Going Green 6: Nomadic Gardening?

Have you ever met a traveling salesperson who refuses to leave the office? Have you ever met a daycare provider who can’t stand kids? How about an illiterate librarian? These are oxymorons and contradictions. I worked on the grounds crew at a golf course in high school. I spent most of my summer cutting grass. I loved…

10 Turning Point Lessons for Church Leaders (by Pete Scazzero)

From Pete Scazzero: Character is more important than gifting. Being is more important than doing. When we have overlooked issues of character because of anointing, effectiveness, or natural abilities, we have always paid a price. Do not rush. When decisions were made quickly, without pausing to pray, think and process implications, we always experienced regrets. Seeing the Promised Land without carefully…

Pastor as Spiritual Midwife

A few years back I had to write a paper exploring an image or metaphor that describes my personal vision for pastoral ministry. Here’s what I wrote. (Note: Keri was pregnant with Abby at the time). “My dear children, for whom I am again in the pains of childbirth until Christ is formed in you…” Gal. 4:19…

The Perils of Preaching Today

“We come to the Bible, raising questions about its relevance to our present daily lives, only to find that the Bible questions us about our relevance to the way of Christ.” -Will Willimon We’re modern people. We value efficiency and practicality.  We like quick how-to tutorials that immediately get to the point. We’re self-driven, ambitious…

Leadership Axioms for Healthy Congregations

Here are some foundational leadership principles passed on to me related to ongoing congregational health and mission. How have these manifested themselves in your personal ministry? In your lay leaders? In your congregation? Leadership definition:  “Leadership is the process by which a man or a woman, guided by the Holy Spirit, influences a group of…

Lucky: The Tale of Eutychus

Enjoy an imaginative first person narrative sermon I wrote about the strange story of Eutychus in Acts 20:7-12. I remember it was early spring and unseasonably warm. It was just after Passover. I can still smell the warm, salted breeze coming off the Aegean sea, and hear the squalk of seagulls circling above. We stood on the…

SERMON: Church Road Trip

I preached this sermon in the summer of 2012 to rally the congregation of  to make a deeper commitment to MainStreet and invest financially in our building campaign to move into our own space at Stonegate Plaza.  A ROAD TRIP TO REMEMBER It was spring break of 1998—my senior year of high school. Several of my…

Hope for Moody Pastors (Mark 3:3-6)

One reason I resisted being a “pastor” for so long was all the stereotypes I had in my head for what pastors are supposed to be like. My image always looked something like Mr. Rogers in a sweater and khakis. Warm, personable, emotionally steady, gentle and never, EVER moody. I don’t know where I picked…