In the Arena. Lesson 6—The Full Armor of God, Part 1

In our journey in the theme of In the Arena, we’ve completed our study of I Cor. 16:13, 14 and now turn our attention to a new topic, an extremely relevant passage for us: Eph. 6:10-18. “Put on the full armor of God…” We all have challenges on numerous levels these days, but ultimately, the […]

In the Arena. Lesson 6—The Full Armor of God, Part 1
In the Arena. Lesson 5— Do Everything in Love

In the Arena. Lesson 5— Do Everything in Love

In the past few posts, we have focused our attention on I Cor. 16:13. To recap what we’ve uncovered for men in the arena, facing challenges that surround us: Be on your guard— be vigilant; above all else guard your heart Stand firm in the faith— be resolute; place your trust in the name of […]

In the Arena. Lesson 3— Stand Firm in the Faith

As men In the Arena, our theme verses in this blog series this spring are: “Be on your guard, Stand firm in the faith, Be men of courage, Be strong. Do everything in love.” I Cor. 16:13, 14 Our message this week focuses on the 2nd phrase in verse 13, “Stand firm in the faith.” […]

In the Arena. Lesson 3— Stand Firm in the Faith
“Do You Truly Love Me?”

“Do You Truly Love Me?”

Years ago I had a personal encounter with a passage from Scripture unlike any I’d had before. I realize that sounds dramatic. All I can say is, it’s the truth. In addition, it has a message for us in our current socially-isolated, safely-distanced world. In 1990 I was working at a terrific mission agency which […]

“It’s shocking. It’s awful. It’s tragic. There’s hope.”

Those were my words when the first accusations against Bill Hybels, founder and senior pastor of Willow Creek, came out in the Chicago Tribune and Christianity Today last spring. My words were in response to a group of men who asked how it felt for me, knowing I had served on staff at the church for four years in the 1990’s.

Those words still hold true for me today; they are just stronger. As weeks have gone by more women have courageously stepped forward to reveal shocking stories of harassment, intimidation and inappropriate behavior they say they experienced from Hybels. He still denies the accusations and the elders are now re-investigating the claims, after months of their own denials and unkind characterizations against the women.

“It’s shocking. It’s awful. It’s tragic. There’s hope.”
What “No” Doesn’t Mean

What “No” Doesn’t Mean

It’s taken me quite awhile to learn this lesson. I now know it’s true.

Wisdom from Seth Godin:

What “no” means

I’m too busy
I don’t trust you
This isn’t on my list
My boss won’t let me
I’m afraid of moving this forward
I’m not the person you think I am
I don’t have the resources you think I do
I’m not the kind of person that does things like this
I don’t want to open the door to a long-term engagement
Thinking about this will cause me to think about other things I just don’t want to deal with

What it doesn’t mean:

Bias From the Bottom

Author Richard Rohr makes an intriguing observation about the uniqueness of biblical authors versus most authors:

“The vast majority of people throughout history has been poor, disabled, or oppressed in some way (i.e., “on the bottom”) and would have experienced history in terms of a need for change. The people who wrote the books and controlled the social institutions, however, have almost always been the comfortable people on the top. Much of history has been recorded from the side of the winners, except for the unique revelation of the Bible, which is an alternative history from the bottom: from the side of the enslaved, the dominated, the oppressed, and the poor, culminating in the scapegoat figure of Jesus himself.

Bias From the Bottom