In the Presence

Yesterday, I was asked how we’re doing with Ginny’s health, as we have tentatively paused treatment while we wait to start a new one in a few weeks. It helped me to write out my thoughts, so I thought I’d share this with you also, since I know so many of you care: We live in a tenuous position every … Read More

COVID-19: Loving Through Confusion

COVID-19: Loving through Confusion

Why COVID-19 news can drive people bonkers: You read one thing one place and another thing elsewhere. Notice below how one title suggests contemplation (“should you” and “suggest”) while the other strikes more concern (“recommended” and “high”). Further notice the timing of the article, where a question is asked after statement was made earlier in the day. Part of the … Read More

Persistent Prayer

persistent prayer

One thought has sustained me over the past two weeks:  Hundreds of believers around the world are praying for our family.  With so much unknown before us, knowing of these prayers has been deeply comforting. Especially in the morning, when it’s easy to fear and hard to start another day, I remember your prayers. In my mind’s eye, I envision … Read More

RESPONSE to Defiant Churches

To Churches Defying Medical & Political Leaders, Christians should be leading the way in terms of loving neighbors and exercising wisdom. Now that children and 30-50 year olds are known to be dying, there is no “safe” group per se. With that in mind, our witness can be damaged if we value ritual (even good rituals!) more than the innocent … Read More

Love, Liberty, & Caution: Why Jesus Would Wear A Mask

Jesus Wearing a Face Mask

What’s most surprising right now is not the anti-science views circulating around the internet, but the callousness. There’s lots of debate, but less concern for the sick and the susceptible. All who fight for the “freedom” to not wear a mask overlook that the reason to wear a mask is for another person’s good, not their own. Good citizens, and especially people … Read More

COVID-19, Planning, & Jesus

Church, Jesus, COVID-19

As I observe dozens of Christians pondering what to do this weekend, I can’t help but ask: What would Jesus do?   My guess is that Jesus would be out picking grain and delivering it to the needy — just like David took temple bread to feed the hungry. Both knew that life mattered more than tradition.   The Sabbath, … Read More

Humility that Helps

Bear with me on this one, as it’s an imagined scenario within an imagined scenario…   For years now, starting when I was in college, I’ve tried to understand Jesus’ teaching on foot washing. As you may know, the actual practice of foot washing is a distinctive feature of some churches (e.g., Church of God), which I had experienced back … Read More

House Bill 2495 – Illinois’ Reproductive Health Act

Illinois house bill 2495

Illinois is currently attempting to pass expansive changes to reproductive law (House Bill 2495) — considered to be more extreme than what New York recently passed.   Without delving into political talking points, there are several reasons for both Democrats and Republicans to be concerned:   The new law states that the unborn do “not have independent rights under the … Read More

How to Choose a Bible Commentary (Tips to Select the Best Commentaries)

I was recently asked some good questions about commentaries — basically, which ones are the best?  To answer that, here are a few thoughts about which commentaries to use, as well as some practical advice to save you some money.   Most scholars would advise not to buy a complete commentary set.  This is because some volumes will be strong (even … Read More

The Purpose of Acts

The overall purpose of Acts is not to explain the Holy Spirt — i.e., as if Acts were a treatise on a single person of the Trinity. Yes, we could say the Spirit is the central character, and we can gather some theology of the Spirit from these narratives, but there is a much broader intent. After all, Acts is a … Read More

Promise in our Labor

Some of my favorite moments are when kids tell Bible stories.   Today, I learned that Noah’s family had to cut down a lot of trees and that alligators are an in-between case, but probably made it onto the ark. And then there was a rainbow to show that God would not do that again, and Noah’s family had lots … Read More

Protesting & Mullets

“Patriotism takes many forms, including teaching, transforming, and even protesting.” – Bob Costas To state Bob Costas’ point another way:  Seeking change (e.g., a wife protesting her husband’s appearance and requesting he cut his hair) is not equivalent to disowning what needs to be changed (the husband). Although the man might *feel* rejected, she remains by his side — even … Read More