Writing Your Dreams in Ink

It was our first Christmas together. You knew it was serious because we would be spending Christmas with each other’s families for the first time. Dun-dun-dun. Do you remember the pressure from all the “firsts” in those early days of dating? First date. First embrace. First time your hands touch. First lingering goodbye at the door or in…

Imagine a World: Treasure Seekers (Matt 13:44-46)

We gathered at the beach for our annual baptism service and potluck. Always a highlight to preach in the open air with the lapping waves and morning breeze coming off of Lake Minnetonka. I resisted making mention (this time!) that just a few hundred yards down the shoreline Bill Bright housed the Campus Crusade headquarters…

Teaching & Interpersonal Relationships

Matt Friedeman’s book The Master Plan of Teaching (1990) examines Jesus’ teaching style and suggests the following formula emphasizing that content alone is not enough, but the teacher-student relationship is a central ingredient: COMMUNICATION = CONTENT + RELATIONSHIP He then offers some steps toward effective interpersonal relationships in the graph below. Pastors and teachers who want to…

Total Eclipse of the Son

  “Why do you stand here looking into the sky?” Acts 1:10 Yesterday was the highly anticipated Total Eclipse across the United States, and many found themselves staring up into the sky expecting to be dazzled. Millions of people interrupted their normal routines, stepped out of their places of work, and looked up at the sky….

Jesus’ Call to Discipleship

Just skimmed a little book by the great NT scholar, James Dunn, on Jesus’ Call to Discipleship (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1992). If you’ve ever wanted a short, concise summary of the heart of Jesus’ radical teaching and summons to discipleship, here’s a great summary from pp. 121-122: 1) It begins from God and…

Ekklesia: A Radical Social Experiment

My heart breaks for our country and world today. Racial inequality, deep seated mistrust, increasing violence and boiling hatred fill our headlines daily. I write this in the aftermath of the horrific white nationalist rally and car crash in Charlottesville. Followers of Jesus must denounce such evils clearly and in the strongest terms. (Read  statement from…

Happy 42nd Anniversary, Mom & Dad!

She was 16 years old, and for some reason attending a dance at the Technical College in her hometown. He was about 20, and for some reason flirting with a high school girl. (It was the 70s after all – people did a lot of “iffy” things.) He asked her to dance. She said yes….

God’s Masterpiece

“For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago” (Ephesians 2:10). If I were called to the hospital bedside of a person who just attempted but failed to take their own life, I think I would bring this…