A Prayer for the Tennessee General Assembly

I was asked to offer the opening prayer for the March 25, 2019 gathering of the Tennessee General Assembly by Representative Bill Beck, who represents the district where both my home and church are located. Gracious God,    Creator of all things,    whose steadfast love is everlasting,    we gather tonight as a people … Continue reading A Prayer for the Tennessee General Assembly

Do we really care about the future?

(c) Can Stock Photo / HPW We sat around the table one night, the appointed leaders of the congregation that I served at the time, considering our future. Attendance had dropped from its high point in the 1950’s and while the rate of decline had flattened, we were faced with a church that was rapidly … Continue reading Do we really care about the future?

A United Methodist pastor’s perspective on a pastoral transition

I think most of the world has seen my Facebook post from yesterday in which I announced that I am being appointed to serve as the Sr. Pastor of the City Road Chapel United Methodist Church in Madison, TN. In that statement, I acknowledged that I had thought at the beginning of the week that … Continue reading A United Methodist pastor’s perspective on a pastoral transition

Emergent 10 Years After: A United Methodist Perspective

As I’ve been reading Phyllis Tickle’s new book Emergence Christianity: What It Is, Where It Is Going, and Why It Matters in preparation for the conference of the same name in Memphis which begins tomorrow, I’ve been reflecting on the past 10+ years of involvement on the periphery of the emerging church movement (if that … Continue reading Emergent 10 Years After: A United Methodist Perspective

A blatant plug for a friend…Interview with Rachel Held Evans

What I’ve loved about my experiences with UMC churches so far is that each one has been different than the last. Once I spoke to a UMC church plant that met in a theater and was comprised primarily of young adults under 40. Another time, I preached at a UMC church in which most of … Continue reading A blatant plug for a friend…Interview with Rachel Held Evans

A Letter to Tony Jones from a United Methodist

This morning emergent guru and bomb-thrower Tony Jones used Bishop Willimon's latest UMR commentary as a justification for shutting down the United Methodist Church. He suggested that all young clergy should get out while the getting is good: I just hope that enough of you young UMC clergy have the temerity to stand up and … Continue reading A Letter to Tony Jones from a United Methodist

Fat Tuesday

Fat Tuesday,an odd descriptor for a man closer to 300 pounds than 200,the Tuesday before--     before sorrow,     before sobriety,     before repentance,     before reflection.On Tuesday, all is right with the world     (so we think),     Carnival,     Mardi Gras,     and the revelry that comes with them. But with the changing of the hour at midnight,     from the Tuesday … Continue reading Fat Tuesday