Getting Parishioners Back to Church

I am honored to be the keynote speaker at the upcoming San Fransisco Metropolis Clergy/Laity this Friday and excited to join the Stewardship Town Hall Series from the SF Metropolis next Monday! Let’s get folks back in Church! There’s still time to register!  

You Thief! You Liar!

“He’s a liar!” Yep, he sure is, and his actions send ripples throughout his life and the lives of so many others. We were discussing a politician we both knew. But, here’s the rub; this politician held many of the same values and positions we both felt strongly about. However, this politician had been caught in a public and inescapable lie, and not just any lie, like “I really did finish my…

The Test

“But I don’t understand!” How many times have I said these very words concerning something I was going through in my life? If I had a nickel for every time I said this or heard this, especially from my children, I’d be very wealthy. And I really don’t understand why God does what He does; why He allows what He allows, and why He doesn’t do what I think is obvious He…

Are We Negotiating?

“So, now we’re negotiating.” It was a great moment. We had been going back and forth for a while and finally had agreed on a course of action and all that was left to do was determine the details. You see, it had become clear to me that we were not really on the same page about the general vision and direction we wanted the ministry to go and if we were…

From Abram to Abraham!

“A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” Well, sure, but the name “rose” captures that smell perfectly, doesn’t it? You see names matter. They aren’t merely random labels we attach to things, places, and persons. That kind of thinking has gotten us in deep trouble as a society! No, it is no mistake that one of the first jobs God gave Adam was to “name” things! Names reveal (or…

Help Celebrate Fr. Barnabas’ Birthday!

Next Tuesday is Fr. Barnabas’ birthday, and we here at Faith Encouraged want to invite you to help us celebrate. Would you consider making a special gift to Faith Encouraged Ministries to wish Fr. Barnabas a Happy Birthday? Just click the Pay Pal link and make your tax-deductible gift to further the media outreach of Faith Encouraged Ministries. https://www.paypal.com/donate?hosted_button_id=EBZ76697E7M98 Happy Birthday, Fr. Barnabas!

I Believe, Help My Unbelief

On this Sunday of St. John of the Ladder, we are confronted with the power of doubt and a lack of spiritual discipline to weaken us in our faith. What can we do about doubt? How can we stay strong for the spiritual battle that is everyday life?

Do You Believe?

There’s a prevailing notion that the mere granting of mental assent is believing. But is that really true? Is that really enough to actually believe? Does simply saying you think something is true to mean you truly believe it? I know we live in a society that likes to reduce life to “manageable” sizes. We want to reduce achievement to “imagine the possibilities.” We want “positive thinking” to replace the hard work…

This Place IS Holy!

The concept of “holy space” takes a beating in our modern society that values egalitarianism above hierarchy. But without one place being set aside as “holy” we lose the ability to see the “holy” in every place! In our Scripture Lesson today we read how God promised Abram (later his name would be changed to “Abraham”) the land of Israel for his people. Look at Genesis 13:12-18: Abram dwelt in the land…

Go To The Land I will Show You!

Daring to follow God’s plan for your life is an act of faith that rarely happens by accident. You have to be listening to hear His plans! So how do you develop a lifestyle that makes you attentive to God’s direction for your life? It all starts with being willing to be taught. The Scriptures are full of stories about people who dared to follow God’s path and the challenges they faced…