Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Who knew...

...that I was an amillenialist! (see below.) The scripture passage I am preaching on this week is Mark 13:1-8. This text is somewhat apocalyptic in nature. I have been doing some really interesting reading on the subject. My plan in preaching this passage is to share what we, as followers of Jesus who are of a Wesleyan bent, understand about 'end times.' In my research, I came across this little quiz. Here is how I scored:

You scored as Amillenialist. Amillenialism believes that the 1000 year reign is not literal but figurative, and that Christ began to reign at his ascension. People take some prophetic scripture far too literally in your view.



Moltmannian Eschatology








Left Behind




What's your eschatology?
created with QuizFarm.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006


...but not a substantial post. I enjoyed these, maybe you will too. I believe they are from Community Christian Church.

christian v. christ-follower…

(ht to marko)

Caution: Man at Work...maybe

I had fully intended on putting up a post saying I probably wouldn't be doing much substantial blogging over the next few weeks because I am working on writing my papers for ordination. But then I was reading through some blogs and came across a friend's post that struck something in me which I felt I had to express (see my post below.) Of course my wife would probably wonder when I have ever felt the urge NOT to express myself!

The timing of these posts are rather ironic because just today I was working on my papers where one of the questions was - How would you describe the nature and mission of the church? Let's just say my response did not contain quite as much uncertainty as the post below.

Anyhow, I may or may not post much over the next few weeks. We'll see how my papers go.

Reflections on the work of a friend...

NOTE: Before reading this I feel I must make a disclaimer (this comes from my fear of being misunderstood) The following post is a part of my grappling with the mission and nature of the church. I do believe that the church is something that God has put on this earth to be the incarnation of Jesus, meaning it is a divine institution and we get to participate in it. That said, I am working through some cynicism about the way we have chosen to live out that institution. (i.e. denominations, doctrine, etc.) My fear is that we have mistaken the means for the end. In other words, rather than focus on Jesus and the kingdom of God he proclaimed and pointed us to, many have chosen to focus on the church as the end. Currrently, I understand the church to be the means through which the prayer is to be answered "thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven." However, right now I am grappling with whether or not we are really being the means to that end or not." Clear as mud? Good. Consider the following and please comment your thoughts or ideas. I would love some good discussion on this.

I invite you to take a look at this post from my good friend, Jim. I think sometimes its easier to see Jesus in real life stories than in the institution of the church. (Which ideally is supposed to be the incarnation of Jesus in the world.) I believe Jim's story is a good illustration of missional - going out into the world and living like Jesus. (I'm not saying this is necessarily Jim's intent, but this is my interpretation of what he's doing.) The sacrificial love Jim is demonstrating will have more impact on those students than any number of talks they would hear at most church youth groups.

This is something I wrestle with as a clergyperson in the western church, more specifically a main-line denomination. I spend a majority of my week preparing for a worship service where Christians gather sing some songs, say some prayers, read Scripture and hear a sermon and hopefully by the power of the Holy Spirit encounter a taste of the living God. Am I helping others to follow Jesus with reckless abandon by living the full lives of selflessness and service that Jesus calls us to? Or am I just helping people to "self-medicate" with their Sunday morning dose of religion that helps them make it through the week, but does not lead to the transformed life to which Jesus calls us? (I hope that no-one from the board of ordained ministry is reading this!) Moreover, am I leading that transformed life as a follower of Jesus or am I "hiding" in my office preparing my sermons, staying safe behind the "title" of pastor?

I guess time will tell. Check back in a year. If the church I am serving is the same or a smaller or bigger version of what it is today, then we'll know the answer. In the mean time - Jim, keep up the amazing work. I admire you and thank you for being Jesus to those kids.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Good Times...

Quality time with family is always good. I had a great time with my dad, brother. Here's a pic from the weekned.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Its What We Do...

Today and tomorrow I am in New York visiting my dad. Visits with Dad are filled with projects working on his house. That's what we do. Some fathers and sons work on cars or watch football together. We do home improvement. (Tim Allen eat your heart out!)

For me these home improvement projects are good bonding time. We get to do something together that we both enjoy. I get to learn new things from him. We play with cool power tools. This is manly stuff...and memories I will cherish.