Hagia Sophia1

The Dark Church

By Paul Koch

Being a pastor affords me with some pretty unique experiences. I’ve been invited into the midst of people’s most tender moments. From the bedside of a dying father to the joy of a wedding day or the baptism of a newborn baby, I have found myself graciously allowed to share in such experiences.  These moments have certainly impacted me over the years; teaching me humility, kindness, and gentleness. But there are other experiences that come as part of this vocation. For instance, I spend a lot of time in a church building. Far more time than most people. Read More


Drink of the Week: Alabama Slammer

By Paul Nelson

Last week we enjoyed the classy Manhattan. This week we’ll move to something with less of a pedigree, but still a perennial crowd pleaser. Most folks peg the genesis of the Alabama Slammer to sometime in the early to mid 1970’s. It’s refreshing, tasty, and for folks who don’t appreciate the taste of straight alcohol, this drink is smooth and easy to drink. Read More


Bored with Preaching

By Bob Hiller

Somewhere along the way, I was taught that sermons should always be about Jesus. Further into my training, I learned that this doesn’t just mean that we should talk about what Jesus did a long time ago, but that what Jesus did a long time ago is for you here and now. The proclamation of the Good News (that is, the Gospel) is not simply an explanation of sacred events, but the delivering of sacred gifts, which in itself is a sacred event. Preaching is delivering Jesus to sinners and attacking those things that try to get in His way. At least it should be. At least, that is what I was taught. Read More


Father Fails and Forgiveness

By Ross Engel

My wife commented recently that my sermons have been overflowing with forgiveness. But before I could thank her for such a great compliment, she asked me, “Have you been needing more forgiveness lately?”

Gee, thanks…

The truth of the matter is that I always need forgiveness. Lots of it! We all do. Sinners, to the very core, are always in need of forgiveness.  Read More


Unsafe Theology

By Paul Koch

Do you remember drinking from the garden hose as a child? I do. In fact when I’m working in the yard these days I will still get a quick drink from time to time from the hose. I like it. I like the taste; compared to the water that comes from the dispenser on the door of my fridge you would almost think they were from a different source. The water in the house passes through our water softener system, then through a filtration system in the fridge while it is chilled down a bit before it reaches my glass. In my front yard the water takes a more direct route off the main water line through a tired old hose with a slightly corroded metal spigot and directly into my mouth. It may not be as healthy or safe as the filtered option inside, but there is something simple and enjoyable about it.

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Passion Is Overrated

By Josh Keith –

Okay, hear me out before you scoff and click on another blog. I myself have many passions which I love. I have various passions, and I would never give them up—from the adrenaline rush of setting up anchor and climbing a mountain face to the overly nerdy conversations of new Marvel movies to come. Here’s the kicker: Don’t follow your passions. Now, what I mean by this is that too many people nowadays don’t understand what passion is, or rather what it should be. Passion is happiness; it’s fun something fun that you love, but we have bit of a crisis going on these days. People my age don’t know how to work toward anything but their passion. Read More


Religious Liberty: The Coming American Battle

By Graham Glover

Social conservatives in America have been on the losing end of two epic battles over the past 43 years. The first occurred in 1973 with the decision of the United States Supreme Court in Roe v. Wade to legalize the innocent slaughter of unborn children. The second occurred in 2015 when the Court fundamentally altered the legal and historical definition of marriage in Obergefell v. Hodges. Read More