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Guest editorial: It’s chaos: Christian moral pluralism in America today

Guest editorial: The chaos of Christian moral pluralism today

Recently, I have had two conversations that reveal the incredible breadth of moral pluralism not just in America, but in the Christian population of America.

       
Down Home: Names, faces, a huge ‘family’ & embarrassment

Down Home: Names, faces, a huge ‘family’ & embarrassment

I’m so grateful God Almighty knows each of our names, even if I forget a few sometimes.

       
Right or Wrong? Ecclesiastes, vanity and paradox

Right or Wrong? Ecclesiastes, vanity and paradox

Someone mentioned we should interpret Ecclesiastes through paradox, which I’ve heard regarding Jesus’ teaching. How do I use paradox to interpret Scripture?

       
2nd Opinion: Church ministry is like growing potatoes on Mars

2nd Opinion: Church ministry is like growing potatoes on Mars

During a conversation about the changes and challenges of church work, Bill Wilson, director of the Center for Healthy Churches, made a comment that summarized thoughts simmering in my mind. He said, “Ministry in the 21st century is like growing potatoes on Mars.”

       
Guest editorial: ‘Anything less than God’s vision is inadequate’

Guest editorial: ‘Anything less than God’s vision is inadequate’

Seeing Jesus is a powerful image in the New Testament. But for up to 80 percent of all congregations, God’s vision eludes them.

       
Down Home: Give God room to work, even on the patio

Down Home: Give God room to work, even on the patio

“You know, you could just take ’em down,” Joanna told me, demonstrating yet again my wife is both smarter and more practical than I.

       
Right or Wrong? Irrelevant outreach

Right or Wrong? Irrelevant outreach

When we discuss outreach, we describe why people have marginal connection to our church. But we almost never talk about issues common to all people, much less what to do about them. Does our approach diminish the gospel?

       
Right or Wrong? Planning for Sucession

Right or Wrong? Planning for Sucession

A speaker at a leadership conference advised, “On your first day on the job, begin laying the groundwork for your successor.” I’m still trying to understand how this applies to ministers. Can you help me?

       
2nd Opinion: Are denominational bodies doomed?

2nd Opinion: Are denominational bodies doomed?

We are witnessing the beginning of the end for Baptist denominational entities as we have known them. Following the lead of mainline judicatories, Baptist bodies—local, state, regional and national—are in free-fall.

       
Down Home: Diana Garland—force of nature, role model, friend

Down Home: Diana Garland—force of nature, role model, friend

When Diana Garland arrived at Baylor University in 1997, a Texas Baptist asked me to describe her. Three words jumped to mind. Force. Of. Nature.

       
Down Home: Why use a real word

Down Home: Why use a real word when a made-up word will do?

Hanging out with little kids will expand your vocabulary. My grandson, Ezra, recently reminded me of the word-warping, lexicon-lengthening, expression-expanding power of childhood imagination.

       
Right or Wrong? Listen to detractors

Right or Wrong? Listen to detractors

Right or wrong? A consultant suggested a church should listen only to positive, encouraging people.  Can’t churches learn from both encouragers and discouragers?

       
2nd Opinion: The Bible ties freedom to debt relief; Americans should too

2nd Opinion: The Bible ties freedom to debt relief; we should too

Few visitors to Philadelphia’s famous Liberty Bell know the inscription “Proclaim liberty throughout the land and unto all the inhabitants thereof” is a reference to God’s instructions for a “jubilee,” in which he commanded the Israelites to free their slaves and return property to its original owner every 50 years.

       
Right or Wrong? Hostile communication

Right or Wrong? Hostile communications

No matter the topic, only the shrillest, most extreme voices seem to be heard. How can we find common ground for reasonable, reconciling conversations, especially in our congregations?

       
Down Home: Gratitude, respect—and prayer—for Jimmy Carter

Down Home: Gratitude, respect—and prayer—for Jimmy Carter

If Americans chiseled a Mount Rushmore to honor their greatest ex-presidents, surely Jimmy Carter’s face would dominate the panorama.

       
 
 
 
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