is perhaps the only possible solid foundation upon which genuine intimacy can be built.  Look at any relationship where love continues to ripen and deepen, year after year, and you'll find that the couple has managed to express both truth and grace.  But there's more.  The couple has also found a way express these elements at the r … [Read more...]

Hope for the New Year: Let’s get beyond “NO”

If history tells us one thing, it's that humans are good at saying NO to systems that don't work.  If our species were a single body, we'd have an excellent immune system.  When oppressive regimes arise, it's only a matter of time until they collapse.  The weight of their own corruption weakens them until an uprising from the masses leads to regime change.  The toppling of empires is nearly always welcomed with fanfare.  We like burning flags, and effigies, and toppling statues.  There's usually … [Read more...]

On Bringing Children into the World: Two Views

Is this a good time for children to be born?

“I would not want to bring a child into this world” she said gently, yet emphatically enough to leave no uncertainty about her conviction.  She was a student, travelling from her hometown of Ulm to Ravensberg, where she is studying to be an elementary school teacher.  Her eagerness to practice English, coupled with our mutual curiosity of each other’s cultures created the recipe for a good long conversation.  The train wound it’s way through southern Germany, from east to west, as we spoke of edu … [Read more...]


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