Archives for Jul 2014

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Divine Appointments

In 1996, Claudia and I had the opportunity to attend a worship conference in South Carolina that had a profound impact on our ministry. It was hosted by Bishop Chuck Murphy who was an Episcopal priest at the time and later started AMiA. At the time, we were pretty worn out spiritually and in ministry. I was the Senior Pastor of Trinity Episcopal Church in Marshall, Texas. While we were there, we met Rev. Dr. Jon Shuler. Never heard of him...Read More

Sons of God

Of all the ways of thinking about my salvation in Christ, one of the most consistently powerful for me is adoption. In Romans 8:15 Paul writes one of the most beautiful and radical truths in all of Scripture, “For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, ‘Abba! Father!’” What does it mean to be adopted as a son of God? Surely more than I could ever hope to do justice to in around 500 words...Read More

The K2 of Scripture

For the past few weeks we have been looking at Romans 6-7, setting the table for the feast we are about to have on Romans 8. We will spend the next 4 Sundays on Romans 8 which has to be one of the high water marks of living the Christian life. What is the basis of Christian hope? Why do I struggle yet am dead to Sin? These and other significant questions will be addressed...Read More

Struggle Reframed: Flesh vs. Spirit

In Romans 8:1-11 Paul describes life in the Spirit and describes a different kind of struggle. A struggle nonetheless, but a struggle for those who are no longer condemned (8:1) because they are no longer bound by the “law of sin and death”—"the struggle of those who are now set free by “the law of the Spirit of life” (8:2)...Read More

Community and Providence

I had a chance encounter this week that speaks to the power of community and to the ways in which God can show up in ordinary moments. During our Dinners for 9 meal on Sunday, I had the pleasure to meet Jeff and Melissa Johnson. I didn’t know the Johnsons before Sunday, even though they only lived a few blocks away. But we got to know them over dinner, enjoying the brisket and ribs Jeff had smoked in his Big Green Egg...Read More

Deliverance from Disordered Desires

It can be immensely frustrating being a Christian. Having encountered the transforming love of God in Jesus Christ it can be disconcerting to find ourselves continually slipping into old ways of living. Whether our conversion was a dramatic experience or a slow growth in faithfulness, it is not uncommon to find that having come to Christ, we are now at odds with ourselves...Read More

New Sexual Revolution Coming Soon

Wow. That probably got your attention. Hope so. Over the next few weeks, as we give messages on St. Paul's exposition of new life in faith and baptism, we will continue to look at chapters 6-8 of Romans. What does it mean to be human? How do we understand our bodies as our presence to history?...Read More

Fruitfulness - The Third Thing

Have you ever been in or known someone in a truly dysfunctional relationship? Such relationships can be distorting and disorienting, bending the world in on itself so that the reality of the relationship becomes the only reality there is. Such relationships can be coercive and abusive, leading to the diminishment of the self. In Romans, Paul sees our relationship with sin in such terms...Read More

Christian Freedom

Freedom. What a great word describing all that we as a country fought and live for. Political freedom, tax freedom, religious freedom, freedom of speech, etc. these are just some of the freedoms we talk about often. But, there is another kind of freedom, and I invite you to join us this Sunday and the next several Sundays to look at the freedom Christ won for us...Read More