MainStreet Beginnings, Intro

Here’s the introduction to “MainStreet Beginnings” book as we mark our 7th anniversary. Read more about the project here. Contact me if you’re interested in getting a copy.  INTRODUCTION: A Hometown Apostle I was an unlikely choice—but then that sort of makes me a more likely choice in God’s eyes. He loves surprises and unlikely heroes….

Through the Fog (2011)

MainStreet was a long, slow launch. We were one of the last “pioneer” plants to get the green light. That is, we didn’t have a parent or partner church when we were approved by the Northwest Conference to begin gathering a Launch Team. Thank God, Excelsior Covenant soon came alongside us to give us a…

NEW! MainStreet Beginnings Book

Today marks the 7th anniversary of MainStreet Covenant Church’s first weekly worship service. I thought this an appropriate occasion to announce the completion of a commemorative book I’ve produced that details the journey. As you probably know, I love history, and therefore I love probing origins. Any appreciator of the past quickly becomes an appreciator…

Christmas at Alcatraz

The escape attempts from Alcatraz were thwarted every time as the fugitives were swallowed up in the frozen waters of the San Francisco Bay. The scandal of Christmas is that God does not leave sin-stained humanity stranded on an island or demand we swim through icy waters for our freedom. It celebrates God’s swim across the cold waters in order to secure our freedom.

Funding the Jericho Inn: A MainStreet Update

Jesus’ mission prioritized the marginalized and neglected people of his day. He didn’t send out his apostles—i.e., “church planters”—saying, “Go ye therefore to the sprawling suburbs and invite the upwardly mobile dual income families with children.” He said, “Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind and the lame” (Luke 14:21). Would you try growing a church with such folks?

David Johnson: 38 Years of Divine Electricity

The bleachers squeaked like crazy. It smelled like a locker room. It got hot and stuffy on Saturday nights in the summer. We were packed in like sardines as upbeat guitars and the 90s choruses of “Trading My Sorrows” and “Shout to the Lord” echoed throughout the Robbinsdale High School gymnasium. As the last song…

Prayers & Tears at the Poll

I went to the polls on Election Day to cast votes, and ended up casting non-partisan prayers for all the candidates. As I stood over that ballot with pen in hand, looking at all the names and offices, tears dropped down indiscriminately on the ovals below. I turned that little space into a prayer closet…

The FULL Serenity Prayer

My pastoral counselor prescribed for me the daily practice of praying the famous Serenity Prayer for the next couple weeks. I’m not struggling with addiction or substance abuse, and I haven’t joined an AA group, but this prayer has much broader application for many other personal afflictions. I discovered two new things as I accepted…