Just before I left for a trip, I did a memorial service (see my last post). I had a few hours on a international flight to reflect on the delicate balance between celebrating and mourning at a memorial service. Here are a few thoughts.
I like doing funerals. I know that’s a strange opener, but let me explain a little. Funerals provide a unique opportunity. Some Sunday mornings at our church, it’s a feat to get everyone quiet and focused to start the service. I’ve never experienced this at a funeral. When the family comes in and the minister stands behind the pulpit, typically all you can hear are a few sniffles as everyone solemnly directs their attention towards the front. … Continue reading
In the midst of a contentious discussion that doesn’t seem to be getting anywhere, have you ever had someone tell you, “You always think you’re right!” In my less sanctified moments, I have said, “Of course I do. Don’t you always think you are right?” If you thought you were wrong you would have to be a special kind of arrogant to argue for a position you don’t actually believe. People have a sense of right and wrong and are willing to quarrel to prove their rightness. The truth is, I’m not always right, but I always think I am.
This post is born out of my own heart as I process how I should think about disagreements.… Continue reading
How long has it been since you checked your phone? If you are an average user, it’s now been less than 4.3 minutes and chances are, you’ll pause reading this article for a quick glance. Whether you come back to finish or not is up for grabs. Like it or not, we live in a digital age and the devices are shaping us.
Media ecologist, T. Gordan David makes the point that a tool isn’t neutral. When you use a shovel, you have made an impact with the tool, but likewise, the tool may have made your back and shoulders sore or given you calluses.… Continue reading
Last time I posted, I made the case for preaching the next lines, not the headlines. Os Guinness wrote, “He who marries the spirit of the age soon becomes a widower.” Tracking cultural trends from the pulpit is ultimately an exhausting carousel. I’d like to make an argument for sequential exposition as the regular diet for your church. If you read my last offering on PS23, sorry for the redundancy, but for clarity let me say it again, I’m not making a case for never preaching a topic or theme. But on balance, I believe sequential exposition is the best practice.*
22 Benefits of Sequential Exposition
- You proclaim the whole counsel of God (Acts 20:27).
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I have the awesome privilege and responsibility of preaching at Sunrise Community Church. The pulpit has been adequately described as the golden ball and chain. I never thought I’d preach regularly but now I wouldn’t trade it. As for what and how I preach, I’m committed to preaching the gospel of Christ through the sequential exposition of Scripture. Thankfully, our elders and church family expect me to preach messages from the Bible. For this legacy and expectation, I’m profoundly grateful.
In the past year or so, I’ve starting a running tab (mentally until now) of all the topics I’ve been encouraged to address from the pulpit.… Continue reading