Quote of Note #47: Being Part of What God Is Doing

"'The first thing to do in responding to God's presence and Word,' [Basil Pennington] repeatedly told me, 'is to notice what God is doing and to keep out of God's way.  The second is to align ourselves with and participate in God's transformational actions in the world.'  God is active and present in the world.  … Continue reading Quote of Note #47: Being Part of What God Is Doing

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Pastor Note #82: Learning to Hear God’s Voice

From Digital Camera to Bird Songs When I got my first digital camera, photography opened up for me in a new and exciting way.  In the old days of film photography, every time you took a picture, it cost you half a dollar for the film and the processing.  That could run into money pretty … Continue reading Pastor Note #82: Learning to Hear God’s Voice

Bible Note #32: Righteousness, Perseverance, and God’s Grace — Proverbs 24:16

“[F]or the righteous falls seven times and rises again, but the wicked stumble in times of calamity.”  Proverbs 24:16 [ESV] I’ve been coming back to this verse a lot in the past couple of weeks.  It’s helped me a lot in thinking about grace, sanctification, and the life of following Jesus.  To fallen people living in … Continue reading Bible Note #32: Righteousness, Perseverance, and God’s Grace — Proverbs 24:16

Quote of Note #34: Self-Sacrificial Service

"At the height of the [Roman] persecution, a plague broke out.  Fearing contagion, pagans dumped members of their own families in the street when they got sick.  But Christians, Eusebius said, 'heedless of the danger, took charge of the sick, attending to their every need and ministering to them. . . drawing on themselves the … Continue reading Quote of Note #34: Self-Sacrificial Service

Pastor Note #78: Christian Witness in an Age of Offense

In the 1960s it was the Age of Aquarius.  (If you’re much younger than I am, you probably don’t understand that reference.)  We are now in the Age of Offense.  Everybody is offended these days.  Everybody has become touchy.  We all tend to take everything personally.  We have begun to use the things that offend … Continue reading Pastor Note #78: Christian Witness in an Age of Offense

Quotes of Note #15 — Forgiveness and Freedom

"Regardless of all the reasons why we might not want to forgive, the bottom line is that forgiveness is the best way to bring you into freedom. . . ." "The devil blinds us with the lie: I'm punishing my offender by not forgiving them.  It is as if we think by our refusal to … Continue reading Quotes of Note #15 — Forgiveness and Freedom

Prayer Note #57 — Relying on God vs. Presuming upon God: A Prayer

I am utterly and in every way dependent on your mercy and grace.  My life my salvation, my well-being all of it hangs by the thread of your merciful, kind, gracious disposition toward me.  Your love and desire for my well-being is the only bulwark for me against catastrophe of every sort in my life.  … Continue reading Prayer Note #57 — Relying on God vs. Presuming upon God: A Prayer

Pastor Note #74 — Trust and Unity in American Civil Society and Politics

Trust and Unity in American Society and Politics The great debate over these intelligence memos is a painful demonstration of a sickness that is afflicting our society.  We are experiencing a crisis of trust.  A civil society in which people have ceased to trust each other and our foundational institutions is a deep and dangerous … Continue reading Pastor Note #74 — Trust and Unity in American Civil Society and Politics

Quotes of Note #12 — To Be Filled With the Holy Spirit

"I believe firmly that the moment our hearts are emptied of pride and selfishness and ambition and self-seeking, and everything that is contrary to God's law, the Holy Spirit will come and fill every corner of our hearts.  But if we are full of pride and conceit, ambition and self-seeking, pleasure and the world, there … Continue reading Quotes of Note #12 — To Be Filled With the Holy Spirit