The Greatest Treasure of Church History

This is my year of traveling, searching, and scouring the world to uncover the treasures of church history. Since December I’ve been in 11 different countries (with many more remaining) and have gazed upon some amazing objects. This is, of course, all part of the project I’m calling EPIC that is meant to culminate in a book and documentary. Some of the objects I’ve seen have great monetary value to the degree that they are rightly considered priceless. (Go ahead …

Not Worrying ≠ Not Caring

Those nights when you lie awake, restless and tossing and turning, your mind churning over a future that is uncertain and unknown. Those days when your heart is heavy and your spirit is sorrowful while you imagine what will befall you or that person you love. There isn’t a human being alive who doesn’t know the agony of worry. There isn’t a human being alive who hasn’t allowed legitimate concern to devolve into illegitimate anxiety. But just because worry is …

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The Controversy Behind the Revoice Conference

I have received quite a few emails and messages about the forthcoming Revoice conference at Memorial Presbyterian Church (Presbyterian Church in America), in St. Louis. This conference is a long way from me both geographically and denominationally but, like many other people, I have been paying some attention to the controversy surrounding it. Though it is likely to be a fairly modest event (at least during this age of megaconferences) it seems to be serving as a kind of bellwether …

How the Church Submits to Jesus Christ

I am sure we’ve all read and wondered about God’s command to Christian wives: “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord” (Ephesians 5:22). It seems that in the God-ordained ordering of a Christian household, God intends husbands and wives to accept differing but complementary roles and for the wife to do this, she needs to focus on the way she and her husband and all the church of Christ submit to their Savior. There must be some …

How We Worshipped (A Sunday in May)

Every few weeks I like to share an example of one of our worship services from Grace Fellowship Church. I hope that by doing this others will begin to share their services as well. I am eager to learn from other churches as they tell how they choose to worship the Lord. This service’s cast of characters included Paul as our service leader and lead worshipper, myself as the elder who read the Scripture text and prayed, and Stefan as …

Friends to Christ, Strangers To His Church

It’s remarkable how often the Bible describes the Christian life as a shared life. We become Christians through a personal commitment to Christ, then immediately bind ourselves in a corporate commitment to Christ’s people. There are so many biblical commands we can fulfill and examples we can imitate only if we are involved in one of these Christian communities we call “church.” The notion we can be friends to Christ but strangers to his church is completely foreign to scripture. …

Isn’t This Just The Carpenter Guy?

Jesus began his public ministry away from his hometown of Nazareth, but it was not long before he returned and began to teach in the local synagogue. The people’s response might have been disheartening to someone just getting started in a new vocation. “Is not this the carpenter?” they asked (Luke 6:3). Jesus was now 30 years into his life and just setting out into a very public ministry, but his friends and neighbors knew him only as “the carpenter.” …

The Space Between Courting and Hooking Up

I have often reflected on how and why dating has become so difficult in the 20 years since it was of any real concern to me. At least, when speaking to today’s young adults and observing their lives, it sure seems there has been a significant shift. Something has changed between then and now so that what once seemed relatively simple has become strangely complicated. I know there are many reasons for this, but I’ve been pondering the possibility that …

Don’t Leave Jesus Out of Your Marriage

I recently had the opportunity to speak and preach on marriage. This is always a tremendous challenge personally. There’s nothing like spending a couple of weeks deep in what the Bible says about marriage to expose my insufficiencies as a husband and to come face-to-face with all the ways I fail to be all God calls me to be and to be all my wife deserves. More than anything else, I was challenged to continue to ensure Jesus is the …

A Warning To Those Who Work With Words

There isn’t much I know that wasn’t taught to me by someone else. There isn’t much I count as wisdom that didn’t come to me by way of someone older and wiser than myself. The wisdom I am about to share is of exactly that kind. I won’t reveal the source, but will say it was a man known for that rare but beautiful combination of a gentle spirit and a wise mind. This man works with words. Words are …