The Curse Word Isn’t the Most Shocking Part of Philippians 3

In Philippians 3, the Apostle Paul declares that everything he once held tightly to in his life to be “skubalon” compared to knowing Christ. If you look up how the famous Greek word is used in the culture, you discover it was dung or animal excrement. Paul was making a very explicit point— everything is […]

Escape Rooms and Jesus Promising a Way Out 

My daughter Evie loves escape rooms. She has designed escape rooms at our house for her friends. She has been to more than 20 of them. Whenever we are in a new place, she asks us to look one up and go to it. One time we went to an escape room in Sacramento and […]

Seeing People and Three Types of Leaders

Leaders are typically driven. They have a deep burden and that burden becomes a vision that compels them to consistent action. But conviction towards a goal without deep love for people can ruin a leader and result in people not being cared for. At the same time leaders will be hurt as leading others is […]

A Greek Class that Left Me in Awe of God as Father

J. I. Packer wrote that the heart of the New Testament is the glorious news that God has adopted us as children through Christ. He stated: “You sum up the whole of New Testament religion if you describe it as the knowledge of God as one’s Holy Father. If you want to judge how well […]

Crawfish Boils and the Shared Experience of Suffering

Like all pastors, every week I stand in front of a room filled with people who are suffering. Not every person in the room is suffering, but there is suffering in every room. Life batters and bruises. There is grief from death, pain from betrayal, uncertainty about one’s future, and sorrow from a doctor’s prognosis. […]

Olympics, Leadership, and a Better Identity

A recurring struggle in my life is finding my identity in something other than Jesus – which is always something less than Jesus. I think being a leader who loves the role and the people can exacerbate the struggle with misplaced identity. Of course, we are to love our roles and the people we serve, […]

Lessons From an Epic Treasure Hunt That Ended in 2020

This book, Chasing the Thrill, tells the story of an amazing treasure hunt that ended last year, in 2020. Ten years earlier an art dealer named Forrest Fenn hid a treasure in the Rocky Mountains and placed a map and a poem in a book he wrote and self-published. The poem and map contained clues […]

Our Fragility and the Church’s Antifragility

In recent days there has been more conversations about “the greatest threat to the Church.” From people concerned about loss of religious liberty to those bemoaning a philosophical or theological position, the statement is seemingly used with ever-increasing frequency. While there could always be threats to how churches currently gather or to even what a […]

Finding Oneself on the Other Side of a Pandemic

More than any other time, I am hearing people say phrases like “I need to find myself again,” or “I feel like I don’t know who I am anymore.” Some are changing zip codes, switching careers, ending marriages and relationships in a pursuit to “find themselves” and where they fit in this world. Perhaps one […]

3 Ways Christians Should Live in a Politically Divisive Time

For many people, this has been a really challenging and politically divisive time. If it has not been for you, it is likely you only spend time with people who think just like you which isn’t good for you. The good news is that we are not the only Christians to live in a politically […]