Simple Isn’t Easy

I received a number of responses and comments on my Simplicity Itself post.  I think three in particular deserve specific response: Dan.  I hear you, and agree with many of your points, but I am curious to how you propose to live this out either in your ministry in the […]

Simplicity Itself

Following the endless conversations about “what comes next?” in The United Methodist Church, it becomes more and more apparent that most of the suggestions, reports and recommendations made thus far are all designed for just one purpose: to avoid the hard work that actually must happen.  In my humble opinion […]

Reform or Refunction?

Well, what do you know, I basically agree with the General Secretaries of our General Boards and Agencies (with a few exceptions): we should be very clear about the missional outcomes we are trying to produce before we determine the best structure to adopt.  Amazing.  There are some in the […]

Settling

I was speaking with one of our retired bishops recently, who framed the current recommendations this way, “Well, it’s better than no plan at all.”  There are so many things wrong with this statement, and each one is more depressing than the last.  If the plans are poor plans, then, […]

The Mediocrity of More

Pick up a ball, toss it in the air, catch it.  Take two balls and toss them one at a time, catch them.  So far, so good.  Very few dropped balls.  Take a third and juggle them.  With practice, you become sure-handed and drop very few.  But what about four […]

Epiphantasy

From the Gospel According to Bob, Chapter 2, vss. 13-44: Lo, and behold, travelers from the east and parts southeast and newer developments more to the south actually than the east, were on a quest — some having traveled weeks, others months, others years — all hoping to discover the Messiah […]

Whadjagit?

Over the next forty-eight hours, one question will be asked more often than all others combined — “whadjagit for Christmas?”  I use the contraction instead of “what did you get?” for a very simple, personal reason.  When I was about 6 or 7 years old, I had a classmate – Wiley […]

The Nice Curse

Well, it is official.  The United Methodist Church is “popular.”  At least this is what a recent survey from the Baptist LifeWay Research indicates.  Americans across the United States — well, 3-out-of-5 of them — claim a “very” or “somewhat” favorable view of the UMC.  (Does anyone else see “somewhat” as […]

Christmas Affluenza

Three related unrelated stories: sitting in a coffee shop listening to three women talk about how much they HATE Christmas shopping… yet they are doing it daily, one of them reports that she has spent over $10,000 so far this year (to be fair, including jewelry she bought herself), and […]

Christmas C.S.I.

My posts of the past two weeks have generated some fun and interesting discussions around Christmas.  While I am not a fan of the “war on Christmas” rhetoric adopted by evangelicals operating from a victim mentality, I do agree that Christmas as a religious observance is in trouble.  My contention, […]