Turning One

Today is my birthday.  One year ago I celebrated the half-century milestone, and at the time, things were looking fantastic.  If 50 is the new 40, then life begins at the big five-oh, and for me it certainly started off that way.  My book Vital Signs was doing great, and […]

What Do You Think ReThink is Thinking?

The prefix “re” usually implies “again,” — return, turn again; review, view again; regain, gain again; reframe, frame again — so in the case of ReThink Church, the implication is that we have thought church through at least once.  (It doesn’t work so well with regret, gret again?, rebate, bate again?, […]

Flatline or Learning Curve?

In medical jargon, “to flatline” means “to die.”  In educational and developmental circles, a “learning curve” indicates the challenge to recognize, adopt, and master new information.  If something is simple, the learning curve is gently sloped and short, but if there is a lot of new and/or complex information to […]

Amendment 1 and the Temple of Doom

Inclusiveness of the Church —  The United Methodist Church is a part of the church universal, which is one Body in Christ.  The United Methodist Church acknowledges that all persons are of sacred worth and that we are in ministry to all.  All persons without regard to race, color, national origin, status or […]

A Tale of Three Paradigms

Once upon a time, Christians in the United States rushed to build church buildings anywhere and everywhere they could — especially close to other churches who didn’t quite worship God the right way.  There was a flurry of competition, with new “independent,” “non-denominational,” “alternative” groups joining the mix each and […]

Reflections on Earth Day

Back when I was a lad, we used to celebrate Arbor Day — a day when we were simply encouraged to plant a tree.  My Sunday school teacher — the ancient and slightly scary, Miss Hattie Hack — dutifully took us outside the first Sunday after Arbor Day to plant […]

Do United Methodists Want to BE Disciples?

In 1996, The United Methodist Church clarified and refined its mission to be “making disciples of Jesus Christ.”  Twelve years later, it amended the mission to include “for the transformation of the world.”  In essence and in fact, we have declared that our reason for existing is to form, equip, […]

No Future for Leadership?

A number of interesting studies and articles – from sources as diverse as Harvard Business Review to Wired magazine to The Economist to Rolling Stone – focus on a growing short-sightedness and reactionary quality to organizational leadership.  Many companies (…The United Methodist Church aptly fits the category) are focusing the […]

Cynicalamity (Why I Blog)

I got mine today — here are some excerpts from an email I received: Why do you have to be so negative about everything?  If you hate the Methodist church so much, why don’t you just leave it? Every article you write accuses the church of failing, of screwing up, […]