Christian discipleship

Been There, Done That

I wonder how many United Methodists are simply tired and bored with the same old, same old?  There is a growing dual attitude about our churches that is important to note: some feel that we are irrelevant while others feel that we are little more than boring.  Not everyone.  I […]

Driven to Abstraction

Recently, a young pastor shared this story with me.  He and his congregation studied Vital Signs together over a year ago, and they have been working to balance their inward focus (ministries for the membership) with an outward focus (ministries to the community).  He thought the church was doing a really […]

Holy Hyper-Ventilation!

Question:  Which is more important, inhaling or exhaling? Answer:  Depends on which you did last… Breathing requires both, and life depends on good breathing.  Too little oxygen leads to asphyxiation; too much to hyper-ventilation.  You can’t be good at one and bad at the other.  No one can say, “Well, […]

Choosing the MiDL Way

Recent articles from Barna, Alban and Gallup highlight a growing trend in young America — a deep desire to be engaged in activities that make a positive contribution to others and that yield immediate results.  We are witnessing a shift from passivity to engagement — not a new phenomenon, but […]

Evangelisn’t – Part Two

My commentary on the research on evangelism and faith sharing in The United Methodist Church generated some interesting response — some defensive, some reflective, but no one really surprised by the conjecture that we’re not doing very much in the way of inviting people into relationship with Jesus Christ.  I […]

Methodist to the Core

During the 1990s and early 2000s, the General Board of Discipleship championed an effort to get The United Methodist Church to focus on ¶122 of the Book of Discipline — “The Process for Carrying Out Our Mission”or, the core process of our church.  (This has also been called “Our Primary […]

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, […]

Resurrectitude

“It’s a damn impossibility.  If Jesus came back, then Jesus never died in the first place!” “You are an idiot!  Just because you have never seen it happen, it can’t be true!” “People don’t come back from the dead.  Near-death experiences are just that, NEAR death.” “Jesus wasn’t “people.”  Jesus […]

Ratiocinational Anthem

Jesus loves me, this I know For the Bible tells me so, But Jesus does not love you, Because of all the crap you do. (scribbled on a church bathroom wall) There is a perverse logic at work in the Christian church.  Recent polls of regular church goers indicate that […]

Blasphemediocrity

blasphemy (noun) — irreverent or disrespectful words or actions concerning God or sacred things. mediocrity (noun) — a state of poor or barely adequate quality; neither good nor bad. blasphemediocrity (noun) — the  disrespect of God and the sacred by accepting barely adequate and/or poor quality standards of spiritual belief […]