Clergy Confessional (82) We Are Complicit

The first scripture for this coming Sunday is from Isaiah 1. The people are told to “cease evil, learn to do good, seek justice, rescue the oppressed, defend the orphan, plead for the widow.” Earlier, we hear that God is tired of our festivals and our solemn assemblies. God can no longer bear our shallowness…

Clergy Confessional (81) Stop Saying Dumb Stuff

A friend posted something on Facebook that really touched me, because it is an aspect of our culture that has always bothered me, and seems to be getting worse. Her comments focused on some of the things people say about her daughter, who has dyslexia. I have been thinking about this for a long time,…

Clergy Confessional (81) Abortion

Let me start by saying I do not like abortion, and I don’t know anyone who does. There is nobody that is “pro-abortion”. I personally thought of my children as people as soon as I knew I would be a father. I saw their pictures, heard their heartbeats, fell in love with them – and…

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 (76) Taking God’s Name in Vain

I grew up believing that the 3rd Commandment was about bad language – profanity combined with God or Jesus. It may be – I wasn’t there when it was given – but I think there is something more to this than that. Some versions use the word “misuse”. I think this is more accurate. But…

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…