Monday Morning Brief

My favorite moments of the past few weeks.
1. I loved celebrating Christmas with my family.
2. Watching Nathan play with the Hess race cars with my cousins’ kids on my parents’ kitchen floor was great. I literally remember playing with similar cars on the same floor.
3. Loved seeing my brother hold our son Dylan. Two weeks ago our baby had an iv drip going through his hand.
4. My niece Lina is adorable! She’s a miniature version of my sister. Same face, same hair, same smile. I’m told she has my brother-in-laws elbows.
5. The days are short and almost everyone was in the same house. Susan, my parents, siblings, in-laws. cousins, aunts, uncles, it was great.
6. The next day my sister’s family and ours gathered at my cousin’s. They too had a baby born this past May. She’s beautiful and she fits right in.
7. Susan and I trekked into Manhattan the other day and had some time for ourselves.

The sermon I preached Sunday …
went well. I feared it may offend some (and that may be) but the feedback I received was very positive. Which is kind of rare, I usually don’t get a lot of immediate feedback. Maybe I spoke clearer but good sermons (the ones that have moved me sitting in the pew) are the ones that allow the Spirit to work and it’s nice to be a part of that. It seemed to connect with what many of us have been feeling.  I find myself encouraged by the MEFC community this morning.
Basically the message was that we as individuals and as a community are in constant evolution and while many like to say that they don’t like making New Year’s resolutions, the fact of the matter is that we are always resolving towards something. The American Evangelical church is in decline, a steep one and we are evolving towards irrelevance. The text was from Joshua 24, (you know the one, “Choose who you will serve … as for me and my house we will choose OURSELVES!”. Sorry that’s not what it says, but that seems to be more of what I/we practice). I may blog more about this later but if you are inclined, you can listen to it here.

Loved …
seeing Avatar with some current/former students. Highly recommend it.

Reading …
John Franke’s Manifold Witness. I’m almost finished with it but I really love it and trying to soak in as much as I can.

Listening to …
my Christmas playlist and the same Christmas albums.
Manchester Orchestra
Bob Dylan – Together Through Life
Mars Hill Bible Church podcast – Love Your Enemies 11/29/09. In it Rob introduces a pastor from Rwanda telling the story of the genocide, his escape and his return home. All the parts are intense (even returning home). It’s a beautiful story of demonstrating love towards those that have hurt you.”. Link here.
Relevant Magazine podcast – They have been featuring their favorite interviews from 2009: Shane Claiborne, Don Miller, Jon Foreman ….  Click here.

Looking forward to …
The return of youth group. I’ve missed those crazy kids.
returning to seminary for the last half of the year. It’s been a great experience and I’m hoping we all finish strong.
a new year, decade of life, joy, hoping in spite of the pain.
Susan and my ten year wedding anniversary.
a whole lot more that this medium cannot contain.


  1. I am reading Franke’s book too. I like it so far. I think he’s right on.

  2. Ryan Fitz says:

    Dylan’s Together Through Life is a good album, I have really enjoyed the four he’s put out since kind of reinventing himself with Time Out of Mind in 1997. Have you checked out the bizarre Christmas album he released this year in October?

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