Clergy Confessional (79) Lazy Christianity

I don’t want to insult you, but I might, so I apologize ahead of time. Here it goes: As I consider the death of Jesus on this Good Friday in 2019, I reaffirm that God is not in control of everything. I think God is constantly nudging, whispering, hoping – but God is not controlling…

Clergy Confessional (78) When the Church Fails

One of the most frustrating things I experience as a pastor is the way we as the church deal with failure. Unlike business, we cannot seem to let go of things when they aren’t working. If you do something once, it becomes a tradition, and God help us if we change or end it! This…

Clergy Confessional (77) Time to go after White Supremacy

America was built on White Supremacy (WS) – a statement that draws anger from some people – nevertheless, it is true. A nation that gives rights to one group – white, landowning males – is by its very definition a WS nation. As we have become a “more perfect union”, we have changed much of…

Clergy Confessional (76) Why Would Anyone Go To Church?

In a recent conversation with my brilliant wife, she pointed out that the three largest denominations in America – the Roman Catholic Church, the Southern Baptist Convention, and the United Methodist Church – were having major problems. Then she asked me this – With all of this going on, why would anyone go to church?…

Clergy confessional (75) Women’s Work

The tiny church I grew up in was run almost entirely by women. Women led worship – ran meetings – taught Sunday school – they did almost everything (being the pastor would come later). My mom was a working mother – and this was in the 1960’s and beyond. I didn’t grow up with the…

Clergy Confessional (73) How the Church Lost Christmas

The Pew Research Center just released a report saying that while a small majority of Americans still celebrate a “religious” Christmas, that number is slowing dropping, and has been for some time. Really? Anyone who has been paying attention can attest to this. Churches are closing daily, and many of those still alive seem to…

Clergy Confessional (72) Act like it is Thanksgiving Every Day

When I read the local newspaper (yes – I am a dinosaur), I am often touched by the generosity of our community. On Thanksgiving – and the days that followed – I saw the many places that had meals for people in need of food. I think this is a beautiful thing – but it…

Clergy Confessional (71) Being Thankful

One of the things that makes me bristle is when people say how blessed they are. It isn’t that I don’t feel blessed – I absolutely do! My concern comes when being blessed is equated with “the good life”, and the idea that God has given you or me a good life because God prefers…