When God’s presence is gone – Ezekiel 1, Part 1

Think about the last time you encountered the presence of God.  When was it?  How did it happen?  In a worship service singing a song?  In Bible study?  In nature?  Maybe at a youth retreat around a campfire?  Now think about how long has it been since you encountered the presence of God?  Maybe aContinue reading “When God’s presence is gone – Ezekiel 1, Part 1”

Are you experiencing the dark night of the soul? – Ezekiel 1, Preview

Does God seem distant to you? Ethereal? Maybe even a mirage or a fiction? Many people feel that way and wonder if something is wrong with them. Many feel guilt or shame when they have doubts about God. They wish they had a closer relationship with God. They wish their experience of God was moreContinue reading “Are you experiencing the dark night of the soul? – Ezekiel 1, Preview”

What’s coming up on the blog: a study through one of the most bizarre books of the Bible – Introducing Ezekiel, Preview

If you’ve followed this blog, you might have noticed that my normal pattern is to blog through a book in one testament, and then move to a book in the other testament. (The blog actually follows along with what I’m preaching in my role of pastor of Faith Church in Lancaster, PA. I preach theContinue reading “What’s coming up on the blog: a study through one of the most bizarre books of the Bible – Introducing Ezekiel, Preview”

How to show hospitality – Colossians 4:7-18, Part 2

Editor’s Note: This week I welcome David Hundert on the blog. David is an MDiv student and member of Faith Church. He preaches for me 3-4 times each year when I am away, and this past week I was my denomination’s national conference. Thank you, David! Is hospitality just for hotels, restaurants, spas…or hospitals? CanContinue reading “How to show hospitality – Colossians 4:7-18, Part 2”

How to speak graciously [even when you don’t want to] – Colossians 4:2-6, Part 5

I recently heard a story from a Mennonite pastor in my local ministerium.  Nearly 25 years ago, his wife tragically passed away.  One year before she passed away, she made the decision to discontinue wearing the traditional Mennonite head covering for women.  After she died, he got lots of support, but he also got twoContinue reading “How to speak graciously [even when you don’t want to] – Colossians 4:2-6, Part 5”

The transforming power of gratitude – Colossians 4:2-6, Part 3

Do you ever feel like, as a parent, you are running your own private family Uber? The kids call or text, and you pick them up from practice. You drive them to events, to their friends’ houses, and all over. Or did you ever get a call like this: “Dad, practice finished early, so canContinue reading “The transforming power of gratitude – Colossians 4:2-6, Part 3”

How to live your retirement years “as unto the Lord” – Colossians 3:22-4:1, Part 5

Christian…how are you thinking about your retirement years?  The principle we’ve been studying this week, “work unto the Lord,” holds for retirement, even though in retirement you are no longer working a job.  This principle can guide you as you retire if you answer the question: What is a distinctly Christian view of retirement?  HowContinue reading “How to live your retirement years “as unto the Lord” – Colossians 3:22-4:1, Part 5″

4 ways to have a Kingdom mindset about work – Colossians 3:22-4:1

What will help both students and teachers, workers and bosses, retirees, volunteers and leaders to “work as unto the Lord,” is to have a Kingdom mindset about work.  There are at least four ways to view your time at work, and this goes for the students at school, as well as for the retired personsContinue reading “4 ways to have a Kingdom mindset about work – Colossians 3:22-4:1”

4 Faulty Viewpoints About Work – Colossians 3:22-4:1, Part 3

Each follower of Jesus, no matter their station in life, is called to work as unto the Lord.  Working unto the Lord means that we will avoid a faulty view of work. There are at least four faulty views to avoid. The first faulty viewpoint is when people think “working as unto the Lord” is justContinue reading “4 Faulty Viewpoints About Work – Colossians 3:22-4:1, Part 3”

The 80% rule about work (school and retirement) – Colossians 3:22-4:1

I once heard that if you are working a job that you enjoy 80% of the time, you’ve hit the employment jackpot.  Most people work jobs that don’t get close to that 80% satisfaction level, meaning that they are dissatisfied with their job more than 20% of the time.  That might sound frustrating, to thinkContinue reading “The 80% rule about work (school and retirement) – Colossians 3:22-4:1”