A Podcast On The Chip & Gary Tennis Show

Chip Hooper and Gary Plock were All-American college tennis players at the Universities of Arkansas and Texas back in the 1970s. I had heard of both, knew neither, but was aware they were really good players.

Through the miracle of social media Gary has befriended me. He seems to like my take on faith as well as my occasional forays into tennis. read more

Top Five Tuesday — Top Five Reflections On Easter 2019

They really do never get old.

Easter Sundays, that is. I suppose this is my 29th of them in full time ministry. I doubt any one of them has been THE BEST EVER, but without the sum of them, I’m sure my soul would have starved.

This Easter, these five moments stick with me:

1.The music was a smash. The band started us off with a bluesy adaptation of Johnny Cash’s Ain’t No Grave.  Johnny would have been envious of our vocalists.   read more

The Jesus Effect, Week 4 — The “The Benefit Of The Doubt” Sermon Rewind

This weekend’s Easter message …

Followed believer baptisms at all the Sunday celebrations at Moss;

Admitted to “starting dumb” and “ending strong”;

Focus on Thomas in and beyond Scripture;

Led to this bottom line: Jesus erases your doubts to release your potential.

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What A Basketball Writer Taught A Methodist Preacher About Ministry

Bill Simmons, who is a Boston-bred, internet-based author and columnist, has written the definitive history of the NBA with his The Book Of Basketball.

In this, the quickest 800 page read of my life, Simmons is in turn unfiltered, poignant, statistical, profane, irreverent, and hilarious.

His gifts for footnoting and pop culture analogies have to be seen to be believed. read more

Me, Enneagram, And A Three

A lot of you know that the Enneagram personality inventory has become quite a phenomenon in recent years, especially among emerging generations.

So, after having people tell me that I’m a “Five” or a “One” over the last several months, I decided to take the plunge and take the test. read more

Top Five Tuesday — Top Five Athletes / Teams I NEVER Root For

We all have them.

Teams we hope lose. Athletes we hope choke. People who, when they win, we just have to turn the TV off because we can’t bear to watch the celebration.

So here are five players and/or teams who have fit that bill for me at different times in my life. Don’t hate me. Here goes: read more

The Jesus Effect, Week 3 — The “One Of These Things Is Not Like The Other” Sermon Rewind

The message for Palm Sunday …

  • Recognized that King Jesus’ Coronation actually took place on the cross — it’s just that mockers and scoffers didn’t realize it;
  • Developed the pattern of the “testing” of Jesus while he was on the cross — “if you’re the Savior, save you first!”
  • Reminded people that there is no such thing as “my Jesus.” There’s “Jesus”;
  • Landed at this bottom line: Jesus refused to help himself so you’d remember to humble yourself.

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We are getting ready to look at a story and to glean some things from it and I can promise you this: the result will either be the most LIBERATING thing you’ve ever heard or the most TERRIFYING. Not much middle ground there, is there? It will either be the ultimate get out of jail free card or it will be the eternal life sentence. One of these things is not like the other, indeed. No pressure there, right? read more

The Connecting Power Of Shared Confession(s)

Several years ago, I attended a worship event where I was surrounded by an eclectic group of 20s and 30s.

On several occasions that evening, the primary speaker referred to “our Savior.”

It’s not a novel description of Jesus to be sure, but it nevertheless impacted me with its power and precision. read more

From The Tomb To The Womb

Yesterday, I met with a man from Good Shepherd in advance of his baptism we will celebrate on Easter Sunday.

And as part of his preparation, we looked at Romans 6:3-5:  

Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. read more

Top Five Tuesday — Top Five Tensions In Ministry

Andy Stanley has spoken helpfully about the distinction in church life between tensions to be managed and problems to be solved.  

In other words, there are certain dilemmas that pastors and church leaders will simply need to learn to live with because they will never just “go away.” read more