Another Look: Fear Not, Little Flock

Another Look: Fear Not, Little Flock From 2011 • • • Last Sunday, my wife and I entered the side door of the old church building. The small entryway had a few steps that led up to two vintage oak doors. The one on the left led to the back corner of the sanctuary. NextContinue reading “Another Look: Fear Not, Little Flock”

Monday with Michael Spencer: They Bought Me, And I’m Glad

Monday with Michael Spencer They Bought Me, And I’m Glad (excerpt, 2008) • • • There is one aspect of ordination I appreciate on a very personal level. When a congregation ordains you, they are setting you aside to serve them, yes. But they are also saying, “He belongs to us. We bought him, andContinue reading “Monday with Michael Spencer: They Bought Me, And I’m Glad”

Sunday with Walter Brueggemann: We are not self-invented folks

Sunday with Walter Brueggemann We are not self-invented folks There is a mistaken notion that we are self-starters, individuals who “possess” capacity and worth. And we can make do and can do, if we try harder. Such a view belongs to American notions of success and progress. But it really doesn’t work. We cannot makeContinue reading “Sunday with Walter Brueggemann: We are not self-invented folks”

Random Thoughts from a Black Pouring

I am a Jackson Pollock painting these days. Life and death have been splashing all over me and the result is an indecipherable hodgepodge of an inner landscape. To be honest, I love Pollock’s work and a lot of other artists who painted in the form of Abstract Expressionism. This art reminds us that theContinue reading “Random Thoughts from a Black Pouring”

“Begin with fear of death”

If not with hope of life, Begin with fear of death: Strive the tremendous life-long strife Breath after breath. • Christina Rossetti • • • But…I’m afraid An excerpt from Walking Home Together: Spiritual Guidance and Practical Advice For The End Of Life [As you consider your final walk home,] I’m sure you have someContinue reading ““Begin with fear of death””

Saturday with Michael Spencer: The Things that Won’t Go Away

Saturday with Michael Spencer The Things that Won’t Go Away They’re back. My sins, that is. Just in case you need to know, my name is Michael Spencer. I’m a Christian minister who has given 33+ years of my life to telling people… My sins, O the bliss of this glorious thought My sins notContinue reading “Saturday with Michael Spencer: The Things that Won’t Go Away”

April Fools on Me: That Insidious Root Sin

April Fools on Me: That Insidious Root Sin Even authentic outrage is influenced by implicit strategic calculations. • Jillian Jordan & David Rand • • • Two psychologists have written an article at the New York Times about Virtue Signaling, a phrase used to counter some of the expressions of moral outrage that are soContinue reading “April Fools on Me: That Insidious Root Sin”

Wednesday with Michael Spencer: What’s Growing in the Shadow of Anger?

Wednesday with Michael Spencer What’s Growing in the Shadow of Anger? Sometimes someone else’s sins become the light of seeing our own. Several years ago I was working with a particularly difficult young church staff member. His pattern was to do everything his way, and when negative consequences arrived, to be completely defensive. Insight intoContinue reading “Wednesday with Michael Spencer: What’s Growing in the Shadow of Anger?”

Lisa Dye: What Happened to My Big Life?

What Happened to My Big Life? by Lisa Dye The seed of the Kingdom, however tiny, however invisible or insignificant, is always growing, thanks to God’s tireless activity … He makes our efforts bear fruit beyond all calculations of productivity. • Pope Francis Recently, I listened to a woman named Esther Perel describe her childhoodContinue reading “Lisa Dye: What Happened to My Big Life?”

Damaris Zehner: Privilege

Privilege By Damaris Zehner I was an obnoxious twelve-year-old, which should come as no surprise. As a student at St. Mary’s in Waverly, Johannesburg, I complained about school a lot. When I got home, my uniform would be thrown on the floor, where it would generally stay until I shook it out and put itContinue reading “Damaris Zehner: Privilege”