Showing posts from September, 2012

Our Deepest Need

I’ve been a teacher all of my adult life.I love to learn; I love to teach.One of the questions that good teachers always ask themselves is whether or not the student has really learned.“If no one has learned, have you really taught anything?”
There are some really smart people who never spent a day in a college classroom.And, believe it or not, there are plenty of folks with graduate degrees who can’t do some of the simplest things.
One of my most challenging assignments as a college professor was to teach a class on worship technology.Anyone who knows me well knows that I’m not a techie.Don’t let the PowerPoint presentations fool you.I know just enough to be dangerous.Ask me to teach piano improvisation from chord sheets and I’m your guy.Teaching students to conceptualize and craft a worship service?It’s one of the joys of my life.But when it came to teaching sound s…

Can You Love Jesus and Not the Church?

Adapted from my sermon on Labor Day weekend, 2012.Thematic influence from Eugene Peterson in Practice Resurrection.
When I was a kid, there would be a good chance that my family would be in church on Labor Day weekend.You could probably label me, “a child of the church.”If the doors were open, we were probably there.There wasn’t any question whether or not we would be going to church on Sunday.We always did.Pretty remarkable for two parents who didn’t come from Christian homes.
I’ve got a hunch that since this is Labor Day weekend and you are here that a good lot of you grew up the same way.But it’s not that way with everyone.In fact, more and more so-called Christians are distancing themselves from the institutional church.In the surprising blockbuster book, The Shack, the Christ character declares that he doesn’t really like religion and he didn’t create an institution.Jesus, in The Shack narrative, claims the visible church is only a man-made system.The real church is “al…