This post is based on a presentation made at the ACW Regional Retreat in September 2020. Are Spiritual Disciplines really that important? Why are Spiritual Disciplines important? Is not believing in Jesus enough? Are disciplines just a form of works righteousness, some mistaken attempt to earn our salvation? Do we really need to worry about … More Are Disciplines Necessary?
This article first appeared at http://www.medium.com/ministrymatters It’s been over two months of lock downs, isolation, physical distancing, and mask-wearing. Depending on where you live, you may be facing this for the foreseeable future. For myself, I have long moved past my initial bouts of irritation. Being unable to run down to the local mall and … More O Blessed Boredom: Isolation and the dethronement of idols
This post first appeared in “Ministry Matters” under the title: “Discernment: it’s not just pointing at random verses” on Medium.com Whenever we aspire to live the Christian life with any intentionality, an inevitable question arises. How do I know what God wants me to do? How do I know I am making the right decisions? … More The Way of Discernment
In December of 2019, the Seattle Times noted that sales of daily planners and organizers rose to a whopping revenue of $386 million. And this was just for the planners themselves – the books of blank pages and organizational spaces. Sales of planner accessories is a whole other matter. The stickers, the insets, the bookmarks … More A Rule of Life: A Happy-Plan for Christian Living
A few months ago, I wrote a blog entitled “When Words Speak”, which detailed five books that helped inform my faith. It was a pleasure to go through my library and note the books to which I continually return. The spiritual lessons I gleaned from their pages have largely shaped the outward expression of my … More Take up and Read: Exploring Spiritual Reading
The Desert Fathers and Mothers have been a continuous wealth of spiritual knowledge and insight, their teachings passed down in various volumes and compendiums. One lesson has been particularly popularized. As the story goes; a monastic brother went to Abba Moses and asked for a word of advice regarding the cultivation of a robust spiritual … More Away and Towards: Cultivating Solitude in a time of Isolation
This article first appeared as an article for The Anglican Church of Canada at https://medium.com/ministrymatters/discovering-lament-why-crying-out-to-god-may-be-good-for-our-souls-23cf60ccfe3a. While out for a walk with my family the other day, we came across another family, also out for a stroll. Mom and Dad were following their two small daughters, each on bright pink bikes with streamers. As we approached … More Lamentations: Recovering a forgotten discipline.
The English poet and Anglican priest, John Donne, once penned that ‘No man [sic] is an island, entire unto itself; every man [sic] is piece of the continent.’ In this phrase, Donne is highlight an important reality for our lives; we exist amid a myriad of relationships. In fact, if we look at scripture, we … More Toward a Common Spiritual Life: Morning Prayer
Yesterday was Ash Wednesday, heralding the beginning of Lent. Typically, this liturgical season involves adopting a devotional activity to mark one’s observance. Often, this involves some type of fasting. We ‘give-up’ something for the 40 days of Lent. What are we to give up? Well, that’s the question. Too easily does Lent become a time … More Is Lent really just about treats?
Let me begin with a question: What is the goal of the Christian life? What does committing one’s self to Jesus point us toward? The possible answers are numerous. Some could say ‘Worship’; the Christian life is to be a life of perpetual praise to God. Others might say ‘Heaven’; the Christian life here on … More Have we misunderstood the Church?