Category: My Real-Life Adventures

  • With Gratitude for Five Years as a Pastor

    The five-year anniversary of my ordination as a Minister of the Word and Sacrament, or Teaching Elder, in the Presbyterian Church (USA) was yesterday. I’ve been a pastor for five years now. It barely seems possible. Not just that it’s been five years, but that I’m a pastor at all. It’s something I wanted to…

  • Who I Am Is Learning to Love Who I’ve Been

    Last week I wrote a story for my Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) group about “The Day My Heart Was Broken” about the day my first girlfriend broke up with me. When I wrote that story, I was very unkind about the things I did that I thought made her do it. I listed out the…

  • Reflections from the Gay Christian Network Conference

    Last weekend, I was privileged to attend the Gay Christian Network Conference. It was a very moving experience. Here are some of my takeaways. Worship Worship at GCN was… unexpected. I used to attend services with GCN-like worship, with the band on the stage and the lights and the projected song lyrics written in this century. I…

  • Charity is not a Substitute for Justice

    It was the same summer that Trust and Obedience Landed Me in Hell – and the same camp. I’d worked out in the sun that summer with my little sister to make enough money to pay for all that was to be had at Camp Kanesatake. The day of the lesson about charity, my fellow campers…

  • Are We Called to be “On Fire”?

    A few years back somebody described me as being “on fire for God.”  I was surprised. Me, “on fire for God?” But I was just me! Apparently I was, though. It showed. I read a book by Eric Ludy once in which he wrote about talking to an older Christian about his fiery passion and…

  • I Know Where The Land Mines Are

    I have inhabited the Christian world for the better part of three decades. It’s a beautiful place. And it is also terribly dangerous. Charlatans host TV shows to raise money for private jets from people who can’t afford their own groceries. Fundamentalists believe they take the Bible literally. They dismiss anyone who disproves their bizarre…

  • The Wall I Built Against the Monster-God

    The chapel at Jumonville is a special place. That’s what my friend Drew says, and I think he’s right. Last Saturday I walked in a hardened skeptic and walked out believing just a little more. I was waiting for Kristen and her sister to get back from Ohiopyle. I felt drawn to the chapel. I…

  • The Double Standard of Anti-Intellectualism

    Within the past week or so, I’ve had two conversations during which someone accused me of trying to prove I’m smarter than other people. It puzzled me. The first was a conversation about evolution on my dad’s Facebook wall – a conversation that began with his statement, “I do not understand how anyone with any intelligence can believe in…

  • Sponsoring Missionaries

    Sponsoring Missionaries

    As I mentioned in a previous post, one time during our family devotions, my father read us Tortured for His Faith by Haralan Popov. I read Tortured for Christ by Richard Wurmbrand on my own time. We learned a lot about persecuted Christians in other countries and came to appreciate how God had blessed us in the US…

  • Hurts Me More Than You: A Post about Spanking

    I submitted a draft of this post to the Homeschoolers Anonymous “Hurts Me More Than You” Series, which you should all read, but I wanted to share it here as well. I got spanked a lot growing up. Sometimes once a day, sometimes more often. Spanking was a legacy handed down by grandparents on both sides,…