The Final Week

Today I will give my final lecture as a college professor, symbolizing the end of fifteen years in Christian college ministry. Sometime late in the afternoon, I’ll finish a lecture like I’ve done many times before. But this time will be different. I’ll close my white teaching binder for the last time, corral my personal … More The Final Week

A Prayer for Patience

Holy Father, When I ponder the world, the church, and especially my own life, I am astonished at your patience. Your long-suffering is beyond comprehension. We, your church, stand in loving amazement at your united patience as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Loving Father, you patiently chose us, patiently made us, patiently redeemed us, and … More A Prayer for Patience

Drops of Grace: The Limits and Opportunities of Momentary Ministry

It happened right after a Saturday night message at a church I was visiting. I had just finished my third message for a youth retreat when a 14-year-old I’ll call “Megan” found me at the back of the auditorium. She had heard me say the night before that I knew serious things were going on … More Drops of Grace: The Limits and Opportunities of Momentary Ministry

If You Want to Learn…

If you want to learn, you have to get uncomfortable. And since we don’t often choose to be uncomfortable, if we want to learn, we have to find teachers and mentors and programs and responsibilities and experiences that will make us uncomfortable. The semester has begun at Boyce College, my final semester as a college professor. … More If You Want to Learn…

Chains Shall He Break: The Jewish Messiah, the Christian Church, and the Hope of Justice

The Christian tradition has a complicated relationship with justice. In some situations, Christianized systems have been terribly unjust; in other situations, Christians have led the way toward justice. Sometimes Christians have denied that societal justice should be a concern of the faithful; at other times, Christians have decried any model of Christian theology that downplays … More Chains Shall He Break: The Jewish Messiah, the Christian Church, and the Hope of Justice

Reading for the Story: An Invitation to Read Large Portions of Scripture

Have you ever started watching a movie late at night, on a whim, only to have your better reason kick in and exchange the entertainment for a better night’s sleep? Or walked into a theater five minutes late and missed the opening scenes of a film? Or watched only bits and pieces of a documentary … More Reading for the Story: An Invitation to Read Large Portions of Scripture

What Will It Take? Donald Trump and His “Evangelical” Supporters

What will it take to convince “evangelical” promoters, defenders, and supporters of Donald Trump that their ongoing support for a wicked, perverse, arrogant, scandalized, Christ-professing man is systematically dismantling their current integrity and their future witness? I almost never blog or tweet about politics or political candidates. But with the candidacy of Donald Trump, far more … More What Will It Take? Donald Trump and His “Evangelical” Supporters

ASKED: Should my personality influence my ministry?

“Should my personality influence my ministry?” A female student recently asked this question in a discussion about counseling, but it applies to any responsibility a person might hold. Whether leading, managing, preaching, organizing, parenting, or discipling, we often wonder how our personalities should affect our Christian responsibilities. The longer we live, the more we see that … More ASKED: Should my personality influence my ministry?

What Every Young Man Needs

As a college freshman, Scott Burns was my Resident Director. Scott was a 6’5″ man’s man who knew everything about hunting, fishing, poisonous insects, and indigenous bushes. When he walked the halls, guys flocked to him. But above all these things, “Burns” was known for one particular quality. I later heard that he had committed to pray consistently … More What Every Young Man Needs

The Magical and the Mundane

Each week, it seems, I experience a class session that seems magical — filled with intellectual tension, unbridled curiosity, stimulating questions, rich spontaneity, and seemingly life-shaping learning. I inevitably walk away with my mind racing over fresh terrain and new ideas, rejoicing in my God-given role as lead learner. Of course, growth is mainly measurable over time, … More The Magical and the Mundane

He Always Provides: $246.46 and the Faithfulness of God

Consider this reflection a heap of stones piled purposefully along the path as a memorial to the faithfulness of God. The email reads: Dear David, We received your follow-up documentation, and we have processed a refund in the amount of $246.46, which we believe represents your reasonable expenses. The check will be mailed via U.S. … More He Always Provides: $246.46 and the Faithfulness of God

ASKED: Should a younger Christian ever correct an older Christian?

ASKED: A New Feature This semester I’m teaching 230 students in four biblical counseling classes at Boyce College, the undergraduate school at Southern Seminary. CN101a: Introduction to Biblical Counseling CN101b: Introduction to Biblical Counseling CN201: Methods of Biblical Counseling CN481: Counseling Skills Development I Depending on time and topic, students ask 10-20 questions per class, and many … More ASKED: Should a younger Christian ever correct an older Christian?