Evaluating Church

Some follow up thoughts from yesterday’s sermon. In evaluating the spiritual health and vitality of a church, here is something to consider: Is it a place where honesty in personal truth-telling is encouraged or discouraged?  Are people wearing masks, afraid to let their real selves be known?  Is some version of “The Emperor’s New Clothes” being […]


Sunday morning prayer

Sunday morning. It is raining outside; still dark. I am still waking up, coffee in hand to assist. I know what I want to talk about this morning; just not quite sure how to say it. Need to focus. Remember to pray. God who created me, God who awoke me this morning and would have […]


Wondering who’s out there

I missed blogging yesterday because I was away on a quick trip with my family to surprise my father in North Carolina on his 85th birthday. It was a visit of great tenderness. Coming back to my blogging, I am aware of myself wondering just who might be out there reading the words I have […]


Jesus Camp

A peculiar convergence of thoughts and events: First the thoughts. This past Sunday my sermon included my thoughts about the Christian life and children, inspired partly by the Gospel lesson and partly by the fact that we had two little ones being baptized.  I noted then that there is no instance in the Gospels where […]


Nearly Drowning

Having been blogging now for over a week, the challenge of finding things to write about begins to emerge. Last week I wrote about some of the rhythms of an ordinary week in my present life. One solution to the problem of finding writing themes is to delve into the past. People who have listened […]


Measuring the Soul

I think the best measurement available to us of the dimensions of the human soul is found in our capacity to hold other persons inside our heart. By holding other persons I mean being able to truly care about them; to feel for them in their struggles and rejoice with them in their joys.  Sharing […]


Remembering Sunday

At the end of a Sunday, there is always a sense of my mind being fried. So much taken in, so much put out. Sunday mornings are adrenalin rushes. A lot gets packed into a couple hours. It is good this morning to take time and remember what took place yesterday, lest it all get […]


Animation, by John Bidwell

Animation Flash! The coalescence of the gas When time was born so things could come to pass, A blinding light as all that was would grow Until the forms it took could even know. From this came life, each moment giving birth The seeds of which once rained upon the earth Absorbing sunlight changing what’s […]


Screeching Computers

The old computer I usually work on is screeching like a cat. The fan that keeps it from overheating has given up the ghost. My sermon notes are on it and I’m not sure it will give them up. (I am typing this on the other computer in the house.) Fortunately, my sermon is mostly […]


Saturdays for a preacher

Saturdays feel different to me than other people.  For most people it is the day after the work week, to do with what you will, whether that be household chores you haven’t gotten to all week or leisure activities.  For me, Saturday is the day I must make major progress in the process of preparing […]