No One Gets to be “Right” About EVERYTHING!


Disclaimer: This is not a “teaching”. This is an “opinion”. Yeah…a “rant”, if you like. But it’s offered in love.

God, being a “relational” entity, created us so that we need one another. As I read believers’ blogs these days, I’m struck by the variations in style, doctrine, authoritative “voice” and expression of humility. Some bloggers just write to share their thoughts.  Others demonstrate a divine teaching gift that is clearly sourced in the Spirit. Still others, seemingly, write from a position of  belief that they have all the right answers—and they are appointed to set everyone else straight! [Read more…]

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Movements That Change the World: Five Keys to Spreading the Gospel by Steve Addison (A Book Review)


While this book has been around awhile (orig. publication 2009, revised 2011), it should remain “timely” for quite some time to come for anyone interested in the church as a “missionary movement”. Steve Addison has packed this very quick read with a lot of descriptive history of movements that were successful in spreading the gospel. [It’s a good thing this book does read quickly—I found it very hard to put it down.] He aptly distinguishes the movements that succeeded beyond merely spreading the gospel and bore fruit for successive generations by “making disciples”. [Read more…]

Viral: How Social Networking Is Poised to Ignite Revival by Leonard Sweet (A Book Review)


Only a few pages into this book, the thought struck: Leonard Sweet is a Renaissance Man for this generation! His breathtaking mastery of multi-disciplinary knowledge, powers of observation, and analytical skill in assessing the traits, tendencies and trends of this culture have been brought to bear in this newly released volume. Sweet has done his research and waded deeply into the waters of change—a “Gutenberger” immigrating from a tribe of Enlightenment-influenced navel-gazers into a country populated by relational, tech-savvy “Googlers”. [Read more…]

The Significance of the Cup


photo by hoyasmeg via PhotoRee

In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you. __Luke 22:20 (NIV)

On the eve of the Passover feast, Christ, the Lamb of God, shared a last supper with His disciples. One of them would betray Him. Before dawn, the others would desert Him and one of them—Peter, the Rock—would deny Him. [Read more…]

“I Am A Follower: The Way, Truth and Life of Following Jesus” by Leonard Sweet (A Book Review)


To abandon all, to strip one’s self of all, in order to seek and follow Jesus Christ naked to Bethlehem where He was born, naked to the hall where He was scourged, and naked to Calvary where He died on the cross, is so great a mystery that neither the thing nor the knowledge of it, is given to any but through faith in the Son of God. __John Wesley

For more than half a century I’ve lived in a “church culture”.  For the first four decades it was a Methodist culture that, before my eyes, seemed to fulfill Wesley’s foreboding:

I am not afraid that the people called Methodists should ever cease to exist either in Europe or America. But I am afraid lest they should only exist as a dead sect, having the form of religion without the power. And this undoubtedly will be the case unless they hold fast both the doctrine, spirit, and discipline with which they first set out. __John Wesley

Where did all the power go—not just in the Methodists—but in the entire Protestant church in the West? The power is only available to those who follow Christ, even to Calvary. The power belongs to those who “die” and rise with Christ to walk in New Covenant resurrection life, spreading a New Covenant Kingdom! I’m convinced the Western Church has lost its power because it’s following the wrong leaders, cluttered with errant Old Testament (and wrongly interpreted New Covenant) teachings, splintered into too many factions—each of which is focused more on self-preservation than on the Lord Jesus Christ. [Read more…]

Are You Being Prepared to Burn for Something Good?


photo by RobW_ via PhotoRee

When I was in my teens, I was what might be called a “Jesus Freak”. I loved to  read my Bible and talk to other teens about the Lord. I wanted all my friends to have the joy Christ had given me. I read the Book of Acts and yearned to see the Gospel being lived out in the world around me like those early Christians lived it. I saw so many things in the modern church that didn’t seem to fit what I saw in the New Testament. [Read more…]

Easter From the Backside: A Book Review


First published as a Facebook Note on Friday, February 8, 2011, this seems like a timely review to open my new blog…just in time for Easter!

It approaches—the moment for which my soul yearned through the dark time of winter! It approaches—the day that returns annually to mark the most important event in the history of humanity! And with its approach, the Spirit would have us grasp with finality and victory the indisputable fact that the Day we herald is not a mere Day, but the very portal of ETERNITY! It is NOT coming…it has ARRIVED! Finally, I know, it has been MY day, all along! [Read more…]

“Jacked Up”


I encourage you to read about the October Synchroblog theme “Down We Go” by clicking this link  before continuing to read this post.  Please explore the links to other bloggers participating in the October Synchroblog (at the bottom of this post).  Those links will allow you to “listen in”,  follow and comment on the “cyber-conversation” as other bloggers participate in writing about this month’s topic. The October challenge seems like a gigantic, multi-tiered party cake! Who knows what’s under the icing? If we take one slice at a time we’ll surely taste something of the Lord Jesus Christ in each writer’s portion.

photo by prpmbd1050 via PhotoRee

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Masquerade! Hide your face, so the world will never find you!” (Lyrics from Phantom of the Opera)

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It didn’t start in the age of  Dear Abby and Ann Landers.  Of course we want to think Dr. Ruth or Dr. Phil can somehow silence that “inner voice” which tells us there’s something wrong with us and we need to “get our act together” before everyone finds out.  I suspect it all started long before advice columnists in newspapers…before newspapers…before the printing press…just…”before”.  Perhaps it started with two naked people and some fig leaves—two people who were silly enough to think God would never find them?  Wherever it started , “it” is definitely there.  Yes…it must have started long, long ago.  I think Jesus may have been commenting on our “advice columnist” mentality with that remark about getting the beam out of my own eye before I presume to help you with the speck in yours. The knowledge that we lack “put togetherness” is behind the invention of masks and advice columns, you know. “Truth”. (High Five…or whatever cool people do…Amen?) [Read more…]

How Low Can We Go?


This post is part of the October Syncrhoblog “Down We Go” .  Please check the Synchroblog link for an explanation. 

When Mary Tudor ascended the throne of England, the monarchy reverted to the Roman Catholic faith. John Bradford was one of the Reformers imprisoned in the Tower of London for his faithfulness to the Church of England.  Seeing some fellow-prisoners marched off to their execution, Bradford is said to have observed “There, but for the grace of God, goes John Bradford.”

Bradford himself soon joined the ranks of the martyred in the Reformation narrative.  Though some have doubted the attribution of the saying, There but for the grace of God go I lives on in the English language as a pious cliche warning against viewing the less fortunate, the fallen, the needy, and the weak with pitiless contempt. [Read more…]

Like Living Stones


As you come to him, the living Stone—rejected by humans but chosen by God and precious to him—you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. __1 Peter 2:4-5 NIV

Why, after nearly 2000 years, don’t more people who profess to follow Christ look more like Christ? Could it be because church-as-they-know-it has failed to teach them how Jesus sees the Church-as-He-builds-it?
[Read more…]