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Showing posts from August, 2013

Bitter about Church

I've said, here and elsewhere, that my church does pastoral care in worship as well as any church I've encountered.  I'm not trying to say we get the worship experience right; there are lots of questions that come with "worship" in large, attractional churches like mine.  But, we do give people permission, opportunity, and space to deal with their pain, struggles, and anxieties in the presence of God and his people.  

A few weeks ago, I got to be part of such an experience.  I'm still hearing from people who were impacted in that worship service.  I think, in part, that's because I addressed an issue our church hasn't addressed much before--being bitter about church.

You can come to our church and deal with depression, bankruptcy, divorce, addiction, abortion, and your relationship with your mother.  Our church provides opportunities for you to address these issues in one-on-one meetings with pastors and even on Sunday mornings.

We take care of people wh…

From Ruin to Redemption

Yesterday I got to preach at church about Naomi's journey from ruin to redemption.  You can watch the service here.  As Beth Stoddard, Creative Arts Director, and I planned the service via Google chat last Monday, it was clear that God was at work.  He gave Beth and me a unified vision of what the service would look and feel like.  A talented team of musicians and a young actress I'm very fond of pulled off our vision with passion and humility.  God worked in and through us yesterday, and that's a mysterious honor that continues to surprise me.

In the past 24 hours, I've heard from lots of people.  The support and encouragement have been overwhelming, and I thank you.  The stories of hurt, grief, and bitterness have burdened my heart, and I am grateful for being entrusted with them.  Yesterday I got to hug a girl who was bitter toward me; we both cried, and redemption was realized.  I got to hug my friend, Lori, and finally try to thank her for the difference she made i…