Category Archives: Spirituality

Vision or Memory

This morning’s preacher worked from Philippians 3 and urged us to “press on.” In his message he used a “preacher story” about a man who was faced with a major medical crisis. If he had the risky surgery, he might … Continue reading

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Individual vs. Collective

Listening to Peter Harrison’s fifth Gifford Lecture as I drove to Marshall today, I heard his description of a shift from natural philosophy to science in the early modern period. Under the old paradigm (and I use Kuhn’s term intentionally), … Continue reading


Posted in church growth, Discipleship, Leadership, Spirituality, Theology, United Methodism, Will Willimon | Leave a comment

Join the Conspiracy

In his book The Divine Conspiracy Dallas Willard says that when people are connected with Jesus through faith, “their union with Jesus allows them now to be a part of his conspiracy to undermine the structures of evil, which continue … Continue reading

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Christian Perfection

Christian Perfection is something John Wesley taught. It has been retained in the current United Methodist Church in the question asked of those being ordained Elder: “Do you expect to be made perfect in love in this life?” The expected … Continue reading

Posted in Discipleship, Perfectionism, Sin, Spirituality | 1 Comment

Grades in Church?

Back in the olden days, I did fairly well at school (in spite of avoiding my homework as often as possible). I valued making good grades. I set high standards for myself and tried to keep them, though high school … Continue reading

Posted in Discipleship, Discipline, Spirituality | 4 Comments

Pursuing Holiness

One of the defining convictions of the Methodist movement is that it is possible to live a holy life, a life pleasing to God. Methodists have at least given lip service to this conviction since the days of John Wesley … Continue reading

Posted in Discipleship, Spirituality, United Methodism | 3 Comments


We’re just back from a trip to our 2010 family reunion. With a family of five, this means lots of driving to get there and back, staying in hotels, and eating out. Come mealtime while on the road, we tend … Continue reading

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Learning from North Point, part 9

(Picking up from an old series) North Point’s fifth “Principle for Effective Ministry” is “Listen to Outsiders.” Pretty strange idea, isn’t it? After all, what can we expect outsiders to know? If we want to know what to do as … Continue reading

Posted in church growth, Evangelism, North Point Church, Spirituality | 2 Comments

Avoiding Fame

Have you read the Miley Cyrus quote in the recent Christianity Today: “My faith is very important to me. But I don’t necessarily define my faith by going to church every Sunday. Because now when I go to church, I … Continue reading

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Getting to Philippians 4

Have you ever noticed what Paul said in Philippians 4? We find him saying things like: Rejoice in the Lord always; Again, I say, rejoice! I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. My God shall supply all … Continue reading

Posted in Jesus, Paul, Spirituality | 1 Comment