Myths & Cliches of Christian Spirituality III: “God Will Never Give You More Than You Can Handle”

Before I read Job all the way thru to the end when I was in seminary, I used to find myself resonating with the ‘wisdom’ Job’s friends offered him.  Their comments made good sense to me.  It sounded like the wisdom and counsel dispensed by Christians everyday to those who are struggling. And then, in…

Read More

Myths & Cliches of Christian Spirituality II: “X”-tremism (the more normal, the less spiritual)

My generation has been assigned a letter.  It is an edgy, scandalous letter.  It is the letter “X.” And this letter, of course, has been used as a marketing emblem in the church subculture to reach young people. “Extreme” became a buzzword.  But dropping off the initial “E” apparently produced an even greater effect.  Young…

Read More

Myths & Cliches of Christian Spirituality I: Utilitarian Spirituality

“Oh God–use me.” I hardly prayed a prayer more often than this one when I was in college.  And it was a prayer I made with great fervor… even desperation.  I wanted to serve as a vessel of God’s divine operations in the world.  More than that, I wanted to be His right hand man,…

Read More

Myths & Cliches of Christian Spirituality: Intro

I just began a sermon series at UCF (www.ucfbirmingham.org) on “Myths & Cliches of Christian Spirituality” and I plan to post my summary reflections on each myth here at Galadriel’s Mirror. The foundational material for these “myths” began coming together for me during my second year in campus ministry at Gardner-Webb University.  I was noticing…

Read More

Terror & Tenderness: Taking Him in… all of Him

[I’m still trying to figure out the exact nature and purpose of Galadriel’s Mirror.  As I embark on a new vocational post leading University Christian Fellowship (UCF–www.ucfbirmingham.org), I do intend for the blog to offer material geared toward college students.  So many of the entries will summarize the fruits of study and the ongoing challenges…

Read More

No one to impress, only One to please

Since my last post I’ve moved from one state to another to take a new ministry post.  My predecessor is one of my best friends, and he is uniquely and exceptionally gifted as a pastor and a teacher.  The ministry is called University Christian Fellowship (in Birmingham, AL), and my friend founded it almost a decade ago. …

Read More

Writing–is less always more?

The volume of material competing for readers’ attention today is overwhelming.  While reading an e-mail, you might notice scrolling across the top of the computer screen a headline for a news story you decide is a must-read.  While reading that news story, you are reminded of your friend who would appreciate the story… a friend who…

Read More

The Internet as Oracle: Wanting God’s will more than God Himself

  When you needed divine instruction in the ancient world, you went to an oracle.  If you waited in line long enough and paid a priest the right fee, then you would be granted access into some inner chamber or subterranean recess.  And just maybe, the god of local sponsorship would give you a word…

Read More

Leaving a small rural church for a large suburban church

            I pastor a small Baptist church outside of Durham, NC.  A weathered sign at the corner of US HWY 70 and Old NC 10 points passersby our way.  It simply reads in faded Old English font: Mount Hermon Baptist Church Est., 1848               When I came to Mount Hermon in September of 2006,…

Read More