I just wanted to take a quick moment to say thank you to you, my dear readers and friends, for your support over the past year. Regular readers of the blog know that this has been a tough year but, through it all, God has been faithful and provided comfort through friends far and near. And in the midst of the darkest times, I've tried to seek Him more — to know more fully what His will is so I can better align my life and my actions with it. It doesn't take long to figure out that it's a [……]Continue reading →
The Benefit of Doubt
Doubt is an uncomfortable condition,
but certainty is a ridiculous one.
There lives more faith in honest doubt,
believe me, than in half the creeds.
Alfred Lord Tennyson
I heard someone talking about doubt the other day and it set my brain into motion thinking about it. We often think of doubt as a negative thing — revealing our lack of faith, showing a character flaw, or ripping the veil from a deep-seated hopelessness that we tend to hide under a false bravado. And while those things may be true to various extents, they certainly don't tell the whole story.
I believe [……]Continue reading →
We all have two lives.
The second one begins when you
realize you only have one.
Even if the rain won't stop
Even when I'm falling down, down, down
I'll hold my head up high
Drink the rain and learn to fly away
Lauren Black — "Drink The Rain"
The tension is here
Between who you are and who you could be
Between how it is and how it should be
Switchfoot — "Dare You To Move"
It's fitting on this Thanksgiving Day that God has been hitting me hard on two things.
The first, as I've mentioned in the past is [……]Continue reading →
Wishing on a star
All those times we looked up at the sky
Looking out so far, it felt like we could fly
Grace Potter — "Stars"
I was out walking my dog last night and it was so beautiful and clear out that the night sky was just filled with stars. More stars than are usually visible were shining all around and that never fails to make me pause and drink it in. It reminded me of when i used to run back in college. I would take off from in front of my dorm and head through the downtown of the small rural [……]Continue reading →
Moving past the past
When did I become an idiot? I didn't use to be an idiot. I used to actually be rather smart (former Mensa member) and I had some real common sense. Now, however, that all seems to have left me to the point that some days it feels like I don't even know how to tie my own shoes. OK, not really — that's hyperbole but, truthfully, I sometimes find myself face to face with things that seem like they should be so obvious but that I simply haven't been able to get out of my own idiot way enough to [……]Continue reading →
Getting past the "They"
I've been thinking a lot recently about the concept of "they" and this habit we have of lumping people into groups. We're so good at doing that. We automatically separate everyone into various groups and slap labels on them so we can refer to them as some aggregate entity. I get why we do it. It's easier to deal with people that way. We don't get bogged down in all of the details that don't matter to whatever the topic of the day is. It's much easier to say "They said this" and "They want to do that."
It's such a [……]Continue reading →
God is Doin' a Nu Thang
Every new beginning comes from
some other beginning's end.
Semisonic — "Closing time"
As several people who I care about are going through transitions of some sort right now, I'm reminded that God is a God of new beginnings. Throughout the Bible, we see examples of God bringing people into a fuller knowledge of Him — and using them in powerful new ways — by leading them into a totally different lives that they never imagined. In the cases of Abram, Jacob, Saul and Simon this was marked by a change of name as well to make it even more evident [……]Continue reading →
Jesus is for Losers
I once heard someone ask, "If Jesus walked into your church, would he like what he found there?" The speaker was making the point that we tend to place so much meaningless emphasis on things that don't matter a hill of beans in the long run and I can't say that I disagreed with him. But through the years, I have come to believe that if Jesus came to Earth, he wouldn't walk into any church. Based on the examples shown in the Bible, I believe he would probably go hang out where the homeless folks congregate or go talk [……]Continue reading →
Christianity is a messy business
Becoming a Christian is easy. Living like a Christian is easy. Doing the things a Christian is supposed to do is easy. But actually being a Christian is pretty hard. OK - not really "hard" as in "difficult" but rather "hard" as in "it takes actual work." It requires you to do things that a lot of people — even well-meaning Christians - just aren't comfortable doing. And that's been the case for me for the majority of my life.
For so, so many years I’ve tried to do the right things and read the right things and know the right [……]Continue reading →
The announcement was made recently at church that our pastor, James, was going to be leaving us. This was not due to any problems in the church nor was it requested by him. In fact, he has turned this offer down twice already. The church simply has need of his leadership talents elsewhere. Such is the nature of an itinerate system.
In thinking about this, I looked back at the relatively short history of our church. The founding pastor, Bob - a man with a calling to plant churches and the talents and charisma to get it done - got things [……]Continue reading →