Brokenness & Worth

This article is adapted from an essay written for a course at Wesley Seminary. Becoming more self-aware is both a powerful experience and also a painful one. It is a process of seeing our brokenness and finding our worth. In my journey to better understand myself, I have had both great epiphanies and challenging moments of…

A New Brand

“The spirit of Jesus penetrates social boxes. Barricades of suspicion, mistrust, stigma, and hate crumble in his presence. He also invites us to see human beings behind the labels of stigma. His kingdom transcends all boundaries. He welcomes people from all boxes. God’s love overpowers the social customs which divide, separate, and isolate. All are…

Learn the Language

In Leonard Sweet’s book Aqua Church 2.0 he refers to a quote from French philosopher Voltaire in reference to a communication philosophy: “If you would speak to me, you must first learn my language.”[1] In this chapter, Sweet analyzes how the church must be willing to adapt to the changing technological world around it. How…

Parallel Frontiers: The Leadership of Francis Asbury

This post is an excerpt from my master’s thesis, “Parallel Frontiers: Looking to Early Methodist Circuits in America for Insights on Church Multiplication in a Post-Modern Culture.” Francis Asbury was an incredible leader, one who likely changed the shape of American religion more than any other leader. It has been said that Asbury may have traveled more…

In All Things, Love

Talking about unity is important because I believe it is essential for our nation’s current state. In order for unity to occur in the present, we all have to be willing to try to understand each other’s points of view. That has to start with us being open about how we feel about the issues we all face….

Redefining Religious Liberty

“Religious liberty” has become a popular phrase in the last several years. Its popularity has been largely due to political rhetoric coming from conservative evangelical leaders and politicians, specifically in response to the legalization of same-sex marriage. The phrase “religious liberty” has taken on a new meaning: having the religious conviction to be able to…

Confusing the Gospel with Party Platform

This post is adapted from a section in my thesis for Wesley Seminary, “Parallel Frontiers: Looking to Early Methodists in America for Insights on Church Multiplication in a Postmodern Culture.” During the early 19th century in the United States, political parties were born and died. It was during this era that the current concept of…

“One of the Best Preachers in The World”

Thomas Coke referred to Harry Hosier as “one of the best preachers in the world.” It was not uncommon for Hosier to preach to crowds of several hundred—even reaching more than a thousand on at least one occasion. Unfortunately, this acclaimed orator faced unfounded accusations and posthumous rumors, which have tainted his image. His legacy is…

Breaking Points—A Brief History of Church Conflict

This article was adapted from a lecture prepared for a course at Wesley Seminary. Conflict has been an ever-present part of human life since the tragic fall of humanity in the Garden of Eden. Conflict continued to a devastating level when Cain murdered Abel. Throughout the Hebrew Scriptures, we find countless examples of conflict. One of the…

Priesthood of All Believers

Last month, Pope Francis visited a Waldensian church, where he asked forgiveness for the sins the Church had committed against the Waldensians. Most people have never heard of the Waldensians, nor their founder, Peter Waldo (French: Pierre Valdès, Latin: Petrus Valdes). While often regarded as a heretic by the Roman Catholics and a hero by…

Ransomed the Captives

Last week, the U.S. experienced the horiffic tragedy of the shooting at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C. It was a grevious day for for many Americans, but especially for the family, friends, and fellow parishioners of the victims. The media has been helpful in some ways and unhelpful in other ways. One…

Defending Orthodoxy

One of my favorite early Christian leaders is Irenaeus, bishop of Lyon, a city in modern-day France. Tradition indicates that Irenaeus was a “spiritual grandson” of John the Evangelist. It is beleived that Irenaeus was born around 130 CE in Smyrna (modern-day Turkey) and trained under the leadership of Polycarp, bishop of Lyon, who was…