Religious Trends

Failure In An Instant

At what point do we finally wake-up to the fact that there is no such thing as a lasting, transformative “quick-fix?”  We have suffered through over 50 years of “church-in-box” programs that have produced poor results at best.  Disciple Bible Study came closest to delivering transformation, but ultimately “popular” did […]

The Reason For the Season: Evil

I have been laid up with a bad sinus infection pretty much since Thanksgiving, so I spent an inordinate amount of time surfing daytime TV.  What an amazing amount of noise passing for entertainment…  However, two tidbits caught my attention while navigating the vast wasteland of morning programming.  First, I […]

Holy Disorientation

The root of the word “orientation” comes from the idea of using the rising sun — the east — as a reference point to stay on course.  We” orient,” then as the day passes into night, we become “dis-oriented,” until the sun reappears and we can “re-orient” ourselves.  A sublime […]

Yesterday Once More

I am constantly amazed at how many churches are looking for their future in their past.  It’s a bit like looking in the cupboard to see if we can find the best meal we ever ate.  For a people who believe that their Savior makes all things new, we certainly […]

Call Waiting

Are we missing something?  I have worked with college and seminary students for about twenty years now, and I am alarmed that the concept of “call” is on the endangered species list.  In a recent conversation about “call to ministry,” I actually had a second year seminary student come to […]

A House Divided

Oh, man, time to go fishin’ cause I opened up a can of worms!  For ten straight days my Inbox has been full of emails concerning race relations in The United Methodist Church.  The emails are troubling on two separate levels — one, that people don’t feel safe airing their […]

Recalculating

I have a special relationship with my GPS.  It’s a Garmin and her name is Greta.  Like most couples, we have moments when we don’t see eye to eye.  Greta wants me to go one way, and I choose to go another.  Every time I disregard Greta’s sage advice, she […]

Number Dumber

I listened to a Christian commentator rant about the moral decay of the nation and how Christianity “has lost its hold” on our country.  He was basing his rant on a report from the Gallup organization that indicates “only” 78% of Americans identify with some form of Christianity this Christmas.  […]

Do We Really Love “Them?”

I saw a heartening article in USA Today on Christmas Eve.  Jews and Muslims in the Detroit area were joining together to do charity work on Christmas Day to help compensate the lack of Christians who would be off celebrating their holiday instead of working in soup kitchens and food […]

Where Jesus Goes After Christmas

Driving past a church this morning, I noted that the Nativity scene was already down (sorry Wise Men — snooze, ya’ lose.  Wouldn’t want to honor Epiphany by accident or on purpose…) and Mary and Joseph were laying face down in the snow and the baby Jesus was buried under […]