Monday, November 17, 2014

2 Corinthians 1:3-7 How to Comfort Others


What’s the best way to comfort someone in pain? How can we comfort those who are experiencing real hurt? Most of us aren’t born with a skill set for comforting people in pain. In fact, statistics show that we’re actually getting worse at comforting other people. From the year 2000 to 2010 the ability to empathize dropped 40% among college students. That means that a huge segment of our population has gotten worse at showing concern. With the rise of technology and entertainment, we’re forgetting how to be kind. 

Saturday, November 8, 2014

What is the Gospel?


What is the gospel? My first semester at seminary I showed up at school feeling called by God to become a pastor and I couldn't say what the "gospel" is. Sure I had an idea. Isn't the gospel that we're "saved by faith" or that "Jesus rose again"? The word "gospel" comes from the Greek word that means "good news." Mark 1:1 tells us the gospel is "...the good news about Jesus the Messiah." (NIV) So what "about" Jesus' life and ministry is "good news" for us?

Monday, October 20, 2014

Job 7:1-21 Bitter Life. Unfair God.


Do you feel hopeless? Do you feel lost? Do you feel like the darkness won’t lift? In the 1500s a priest named John wrote about the darkness. John wrote the famous poem, “Dark Night of the Soul.” John was a man so devoted to God he renamed himself “John of the Cross.” John named himself after the cross because he wanted to crucify his sinful desires. He did this through practicing community, poverty, fasting, silence, enclosure, and prayer. He was what we might call today Pius, ascetic, or intentionally holy.  He was also pretty mystical or what some might now call charismatic. So if John were alive today, he probably wouldn’t attend our church. But there’s s till a lot we can learn from the way John suffered.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Ode to a Mentor


My mentor’s name is David. We met at a local pastor’s gathering where he took voluntary interest in me. I needed a mentor and he wanted to make disciples by caring for the next generation of pastors. For the next year and a half I knew him, David poured into me. He taught me the importance of sharing life stories together, hunting each other’s sin, and giving each other grace.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Job 1:1-22 The Problem of Evil


Sometimes bad things happen to good people with no explanation at all. Maybe some of you have heard all the bad things that happened to an orphan from Kansas. This girl had a lot of bad things happened to her. One day a tornado destroyed her home and carried her and her dog away. The storm takes her to enchanted land where she immediately commits accidental homicide. 

Friday, August 22, 2014

A Response to “10 Reasons Why the Crucifixion Story Makes No Sense”


This post is a response to an article entitled “10 Reasons Why the Crucifixion Story Makes No Sense” which has been posted on a variety of blogs across the internet. This response is a guest post by Jared, a high school student. If you have not read the original post, I suggest reading the two together so you can better understand Jared’s responses. We hope this sparks a thoughtful discussion about the truth of the scriptures and their account of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Friday, August 15, 2014

1 Thessalonians 4:1-8 Holy Relationships


I recently graduated from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. A theological seminary is a school where people study God.  Some become pastors, others missionaries, and others teachers. My first semester there I took a very challenging class. Our professor was an interesting teacher but the days were long. One afternoon we all looked extra sleepy and extra bored. So out of nowhere my teacher stops lecturing about God. And he says a single word. This single word got all of our attention. “Sex…”