The Lost Pastor

I got the call again a few nights ago. It's the same call I get quite often, often by anxious pastoral colleagues or overwhelmed elders or frazzled denominational executives. It's a call I get amidst a pastoral crisis, and it arrives with a familiar cadence and pattern which goes something like this: "Hey Chuck, I … Continue reading The Lost Pastor

God is Always Home :: A Sermon Series

I had the great privilege of preaching a 3-part series in November 2018 called "God Is Always Home." It's my own unique riff on Luke 15. I channel Augustine's lovely line: God is more near to me than I am to myself. I hope it's an encouragement for you during this season. http://westminstergr.org/blog/entry/sermon-god-is-always-home http://westminstergr.org/blog/entry/sermon-god-is-always-home-part-2 http://westminstergr.org/blog/entry/sermon-god-is-always-home-part-3

Believing Women in an Age of Narcissism

(Trigger Warning: If you've been sexually abused or assaulted, please bear in the mind that this piece includes disturbing details of sexual trauma) Step back from the political drama for a moment and consider a woman I saw for counseling years ago (with details changed). She's 39, and I've just officiated her wedding to a … Continue reading Believing Women in an Age of Narcissism

BETRAYED BY THOSE WHO WE THOUGHT ‘GOT IT’ – NARCISSISM AMONG THE “ENLIGHTENED”

Years ago during the Vietnam protests, researchers studied the level of consciousness and self-awareness of those engaged in protests. The assumption was that the protestors engaged this work out of a larger consciousness, a true love for justice, a global worldview, a sense of compassion. What they found was that the large majority were still … Continue reading BETRAYED BY THOSE WHO WE THOUGHT ‘GOT IT’ – NARCISSISM AMONG THE “ENLIGHTENED”

Introducing My New Video Course

I'm excited to share with you my video course An Introduction to Contemplative Prayer. This five-video course is something I believe can be transformation for you, if you give yourself not just to understanding but to practice. These days, mindfulness, yoga, meditation and other embodied practices are all-the-rage. Popular authors like Daniel Siegel, Jon Kabat-Zinn, Daniel Goleman … Continue reading Introducing My New Video Course

Grace (and the abuse of grace) for narcissists and abusers

I live daily with a paradox. On the one hand, grace is audacious, extravagant, immediate, and all-embracing. On the other, grace is painful, reconstructive, surgical, and slow. Grace is the deliverance from Egypt and grace is the long, grueling journey through a blistering wilderness. I live with this paradox because of the work I do. … Continue reading Grace (and the abuse of grace) for narcissists and abusers

A Response to Joe Carter’s TGC blog “The FAQ’s: What Christians Should Know About The Enneagram.”

Over at The Gospel Coalition, Joe Carter has written a thoughtful and measured blog on The Enneagram. I'd encourage you to read it. With Joe, I've seen the shortcomings of this tool in my 15+ years of using it. I'm seeing it become an evangelical fad, of sorts. I had a whole chapter on it … Continue reading A Response to Joe Carter’s TGC blog “The FAQ’s: What Christians Should Know About The Enneagram.”

Bill Hybels and the Future of the Church After #ChurchToo

When I read Phyliss Tickle's The Great Emergence five years ago, I couldn't help but think of that oft-misquoted line about Mark Twain's imminent demise: "Reports of my death are greatly exaggerated." I'd read Regele's The Death of the Church more than a decade before, but after watching the so-called Emergent movement emerge and stumble, never … Continue reading Bill Hybels and the Future of the Church After #ChurchToo

Too far to fall: The pastor’s worst fear – Failure

Failure. It's a f-word of pastoral ministry. It's the worst fear, the deepest dread. "I'd rather be diagnosed with a fatal disease than fail," one candidate wrote on his psychological assessment. "Failure - that's just too far to fall," said another. I was fired in 2003. It was my greatest vocational humiliation. After serving a … Continue reading Too far to fall: The pastor’s worst fear – Failure