Guest Post: Seeking to Understand the Rise, Fall, and Loss of Young Pastors by Robert Stewart

Bob was born to medical missionary parents in Burundi, Africa.  The father of six, he and his pastoral counselor wife, Shari, share a psychiatric practice in Louisville, KY and have long worked in the support and care of missionaries and pastors both here and abroad. A hundred years from now I’m sure that our descendants … Continue reading Guest Post: Seeking to Understand the Rise, Fall, and Loss of Young Pastors by Robert Stewart

In Search of a Spacious Place

He brought me out into a spacious place; he rescued me because he delighted in me. Ps. 18:19 Aren't we all longing for a spacious place? Aren't we all longing for a place to run free, to breathe deeply, to spin round and round with our arms wide open? Don't we all desire relationships where … Continue reading In Search of a Spacious Place

a reminder to take care of you

The older I get, the more the old saying of Jesus "Physician, heal thyself" makes sense. I've spent more than two decades doing a lot of caring. But the more attend to myself, the more sadness I find, the more anxiety I feel, the more trauma I notice. The more I realize that I desperately … Continue reading a reminder to take care of you

Rediscovering Nouwen | On Power and Intimacy

I'm continuing to reflect on Henri Nouwen's 1972 book The Wounded Healer. Now 46 years later, it's as important as ever to wrestle with Nouwen's invitation, particularly when it seems that our political and ecclesial leaders operate more from a posture of power rather than intimacy, particularly as we see our own propensity to live from … Continue reading Rediscovering Nouwen | On Power and Intimacy

Becoming a Wounded Healer

"The great illusion of leadership is to think that one can be led out of the desert by someone who has never been there.” Henri Nouwen I've been re-visiting an old friend recently - Henri Nouwen - who is easily in my Top 5 most formative modern spiritual writers. The lanky Dutchman was a complicated … Continue reading Becoming a Wounded Healer

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

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.”

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