The Stranger in Our Midst

The Stranger in Our Midst

Virtually every church I know, if asked to describe itself, would use words like friendly, caring and welcoming. Not every new person who comes their way would use those same words. While churches are not hostile to newcomers, many of them are unaware of the coolness...
The Ministry of Words

The Ministry of Words

I stood in a hospital room crowded with family members of one who, without a single word, had summoned us all together. She was ready, after almost 94 years, to leave this life. So that is what she did. She left a hushed silence unable to muffle the emotion of time...
Why I Love the Church

Why I Love the Church

My mother-in-law died twenty-five years ago.  One of my wife’s brothers, also a pastor, preached the eulogy.  His title for his message was, “How the Church Saved My Family.”  In it he described his mother’s home life as a child.  He held nothing back as he explained...
The Power of Shared Story

The Power of Shared Story

So the other day I got a notification on Facebook that said “Larry has tagged a photo of you.”  Larry was my date to my senior prom.  He was a good friend from my church youth group who went to another high school.  Plus – he had a GREAT car.  A brand new anniversary...

More Wednesdays, Fewer Thursdays

How quickly our conversations can go from theoretical to all-too-real. On Wednesday, I spent a rewarding day in Tennessee on a retreat with 45 ministers and staff members thinking through the unique and profound pressures of ministry in the 21st century. We agreed...