What’s an Inner Life, and do you have one?

The Hustle Lifestyle tells us that what matters most is the hard work we do to reach our goals. Other voices declare something else is the most important thing: our status, our income or our career. Or going deeper, maybe what matters most is our family, our relationships, or our inner sense of satisfaction? But […]

You’re NOT the only Jesus they’ll ever meet.

“You’re the only Jesus they might ever meet.” Wait… what? If you grew up in particular parts of the church world, then you’ve heard that statement before. That, or another version of it. “You might be the only Bible they’ll ever read.” Well, friends. Let’s be honest. Those statements right there? They’re manipulative bunk. Manipulative […]

When Christianity seems like just too much.

Christianity is about all of life. We get this, right? We’re no longer trying to live a compartmentalized life with a little side portion of faith. We understand that following Jesus impacts every part of our lives. Not just our morals and beliefs, but also our relationships, our vocation, our finances, and even our politics. […]

Today’s the Day!

We’re still in January, the annual month-long festival of goals and new opportunities. I love new beginnings. A new chance is always good news, a reminder that everything is grace. But I also know this season of new-life-new-me declarations and goal setting can weigh heavy. After all, what’s our track record? Most resolutions fail. (See […]

Where is Jesus in this moment?

It’s a new year. If you haven’t already set some new goals and decided on new spiritual practices you want to try, you’re probably feeling pressure to do that. After all, it seems like everybody else is doing it! When we think about spiritual growth, most of us seem to think in one of two […]

Can Gratitude Save Your Life?

Thanksgiving happened not too long ago. We only just finished all the leftovers in the ‘fridge. Maybe, at your house, too. Perhaps at your gathering, people went around the table sharing something they were thankful for. If you went to church that week, undoubtedly the sermon was about gratitude. But then Black Friday came and […]

A Low-Stress Guide to Finding God’s Will

I grew up in a church community where God’s will was a tangible thing. God’s hand rested heavy on the world in our view of things, and we had our part to play in God’s mission. So, discovering God’s will for our lives was crucial. What a waste it would be, we worried, to live […]

Worried your prayer requests aren’t big enough? Pray anyway.

Some years back I was at a large Christian event. One speaker started off by thanking everyone who prayed for him earlier that day. Apparently, that morning he’d lost his keys. During an earlier session, he’d asked the group to pray for God to help him find them. Now he was thrilled to report that, […]

Ten Ideas that Connected (2018 Top Ten Posts)

Intentional spiritual growth. That’s what lights my fire. I love the idea that we can learn and grow, and that it can happen without fear, or condemnation. We aren’t striving to prove anything or earn anything or impress God or anyone. We are receiving our life as a gift, and out of gratitude, learning how […]

Are we growing in faith, hope and love?

My son is a fruit appraiser. Grapes, blueberries, strawberries, bananas, apples. Before he consents to put one in his mouth, he will carefully evaluate it. Look at it from every angle. Smell it. Check for squishy parts. Only after determining that it rises to his standards, will he eat it. Bananas are acceptable for about […]

A Blanket for Rachel

From time to time, I share with you a guest post, when I find one that’s particularly helpful. This short story, from Richard Spillman, is such an encouragement. So often we get discouraged because the small good we do in Jesus’ name can seem to not make much of a difference. Ever feel that way? […]

Do you need a little daily pastor? A Review of The Listening Day, by Paul. J. Pastor

I bet you eat food every single day. You do, right? Why? Because your body needs it. Through the miracle of digestion, your body breaks that food down into the nutrients that sustain you, heal you, rebuild and energize you. You probably don’t spent much time thinking about giving up eating altogether. It’s just too […]

Your To-Do List is Numinous

Think for a moment about the last significant spiritual experience you had, that last moment when it seemed the claustrophobic haze of everyday life burned off briefly, and you sensed God. When was that? What was happening? Was it worship service where the music transported you? Or maybe you were on a hike. The trail […]

The Limits You Hate May Be Good For You

I love this season of the year here in Portland. Blue sky sunshine days begin to break through the winter veil of wet greyness we’ve lived beneath for months on end. When those days happen… man, they are glorious! With those days of sun and the change in temperature, all the living things in our […]