Monthly Archives: December 2010

See You on January 2nd!

I’m taking the week off from daily blogging, to spend time with family and friends. On January 2nd, we launch the new site for 2011. Next Sunday, you’ll find “The Holy Gospel” awaiting your read.  Tuesdays will find us exploring … Continue reading

Posted in Site Updates

Connections: To The One

There’s only one connection that ultimately matters:  our connection to Christ. May you and yours find yourselves increasingly connected to him. Have a blessed Christmas!

Posted in Connections | 1 Comment

The Holy Gospel: December 26, 2010 (Year A)

Read:  Matthew 2:13-23 Meditation:  “How The World Celebrates Christmas” I’ve never seen a Christmas pageant that includes this week’s lesson.  They all end with the departure of the wise men.  We want to end with hallelujahs—“joy to the world, the Lord is come.”  … Continue reading

Posted in The Holy Gospel

Ponderings: Real Presents

The real presents are not those under the tree, but those who gather around it.

Posted in Uncategorized

Shepherd’s Care: Purpose

We conclude our look at Mark 1:17 with one final element:  purpose.  Jesus stated the purpose of apostolic ministry: “to fish for people.”  Over the years, I have enjoyed talking about ministry as a fishing expedition.  I am not a … Continue reading

Posted in Shepherd's Care

Gleanings: Our Greatest Need

Recently, I came across this quotation from Max Lucado in his book When God Whispers Your Name.  I believe you’ll find it appropriate for this week….. If your greatest need had been information, God would have sent an educator.  If … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized

Listenings: Jesus

Everything that the Bible wants to say about the forgiveness of sin and our ensuing redemption is summed up in one word:  Jesus.  This is not a simplistic one-word answer; it is a profound theological statement.  It comes to us … Continue reading

Posted in Listenings

Connections: Alive Now

We conclude our current look at “artistic” spirituality.  I’m sure we’ll return to it as we continue the journey. I want to connect you with a source that kind of “pulls it all together”—Alive Now, a bi-monthly publication of The … Continue reading

Posted in Connections

The Holy Gospel: December 19, 2010 (Year A)

Read:  Matthew 1:18-25 Meditation:  “Thank God for Joseph” The Christian story would have taken a different turn if Joseph had walked out on Mary.  Jesus’ life in Nazareth would have been different if Joseph had left Mary to raise Jesus … Continue reading

Posted in The Holy Gospel | 1 Comment

Ponderings: Matters of the Heart

We have a place in our being where we store our precious memories, where we activate our deepest values, and where we make our major decisions.  We call it our “heart.” Amazingly, we can get there in a split second.  … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized

Shepherd’s Care: Process

Two times in Mark 1:17 Jesus emphasizes that there is a process to the matter of becoming disciples.  Nearly every English translation has the phrase, “and I will make you”–clearly a word about process.  But some translations do not capture … Continue reading

Posted in Shepherd's Care | 2 Comments

Site Updates: Reminder about 2011

Just a reminder that a couple of new things will begin on January 1, 2011. “The Holy Gospel” will move to Sundays, beginning January 2. “Gleanings” (Tuesdays) will be focused upon quotations from the desert Fathers and Mothers of the … Continue reading

Posted in Site Updates

Gleanings: Our “Cheering Section”

I had the privilege of knowing Dr. Tom Carruth.  I met him when I became a student at Asbury Theological Seminary in 1970.  He served as Professor of Prayer and Spiritual Life.  I was so drawn to him that I … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Listenings: Coming Up Short

Spiritual formation takes sin seriously.  We’ve been looking at that in relation to the condition which sin produces in our lives, described in the word erithea. But there’s a second word:  hamartia.  It’s the word Paul uses for sin in … Continue reading

Posted in Listenings | 1 Comment

Editorials: Best of 2010?

A few moments ago, I took a break from grading papers.  Going to the mailbox, I found my weekly Time magazine—“The Best of 2010” issue.  I’ve just finished my first pass through it, and while I may have missed a … Continue reading

Posted in Editorials

Connections: Jill Briscoe

For decades now, Jill Briscoe has been one of the most-respected Bible teachers in the world.  And along with her husband, Stuart, she has carried on a vibrant ministry at Elmbrook Church in Wisconsin.  Growing up with interest and training … Continue reading

Posted in Connections | 2 Comments

A Special Report: False Prophets

For thousands of years the landscape has been dotted by false prophets.  Today is no exception.  The members of Westboro Baptist Church, who travel the country declaring God’s judgment, are among them.  This might sound like an astonishing thing to say, but it … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

The Holy Gospel: December 12, 2010 (Year A)

Read:  Matthew 11:2-11 Meditation:  “Doubt in the Dungeon” John the Baptist appears for the second time in this year’s cycle of Advent stories.  But this time, he is not prophesying from the desert; he is pondering from the dungeon. The … Continue reading

Posted in The Holy Gospel

Ponderings: On “Pondering”

I often miss the obvious.  It took this season of Advent to make me see that it might be a good thing to write about “pondering” on a blog post entitled “Ponderings.” You probably already know where I’m going–straight to Mary, … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized

Shepherd’s Care: Person

In Jesus’ invitation to his first apostles in Mark 1:17, he says simply, “follow me.”  Jesus is the Gospel.  He is the Good News.  The Christian life, in general, and the life of ordained ministry in particular is all about … Continue reading

Posted in Shepherd's Care

Gleanings: Breaking Camp

W.R. Matthews, Dean of St. Paul’s Cathedral in London, wrote, “Has the time come to move on?  Then, break up camp with a good heart.  It is only one stage on the journey home.” These words have guided me in … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Listenings: An Alien Mind

We continue our look at erithea. A heart caved in upon itself—a life of radical self-interest—undermines what Paul refers to in Philippians as “the mind of Christ” (2:5-11).  Before he describes what that mind looks like, he precedes it with a … Continue reading

Posted in Listenings

Connections: The Image Center

Because Advent is an experience that touches all our senses, I am using “Connections” to link you with artists who present the spiritual life in creative and engaging ways. Today, I want to tell you about The Image Center in Seattle.  It’s … Continue reading

Posted in Connections

The Holy Gospel: December 5, 2010 (Year A)

Read: Matthew 3:1-12 Meditation:  “Forerunners” Advent is a good time to remember people God sent into our lives to “prepare the way of the Lord.”  God sent John the Baptist to prepare the way for the coming of Jesus; God … Continue reading

Posted in The Holy Gospel | 2 Comments

Ponderings: God’s Love

Many of us heard and responded to John 3:16, either as part of our conversion or shortly after it.  With the possible exception of Psalm 23, it is the best-known verse in the Bible.  It shows up in all sorts … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized

Site Updates: Coming in 2011

Beginning on Monday, January 3rd, I will make changes in the site which I hope will make your visits here even more enriching. “Gleanings” will be drawn from the sayings of the early desert Fathers and Mothers.  As I have … Continue reading

Posted in Site Updates | 1 Comment

Shepherd’s Care: Position

As we move beyond the focal text of Acts 20:28 (which I hope you will continue to ponder), I want to begin a journey with you through some of the passages I refer to as “the apostolic passages”—the texts where … Continue reading

Posted in Shepherd's Care