Is There Any Value In “Classic” Sunday School?

Recently, as I drove my beautiful, identical, 6-year-old twin girls to school, they sang to me. This is not unusual, they seem to sing every morning in the car. Jake (my 7-year-old son), on the other hand, sings more in the shower. But I get serenaded nearly every morning from the backseat as I shuttle my little princesses (princessi?) off to their second home behind a desk.

But this time they sang a song I had not heard in awhile. It goes something like this: “He’s got the whole world, in his hands. He’s got the whole world, in his hands….” If you’ve ever attended children’s church or Sunday school, you know the rest. And, at a time when the world seems so hell bent, it was comforting to hear my little girls sing these words. And what’s really crazy, is they actually BELIEVE these words.

And as I found comfort from our scary world in a childhood song learned in Sunday school, I thought about all the other things I learned in Sunday school. Continue Reading →

Pondering the Great Commission and Renaming Hymns (in the tub)

I’ve grown up in and around the church. I’ve heard countless sermons. I’ve been spanked in the middle of Dad’s message. I’ve heard the snap of fingers from behind the piano as Mom played that caused me to stop dead in my mischievous tracks. I sang Father Abraham, This Little Light of Mine, Jesus Loves Me, and The B-I-B-L-E. I’ve heard every Bible story a thousand times. I’ve added the phrase “in the tub” to the end of every possible hymn title (“Leaning on the Everlasting Arms…in the tub.” I’ve also heard of alternative endings, such as “on the pot,” but that one scares me. I suppose any bathroom reference will do. Wait, no, strike that last remark). But through all this there was one thing I rarely, if ever, heard—the complete meaning of the Great Commission. Continue Reading →

Facebook, the Bible, and the Metamorphosis of Reading

Written words aren’t what they used to be.

I had a conversation with a friend recently that led me to an epiphany (no clue what that word means, but I like the way it rolls off the tongue). The power of the written word has taken on a completely new meaning over the past few years, and we had better take notice.  Continue Reading →

What Happened To Church?

What is it about CHURCH?

I’ve been attending since I was negative 9 months old. (i.e., conception, wait, negative 7 months, I was early), but I sometimes wonder about its relevance to my Christian walk—at least in its present state.  Continue Reading →

WHAT’S MY LINE? the loss of personal convictions

My Dad did not like to hear cuss words. He would often give one warning to any given movie or show and after that, the plug was pulled. And when the remote was missing (or in the days before we had one), Dad had us get up, walk to the TV, and press the power button. This made it even more annoying. Continue Reading →

Spiritual Mentors vs. Spiritual Mothers

I have a spiritual mother, and she punches me, a lot, and really, really hard.

I’ve heard a lot lately about spiritual mentors. Certainly it is gaining ground as a staple of true, intentional discipleship. And while I see this as an invaluable tool, I think there is one more opportunity that’s perhaps even more effective than spiritual mentors Continue Reading →

How Important Are Relationships: a tale of two funerals

In my last post, I discussed the loss of a friend. If you haven’t read it yet, you can read about it here. I’ve wondered how to follow up such a serious and emotional post. I’m dry, witty, and sarcastic by nature, but unfortunately sometimes my humorous ways don’t feel all that appropriate. (Although, I often still try, much to my wife’s dread. Tune in next week for the return of sarcasm! See, I just did it right there.)  I spent this whole week trying to help my friends in any way possible as they planned a major, city-wide funeral. And in the midst of that, we lost another friend, who’d been struggling with cancer for some time. We spent our entire day yesterday, (from 9-9) attending funerals. And amid  all the death and tragedy, I realized, or was reminded of, how important relationships are. Continue Reading →

When Faith Gets Messy

Some think I’m slightly insane. After reading the following, you may agree, and I’m perfectly okay with that.

Yesterday we spent some time with our nearest and dearest friends, Nate and Dawniel. They just lost their brother-in-law, a local police officer named Justin, while he was on duty. The entire town has quickly rallied to support his widow, Danielle, and their three young sons, all under age 6. We sat with our closest friends, and we talked, and we shared, and we cried. It was gut wrenching. Continue Reading →

What Is Discipleship?

What does that say? It’s pronounced “di-shipe-uhl-shmip.” I REALLY wanted to make that the name of this entire blog site, but everyone I pitched it to shot me down. I need more humorous friends. They just don’t get it. (If you’re my friend and you’re reading this, I’m NOT talking about you, just everybody else. You have a great sense of humor. I like you. We hate them.)

I think we have a discipleship problem in America, so I’ve decided to dub what we do “dischpleshmip.” At some points we’re close to true discipleship, and at other points, we’re a million miles away.

Continue Reading →