Disciples of Jesus Need God’s Word

As followers of Jesus we are disciples—students, learners, apprentices. That’s who we are. As disciples, God’s Word is essential for us. The Bible has long played a vital role in my life. But since the stroke, it seems to be even more important. Here are some verses that have impacted me lately … God is … Read more

A Prayer for General Conference 2019

Delegates from around the world for the United Methodist Church’s General Conference will meet in a special session to address the church’s position related to human sexuality, particularly disagreements about same-sex marriage and ordination of LGBTQ clergy. This is my prayer as delegates convene February 23-26, 2019. O God, thank you for all you are … Read more

A Prayer From the Psalms

Last summer (2017), I participated in a community prayer for Brody, a 6 year-old from Centre Grove. I decided to draft a prayer completely from the Psalms. I trust this prayer be will helpful for all who experience trials! Psalm 27.7-97 Lord, listen to my voice when I cry out—have mercy on me and answer … Read more

“Wild Goose Chase”

On summer vacation, I read Wild Goose Chase by Mark Batterson. Batterson is one of my favorite writers and I love this book! The title for the book comes from the name Celtic Christians have for the Holy Spirit, the Wild Goose. It denotes adventure. Batterson makes clear, “nothing is more unnerving or disorienting than … Read more

My Stroke

I suffered a stroke on September 19 around 10:00 p.m. It happened very quickly. I was pretty calm, but I didn’t know what was going to happen. At the time, I was frustrated I wasn’t able to tell my family, including my kids who had gotten out of bed, that I loved them, possibly for … Read more

P.R.A.Y. God’s Word!

I have a prayer idiosyncrasy, which I’ve written about before, where I pray laps around the church sanctuary. I often use the acronym, P.R.A.Y., to guide my prayer at the church. P.R.A.Y. stands for Praise, Repent, Ask, and Yield. Several months ago, I felt led to ramp up my praying. So, I prayed more laps. … Read more

Shaping a Discipleship Culture

I recently had the honor of leading a workshop at the 3D Discipleship event held in Williamsport, PA. The event was sponsored by Growing Effective Churches of the Susquehanna Conference of the UMC. Here are some of my notes from the workshop. Centre Grove’s Story I shared a little about what God has been doing … Read more

Sabbatical Reflections

My last post shared hopes and plans for our summer sabbatical. We are grateful to God and to our congregations for the gift of this time! Sabbaticals are often called “renewal leaves.” And, this time was certainly important for our renewal both as pastors and as followers of Jesus! During our sabbatical, our main goal … Read more

Sabbatical Growth Plan

As I shared recently, Joleen and I are both taking a short-term sabbatical (one month, plus two weeks of vacation). We’re seeking physical and spiritual renewal and growth in ministry leadership. Physical & Spiritual Renewal Spiritual health is vitally important. Lance Witt, in his book, Replenish (see my post), argues, “We have neglected the fact … Read more

10 Years of One-Point Preaching

Ten years ago, I made a big change in my preaching approach, switching from multiple-point preaching to one-point preaching. I did so in June 2006 after reading the first couple chapters in Communicating for a Change by Andy Stanley and Lane Jones. It’s hard to believe it’s been ten years. In 2007, I wrote my … Read more