"John Wesley was once asked, 'If you knew that you would die at twelve o'clock tomorrow night, how would you spend the intervening time?' 'Why,' was the answer, 'just as I intend to spend it. I would preach tonight in Gloucester and again tomorrow morning. After that I would ride to Tewksbury, preach in the … Continue reading Quote of Note #79: Living in Light of Dying
"Yes, I believe that the kingdoms of this world, American, Venezuelan, and Chinese, will become the kingdom of our God and Christ, and I believe this new kingdom is already among us. That is why I'm a pastor, to introduce people to the real world and train them to live in it. I learned early … Continue reading Quote of Note #78: Training for a New Kingdom
"The glory of the gospel is that when the Church is absolutely different from the world, she invariably attracts it. It is then that the world is make to listen to her message, though it may hate it at first. That is how revival comes. That must also be true of us as individuals. It … Continue reading Quote of Note #77: Being a Distinctive People
In the past few years, I’ve had some interesting conversations with folks who are involved with volunteer fire departments in various communities around where I live. All of those local departments are struggling. Funding is a challenge, to be sure. But the really difficult problem is getting enough volunteers to fill their ranks. People are … Continue reading Pastor Note #86: Consumers or Disciples?
"If we hope to experience transformation, we need to develop a culture in the congregation that encourages people to live in the world for the sake of the world, without being of the world. Gerhard Lohfink, in Jesus and Community, makes a strong case that it has always been God's intention to work through a … Continue reading Quote of Note #76: A Contrast Community
"Anyone who has any experience at all of the living God knows that he is nothing at all like this Somebody who tut-tuts politely at our failings and lays a soothing hand upon our anxious little heads. The God, who lives in us if we allow him, is not necessarily always gentle: he can be … Continue reading Quote of Note #75: God Is Not Always Gentle
“All the trees of the field will know that I am the Lord. I make the high tree low; I raise up the low tree. I make the green tree wither, and I make the dry tree sprout. I, the Lord, have spoken, and I will do it!’” Ezekiel 17:24 [NET] What an odd verse … Continue reading Bible Note #38: God’s Redemptive Havoc
"If our proclamation does not upset the powers-that-be--if it doesn't 'turn the world upside down' (Acts 17:6) -- is that because our culture is friendly to the gospel? Or have we made the gospel friendly to the culture? If we aren't treated like Paul, is that because society has changed--or have we changed? Could it … Continue reading Quote of Note #72–Failing to Upset the Powers-That-Be
There is heresy finding foothold in America and in some other parts of the world. It is not new. The devil is not remarkably inventive. He recycles old poison wherever he thinks it will work. In America this heresy is arising under labels such as “Christian white nationalism” and “Christian Identity.” As a pastor and … Continue reading Pastor Note #85 — The Demonic Heresy of Christian White Nationalism
"The fact is, we are leaky vessels, and we have to keep right under the fountain all the time to keep full of Christ, and so have a fresh supply." Dwight L. Moody, Spiritual Power. Chicago: Moody Press, 1881/1997, page 49.