Socrates said, "The unexamined life is not worth living." This is my feeble attempt at examining my life.

Give to Caesar

Give to Caesar

One of the things that continues to surface in conversations about our culture is that of the tax exempt status of churches and Christian institutions. Earlier this spring I was sitting at a dinner where a colleague was bemoaning this coming reality. Others around the table shared the concern. They were worried that this change would significantly decrease giving and put churches out of business.

They were also worried about the property taxes that many churches would have to pay on buildings if they lost their exemption. Most church buildings are on the best property in a town. The taxes on those locations would typically be significant. However, it was decided early on in our history as a nation that churches would be exempt from paying those taxes because of their communal good. To be sure, churches still provide very good things to the community within which they exist. They probably break even with their communities.

But why all this worry? Why all this fear?

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Love Your Neighbor

Love Your Neighbor

What does it look like to love your neighbor as yourself? No seriously, what does that mean? How do we do it? How can it be lived out? Is it even possible? Ever since I became serious about following Jesus I have been struggling with this one question. I think it’s the hardest thing that we… Continue Reading

Sunday Morning…

Sunday Morning…

In the very near future my family will start doing something that I had never thought about doing. It’s an idea that my bride came up with and I think it’s absolutely brilliant. If you don’t know yet, my bride is the most brilliantest person I’ve ever known. Just recently, I wrote this about her:… Continue Reading

Can You Disagree?

Can You Disagree?

Over the last two weeks or so we have seen race and sexuality pushed into the center of the national conversation. Black churches are, quite literally, under attack. The Supreme Court has approved marriage for all sexual orientations. These are conversations that have layers and nuance. These are conversations that are gigantic. I have one… Continue Reading

So Much Noise

So Much Noise

Since I’m a pastor I’m supposed write about the Supreme Court decision on marriage. I am supposed write about the Bible. I am supposed to tell you whether or not this is God’s will. I’m not going to. Why? There’s just too much noise. Continue Reading

Not Pastoral

Not Pastoral

My beer mug at The Corner says, “The Rev” on it. I have come to realize that I’m not very “pastoral”, I’m not even sure what that really means. I have some pretty rough corners. I tease my kids. My poor wife will probably get arthritis in her neck from the daily head shaking that… Continue Reading

My Privilege

My Privilege

There are so many things that I take for granted. Every morning I go out to my driveway and I take it for granted that it will start. I take it for granted that my electricity will turn on and that the water will run in my faucets. Those are big things. I also take… Continue Reading

Presbyterian, Thank God.

Presbyterian, Thank God.

Another prominent pastor has fallen. His sin exposed to all the world to see. Media outlets are having a field day. Other pastors are having a field day. Christians devouring one another on social media is entertainment for the throngs of non-Christians who point to the lack of mercy as even more evidence against the… Continue Reading

Story

Story

One of the things that I like about living in a post-modern culture is the emphasis on story. Every person’s life is a story that is being written as they live. Communities are primarily seen as vehicles by which to share the stories of the past, the present, and dream of new stories for the… Continue Reading

Authority

Authority

I was studying Luke 20 in preparation for worship yesterday. It’s a passage that isn’t totally unfamiliar. It starts with a simple request of Jesus by the religious leaders, “Tell us by what authority you do these things, or who it is that gave you this authority.” Over and over again I realize that this is the question… Continue Reading