“Clem,” Lesslie and J.R.W.: Examples to the Flock

In a congregation with a group of clergy recently, I said something I say often: “We (pastors) lead with our lives.” Our culture places much emphasis on competence and skill. Please, God, let us clergy show competence!  But, let us also do more. 1 Peter 5:2 and 4 say that elders are to “shepherd the […]

Epistemic Humility and the Force of Ideas

Off and on (mostly on, I suppose), I think about the clash of ideas that takes place between people when talking about religion.  In “educated” (I use this word advisedly) middle class America, there is an informal moral principle at work that, I think, confuses the courage of one’s convictions (and the associated truth claims) […]

From One Heart to Another

In 2 Corinthians, Paul is put in the position of defending his ministry.  “Are we beginning to commend ourselves?” he asks the Corinthians.  “You are our letters [of commendation],” he reminds them.  Paul’s “defense” of the authenticity of his work is the strong, open, vulnerable witness he has lived amont these people.  “We have renounced […]

“Have to” Questions, “How Do You Know” Questions

I’m helping to teach a class that affords me opportunity to interact with college students about spirituality. In such venues two sets of questions alway arise. I’m thinking about the unhelpful ways we in the ministry often answer them I call the two categories “have to” questions and “how do you know” questions. An example […]

%d bloggers like this: