Pastor Note #94: Safety and Love of Neighbor — Risk and Following Jesus

Safety is a high priority for Americans.  And you might well be asking me right now, “What’s wrong with that?”  Well, I would say, “Nothing . . . . And everything.”  It depends on what sort of safety we’re insisting on. The right view of safety aims to avoid needless harm.  The wrong view of … Continue reading Pastor Note #94: Safety and Love of Neighbor — Risk and Following Jesus

Quote of Note #90: Grace for Neighbors. . . and Enemies

"To be people of amazing grace is to see ourselves as recipients of kindness and understanding not owed to us, and if we really believe it's been lavished upon us undeservedly, maybe we can lavish a little upon the people we find ourselves least inclined to view generously.  If we're showering only the people we … Continue reading Quote of Note #90: Grace for Neighbors. . . and Enemies

Pastor Note #87: Christmas — A Peasant King and the Foolishness of God

Christmas as a holiday in America is in many ways sacrosanct.  I’m not referring to the Christian holiday.  Most American, including Christian Americans, don’t really celebrate Christmas as a biblical holiday.  We love the warm, cozy sweetness of the “traditional” Christmas holiday.  In order to preserve that warm, cozy sweetness, we have to gloss over … Continue reading Pastor Note #87: Christmas — A Peasant King and the Foolishness of God

Quote of Note #35: Nationalism and the Mission of God in the World

"Whatever the temptations may be for the dominant nation at any point in world history to identify its mission with the mission of God, such temptations must be resisted at all costs; God's providential dealings with people (the Church, not any particular nation) are too mysterious to be reducible to simplistic nationalism; and the gospel … Continue reading Quote of Note #35: Nationalism and the Mission of God in the World

Quote of Note #33: Evangelical Fear

"Fear was a profound motivator for evangelicals.  We carried a vestigial memory of being the little ramshackle clapboard church from across the tracks whose congregation couldn't pay its minister.  We collectively carried a chip on our shoulders for being marginalized.  Fear and revenge were far from the teachings of Christ, but we had practiced them … Continue reading Quote of Note #33: Evangelical Fear