Why We Need The Bells on Christmas Day

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow sat at his desk, alone. The year was 1863. Christmas Day. The American Civil War raging. In the last few years, he was twice a widower. His oldest son joined the Union cause, only to be wounded and nearly paralyzed. Longfellow, like us, wrestled that Christmas Day over choosing optimism or pessimismContinue reading “Why We Need The Bells on Christmas Day”

Jesus, Marx, and Systemic Sin

Can sin be systemic? The Christian Scriptures teach that sin is both a human condition & concrete action. Sin as a condition refers to the posture of the human spirit in relation to God, namely one of antagonism and total rejection of his rule. Sin as concrete action (also “sins”) are specific manifestations of sin,Continue reading “Jesus, Marx, and Systemic Sin”

Life As The Crucified

In America and much of the post-Christian West, the cross has lost its meaning. Jesus’ first century audience knew the cross had just one meaning, death. Yet the cross was the image Jesus chose. He called his followers to “take up their cross”. In enterprising Western society, “come and die” is not good marketing.  We’reContinue reading “Life As The Crucified”

The Debate Showed Us Ourselves

We weren’t watching a debate last night, we were watching ourselves. The debate last night was a mirror. Take a good long look. This moment is showing us who we are collectively as Americans. This is us. In the days following, American Christians should search our spirit. Who are we, and how can we meetContinue reading “The Debate Showed Us Ourselves”

We The American Church: When Faith and Politics Collide

American Christians are divided on multiple fronts, none more apparent than politics. We need to navigate this moment in a way that honors the Name we claim to represent. To honor Jesus, we must reject both apathy and compromise. American Christians are unique in that we will be held accountable by Jesus on both sidesContinue reading “We The American Church: When Faith and Politics Collide”

Escaping Consumer Christianity

We live in a culture defined by consuming. Today companies spend billions of dollars to learn and exploit our spending habits. We’d be foolish to think a consumer culture hasn’t shaped the contours of how we think about and exist as the Church in the West. We must reject consumer Christianity. Common consumer habits maskContinue reading “Escaping Consumer Christianity”

The Danger Of Hurry

Ever binge Netflix and still feel exhausted as the credits roll? The promise of rest turns into a paradox. Free time doesn’t mean good rest. In our hyperconnected-yet-socially-distant world we can have time alone, and avoid solitude completely. This is dangerous, and makes Spiritual rest impossible. Being alone is not solitude. Many of us todayContinue reading “The Danger Of Hurry”

Revolutionary Jesus

2020. What a year. We’re not even finished yet. Maybe you, like me, have found yourself using words like “unprecedented” or “it’s never been like this” to describe your life right now. Before we rush to use these words and phrases, let’s pause. Is anything happening right now actually new? The original iPhone was new.Continue reading “Revolutionary Jesus”