Craft of Preaching

“It’s just your opinion, man!”

"It's just your opinion, man!"

Many an argument, whether valid or otherwise, has been dismissed with those words.  This week I've been pondering to

Why I Preach

"I believe, I do believe, truly I believe it"

My call story is complicated.

I did not experience an Isaiah moment of spiritual clarity. Nor was I blasted

Preaching Politics

This week I have had to ponder the question, do we as leaders in the Christian church have anything at all to say in a polarized society to the issues that

The Dark Side of Proclamation

Celebration, the feast of victory, new life, abundant life, eternal life, the Good News, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, the community

Post-Christmas Blues

As always, this Christmas was a wonderful, magical time.

Services that were both peaceful and joyful, combining the beauty of music, the inspiring grace

Let the Healing Begin

On two occasions this past year, the most important message I spoke in church during the weekend was not my sermon; it was a remembrance of my parents.

Nice Sermon

"Nice sermon."

I'm assuming every pastor hears those words from time to time. Do you have any idea what they mean?

If you do, maybe you could help me out,

Bad to the Bone

Bad to the Bone

There is a fine membrane of separation between contextualizing and pandering, between engaging the culture and selling out to it. The membrane

A Week Without Faith

I just got back from vacation. I spent a week almost entirely free of faith, and I loved it.

That's not to say I took a week off from God. We were in pretty

I Got Nothing

Have you ever stepped into the pulpit knowing you've got nothing?

That happened to me a couple of weeks ago.

It wasn't because I ran out of time in a busy

Why I Don’t Always Preach the Expected Way

My daughter was part of a madrigal group in high school. For the high school baccalaureate service, her group planned to sing "When We Go Down to the River

The Gospel Blast-Off

Actually, digging for nuggets of insight and tapping people on the shoulder (see last two columns) are the lesser of the three tasks of that come with exploring

Mining Gold

Last month I admitted, perhaps reluctantly, that sometimes the job of a sermon is nothing more than a tap on the shoulder, reminding people of the truths

Shoulder Taps

A pastor got into the pulpit to preach his first sermon to his new congregation. He delivered a powerful, moving message, and the congregation appreciated

Chasing Birds

One of our boys has always had this fascination with wildlife. When he was three years old, he got it into his head that he wanted to catch a bird. Not