Oct 19, 2014

Do You Remember Your Baptism?

Romans 6:4
Her name was Krystal. Yes, with a K . She was ten and had asked Jesus to come into her heart the way most ten year olds do, with simple childlike trust. I told her a good next step was to follow Jesus’ example and be baptized. Krystal said okay...Read more +
Oct 18, 2014

Menu Planning

Matthew 6:26
On Mondays, I plan the week’s meals. At the kitchen island with laptop, notebook, and pen I tick through a week of food blogs, scribble down notes, half-inspirations, check the calendar for people coming over or us heading out of town. Meal planning was habituated first out of the necessity...Read more +
Oct 17, 2014

Worship With Transparent Windows

Psalm 117:1-2
One of the greatest challenges and joys of my life was leading a church during the building of a sanctuary, the space many would now call a “ worship center .” When I began my tenure as pastor of Irvine Presbyterian Church, the first major item on my plate was...Read more +
Oct 16, 2014

Sing to the Lord!

Ephesians 5:18-19
I grew up singing lots of wonderful songs in church, Sunday School, and youth group: “Jesus loves me, this I know … Deep and wide, deep and wide … Trust and obey, for there’s no other way … On a hill far away, stood an old rugged cross … The...Read more +
Oct 15, 2014

You Have a Hard Time Praying, Don’t You?

Ephesians 5:18-19
About twenty-five years ago, I had lunch with Henri Nouwen. If you’re not familiar with this name, he was a spiritual writer who influenced millions upon millions of Christians to grow in our relationship with God. He was truly one of my heroes of the faith. The occasion of our...Read more +
Oct 14, 2014

Why the Worship Wars Never Should Have...

Ephesians 5:18-19
I believe that the infamous “worship wars” never should have happened. Which wars are these? If you study church history, you’ll discover that we Christians have been fighting over worship for centuries, bless our hearts. But I’m thinking specifically of the so-called “worship wars” that erupted in the 1970s and...Read more +
Oct 13, 2014

How Can We Speak to Each Other With Songs...

Ephesians 5:18-19
At first glance, Ephesians 5:19 seems to be confusing, if not just plain confused. According to this verse, we are to be filled with the Spirit, “speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit.” The verse goes on to say that we should also “sing and...Read more +
Oct 12, 2014

God Will

Colossians 1:16-17
We spend a lot of words on intentionality these days. We seek intention in all we do—a gesture, I think, toward interpreting by lived performance the Scripture about all our words and deeds being hid in the purposes of Jesus. But we do ourselves a disservice in these conversations. With...Read more +
Oct 11, 2014

Pursuing God into a Homeless Shelter

Luke 18:18-22
The cafeteria was mostly dark. A few dim lights kept me from stepping on homeless men sleeping in orderly rows on the floor. One old man with a Santa Clause beard snored loudly in the corner. Nearby, a “man” in his late teens or early twenties muttered something unintelligible in...Read more +
Oct 10, 2014

A Sacrifice of Thanksgiving

Psalm 116:1-19
Psalm 116 celebrates God’s goodness. The psalmist has experienced God’s grace in manifold expressions. God has heard his prayers (116:1). God delivered him from death (116:3-6), guided his steps (116:8-9), and freed him from chains (116:16). Therefore, the psalmist loves the Lord and offers him praise (116:1,19). Moreover, he proclaims...Read more +

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