Archives For Life

Often, unmarried feel unwanted in the local church. The incessant marriage analogies. The awkward moment when you meet someone and have to say “actually, I don’t have any kids.” The constant guilt related to sexuality.

This BONUS VALENTINES episode is based on my blog post 7 Things Singles Need from the Church (A Valentines Post). We discuss the post as well as a TON of great responses on Facebook.

Take a listen, and, if you like it, HELP GET THE WORD OUT :)

The best way is to subscribe, and leave us a (5 Star…) review in iTunes. Telling your friends and shouting it from the mountaintops is good, too.

A new episode of Tear Gas and Gumdrops is live today!

The episode is entitled “Church Planting: A Good Thing After Lots Of Therapy.” In this episode, Kyle interviews me on why I’m out planting churches after a few tough years.

You can get the podcast here in iTunes.

The best way to get the word out is to rate us and give us a review in iTunes. If you like it, I hope you’ll take a moment to tell the world. Continue Reading…

At some point, your values will change.

This is a good thing.

When I was growing up, I was incredibly insecure and had a hard time making friends. My primary value was to avoid the shame I felt when I failed to connect with others. By focusing on avoiding the shame of connection, I grew increasingly lonely.

For years, I was embedded in churches that focused on a set of “legalisms,” specific rules that couldn’t be broken. These mainly had to do with language, dress, sexuality and how often we showed up for church. By focusing on rules, I grew rigid and judgemental.

For many churches “success” means a growing number of bodies in seats on Sundays, and a growing budget. By focusing on the numbers, churches often go to ungodly lengths to gather more people.

For fundamentalists (Christian, Muslim, Atheist, etc.) intellectual assent to core beliefs is essential to one’s identity. By focusing on right belief, fundamentalists often will excuse hurtful behavior.

Sadly, what often happens is that our ideals change but behavior does not.

We all know the truism that what you measure is what gets done. Whether we like it or not, our ideals often get trumped by our score card.

So how do we redefine a win when our values have changed? Here’s a five steps that I’ve found helpful: Continue Reading…

The term “Third Place” caught on after Ray Oldenburg’s 1989 book The Great Good Place: Cafes, Coffee Shops, Bookstores, Bars, Hair Salons, and Other Hangouts at the Heart of a Community. Like many books since, Oldenburg outlined how American individualism was starting to take a social toll.

“The course of urban development in America is pushing the individual toward that line separating proud independence from pitiable isolation.”

This isolation has led to our need for a “third place.” If the home is your first place and work is your second place, then the third place is the place where socializing can authentically take place. For many, the need for such places was immediately recognizable. It resulted in a number of social experiments, most notably, the explosion of Starbucks.

It didn’t take long for thought leaders in churchworld to grab on to this. Churches started building in coffee kiosks and books about how churches can be more like Starbucks started showing up. Continue Reading…

With 2015 upon us, many people spend time making grand resolutions. These are good, because they are a means for assessing our lives and setting goals.

But the fact is, we all have small things we can do, right now, that could immediately give us a better life. Why not start there, instead?


Here are 51 ideas I had. What would add? Continue Reading…