Why It’s Tougher to Grow Sunday Church

Gone are the days when you could do a bit of advertising, open the doors of the church, and see people stream in. Many of us “old-timers” may come up with some pat answers like you need to work harder or go back to the good ole days of revival meetings, but the fact is,…

20/20 Vision

Happy New Year! A new decade! 2020! Wow! As we begin this new year, one of the most important things we can bring to it is clarity. The fact that it is 2020 reminds us that we all need 20/20 vision. The American Optometric Association states that “having 20/20 vision does not necessarily mean you…

What’s a Pastor to Think?

Good pastoring requires good thinking. When you think about it, our thinking effects everything. How we think determines our feelings which are expressed in our actions. No wonder Paul said that we are to bring “every thought into captivity, to the obedience of Christ.” 2 Corinthians 10:5 LET’S TALK So how’s your thinking? Most of…

What Pastors Can Learn from Missionaries

When I was young, I thought I was going to be a missionary. Growing up in a pastor’s house, we had tons of missionaries in our home. I loved to hear their stories. When in High School I took my first missionary trip to Colombia, South America. Later, in college, I spent a summer in…

Slow Down

Remember that Simon and Garfunkel tune that goes “Slow down, you move too fast. You’ve got to make the morning last?” For those under 40, probably not. I know, I’m old! But the fact is, I’m guilty of moving too fast too often.

Ways to Walk

One thing we can miss in our Bibles is all the walking they did. Did you know that the word walking or walked is mentioned over 200 times in the Bible? Yes, I think that is a Biblical argument for us to walk more : -).  It was at least a four-day journey for Jesus…

10 Things Pastors Hate to Admit Publicly

Linda and I have been in full time ministry for over 35 years. Often a pastor and his family feel the pressure to be “on top” of everything when we feel like we are at the bottom of things. It’s hard to admit that you don’t feel like preaching this Sunday or you are having…

Next Year in Jerusalem!

Today a group of twenty-four, led by two of our School of Ministry professors, will depart PDX, destination Israel. They’ll spend just shy of two weeks in the Holy Land where they will join the faithful at the Eastern Wall, walk with the sorrowing on the Via Dolorosa, and celebrate at the Garden Tomb. They’ll…

The Self-Importance Syndrome

Have you ever met someone who just seemed full of themselves? All they talk about is what they’ve accomplished and what is happening to them. They are consumed with their own perspective and personal interests. Everything seems to be about them! Even as I write this, I’m hoping I’m not one of those people! Paul…

Twenty Takeaways from Midwinter 2018

This week the Pacific Conference pastors and spouses are enjoying a few days on the Oregon Coast. It’s an important time in the lives of our pastors as it provides space for reflection, rest, and refreshment. Shared meals and inspired teaching, along with some remarkably beautiful scenery become the backdrop for the growth and encouragement…

Why Better is, well, Better

It’s January and that means it’s resolution time. I read that this habit dates back as far as the Roman World which means we have a long history of January goal-setting. The top New Year Resolutions, according to a recent poll are: (say it with me) 1. Lose weight. 2. Get fit(ter). 3. Eat healthier….

Sustaining Ministry

Have you ever thought of quitting ministry? Every Monday! Right? Seriously, all of us have wondered if we can or even should continue in the pastorate. This past week I turned 60! Yes, I’m getting old. As I look back on 38 years of ministry, it is only because of God’s sustaining grace that I’ve…