Contributed on Jan 14, 2001
When the real Jesus is seen, he presents problems -- either he is too difficult for us to accept, or he is offensive to our sloppy ways of doing church, or we are just too tired of churchiness -- but his words of life revive our weariness.
I notice that they’ve revived one of the old-time television shows. We can once again see, “To Tell the Truth”. The idea of “To Tell the Truth” is that three people come out, and they all stand and give a name – the same name. Then someone reads a few sentences about the person who actually has ...read more
Contributed on Jan 22, 2001
When Jesus speaks to the church, as to ancient Jerusalem, he gives us agenda anxiety, for we fear that we are not going to get done what we want to do, since his agenda is far different.
The campaigns are over. So are the celebrations and the inaugural balls. The toasts, the handshakes, the good wishes are about to fade into memory. Today, for George Walker Bush, the work begins. Today, the list of things to do takes on shape. Today, the agenda becomes different. Yesterday he ...read more
Contributed on Mar 27, 2001
We are given to frenetic activity, most of it characterized by wrong priorities, a lack of partnerships, and the failure of power. We get played out unless we are prayed out.
Is there a lawyer in the house? Somebody who can give me a little legal advice? I need to know what the statute of limitations is on destruction of church property. Can somebody tell me, is it possible to prosecute fifteen years after the crime? And especially, is it possible to prosecute a pastor ...read more
Contributed on Apr 1, 2001
Words do hurt when they come from our unresolved anger. That anger is about our own issues, it requires accountability when it hurts others, it separates us from God when it is deliberate. Reconciliation is a priority.
Words have power. The things we say to one another have power. Kids may deal with smart-mouths in the schoolyard by chanting, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me.” But that’s rubbish! Don’t you believe it. Names do hurt. Words hurt. The things we say to each ...read more
Contributed on May 9, 2003
We claim to know too much, as we want to make ourselves elite, we want to close off new ideas. Know nothing but the servant heart (a sermon for deacon ordination).
The psalmist says, “He has put a new song in my mouth.” And so I took that very literally and composed a new song for church today. Do you want to hear me sing it? It’s called, “Blessed ignorance, Jesus is mine” You say you don’t think you know that one? You say you think I got that wrong? ...read more