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no quick fix

Bandaid Christianity

Here’s the thing about Christianity: The charge has been primarily led by men. Pastors, mostly males, set most of what we believe about God and the Christian life. Unfortunately, men tend to be fixers. We don’t like things we can’t hammer, tighten, or duct tape. We like the quick fix.

But life doesn’t really work that way. Yes, there are stories of people being healed immediately. Some people have found freedom from their vices through instant change. However, the majority of us have to continually fight and work at the Christian life. That’s actually the norm.

And there aren’t really simply solutions to the big questions we ask of God. “Why did this happen?” That’s a big question that doesn’t have any easy answer. (more…)


It’s Time Christians Pray for Injustice

How many here love justice? Looking around the room, I see every hand raised. Justice feels good, doesn’t it? Christians like when things are fair.

But here’s the thing: Scripture never called us to love justice. In fact, it tells us to love mercy instead. We are supposed to act in justice, but we aren’t called to pray for it.

I’ve been reading in the Bible the scenes where the Israelites brazenly disobey God in the wilderness. They even complain about their leader, Moses. Then God talks to Moses and tells him how much he wants to destroy the people. It’s justice that they be destroyed for rebelling against Moses and against God. But Moses asks for God’s mercy. (more…)

God can use you to defeat giants

The Giants Will Be Defeated

You know that big struggle in your life? The one you might be afraid to battle because it appears to be a giant? Maybe it’s something that seems impossible. Well, if you don’t defeat that giant, somebody else will. God is determined to defeat giants in the world. But you get to decide if he’ll use you to do it or somebody else.

I was reading in the Bible where the Israelites were wandering in the wilderness. Moses sent twelve spies to scout out the land they were to occupy. They came back afraid of the giants in the land.

I’d never made the mental connection that these giants who descended from Anak might be the same family that eventually spawned Goliath. But it turns out, it was the same family. (more…)


Discover Your Opportunity for Growth

Was talking to a friend who’s self-employed. I asked him how he’s doing financially, and he said he wasn’t making as much money as he’d like. Granted, I don’t know if anyone makes as much money as they’d like. But he had a specific figure he felt would be a comfortable income for him and his family.

So I asked him: How would you be able to get to that number? More clients? Higher per-hour rate? More consultation jobs?

It’s an important question, because if he’s working 40 hours a week and not making enough money, more clients won’t help him. More consultation jobs won’t help because he doesn’t have the extra time without sacrificing family time. For him, a higher per-hour rate would be the only way to make more money. So I suggested something to him. (more…)

lifes message

The One Thing that Should Be at the Top of Everyone’s Bucket List

The bucket list is a fun concept. It’s all the things you want to do before you die. It’s a cool way to focus your priorities so you make the most of every minute of your life—especially as you’re getting older.

But to be honest, it feels a bit silly sometimes. Yes, seeing the Taj Mahal before you die is pretty cool. But I don’t know that it will really matter once you die. I have a feeling that in heaven, we won’t care so much about our earthly experiences. Or if we do, we can just take a glimpse at it whenever we want. Much less, I doubt it will matter to those we love that we got to see the Taj Mahal before we died.

So I get the bucket list, but at the same time I feel like it’s pretty short-sighted. I do see one sort of thing that should be on a good bucket list, though. And I think putting this at the top of the list will make all the other stuff matter more. (more…)


Are You Innovating in Your Life?

The world’s big into innovation nowadays. We celebrate the innovators. But I believe a lot of what we call innovation is just good design.

You see; innovation needs to help us do something we previously couldn’t do, or at least do it in a different way than we previously were able. So making a different-shaped phone isn’t innovation, it’s just design.

I think of the perfect example of the cell phone. The cell phone was an innovation. But for years, we merely made different designs. Then the iPhone comes on the scene and we’re able to do so much more with a phone. It changes the game because it’s an innovation. (more…)

coming to jesus

There is Hope in a Messed Up Church

I felt uncomfortable writing that headline, and I feel a bit uncomfortable writing this blog post. But I’ve come this far, so I’m finishing it.

I work in the church industry. That sentence by itself is a bit uncomfortable, because the church was never intended to be an industry. “Worship music” makes about 40 million dollars each year just from the churches who pay to sing worship songs in their congregation. That doesn’t even take into account album sales and live concerts.

And one of the leading causes of church splits is over preferences…someone thinks the church should sing country songs while someone else thinks they should sing rock songs. Then we get into a squabble over the musical accompaniment to songs like “Beloved, Let Us Love One Another”. (more…)


Don’t Let Fear Win

I almost let fear win last Monday. It looks like an issue of Sunday| Mag I’ve been counting on won’t be happening, and I had nothing for October 1st.

The thing you need to know about Sunday| Mag is this: each month, I have to come up with twelve unique article ideas. Then I have to assign those articles to twelve different writers, and give them two weeks to finish the project. Then I assign twelve articles to artists to design graphics…with a two week deadline for each of those too. I get each article, once they’re turned in, edited by a team of four editors. Then I have to lay them out and prepare everything to publish. (more…)


The Zombie Faces I See on My Run

A few mornings each week, I go for a run on a trail by my house. I have to do it early if I want to escape without having lost half my body weight in sweat.

And on my way back from the run, I walk on a busy road where people are driving to work. I always laugh at the faces I see in the car. The sun’s at just the right angle where it’s streaming into their eyes. Plus, it’s early morning so everyone looks exhausted. They look like zombies.

I laugh at their faces, then I take it as a reminder how lucky I am that I get to walk back home, shower, then do something I love at my home. I don’t have to have that miserable look on my face going to a job I hate, because I’m an entrepreneur—yes, that’s smugness you read in my words. And I’m sorry. (more…)

baiting the hook

It’s Free! (With a Catch)

I had the privilege of joining a man from Mexico on a podcast last week. He interviewed me about some of my projects for churches and how to infuse creativity into a church that might be resistant to such things.

On these podcasts, I’m an open book. Everything I know that I think could be remotely helpful…I spill it. I’ve been a believer in this concept ever since I read Rework. In the book, they recommend that every company should share every one of their secrets. It’s sort of a Bobby Flay approach. Being known for his chef skills, you’d think he would want to guard his secrets so he can stay on top. But instead he gives it all away, and that’s further solidified his expertise in everyone’s mind. It’s counter-intuitive, but I believe it works. (more…)