Pastor Note #54 — The Church, Its Reason for Existing, and Its Stuff

            There is a church of my acquaintance that, a few years ago, faced a challenging problem.  The story I’m going to tell you about that church might sound to you like a fable that I’ve made up in order to teach some lesson.  But the church is a real … Continue reading

Bible Note #12 — Exodus 25:1-9

In this passage (Exodus 25:1-9), God calls on Moses to receive an offering from the people for the purpose of building and furnishing the tabernacle.  He emphasizes that the offering is to be strictly voluntary — “from everyone whose heart stirs him to give.” (v. 2; HCSB) What follows then is a list of the … Continue reading

Pastor Note #23 — Marking Time

Seasons come and go, cycling from one to the next.  Our calendars turn from one year to the next.  Time passes along, steadily, inescapably, unavoidably, relentlessly. Recently, I was sitting in the dental chair waiting for my dentist to finish with another patient across the room.  The dentist was saying something to that patient about … Continue reading

Pastor Note #21 — The Meaning of Money, the Power of Giving

  I do not think I exaggerate when I say that some of us put our offering in the plate with a kind of triumphant bounce as much as to say, “There–now God will feel better!” . . . I am obliged to tell you that God does not need anything you have.  He does … Continue reading

Pastor Note #20 — The Spiritual Exercise of Giving

So, my exercise regimen tends to change from time to time.  I am easily bored.  By switching from one thing to another – health club to high school pool to brisk walks in the neighborhood to strenuous biking.  I am currently in-between exercise programs.  I sort of like going to the gym.  Well, actually, I … Continue reading

Bible Note #5 — Deuteronomy 13:1-5

Deuteronomy 13 1 If a prophet, or one who foretells by dreams, appears among you and announces to you a miraculous sign or wonder, 2 and if the sign or wonder of which he has spoken takes place, and he says, “Let us follow other gods” (gods you have not known) “and let us worship … Continue reading

Prayer Notes #10 — Knowing and Doing

A Prayer about Knowing and Doing Father of my life, Shepherd of my soul, you have made me, and you know the purposes you have for me in this troubled life.  Raise me above the troubles and struggles, so that I may see the purpose you have for me. I won’t pretend that it is … Continue reading

Pastor Notes #5

A Prayer My Father, I want to be a man of discernment.  I want to be a man thoroughly committed to acting on your will as I discern it.  But I know that that means I must be committed to nurturing a spirit of patience and quietness in myself — a quietness that is not … Continue reading