Pastors' Notes

Subscribe to the RSS Feed
  • Featured Posts
  • All Posts

Bettering the Netflix Solution

The CEO of Netflix, Reed Hastings, told the Wall Street Journal in 2016, "Fundamentally, we're about eliminating loneliness and boredom."⁠1 What is lost, when the "solution" to loneliness and boredom is entrusted to entertainment? Reed Hastings is right: solitary confinement, for us humans, is torture, because we are more than rational beings: below our reflective, rati...

Keep Reading

Kennedy and the Kingdom

The news that the President will add another Justice to the Supreme Court shocked everyone. Many on the conservative side cheer, hoping that this might bring new advances for the kingdom in our nation. On the one hand, we should rejoice and thank God when it seems He is rolling back injustice, through the means of human leaders. On the other hand, our perpetual temptation...

Keep Reading

Bleak Kids

With the end of the school year and summer, it seems good to reflect on the state of kids, and our kids. Recently a CDC report labeled teenagers' inner lives in America as "bleak"⁠1 - beyond the normal ups and downs of adolescence. Experts point to a handful of culprits: perfectionism - that life is not worth living if perfection cannot be achieved; performancism - that...

Keep Reading

A Big Deal

Sometimes our care for each other sucks. (There, you made me use that word that Momma told me never to use. But it's true. Sometimes we suck.) We don't mean to suck. But therein lies a big part of the problem: we don't know what lands on each other like an anvil, for two major reasons: those afflicted don't say so, and the afflictors assume that their words are at worst ne...

Keep Reading

Failure to Flourishing

The measure of our faith shows itself as much in the aftermath of failure as in the glow of attainment. Post-failure, Satan weaves his "best" lies. In these times the boots of faith must gain gritty traction, and hold. How? I offer a few thoughts from 1 Corinthians 1: Look to Jesus to regain hope. In 1 Cor. 1:4-9, Paul confidently states, about the seriously-messed-up-sin...

Keep Reading

When Serpents Bite Your Granny

Sometimes a post on some blog sticks with you, for your own good and the repeated good of others. I share one with you this week, from Mike Leake, written in 2012: "Perhaps the most offensive claim of the gospel is that a hate-filled cannibalistic child molester finds the same redemption and has an equal status in the eyes of God as your dear old church lovin', bake-sale ...

Keep Reading

Listen . . .

It has been said that when we encounter non-Christians, we speak and give answers. But when Jesus encountered non-Christians, he listened, and told stories. I think that's about right. While Jesus is the Son of God, completely full of the Spirit, much of His wisdom came not from taking advantage of His supernatural power, but from perfectly doing the human skill of listeni...

Keep Reading

Overcoming a Powerful Blockade to Prayer

Psalm 1311O Lord, my heart is not lifted up;my eyes are not raised too high;I do not occupy myself with thingstoo great and too marvelous for me.2But I have calmed and quieted my soul,like a weaned child with its mother;like a weaned child is my soul within me.3O Israel, hope in the Lordfrom this time forth and forevermore. One of the most powerful blockades to prayer is ...

Keep Reading

Any Well-Trained Monkey . . .

"And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment . . ." Philippians 1:9 I have not forgotten, and have sometimes forgotten, what Mr. Ikard whisped in my ear. I was a new bank management trainee , sitting in "Charge-Off Committee" - an "intimate" gathering of the bank's executive management and about 60 of my peers, where ban...

Keep Reading

Rough Edges

On two prior occasions I've written about the importance and power of our "little" interactions with each other, especially between "insiders" and "outsiders", or "long-timers" and "newcomers". It's easy to forget what it was like to be an outsider, and to make it harder for newcomers to focus on the beauty of God, what for the social awkwardness we foist on each other. To...

Keep Reading