Monthly Archives: March 2014

Jesus’ Baptism and Ours: I should be baptized by you

In both Matthew and Luke, John the Baptist protests Jesus’ request to be baptized. “I need to be baptized by you. And do you come to me?” We understand John’s reluctance. Jesus seems to us an unlikely candidate for a … Continue reading

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Jesus’ baptism and ours: the importance of asking the right question

In my last post, I suggested that Jesus’ baptism is a model for our own. We are baptized for the same reasons he was. This is not an obvious statement for most of us, since we think baptism is primarily … Continue reading

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The Baptism of Jesus and Ours

It’s been awhile since I’ve seen one, but in the days of my youth it was not uncommon to see behind the pulpit a baptistry with a painted scene of the Jordan River. I had no need of such a … Continue reading

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Richard Beck Coming to Streaming, Oct 9-11

It’s a great deal in life when one of your favorite people turns out to be someone you get to work with from time-to-time. Richard Beck is one of those guys for me. We were colleagues at Abilene Christian University … Continue reading

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Better Than Compromise

Sometimes compromise is good and productive. Sometimes its like kissing your sister (to be clear, I don’t have a sister, but I think I know what is meant by this colloquialism).  A community can’t function without a compromise every now … Continue reading

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Why your church should pay for your minister’s education

In recruiting students for our master’s program, the number one reason students give for not pursuing graduate ministry training is that they don’t want to rack up more debt. What they’re telling me is that they are still paying on … Continue reading

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Loving as Knowing and thoughts about ministry preparation

What if theology were about God, not just the history of ideas about God? And what if ministry training was about pursuing God and not just knowing things about God or acquiring skills related to the public tasks of ministry? … Continue reading

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Three Smooth Stones: Am I Making Ministry too Complex?

So, I’ve had an imaginary dialogue partner as I’ve written the last three posts on action-reflection-articulation, managing polarities, and myth and parable. And this imaginary partner says, “Hey, smarty pants. You don’t have to know any of these things to … Continue reading

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Three Smooth Stones: Myth and Parable

Anderson and Foley’s outstanding book, Mighty Stories, Dangerous Rituals, brought clarity to my work as a minister in ways few other books have. In it, they argue that narrative and ritual are primal ways that humans make meaning. In other … Continue reading

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Three Smooth Stones: Managing Polarities

Nearly a decade ago, I started collaborating with Pat Keifert, a theology prof at Luther Seminary and president of Church Innovations, and a leading voice in the missional church conversation. Part of that collaboration includes consulting work in a process … Continue reading

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