Christian Decision Making: A Lesson from Disney

Despite the title of this post, I really do try to avoid taking spiritual lessons from Disney movies but I’ll make an exception for this one. In Disney’s The Lion King, the climactic moment comes as Simba is confronted by a choice: continue to run from his responsibility as the rightful king or return toContinue reading “Christian Decision Making: A Lesson from Disney”

No, Your Church Doesn’t Need “Visionary Leadership” – Proverbs 29:18

If you’ve read any leadership material in your lifetime, chances are you’ve come across references to a mythical creature: The Visionary Leader I say “mythical” because the descriptions of this rare and wonderful being depict a creature that is undoubtedly too magnificent for our plain-Jane reality: “Visionary leaders are the builders of a new dawn,Continue reading “No, Your Church Doesn’t Need “Visionary Leadership” – Proverbs 29:18″

Jesus’ Resurrection Changes Everything

I finished up a sermon series through the Gospel of Matthew this morning, Easter morning, with a look at chapter 28. The church I serve and I have walked together through Matthew and we’ve seen Jesus change everything. He changes our expectations of who God can use by having a family tree that would make most mobstersContinue reading “Jesus’ Resurrection Changes Everything”

A New Year, A New You, A New Reality

Happy New Year! In what is surely one of the most arbitrary rituals known to mankind, one second last night fell in 2016 and the very next second fell in 2017! A whole year changed over in the space of one second! And millions of people around the world stayed up to witness this temporalContinue reading “A New Year, A New You, A New Reality”

Sweet Baby Jesus Isn’t Enough: The (Complete) Christmas Story

At Christmas, our vision tends to narrow. We shift our focus from world events to our local community. We shift our focus from the worries of work to our family circle. And, in the church, we tend to shift our focus from the whole, immense Bible to a couple short chapters in Matthew, Luke, andContinue reading “Sweet Baby Jesus Isn’t Enough: The (Complete) Christmas Story”

Matthew 18: Humility, Forgiveness, and the Church

Jesus spent a lot of his time on earth highlighting the differences between the kingdom of heaven and the kingdoms of the earth. In Matthew 17 & 18, Jesus gives us a foretaste, a glimpse of what the kingdom of heaven will look like after he ascends and the Holy Spirit comes. In other words,Continue reading “Matthew 18: Humility, Forgiveness, and the Church”

Thy Kingdom Come: The Son of Man and the Kingdom of Heaven

Matthew 16:28: “Truly, I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.” This verse has confused many a Christian, myself included, throughout the years. Jesus is speaking to his disciples immediately after Peter confesses him to be the Christ,Continue reading “Thy Kingdom Come: The Son of Man and the Kingdom of Heaven”

The Cost of Confessing Christ

Everything about Jesus inspired curiosity. Everyone had questions: “Where did he come from?” “How can he teach like that?” “How can he heal like that?” “How can he talk to the Pharisees like that.” The question that everyone wanted an answer for was, “Who is this guy?” Jesus puts the question to his disciples inContinue reading “The Cost of Confessing Christ”

The Unpardonable Sin & Family Identity

Apparently, tracing family history is a big thing in my new home state of Utah. But it’s not a new phenomenon to me: my great-aunt was into lineage study and her work is legendary in our family, though not necessarily in the way she would have wanted. See, she traced our family line back toContinue reading “The Unpardonable Sin & Family Identity”

Keep the Sabbath?

The concept of Sabbath rest is arguably a major theme throughout Scripture, particularly the Old Testament. There is a rich imagery associated with this concept underlying much of the New Testament as well. Understanding the critical role that the idea of Sabbath rest played in the Old Testament  is important if we are going toContinue reading “Keep the Sabbath?”